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ALA to host roundtable luncheon; Event to feature training and 'Appellate Jeopardy'

By Russell Boniface | Apr 27, 2016

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The Appellate Lawyers Association (ALA) will sponsor its annual "Roundtable Luncheon" on May 13 in Collinsville to honor the Justices of the Fifth District Appellate Court.

The event will also include an appellate practice seminar.

At the luncheon, Third District Justice William E. Holdridge and Fifth District Justice Melissa A. Chapman will recognize retiring Justices Bruce D. Stewart and S. Gene Schwarm for their service on the Fifth District Appellate Court.

“The Appellate Lawyers Association is a statewide bar association made up of attorneys who handle appeals and the judges who hear them,” Richard Chase, co-chair, ALA Seminars Committee and coordinator of the event, told the Record. “We have an annual luncheon in each of the five appellate districts designed to give attorneys a chance to converse with an appellate judge. Every table will have a judge, hopefully,”

Chase noted that the luncheon helps young lawyers feel less intimidated by judges and gives the judges a chance to mingle with local lawyers.

Following the recognition, the ALA will present a seminar, part of which will highlight “Preserving Issues for Appellate Review.”

“It will feature prominent attorneys who are going to role play how you preserve issues for appellate review in court,” said Chase. “That’s important because if you don’t properly raise an issue before the trial court and you waived it for purposes of appeal, you lost that issue forever. In the heat of the trial it’s easy to forget to preserve an issue for appellate review properly.”

The second section of the seminar training will feature “Appellate Jeopardy,” modeled after the popular TV game show.

“There will be two appellate attorneys competing against each other, and some of the question are going to be humorous,” said Chase. “For example, a question might be ‘when was the Illinois Supreme Court building dedicated?’ The answer is 1908, which was also the last year the Chicago Cubs won the pennant.”

The moderator will ask the audience whether the answers are correct.

“There will be audience participation,” said Chase. “It’s good to make trainings entertaining.”

The last part of the event will include a judicial panel featuring four of the judges from the Fifth District Appellate Court.

“They will be asked questions by the moderator and the audience about appellate practice,” Chase said. “That is a popular program with attorneys because, unlike trial matters, a lot of what goes on in the court of appeals is really hidden from view. This is a peek behind the curtain as to how appellate judges decide cases and what they think is best practice in the court of appeals. You can learn things you wouldn’t otherwise know. “

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