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MONTGOMERY BAR ASSOCIATION

DESCRIPTIONS OF COMMITTEES AND SECTIONS

ALTERNATE DISPUTE RESOLUTION COMMITTEE

This committee facilitates MBA member use of alternate dispute resolution techniques including mediation, private arbitration, mini-trials and other methods of resolving disputes outside the public court system.

AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP AND LAW DAY COMMITTEE

A merger of the former "American Citizenship" and "Law Day" Committees, this committee spearheads MBA's efforts to educate the public on the importance of American law and lawyers in society.  The committee continues to plan and implement two MBA traditions -- naturalization ceremonies for new American citizens in Montgomery County and the Law Day celebration, which takes place every spring.

AUDIT COMMITTEE               

This committee oversees the MBA’s yearly expenditures and assists the MBA's accountants in conducting annual audits.

AWARDS COMMITTEE

This committee sets criteria for Association awards to be distributed.

BANKRUPTCY/CREDITORS AND DEBTORS RIGHTS COMMITTEE

This committee, formerly known as the Collection/Foreclosure/Bankruptcy Committee, educates practitioners and acts as a forum for discussions on such topics as bankruptcy, foreclosure, confession of judgments, execution upon judgments, tax sales and other creditor/debtor issues.

BENCH-BAR COMMITTEE

This long-standing committee maintains and fosters the great relationship between the MBA and the judges of the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas, and it serves as the primary vehicle for the exchange of information between the Bench and the Bar.  In addition, it allows the MBA and its committees to forward ideas and suggestions to the Bench and enables the Bench to request feedback from the MBA concerning proposed rules and administrative changes within the court.

BUSINESS, BANKING AND CORPORATE COUNSEL COMMITTEE

This committee educates MBA members about corporate, banking and business law issues and facilitates interaction between members serving as inside counsel and those serving as outside counsel.

BY-LAWS COMMITTEE

This committee reviews and recommends changes to the By-laws.

CHILD ADVOCATES COMMITTEE

With the formation of the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project in 2006, the Child Advocacy Committee and the Youth in the Law Committee were combined. The Child Advocates committee focuses on legal issues affecting young adults, such as guardianships, school violence, peer mediation programs, etc.

COLLABORATIVE LAW COMMITTEE

This committee brings attorneys together to share, learn, promote, establish and engage in Collaborative Practice as a recognized and commonly used method of conflict resolution.

COMMUNITY OUTREACH COMMITTEE

Originally created to provide MBA members the opportunity to educate community leaders working in fields outside the law about the Bar Association and its members’ work, this committee, which is made up of MBA members and non-attorneys, allows the two groups to work together to identify and meet the needs of the community.

CONSTRUCTION AND PUBLIC CONTRACT LAW COMMITTEE

This committee, a merger of the former Construction Law and Public Contract Committees, educates its members about issues pertaining to the construction industry and government and public contracting.

CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION COMMITTEE

This committee provides continuing legal education programs on substantive, practice-related subjects as well as professionalism and ethics for MBA members.

COUNSEL OF PAST PRESIDENTS

This committee consists of the past presidents of the MBA who act as a sounding board regarding new projects initiated by Bar leaders and provide insight and advice on various Association issues.

CRIMINAL DEFENSE COMMITTEE

This committee educates and provides a forum for MBA members who handle criminal defense cases.

DIVERSITY COMMITTEE

The Diversity Committee was created as a Task Force in 2007 and is open to all interested members.  The Committee meets regularly to discuss methods to promote diversity in the MBA and to address outreach initiatives to the entire Montgomery County legal community.

EDUCATION LAW COMMITTEE

This committee, which was created in 2017, provides a forum for discussion, education, and networking for MBA members who represent families and school districts in all education law-related matters.

ELDER LAW COMMITTEE

This committee, a combination of the former Elder Law and Mental Health Committees, addresses all issues pertaining to the elderly, physically disabled and mentally disabled, including topics such as nursing homes, assisted living, mental health hearings, ADA issues, special needs trusts, social security and durable powers of attorney. 

EMPLOYMENT AND LABOR LAW COMMITTEE

This committee educates and provides a forum for MBA members who represent employers and employees in private employment and organized labor settings.

ENVIRONMENTAL AND ENERGY LAW COMMITTEE

This committee educates and provides a forum for MBA members interested in environmental law issues.

FACILITIES COMMITTEE

The Committee shall review and recommend property, liability and workers compensation insurance, house and property expenditures, and acquisitions and dispositions of real and personal property, and shall meet any other needs as to the Association facilities as assigned by the President in conjunction with the Executive Director.

FEDERAL COURT PRACTICE COMMITTEE

This committee focuses on practice in the federal courts, particularly the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

FEE DISPUTE COMMITTEE

This committee conducts hearings on complaints initiated by clients of Montgomery County attorneys to determine whether those attorneys charged reasonable fees.  Five subcommittees, each comprised of groups of three attorneys, conduct the hearings and enter judgments concerning the fees charged.  The MBA president appoints members to this committee, and the committee does not hold meetings.  MBA members should direct requests to serve on the committee to the committee chair or the Bar Association president.

FINANCIAL COMMITTEE

This committee provides financial oversight to the Association, specifically with issues involving budgeting, investments, financial planning, and financial reporting.

FRANCHISING COMMITTEE

This committee provides a forum for and educates MBA members on issues pertaining to franchising and the increasingly important role franchising is playing in the business world.

GENERAL PRACTICE COMMITTEE

This committee provides a forum to address the issues faced by attorneys who practice in a wide, general area of civil law, regardless of the size of their practices.

GOVERNMENT RELATIONS COMMITTEE

This committee, which replaces the former Legislative Committee, addresses governmental relations between the MBA and Montgomery County officials, local municipal officials, state officials and federal officials in the legislative and executive branches.

HISTORICAL COMMITTEE

This committee engages the interest of MBA members in MBA history, preserves the history of the MBA and make the history easily accessible to MBA members.

IMMIGRATION COMMITTEE

This committee was created in response to the increasing importance of immigration law across practice areas, especially domestic relations and criminal law. The committee discusses ways in which immigration law practitioners can assist and serve as a resource for other attorneys, and develops programs designed to heighten awareness in the profession of the increasing – and often unique – legal needs of the immigrant community.

INSURANCE COMMITTEE

This committee reviews the coverage provided by health and property insurance providers and compares current coverage with coverage offered by other providers to ensure MBA members receive quality insurance at favorable rates.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND COMMUNICATIONS LAW COMMITTEE

This committee addresses all issues pertaining to intellectual property including patents, trademarks, computer law, electronic commerce, electronic communications and the ever-changing telecommunications industry.

INTERNATIONAL LAW COMMITTEE

This committee encourages and provides information and assistance to MBA members who practice international law.

JOINT LIAISON WITH ACCOUNTANTS COMMITTEE

Mergers of the largest accounting firms in the world, the encroachment of the accounting profession upon traditional “legal” practice and other changes in the accounting/business consulting profession created the need for discussion between accountants and lawyers. This committee provides a forum for such discussion.  Its structure mimics the structure of the Joint Liaison with Real Estate Professionals Committee.

JUDICIARY COMMITTEE

The Judiciary Committee of the Montgomery Bar Association is charged with interviewing and rating candidates for the position of judge on the Court of Common Pleas.  The Judiciary Committee is composed of lawyers of diverse background, ages, practices and geographic areas of Montgomery County.

LAW REPORTER COMMITTEE

This committee provides monitoring of and advice regarding the operation of the Montgomery County Law Reporter.

LAWYER REFERRAL SERVICE/MMLAP COMMITTEE

This committee supervises and promotes the Lawyer Referral Service and Modest Means Legal Access Program and ensures they operate as a consumer-friendly system that helps all segments of the public obtain legal services that meet their needs.

LONG-RANGE PLANNING COMMITTEE

This committee helps develop and manage the long-range planning of the MBA by regularly reviewing emerging trends in the legal profession to help prioritize the goals, objectives, roles, activities, and challenges of the Association.

MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT JUSTICE PRACTICE COMMITTEE

This committee is comprised of MDJ’s and attorneys who practice before them.  It addresses potential rule changes to help the courts run more efficiently from the perspective of both the Bench and the Bar.

MANAGING PARTNERS COMMITTEE

This committee gathers those who lead or manage law practices in Montgomery County to address business, staffing and new innovations affecting the practice of law in Montgomery County.  The committee has issued a managing partners survey and continues to monitor the state of the art developments in managing law practices.

MEDICAL-LEGAL COMMITTEE

This committee, the oldest continuously functioning joint liaison committee between lawyers and medical professionals in the country, promotes open dialogue between the legal and medical professions.

MEMBER SERVICES COMMITTEE

The Committee maintains and improves member services, and assists members in their professional lives. It is charged with maintaining and improving social programs; establishing outreach programs; reviewing publications; interfacing with the PBA and the PBI; and educating lawyers about advantages of Association membership.  The Committee also reviews the coverages provided by health, property, and liability insurance providers to members, and compares current coverages with coverages offered by other providers to ensure members receive quality insurance at favorable prices.

MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE

Members of this important committee interview candidates for membership in the various categories of the MBA.  This committee also formulates and implements plans for membership recruitment.

NOMINATING COMMITTEE

This committee is responsible for the recruitment, review and selection of candidates for Officers, Directors, and Judiciary Committee members.

PRO BONO/ACCESS TO JUSTICE COMMITTEE

This committee serves as a conduit between Montgomery County Legal Aid and the MBA.  It also develops approaches to address the growing Access to Justice gap in the County and opportunities for MBA members to volunteer legal services to non-profit corporations and organizations.

REAL ESTATE COMMITTEE

In 2011 the Municipal Law Committee was merged with the Real Estate Committee.  The functions of the committee remain the same, that being to educate and provide a forum for MBA members engaged in the practice of real estate, including purchase and sale, real estate development, zoning, and related real estate practice areas.

REAL ESTATE LIAISON COMMITTEE

This committee serves as a liaison between local realtors and MBA members involved in the practice of Real Estate Law.  Membership is appointed by the President for two-year terms.

RULES OF COURT COMMITTEE

The various Rules of Court Committees now fall under one Rules of Court Committee, which is made up of sub-committees that serve the same functions as the once separate committees.  The co-chairs of the Rules Committee oversee and coordinate the various sub-committees and serve as liaisons between the Board of Directors and the sub-committees.  Each sub-committee has co-chairs to facilitate the work of their sub-committee and answer to the Rules of Court Committee Co-Chairs.  Interested members are asked to sign up for one or more subcommittees of the Rules of Court Committee.

SIDEBAR COMMITTEE

The Sidebar committee publishes a quarterly newsletter which highlights achievements of individual bar members, alerts members to bar services and special events, reports on committee activities, educates and entertains the members.

SOLO /SMALL FIRM PRACTICE COMMITTEE

New for 2017, the Solo/Small Firm Committee will concentrate on the law practice management issues confronting the 21st Century solo and small firm practitioners.  Addressing issues such as technology, best-practices, time-management, personnel, vendors and marketing, the Committee will serve as a forum to exchange ideas and information to better serve our solo and small firm members. 

SPEAKERS BUREAU

This committee provides speakers on a variety of legal topics to organizations and groups interested in having an MBA member address them.  It educates the public on legal issues and exposes individual Bar members to members of the public who are interested in learning about the law.

UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE COMMITTEE

This extremely important committee addresses the unauthorized practice of law by various non-lawyers, including individuals and professions.  It monitors legislation proposed by certain interest groups, which would permit those groups to practice and/or engage in business in an area, which historically has been the province of the legal profession. 

WOMEN IN THE LAW COMMITTEE

This committee addresses the professional and personal issues affecting women who practice law.

WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMITTEE

This committee educates and serves as a forum for those interested in workers' compensation law.  

SECTIONS

FAMILY LAW SECTION

This extremely active section has various subcommittees that address virtually every area of family law.  The full committee holds monthly luncheon meetings, which address timely topics and serve as forums for communication between MBA members and the family court judges of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County. This section charges $45 per year in dues, which should be paid when annual MBA dues are paid.

PROBATE AND TAX SECTION

This section charges $20 per year in dues, which should be paid when annual MBA dues are paid.  This section serves as a forum for those lawyers engaged in the practice of probate, estate planning, orphan's court and tax.

TRIAL LAWYERS SECTION

Formerly the Trial Committee, this section serves the same functions and meets on the first Wednesday of each month, except for June, July and August, at the Blue Bell Inn.  Dues are $50.00 each year.

YOUNG LAWYERS SECTION

There are no dues charged for this section.  Every MBA member who is under the age of 35 or who has been in practice for less than five years is automatically a member of this section. The Young Lawyers Section is vibrant and active.  All young lawyers are strongly encouraged to sign up for at least one of the Young Lawyers Section sub-committees, such as Mock Trial Competition, Law School Liaison, Membership Services Liaison, etc.

Last updated December 21, 2016