Area attorneys, judges speak at Comparative Law seminar

Christina Stueve Hodges Sep. 7, 2012, 8:52am

(Left to right) Tom Jones, Stephen Corn, Tracy Zuckett, Pamela Meanes and Gordon Broom

Gerald Noce, HeplerBroom, LLC St. Louis and Gordon Broom, HeplerBroom, LLC Edwardsville

Tracy Zuckett, Moser & Marsalek, P.C. St. Louis, Tom Jones, Thompson Coburn, LLC, Belleville and Ransom Wuller, Freeark, Harvey & Mendillo, PC, Belleville

Andrew Wolkiewicz, Thompson Coburn, LLC St. Louis and Tom Jones, Thompson Coburn, LLC, Belleville

Kurt Hentz, HeplerBroom, LLC St. Louis, US District Judge Sue Myerscough (Central District of IL) and Troy Bozarth, HeplerBroom, LLC Edwardsville

Left to right, Tom Jones, Thompson Coburn, LLC Belleville, Stephen Corn, Craig & Craig, Mattoon, Tracy Zuckett, Moser & Marsalek, P.C. St. Louis, Pamela Meanes, Thompson Coburn, LLC St. Louis and Gordon Broom, HeplerBroom, LLC Edwardsville

More than 100 attorneys attended the Illinois and Missouri Comparative Law Seminar, hosted by the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel and Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers Friday at the Busch Stadium Conference Center.

Speakers included Gordon Broom of HeplerBroom in Edwardsville, Stephen L. Corn of Craig & Craig in Mattoon, Pamela Meanes of Thompson Coburn in St. Louis, Madison County Chief Judge Ann Callis and three federal judges.

The morning topic, "Trying cases in Illinois and Missouri," was about discovery, experts, third party practice, settlements, wrongful death cases and jury selection.

The conference is a joint seminar, comparing trial practice in Missouri and Illinois, said Troy Bozarth of HeplerBroom, a member of the event planning committee.

"The fact that we could do it at Busch Stadium makes it a fun event," said Bozarth, who planned to attend the evening game against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Tom Jones of Thompson Coburn wore a red Cardinals shirt while moderating the morning discussion.

One of the afternoon topics, "Practicing in Illinois and Missouri from a judicial perspective," discussed how trial lawyers confront ethical challenges, under pressure, with limited time to make decisions.

Afternoon speakers included Callis, U.S. District Judge Sue Myerscough of Springfield, U.S. District Judge Catherine D. Perry of the Eastern District of Missouri and Lisa VanAmburg, circuit judge in the City of St. Louis.

Attorneys also listened to talks about ethics in trial practice, and insurance coverage.

"We have a lot of members that are licensed in both states but might not get to both," Bozarth said.

"This is our first event like this," Bozarth said. "It's been very well-received."

Broom and Corn spoke during the panel that compared trying cases in Illinois and Missouri.

When Broom started his career, he said there were no limits on discovery, a time when attorneys learn about their clients' case. He spoke about how Illinois law limits discovery to three hours.

"The only way to get around it is to ask for relief," he said.

On the other hand, Meanes said that Missouri "really (is) the show-me state. There is no limitation on our request to produce."

Costs for attending the event were $350 for Illinois Association of Defense Counsel and Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers members and $450 for non-members. The cost included a ticket to the Cardinal game party suite, with food and drink provided for the Cardinals game that begins at 7:15 p.m.

The conference started at 8 a.m. A cocktail reception at 5 p.m. was to feature John Mozeliak, senior vice president and general manager of the Cardinals.

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