About this time of year, the job of Editor too often becomes one of cajoling one’s friends and acquaintances to submit articles for publication in The Brief. To be sure, we have been fortunate to have been able to meet our publication needs with articles and submissions which are of high quality and interest to our readers. On the other hand, it is my fervent desire to avoid resorting to republication of The Federalist Papers or other such material (though I would commend them to you for interesting reading). The devices we have employed to obtain articles have ranged from "the carrot" (submit an article to our writing contest and potentially win a cash prize and recognition) to "the stick" (I borrowed Glenn Gaffney’s baseball bat at our midyear meeting of committee chairs to "remind" them of their respective responsibilities to submit articles from their committees). Now it’s time to appeal to the mercenary in all of us.
Now in effect, the Illinois Supreme Court Rules regarding Minimum Continuing Legal Education provide that attorneys can ". . . earn credit for writing law-related articles in responsible legal journals or other legal sources, published during the two-year reporting period, that deal primarily with matters related to the practice of law, professionalism, diversity issues, mental illness and addiction issues, civility, or ethical obligations of attorneys." Supreme Court Rule 795 (d)(7). The author can accrue credit for up to one-half of the hours required for any reporting period. Hours spent researching the article as well as hours spent writing the article count towards the MCLE requirements. The year of publication will be the year in which the credit accrues and up to 10 hours can be carried forward. The rules require contemporaneous record keeping; I suggest simply opening a file against which the author "bills" his or her time. Our practice at The Brief is to provide every author with a copy of the magazine in which the magazine in which the article appears and a personal thank you from the editor which refers to the date of publication. Thus, someone who submits an article for publication this spring could easily pocket up to 10 hours of credit towards the required hours which would be available in the next reporting period.
We have determined to extend the deadline for submitting articles to the Anthony Peccarelli Writing Contest until May 1, 2006. I encourage you to reach for the carrot.
This month we have articles on lawyer to lawyer advertising, changes to Medicaid, responding to ARDC inquiries and interlocutory appeals in family law matters. I wish to thank this month’s lead articles editor, Anthony Abear for a job well done.
John Pcolinski, Jr., Editor