Posted inEthicsNews

Committee seeks public comments on proposed ethics opinions

The Professional Ethics Committee for the State Bar of Texas is accepting public comments on the following proposed ethics opinions:

Proposed Opinion 2023-5 (comment deadline (1/26/24): Through an employment agreement between a law firm and its lawyers:

  1. May the law firm impose a minimum departure notice period for lawyers who wish to depart the law firm?
  2. May the law firm prohibit a departing lawyer from accessing and copying client information and files?
  3. May the law firm prohibit a departing lawyer from notifying clients of the impending departure?
  4. May the law firm prevent a lawyer from soliciting the law firm’s clients after the lawyer has departed from the firm?

Proposed Opinion 2023-6 (comment deadline (1/26/24): With respect to a lawyer who has departed a firm:

  1. Must the lawyer enter into a new legal services agreement with clients who followed the departed lawyer to a new firm, or may the lawyer rely on the former law firm’s legal services agreement as continuing to serve as the contract with those clients?
  2. What disclosure obligations does that lawyer have in advising clients who propose to follow the lawyer to the new practice regarding the clients’ financial obligations under the prior firm’s legal services agreement?

Go here to read the proposed opinions and provide comments.

Posted inSponsored Content

Sponsored Content: Going solo: 3 quick ways to jumpstart your own legal practice

Ready to launch your own law firm? Then welcome to the last article in Ruby’s “Solo” lawyer series! If you read our previous posts—“Ready to Go Solo?” and “Should you go solo? 4 things for attorneys to consider”—odds are you’re close to hitting the eject button at your old job. But before you do, we’ve got a few last suggestions you don’t want to miss…
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Posted inLaw SchoolsNews

Baylor Law to launch family law clinic to empower self-represented litigants

Baylor Law School announced it will open a new family law clinic beginning in fall 2024. The clinic aims to provide vital support to pro se litigants in navigating the complexities of family law cases, focusing on divorce and matters affecting parent-child relationships, according to a press release.

Created with financial assistance from the Texas Bar Foundation, or TBF, the clinic will address the increasing trend of self-representation among divorce litigants, especially those facing literacy and language barriers. The family law clinic will join Baylor Law’s six other clinics—the Entrepreneurship Legal Clinic, Estate Planning Clinics, Immigration Clinic, Intellectual Property Law Clinic, Trial Advocacy Clinic, and Veterans Clinics—that promote the school’s mission of service and access to justice.

Recent studies have shown a growing number of clients, regardless of their socioeconomic background, are choosing to represent themselves in family law matters. Baylor Law created the family law clinic, led by law Professor Stephanie Tang, to address this issue. Tang will serve as the clinic’s faculty supervisor, according to a press release. She will also lead training sessions, oversee clinic operations, and recruit student and attorney volunteers.

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Posted inNewsTexas Bar Foundation

Texas Advocacy Project receives $20,000 grant from Texas Bar Foundation to build capacity of free legal services

The Texas Advocacy Project, or TAP, announced it has received a $20,000 grant from the Texas Bar Foundation, or TBF, according to a press release. The grant, which will be distributed over a 12-month period, will be used to enhance TAP’s capacity to connect with the legal community and expand pro bono legal assistance to survivors of violence.

The grant funds a part-time pro bono coordinator position, whose primary role is to establish partnerships with law firms across Texas, according to a press release. These partnerships will result in the recruitment and training of pro bono attorneys at each of the participating law firms. This initiative will strengthen TAP’s ability to provide critical legal services to individuals in need, particularly in the areas of crime victims compensation, Title IX, and legal line consultations.

“This grant is a significant step forward in our mission to empower survivors through legal advocacy,” said TAP Chief Executive Officer Heather Bellino in a press release. “With the Texas Bar Foundation’s support, we can now provide even more survivors with the legal assistance they need to break the cycle of violence. We are thrilled to partner with TBF in our efforts to make a meaningful difference in the lives of survivors across Texas.”

Since its inception in 1965, the TBF has awarded more than $26 million in grants to law-related programs. The TBF is one of the nation’s largest charitably funded bar foundations.

For more information about TAP, go to

Posted inAccess to JusticePro Bono

Texas Access to Justice Commission recognizes outstanding pro bono contributions

During the New Lawyer Induction Ceremony at Bass Concert Hall on October 30, Supreme Court of Texas Justice and Texas Access to Justice Commission liaison Brett Busby honored the contributions of some of Texas’ most ardent pro bono advocates.

Justin Atkinson, of the University of Texas School of Law, and Shayla Hoang Nguyen, of Texas A&M School of Law, both received the 2023 Law Student Pro Bono Award in recognition of their exceptional commitment to pro bono work, according to a press release.

The University of Texas School of Law received the 2023 Law School Commitment to Service Award, which recognizes a law school’s significant impact on its community and its commitment to instilling in its students a passion for pro bono work. UT Law’s unyielding dedication to public service and its extensive influence on its community truly set it apart, according to a press release.

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Posted inSponsored Content

Sponsored Content: Cloud Technology Myth-Busting: 3 Truths About the Cloud’s Impact on Law Firm Efficiency

Times are a-changin’

Most lawyers are transitioning data storage and essential workflows to the cloud in this digital age. Yet, some attorneys are still hesitant to take the plunge. This reluctance often stems from misinformation or a lack of clarity around cloud technologies’ benefits, cost, and ease of use. Below, we’ll correct some of the most common myths about cloud technologies.
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Posted inSponsored Content

Sponsored Content: Go Far and Wide: How Chartering Helps Attorneys Save Time

In the large state of Texas, people often encounter the struggle of reaching destinations that are hours apart from large cities like Dallas, Austin, or Houston. Typically, when trying to reach a smaller city such as Waco or Abilene, you are bound by commercial travel to a larger town with a long drive to follow. In the world of legal practice, it is essential that attorneys reach their destination with ease to maximize their busy schedules. When you charter a private aircraft, you can take control of your schedule and enjoy the advantage of landing right where you need to be.
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Posted inBlogVeterans

Houston attorney David Nelson reflects on his service and the meaning of Veterans Day

Houston attorney David Nelson always knew he had a special friend in Lee Roy Herron. When the two met in the seventh grade in Lubbock, they became entwined in a fateful, yet inspiring tale of just how powerful a friendship can become. While juniors at Texas Tech University, Herron convinced Nelson to join the Marine Corps Officer Training program in 1965. Two years later, Nelson transferred to the Marine Corps Judge Advocate program, where he started his law career. Meanwhile, Herron, after attending Vietnamese language training school in California, plunged into the teeth of the Vietnam War thousands of miles from home. In 1969, Herron was killed in action after taking the place of a wounded officer in a heated battle. Nelson, recovering from a three-story fall in a roofing accident at the time, received the tragic news and many questions surrounding the nature of his friend’s death went unanswered for the next 28 years. Nelson spoke with the Texas Bar Journal about his own time in the Corps, the story of Herron that he finally pieced together, and the meaning of Herron’s sacrifice for his country.

Describe how you felt in the late 1960s, as the U.S. was fully embroiled in the Vietnam War. The stress of law school combined with the tension of wartime must have been difficult to bear. 

When I joined the Marine Corps on October 21, 1965, it was just months after President Lyndon Johnson had ordered thousands of troops to Vietnam. I was a junior at Texas Tech University and most of the country supported the war. But by the time of the Tet Offensive in early 1968, I was in law school at SMU, the war had dragged on for three years, and U.S. enthusiasm was waning. In my last semester during the spring of 1970, the tragic killing of Kent State University students occurred. I could hardly believe we had been embroiled in Vietnam over five years and protests against the war were rampant, including on the campus at SMU. And there I was, about to go on active duty in the Marine Corps. Needless to say, times were intensely stressful, both for me personally and for our country.

What do you remember most about Lee Herron? What were his greatest qualities as a person and a friend? 

I met Lee Herron in the seventh grade at R.W. Matthews Junior High School in Lubbock. We became fast friends, although Lee was extremely competitive in all areas of his life, including sports and academics. He was the type of friend that would tackle you hard in football practice and then cheerfully lift you up, asking if you were OK. He genuinely cared for his friends’ well-being. In mid-season in the ninth grade, he broke his arm in a tough game and refused to leave until the coach forced him to go to the hospital. Even at a young age, Lee was extremely “gung-ho,” to coin a Marine Corps phrase.

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Posted inAccess to JusticeNews

Free legal aid available for Texas veterans during Texas Veterans Legal Aid Week

Texas veterans are invited to participate in Texas Veterans Legal Aid Week, a statewide effort in honor of Veterans Day coordinated by the Texas Access to Justice Foundation, or TAJF, and legal aid programs across the state. During the week of November 4-11, legal aid programs, local bar associations, law schools, and pro bono private lawyers will provide civil legal services for qualified Texas veterans in various locations throughout the state.

The TAJF provided grant funding this year to 13 nonprofit organizations that provide civil legal services to veterans, according to a press release. Last year, legal aid organizations provided legal services to more than 6,300 Texas veterans, according to a press release.

A list of in-person and virtual clinics and events throughout the state during the week can be found here. Assistance and referrals are also provided through a statewide hotline for veterans at the Texas Legal Services Center—call 1-800-622-2520 and select option 2—or online at through the live chat feature.

Outside of Texas Veterans Legal Aid Week, veterans can receive legal aid assistance year-round at legal aid clinics, both in-person and virtual, across the state. For more information about the Texas Legal Service Center, go to For more information about the TAJF, go to


Posted inSponsored Content

Sponsored Content: Elevate Your Business Travel: The Piper M600

Owning a personal plane can be a game-changer for legal professionals, offering several advantages, including endless flexibility and upgraded travel experience. Whether you wish to travel with ease between meetings in different cities or need to reach a client in a place where commercial airlines can’t, owning your own aircraft will help get you there. Piper Aircraft offers a wide variety of planes fit for many different lifestyles. In particular, the Piper M600 SLS provides optimal performance, giving you safe and efficient travel.
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