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August 24, 2009

NEW YORK STATE BAR ASSOCIATION OFFERS FREE CLE COURSE FOR LAWYERS INTERESTED IN PROVIDING PRO BONO REPRESENTATION TO INDIVIDUALS FILING FOR BANKRUPTCY

Program Will Link Participating Lawyers With Individuals in Need of Pro Bono Bankruptcy Representation

ALBANY - With the economy forcing an increasing number of New Yorkers to consider bankruptcy, and, at the same time, an increased number of lawyers interested in taking on pro bono projects, the New York State Bar Association is co-sponsoring an initiative that will provide training on new developments in bankruptcy law to lawyers and then link them with individuals who would not otherwise be able to afford legal representation. 

In partnership with the Albany County Bar Association, Capital Region Bankruptcy Bar Association, the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Inc. and The Legal Project, the State Bar Association will host a free Continuing Legal Education (CLE) program for lawyers on September 25th from 9:00 a.m.- 2:30 p.m. at the State Bar Center at One Elk Street in Albany. In addition to taking the training course, to receive full CLE credit, lawyers will agree to accept one pro bono bankruptcy referral each from the Albany County Bar Association, the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Inc. and The Legal Project for a total of three cases annually.  Participating attorneys will receive four New York State CLE credits, consisting of three in Skills and one in Ethics

"The current economic downturn has sharply increased the number of bankruptcy filings and therefore increased demand for attorneys with the most up-to-date understanding on all the intricacies of bankruptcy law," said President Michael E. Getnick (Getnick Livingston Atkinson & Priore, LLP of Utica and of counsel to Getnick & Getnick of New York City). "At the same time, more and more individuals - particularly those in need of bankruptcy protection - are unable to afford appropriate legal counsel. This program will help put people in need together with lawyers who can help them."

Speakers will include the Hon. Robert E. Littlefield, Jr., U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge for the Northern District of New York; Anthony Arcodia, Jr., Ehrlich & Arcodia, PC; Marc S. Ehrlich, Ehrlich & Arcodia, PC; Michael J. O'Connor, O'Connor, O'Connor, Bresee & First, PC. 

For more information or for lawyers who wish to register, visit www.nysba.org/representingprobonodebtor or contact (518) 435-1770.

Individuals in need of representation should contact any one of the three participating organizations: the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Inc., The Legal Project, or the Albany County Bar Association. 

The 76,000-member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New York and the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. Founded in 1876, State Bar programs and activities have continuously served the public and improved the justice system for more than 130 years.

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