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March 2002 Archives

March 7, 2002

Volume 15 No. 2 March 2002


* The President's Message: Is the Office of Professional Conduct the Grand Inquisitor? What Lawyers Need to Know if Faced with a Bar Complaint
* Nexus & Remote Sellers: The Taxation of Electronic Commerce
* Only Until Payday: A Primer on Utah's Growing Deferred Deposit Loan Industry
* How the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Act of 2001 Affects Basic Estate Planning Strategy - Tax and Non-Tax Considerations
* Views From the Bench: 15th Anniversary of the Utah Court of Appeals

The Legal Assistant Division Needs You!

The Legal Assistant Division (“LAD”) needs you! The LAD and our profession are facing significant challenges in the areas of licensing, independent practice, the unauthorized practice of law, compensation, liability insurance, benefits, and the like. This is your profession, and these challenges and the changes wrought thereby will affect you and your career. I urge your participation in the business and leadership of the LAD. There are numerous director positions open this year. There is a lot of work to be done on both new and on-going projects. Perhaps the position as Chair of the LAD is not something you envision for yourself; however, there are many other opportunities to serve on the Board of the LAD and, as a member of the Board, to actively participate in the development of plans to deal with the various projects and challenges of the LAD and our profession. Not only that, it is an excellent opportunity to meet other members of our profession.

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Discipline Corner


DISBARMENT
On December 4, 2001, the Honorable Lee Dever, Third Judicial District Court, entered Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law disbarring Stephen G. Bennett from the practice of law for violation of Rules 1.2(a) (Scope of Representation), 1.4(a) (Communication), 1.15(a), (b), and (c) (Safekeeping Property), 8.1(b) (Bar Admission and Disciplinary Matters), and 8.4(c) (Misconduct) of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

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Only Until Payday: A Primer on Utah's Growing Deferred Deposit Loan Industry

Editor's note: The opinions in this article come from Mr. Peterson's student research project, are his alone, and in no way reflect upon the United States or the Tenth Circuit. This article is derived in part from a winning entry in the 2001 Utah State Bar Business Law Writing Competition, sponsored by the Utah State Bar Business Law Section. The original and more extensive study of consumer credit is entitled "Failed Markets, Failing Government or Both? Learning from the Unintended Consequences of Utah Consumer Credit Law on Vulnerable Debtors" and is published in the 2001 Utah Law Review.

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How the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Act of 2001 Affects Basic Estate Planning Strategy - Tax and Non-Tax Considerations


At the outset I should clarify a term. When I use the term "transfer taxes" I am collectively referring to both the federal gift and estate taxes. Originally, because of lower relative gift tax rates, it was better to give away property to the kids during life than to wait until death before transferring wealth to the next generation. Then after 1976 we unified the transfer tax structure by making the transfer tax rate schedules the same for both transfers during life and transfers at death.

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Nexus & Remote Sellers: The Taxation of Electronic Commerce

Although Congress has recently renewed the Internet Tax Freedom Act ("ITFA" or the "Act"),1 its renewal primarily serves to highlight popular misconceptions about its scope and the fundamental issues it does not address. The most significant of these issues is whether state and local jurisdictions ("taxing jurisdictions") may impose sales and use tax collection obligations on non-domiciliary Internet-based vendors ("remote vendors"). This issue is resolved by determining whether a remote vendor has a sufficient physical presence in a jurisdiction ("nexus") to constitutionally justify the imposition of tax collection responsibilities for sales made to local customers. This determination is substantially complicated because of the fundamental nature of electronic commerce ("e-commerce"), particularly the growing prevalence of "bricks-and-clicks" relationships between online and offline businesses.

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State Bar News

Commission Highlights

During its regularly scheduled meeting December 7, 2001, which was held in Salt Lake City, the Board of Commissioners received the following reports and took the actions indicated.

1. Scott Daniels encouraged Commission attendance at the upcoming NCBP Midyear Meeting, Western States Bar Convention and the Jack Rabbit Bar Conference.

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Is the Office of Professional Conduct the Grand Inquistor? - What Lawyers Need to Know if Faced with a Bar Complaint

Without doubt the most unpleasant interaction any lawyer may have with the State Bar occurs upon the filing of a "bar complaint." Although most lawyers will never be faced with a complaint, many will, no matter how careful or ethical they may be. Some complaints are warranted; others are not. For lawyers who practice in certain areas (notably domestic law) bar complaints are as inevitable as death or taxes.

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Utah Multijurisdictional Practice Rule

In October of 2000, the Multijurisdictional Practice ("MJP") Task Force was established by the Board of Bar Commissioners to examine whether or not the present practice of admitting lawyers to the Utah State Bar was serving the public, the legal profession, and the needs of clients. Another factor prompting the formation of the Task Force was the fact that Utah had been invited to join with the neighboring states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho to participate in a "Pacific Northwest Coalition" which would cooperate on licensing issues and streamline the admission of attorneys practicing in Coalition states. The Board asked the MJP Task Force to investigate whether or not it made sense for Utah to participate in the Pacific Northwest Coalition.

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What About the Supreme Court’s Advisory Rules Committees?

Article VI, Section 4 of the Utah Constitution provides the Supreme Court with the authority to adopt rules of procedure and evidence to be used in the state courts as well as rules governing the practice of law. To assist the Court with these responsibilities, the Court established a Supreme Court Advisory Committee in each of the following areas: civil procedure, criminal procedure, juvenile court procedure, appellate procedure, evidence, and the rules of professional practice.

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15th Anniversary of the Utah Court of Appeals


Introduction
The seven founding judges of the new Utah Court of Appeals took their oaths of office on January 17, 1987. Utah became the thirty-seventh state to organize a court of appeals. The first was Ohio in 1851 and the last was Mississippi in 1995.2 In 2004, Nevadans will vote on the formation of a state appellate court.3 Our initial judges and limited staff were required to expend enormous effort to simultaneously set up the court, begin processing one-half of the Supreme Court's one-thousand case backlog and take on new filings. In order to survive and succeed, the judges adopted the motto, "We Are Driven."

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About March 2002

This page contains all entries posted to Utah Bar Journal in March 2002. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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