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44 Fla. B. News 1 (2017)

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Volume 44, Number I


floridabar-org


   Two  members  of The
Florida  Bar  Board   of
Governors have qualified to
run for president-elect in the
March Bar elections,
   Lansing Lanse Scriven,
a commercial litigator and
appellate lawyer at Trenam
Law, a 100-plus member law
firm in Tampa, and Michelle
Suskaner, a criminal defense
attorney in a two-lawyer
office in West Palm Beach.
filed qualifying papers by the
December 15 deadline.
   've always had a strong
commitment to service
and, in particular, the legal
profession. I care deeply
about the profession and
the important role lawyers
play in society, and the
public's perception of the
profession, said 54-year-old


January 1, 2017


Scriven, a 13th Circuit board
member. who  is married to
Judge Maw  Scriven. of the
U.S. District Court. Middle
District of Florida.
   We're going through
some  very difficult times
as a profession, and I think
we need leadership that is
thoughtful, unflappable, and
strong. I think I am that
person.
   Callingherself passionate


about bar service since
she was a young assistant
public defender, and  a
tireless advocate for the
legal profession, 50-year-
old Suskaner describes her
desire to nm for Bar president
as a natural progression in
her career.
   I am a trial attorney. I
have a small practice. I am a
mother of two. My husband
sits on the bench. Having nm
a small practice for as many
years as I have, I understand
what it is like to have those
daily pressures of generating
business, competing in the
marketplace,  balancing
family while you participate
in the legal community,
and knowing how  to make

   See  Election, page 7


ABA's Free Lega Answers provide

information to low-incorne consumers


Still time to apply for Bar committees
   The annual committee preference forns for Bar members seeking
appoinIments for the tenn of President-elect Michael Higer are available
at floridabar.org.
   As president-elect, Higer will make 500 or so committee appointments,
and he wants to make sure he has a diverse group of lawyers front which
to choose.
   It is a pnvilege to practice law in this slate, and with that pivilege
comes a responsibility, Higer said. We need the active engagement of
our membership to work together to address the many challenges facing

                                    See  Committees,  page 9        HIGER


By Gary  Blankenship
Senior Editor
   The   Florida Bar
is exploring  joining  a
nationwide ABA program to
provide online legal answers
to low-income consumers.
   At its recent Clearwaler
meeting.  the Board   of
Governors  unanimousiv
voted   to  accept  the
recommendation of its
Program Evaluation
Committee to negotiate with
the ABA  to jjoin its Free
Legal Answers program.
   This  is an  online
platform where low-income
individuals can  contact
lawyers and receive limited
answers  to a  series of
questions, said PEC Chair
Michael TRanner in explaining


the program, which is a bit
like an online version of
help booths voluntary bars
set up at local malls to assist
the public. PEC  voted
unanimously to proceed with
this, at least to negotiate a
license agreement with the
ABA.
   The  ABA   effort  is
based on a pilot program
in Tennessee that provided
help to 12,500 people over
the past five years. It now
has been adopted infive other
states and is being considered
in most other states.
   This is not a lawyer
referral service.  It is
en irely online, and eligible
individuals are limited to
three unique legal questions
per year that can be posed


by the client
to the lawyer
online It is
conisistent
with  all of
the efforts
we    h av e
heard about
on   legal
access,
Tanner said.
   He  said the approval
will allow Ihe Bar to work
with the ABA to utilize the
ABA  platforn in Florida
to provide the same service,
The implementation phase.
he said after the meeting,
will likely take two or three
months, and then the service
could  begin in Florida

   See Answers,  page  8


Thousands of dollars

in  savings are available

   From sending packages to sending flowers, from
booking hotels to searching case law, from refinancing
student loans to buying car insurance, The Florida Bar
Member  Benefits Program is ready to save you money.
   Tap into more than 60 free or discounted choices
more than offered by any olher state bar ----- by visiting
www.iloridabar.org/mnemnberbenefits.
   A new lhperinked member  benefit brochure was
recently released, and the 'oal of the Member Benefits
Committee is to transition the member benefits page of
The Florida Bar website to replicate the new brochure.
   We are hopeful that the updated page on the Bar
websile will become available in the spring of 2017,
said Terry Hill, division director of programs at the
Bar. Not only will it be more aesthetically pleasing,
but  uich easier to navigate through the numerons
offerings.
   The committee works diligently to identify potential
discounted member benefits to Bar members that they
will find useful in their professional and personal
lives, said Duke Fagan, chair of the Member Benefits
Committee.
   The committee reviewed about 30 proposals in
the last I8 mouths, vetting each proposal through the
committee before making any recommendation to the
                        See  Benefits, page 11


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for Bar presidentmelect

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