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Updated MDEC Manual Available Online

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 15, 2017

MDEC_manualThe Judiciary’s August newsletter included an article on recent updates to the MDEC Policies and Procedures Manual (See page 36 in the version 1.19 regarding submissions in an envelope.)

The Manual can be found on the judiciary’s website MDEC page’s Here you can find links to information on registration and to MDEC FAQs for attorneys and the public. The link to the Manual can be found in the E-Filing Resource List on the efiling page that includes links to the e-filing brochure, MDEC Acronyms, attorney efiling codes and an overview of MDEC Rules.

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Ask A Lawyer In The Library: Wednesday Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 14, 2017

On Wednesday, August 9, 2017 the Law Library hosted another successful Ask A Lawyer

photo 1 (3)

Chris Boucher

In The Library program.  Chris Boucher provided legal advice to six people on topics such as employment, health records, home owner association fees, and credit.

The next program date is Wednesday, August 16, 2017.  

Next week is also the 3rd Wednesday of the month which means that the MVLS Brief Limited Advice Foreclosure Clinic will also be held in the law library from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm., the same time as the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program. Participants are encouraged to register for the clinic by calling 410-547-6537, but pre-registration is not required.

Also on the 3rd Wednesday,  The Ask a Lawyer program will be held in the evening at the Glen Burnie Regional Library.

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.  On the 3rd Wednesday of the month the MVLS Brief Limited Advice Foreclosure Clinic is hosted by the library.  Participants are encouraged to register for the clinic by calling 410-547-6537, but pre-registration is not required. The Ask a Lawyer program is also held monthly in the evening at two Anne Arundel County Public Library locations – at the Glen Burnie Regional Library on the 3rd Wednesday of the month and at the  Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday of the month. For more information, please see http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.

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Harrison Gage, Field Study Intern

Posted by Joan Bellistri on August 10, 2017

20170810_142710Today we were sorry to have to say good-bye to Harrison Gage, a University of Maryland Masters of Library and Information Science Field Study Intern, who spent the summer in the law library helping with a number of projects.  Thanks to Harrison, the cataloging backlog is gone, we have procedures for creating serial records, and an inventory of the law library’s art work.  We wish her well in completing her program and know that she will be a welcome addition to the staff of any library or archives.  Good luck, Harrison!

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Ask A Lawyer In The Library: Wednesday Wrap-Up

Posted by johnjeffreyross on August 2, 2017

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.

On Wednesday, August 2, 2017, the Law Library hosted another successful Ask A Lawyer In The Library program.  Mike Ragland and Jack Paltell, both retired, were on hand to assist five people who requested help with issues such as filing a civil action for fraud, drafting and execution of a deed pursuant to a divorce decree, a real-property issue, a lien on property and foreclosure procedure.jack-and-mike

The next program date is Wednesday, August 9, 2017. In addition, the Ask A Lawyer In the Library program is also hosted at two Anne Arundel County Public Library branches: the Glen Burnie Regional Library on the 3rd Wednesday of the month (from August until May), and the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday of every month. The programs at these public library branches are held from 4:30 to 6:30. Sign-up at both locations is at 4:15 p.m., and time slots are determined by lottery.

More information about the program is available at http://circuitcourt.org/legal-help/lawyer-in-the-library.  The Ask A Lawyer In The Law Library program is a limited legal advice service.  The program is not a substitute for representation.

Do you have a family law matter?  Family Law matters are best addressed by the Family Law  Self-Help Center which is located in the back of the Law Library.  For more information: http://www.circuitcourt.org/legal-help/family-law

Do you have a criminal case?  The Office of the Public Defender provides legal services to eligible individuals.  Information about the Office fo the Public Defender is available at http://www.opd.state.md.us

Need help with the District Court matter such as landlord/tenant, small claims (less than $5,000), consumer matters, or return of property (replevin and detinue)?  The District Court Self-Help Resource Center provides limited legal services for people who are not represented by an attorney.  Services are provided in-person in Glen Burnie, Upper Marlboro and Salisbury. More information is available at http://www.courts.state.md.us/legalhelp/districtselfhelpctr.html

Help with family and civil questions is available by phone and online chat from the Maryland Courts Self Help Center, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.  More information and a link for chat can be found here: http://www.mdcourts.gov/selfhelp/index.html#maryland

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Ask a Lawyer In the Library – Tuesday and Wednesday Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 27, 2017

This week we offered the Ask A Lawyer In The Library program in two different locations and at two different times.  On Tuesday evening the program was held at the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library starting at 4:30 p.m.

Carole Brown assisted four people with child custody, divorce, preparation for a juvenile hearing and an insurance question.  Joe Gormley of Gormley Jarashow Bowman was the lawyer on call for the weekly Wednesday program from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 pm.m.  He provided assistance with questions about an unemployment appeal and summary judgment.

The next program date is Wednesday, August 2 , 2017 in the law library.

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, in the evening from 4:30 – 6:30, 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.

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Changing Roles of Law Librarians

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 20, 2017

MVLS_facebook

What a nice surprise to see Bonnie Sullivan’s post about law libraries on Facebook.  Her comment  on this article is proof that Bonnie Sullivan, executive director of the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) is a champion of libraries and recognizes their value to the legal community.

The article referred to, Law Librarian? Try Chief Knowledge Officer: Our annual survey shows that in an era of digital change, the job of law librarian is evolving rapidly written by Mary Ellen Egan for the The American Lawyer on June 30, 2017  

While this article focuses more on the changing roles of firm law librarians, I can certainly say the role of court librarians is changing as well.  Who we serve, how we work, and what we do has changed dramatically. Court law libraries are the foundation in providing access to justice through access to legal information.

In the Anne Arundel County Public Law Library, I have seen the number of non-attorneys using the library increase to the point that close to 80% of questions we get are from non-attorneys or self-represented litigants (SRLs).  We still assist attorneys and the court but how we do that has changed as well.  Attorneys are more likely to need assistance with technology.  Librarians help with formulating a search on Westlaw or Lexis; show how to email an attachment; or to use a copy machine.  The use of technology is an important tool for meeting the needs of the non-attorney, too.  There is so much information on the Internet – not all is trustworthy or reliable.  Librarians are able to direct users to the sites that will provide the right information.  We often find that someone has found “the law” online that turns out to have nothing to do with Maryland. Librarians can now curate information online for use by special user groups.  See the AACPLL FAQs as an example and the Maryland People’s Law Library.  Technology has allowed the library to expand self-help programs.  Our foreclosure program offered through MVLS suffered from a lack of volunteers and/or clients.  Now, using a webcam, Google Hangouts and scanned documents; we always have MVLS staff on hand, remotely, to assist those in need of help with the foreclosure clinic.  

Librarians have always helped with legal research but now find that they often must perform a triage to find out what library customers really need.  This means knowing what programs and services are available outside of the library.  Librarians need to be able to match the what is needed with the best resource to meet the needs of each user whether print or online.

Partnerships with our Maryland legal service providers like MVLS, Legal Aid, HPRP and the Pro Bono Resource Center are essential in bringing services to those in need, in addition to legal information.  Partnering with the public library allows us to reach more people by taking advantage of the multiple locations and longer hours.

Librarians often hear “why a library when it is all online.”  The fact that so much information is online in so many ways is precisely why librarians are needed more than ever. Maryland court law libraries are always finding new ways and services to meet the needs of all in need of legal information and referrals, now and in the future.

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Ask a Lawyer In the Library and MVLS Foreclosure Clinic – Wednesday Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 19, 2017

Dan_Mellin

Dan Mellin

Today, Wednesday, July 19, 2017, the Law Library hosted the “Ask A Lawyer In The Library” program and the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) Remote Foreclosure Clinic. Daniel Mellin of Hillman, Brown & Darrow helped three people with issues such as real estate, a quit claim deed, and a trust. The next program date is Wednesday, July 26, 2017.

Today was also the first remote MVLS Foreclosure Clinic.  A couple came to the library for the “Ask A Lawyer In The Library” program with a foreclosure issue.  We are able to scan their documents and program agreements and email them to Ellyn Riedl, an mvls-logoattorney with MVLS.  The couple was able to talk with Ellyn face-to-face using a webcam with Google Hangouts. Ellyn was able to review their documents and advise. Their first language is Korean so we were able to use the Language Line so that language would not be a barrier to getting the help needed.  The couple was very happy with the attention and help.  The remote access MVLS Brief Legal Advice Foreclosure Clinic will continue on the 3rd Wednesday in the law library from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. More information can be found here: http://aacpll.pbworks.com/w/page/99877141/Foreclosure%20Clinic

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 for the months of 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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Worth a read: ABA article on implicit bias

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 14, 2017

This was an interesting article on implicit bias:  

Eliminating implicit bias: First step, admit you have it    July 2017 | Around the ABA

Few people will openly admit to holding racist beliefs or unconscious biases that can affect our daily decision-making from hiring decisions to medical care to our interaction with law enforcement and even the judicial system. But the fact is we all have biases.

Read the whole article here.

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Ask a Lawyer In the Library – Wednesday Wrap-Up

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 13, 2017

On Wednesday, July 12, 2017 the Law Library hosted another successful Ask A Lawyer In The Library program. Chris Boucher was our “Lawyer in the Law Library” and was able to help  one person in person who signed up with a property tax assessment appeal.

photo 1 (3)

Chris Boucher

After no one else signed up, Chris went back to the office but was on call in case someone did come in.  We were able to set it up for remote assistance when someone came in at 12:30 for help with an IRS tax lien.

The next program date is Wednesday, July 19, 2017.

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 for the months of 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.

The MVLS Brief Legal Advice Foreclosure Clinic is now held on the 3rd Wednesday in the law library from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. More information can be found here: http://aacpll.pbworks.com/w/page/99877141/Foreclosure%20Clinic This clinic will now be conducted remotely using Google HangOuts technology.

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Maryland Criminal Pattern Jury Instructions updated for 2017

Posted by Joan Bellistri on July 12, 2017

This just in from the MSBA:

What’s New in the 2017 Replacement Pages just published in June?

The NEW 2017 Replacement Pages replace ALL pages in the Second Edition, expands the pattern instructions, and brings the Second Edition fully up to date with current developments in statutory and case law. The 2017 Replacement Pages include 20 revised instructions, 9 brand new instructions (covering burglary, home invasion, credit card theft and fraud, and human trafficking), as well as updated and expanded comments and notes on use. The 2017 Replacement Pages also includes an updated CD with all the instructions formatted in rich text format (fully compatible with WordPerfect® or Microsoft Word® format), saving you hours of time!

In addition to instructions on specific criminal offenses, the book includes: introductory and cautionary instructions; general instructions; evidentiary instructions; and instructions as to defenses, parties and verdict sheets. The book is an excellent primer on evidence, burden of proof, and the elements of criminal offenses

Please note that Lexis and Westlaw as of today do not show that they have the updated 2017 version.  Check the date to make sure you are using the most current edition online. The law library has the updated version and CD-ROM available now.

 

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