The Atlanta Lawyer December 2018 / January 2019 - Page 11

ing, LLP and Shannon Sprinkle of Carlock Copeland and Stair, LLP. These presenters reminded attendees of the importance of these matters and stressed the importance of consulting with others to get feedback, providing the potential client with a writing that contains adequate informa- tion and detail about risks and reasonable alternatives without omitting pertinent information and recommending the potential client consult with an independent counsel. Anuj Desai of Arnall Golden Greg- ory LLP, Bianca Motley Broom of Miles Mediation & Arbitration and Clyde Mize of Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP presented the session on “Acknowledging and Interrupt- ing Implicit Bias.” Implicit bias is created by the things we see, the things we hear, and the things we experience. Stereotype activation is ingrained in all of us; we can- not stop our brains from thinking about a stereotype, but we can control it and set up practical ways to control it. As many of us know, law is not a diverse profession, but lawyers and our clients are becom- ing more diverse. To ensure the di- versity, it is helpful to create aware- ness in the organization about bias and stereotypes. It is also helpful to standardize interviews and make them blind (like the television show The Voice) instead of only hiring candidates who are referred to you. In law, there is bias about gender and bias about race. Wom- en, especially women of color, face increased bias. They feel like they have to walk the tightrope between masculine and feminine. Their commitment and competence are often questioned because of having children. Moreover, women and people of color often feel like they need to go above and beyond to be on the same playing field as a white male. Examine your firm’s policy on how work is assigned, how raises are calculated, how promotions are given, etc. to determine if changes should be made to curtail bias. The speakers recommended visiting the website www.biasinterrupters. org to assist you in this endeavor. It is aspirational to overcome bias in the practice of law, yet it is both professional and ethical to work towards that goal. Next, attendees learned about “Preserving ESI and your Sanity: Best Practices in eDiscovery.” The panel was comprised of Larry Kunin of Morris, Manning & Mar- tin, LLP, Kevin Patrick of Kevin Patrick Law and Harry Winograd of Bodker, Ramset, Andrews, Win- ograd & Wildstein, PC. Electronic information, and the storage of same, is a relatively new area of law. Georgia law does not provide much guidance on these issues. Of course, it is not reasonable to keep every piece of electronic in- formation and it is good practice to establish a routine deletion policy. It becomes necessary to keep the information once someone has reason to believe the information will be needed in litigation. To ensure information is maintained, send a spoliation notice to anyone you believe has pertinent informa- tion. Many lawyers rent machines – like copy machines – and those machines have hard drives. When getting a new machine, it is pru- dent to require that the hard drive from the machine being replaced is destroyed. Finally, the day concluded with a presentation entitled “Unbundled legal services and limited scope representation,” which was pre- sented by Margaret “Max” Ru- thenberg-Marshall of The Ruthen- berg-Marshall Law Firm. Limited scope representations are not full representation, rather for a specific or finite event like going to court one time, drafting a pleading or attending a mediation. This type of representation is increasing in prevalence as 62% of legal house- holds have at least one legal issue per year; the average household has 2.88 legal issues per year. Of those, only 3.8% pay for a lawyer – 74% attempt to represent them- selves and 17% do not do anything to resolve the issue. Accordingly, limited scope services may create a path to legal representation that is more affordable to the average household. Max cautioned that not all matters are meant for limited scope representation, so it is im- portant to vet the situation care- fully. Moreover, when handling a limited scope representation situ- ation, ensure you have been clear with the client as to the lawyer’s role, have the client sign to indicate his or her understanding of the lawyer’s role. The Official News Publication of the Atlanta Bar Association THE ATLANTA LAWYER 11