Backpack to Briefcase: The New Lawyer 2017

MCLE Credits: 6.0
Ethics Credits Included: 0.0

MCLE Credit: 6.0 (Ethics: 0.0), PLUS registrants will receive a coupon for a $25 live-on-site seminar,
providing additional MCLE credit, including ethics.

Live-Interactive Credit: The online seminar does not qualify for live-interactive credit.
The live seminar add-on provides the option for up to 7.0 hours of live-interactive credit.
Price: $95


Fill your briefcase with the wisdom and experience of scores of Virginia legal experts for just $95:

  • A 6-credit online seminar designed exclusively for new lawyers for just $95
  • Registrants will be given the opportunity to attend one of Virginia CLE®’s cornerstone live-on-site annual seminars for an additional $25
A deeply discounted educational opportunity available only to lawyers admitted to the Virginia Bar in 2016 and 2017, not previously licensed elsewhere.

1. A 6-credit online seminar designed exclusively for new lawyers at a discounted price of $95:
  • Forming and Maintaining an Effective Attorney-Client Team
  • Writing Well
  • Technology for New Lawyers
  • Tips from the Bench
  • Networking and Client Development (no MCLE credit)
2. BONUS! Registrants will receive a coupon to attend one of Virginia CLE®'s cornerstone live-on-site annual seminars for just $25:
  • Annual Criminal Law (February 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.5, Ethics: 1.5)
  • Annual Employment Law Update (May 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0 or 7.0, Optional Ethics: 1.0)
  • Annual Real Estate (May 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Annual Military Law Seminar (May 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.5, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Annual Recent Developments in the Law (June 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Defense of Serious Traffic Cases in Virginia (October 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Annual Trusts and Estates (October 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Annual Family Law (October 2017) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Trying Cases in the Western District of Virginia (December 2017) (MCLE Credit: 4.0)
  • DUI Defense in Virginia (October 2018) (MCLE Credit: 6.0, Ethics: 1.0)
  • Trying Cases in the Eastern District of Virginia (December 2018) (MCLE Credit: 4.0)
  • additional seminars may be added

Your coupon will be included in your receipt for the Backpack to Briefcase online seminar. Please note that not all annual seminars will be available at the time of purchase. You may hold onto your coupon as long as necessary to take advantage of the seminar of the most interest to you. Please choose registration option "Regular without printed materials."

Who is Virginia CLE® and why is this program so affordable?

Established in 1960, Virginia CLE® is a non-profit educational division of the Virginia Law Foundation. As the only full-service Continuing Legal Education provider dedicated to Virginia’s legal community, we are uniquely able to help support your professional growth and to help make your legal career a successful one.

Backpack to Briefcase: The New Lawyer is Virginia CLE®’s investment in your training as a new attorney—to help you practice proficiently, competently, professionally, and ethically throughout your career.

Because we understand the need for new lawyers to have access to learning at low prices, we also offer extensive discounting for your first three years of Virginia practice. For information on these discounts and for a wealth of information of special interest for new lawyers, visit our New Virginia Lawyers webpage.




Forming and Maintaining an Effective Attorney-Client Team (3.0 hours)
Frank W. Morrison, Lisa L. Schenkel, Dillina Wimer Stickley, P. Marshall Yoder

The initial client interview is crucial in the development of good attorney-client working relationships. Through demonstration, new lawyers learn how to conduct effective initial client interviews; communication skills and techniques necessary to have effective attorney-client relationships throughout the representation; the ability to assess the client’s communication strengths and weaknesses; and how to set up a communication process that is tailored to each individual client, which will lead to more effective communications.

Writing Well (1.0 hour)
Thomas E. Spahn

This presentation provides practical guidance to lawyers trying to improve their legal writing. Mr. Spahn covers words (including words to use and to avoid, as well as specific rules for verbs and nouns); sentences (using tricks to improve sentence structure); and paragraphs (emphasizing opening sentences).

Technology for New Lawyers (1.0 hour)
Sharon D. Nelson, John W. Simek

This presentation discusses what new lawyers need to know regarding using technology in their legal practice.  It also discusses social media and its relevancy in litigation, and some of the contemporary challenges and possible pitfalls associated with the use of technology and social media.

Tips from the Bench (1.0 hour)
Justice Jane Roush, Judge Thomas Horne, Judge Robert Pustilnik, Moderator: Paul Terpak

A panel of judges offer their most practical advice about the “do’s and don’ts” in the courtroom. The judges share candid thoughts and provide those “unwritten rules” that every young lawyer should follow in order to present his or her case in the best possible light.

Networking and Client Development (1.0 hour, no MCLE credit)
Lucia Anna “Pia” Trigiani, Hugh M. Fain III

This block discusses the critical relationships between attorneys and clients. The speakers discuss how to expand a practice, how to generate new clients, and how to keep the clients that you have. They offer several key elements, such as: developing an expertise; developing sound networking strategies; investing in bar activities; giving practical advice; and taking the time to truly understand your client’s needs.


Hon. Jane M. Roush, Virginia Supreme Court / Richmond
Hon. Thomas Horne, Loudoun Circuit Court / Leesburg
Hon. Robert A. Pustilnik, Richmond General District Court / Richmond
Hugh M. Fain III, Spotts Fain / Richmond
Frank West Morrison, Phillips, Morrison, Johnson & Ferrell / Lynchburg
Sharon D. Nelson, President, Sensei Enterprises, Inc. / Fairfax
Lisa L. Schenkel, Schenkel & Donaldson, P.C. / Lynchburg
John W. Simek, Vice-President, Sensei Enterprises, Inc. / Fairfax
Thomas E. Spahn, McGuireWoods / McLean
Dillina Wimer Stickley, Hoover Penrod, PLC / Harrisonburg
Paul Terpak, Blankingship & Keith / Fairfax
Lucia Anna (Pia) Trigiani, Mercer Trigiani / Alexandria
P. Marshall Yoder, Wharton Aldhizer & Weaver, PLC / Harrisonburg

Locations, Dates and Fees

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Our Address

  • 105 Whitewood Road
    Charlottesville, VA 22901


  • Virginia CLE® is the non-profit educational division of the Virginia Law Foundation.

© 2017 Virginia Law Foundation