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28 Int'l L. News 1 (1999)

handle is hein.journals/inrnlwnw28 and id is 1 raw text is: VOL. 28 NO.I


Are You Ready for Specialization?
By Timothy E. Powers and Andrew J. Mark us

To Specialize or Not to Specialize-
That Is the Question
ur Section will formally be requested
within the next several months to sup-
port the development and implementa-
tion of a program sponsored by the American
Bar Association that will certify specialists in
various areas of prac-
tice. The issue of spe-
cialization in interna-
tional law has been
debated    among     our
Section leadership, and
we now turn to you for
your insights and input.
The American Bar Associa-
tion is supportive of efforts to
expand opportunities for
lawyers to achieve recogni-
tion of enhanced skill, exper-
tise, and experience in areas
of specialized practice. To this
end, the ABAs Standing Com-
mittee on Specialization has
proposed the establishment
of a specialty certification
program. The goal of the pro-
posed program is to foster
professionalism by allowing
lawyers to become Board cer-

tified in areas of specialized practice. The proposal would
call for our Section's support for the creation of a high
quality specialty certification program in international law,
which would be designed, sponsored, and approved by
our Section.
It is believed that Board certification of specialists
would provide an objective measure of reasonable profes-
sional proficiency and address a genuine public need for
better information on the qualifications and capabilities of
lawyers. The ABA believes
that there are not enough
state-sponsored nor accredit-
ed private certification pro-
grams available for practicing
lawyers in the United States.
Therefore, the ABA is consid-
ering the establishment of its
own program.
Certification Requirements
Under currently proposed
ABA guidelines, the mini-
mum requirements for certi-
fication as an international
specialist would be as fol-
H At least 25 percent of full-
time practice must be
devoted to international
* Complete at least 36
hours of CLE in interna-
tional law in the three
continued on page 24

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