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The Florida Bar Podcast

Welcome to the Official Florida Bar Podcast. This monthly series is brought to you by the Florida Bar’s Practice Resource Institute and will feature esteemed leaders in law discussing new and innovative topics. Its purpose is to help members of the Florida Bar as well as attorneys from other states run better practices and provide better legal services to their clients.
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Jun 15, 2018

Meditation could be a helpful tool for lawyers struggling with crippling stress and anxiety, but most are intimidated by the idea or don’t know where to start. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Jeena Cho about how meditation helped her with her stress and how other attorneys can implement it in their practice. She ends the episode with a two minute meditation practice for those who want to see what typical meditation feels like.

Jeena Cho is the author of two books: The Anxious Lawyer, An 8-Week Guide to a Joyful and Satisfying Law Practice Through Mindfulness and Meditation, and How to Manage Your Law Office.

Jun 15, 2018

As his two years as president comes to an end, there’s a lot for Michael Higer to reflect on. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host and president-elect John Stewart talks to Florida Bar President Michael Higer about his position. They discuss his initiatives, including his focus on lawyer health and wellness, and the challenges he overcame dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

Jun 15, 2018

For this year’s annual Federal Judicial Roundtable, 28 judges from multiple districts allowed practitioners the unique experience of discussing hypothetical cases with experienced judges. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Renee Thompson talks to John Barkett about the event and topics of hypotheticals practitioners discussed, which ranged from document possession to draft expert reports.

John Barkett is a commercial and environmental lawyer with x.

Jun 15, 2018

In honor of Elder Abuse Awareness Day, update yourself on what’s happening on the elder law forefront. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Karla Eckhardt talks to Peggy Hoyt and Alex Douglas about the different forms of elder abuse and what advanced age persons can do to protect themselves. They discuss resources, including the elder abuse hotline, and the complexities of guardianship.

Peggy Hoyt is a founding partner of Hoyt & Bryan where she practices in the areas of family wealth and legacy counselling, including elder law.

Alex Douglas handles a wide variety of probate and trust litigation, fiduciary litigation, and contested guardianship cases with Shuffield, Lowman & Wilson.

Jun 15, 2018

For those confused or curious about how The Florida Bar’s e-filing portal works, here’s the information that you need to get started. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Amy Borman and Murray Silverstein about the Florida Bar’s e-filing portal, how it works, and how attorneys can get their documents properly e-filed. They explain document submission standards and offer resources to help Florida attorneys stay current on all things e-filing.

Amy Borman currently serves as the 15th Judicial Circuit’s first general counsel.

Murray Silverstein is managing partner in Greenspoon Marder’s Tampa office.

Jun 15, 2018

Most of the time our pets provide us with love and support, but sometimes our pets and other animals need legal support. That’s when animal lawyers step in. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Karla Eckhardt talks to Ralph DeMeo, Matthew Deitz, and Gregg Morton about hot topics in animal law and the growing success of the Animal Law Section of the Florida Bar. They discuss programs the section is investing time in and the real difference they’re making in the banning of greyhound racing.

Ralph DeMeo is a shareholder at Baker Donelson with a concentrated practice on environmental and land use law.

Matthew Dietz is a founding member and current litigation director of Disability Independence Group.

Gregg Morton is chair of the Animal Law Section of The Florida Bar.

Jun 15, 2018

Criminal law saw some game-changing cases this year that cracked down on jury bias and developed exceptions to the exclusionary rule. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Karla Eckhardt talks to Denis deVlaming about a couple important US Supreme Court cases including Pena Rodriguez v. Colorado, Birchfield v. North Dakota, and Utah v. Strieff and what their outcomes mean for future criminal law cases in Florida.

Denis deVlaming is a criminal defense lawyer. He is board certified in criminal law and has been approved by the Florida Bar to give continuing legal education seminars on every aspect of the criminal trial.

Jun 14, 2018

The Florida Bar has recently focused increasingly on health and wellness and how struggling lawyers can overcome the stigma that keeps them from asking for help. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Judy Rushlow and Molly Paris about Florida Lawyers Assistance Inc. (FLA) and the resources it provides to attorneys with mental health or substance abuse problems. Florida lawyers can find help for any situations, no matter how serious, by calling the hotline.

For lawyers seeking help with wellness issues, call the FLA hotline: 1-800-282-8981

Judy Rushlow, who served as the assistant director of FLA for twenty-two years, was appointed executive director by the Florida Bar Board of Directors in October 2017.

Molly Paris began her work with FLA in September 2017 in the newly and much needed role of outreach coordinator, but transitioned into the assistant director position in October 2017.

Jun 14, 2018

The conversation surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) is shifting from the fear of it replacing human jobs to how firms are using it to streamline their processes. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Eric Ostroff about the impact artificial intelligence will have on the legal profession. They discuss how it can augment your practice by shortening time spent on things like document review and share tips on how to integrate AI into your practice.

Eric Ostroff, a partner at Meland Russin & Budwick, focuses his practice on business litigation and trade-secrets/noncompete law and litigation.

Jun 14, 2018

Cryptocurrency is quickly rising in popularity but should lawyers accept it as payment? In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Drew Hinkes and David Silver about how lawyers can and should interact with cryptocurrency. They discuss the volatile aspects of the technology, how attorneys go about accepting cryptocurrency as payment, and the potential for a legal community coin in the future.

Drew Hinkes is the general counsel, chief legal officer, and co-founder of Athena Blockchain, a financial services advisory firm focused on the tokenization of investments.

David Silver is a founding partner of Silver Miller and is focused exclusively on representing aggrieved investors and cryptocurrency users worldwide who seek to recover their financial losses.

Jun 14, 2018

Though they are still in the early adoption phase, blockchain and smart contract technologies have the potential to change the practice of law. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2018 Florida Bar Annual Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Anessa Santos and Scott AllendeVaux about what blockchain and smart contracts are and how they will automate processes and address problems within the legal profession. They also discuss resources for lawyers interested in incorporating these technologies in their practice and what’s happening in the near future of blockchain and smart contracts.

Attorney Anessa Santos has 15 plus years' experience in the technology field of UC&C, specializing in providing legal and business consulting services.

Scott AllendeVaux is currently the senior partner at Allendevaux & Company, a risk management and regulatory compliance firm.

May 29, 2018

Various committees within the legal profession, such as the ABA’s Mental Health Committee and the Florida Bar’s Special Committee on Mental Health and Wellness, are brainstorming methods to address the increasingly sobering statistics of depression, severe anxiety, and substance abuse among lawyers . In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Joe Ankus about mental health first aid training and how it could positively impact the law firms that use it. They discuss the benefits of non-judgemental and undivided listening and give various other tips for mental health first aid.

Joe Ankus has been a legal search consultant since 1991 and is the president of Ankus Consulting, Inc.

Apr 26, 2018

Identity theft doesn’t just apply to stolen credit cards or social security numbers. For attorneys, scammers can steal names and even bar numbers in order to trick consumers. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Karla Eckardt talk to Shanell Schuyler about attorney identity theft scams, what they look like, and what both lawyers and clients can do to prevent them. For victims of identity theft, they also share resources within and outside of the Florida Bar that can help attorneys recover from and report identity theft.

Shanell Schuyler is director of the Attorney Consumer Assistance Program (ACAP) and Intake Department of The Florida Bar.

Mar 27, 2018

While you hope to never experience workplace violence, it’s important to know what to do in such a situation. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Karla Eckardt talk to Deputy M. Dean Crump about the different kinds of workplace violence and the importance of training employees to handle these issues properly. They discuss how to safely deal with terminations, physical security measures, and how to prepare for an active shooter situation.

Dean Crump is the deputy sheriff for Leon County Sheriff's Office.

Feb 28, 2018

The role of The Florida Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization and Education (BLSE) is to identify the attorneys who have special knowledge, skills, and proficiency in certified areas of practice. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Karla Eckardt talk about the BLSE with Diana Kellogg, Jessica Malloy, and Steven Rubin including what the certification process looks like and why it’s important for attorneys. They discuss the examinations, cost, peer review, ethics evaluations, and other components that make the certification process a valuable learning experience as well as a means for accreditation.

Diana Kellogg is the director of the BLSE.

Jessica R. Malloy is the education compliance and accreditation manager of the BLSE.

Steven D. Rubin is the current chair of BLSE.

Jan 31, 2018

According to a Johns Hopkins University study of more than 100 occupations, more lawyers suffer from depression than any other occupation. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Karla Eckardt discuss lawyer wellbeing with Larry Krieger, who expands on why attorneys often struggle with depression and the wellbeing factors that may lead to satisfaction in a legal career. Together, they also talk about why firms should care about their employees’ happiness and how to create a positive environment.

Professor Larry Krieger co-directs the Externship Program and supervises criminal justice externships at the Florida State University College of Law.

Dec 28, 2017

If you have questions about professional conduct, conflict of interest, or what information you can include in your advertising, The Florida Bar’s Ethics and Advertising Department is there with answers. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Karla Eckardt talk to Elizabeth Clark Tarbert about the Ethics and Advertising Department, including their role with the Bar, common questions they are asked, and why lawyers shouldn’t be afraid to call them for advice. They also discuss advertising rules and how to keep track of these rules as they change.

Elizabeth Clark Tarbert has been ethics counsel for The Florida Bar since 1997, providing oral and written ethics opinions Bar members.

Nov 30, 2017

As the year comes to a close, there are a number of things both large and small firms need to think about, one of these things being insurance policies. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Chip Trefry about end of the year insurance planning for lawyers. They discuss what types of insurance lawyers should think about, including health and cyber insurance, and the details of group coverage and tax benefits.

Earl “Chip” Trefry is the owner and CEO of Member Benefits, a full-service insurance and financial services organization.

Oct 10, 2017

The 2017-2018 Constitution Revision Commission (CRC) is the third of its kind in Florida history. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Mary Adkins, author of the book Making Modern Florida: How the Spirit of Reform Shaped a New Constitution (University Press of Florida, 2016). Professor Adkins has researched the history of the 1968 Florida Constitution and its revisions. Florida is the only state in the nation that offers a process for individuals to speak directly to Commissioners to propose constitutional amendments that could potentially be placed onto Florida’s 2018 General Election ballot for voter consideration. 

Mary Adkins is the director of Legal Writing and Appellate Advocacy and a Master Legal Skills Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law.

Sep 28, 2017

As Hurricane Irma swept through Florida, it left a number of lawyers stranded without their usual resources so the providers of The Florida Bar’s member benefits stepped up, offering free services and access to resources during this time of need. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast recorded at the 2017 Clio Cloud conference, host John Stewart talks to ServeManager’s Trent Carlyle, Fastcase’s Ed Walters, Clio’s Andrew Gay, and Ruby Receptionist’s Austin Lindsey about their products and what their companies are providing to those affected by hurricane Irma. For more details on what services are being provided, see the list below or check out The Florida Bar’s website.

ServeManager

  • 6 months free
  • Concierge service

Fastcase

  • Access to full National Law Library (3 months)

Clio

  • Free 3 month access to Clio

Ruby Receptionists

  • 269 dollars off service
  • Unlimited outbound calling

NetDocuments

  • 3 months free

Trent Carlyle is the CTO and co-founder of Lawgical, parent company of ServeManager.

Ed Walters is the CEO and co-founder of Fastcase, an online legal research software company based in Washington, D.C.

Andrew Gay is a Stanford graduate who was hired by Clio initially as a Support Specialist in 2015, and is now responsible for the leadership and vision of Clio’s Partnerships team.

Austin Lindsey is the corporate concierge at Ruby Receptionist.

Sep 28, 2017

The Attorney Consumer Assistance Program (ACAP) receives around 19,000 to 20,000 calls a year regarding a plethora of complaints like fee disputes or lack of communication. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Shanell Schuyler, director of ACAP, about the most common complaints her office receives and how lawyers can avoid being the cause of these complaints. She also discusses how to handle payment disputes and what to do if clients refuse to pay.

Shanell Schuyler is director of the Attorney Consumer Assistance Program (ACAP) and Intake Department of The Florida Bar.

Aug 28, 2017

The practice of law can be filled with stress and conflict that can have a harmful impact on a lawyer’s wellness. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Scott Rogers about using mindfulness as a way to maintain well-being as a lawyer. They discuss what mindfulness is not, how it affects the brain, and why mindfulness is relevant to lawyers specifically. They also explore the impact of technology on people’s well-being.

Scott Rogers is founder and director of the University of Miami School of Law’s Mindfulness in Law Program where he teaches Mindful Ethics, Mindful Leadership, and Mindfulness in Law and he co-founded the University of Miami’s Mindfulness Research & Practice Initiative.

Jul 28, 2017

Did you know that the Practice Resource Institute (PRI) provides free resources for Florida Bar members? Many Florida attorneys don’t realize the scope of what the PRI offers. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Scott Westheimer about the future of the PRI, the benefits of being a member, and how the program has grown. They also talk about both the Program Evaluation Committee and the Member Benefits Committee, what they are, and how they function within The Florida Bar.

Scott Westheimer is a partner at Syprett, Meshad, Resnick, Lieb, Dumbaugh, Jones, Krotec & Westheimer and currently serves as the chairman of the Communications Committee and serves on the Executive Committee, Program Evaluation Committee, Technology Committee, and Strategic Planning Committee with The Florida Bar.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Barbara Leach talks to Tom Julin, Dana McElroy, Rick Ovelmen, and Howard Wasserman about the First Amendment, including a couple relevant cases and the potential impact of the Trump administration.

Barbara Leach is the managing attorney of Barbara Leach Law, PL. She practices family law, consumer bankruptcy, and civil litigation.

Tom Julin is a partner at Gunster Yoakley & Stewart and has litigated free speech issues of almost every type in Florida and around the country.

Dana McElroy is a partner in Thomas & LoCicero’s Fort Lauderdale office. She practices at the trial and appellate levels, handling a wide range of matters involving media and communications law.

For more than 30 years, Richard J. Ovelmen has practiced constitutional, land-use, local government, media, class action, and intellectual property law.

Professor Howard Wasserman teaches civil procedure, evidence, federal courts, civil rights, and First Amendment at Florida International University.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, special guest host and future president-elect of The Florida Bar Michelle Suskauer interviews current president and president-elect Bill Schifino and Michael Higer. In their discussion they share experiences, advice, and priorities for this coming year, including a focus on health and wellness.

Michelle Suskauer is a West Palm Beach Criminal Lawyer and an AV Preeminent rated attorney by Martindale-Hubbell.

Bill Schifino is managing partner of Burr & Forman LLP’s Tampa office and a board-certified specialist in the area of business litigation.

Michael Higer is a partner of Berger Singerman’s Dispute Resolution Team and is an experienced litigator and trial lawyer who has devoted his practice to commercial litigation and civil trial work.

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