Daily Briefs (June 9)

OCBA co-sponsors judicial candidate forums for voters
For the third judicial election cycle, the Oakland County Bar Association has partnered with the League of Women Voters Oakland Area and the Detroit Free Press to host judicial candidate forums in all races where there are contested seats.

The purpose of this partnership is to disseminate information about judicial candidates as widely as possible and to assist citizens in becoming far more knowledgeable and informed voters. 

The forums are open to the public and will be taped so that they may be aired on cable channels in the communities where the races take place and can be loaded on the OCBA website as streaming video.

Additionally, all candidates have been asked to complete a Judicial Candidate Questionnaire. OCBA members and the members of the community will be able to read the candidates’ questionnaires as they answered them and watch them at the forum. Candidate questionnaires are available on the OCBA website.

Each forum consists of two panelists who ask questions of each of the candidates. One panelist is a member of the Oakland County Bar Association and one panelist is from the Detroit Free Press. The forum is moderated by a representative of the League of Women Voters. In each forum, the community is invited to attend and submit questions for responses by the candidates.

For additional information, go to www.ocba.org.

Detroit attorney asked to serve on Solutions on Self-Help Task Force
Kenneth M. Essad, a partner in the Detroit law firm of Corbet, Shaw, Essad & Tucciarone, P.L.L.C., has been asked by Michigan Supreme Court Justice Marilyn Kelly to serve on the newly created Solutions on Self-Help Task Force.

According to Essad, the SOS Task Force is charged with developing resources for non-lawyers who represent themselves in legal proceedings. The Task Force will create an interactive and user-friendly self-help website with centralized, high quality resources in several languages and develop a self-help curriculum for judicial and court staff training as well as provide courts with suggestions and tools to improve self-help services.

“The state’s current struggling economy has rendered more people in serious need of legal services and simultaneously made those services harder to afford,” said Chief Justice Kelly when announcing formation of the Task Force.

“The SOS Task Force will help provide an effective and accessible alternative for people around the state,” said Essad. “I look forward to being a part of this important initiative.”

Essad has broad-based experience in civil defense trial work, case evaluations, mediations and private arbitrations. He currently he is President of the Arab-American Bar Association and serves as a hearing panelist for the Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission.