Closeup of Vote by Mail envelope

A Brief Legal History of Washington’s Vote-By-Mail System

For weeks, the national discourse has been embroiled in battles over the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and the upcoming general election. Amidst an ongoing health calamity, people in the U.S. and around the world question how America will pull off a national election not so much from the ballot box but from the mailbox. A Brief Legal History of Washington’s Vote-By-Mail System.

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Ruth Bader Ginsburg

I Dissent: The Legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Perhaps the most impactful of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s famous dissents came in a case about gender pay inequity in the workplace: Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., 550 U.S. 618 (2007). Plaintiff Lilly Ledbetter began working as a supervisor at the Goodyear Tire plant in Gadsen, Alabama, in 1979. She worked there for 19 years and for most of that time was the only woman manager.

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Legal Scale

How to Find a Lawyer Using WSBA’s Legal Directory

Recently, the Washington State Bar Association updated our Legal Directory — a searchable database of every legal professional in the state of Washington—to make it easier to use and with a few expanded features to provide additional information when you’re researching a lawyer. Read on to learn how to use the Legal Directory to find a lawyer and how to access additional resources to get connected with affordable legal help.

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Law student masked

What it’s Like Being a WSBA Law School Representative During Strange Times

Faced with a global pandemic, a massive civil rights movement, uncertain economic futures, and most recently a blanketing of smoke as much of the Western United States burns, it’s no small feat to manage three years of intensive legal study on top of that. Even so, this year, as in years past, student representatives from Washington’s three law schools have partnered with the WSBA to serve as a vital link between their classmates and (hopefully) future professional regulator. Read on to learn what’s on the minds of the 2020-2021 law school representatives.

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Cover of Bar News Sept 2020

The Who’s Who of Bar News

You might not know much about the members of the Editorial Advisory Committee (EAC), what they do to help produce this award-winning magazine, or even the thought process that guides all editorial content—until now. In the September issue of Bar News we peek behind the curtain to learn more about the EAC, the members who comprise it, and what each member’s process is for taking content from ideation to publication.

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A lawyer with a briefcase and a surgical mask

On-Demand Office Environments for Legal Business

There are many options when it comes to on-demand office space. You can rent a conference room or a private office to limit access from other people. Or you can with other remote employees. Attorney Yuriy Moshes offers a few things to consider when choosing flexible office space.

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NLG Legal Observers at protest

The Green Hats at the Protests: National Lawyers Guild Legal Observers

Perhaps you’ve seen us at a march or rally, or wandering around the former Capitol Hill Occupied Protest (CHOP). You can’t miss the green hats; they’re the brightly colored beacons that let everyone know who we are and why we are there. Or perhaps you heard about us in the news after we, too, were subjected to the police’s use of blast balls and pepper spray. We are National Lawyers Guild legal observers.

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A diverse group of law grads

Regarding the Bar Exam and Competency

When the Washington Supreme Court modified the Admission to Practice Rules to grant admission under diploma privilege criteria, it spurred a great deal of discussion about the bar exam. Some of this discussion appears to assume the Supreme Court order is permanent. This does not appear to be the intent of the order. Many attorneys have complained about granting admission to practice law to individuals who have not taken the bar exam, essentially arguing the exam is a “rite of passage.” While I understand the sentiment, I reject its validity.

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An empty courtroom

How to Manage a Personal Injury Claim and Bankruptcy

A personal injury claim may or may not be protected if you file for bankruptcy and will depend on several factors discussed below. Often, consumers thinking about filing for bankruptcy have suffered some sort of personal injury or have been involved in an accident. This could be due to a loss of wages or the accumulation of various medical debts.

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A diverse group of attorneys

Mandatory Equity and Anti-Bias Training on the Table Again

Six months after an unsuccessful effort to incorporate new mandatory subject areas within the ethics education requirements for Washington legal professionals, the Washington Supreme Court MCLE Board has suggested a similar but more narrowly focused amendment that is so far being viewed more favorably by WSBA members.

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Totem Pole

Delayed Justice: The Attorney Behind the Fight Against State v. Towessnute

The 1916 Washington Supreme Court decision in State v. Towessnute opens with the words, “The prior occupancy of American soil by the Indian tribes did not vest them with sovereignty or any title to the land that was ever recognized by the white race, the Indian being merely an occupant with possessory uses for subsistence, and a favored ward of the Federal government.”
Then it gets worse…

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law books

Fine Print: Federal District Court Distinguishes Disciplinary and Malpractice Defense in Coverage Decision

Professional liability policies for lawyers and law firms often distinguish between disciplinary and malpractice defense. Some don’t cover disciplinary defense or, if they do, include a much lower coverage limit. A recent decision from the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington underscored the practical impact of the distinction between disciplinary and malpractice coverage.

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