Articles in regional publications that pertain to a wide range of North Carolina-related topics.
for North Carolina State Bar Journal Vol. 21 Issue 4, Winter 2016
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Irvine’s article, describing the 2016 North Carolina Legal Services Conference proceedings, included information about the organization being celebrated for its work in North Carolina and the conference’s host, the Equal Justice Alliance. Highlighted among her description of this conference was the collaboration mission of Southern Coalition for Social Justice and Equal Justice Alliance’s member organizations such as Disability Rights North Carolina. It is to help assure that low income individuals in the state may also receive necessary legal services.
The title, alluding to the 12 jury members who have historically presided over superior court criminal trials, may be an outdated practice, with the passing of the amendment that favors such cases being decided by a judge only. Following a two-part explanation of this amendment were reasons that argue against its adoption, such as possible expansion of a preferential practice known as “judge shopping.” Reasons that favor the passage of Amendment NC Gen. Stat. 15A-1201 included the costliness of juried trials and high conflict cases that receive pre-trial publicity that hinders the case.
Encouraging these members of the legal community to seek help for mental health and/or substance abuse issues was Lever’s information about NC LAP. Highlighted were three facts: all communications with LAP are confidential; it is separate from the disciplinary arm of the State Bar; its website contains a wealth of information about LAP’s services. Also noted were research studies that confirm the substantial percentage of lawyers who experience mental health and/or substance abuse issues and their common barriers to treatment.
The use of collaborative law, formerly confined to domestic disputes, could be expanded to include civil disputes, thanks to the workshop the authors were proposing. Their workshop would convey criteria that lawyers may use to determine if a case can be settled outside of court. Other information lending understanding of collaborative law was a discussion of the negotiation model and example cases.