Letter From The President Of The New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association

2004-02-01 01:00

To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:

NJCCA has distributed to its members a notice written by Vice-President Lee Braem regarding the New Jersey Supreme Court's December 2003 announcement of the registration procedures for in-house counsel in New Jersey.Lee, who also published an article on the topic in the January issue of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, provided information about the Court's new rules and how to obtain further information.I commend these materials to you whether or not you are admitted in New Jersey.Our notice is available at the NJCCA and the MJP web pages at www.acca.com. To read Lee's article, visit www.metrocorpcounsel.com.

The Court's new rules require those in-house counsels working in, but not admitted to, this state to take steps to register or face disciplinary action by the Supreme Court of New Jersey for the unauthorized practice of law (UPL).Those who are already admitted owe it to themselves and to their colleagues to be able to spread the word about this procedure and to ensure that they themselves do not run afoul of the rules by assisting someone in the unauthorized practice of law.Regardless of how you may feel about the procedures and costs imposed by the Court, we are first and foremost attorneys bound to follow the rules adopted by the Court.

We have asked the law firms with which NJCCA interacts, such as sponsors and CLE providers, to circulate our notice to their corporate clients who may not be NJCCA members.You can do the same with your outside counsel.Our interest in avoiding UPL charges against an in-house counsel apply to all in-house practitioners, not just dues-paying members.

Some members have sent Lee questions and comments about the Court's rulemaking process, how the fees were set, and what options exist for people with varying unique situations.NJCCA, of course, cannot answer all the questions, but we are responding to each individual inquiry.In addition, NJCCA is also organizing a forum tentatively scheduled for March 3 for members to gather and discuss the rules, their implications and to provide an introduction to attorney regulation in New Jersey.

NJCCA will continue to review the Court's new rules and their implications for in-house counsel.Send us your questions, let us know your experiences and learn more about our March 3 forum by contacting NJCCA's Executive Director, Barbara Walder, at (973) 927-5622 or by e-mail at njcca41@aol.com.Your views will be shared with our Board and, if appropriate, NJCCA can share its views with the Court.

Your opinions shape what we do. I invite you to let us know what NJCCA can do to help you be the best in-house lawyer you can be.


Arthur H. Saiewitz