Florida Bar president: ‘The winds of change are blowing’

Attorneys are encouraged to submit their responses to proposals being considered by the state Supreme Court.

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The Florida Bar President Mike Tanner says “the winds of change are blowing” in advance of potential transformation for the practice of law.

Addressing the Jacksonville Bar Association on April 6, Tanner said the state Supreme Court’s workgroup studying civil case resolution is recommending changing certain aspects of the state court system to more closely follow federal case management protocols.

Instead of the existing system that allows attorneys for both parties and the court to work out the schedule for a case, the court would lay out a plan the attorneys would be required to follow.

Tanner said The Florida Bar is preparing to submit a response to the proposal and asked JBA members to make their thoughts known as well.

“I encourage you to read the report and file a response with the court because this is likely to be adopted. This train is coming,” Tanner said.

Reviewing the recent session of the state Legislature, Tanner said pay raises were approved for trial court judges, assistant public defenders and assistant state attorneys, along with creation of a 6th District Court of Appeals.

Tanner also provided some statistics about lawyers in Florida.

He said 75% of The Florida Bar’s 110,413 members are in private practice, 15% are in government service and 10% are in corporate practice.

Small firms are the largest category in the state and 75% have 10 attorneys or fewer.

“Small firms are part of our fabric,” Tanner said.

The JBA’s annual Law Day Luncheon is May 4 when Florida House of Representatives Speaker-designate Paul Renner will be the keynote speaker.

Visit www.jaxbar.org to register.