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The Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section, nearly 30,000 members strong, continues to establish itself as the authoritative voice of real estate, trust and estate planning lawyers in the country. The section continues to introduce programs, projects and initiatives to meet the needs of its members. The section’s substantive committees and groups have become revitalized in the past several years. Each group presents programming at our fall and spring continuing legal education (CLE) meetings. Many have regular conference calls to discuss hot topics in their particular area; each has a Web site on which members can post articles and other information relevant to their practice areas. Another important way to keep the section vital, strong and relevant in the future is to provide solid, practical training for young lawyers. To this end, we have begun presenting during our Spring Symposia a Young Lawyers Institute � a full day of CLE programming expressly designed for attorneys who are new to the fields of real estate or trust and estate law. The section has inducted its seventh class of young lawyer fellows � young lawyers who have demonstrated a commitment to the profession and are allowed to join in the substantive work of the section, to develop as future leaders and to bring knowledge about the work of the section to other young lawyers. Our Task Force on Real Property Law School Curricula is finalizing its report evaluating the basic property course as it is currently taught in the nation’s law schools. The Intellectual Property/Patent Task Force continues to work with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to provide an education on various planning techniques. The Property Preservation Task Force has been identifying the character, scope and possible solutions to the loss of tenancy in common property throughout the United States. The section regularly responds to requests by the Treasury Department, the Internal Revenue Service and congressional leaders for comments on real estate, trust and estate planning issues. In addition, the section is actively involved with various projects of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. The section is participating, with the Section of Business Law and other constituencies in the Legal Opinion Risk Seminar Initiative to reconcile the customary real estate legal opinion practice with non-real estate legal opinion practice on a national basis. The section is working to involve in-house counsel in its work. We have created a special committee to focus on issues of particular concern to members of the section who are employees of for-profit and not-for-profit corporations and federal, state and local governmental departments and agencies. The committee will work with other committees of the section to design programs and arrange for articles that are of particular interest to in-house counsel, and to otherwise promote opportunities for participation by in-house counsel in section activities. Kathleen Martin is chair-elect of the Section of Real Property, Probate and Trust Law. She is a partner in the Minneapolis firm Malkerson Gilliland Martin and practices primarily in the area of commercial real estate development. For more information about the section, see www.abanet.org/rppt.

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