Archive for February, 2014

2014 NFPA/Thomson Reuters Scholarship

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

Pat Lyons, President-Elect of the American Association for Paralegal Education passed this along on the AAfPE listserv:

NFPA has posted the application for the 2014 NFPA/Thomson Reuters Scholarship.  The deadline to submit the application and required documents is July 1, 2014.
I know many of our programs have had a student win one of the two scholarships over the years and this is another opportunity to have your students apply and win a scholarship to help with their paralegal education!

The scholarships will be awarded at the 2014 NFPA Annual Convention to be held in Dallas, TX.

If you go to the NFPA website www.paralegals.org and click on the link in the middle of the page for the scholarships.
Please share with your students.  What a great Spring Break project!

The Evolving Paralegal

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

I received an email from Andrew Deen (who I don’t know other than from this email) steering me to an infographic produced by George Washington University. I am familiar with GWU online Masters of Paralegal Studies program and know the Associate Dean in charge of that program. One of the programs graduates contributed an article to The Empowered Paralegal Professionalism Anthology.” So, I’m pretty confident that the information contained in the infographic is accurate. Certainly its basic premises that the paralegal profession has evolved significantly over the last few decades (although some members of the bar have not evolved in their thinking about the paralegal profession) and continues to evolve. In any case, Andrew says it’s OK to share the infographic with my readers, so I am:

The George Washington University Master’s of Paralegal Studies Online

Trial by Checklist

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

I’m a big fan of checklists as you can see here, here, here, in other posts, and in all of my books (especially The Empowered Paralegal: Effective, Efficient, and Professional.) Fortunately for all of us checklist lovers, Judge Larry Primeaux is not only a fan of checklists, but he creates them and shares them with us. Today in his blog, The Chancery Court Better Practice Blog, he has collected all of his checklist posts and provided the links to them in one place, “Reprise: The Checklist Thing.”  Judge Primeaux presides in the 12 Chancery Court of Mississippi, but the checklist can easily be adjusted to just about any court so that they work for the jurisdiction in which you practice. Here’s his explanation of how they play a role in ensuring successful litigation:

Proving your case by proving certain factors is a fact of legal life in Mississippi.  I’ve referred to it as trial by checklist.  If you’re not putting on proof of the factors when they apply in your case, you are wasting your and the court’s time, as well as your client’s money, and you are committing malpractice to boot.

This fact of legal life is true in every jurisdiction, not just Mississippi, and provides the basis for the soon to be released The Empowered Paralegal Cause of Action Handbook, a work that explains the role of elements (those “certain factors” to which the Judge refers) in litigation from investigation through  closing arguments.

I hope one day to persuade Judge Primeaux to turn his invaluable posts into a book. In the meantime here are the checklists he has available:

ere is an updated list of links to the checklists I’ve posted:

Attorney’s fees.

Attorney’s fees in an estate.

Adverse possession.

Child custody.

Closing an estate.

Doing an accounting in a probate matter.

Grandparent visitation.

Equitable distribution.

Income tax dependency exemption.

Modification of child support.

Periodic and rehabilitative alimony.

Lump sum alimony.

Separate maintenance.