Mandatory Utah Mentor Program Pairs New and Experienced Lawyers

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New lawyers in Utah are paired with experienced mentors under a new mandatory program that is the second of its kind in the nation.

So far 350 mentors have been approved, and another 150 are needed, the Salt Lake Tribune reports. Mentors get 12 hours of continuing legal education credit for participating. They must have at least seven years of experience, a clean disciplinary record and approval from the Utah Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on Professionalism.

The story profiles new lawyer Darren Levitt and his mentor, criminal defense lawyer Susanne Gustin. Levitt said he contacts Gustin about twice a day to get his questions answered about things such as how to handle an upset client or what to charge for legal services.

“In school, you learn how to spot legal issues,” Levitt told the newspaper. “What you don’t learn is the day-to-day procedural things that occur in a law practice, like communicating with the court and opposing parties, what needs to be filed and some of the local rules.”

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