Going to make this newsletter short. I am going to be 'out of service' from May 23-28. HOWEVER, the awesome Ms. Reba Peden will be doing our CLE on "CASA" for June 2012.
GREAT TIP!!!! From Thomson Reuters......
"Now you can access your go-to books - like Federal Civil Judicial Procedure and Rules - as smart eBooks on your iPad! Go to store.westlaw.com/proview
Please email me at email@example.com and give me ideas for articles, CLE, and other things you would like to see NALS of West Coast Florida do.
ALSO- have had a few members ask about sitting for our certification tests. If you are interested in a class to help you study - please email me as well.
BIG NEWS!!!! NALS of West Coast Florida was the 'Chapter Spotlight' in the NALS Docket. Be sure to check us out on that newsletter at http://www.nals.org/
WOW May already - this year is just FLYING BY!!!!!!!
We had lots of new members join our chapter in April - Welcome to you all!!! Hope to see you soon in a CLE.
Our May CLE will be "Diversity in the Workplace." I need a suggestion for June. Please help me come up with one. I am going to try to get Michael Faehner to come back and do Pet Trusts for July.
Saw this in Pioneer Credit's Pilot Newsletter (http://www.pioneercredit.com/)
Had to share!
I think it’s safe to say that most of us lead a high-stress lifestyle in today’s ‘glued-to-our-cell-phones society’. We live our lives at top-speed, rarely taking the time to unplug and recharge ourselves. The effect of this mentality is heightened stress in our lives. Stress can have very negative impacts on your health, sleep, relationships, and overall well being. Luckily, there are numerous techniques you can apply to your life to de-stress! The techniques in this article are easy to adjust to, don’t take much time, and are noticeably effective. Have fun trying them out, and feeling the tension ease away.
De-Clutter Your Life
One of the best things you can do to relieve stress is to get your life organized. The simple act of cleaning up your house, car, desk, etc, will bring about a sense of control and order to your life. You will benefit in every aspect of your life by getting organized. This is the perfect excuse for some spring cleaning! Try cleaning up the small things first –and focus on keeping them that way. If you can master the art of keeping your desk or your car clean, you will be able to keep your whole home in order flawlessly. Overall, you will find yourself being timelier, and being less forgetful.
If you are lacking exercise in your life, then you are almost guaranteed to be harboring extra stress. Our bodies need the outlet of exercise to function smoothly and maintain optimal health. The great thing about getting rid of stress through exercise is that you can incorporate it into your life in a number of ways. You don’t need to dedicate yourself to a hard-core workout plan to reap the benefits. Simple things such as talking a walk in the evening or stretching for bed will do the trick.
Relaxing breathing techniques are incredibly easy to learn, and can be practiced at any time throughout your day. To start, simply take a deep breath in through your nose, filling up your lower lungs first; continue the inhale until your lungs are full. Exhale slowly through your nose, pushing out all of the remaining breath. Repeat. When you get used to the deep breath, you can try to start counting your breaths, eventually extending the cycle to longer counts. This breathing technique is sure to calm your nerves and bring some calmness to your life.
Another easy way to ease stress in your life is to spend some time each night without technology. Use this time to relax with a good book—reading is a great way to sharpen and engage your mind. Spend some time doing an old hobby, or maybe pick up a new one. Engaging your mind in these types of activities is crucial to reducing stress, and improving your entire mental well being.
A chance to try something out for free? What have you got to lose?
If you're interested in a particular product or service, trying before you buy might seem like a no-brainer. But what starts as a free trial — or for a very low cost — might end up costing you real money.
The Federal Trade Commission, the nation's consumer protection agency, wants you to know that some companies use free trials to sign you up for more products — sometimes lots of products — which can cost you lots of money as they bill you every month until you cancel.
Whiter Teeth? Flatter Stomach? Shinier Hair?
Whether it's for a teeth whitener, vitamin or kitchen gadget, all free trials eventually end. And typically, if you don't want to buy what you've tried, you need to cancel or take some other action before the trial is up. If you don't, you may be agreeing to buy more products.
But some dishonest businesses make it tough to cancel, hiding the terms and conditions of their offers in teensy type, using pre-checked sign-up boxes as the default setting online, and putting conditions on returns and cancellations that are so strict it could be next to impossible to stop the deliveries and the billing.
Or, the "free trial" might come with a small shipping and handling fee. You think you're only paying a couple of dollars, but you're really giving over your credit card information, resulting in much higher charges after the trial.
Other "free" offers enroll you in clubs or subscriptions. For example, a company might offer you an introductory package of free books, CDs, magazines or movies. If you sign up, you may be agreeing to enroll in a club that will send you more products and bill you until you cancel, or to a subscription that's automatically renewed each year.
Here's What To Do
So how can you avoid the costs that might be hiding in free trials?
If you see charges you didn't agree to, contact the company directly to sort out the situation. If that doesn't work, call your credit card company to dispute the charge. Ask the credit card company to reverse the charge because you didn't actively order the additional merchandise.
Where to Complain
If you've been wrongly charged for a free trial offer, report it to the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint. You also can contact your local consumer protection agency, which you can look up at consumeraction.gov, and file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau (bbb.org)
The FTC works to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them. To file a complaint or get free information on consumer issues, visit ftc.gov or call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357); TTY: 1-866-653-4261. Watch a video, How to File a Complaint, at ftc.gov/video to learn more. The FTC enters consumer complaints into the Consumer Sentinel Network, a secure online database and investigative tool used by hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.
I think spring is truly here - the clocks have been changed, the trees are looking greener.... I think this is my favorite time of year!!!!
For those of you who attended Learning on the Sand Bar - I hope you had as much fun as I did. Michael was wonderful and I look forward to having him return to us soon.
April CLE: LDPs (Who are they and why are they here?)
May CLE: Diversity in the workforce
From our 'sister-n-law' Vernelle Collins from NALS of Phoenix (and a secondary member to NALS of West Coast Florida):
Google Scholar is a great online search engine for case law (find and print) and other legal research when cost is an issue or when using LEXIS/NEXIS or WestLaw is not an option. Case information includes hyperlinks to the cases cited within the decision and a tabbed page to show cases citing these decisions. You can search by subject matter (and narrow results by jurisdiction or year) or using specific citations and/or case names. Searches by subject matter can also produce results containing legal articles. Results containing articles published by LEXIS/NEXIS or WestLaw (which require a login/password and payment of a fee) will often (but not always) provide a link to a free .pdf copy posted elsewhere on the internet.
Here is the link: http://scholar.google.com/schhp?hl=en&tab=ws
Play around with it when you have a minute, and see how it works. Hopefully you will find this information useful.
If you have any suggestions for an article or have written one yourself - please feel free to submit it to me and I will publish it in our next edition.
PHOTOS OF LEARNING ON THE SAND BAR:
Top of the Morning to all of you! (That is the best Irish I can do.)
Hope this year is starting off great for you and I hope all have been able to check out at least one of our great CLEs we have offered this year.
But the good stuff is just beginning..............
MARCH CLE - "Learning on the Sand Bar" (funded by the NALS Foundation).
Come join us for a one of a kind CLE event. It will be held at 225 Country Club Dr., Largo, FL on Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 2:00p.m. There will be a speaker Mr. Michael Faehner on the topic of Estate Planning.
Come network with your fellow paralegals. We will be serving light snacks and there will be a drawing for AMAZING PRIZES (So far: A handmade beaded watch, a Starbucks gift certificate, a 2TB external hard drive). Tickets for the drawing will be 1 for $1; 5 for $5; 20 for $25. No need to be present to win.
This event will be free to members of NALS of West Coast Florida and $10 for non members. But wait - what makes this one of a kind? Well.... If you are not able to attend in person - you can attend via the internet!!!!! You can watch the events via your own living room!!!! See the speaker(s) and have all the excitement of the event. Same fees apply.
I am looking for members or anyone that would like to have their article published here in our newsletter. Please contact me if you have such or if your organization would like to submit an article in our publication.
ABA Family Law Section -- Spring CLE Conference, April 18-21, 2012 in Miami Beach, FL (Eden Roc Renaissance Miami Beach).
Hit the beach this spring and pick up CLE credits in courses on adoption, domestic violence, ethics, and much more._____________________________________________________________________________
This year is already flying by!!!! Our chapter is growing and growing - and the CLE is getting better and better. Hopefully everyone is enjoying the education and the networking. If you would like to make a suggestion for an upcoming CLE or event - please advise. Please also keep your eyes on the NALS website http://www.nals.org/ and check out the CLE and study groups on the Online Learning Center. Next major event for NALS is the March Tulsa Education/Leadership Conference. I will be there and will be tweeting and/or Facebooking updates. Check them out with the tag that they give us. I will make sure you know what it is.
Next CLE for NALS of West Coast Florida is on Wed., Feb. 8, 2012 at 8pm EST. It will be on Notary Public updates and do's/don'ts. Dont miss it.
MARCH CLE - Learning on the Sand Bar (funded by the NALS Foundation). Come join us for a one of a kind CLE event. It will be held at 225 Country Club Dr., Largo, FL on Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 2:00p.m. There will be a speaker from the Florida Bar and raffle prizes. Come network with your fellow paralegals. This event will be free to members of NALS of West Coast Florida and $10 for non members. But wait - what makes this one of a kind? Well.... If you are not able to attend in person - you can attend via the internet!!!!! You can watch the events via your own living room!!!! See the speaker(s) and have all the excitement of the event. Same fees apply. Details to come on that as well!
I cannot believe we are now into January 2012. Happy New Year!!!
I hope you have made your resolutions - and I hope that resolution is to advance in your career in the legal field and I would hope that would include certification or education.
Be sure to join us on Wed, January 11, 2012 at 8pm for the Bankruptcy Update with Charley Laman CLE. Members- you are free. To join - please see our home page or contact Dawn E Fountain (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you are not a member and would like to attend - please click here. Non-Members are $10.00.
ALSO- very important news from the NALS Foundation:
The NALS Foundation would like to congratulate the most recent grant recipients! Receiving grants from the December 1 grant period were:
We got $350 towards this AMAZING CLE we have planned which will be able to be attended virtually and in person. More details to come.
More education available:
Certification - By: Terry Houston, PP Emerita
Many successes in life only come about as the result of our having used initiative to improve some aspect of our lives that not only benefits us personally but also benefits others we interact with. A NALS certification is one of those initiatives with dual benefits. Why go to the trouble? What’s in it for you? You’ll derive an unmatched sense of satisfaction from having proven, if only to yourself, that you know what you’re about. And you just might learn enough to qualify for a promotion and a pay raise from your boss.
Wouldn’t it feel good to present a resume that identifies you as an Accredited Legal Secretary? Many of us are fortunate to be employed in the legal industry already, and most of us worked our way into those positions by simple hard work and "earn as you learn" bootstrapping our way up the clerical ladder. Sure, there are schools out there that advertise that you can get ahead by spending hundreds of hours (and thousands of your hard-earned dollars) by enrolling in their programs. Why not spend those resources instead preparing yourself to pass the ALS certification exam.
The prerequisite experience to apply for ALS certification is minimal – one year of general office experience or completion of a NALS Legal Training Course or other accredited business/legal course – the NALS Basic Manual for the Lawyer’s Assistant and The Gregg Reference Manual. Both are available from the source listed at
http://www.nals.org/?page_id=458 for less than the price of a pair of Manolo Blahnik stilettos on eBay.
NEXT ISSUE: Information article; information February CLE and some teaser details of March CLE.
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and got lots of shopping done on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. I am ready for a few cooler temperatures and the smell of fresh baked cookies soon!
I also hope you have all had the chance to sign up for the upcoming December CLE education on Ethics. Also dont forget about the January CLE education on Bankruptcy. If not, please take the time to do so now. You will not want to miss out on the Ethics 101 (local, federal, and social media).
On November 28, 2011, NALS of West Coast Florida became an official chapter of NALS. The best day ever.......................
The legal field is always changing, and the most talented legal professionals are always learning. A successful paralegal is alert, curious and, like a magpie, is a seeker and hoarder of shiny new information.
Reprinted with permission of Lynne J. DeVenny, Author/Blogger at Practical Paralegalism, http://www.practicalparalegalism.com/ ”.
Upcoming Education on www.nals.org
December 1 - Coaching & Mentoring: Future Leaders Development
(free to members of NALS! -- need to join - please find the link on our home page)
December 8 - Medicaid Planning (CLE) Estate Planning/Family Law
An overview of the complex federal Medicaid rules and process that covers the what, who, when, where and how's to manage the cost of staying in a nursing home.
Presented by P. Haans Mulder, JD, MST, CFP, Cunningham & Dalman P.C. (MI)
INSTRUCTIONS TO ACCESS WEBINARS: Click on the WebEd link above and complete registration form as directed. WebEd sessions are multimedia webinars. Registration fees for each CLE session are $35 for NALS members and $50 for non-members. Registered attendees are provided the audio portion of the Webinar at no cost; a toll-free number is provided with your registration. For special group rates or to request a group discount, please email WebEd@nals.org. All attendees must register in order to receive Certificates of Attendance and CLE credit. If you have more questions, please email WebEd@nals.org.
Tables of Authorities, Part II (CLE) Litigation/Civil Law
Presented by Carly Schoner, Paralegal, Renaud Cook Drury Mesaros, PA (AZ)
Corporate Law Session (CLE) Corporate Law
Next Month's edition - update on the CLE education for January of NALS of West Coast Florida. An information article.
Thank you for your interest in NALS of West Coast Florida. I promise you are going to truly enjoy this organization and will love the education and networking you will receive from such.
NALS of West Coast Florida will be providing its members with quality education in a variety of fields of law at an affordable price. We also plan on having wonderful opportunities for networking through our conferences both locally, regionally and nationally.
Every issue of this newsletter will have an informative article within the field. Great plans are already being made for such. If you would like to write an article for the newsletter, please contact Dawn Fountain.
Be sure to check out the certification opportunities as well. This organization has some amazing opportunities for continuing education and certification that I would encourage any member to take advantage of.
The next national conference will be in Tulsa, OK on March 1-3, 2012 - Professional Development & Education Conference. Click here for more information and for registration. Hope to see you there!!!!
BANKRUPTCY UPDATES: For the state of Florida, there are some new administrative rules to be aware of.
In the next issue - there will be information about our December meeting, our membership mixer/drive...... and so much more.