Practising Law Institute Helping Out Attorneys in Down Economy

By Gene Quinn
March 1, 2010

Every so often I do a post from the shameless commerce division, plugging the Practising Law Instituted (PLI), their programs, books or patent bar review.  PLI is a major sponsor of IPWatchdog.com, and I have taught their popular patent bar review course for the last 9 years, so my personal and professional connection with PLI is deep.  Over the past couple weeks I have been getting a number of e-mails from PLI and I wanted to bring attention to them in whatever high profile way I can.  PLI is, in my opinion, a great organization and I am proud to be associated with them.  They have great programs, particularly in the intellectual property, antitrust and securities areas.  Now they are making it as easy as possible for attorneys stressed by the economic downturn to participate and perhaps get some new training to make themselves more marketable, and to keep up with CLE requirements that don’t go away just because the market is bad.

PLI is offering scholarships for unemployed attorneys and they are also hosting Winning Strategies for Managing Your Career 2010 for the special price of $25.  From time to time PLI also gives away ethics credits for free, and pro bono training.  In reality, an announcement of scholarships and $25 programs hardly comes from the shameless commerce division, and for that reason I hope that you will consider helping spread the word.

On February 22, 2010, Vic Rubino, President of PLI, sent out the following e-mail:

During these difficult economic times, many attorneys find themselves in transition. The remnants of the events that have transpired over the past 18 months will remain with our industry for many years to come, and many firms have had to diversify their practice so as to remain relevant. As individual attorneys have had to acquaint themselves with new areas of practice, and displaced attorneys have had to meet their mandatory CLE requirements, PLI has been there to help.

PLI has been acting in service to the legal community since its inception in 1933. In accordance with our nonprofit mission, we have provided scholarships for attorneys in need ? more than 9,000 were awarded in 2009 alone. As many of us know attorneys who might like to avail themselves of this PLI service, we thought that this would be a good time to remind you of its existence. Our scholarship application is located under the Pro Bono/Scholarship tab of PLI’s website at www.pli.edu.

Of course, PLI continues to offer scholarships to all legal professionals who seek to learn skills that will assist them in pro bono activities and are eligible for scholarship assistance. In addition, we continue to offer Pro Bono Privileged Memberships to public interest and legal aid organizations that seek to further the training and ability of their members.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can help.

The PLI scholarship application costs $25 to submit, and obviously with more than 9,000 awarded scholarships in 2009 PLI is giving a lot away to those who need assistance, which definitely fits within the PLI non-profit model. Full and partial scholarships are available to judges, judicial law clerks, law professors, law students, attorneys 65 or older, law librarians, attorneys who work for nonprofit organizations, legal services organizations or government agencies, and unemployed attorneys.

PLI is also hosting Winning Strategies for Managing Your Career 2010, which will be available live in New York City on March 24, 2010, live in San Francisco on April 6, 2010 and also available via live Webcast on March 24, 2010. The cost, whether you attend live or via live Webcast, is just $25, and it comes with 3.5 credits of CLE! The marketing copy for this program explains, in part:

Today’s legal landscape has changed the ways in which many of us are planning and structuring our legal careers. Are you considering a change in practice areas? Perhaps you’re thinking of starting your own firm or business. Maybe you’re searching for a new job either inside or outside the legal field.

You really don’t have to go through this rough time on your own.  I personally find PLI programs quite helpful, the CLE credits are great, and I always learn at least something I can use.  So if you know someone who is out of work please pass this along, or if you are struggling yourself reach out to PLI and let them help.

The Author

Gene Quinn

Gene Quinn is a Patent Attorney and Editor and President & CEO ofIPWatchdog, Inc.. Gene founded IPWatchdog.com in 1999. Gene is also a principal lecturer in the PLI Patent Bar Review Course and Of Counsel to the law firm of Berenato & White, LLC. Gene’s specialty is in the area of strategic patent consulting, patent application drafting and patent prosecution. He consults with attorneys facing peculiar procedural issues at the Patent Office, advises investors and executives on patent law changes and pending litigation matters, and works with start-up businesses throughout the United States and around the world, primarily dealing with software and computer related innovations. is admitted to practice law in New Hampshire, is a Registered Patent Attorney and is also admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. CLICK HERE to send Gene a message.

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