Judges to Offer Insights into Best Practices in Courtrooms

OBA Bench Bar Briefing
By 
Scott Stewart
The Daily Record

The Omaha Bar Association is inviting attorneys who want to sit down with judges to discuss best practices in Nebraska courtrooms to attend its upcoming Bench Bar Briefing on Friday, Aug. 16.

Several judges will discuss what attorneys should do and avoid in their courts, as well as discovery, depositions and pre-trail motions. They’ll also answer questions from the audience.

“We just enjoy such a close relationship with the judiciary,” OBA executive director Dave Sommers said. “One thing that really stood out last year was talking about how the bench is changing, especially in Sarpy County. The bench is getting younger, and those younger judges, they really like the procedure. They follow procedure. They like to stick to the rules that are written down.”

The briefing will feature judges from several different courts:

• James Mastellar of the Douglas County District Court

• Jonathan Papik of the Nebraska Supreme Court

• Marcela Keim of the Douglas County Court

• Stefanie Martinez of the Sarpy County District Court

• Michael Nelson of the U.S. District Court

• Julie Martin of the Nebraska Workers’ Compensation Court.

The OBA restarted the annual tradition last year, Sommers said. The aim to is have new tips at this year’s briefing, so those who attended last year are encouraged to consider coming back again.

Sommers said the content will be a mix of basic and advanced material, so the briefing should be valuable to practicing attorneys at various stages of their careers.

Anyone planning to attend with questions should let Sommers know so judges have an opportunity to consider an answer in advance, he said.

The Aug. 16 event runs 2 to 4:15 p.m. on the seventh floor of the AIM Building, 1905 Harney St. Participants will receive two hours of continuing legal education credits. The Bench Bar Briefing is free for OBA members and $50 for non-members.

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