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Maryland Sentencing Guidelines effective July 1, 2018

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 17, 2018

From the website of the Maryland State Commission on Criminal Sentencing Policy:

The MSCCSP released Version 10.0 of the Maryland Sentencing Guidelines Manual (MSGM). MSGM 10.0 includes revisions to the juvenile delinquency scoring component of the offender score approved by the MSCCSP and adopted in COMAR effective July 1, 2018. For additional details on the juvenile delinquency score revisions, see the June 2018 edition of the Guidelines E-News. In addition to the juvenile delinquency score revisions, the new manual includes updated sample cases, an updated offense table (Appendix A), and a revision to one of the victim information items that involves changing “Victim Non-participation” to “Victim participation” following feedback from practitioners to phrase the item in the affirmative. Finally, the updated offense table reflects minor edits and the addition of a previously unclassified offense (EC, § 10-439–Purchase, sell, transfer, or obtain stem cell material donated in accordance with EC, § 10-438 for financial gain or advantage).

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National Consumer Law Center: Access NCLC Titles Digitally in the Library!

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 10, 2018

NCLC

You may already know that the Law Library has an extensive collection of National Consumer Law Center titles on our shelves. But did you know the library also offers these same titles online?

Easily navigate a wealth of information regarding Debtor Rights, Credit and Banking, Consumer Litigation, and Deception and Warranties using the Law Library’s digital subscription. Enjoy the functionality of speedy, thorough searches for information, as well as the hassle-free ability to copy, paste, email, and share texts with the click of a mouse.

This digital subscription includes not only the standard 20 titles, but web links to primary sources, related court decisions, forms, links, and a plethora of other useful resources. The NCLC website also has free webinars, information on NCLC legal assistance programs, consulting services for attorneys and legislation/rulemakings on consumer topics.

Visit the Law Library to access these valuable information resources.

 

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Ask a Lawyer in the Library: July Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 1, 2018

Thanks to our volunteer attorneys  – Jonathan Pasterick of Hillman, Brown and Darrow, Carole Brown, Frank Lozupone of Gormley Jarashow Bowman and Richard Ronay – who assisted 22 people with issues such as divorce, health insurance, contracts, property disputes and guardianship.

In addition, the MVLS Foreclosure Clinic helped one person with foreclosure questions. The MVLS Brief Legal Advice Foreclosure Clinic is held on the 3rd Wednesday in the law library from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

The Ask a Lawyer In the Library program is a civil, non-family law, self-help program sponsored by The Anne Arundel Bar Association 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. No appointment is necessary, but sign-up is required at the law library’s information desk. Sign-up begins at 10:45 a.m., and time slots are determined by a lottery. In addition to the weekly program, the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program is held monthly at two Anne Arundel County Public Library branches: Glen Burnie Regional Library on the 3rd Wednesday (except in June and July) and Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday. For more information, please see http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.

Do you have a family law matter? Family Law matters are best addressed by Family Law Self-Help Center which is located in the back of the law library.

Do you have a criminal case? The Office of the Public Defender provides legal services to eligible individuals.

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Pro Bono Made Easy: MVLS Introduces the Pro Bono Portal

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 31, 2018

News from Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS):

Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS), the largest provider of pro bono civil legal services to low-income Marylanders, unveiled the new Pro Bono Portal to easily connect volunteer attorneys with vulnerable Marylanders who need legal help. Through a mobile-friendly and optimized user interface, attorneys can quickly identify individuals and families who need their expertise. The Pro Bono Portal displays cases in real time using a color-coded system that organizes cases by type and geographic region.

“We are always looking for ways to increase the speed at which we can match Marylanders in need with the generous support of volunteer attorneys. Our refreshed Pro Bono Portal is a wonderful example of how we are evolving our technology to help more people,” said Bonnie Sullivan, executive director, Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS). “Now, attorneys can easily check available cases from any mobile device and no matter where they are in their daily activities. We look forward to continuing to leverage technology to expand the reach of our services and the commitment of our volunteers.”

During an initial trial with current volunteer attorneys, MVLS’ new Pro Bono Portal received positive reviews. According to Richard (Ricky) L. Adams, associate at Rosenberg Martin Greenberg LLP, the new Pro Bono Portal is “very easy to understand and determine which cases might be interesting to me as an attorney. Hopefully this tool will make it easier for attorneys to volunteer and to share cases with colleagues they know might be looking for such opportunities!”

While the Portal works for all attorneys, it’s particularly ideal for new attorneys to be able to see all the available cases (sortable by case type and geography) and to find a case to jump into to start building their legal skills.

If you are an attorney and want to make an impact in the Maryland community, please visit www.mvlslaw.org/probonoportal to identify a case that aligns with your professional skillset and geographic location

 

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Maryland’s 2018 Primary Election

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 9, 2018

ballot-1294935_960_720From the number of candidates I saw in Annapolis’ 4th of July Parade, it looks like the winners of the primary are gearing up for the General Election in November.

Find out who the candidates will be in the General Election by reviewing the results of the Primary Election here.

The General Election will be held November 6, 2018, 7 am until 8 pm. Early Voting starts Thursday, October 25, 2018 and goes through Thursday, November 1, 2018 from 10 am until 8 pm.

For more information on elections in Maryland visit the website of the Maryland State Board of Elections.

 

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Ask a Lawyer in the Library: June Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 5, 2018

Thanks to our volunteer attorneys who assisted 20 people with issues such as contracts, deeds, estate planning, deeds, emancipation, zoning and debt collection. The program is on the summer schedule in Glen Burnie and will resume there in August.  Eastport will resume in July after having to cancel due to the 2018 Primary Election since that library was also a polling place

The Ask a Lawyer In the Library program is a civil, non-family law, self-help program sponsored by The Anne Arundel Bar Association 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. No appointment is necessary, but sign-up is required at the law library’s information desk. Sign-up begins at 10:45 a.m., and time slots are determined by a lottery. In addition to the weekly program, the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program is held monthly at two Anne Arundel County Public Library branches: Glen Burnie Regional Library on the 3rd Wednesday (except in June and July) and Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday. For more information, please see http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.

 

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Court Holiday – Independence Day, the 4th of July

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 4, 2018

fireworksThe Law Library is closed today, July 4, 2018, for the 4th of July holiday.  The Law Library will reopen tomorrow, Thursday, July 5, 2018.  A list of Court Holidays is available on the Circuit Court’s website at https://mdcourts.gov/administration/holidays Except on Court Holidays, the Library is open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Independence Day commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. A federal holiday since 1941, Independence Day, also referred to as the Fourth of July, has been celebrated in the United States since 1776.  If you are interested in learning more about Independence Day and the events leading up to the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, check out these sites.

 

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Ask a Lawyer in the Library: May Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on June 15, 2018

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The Ask a Lawyer In the Library program is a civil, non-family law, self-help program sponsored by The Anne Arundel Bar Association 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. No appointment is necessary, but sign-up is required at the law library’s information desk. Sign-up begins at 10:45 a.m., and time slots are determined by a lottery. In addition to the weekly program, the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program is 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. For more information, please see http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.

Please note that the Glen Burnie program is not held in June or July and the Eastport program will not be held in June.

 

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Law Library and Court Closed for the Memorial Day Holiday

Posted by Joan Bellistri on May 28, 2018

The Law Library is closed today, May 28, 2018 for the Memorial Day  holiday.  The Law Library will reopen tomorrow, Tuesday, May 29, 2018  A list of Court Holidays is available on the Circuit Court’s website’s list of Court Holidays. Except on Court Holidays, the Library is open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Interested in the history of this holiday? Please see the following provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs: https://www.va.gov/opa/speceven/memday/

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Security Planner for Online Safety

Posted by Joan Bellistri on May 24, 2018

computerSecurity Planner by Citizen Lab is an online tool that provides information on improving online security.  It is described on the site’s “about” page like this:

Security Planner is an easy-to-use guide with expert-reviewed advice for staying safer online. It provides recommendations on implementing basic online practices, like enabling two-factor authentication on important accounts, making sure software stays updated, and using encrypted chats to protect private communications. More advanced users can receive advice on where to go for more help.

Security Planner is a project of the Citizen Lab, an interdisciplinary group based at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto. It was incubated by Jigsaw (then known as Google Ideas) and handed off to the Citizen Lab in December 2015.

Security Planner recommendations are made by a committee of experts in digital security and have gone through a rigorous peer review evaluation, led by the Citizen Lab. We’re supported by a community of organizations, including non-profits, educational institutions, and foundations, and never accept funds or services in exchange for making a recommendation.

The Law Librarians Working Group of the Self Represented Litigation Network recently had the opportunity to hear about this service on a recent conference call meeting.  As a result we will be doing what we can to get the word out about this tool.  Please share with those who might benefit.

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