2019 Strategic Plan Update: Building for the Future(Document URL) (Catalog Record). This document reports on the Judiciary’s progress towards its strategic goals for 2015-2020.
Handbook for Guardians of Minors. (Document URL) (Catalog Record): This guide provides help for court-appointed guardians of minors. The handbook includes instructions, sample forms, and resources to contact for additional information.
Serving on a Maryland Grand Jury. (Document URL) (Catalog Record): This pamphlet, written for new grand jurors, explains a grand jury’s purpose and the duties and responsibilities of serving on one. It also includes a helpful “Frequently Used Terms” glossary in the back.
Journalist’s Guide to Maryland’s Legal System. Sue Kopen Katcef & Robert D. Anbinder, eds. Third edition. (Document URL) (Catalog Record): Here, journalists can read about Maryland laws that affect them, the structure and functions of the courts, explanations of different court processes, and other pertinent legal topics. The third edition to this handbook is available on-line only; our library holds superseded, print versions of this handbook for those who prefer them. Find them in our catalog.
On Friday, June 19, 2020, County Executive Steuart Pittman issued a proclamation declaring it Juneteenth Day in Anne Arundel County. Juneteenth is the anniversary of the date the last enslaved people, who were in Texas, learned of the Emancipation Proclamation, two years after it was issued. It was then and is now a day of celebration. To commemorate in Anne Arundel County, there was a march beginning at the MLK Foot Soldiers Memorial at Whitmore Park ending at the Kunta Kinte Memorial at City Dock, socially distanced and with masks.
You might wonder how the information finally made it to the last people to know in Texas. Joe Lawson, Deputy Director of the Harris County Law Library, shared that he”found an article written for our local bar journal, The Houston Lawyer, which includes an interesting passage about how news of the end of slavery arrived in Houston:”
On June 20, the 34th Iowa Regiment and five companies of the 114th Ohio Regiment marched through Houston and occupied the courthouse. A cannon placed in front of the courthouse was fired every day, breaking the windows around the courthouse square.
The Columbia Law School Scholarship Repository has added this title. Access (for free) is provided here. It is described on the site as follows:
The COVID-19 crisis has ended and upended lives around the globe. In addition to killing over 160,000 people, more than 35,000 in the United States alone, its secondary effects have been as devastating. These secondary effects pose fundamental challenges to the rules that govern our social, political, and economic lives. These rules are the domain of lawyers. Law in the Time of COVID-19 is the product of a joint effort by members of the faculty of Columbia Law School and several law professors from other schools.
This volume offers guidance for thinking about some the most pressing legal issues the pandemic has raised, especially (though not exclusively) for law in the United States: from the rights of prison inmates who live under conditions that make them exceptionally vulnerable to the highly contagious virus to the options for contracting parties who now face circumstances that make it impossible for them to live up to their past commitments. The book does not give legal advice. Instead, it identifies critical legal issues that affect many peoples’ lives, offers fresh perspectives for thinking about those issues, and provides guidance to legislatures and policy makers about the legal challenges ahead.
After a break of more than two months, the law library was able to again offer the opportunity to the public to speak to an attorney about their civil legal issues. This is normally an-in person program, but with the courts having to close to the public due to the pandemic – not to mention that face-to-face meetings are not a good idea no matter what at this time – the law library had to find another way to provide the service. Many thanks to attorney, Joe Gormley of Gormley Jarashow Bowman for volunteering to be the first online “lawyer in the library.”
Skype for Business worked out well. It allowed for easy access via phone or an online link. Today, all chose the phone option. All of the four slots were filled. (We are starting with fewer time slots so that we can get used to the new format. It seems when online, the transition takes a little longer between appointments.)
This remote program is now scheduled through July. The program, as before, will be held every Wednesday from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm. The next session will be on June 3, 2020. The monthly programs that were held in-person at the Anne Arundel County North County Regional Library on the third Wednesday and at the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday are on the schedule, too, from 3:30 pm until 6:45 pm. (The hours are a little different to accommodate the new format.)
Sessions are now by appointment. Register online here or call the law library at 410-222-1387. Once registered, a link to an online intake and agreement will be sent via email. Meeting information is sent the day of the program. Anyone without computer access, can schedule an appointment as well as fill out the intake with the assistance of library staff by phone.
The Ask a Lawyer In the Library program is a civil, non-family law, self-help program sponsored by The Anne Arundel Local Pro Bono Committee and the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service. Every Wednesday, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., you can talk with a volunteer attorney for up to 20 minutes. In addition to the weekly program, the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program that was held monthly at two Anne Arundel County Public Library branches: Glen Burnie Regional Library on the 3rd Wednesday and Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday, in the evening, will continue online as well. For more information, please see http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.
The Lawyer in the Library program is now available remotely by phone or video conference. The Lawyer in the Library is a civil legal self-help program where you can speak to an attorney for up to 20 minutes. The program is coordinated by the Anne Arundel County Public Law Library and sponsored by the Local Pro Bono Committee and the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service.
Issues that may be addressed include:
Debt and bankruptcy
Employment and wage claim issues
Contracts, warranties and/or consumer disputes
Wills, estate planning, probate, living wills
To prepare for your session:
Write a list of specific questions for the attorney.
Make sure that you have any paperwork and information related to the case on hand.
Organize any paperwork from most recent on the top to oldest at the bottom.
Law Library services will be unavailable today, May 25, 2020 for the Memorial Day holiday. The Law Library will be available via phone and email tomorrow, Tuesday, May 26, 2020. Except on Court Holidays, the Library is open – virtually these days – Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. A list of Court Holidays is available on the Circuit Court’s website’s list of Court Holidays.
This article also includes links to the first chapters of all of the NCLC publications. Titles include Home Foreclosures, Fair Debt Collection, Mortgage Lending and many more. These titles are a part of the law library’s collection with print and online access. Check out the library’s online catalog by searching “NCLC” for a listing of library holdings. Call the law library if you need information from any of the NCLC titles.
The Law Day webpage of American Bar Association states that Law Day is held on May 1st every year to celebrate the role of law in our society and to cultivate a deeper understanding of the legal profession. Read the ABA’s History of Law Day to find out more.
National Library Week begins today. The original theme was “Find Your Place at the Law Library.” With so much change in how libraries of all types are operating, an alternate theme was devised.
Maryland Court Law Libraries will be unable to provide in-person assistance until June and as a result are trying to make sure that previous in-person users are aware that law libraries can be accessed remotely.
Please take time to visit your local public library and law library in Anne Arundel County to celebrate National Library Week. I know that we will be happy to “see” you online and look forward to seeing you in person in the future.