Classes & Programs

Upcoming Speaker Programs:

PDF iconWednesday, June 28, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, Substance Abuse in the Legal Community
Presented by Amy Dhall, Esq.
Government Account Manager, Thomson Reuters
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit in Competence
This event will include a discussion of the relevant professional rules of ethics. We will also discuss the effect of substance abuse on the legal practice within our micro-culture of the Bay Area.

PDF iconWednesday, July 12, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, Introduction to Westlaw
Presented by Amy Dhall, Esq.
Government Account Manager, Thomson Reuters
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
This comprehensive overview will teach you how to retrieve documents by citation, navigate through the search interface, and use KeyCite. Learn how to search with WestSearch, advanced search functions, Boolean terms and connectors, the West Key Number System, and how to retrieve specific content.
Download this free Westlaw patron access user guide.

PDF iconThursday, July 13, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, Lexis Advance Training Part 1:
Drinking from a Fire Hydrant: Basic Legal Research in the Age of Technology
Presented by Rebecca Cattich, Esq., Solutions Consultant, LexisNexis
1 Hour of free Participatory MCLE Credit
Learn the fundamentals of Lexis Advance. The topics covered will include: using the interface, selecting sources, using citations and party names, refining searches, working with sections of a case, and other Lexis Advance topics.
Download this free Lexis Advance PDF iconuser guide.

PDF iconWednesday, August 2, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, Lexis Advance Training Part 2:
Drinking from a Fire Hydrant: Basic Legal Research in the Age of Technology
Presented by Rebecca Cattich, Esq., Solutions Consultant, LexisNexis
1 Hour of free Participatory MCLE Credit
This program will build on basic topics introduced in the July 13 program.
Download this free Lexis AdvancePDF iconuser guide.

You can email sflawlibrary@sfgov.org with "subscribe" in the subject line to receive our e-updates with information about upcoming programs. Programs are free and open to everyone. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

We are looking for speakers on legal or law related topics of interest to the legal community and citizens of San Francisco!
If you would like to be considered as a speaker, please complete and submit this Speaker Proposal form. Please feel free to put your answers in a separate document. Contact us with any questions at sflawlibrary@sfgov.org .

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Past Programs:

Wednesday, June 14, Noon to 1:00pm, Choosing a Retirement Solution For Your Small Business Client
Presented by Christine Kerley, J.D.
Benefit Advisor with the U.S. Department of Labor
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
 
The U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), in partnership with the Internal Revenue Service, developed this presentation to assist attendees in choosing a retirement plan for small businesses.  The program provided an overview of different retirement plans and their features.  This presentation was part both agencies’ ongoing efforts to help small employers and their service providers to understand and comply with federal retirement plan tax reporting and fiduciary law by providing publications, websites, outreach and telephone assistance.

Christine Kerley has worked with EBSA since 2006, during which time she has held positions as Investigator and Benefit Advisor.  She has conducted investigations and informal reviews dealing with a wide range of ERISA compliance issues.  Ms. Kerley is a member of the California State Bar, and holds a B.A. from the University of California, San Diego and a J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

This was the first in a series on employment benefits presented by the U.S. Department of Labor and the San Francisco Law Library. MCLE materials were provided at the program.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, Senior United States District Court Judge Thelton Henderson, on his career, serving justice and community

Judge Thelton Henderson, joined by Breaking New Ground author Richard B. Kuhns, celebrated and looked back at impactful decisions from the judge’s career — a career that includes notable decisions on veterans’ affairs, educational and prison reform, and the environment. They also looked back at Judge Henderson’s role as a local community activist as a young attorney and what it means to today's lawyers who want to serve justice and community.

Thursday, April 20, Noon to 1:00pm, Classroom v. Courtroom: Law School Reform & Reform in the Courts
Presented by the Honorable Curtis E. A. Karnow
Judge of the San Francisco Superior Court
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit

Curtis Karnow, a judge on the Superior Court of San Francisco, on the occasion of his new book, Litigation in Practice, discussed reforms in law school classrooms and law journals – reforms needed to help lawyers, and the courts, better do their work.

Litigation in Practice by Curtis E. A. Karnow
Author of Rutter’s Civil Procedure Before Trial (West/Thomson Reuters), Superior Court Judge Curtis E. A. Karnow’s Litigation in Practice provides invaluable tips, court room strategies and helpful insights of the trial process, with a no-nonsense writing style, offering “court room do’s and don’ts” that every new trial lawyer and student needs in understanding that “law is what happens in the courtroom.” Other sections provide advanced practical guidance for settlement, case management, using case precedent, and expert testimony. -Publisher

Wednesday, March 8, Noon to 1:00pm, The Cannabis Industry: Issues for Lawyers
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
Presented by Attorneys Shabnam Malek & Amanda Conley
Brand & Branch LLP

The cannabis industry has reached nearly $7 billion dollars in sales nationwide. Eight states have fully legalized cannabis for adults 21 and over. Every election cycle, we see more and more states engaging in some form of legalization or decriminalization of cannabis or medical cannabis. This growing industry has created a sea change in the legal services industry, where business attorneys are finding themselves in the middle of a quickly growing industry with needs as vast as intellectual property, corporate compliance, mergers and acquisitions, and environmental law. Much of the legal advice is given in the "gray area" -- it's not always clear what is legal and what is not -- so businesses and their attorneys must work together to chart a course that meets the risk tolerance of the company. Shabnam Malek and Amanda Conley provided an overview of the cannabis industry and talked about some of the most pressing legal issues, with a focus on the intellectual property issues. They also talked about the founding of the National Cannabis Bar Association and what lawyers need in order to offer excellent and ethical advice to this growing industry.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017, Noon to 1:00pm, American Justice in Trial: Famous Trials of the 20th Century and the Developing Recognition, Identification and Prevention of Bias
Presented by Judge Lise Pearlman (Ret.)
1 hour of free participatory MCLE Credit in Elimination of Bias
Materials provided at the program

Judge Lise Pearlman (Ret.) discussed thirteen of the most famous trials of the 20th Century, and how the lessons learned from these trials can help to eliminate bias from the legal profession. Judge Pearlman provided a riveting account of the 1968 Huey P. Newton trial, the case that revolutionized the jury of one’s peers. This program included a reenactment of Charles R. Garry's voir dire in this landmark 1968 trial, a scene still discussed in law schools today.

Judge Pearlman discussed the famous trials of:

  • OJ Simpson
  • Leon Czolgosz (the McKinley assassination)
  • Heavyweight Champion Jack Johnson (under the Mann Act)
  • Leo Frank (for the murder of Mary Phagan)
  • Sacco and Vanzetti
  • Henry Sweet (NAACP test case on defense of one’s home)
  • Charles Manson
  • The 1931 Thalia Massie Rape Charges and 1932 Tommie Massie “Honor Killing”’
  • Black Panther Co-Founder Huey P. Newton
  • Black Panther Co-Founder Bobby Seale
  • Angela Davis
  • Bernhard Goetz (the New York subway vigilante)
  • Timothy McVeigh (The 1997 Oklahoma City Bombing Trial)

Thursday, February 9, Noon to 1:30pm, Moskovitz on Writing Winning Appeals and Writs
Co-sponsored with CEB Logo
Presented by Myron Moskovitz
1.5 Hours of free participatory MCLE Credit in person at the SF Law Library
PDF iconFeb 9 Appeals MCLE Materials
Also available via WebEx live stream by CEB
Attorneys who think strategically and creatively when writing an appellate brief or a petition for writ significantly boost their chances of winning.  Appellate expert Myron Moskovitz provided practical insights and real-life lessons to help attorneys: 

  • Draft legal arguments that will engage and persuade an appellate justice to rule in their client’s favor
  • Evaluate which issues are worth appealing or petitioning for writ
  • Advise clients on whether to appeal or file a writ
  • Write to persuade an appellate justice
  • Change their way of thinking as they draft
  • Use new, practical tools in their writing approach
  • Assess their legal arguments strategically
  • Apply their strategy consistently
  • Use techniques designed to change the justice’s mind at oral argument
     

Wednesday, December 14, 2016, Noon to 1:00pm, Mindfulness & Meditation For a Happier & Saner Law Practice
Presented by Attorneys Jeena Cho & Karen Gifford, authors of The Anxious Lawyer
The authors ofThe The Anxious Lawyer discussed how to use mindfulness and meditation for a happier and saner law practice, practical tips for finding more ease, led a guided meditation, and practices you can integrate into your life to find more clarity and self-knowledge.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016, Noon to 1:00pm, The Strategic Use of Motions During and After Trial
Co-sponsored with CEB Logo
1 Hour of free Participatory MCLE Credit for those attending at the SF Law Library
Presented by:
Hon. Stephen P. Freccero, Marin County Superior Court
Eugene G. Illovsky, Illovsky Law Office, Oakland
Stuart C. Plunkett, Baker Botts LLP, San Francisco
The Hon. Stephen Freccero, Stuart Plunkett, and Eugene Illovsky discussed strategies for bringing and opposing the most common motions during and after trial in California state court, strategies at play in deciding whether and when to bring them. and the multitude of choices available, depending on the events of the case for these major motions that require careful consideration.
Highlighted motions included: Motions In Limine, Motion for Nonsuit, Motion for Judgment, Motion for Directed Verdict, Motion for Mistrial, Motion for Judgment Notwithstanding the Verdict, Motion for New Trial, Motion to Vacate and Enter a Different Judgment.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016, Noon to 1:00pm, Getting Started with Legal Self-Help Resources
Presented by Eric Y. Yap, Reference Librarian
This class introduced self-help resources for persons getting started on researching a legal issue or representing themselves in court, covering resources available through the California Courts website, the local superior court in San Francisco, the San Francisco Law Library, and free legal information websites.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016, U.S. Supreme Court 2016 Term Preview
1.25 Hours of free Participatory MCLE Credit
Presented by Anna-Rose Mathieson
Partner, California Appellate Law Group, and former clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
The U.S. Supreme Court's 2016 Term started in October. This CLE covered the most interesting and significant cases up for decision in the next year, including a recap of the 2015 Term, looking at the Justices' voting patterns and the reversal rates for various circuits. The bulk of the program focused on key cases on the docket for the 2016 Term, touching on subjects from insider trading to copyright to the death penalty.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016, Getting Started with Legal Self-Help Resources
Presented by Eric Y. Yap, Reference librarian
This class introduced self-help resources for persons getting started on researching a legal issue or representing themselves in court, covering resources available through the California Courts website, the local superior court in San Francisco, the San Francisco Law Library, and free legal information websites.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016, Finding Legislative History
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
Presented by Attorney Jan Raymond, Principal
Legislative History & Intent

How to find legislative history materials for California and federal statutes and regulations and an overview of how to find materials regarding the law of selected other jurisdictions.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016, Your First DUI Case: From Intake to Jury Trial 
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
Presented by Eloy I. Trujillo, Attorney
Eloy I. Trujillo, PC

In this 1 hour seminar, Eloy provided a practice-focused exploration of issues presented in handling your first CA DUI case, from intake to trial.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016, How to Fight Debt Collectors in California State Court
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
Presented by James Michel
San Francisco Consumer Protection and Debt Relief Lawyer
The spike in debt collection lawsuits following the 2008 financial crisis continues as a steady stream to this day, mostly for old credit card balances being collected by debt purchasers. (At the same time, consumer bankruptcy filings continue to drop about 10% per year from the last peak in 2010. In the Northern District of California alone, 2014 filings were down 29% from the previous year.) This program covered ways to defend against these lawsuits, and how to identify potential liability of debt collectors for federal or state FDCPA violations.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016, Navigate Probate E-Filing & E-Service
Presented by Natalie Emken
Trainer/Specialist File & Serve Xpress by Mozato
This program was aimed at helping attorneys and their support staff who e-File in San Francisco Superior Court Probate department avoid or mitigate rejections, better understand the process, and take the fear out of e-Filing and e-Service.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016, Mediation: The Power of Silence
Presented by Gabriel L. Bellman, Esq.
Bay Area Mediation Services Panelist
The art of the pause. Using time and space to your advantage. This was the seventh in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016, Trademark Law 101: Protecting a Company’s Name and Brand Identity 
Presented by Mark Punzalan, Esq.
Punzalan Law, P.C.
1 Hour free Participatory MCLE Credit
This program covered basic trademark principles, reasons to register a trademark, registering a mark with the USPTO, criteria, choosing a name to be trademarked, the trademark search, search sources, criteria for “customer confusion” between two marks, protecting trademark rights, and disputes.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016, What You Need to Know About Rent Control in San Francisco
Presented by Roger Levin & Marissa Jimenez
The San Francisco Rent Board

Thursday, January 21, 2016, Upping Our Game: Mindfulness and Meaning in Mediation
Presented by Barbara Bryant, Esq.
This was the sixth in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

January 14, 2016, Estate Planning: How to Navigate Estate Battles Before They Start
Presented by Attorney and Mediator John O’Grady
The O'Grady Law Group
This program discussed the latest approaches to estate planning questions and estate planning basics.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015, Motions Practice Before The Ninth Circuit: An Insider’s Guide
Presented by Susan Gelmis, Supervising Staff Attorney
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Susan Gelmis, the supervisor of the Ninth Circuit’s Motions Unit presented an inside view regarding how the Court processes and reviews motions.  The program focused on substantive motions such as motions for summary disposition; emergency motions; motions to supplement the record; petitions for a writ of mandamus; motions to stay; and, motions relating to attorney’s fees and costs.  She also provided guidance on how to avoid common mistakes and explain how to effectively present common procedural motions. The program also included an overview of the court’s case load (click to download PDF) and motions and disposition of process (click to download 9th Circuit guide), a tour of the court’s public website, available resources, and a question and answer period.
This program has been approved for one hour of MCLE credit by the State Bar of California.

Thursday, November 19, 2015, How to Effectively Prepare, Participate In, and Present Your Case in Mediation
Presented by Mark J. Divelbiss, Esq. and Elizabeth A. Tippin, Esq.
This was the fifth in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015, E-Filing in the First District Court of Appeal – What’s New and What’s Next
Panel Presentation by:
Susan Graham, Assistant Clerk/Administrator
First District Court of Appeal
Conness Thompson, Attorney at Law
Link to course materials 1st DCA Quick Start Guide and 1st DCA Local Rule 16 
This program has been approved for one hour of MCLE credit by the State Bar of California.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015, Deconstructing Client Positions: Identifying Interests and Working Towards Agreement
Presented by Nicole Gesher, Esq.
Gesher Mediation 
Attendees of this workshop-style presentation gained new mediation skills. This was the fourth in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015, U.S. Supreme Court 2015 Term Preview
1 Hour of free MCLE Credit
Presented by Anna-Rose Mathieson, Partner
California Appellate Law Group, and former clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Thursday, September 17, 2015, Roadblocks or Obstacles in Mediation: Recognizing and Working Through Them
Presented by Mark J. Divelbiss, Esq., BASF ADR Panel Member
This was the third in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015, Lexis Advance Training Part 2, MCLE*
Presented by Rebecca Cattich, Esq., Legal Research Consultant
This program built on basic topics introduced in the September 2 program.
*The September 2 and September 16 Lexis programs have been approved for one hour of MCLE credit.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015, Lexis Advance Training Part 1: Drinking from a Fire Hydrant: Basic Legal Research in the Age of Technology, MCLE*
Presented by Rebecca Cattich, Esq., Legal Research Consultant
*The September 2 and September 16 Lexis programs have been approved for one hour of MCLE credit.

Thursday, August 20, 2015, Effective Negotiating in Mediation
Presented by Robert Fries, Esq., Bay Area Mediation Services Panelist
Carter Carter Fries & Grunschlag
This program addressed how to use proven negotiation tools to enhance mediation outcomes, and was the second in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015, Free Introduction to WestlawNext!
Presented by Amy Dhall, Esq., Government Account Manager
Thomson Reuters 
Westlaw Classic has been retired. The new WestlawNext interface differs substantially from the Classic Westlaw interface. This class covered the essential search skills you need to get the most out of WestlawNext. Download this free WestlawNext patron access user guide.
This program has been approved for one hour of MCLE credit by the State Bar of California.

Thursday, July 16, 10 Mediation Tips & Tricks: How to Prepare Yourself and Your Client for Mediation
Presented by Kevin C. Coleman Esq., Bay Area Mediation Services Panelist
Mediation Office of Kevin C. Coleman
This program was the first in a series on mediation presented by Bay Area Mediation Services of The Bar Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Law Library.

Thursday, June 11, 2015, Counterfeit Science in the Courtroom
Presented by the Honorable Curtis E.A. Karnow
Judge of the San Francisco Superior Court
This program has been approved for 1.25 hours of MCLE credit by the State Bar of California.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015, Tipping the Balance of Justice in California: The Impact of Proposition 47 on California Sentencing, Prison Overcrowding, and Drug Treatment Programs
Presented by Milena Blake, Policy Director
Californians for Safety and Justice

Wednesday, May 13, 2015, SF Civil/Complex Litigation Cases:  Road Rules for Successful e-Filing & e-Service – Learn How to Avoid 95% of the Reasons for Rejection with SFSC! (1 Free Hour of MCLE)
Presented by Natalie Emken, Trainer/Product Specialist
File & ServeXpress

Wednesday, November 19, 2014, Enforcing Judgments in the Digital Age: Eating Soup with a Knife
Presented by Attorney David J. Cook
Cook Collection Attorneys

Wednesday, October 29, 2014, Estate Planning: How to Navigate Estate Battles Before They Start
Presented by Attorney John O'Grady

Wednesday, October 22, 2014, California’s New Limited Liability Law: What California LLC Owners and Managers Need to Know About the New Law
Presented by Attorney June Lin

Wednesday, March 20, 2013, Effective Written and Oral Advocacy: Dos and Don'ts in Briefs and at Hearings
Presented by the Honorable Harold Kahn
Judge of the San Francisco Superior Court

Wednesday, March 13, 2013, The America Invents Act: What Does It Mean for Inventors, Applicants, and Patentees?
Presented by Christopher Peil
Law Office of Christopher Peil

Wednesday, February 27, 2013, Branding Your Business: The Basics of Trademark Law Explained in Plain English
Presented by Jason Putnam Gordon, Attorney
Putnam Gordon P.C.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013, Start off the New Year Debt Free: Learn about Options for Dealing with Debt
Presented by Attorneys Jeena Cho and Jeff Curl
JC Law Group

Wednesday, December 12, 2012, Employment Discrimination Law 101: Understanding Your Rights in the Workplace
Presented by Attorney Katharine Chao

Wednesday, November 14, 2012, Navigating the Sea of Paperwork in an Uncontested Dissolution of Marriage or Domestic Partnership
Presented by Attorney L. Bailey Penzotti

Wednesday, October 24, 2012, What They Did Not Teach You in Law School: How to Survive in the Practice of Law and Eventually Thrive
Presented by Attorney Benjamin Elliot Kaplan
Kaplan and MacLellan
Coauthor of California Forms of Pleading and Practice Annotated, Volume 29.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012, Estate Planning Made Easy
Presented by Attorney Robert L. Ferris.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012, What Are Judges Thinking?: Procedural Fairness and Getting to the Right Result
Presented by the Honorable Curtis E. A. Karnow
Judge of the San Francisco Superior Court.

September 26, 2012, Ten Most Common Legal Mistakes Business Owners Make & How to Avoid Them
Presented by Business and Real Estate Attorney Nancy Lewellen
Palladian Law Group
Coauthor of Woman Entrepreneur Extraordinaire.

September 11, 2012, Immigration Rights, Relief, and Resources
Presented by Immigration Attorney Kara R. Weisman

August 15, 2012, Everything You Wanted to Know about Renting in San Francisco but Were Afraid to Ask
Presented by Attorney Benjamin Elliot Kaplan
Kaplan and MacLellan
Coauthor of California Forms of Pleading and Practice Annotated, Volume 29.