Public Policy Update from the State Bar of Michigan
September 5-11, 2011
Volume 9 Issue 37

FOCUS: State Bar of Michigan Annual Meeting in Dearborn, September 14-16, 2011
Join us for the following events and more! Information on the Annual Meeting Events
Wednesday, September 14, 6:30–8:30 pm
State Bar of Michigan Awards Banquet

Thursday, September 15, 10:00 am–12:00 pm
Equal Access Initiative Disabilities Work Group Program: DNR Decisions Impacting Person with Disabilities

Thursday, September 15, 12:00–2:00 pm
State Bar Inaugural Luncheon: Swearing in of New President Julie I. Fershtman & New Officers

Thursday, September 15, 6:30–8:30 pm
Celebrating Diversity Reception
The Justice Initiatives community is once again hosting an event to celebrate the rich diversity of the bar. The reception will also acknowledge the work accomplished over the year in support of achieving greater diversity and inclusion in the Michigan legal profession.

Friday, September 16, 12:00–2:00 pm
State Bar of Michigan Legal Milestone Dedication Luncheon
After 25 years of recognizing significant legal cases and placing bronze plaques all round the state to commemorate these cases, the Michigan Legal Milestone program is still going strong. This 36th dedication will feature a historic case from southeast Michigan, Milliken v Bradley, which went all the way to the United States Supreme Court. A panel of knowledgeable and eloquent speakers will recall the case and discuss its continuing impact on Detroit.

In the Capitol
Committee Meetings of Interest for the Week of 9/12
9/13 Senate Judiciary
Agenda: SB 551 Prohibit possession or use of cellular telephone or wireless device by prisoner in correctional facility, and provide penalties; SB 552 Amend 1981 PA 7 to prohibit distribution, possession, or use of cellular telephone or other wireless communication device in a jail and provide a penalty; SB 539 Allow appointment in this state of guardians and conservators appointed in other jurisdictions; SB 353 Include any intoxicating substance in definition of "operating while intoxicated"; SB 269 Revise limitation on recovery amount in small claims suits; And any other business to come properly before the committee.
SBM Position on SB 269: Support a modest increase to the jurisdictional limit in small claims court based on inflation and to schedule future increases.
Probate & Estate Planning SectionPosition on SB 539: Support

9/13 Senate Appropriations: Corrections
Agenda: Public Testimony.

9/15 House Judiciary
Agenda: HB 4074 Require certain prisoner reentry programs, including issuance of identification card and copies of other identifying documents, and require prisoners to obtain certain records; HB 4075 Include corrections identification card forms of identification necessary to apply for a state identification card and allow access to certain department of corrections data; HB 4076 Include corrections identification card in forms of identification necessary to apply for driver license; HB 4077 Assist convicted persons in obtaining certain records necessary to obtain identification documents.
SBM Position on HB 4074–HB 4077: Support
Criminal Jurisprudence & Practice Committee Position on HB 4074–HB 4077: Support

Complete Committee Meeting List

New Public Acts

Legislation Introduced 9/7–9/8
View all bills introduced 9/7–9/8

Of Interest to the Legal Community
HB 4906 State; symbol; English; establish as the official state language. Creates new act.

HB 4928 Property; other; affidavits to correct errors or omissions relating to previously recorded documents; allow. Amends 1915 PA 123 (MCL 565.451a565.453) by adding sec. 1d.

SB 0630 Criminal procedure; probation; retention and release of nonpublic records of an arrest, diversion, discharge, or dismissal of certain controlled substance cases; clarify. Amends sec. 1070 of 1961 PA 236 (MCL 600.1070).

SB 0631 Criminal procedure; probation; retention of nonpublic records during period of diversion for a controlled substance violation; clarify. Amends sec. 350a of 1931 PA 328 (MCL 750.350a).

SB 0632 Criminal procedure; probation; retention of nonpublic records during period of diversion for a controlled substance violation; require. Amends sec. 7411 of 1978 PA 368 (MCL 333.7411).

SB 0633 Criminal procedure; probation; retention of nonpublic records during period of diversion for certain crimes; clarify. Amends sec. 4a, ch. IX of 1927 PA 175 (MCL 769.4a).

Of General Interest
HB 4895 Insurance; no-fault; indemnification by Michigan catastrophic claims association; prohibit reduction in payment to members because of recovery from other sources. Amends sec. 3104 of 1956 PA 218 (MCL 500.3104).

SB 0618 Education; public school academies; revisions to provisions concerning formation, operation, and termination of public school academies, urban high school academies, and schools of excellence; provide for, and allow school districts to contract with outside entity for provision of teachers. Amends secs. 501, 502, 502a, 503, 504, 505, 507, 522, 523, 524, 528, 551, 552, 553, 553a, 556, 559, 561 & 1231 of 1976 PA 451 (MCL 380.501 et seq.); adds sec. 1231a & repeals sec. 501a of 1976 PA 451 (MCL 380.501a).

In the Hall of Justice
Proposed Attorney Ethics Rule Changes on Agenda of Michigan Supreme Court's September 28 Public Administrative Hearing

At the Bar
"Lawyer Trust Accounts: Management Principles & Recordkeeping Resources" Set for October 4 in E. Lansing

SBM Officers Elected for 2011-2012

FOCUS: The Board of Commissioners met on September 7, 2011 at which time the State Bar of Michigan adopted the following Public Policy positions:

ADM File No. 2010-12—Proposed Amendment of Rule 606 of the Michigan Rules of Evidence and Proposed Amendment of Rule 2.512 of the Michigan Court Rules
This proposal is intended to provide guidance (similar to FRE 606[b]) about the scope of inquiry that jurors may be subject to following a verdict and establish a procedure by which postverdict contact with jurors may be sought.
SBM Position: Support amendment to MRE 606; Oppose amendments to MCR 2.512.

ADM File No. 2010-19—Proposed Amendment of Subchapter 7.100 of the Michigan Court Rules
This proposal was submitted to the Court in May 2010 by the Circuit Court Appellate Rules Revision Committee. The committee was comprised of appellate practice attorneys and judges (including circuit, district, and Court of Appeals judges). It is published for comment as submitted.
SBM Position: Support. Concur with comments provide by Ms. Victoria Katz.

Rescission of Amendment of Rule 7.3 of the Michigan Rules of Professional Conduct and Proposed Amendment of Rule 7.3 of the Michigan Rules of Professional Conduct
Under the proposed amendments, MRPC 7.3 would be reformatted and would describe the general prohibition regarding a lawyer's solicitation, and also would describe the types of communication that are allowed, including a lawyer's general advertising, and a lawyer's targeted communications to potential clients who are facing legal problems (as protected by Shapero v Kentucky Bar Ass'n, 486 US 466 [1988]). The proposed amendments of MRPC 7.3 would require that inclusion of the designation "Advertising Material" on general advertising and targeted communications applies only to written materials, including e-mailed communications, but not to television or radio advertisements. The amendment also requires a 30-day period to pass before an attorney may contact a potential client after a death, injury, or accident.
SBM Position: Oppose proposed changes to MRPC 7.3.

HB 4703 (Scott) Corrections; parole; notification to prosecuting attorney of a prisoner's parole; revise requirements for. Amends sec. 36 of 1953 PA 232 (MCL 791.236).
SBM Position: Support.

SB 0547 (Moolenaar) Family law; child custody; child parenting plan; require in child custody disputes. Amends title and secs. 1, 2, 4 & 11 of 1970 PA 91 (MCL 722.21 et seq.) & adds sec. 5a.
SBM Position: Oppose.

Federal News
U.S. Rep. Fred Upton: Michigan Has Most at Stake in Deficit Reduction Plans
(Detroit Free Press, 9/8/11)

State News
Court to Revisit Affirmative Action Ruling
(Detroit News, 9/10/11)

Michigan Court Weighs Whether Law Creates Graduated Income Tax
(Detroit News, 9/8/11)

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder to Launch Fall Agenda
(Lansing State Journal, 9/7/11)

Links of Interest
Public Policy Resource Center | Michigan Supreme Court | Michigan Legislature | MCL Search Engines