Board of Trustees Report, November 18, 2016

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The following is a summary of actions taken at the Nov. 18, 2016, meeting of the New Jersey State Bar Association Board of Trustees at the New Jersey Law Center in New Brunswick. This summary does not constitute official minutes.

Audit: The New Jersey State Bar Association has a strong financial base and is a thriving home to the state’s largest lawyers group and the leading continuing legal education organization, a draft auditor’s report from Withum, Smith + Brown showed. The board adopted the draft audit for fiscal year 2016, which ended in June. The auditors found no issues of concern and expected to issue a clean and unmodified opinion when the report is finalized in the coming weeks.
Law Center: The Board of Trustees approved a proposal to complete security upgrades at the New Jersey Law Center to protect the safety of Law Center staff and guests.
Amicus: The trustees agreed the NJSBA should seek friend-of-the-court status in Bisbing v. Bisbing, a family law matter. The association will advocate in favor of the Appellate Division ruling for a remand and urge that the scope of the remand focus on whether the plaintiff, who did not have an attorney, made a knowing, clear and unmistakable waiver of statutory rights to have a court grant permission to relocate children, based on the lack of counsel and ambiguous language. Read the brief here.
Events: Contracts for two upcoming events were approved by the board, including the Elder Law Retreat on April 20-21 in Long Branch, and the Solo and Small-Firm Conference’s southern location in Cherry Hill on March 4. To register for the Solo Conference’s north location, click here. To register for the Solo Conference’s south location, click here.
Disciplinary Oversight Committee budget: With the board’s approval, the NJSBA will renew its concerns about the large size of the Disciplinary Oversight Committee’s reserve, which remains at over 25 percent of its operating budget. The association will also urge the consideration of a reduction in annual attorney assessment fees if the trend continues, as well as urge officials to work within the committee’s budgetary constraints to ensure no increases are necessary in future years, even if the reserve is drawn down to an amount that is more consistent with standard business protocols. Read the NJSBA letter here.
Government affairs: The board approved support of A-3892/S-2463, which would adjust the time from 45 days to 60 days when child placement review hearings are initiated.