Paralegal Knowledge Institute Makes Its Debut

 Logo.PKI.medium Attention experienced paralegals!  There's a new outfit in town, the Paralegal Knowledge Institute (www.paralegalknowledge.com) that launches this week. 

Designed specifically for the paralegal assignment, the Institute is offering gold-standard courses, webinars and publications.  The purpose of the Institute is to bring to the paralegal community a new concept:  an organization dedicated strictly to the career advancement of the experienced paralegal.  The difference between the Institute and other training companies is that the Institute is strictly dedicated to paralegal continuing legal education while in other organizations, paralegal training is a division of a larger company, generally dedicated to attorney training.

"We see this as an opportunity to give paralegals cutting-edge skills training while at the same time keeping pace with a very competitive marketplace," says Allen Brody, General Counsel for the Institute.  "Paralegals today have much more sophisticated assignments handed to them than ever before.  The Institute prepares the experienced paralegal to stay competitive, get to the top and help their firm grow."

The Institute is offering online/interactive courses paralegals can take right at their computer.  Online courses are anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks, meeting 1 to 2 times per week for two hours.  The lively, interactive format allows the student to feel as though they were right in the classroom.  There is a live instructor you can speak to as well as see.  You can also speak and see other students as well. 

What is an online/interactive course?  You simply sign onto the interactive website where you can see the presenter, and if you have a webcam, others can see you as well, presuming you are willing. (There's nothing like taking a professional course in your bunny slippers!).    The Institute has offerings for paralegals at all experience levels as well as offering immediate download of pre-recorded online courses in the event you missed a live session. 

 Logo.PKI.small The Institute also offers over 100 webinars per year.  It is the new home for KNOW, The Magazine for Paralegals, a favorite e-magazine among paralegals.  There are forums, ebooks, newsletters, publications, resources and blogs to be found.  The Institute offers discounts to the OLP's eDiscovery certification exam, discounts to join OLP and the National Association of Legal Professionals (www.naflp.com) and discounts to Lexis/Nexis webinars and LORMAN seminars. The amount of education an experienced paralegal can receive just through the Institute is overwhelming.

Just a few of the online/interactive courses include:
eDiscovery 101A
Legal Project Management
Litigation Support 101A
Advanced Litigation Support
eDiscovery & GARP
eDiscovery: The Master Series
Elder Law and the Paralegal
Introduction to Bankruptcy
Introduction to Trademarks
Introduction to Patents
Leadership Skills for the New Manager
The Paralegal's Role in Corporate Transactions & Securities
UCC Searches
eDiscovery for Techies and more.

Webinars include:

The 3 C's of Legal Writing
Legal Project Management
Elder Care
How to Review Title Reports
International eDiscovery
Advanced eDiscovery

Legal Project Management
International eDiscovery
Leadership Through Corporate Writing
Tech Talk Tuesdays
Corporate Formation
Cultivating Leadership Skills
Brave New Writer: Leadership Through Corporate Storytelling
When It Was Due Yesterday
Legal Research and Writing
Drafting Motions
The Paralegal's Role at Trial
The Art of Writing on the Job
Managing Multiple Attorneys & Assignments and more.

The Institute offers two types of membership:  Free and an Upgraded Membership to the Paralegal Plus category.  Free membership offers a host of benefits while Paralegal Plus gives you that plus a free six week course worth $495-$895; a free subscription to KNOW, and lots of free eBooks and publications. 

Paralegals can purchase an Annual Pass called The Paralegal Passport that gives their entire department a one year annual pass to over 100 webinars for their entire department for one flat tuition. Firms such as Orrick;Williams Mullen; Jones Day; Kaiser; Intel; and other prestigious firms have taken advantage of the Paralegal Passport.

The Institute is offering a free ebook, "What They Didn't Teach You in Paralegal School" if you sign-up for free membership and the free ebook along with a one year subscription to KNOW if you upgrade your membership.  Anyone can take courses without joining, however, they leave behind hundreds of dollars in bonuses and discounts.  The Institute also offers scholarships to those with financial hardships.

The Advisory Board consists of a blue ribbon panel of experts including Robert Mongue, Esq., Assistant Professor at Ole Mississippi's Paralegal Program; Janet Powell, Sr. Paralegal & Case Manager at Jackson Lewis; Jean Watt, Paralegal Manager at Mayer Brown in Chicago; Linda McGrath-Cruz, co-founder of the Florida Registered Paralegal Committee and senior paralegal; Katie Thoma, Portfolio Manager at Loeb & Loeb; Mark Gorkin, LICSW, The Stress Doc; Charles Gillis, MBA, Executive Director, Munsch, Hardt Kofp & Harr, P.C. and Beth King, RP, Sr. Paralegal at Vestas-American Wind Technology along with several other well-known icons such as Celia Elwell, RP and others in the field.

Oh, yes.  And if you're wondering if I'm involved, yes, I am.  Education and writing being my first loves.  Husband, children and dog Max excepted of course.

Be sure to visit the website:  www.paralegalknowledge.com.  I think you will be very excited to finally see an organization strictly dedicated to the experienced paralegal giving you a broad range of resources and the community to support it.

Let me know your thoughts on this.

 

 


Research, 'Riting & Resources (Ok, it's a stretch - I agree)

Elwell.celia Celia Elwell, RP, is a very experienced paralegal in Oklahoma.  An avid researcher and writer, Celia sends me these wonderful listings filled with interesting articles, posts and valuable tidbits.  The light finally went on inside my head (where else?).  I thought, "Why am I not sharing these our readers?"  Enjoy!

SCOTUS Justices on the Language of Law: Advocacy and Legal Writing (and by Implication Legal Research, Too), Law Librarian Blog
http://bit.ly/n0jdbu
 

Standard of Review in Five Easy Steps, by Raymond Ward, the (new) legal writer
http://bit.ly/mzfiQT

 

The Winning Wal-Mart Brief: Six Returns, by Ross Guberman, Legal Writing Pro

http://bit.ly/rgp7oH

New Examples of Good Legal Writing, Legal Writing Prof Blog
http://bit.ly/mRWBBA

Legal Writing 201: 30 Suggestions to Improve Readability or How To Write For Judges, Not Like Judges, by Judge Mark P. Painter, Ohio First District Court of Appeals
http://www.plainlanguagenetwork.org/Legal/legalwriting.pdf

Oops, Thou Shalt Not Know How to Use One's Electronic Calendar without Risking Missing Court Filing Deadlines, Law Librarian Blog
http://bit.ly/qegYGC

 

ABA Ethics Panel Strikes Sensible Balance on Online Marketing, Robert Ambrogi’s Law Sites

http://bit.ly/mq8hHk

Connecticut becomes first state to require paid sick leave, by Sheri Qualters, The National Law Journal, Law.com

http://bit.ly/nxmL9s

Favorite E-Discovery Links, FloridaLawFirm.com and E-Discovery Team

http://floridalawfirm.com/links.html

"eDiscovery" in Domestic Relations Mutual Scheming: Digging up Dirt by "Friending" Ex-Spouse, Law Librarian Blog
http://bit.ly/kLqyDx

Facebook Discovery in Litigation, by Ronald B. Miller, Jr., The Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog
http://bit.ly/gwiYUQ

MySpace, Facebook, GPS and other e-Discovery: Coming Soon to a Texas Divorce Proceeding Near You, by DiscoveryResources.org Reporter
http://bit.ly/pYn4zQ

Are Facebook and MySpace Messages Subject to Discovery?, by Doug Cornelius, Compliance Building
http://bit.ly/p05n0V

10 Trial Practice Blogs Worth Bookmarking, by Gyi Tsakalakis, Lawyerist.com
http://lawyerist.com/10-trial-practice-blogs/

Top Encryption Techniques for Lawyers, by John Edwards, Legal Technology News, Law.com
http://bit.ly/jn7I3s

Top Ten Tips for Leveraging Cutting-Edge Legal Research Technology to Control Legal Costs and Drive Client Value, by Lydia E. Flocchini, Association of Corporate Counsel (with hat tip to Bill Statsky)
http://bit.ly/lBfNjm

Data: Driving Force in Web 3.0, EDD Update
http://bit.ly/lmj01u

In Trio of Big Business Cases, Justices Sharply Divide, by Marcia Coyle, The National Law Journal, Law.com
http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNLJ.jsp?id=1202498592542

Roberts Court extends line of permissive First Amendment rulings in video game case, by Tony Mauro, The National Law Journal, Law.com
http://bit.ly/lCHUjO

Clarifying personal jurisdiction . . . or not, by Howard Wasserman, PrawfsBlawg, http://bit.ly/iLFwqg

D.C. Divorce Lawyer, Nobel Laureate Feud, by Zoe Tillman, The National Law Journal, Law.com
http://bit.ly/k5Y8Vi

And in case you thought tort reform was slowing down . . . ., Civil Procedure and Federal Courts Blog
http://bit.ly/mmjG9q

Great Reading for the Week of July 4th, 2011, Jim Calloway's Law Practice Blog
http://bit.ly/knx5vq

National Conference of Bar Examiners
http://www.ncbex.org/

iPhoneJD - a blog for lawyers using iPhones and iPads
http://www.iphonejd.com/
10 iPhone Apps Every Lawyer Should Have, by Erin Geiger Smith, Business Insider Law Review
Adding Bates-numbers in Acrobat is easy (and powerful), PDF for Lawyers
Ready for CM/ECF Changes: Conforming Existing PDF Files to PDF/A, by Rick Borstein, Acrobat for Legal Professionals
http://adobe.ly/qXGtN2



"Keeping Current Can Be Hard to Do for Law Librarians"

I bet! In fact, I've often thought that being a law librarian would be a most interesting job. Just think about everything you would learn!

"Librarians are curious people. We like to skim magazines and books, we like to surf the Web and we have some interest in a lot of topics. A former co-worker used to say that librarians are 'trivial' in that we are always picking up trivia -- a definite asset when one needs to keep current in their profession.

"I was familiar with blogs, wikis and social software before I wrote 'The Many Hats of a Law Librarian: Part 3.'

[snip]

"So, keeping current has two parts: awareness of new or changing resources/activities and appreciation of possible uses or impact in your institution. Or, there may not be a use in your library. Mash-ups look to be a fun technology, but I do not see a need for it at my institution at this time. Law firm librarians may find it more interesting.

"Keeping current is not just for technology advances, although technology does drive much of the change and activity. My 'Hats' series [of articles] is an attempt to describe how the Internet and electronics have impacted and continue to impact our profession. Our traditional hats as modified by technology means current awareness crosses more lines and covers more topics than ever."

Author Tricia Kasting is a reference/government documents librarian at Hofstra University School of Law's Deane Law Library in Hempstead, N.Y.


"Cognition Launches New Linguistic Search Engine"

This new search engine could be very helpful for litigation support paralegals:

"Every searcher's fear is that a search will produce too little of what you want or too much of what you don't want. And, even if you get a nice collection of the right stuff, is it all the right stuff out there or does it omit things you need to see? In technical terms, does your search strategy balance precision and recall effectively? Linguistic and semantic search engines have long held out the promise of helping computers "understand" concepts, rather than just search for terms. Cognition Technologies has launched CognitionSearch [PDF link], a linguistic search engine that supports ontology, morphology, and synonymy, tapping one of the world's largest computational dictionaries. Initially, the company will market a vertical enterprise service for legal litigation support and for life science and health research. It also offers an open Web service to demonstrate the technology as applied to MEDLINE and PubMed content, to judicial and legislative sources, and to political blog content." [Emphasis added.]

Find more info about the company & its products here.


"Superior Legal Web Sites to Watch"

This article from our friends at Law Technology News offers a bunch of helpful law links:

"We delve into our browser's bookmarks this month, to review the recently launched Web sites of interest to individuals in the legal profession.

BLAWG SEARCH

"Several sites help you search the content of blogs, but offer no way to limit your search to law-related blogs.

"A new tool solves this search shortfall by indexing only the content of legal blogs.

"Called BlawgSearch, it is the creation of Tim Stanley and his team at the Web site design company Justia. (If Stanley's name sounds familiar, it's because he was cofounder of the original FindLaw).

It launched in November, with an index of some 600 blawgs, and as of this writing, has more than 1,000, with more being added regularly.

"The site includes a directory of blawgs arranged by categories and locations, as well as a directory of other blawg directories. The site's front page lists the most popular blawgs, highlights recent blawg posts and highlights a 'featured blawger.' Clouds display tags and search terms."

There's much, much more in the complete article....


Digitization of Print Materials

We all prefer digital over paper-based information, right? Right!

"Companies from Google to The Thomson Corporation, from Microsoft to LexisNexis, are all undertaking large digitization projects focusing on better access to paper-based resources. Undeniably, many law firms have a need for some of the digitized products on the market today, and there will soon be many more sources available.

"In acquiring access to new digital collections, law firms and other information consumers need to think about issues of cost, technology requirements and ease of use. Beyond that, merely acquiring a new collection will not ensure that all people who need the information will know it exists when the need for that information arises. This article addresses several topics relating to digitized collections, framing the discussion by first discussing two legal-specific digitization projects available for private law firms.

[snip]

  1. Hein Online. This is a collection of scanned law reviews and primary federal materials, such as the Federal Register and the Statutes at Large.
  2. LLMC-Digital [registration req'd]. The Law Library Microform Consortium (LLMC) was chartered in 1976 as a nonprofit library cooperative at the University of Hawaii.

"Google launches search engine for US patents"

This news from Google sure sounds smart to me. But will patent paralegals be impressed?

"Google was live [12/14/2006] with a service enabling Internet users to search through the more than seven million patents granted in the United States.

"The beta, or test, version of Google Patent Search lets people sift through patents granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office as long ago as 1790 by using inventors' names, filing dates, patent numbers or key words.

"Searches return information about the inventor and provide patent details online page-by-page."

I've never worked in this field, but was completely fascinated by the cool stuff I found!


"Long Awaited New Edition of The Legal Research Dictionary Now Available"

Just announced on the Law Librarian Blog:

"With ths work one can find the definitions of hundreds of terms used in legal research and bibliography. The dictionary coverage includes the judicial, legislative and executive branches of federal, state, and local government. This handy reference work is useful for law librarians, paralegals, public librarians, law review staff, and law students during first year legal research and writing, and advanced legal research courses."

You can find more info & buy this book (for $26.00) here.


"Pushing Legal Research Beyond Google"

Good article about Internet research, specifically for paralegals:

"When it comes to sleuthing for information there are no hard and fast rules for paralegals, except maybe this one: Don't ignore the Internet.

"The courts may notice if you do.

"Last year, an Indiana appeals court agreed to dismiss a lawsuit because the plaintiff took three years to find a postal address and serve notice of his complaint. In a footnote [fn 3, p 13] to that published opinion [PDF link in article], Judge Michael Barnes noticed there was no evidence the plaintiff had tried looking on the Internet to find defendant Joe Groce. And the court was Google-savvy.

"'In fact, we discovered, upon entering 'Joe Groce Indiana' into the Google search engine, an address for Groce that differed from either address used in this case, as well as an apparent obituary for Groce's mother that listed numerous surviving relatives who might have known his whereabouts,' Barnes pointed out.

"Mark Rosch likes to highlight cases like that when he leads seminars about online research for Internet for Lawyers, the Southern California consulting firm he and his wife, Carole Levitt, have run since 1999."