Register Now! ABA 2019 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs

Online registration is now open for the ABA 2019 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs taking place September 24-26, 2019 in Austin, Texas. This year’s conference theme is “From Surviving to Thriving: LAPs Lead the Way,” Lawyers Helping Lawyer in Austin.

The conference offers a unique opportunity to learn about issues that directly impact the legal community’s well-being, and the services and resources offered by lawyer assistance programs. There will be sessions of interest for judges, disciplinary staff, bar leaders, lawyer assistance program directors and staff, law school administrators and law firm managers, and abundant opportunities to network with LAP personnel and volunteers from across the United States and Canada.

Register by August 3, 2019 to receive discounted registration rates.

Austin

Upcoming ABA CLE Webinar

Lawyer Well-Being: What’s It Got To Do With Me?

March 27, 2019 at 1pm EDT

Program Description: Join Bree Buchanan (Chair, ABA Commission on Lawyers Assistance Programs and former Director of the Texas Lawyers Assistance Program) and Lindsey Draper (former chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Public Protection in the Provision of Legal Services) as they survey the information on alcoholism, substance use disorders, and mental health issues that many in the legal profession face.

The issues of alcoholism, substance use disorders, and mental health issues are ones which affect all lawyers who care about client protection. Indeed, lawyers struggling to keep themselves well may not be physically, emotionally, or mentally capable of serving their clients ethically. Listen as Lindsey and Bree explain why this is such a big issue for the legal profession and learn how some systems and people are changing the way they have always done business to better serve clients and lawyers.

Our expert panel will help you:

  • Develop background knowledge on lawyer wellness
  • Link lawyer wellness to client protection, prevention of discipline, and avoiding legal malpractice
  • Provide examples of changes made to systems, practices, and personal behaviors that help protect lawyer well-being and better serve clients.

Further complimentary resources are available from the website for the ABA Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession, including a newly published Well-Being Toolkit for Lawyers and Legal Employers.

Register now!

Save the Date: 2019 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs

Mark your calendars for CoLAP’s 2019 National Conference for Lawyer Assistance Programs, “From Surviving to Thriving: LAPs Lead the Way,” taking place September 24-26, 2019 at the Hilton Austin Hotel, Austin, Texas.

The conference will have sessions of interest to judges, disciplinary staff, bar leaders, risk managers, lawyer assistance program directors and staff, law school administrators and law firm managers, as well as abundant opportunities to network with LAP personnel and volunteers. The conference also features an Exhibit Hall of facilities that address substance use disorders, mental health issues and well-being.

This is a unique opportunity to learn about issues that directly impact the legal community’s well-being, and the services and resources offered by lawyer assistance programs.

Check back on the ABA CoLAP website for more information as it becomes available.

Austin

Mindfulness in Law Society “Mindful Mondays at 4”

The Mindfulness in Law Society (MILS) has launched a new “Mindful Mondays at 4” initiative.  Every Monday at 4 p.m., in each time zone, members of the national MILS community lead a half-hour “virtual sit.” Anyone in the legal profession is welcome to attend the sitting in any time zone. Sessions generally consist of about 20 minutes of guided meditation, and 10 minutes of questions and discussion.

The mission of the Mindfulness in Law Society is to “educate, coordinate and promote activities in the legal profession relating to mindfulness meditation, yoga, and other contemplative practices.”

Visit the MILS website to learn more about session leaders and how to join.

Connecticut Bar Association Launches New Lawyer Wellbeing Website

The Connecticut Bar Association (CBA) has launched a new Lawyer Wellbeing Website. The website features a calendar of wellness-related events, on-demand CLE webinars on wellness topics such as mindfulness and emotional intelligence, and articles and toolkits, such as the ABA Well-Being Toolkit for Lawyers and Legal Employers. And of course, it links to Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers-Connecticut, Inc, the organization that provides assistance to those in the Connecticut legal community experiencing substance use or mental health health issues.

Also included is a new Wellbeing Video Series. The first episode in the series, “Living with a Mental Health Condition,” featuring Kathleen Flaherty, CBA member, has three parts: Part 1 – Becoming a Lawyer; Part 2 – Law School and Passing the Bar; and Part 3 – Staying Well and Balanced.

Check out the new CBA Lawyer Wellbeing Website here.

More on Law School Mental Health Day…

Today is National Mental Health Day for Law Schools. Earlier today, we posted about the new episode in “The Path to Law Student Well-Being” podcast series, and the presentation, “To Hell and Back: One Lawyer’s Path to Recovery,” streamed live from the American University Washington College of Law, now available for replay. All week, law schools and others have been sharing their Mental Health Day activities over Twitter with #LawStudentWellness.

And there’s more!

Tune in tomorrow for the webinar, “Rewiring Your Brain for Stress Resilience – An ABA Mental Health Week Webinar,” sponsored by the ABA Law Student Division, Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs and Young Lawyers Division.

Check out this great piece written by Alessandra Fritz, a 2L at UCI Law: “Who Asked Ali? Unsolicited, Unrefined Law School Advice from your Law Student Division Mental Health Coordinator.”

Law students: Take this Pledge to Prioritize Law Student Wellness just launched by the ABA Law Student Division.


The ABA Law Student Division has officially moved Law School Mental Health Day to October 10. On and around this day law schools are encouraged to sponsor educational programs and events that teach and foster breaking the stigma associated with severe depression and anxiety among law students and lawyers. Learn more about these ABA initiatives in the ABA Journal article, “For Law Student Mental Health Day, ABA groups focus on ways to promote well-being.”

Alessandra Fritz is an ABA Law Student Division member and its mental health coordinator, and is the Law Student Division’s liaison to the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs. 

New Episode in The Path to Law Student Well-Being Podcast Series

“The Path to Law Student Well-Being” is a podcast series sponsored by the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs and Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar. The series is a response to the call for action in the 2017 Report, The Path to Lawyer Well-Being: Practical Recommendations for Positive Change, which sets out action items for the legal community, including specific steps law schools can take, to shift the culture of the legal profession towards one that is focused on well-being.

The inaugural 2-part episode was released in conjuntion with Law School Mental Health Day on March 28, 2018. Since then, the ABA Law Student Division has moved Mental Health Day to October 10 (TODAY!) In recognition, a new epsiode in the series is now available.


Play Button  The Path to Law Student Well-Being – Ep. 2: Character and Fitness and the Evaluation Process

Episode 2 features a short conversation about character and fitness evaluations in the bar admission process as it pertains to mental health issues and substance use disorders. Guests are Janet Stearns, Dean of Students at the University of Miami School of Law, Robert Albury, Executive Director of the West Virginia Judicial & Lawyer Assistance Program, and host Chase Anderson, Case Manager with Minnesota Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers.


Access the entire “The Path to Law Student Well-Being” podcast series here.

Don’t forget, today is National Law School Mental Health Day! Share what you are doing to improve the well-being of law students over Twitter with #LawStudentWellness!

ABA Launches Lawyer Well-Being Pledge Campaign for Legal Employers

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day (globally) and the beginning of National Suicide Prevention Week in the US. Today also marks the launch of a new Pledge Campaign from the American Bar Association aimed at improving the substance use and mental health landscape of the legal profession.

The Campaign, organized by the ABA Working Group to Advance Well-Being in the Legal Profession, calls upon legal employers to recognize that substance use and mental health problems represent a significant challenge for the legal profession, acknowledge that more can and should be done to improve the health and well-being of lawyers, and pledge to support the Campaign and work to adopt and prioritize its seven-point framework for building a better future.

The ABA press release announcing its launch includes a quote from ABA President Bob Carlson in support of the initiative and a list of over a dozen firms that have already pledged their support.

Learn more on the ABA Working Group website.

Pledge Infographic

 

Law School Mental Health Day Moves to Oct. 10

The ABA Law Student Division has officially moved Law School Mental Health Day to October 10.

In recognition of Law School Mental Health Day, the American University Washington College of Law will host a YouTube Live event featuring Laurie Besden, Pennsylvania Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers Executive Director, who is in recovery with an incredible story to share.

The session will run live from 2:00-3:00pm Eastern and then be available for replay. The YouTube link is http://auw.cl/tohellandback. A full description:

To Hell and Back: One Lawyer’s Path to Recovery. A YouTube Live Presentation

Laurie had a privileged upbringing.  She graduated college with a 3.97 GPA, and was in the top 15% of her law school class. On paper, Laurie is the definition of success. Laurie is also a drug addict…

Listen as Laurie candidly shares her story of crippling addiction, and ultimately, redemption. Learn how the District Attorney approached the case and her current thoughts about it. Understand what it is like to be approached by a caring individual, with their experience strength and hope, even when you are not ready to accept your state of affairs. It is never too early or late to plant “the seed of hope”.

This session will move you. Please share widely.

LSMHD


 

For those of you participating in or planning events on or around October 10, please share with #LawStudentWellness.

ABA CoLAP has resources for law students and law schools available on its website here, including the “Substance Abuse and Mental Health Toolkit for Law Students and Those Who Care About Them,” and the first two-part episode in the “Path to Law Student Well-Being” podcast series.

ABA LAWYER RETREAT

See below for details about the upcoming Lawyer Retreat from the American Bar Association.


Improving and empowering the whole lawyer.

October 5, 2018 | 8:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.
Four Seasons Resort | Vail, CO

The purpose of this retreat is to provide a different way of learning how to better your practice of law and yourself. Our goal is to provide each participant with experiential learning so that you walk away with new tools you can implement right away in order to make your practice and personal life, as a lawyer, even better.

Quite simply, this is not the typical lawyer or law firm retreat. We will use the backdrop of Vail and the Four Seasons Resort to provide you with world class facilitators using the outdoor and indoor elements to your learning advantage. Attendees will not only learn about having difficult conversations, the importance of emotional intelligence/self-awareness and design thinking, but they will also have the opportunity to learn through collaborative interaction how to put what they are learning into practice back in their own law firms or legal organizations.

​We encourage you to bring your team with you-treat this like the retreat it is meant to be! It can be hard to find the quality time to spend with your team at work. Whether you are a small firm or a large firm lawyer with a particular team or practice group, this retreat provides you with the opportunity to connect with your practice group and team, and to take advantage of having some of the best lawyer retreat facilitators in the world help you productively interact. You will have the added benefit of learning from other attorneys from around the country through many networking opportunities. 

What to Expect

  • To be educated and learn practical tools and techniques
  • Apply them to your legal practice and personal life
  • Connect with your team
  • Meet other lawyers, network and grow your referral base
  • Learn what the ABA offers to make your legal practice easier through practice management resources
  • Have fun, relax, rejuvenate, and refocus

This Event Is For: 

  • Large firm lawyers, their leaders and their practice group members
  • Medium firm lawyers looking for new ways to grow their practice
  • Small and solo lawyers wanting to get an edge and get ahead
  • Any lawyer or their administrative team wanting to grow, have fun, and relax!

REGISTER NOW!