This fall, the Maryland Institute for Continuing Professional
Education of Lawyers (MICPEL) is expanding its audio-visual media library to
enhance continuing legal education (CLE) offerings for Maryland attorneys.
Catering to the convenience of attorneys, MICPEL is launching a new line of
audio-video products so attorneys have greater electronic access to important
legal information. This valuable CLE attorney resource will unveil a series
of new audio CDs and DVD seminars so practitioners may take advantage of distance
learning and enjoy MICPEL’s extensive menu of selections in the comfort
of their offices, cars and homes.
MICPEL has catered to the CLE needs of Maryland lawyers for
28 years, offering special programming and publications to sharpen their legal
skills and keep them abreast of the latest legal trends and new laws. In light
of today’s high-tech market, it is focusing on advanced technology to
better service practitioner needs in the electronic age. Through distance learning,
MICPEL gives attorneys electronic access to CLE programs and publications,
enabling them to conveniently participate in programs and conduct transactions
from their offices.
At this time, MICPEL is perfecting its low-tech offerings
while it develops high-tech methodology so it may eventually provide practitioners
with a comprehensive CLE e-commerce system. “We are capitalizing on advanced
technology so attorneys will find it more affordable and easier to use,” states
MICPEL Executive Director Brent Burry.
“Our goal is to serve the needs of Maryland lawyers,” emphasizes
“Across the country, most Bar Association affiliated CLE programs are
experiencing a decrease in attendance at seminars. I think this is a function
of modern-day law practice. Time is at a premium for lawyers, and attending
a CLE program can be a true sacrifice.”
Thus, MICPEL is catering to the needs of Maryland attorneys
by developing technology to give practitioners greater electronic accessibility
to its array of resources so that they may select and participate in programs
at their convenience in their offices or cars and on the weekend. “It’s
a handy way to get the latest, updated legal information whenever and wherever
it best suits the attorney,” Burry adds.
“It is amazingly affordable, too,” Burry continues. “The
old-fashioned seminar attendance involved costs for the seminar as well as
related out-of-office travel expenses. Through electronic access, you have
the added convenience of cost-savings and no lost billable time while out of
MICPEL’s new products continue to offer excellent educational
value to all MSBA members, and MCLE credit, where desired, is built into the
system. MSBA members still receive a $30 discount on all live MICPEL programs
as a membership service, and young attorneys who are members of MSBA’s
Young Lawyers Section receive an additional $20 discount. MSBA Section members
receive an additional $20 member discount when they attend a live program sponsored
by their Section.
In addition to expanded electronic offerings, MICPEL recently
released a number of new publications to assist Maryland lawyers in the everyday
practice of law. The new third edition of Pleading Causes of Action in Maryland,
unveiled at MSBA’s Annual Meeting, covers most types of initial pleadings
encountered in the practice of law. A MICPEL bestseller, this publication serves
as the starting point for drafting virtually all pleadings in Maryland.
Another valuable resource, the 2004 Supplement to Civil
Pattern Jury Instructions, contains commentary and notes on the use of
numerous instructions as well as updated, relevant case laws and statutes.
The popular Gordon on Maryland Foreclosures Manual, debuting in its
fourth edition, serves as the authority on the state’s mortgage foreclosure
process. This “bible” on foreclosure, according to Burry, is
easier to use and features all sample forms, pleadings and exhibits, now
on CD instead of floppy disk.
The second edition of Maryland Product Liability Law is
now available, too. Updated after 14 years, this new and expanded reference
document focuses on the black letter law of product liability actions and trials
of these cases. Plus, Contract Drafting and Review for the Maryland Lawyer “fills
a real gap,” Burry notes, by helping transactional lawyers look at pertinent
issues. This manual contains a comprehensive list of considerations and practical
issues in contractual agreements.
At the present time, MICPEL is preparing for the second phase
of its technological advancement and Marketing Coordinator Alana Smith and
Program Attorney Tony DePastina are working with the University of Baltimore
to perfect its new methodology. “In the near future, we will have online
capability,” concludes Burry, “and our text, video and audio will
all be available electronically.”
Created in 1976 by MSBA, the University of Baltimore School
of Law and the University of Maryland School of Law, MICPEL serves as the Maryland
State Bar Association’s CLE arm. Over the years it has constantly modified
its array of CLE programs and publications to meet the changing needs of the
MICPEL continually adapts to the legal market’s changing
dynamics and offers a delivery system that utilizes various technologies, user-friendly
programming formats and other contemporary innovations to advance everything
from electronic communication to distance learning. It is and has always been
a valuable CLE resource for all Maryland lawyers. For additional information,
visit MICPEL’s website, www.micpel.edu,
or contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.