Thursday, August 7, 2014

Save the Date: Bench Bar Conference, Membership Luncheon & Judicial Reception - October 30

By Judges Samantha Ward and Caroline Tesche, Thirteenth Judicial Circuit

The Hillsborough County Bar Association and its Bench Bar Committee co-chairs, Judges Samantha Ward and Caroline Tesche, are proud to announce the 18th Annual Bench Bar Conference. The focus of this year’s conference is on the many practical, legal, and ethical considerations facing us all as we deal with the myriad of challenges brought about by the advancement of electronic communications technology. We will be considering the vast advancements in social media, electronic filing systems, and the expanded use of electronic evidence both pre-trial and at trial.

We believe that the curriculum for this year’s conference is particularly timely and relevant, given changes and potential challenges to the Florida evidence code and advancements in many areas of electronic technology. After our morning “ethics-themed” breakfast, the morning and afternoon break-out sessions promise to be both substantive and practical. We are adding a United States Supreme Court Update session this year, as well as a “Kids in the Court” practical session to discuss the myriad of issues facing children in the many divisions of our court system.

We are excited to continue our innovative “view to the bench” sessions, providing lawyers and judges the opportunity to candidly discuss practice-specific topics in round-table discussions. Breaking out by areas of practice, we seek to diverge from the typical “view from the bench” and get real-life practical input from the litigants to the judges.  This year’s segments will add probate and appellate sessions to the civil, family, criminal, and federal/bankruptcy sessions already planned.

This year, we are honored to be joined by Professor Charles W. Ehrhardt, certainly one of our country’s premier authorities on evidence, for the afternoon plenary session. He, along with several other distinguished guests, will provide valuable insight into contemporary issues regarding the complex legal landscape of the capabilities and limitations of electronic technology in the practice of law.

The Bench Bar Conference is the premiere HCBA learning event of the year, and as always, the committee seeks to keep the channels of communication open between the bench and bar, with its primary focus on improving the justice system. Working together, we can make positive changes in our court system. Please join us as we continue to strengthen the bond between the bench and bar, and to prepare the system to best meet the coming external and internal challenges to our profession. In the spirit of collaboration between the bench and bar, we invite you to join us at the Judicial Reception, which will immediately follow the conference.

So please save the date for the Bench Bar Conference, Membership Luncheon & Judicial Reception on October 30. Look out for more information about specific course offerings and registration instructions in email blasts from the HCBA and on the HCBA website. We look forward to seeing you!