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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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The Florida Bar Podcast
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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.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Joe Corsmeier about social media and the ethical considerations lawyers need to make when using it. They discuss conflicts of interest, maintaining separate professional and personal accounts, and how to effectively use social media to market your legal practice.

Joseph Corsmeier is an AV-rated attorney practicing in Clearwater, Florida.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, special host Michael Higer talks to Judge Michelle Sisco, Richard Levenstein, Stephen Ware, Dean Cannon, and Brian Fitzpatrick about the Constitution Revision Commission and its potential proposals. They cover the selection process for judges and term limits.

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.

Judge Michelle Sisco sits in the 13th Judicial Circuit Court in Tampa, Florida, and is the incoming chair of The Florida Bar’s Constitutional Judiciary Committee.

Richard Levenstein is the past vice chair of the Constitutional Judiciary Committee and a charter original member of the committee.

Stephen Ware is a professor of law at the University of Kansas where his interests include judicial selection, alternative dispute resolution, commercial law, and private law generally.

Dean Cannon is the executive vice president and statewide chair of government affairs at GrayRobinson.

Brian Fitzpatrick is a professor of law at Vanderbilt Law School. His research at Vanderbilt focuses on class action litigation, federal courts, judicial selection, and constitutional law.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Liz McCausland reviews updates in the field of bankruptcy with Barbara Leach. They dive into topics like exemptions, debt payment using credit cards, and student loan dischargeability.

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

Liz McCausland is an experienced attorney and Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil Mediator.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Laurence Colletti reviews updates in the field of employment with Kevin Johnson, including a couple specific cases and how they’ve affected the law. They include Schaefer v. Walker Bros, Mercedes-Benz v. International Union, UAW, and other cases that dive into topics like telecommuting, arbitration agreements, and overtime rules.

Kevin Johnson is a labor and employment law attorney with the law firm of Thompson Sizemore Gonzalez & Hearing in Tampa, Florida.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Laurence Colletti reviews updates in the field of criminal law with Denis deVlaming, including listing a couple specific cases and their effect on the law. Some of these cases include Hurst v. Florida, Miller v. Alabama, and other cases that dig into topics like racial bias and the obtaining of blood samples.

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 23, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Suzanne Clark and Park McManis about electronic discovery and digital evidence. Their discussion includes why it’s important for lawyers to know about e-discovery and resources for those interested in using e-discovery, including the Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists.

Suzanne Clark concentrates her legal practice in commercial and business litigation and cybersecurity law.

Parke McManis is an attorney, MBA, Relativity Certified Administrator (RCA), and Certified E-Discovery Specialist (CEDS).

Jun 22, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Wayne Bell about the advantages of making a website homepage more relatable. They discuss the need for personality and human connection even if it is through a screen.

Jun 22, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Christine Falcicchio, Ian O’Flaherty, and Tara Cheever about their new apps created specifically for lawyers. These apps that assist with things like evidence presentation and document review, are among other easy-to-use technology that can be used by lawyers in court.

Christine Falcicchio is a principal at Strut Legal, Inc. She has been managing the creation of eBrief projects since 2005.

Ian O’Flaherty is the founder and CEO of LIT SOFTWARE, LLC which has designed and developed the leading and award-winning legal specific apps available for iPad: TrialPad, TranscriptPad, and DocReviewPad.

Tara Cheever is the product manager at LIT SOFTWARE, LLC.

Jun 22, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Jonathon Israel talks to Richard Granat about having a secure client portal as part of your law firm website. They also discuss how, in order to achieve success in a competitive market, law firms have to take advantage of technology that enables them to reach customers that weren’t previously served.

Richard Granat is a lawyer and a recognized expert on the delivery of legal services over the internet.

Jun 22, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Lawrence Kunin and Serge Jorgensen about data security breaches and the legal implications of such a breach. They also discuss the ethical obligations of an attorney in regards to data security, as well as signs that reveal when a firm has been breached.

Larry Kunin is a partner in Morris Manning & Martin’s Litigation practice and serves as chair of the firm’s Data Security and Breach practice.

Serge Jorgensen is president and a founding partner of the Sylint Group. He provides strategic guidance and active oversight in computer security.

Jun 22, 2017

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast from the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention, host Christine Bilbrey talks to Jacey Kaps, Chip Trefry, and Scott Reid about how having cyber and data protection can be just as important as locking your door. They discuss insurance options and prevention methods, including training staff to identify and handle potential threats.

Jacey Kaps is a partner and executive committee member at Rumberger, Kirk & Caldwell.

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

Scott Reid is currently the national director of cyber insurance for Gallagher Affinity Insurance Services and the executive director for the American Cyber and Data Security Alliance.

Jun 21, 2017

This year’s coverage of the 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention kicks off with host Christine Bilbrey talking to keynote speaker Chief Justice Jorge Labarga about what's included in his speech. The main topic is maintaining open lines of communication between branches of government. They also discuss extending term limits for supreme and appellate court judges and role of the Constitutional Revision Commission.

Jorge Labarga is a Justice of the Florida Supreme Court, taking office on January 6, 2009. On June 30, 2014, he was sworn in as Florida’s 56th Chief Justice and the first Cuban-American to hold the post.

Jun 5, 2017

The 2017 Annual Florida Bar Convention is fast approaching, taking place on June 21-24 at the Boca Raton Resort. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Melanie Griffin, chair of the Annual Convention Committee, about what this year’s convention will look like including technology CLEs, president showcase seminars, and networking opportunities in the form of nightly receptions. They also discuss the different activities planned for the kids that tag along with their parents which involve lots and lots of ice cream. Tune in for details on the new registering process for those interested in attending.

Melanie Griffin is the Tampa Office Managing Shareholder of the Dean Mead Law Firm. In this position she has achieved multiple courtroom and settlement victories including championing commercial litigation, intellectual property, and labor and employment issues for Florida businesses.

May 25, 2017

Running a law firm entails a lot more than practicing law; it involves marketing, employee management, and utilizing analytics. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Evan Parker, managing director at Lawyer Metrics, about the four common issues he sees law firms struggling with: the business behind law, hiring the right person the first time, managing employees, and lack of diversity. He shares how Lawyer Metrics typically aids with these challenges and how analytic data can be used as a factual foundation to guide toward solutions.

Dr. Evan Parker is managing director of Analytics & Research at Lawyer Metrics, LLC. He is an expert in using large-scale data to produce business insights and inform strategic decision-making.

Apr 27, 2017

Chances are, you’re at least vaguely familiar with the term “virtual lawyer”, but what is a virtual lawyer and what does it mean to move your practice online? In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Richard Granat about what a virtual law practice looks like, the major drivers in the switch to online services, and the learning requirements of making your own practice a virtual one. To clarify, technology should be used in conjunction with a traditional practice rather than lawyers simply disappearing behind a screen. According to Richard, legal professionals should establish their business model and find the online resources to meet their particular needs rather than simply diving into technology.

Richard Granat is a lawyer and a recognized expert on the delivery of legal services over the internet. He has served as Co-Director of the Center for Law Practice Technology, Florida Coastal School of Law.

Mar 28, 2017

Ediscovery is an industry that is constantly shifting and evolving as technology changes. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to electronic discovery expert William Hamilton about using ediscovery and how the legal industry is adapting to growing technology. Their discussion includes the different ediscovery products available, sanctions, interactions with social media, and resources you can use to keep up with all aspects of ediscovery.

William Hamilton is an electronic discovery expert. He is currently the executive director of the UF Law E-Discovery Project and International Center for Automated Information Retrieval.

Feb 28, 2017

What if there was a way to practice law and only spend five dollars a day running your business? Would you believe it? In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel talk to Rick Georges, a solo practitioner practicing in St. Petersburg, Florida, about how he uses technology to run his business effectively and cheaply. Some of his methods are as simple as using software to take care of administrative tasks, like switching to online banking. In their discussion, they also talk about security measures that those using technology need to take, like encrypting emails and protecting accounts with two-factor identification.

Rick Georges is a solo practitioner, practicing in St. Petersburg, Florida. He is active in the St. Petersburg Bar Association, Florida Bar, and American Bar Association, and presents seminars and programs on the use of computers in the practice of law.

Jan 30, 2017

If you want a consultation with attorney Andrew LeGrand, you can set up a date, time, and cover the cost without ever talking to him. Andrew, founder of Spera Law Group, is a master at technology shortcuts and, in this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, he shares with hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel the apps he uses to save him time. From phone answering services to shareable calendars, law professionals can use these sources to save them time and money.

Andrew Legrand is the founder of Spera Law Group, LLC, a cloud and paperless law firm in New Orleans, Louisiana. He helps small business owners create and protect successful companies.

Dec 27, 2016

Noory Bechor was doing business law for a big law firm in Israel when he came to the realization that lawyers’ process is far too inefficient. So he came up with LawGeex, a cloud-based artificial intelligence program that uses machine learning to help revolutionize the legal world. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, Noory joins hosts Christine Bilbrey and Jonathon Israel to discuss how LawGeex works and how this and other artificial intelligence will continue to make lawyers more efficient, without replacing their jobs. Tune in for a clear explanation of the way machine learning works and how it replaces simple, repetitious tasks like drafting contracts.

Noory Bechor is the CEO and founder of LawGeeks. As a former commercial lawyer, he combines his years of experience with his entrepreneurial spirit to help other lawyers #lovelegalagain, making their work easy, efficient, and even more impactful.

Nov 29, 2016

The practice of law is a profession that is constantly evolving and one that requires continued training and education to stay on the cutting edge of legal trends. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Jonathon Israel and Christine Bilbrey talk with Third Judicial Circuit in North Central Florida General Magistrate Jennifer Kuyrkendall about the upcoming Florida Bar Tech Show and why office managers, paralegals, law students, and lawyers should attend.

Jennifer Kuyrkendall is the General Magistrate for the Third Judicial Circuit in North Central Florida. She also sits on the Executive Council of the Solo & Small Firm Section where she currently serves as secretary and chair of The Florida Bar Tech Show: Riding the Technology Wave.

Oct 25, 2016

As technology becomes more integrated into the daily tasks of lawyers around the world, new and innovative ways to improve the practice of law will continue to emerge. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Jonathon Israel and Christine Bilbrey talk with eFileMadeEasy President Dario Diaz about the history of e-filing, Metadata, and tips to help attorneys improve their e-filing process.

Dario Diaz is the owner and managing partner of the law office of Dario Diaz PA in Tampa, FL. In 2014 Dario was named to The Florida Bar Technology Committee and now stands as the vice-chair on that committee. He is also the president of Legal Automation Systems Inc. which created eFileMadeEasy.

The Practice Resource Institute is the law office and law practice management service of The Florida Bar. For assistance, contact the Bar’s Practice Resource Institute to speak with a practice management advisor. PRI can be reached from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, via phone at 866-730-2020, email at prisupport@flabar.org, or live chat via the PRI website at ‪http://pri.floridabar.org.

Sep 30, 2016

Some small law firms and solo practitioners feel that their practice and available revenue is too small to invest resources into cyber security protections. In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Jonathon Israel and Christine Bilbrey talk with Shook, Hardy & Bacon partner Al Saikali about helping lawyers assess their security risk and why cyber security is important even for the smallest firms.

Aug 5, 2016

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, hosts Renee Thompson and John Stewart talk with The Florida Bar Board of Governors Eighth Judicial Circuit representative Carl Schwait about the legislative amendments recently made to rule 4-7.22. Carl explains that the relationship of lawyers to clients and their procurement is much more guided through the internet today than it has been ever before. This shift in how the public seeks out legal services has brought a whole new group of for-profit companies and corporations into the legal marketplace whose chief aim is to match lawyers and clients. The Florida Bar declared a few issues that these changes now present to rule 4-7.22 and The Florida Supreme Court did not agree with some of these stated issues requesting that the bar go back and reevaluate the rule. Carl explains that their goal was to prevent for-profit matching services from arguing with the board of governors over whether they were a directory, a lawyer referral service, or some other entity and that most of these organizations didn’t want to be classified as lawyer referral services at all. The bar wanted to do away with all naming conventions and solidify the classification of these companies as qualifying providers so that every entity or person who was in the business of matching attorneys and clients would all fall within their rules. He emphasizes that The Florida Bar does not oversee qualifying providers and that their rules are to the lawyers who participate in this matching program in order to better protect the public. Carl closes the interview with an analysis of how these changes impact voluntary bar lawyer referral services, why the malpractice insurance requirement was removed, and how The Florida Bar might proceed if The Florida Supreme Court asked for oral arguments on these rules.

Carl Schwait is a North Central Florida mediator, businessperson, educator, Florida Bar leader and former public servant. Rated AV by Martindale-Hubbell and named to Florida’s Super Lawyers® for the last nine years, he has been a member of The Bar for over 39 years.

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