Thursday, May 14, 2009

Continuing Legal Education

Last week, I attended the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Advance-Level Family Law Seminar and saw many familiar Judges, referees and attorneys. I also made a mental note about who I didn't see. There were many.

It may be hard to believe, but, unlike a physician, there is no requirement for a lawyer to maintain his license with continuing legal education (CLE).

The law, like medicine is dynamic. It changes. I have been a speaker at a CLE seminar and attended them. In both cases, I always learn something new. The something new may be clarity of a nuance in the law or even information about new family law legislation in congress.

In either case, I always leave knowing I am a better lawyer.

The latest CLE was no different. I left with new information regarding a change in an IRS regulation that will have a dramatic effect on the allocation of the dependency exemption in divorce cases with minor children.

I believe, CLE should be mandatory to maintain currency as a family law attorney. If given the option, too many lawyers take the easy way out. So, who pays the cost? The client.


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