NJSBA Board of Trustees Report 
Oct. 14, 2022 
Attorney fees in retainer agreements: The New Jersey State Board Association’s Board of Trustees advanced advocacy on attorney retainer agreements. The trustees agreed to submit additional comments to the Judiciary on whether attorney retainer agreements may prohibit a client from settling a case if the settlement waives the lawyers’ fees or costs. Those comments reemphasize the NJSBA’s position that a settlement should not be prohibited in such circumstances but that retainer agreements should address the payment of fees if the terms of settlement do not. The NJSBA has advocated on issues related to retainer agreements as an amicus party in Balducci v. Cige. The Association also served on the special Judiciary committee formed following the Balducci decision and submitted comments on recommendations made by the state’s Advisory Committee on Professional Ethics. 
In a letter to Administrative Director of the Courts Judge Glenn A. Grant, the NJSBA stated that lawyers and clients should discuss the potential for a settlement without attorneys’ fees at the outset and decide how attorneys’ fees will be paid in that situation. “The retainer agreement should specifically address how the fees will be computed and clearly advise the client what they will be responsible for if fees are not part of an ultimate settlement. This will ensure clients can make an informed decision if presented with such a settlement option,” the letter stated. 
CLE meeting update: The Board approved a recommendation from the CLE Advisory Committee and Membership Committee to revise the Association’s policy regarding section/committee/division continuing legal education meetings. The Trustees approved a policy change to clarify and expand times when the groups may hold such meetings and enhance member engagement. The policy says no section, division or committee events that offer continuing legal education credit shall be scheduled in the one month directly preceding the NJSBA Annual Meeting or between Thanksgiving and December 31 without approval. 
Supplemental information: Read on for details about events and issues of concern to the legal community.
Comments on the final report from the NJSBA Commission on Racial Equity in the Law are still being accepted. Please feel free to circulate.
The NJSBA’s Putting Lawyers First Task Force is seeking feedback on the state’s ethics and fee arbitration systems. It hopes to hear from attorneys and take their suggestions on how these systems can be improved. Please share this brief survey. The responses received will be crucial for the Task Force to target the most pressing areas of need and determine a path forward.
The NJSBA welcomes input on attorneys’ experience with Madden assignments in furtherance of its efforts to address their impact on litigants and attorneys. Complete a short survey here. Find out about the NJSBA's efforts and get ethics credits at a Madden Summit later this month. Register here.
The NJSBA is hosting several Member Celebration Days events from Oct. 24-27. It is a series of programs designed to showcase the value of NJSBA membership. Find out about the weeklong celebration, including a job fair, open house, practice consultations and a trust accounting seminar here.


Founded in 1899, the NJSBA is the largest organization of attorneys, judges and legal professionals in New Jersey. At the core of our mission is improving the lives of our members, advancing the rule of law and serving as the voice of the profession. With 85 sections and committees, the NJSBA allows attorneys to benefit from being part of the most wide-reaching legal association in the state, while still cultivating expertise and building networks within specialized practice areas.



The New Jersey State Bar Association is committed to promoting and fostering a diverse and inclusive bar association. The Association recognizes that the broad concept of diversity includes race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, age and disability. The NJSBA fosters and promotes an inclusive environment that gives value to the unique contributions of diverse individuals and organizations in all aspects of the Association.

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From section, committee and division meetings with valuable CLE credit, to receptions and dinners and special events, the New Jersey State Bar Association regularly holds meetings so our members can meet their mandatory CLE requirements and network with the state’s largest attorney membership.

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2024 Mid-Year Meeting

The New Jersey State Bar Association is thrilled to announce the 2024 Mid-Year Meeting will be held in Dublin, Ireland at The Shelbourne Hotel, Nov. 2-9.

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The New Jersey State Bar Association is thrilled to announce the 2025 Family Law Retreat will be held in Mexico, San José del Cabo from March 23-27.

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Lawyers aren't taught practice management skills, and the NJSBA is here to fill the gap — no matter whether you are just starting out, mid-career or thinking about wrapping up their practices. Our PracitceHQ is here to help with webinars, informative articles, free consultations, comparison charts and so much more.

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