A Message from President Craig P. Wagnild:


It is that time of the year again. No, I don't mean St. Patrick's Day or cherry blossom viewing. It is bill passing time at the State Capitol and the legislature is in full swing with 753 bills (House 363, Senate 390) surviving the first crossover. What does this have to do with you and the practice of law in Hawaii? The answer is: A lot. And that is why each of us, as legal practitioners versed and knowledgeable in the law, as professionals who have elected as our occupation to learn and teach others about the law, and as citizens who care about what the law is and how it helps protect the rights and expectations of our community, should feel a moral and very personal obligation to get involved in the process. Why am I spending one of my precious message opportunities telling you about this? Because there are a few things about the legislative process and the HSBA that I think are worth sharing. Allow me to tell you about three of them.

First, as a unified bar, the HSBA is restricted in its ability to engage in activities, permit the use of its name in relation with, or take positions on, political or ideological issues except in very limited circumstances where the HSBA Board determines with reasonable certainty that the issue is germane to the purposes of the unified bar and believes that such activities or position taken by the HSBA generally would be supported by its members. This is referred to as our Keller policy, after the California Supreme Court decision in Keller v. State Bar of California, 496 U.S. 1 (1990), and is codified in Section 7.2 of the HSBA Board Policy Manual. For purposes of the Keller analysis, "germane" means "regulating the legal profession" or "improving the quality of legal services available to the public." As you can appreciate, this is because, like many other state bar associations, we collect mandatory dues from attorneys so the restriction is technically on the use of funds received from members' mandatory dues. However, as a practical matter, the HSBA as an organization takes a very conservative approach to involvement in the legislative process, preferring instead to have testimony and other activities done by members, sections, or other groups unrestricted by Keller. From time to time I receive e-mails, letters, and calls from attorneys asking the HSBA to weigh in and provide support or opposition to pending legislation. No matter how worthy or important the cause, and no matter how I may personally feel about the issue, the HSBA as an organization represents all of us and our Keller policy protects each of us as members from the political and ideological views of those who happen to serve as its leaders. Respecting and complying with Keller is an obligation to each of you and to our bar as a whole that I and all of us on the HSBA Board take seriously.

Read the full message here.
A Message from YLD President Jeff Kent:


Congratulations to all the hard work of the students, coaches, judges, coordinators, and other volunteers that helped with the mock trial program this year. Saint Joseph School from Hilo, Island School from Kauai and Moanalua High School team A and B will be competing in the state finals on March 23, 2013 at the Supreme Court. Thanks to everyone that braved the rain to attend the ABA new lawyer mixer. Next month we will have more information about preparations for Law Week in May.

Jeff Kent

Applicants Sought for Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection Board

Applicants are being sought for the Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection of the Bar of Hawaii Board (LFCP). The term expiring is for one of the attorney positions on the five member board.

The LFCP board members serve without compensation for a term of five years and are appointed by the Supreme Court of Hawaii. The duties of the board are to oversee and administer the LFCP, the purpose of which is to reimburse, to the extent provided by the Rules of the Hawaii Supreme Court, losses caused by dishonest conduct of members of the bar.

Interested individuals should send a letter and resume indicating their interest in serving on the LFCP board to:

Gayle J. Lau, Chair Nominating Committee of the Hawaii Supreme Court
P.O. Box 26436
Honolulu, HI 96825
The deadline for applying is March 31, 2013.


Contact the Joint Committee of the Hawaii State Trial Judges Association and the Hawaii State Bar Association.

Do you have a concern about a particular lawyer or judge or about the courtroom in general, but don't know where to turn?

The HSTJA/ HSBA Committee (formerly known as the Bench/Bar Committee) serves as a confidential clearinghouse for concerns about state court judges and practitioners, specifically or generally. The Committee's purpose is to provide positive corrective measures at an early stage before there is a need for
formal disciplinary action by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel, Commission on Judicial Conduct or any other body and to do so in a confidential setting.

Concerned lawyers may contact the lawyer members of the Committee; concerned judges may contact the judicial members. View the informational flyer for contact information.

Judicial Vacancy Application Deadline

The Judicial Selection Commission is accepting nominations and applications to fill the following judicial vacancy in the State of Hawaii:

District Judge, District Court of the First Circuit (Oahu)

The Constitution of the State of Hawaii requires that the persons selected by the Commission be residents and citizens of the State of Hawaii and of the United States, and have been licensed to practice law by the Hawaii Supreme Court. A judge of the district court shall have been licensed to practice law for a period of not less than five years preceding nomination. No judge shall, during the term of office, engage in the practice of law, or run for or hold any other office or position of profit under the United States, the State or its political subdivisions.

The Commission invites anyone who meets the constitutional requirements and is interested in the position to apply directly to the Commission. Applicants are not required to be nominated. The application must be post-marked or delivered to the address below on or before the application deadline of Thursday, April 25, 2013.

Details here: http://bit.ly/Wt8VbX

Get ahead in 2013 through the HSBA's Lawyer Referral & Information Service!

Paying clients!

Instant email notifications of clients referred!

Join a nationwide network of ABA approved LRIS Services!

Learn more about the HSBA's LAWYER REFERRAL & INFORMATION SERVICE (LRIS) - The only game in town with nearly 40 years of Bar sponsorship. To sign up download the registration form or email LRIS@hsba.org.



March 18
Law Firm Brand & Market Survey Breakfast

March 21
SCD Coffee Hour on Medicaid
Federal Bar Association March Brownbag

March 23
Mock Trial Competition - Final Round

March 25
Appellate & Litigation Meeting (1 MCPE)

March 28
HSBA Board Meeting

March 29
Deadline for Leadership Institute Applicants

March 31
Deadline to Apply to Lawyers' Fund for Client Protection Board

2013 Law Firm Brand Awareness & Market Survey Breakfast on March 18
Time: 8:30 - 9:30 am.
Location: Hawaii State Bar Association Conference Room (No Parking Validation)
Cost: Free to HSBA members

Register today for a law firm brand awareness & market survey breakfast with the HSBA and Pacific Business News.

In December 2012, PBN independently commissioned a survey with third-party research company, Readex, to find out more about Hawaii's law firms by polling a portion of the PBN subscriber base.

Bob Charlet, publisher of Pacific Business News and Michelle Stofle, advertising manager, will present the recent survey and answer questions regarding the process.

In-Person Seminar

Live Webcast

Upcoming Meetings and Events at the Beginning of April

The International Law Section will hold its April meeting on April 4 at the offices of Bronster Hoshibata. The featured speaker will be Keith K. Suzuka, partner with McCorriston Miller Mukai MacKinnon LLP. For more information and to RSVP view the meeting details.

The Hawaii Women Lawyers Annual Awards will be held on April 5 at the Plaza Club. The event recognizes members as Outstanding Woman Lawyer of the Year, Outstanding Judicial Achievement Award, Distinguished Service Award and more. For more information and to register visit the registration page.

HSBA Family Connections

This month's interview features Professor Randall Roth and his son John Roth, an attorney with the Law Offices of Robert W. Hastings. Read the entire feature on the HSBA website. Have a HSBA family you would like to recommend for this feature? Email us with your recommendation.

Upcoming SCD Coffee Hour on Medicaid Eligibility for Nursing Home Care

The next SCD coffee hour is on March 21 from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the HSBA Conference Room. This informational session is free to HSBA members. Please note: the HSBA does not provide parking validation. For more information on the upcoming coffee hour, view the flyer.

Run for the 2014 HSBA Board

Consider offering your expertise or fresh ideas to the HSBA Board by running in the next election.

The following officer positions (1-year term) will be available beginning January 2014: Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary. The following director positions (2-year term) will be available: five for Oahu, one for Kauai, and one for West Hawaii. Board members from Maui and East Hawaii are currently serving a 2-year term set to expire in December 2014. If interested, email a cover letter & resume to the HSBA Nominating Committee (nominations@hsba.org) by April 30th. The Nominating Committee will have a slate ready by the end of May, and discourages any campaigning before that time.

HSBA Board Welcomes Comments on Proposed Rule Amendments

Please send your written comments by April 8th at 12 noon to president@hsba.org on proposed amendments to the Hawaii Rules Governing Trust Accounting, to Rules 11 and 17 regarding the management of client funds and the process for promulgating rules and Rule 2 regarding the Office of Disciplinary Counsel and the Disciplinary Board. Otherwise comments may be submitted directly to the Judiciary by their later deadlines.

2013 Basic Legal Staff Training and Certification Registration Form Available

The Basic Legal Staff Training and Certification Program for 2013 will run from June through September. Training is designed for Legal Support Staff covering all major categories of Law: Litigation, Business, Real Estate, Family, Criminal Law and more.

The Basic Legal Staff Training Course is based on the Basic Manual for Lawyer's Assistant 11th Edition, West Publishing. Classes meet Mondays and Thursdays from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. with a few Friday sessions from noon to 1 p.m. Students receive Certificate of Completion upon meeting attendance and course exam requirements. 

Classes are held at Hawaii State Bar Association Conference Room at 1100 Alakea Street Suite 1000. Course includes 36 hours of instruction, text & workbook for $400. Optional Certification Exam available for students for $50. For more information email egomez@hsba.org or call 792-7350. Webcast options available for Neighbor Island participants.

View and download the 2013 Program Registration Form.