MTLA Spring Seminar

Administrative Claims, Judges, Liens,
Ethics, and Client Communications

April 24, 2020

This seminar will be streamed live to
your desktop or mobile device - there will be no extra charge, just register and connection information will be emailed to you.

There will NOT be an in person option!

Hilton Garden Inn
2520 14th Street SW
Great Falls, Montana

Seminar Co-Chairs:  Tommy Murphy and Jacy Suenram, Great Falls


Register Now - pay by credit card
PDF Form - mail in with check


Speaker Bios




Live Streaming ONLY


MTLA and Fisher Video Conferencing will be streaming this seminar for "live" CLE credits.


We will be using a Zoom platform to provide  live streaming of the seminar to your desktop or mobile device.  The platform allows you to interact with the seminar, including asking questions of the presenter. 




FISHER - Video Conferencing | Court Reporting | Video Services | Trial Presentation Consultation


Schedule – 6.5 CLE Credits, including 2 ethics credits


7:30   Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:25   Introduction & Welcome
    Jacy Suenram, Great Falls
8:30   2020 Changes to the Montana Rules of Professional Conduct - Ethics
    Timothy B. Strauch, Missoula
9:30   Client Relations: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly - Ethics
    Michele Levine, Great Falls
10:30   BREAK
10:45   Chief Justice Mike McGrath - COVID-19 Court Update
11:00   Judicial Panel: Discovery and Motion Practice
    Hon. Brian Morris, U.S. District Court of Montana, Great Falls
    Hon. Elizabeth A. Best, Eighth Judicial District, Great Falls
    Hon. John A. Kutzman, Eighth Judicial District, Great Falls
    Moderator: Jacy Suenram, Great Falls
12:15   LUNCH (on your own)
1:30   Subrogation and Lien Resolution
    Jonathan McDonald, Helena
2:30   BREAK
2:45   Administrative Venues and Your Clients
    ● Workers Compensation: Matt Murphy, Great Falls
    ● Medical Legal Panel: Ben Snipes, Great Falls
    ● Human Rights Bureau: Scott Peterson, Helena
    ● Special Education: Andrée Larose, Helena
    ● Wage & Hour Claim: Frederick Sherwood, Helena
    ● Board of Personnel Appeals: Ann MacIntyre, Helena
    Moderator: Tommy Murphy, Great Falls





Hon. Elizabeth A. Best, Eighth Judicial District, was appointed to the bench in March 2016 and won election in November 2016. After earning her law degree from the University of Montana School of Law, Judge Best served in the U.S. Army JAGC. Upon return to Montana, she clerked for U.S. District Judge Paul Hatfield and then entered private practice. Judge Best is a past president of MTLA and was named Trial Lawer of the Year in 2008.
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Hon. John A. Kutzman graduated from the University of Montana School of Law in 1991. His pre-judicial career included a clerkship with Montana Supreme Court Justice Terry Trieweiler and employment with Thueson & Lamb, Dorsey & Whitney, the Agency Legal Services Bureau, and Paoli & Kutzman. His practice emphasized complex civil litigation. Governor Bullock appointed him to the bench in 2015 and voters retained him in 2016 and 2018.
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Andrée Larose is a civil rights attorney with Morrison, Sherwood, Wilson & Deola. Her practice focuses primarily on the educational rights of students with disabilities but includes other disability-related matters such as special needs trusts and discrimination. Prior to joining MSWD in 2008, Andrée was a senior staff attorney at Disability Rights Montana. Ms. Larose earned her law degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1982. She serves on MTLA's Board and Education Committee.
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Michele Reinhart Levine is a 2012 graduate of the Alexander Blewett III School of Law. Ms. Levine served three terms as a Montana State Representative for House District 97, (D-Missoula). During law school, Michele was a member of the ABA Negotiation Team, the Women’s Law Caucus, and the Environmental Law Group. Levine is a shareholder at FairClaim/Linnell, Newhall, Martin & Schulke. Michele’s practice areas include workers’ compensation, personal injury, and pro bono family law.
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Anne MacIntyre is the presiding officer of the the Montana Board of Personnel Appeals. She was appointed to the position by Gov. Brian Schweitzer in 2012 and reappointed by Gov, Steve Bullock in 2016. From 1997 to 2005, she served as the chief of the Hearings Bureau (now Office of Administrative Hearings). She was the administrator of the Montana Human Rights Commission from 1983 to 1997. She earned her law degree from the University of Montana (1980).
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Jonathan McDonald has practiced law in Helena since his admission to the State Bar of Montana in 2006. His firm, McDonald Law Office, PLLC, focuses on personal injury litigation and insurance law. He graduated with honors from the University of Montana School of Law in 2006. He has received MTLA awards including Trial Lawyer of the Year (with Mike George), Outstanding New Lawyer and Appellate Advocacy (with Jim Hunt). Jonathan serves on MTLA's Amicus Committee and Trial Trends Editorial Board.
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Hon. Brian M. Morris was commissioned to the U.S. District Court of Montana in December 2013. Judge Morris graduated with distinction from Stanford Law School in 1992. He clerked for Justice Rehnquist and Judge Noonan Jr. before working in private practice in Bozeman. Judge Morris also served as a legal assistant at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal, as a legal officer at the UN Compensation Commission in Geneva and Solicitor for the MT Department of Justice. Judge Morris served on the Montana Supreme Court from 2005 - 2013.
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Matthew J. Murphy is a partner and shareholder at Murphy Law Firm in Great Falls. Matt focuses his practice primarily on plaintiff injury claims, including workers’ compensation, workplace injuries, wrongful death, trucking & auto accidents, occupational exposures, and employment matters. Matt earned his law degree from the University of Montana and is a recipient of MTLA's Outstanding New Lawyer Award.
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Scott L. Peterson is an attorney in Helena with the firm Morrison, Sherwood, Wilson, & Deola. His practice includes employment law, with a particular emphasis on work before the Human Rights Bureau and Human Rights Commission. In 2017, Scott obtained a nearly $400,000 award from the Human Rights Bureau for a retaliation claim, amongst the largest amounts ever awarded for a Human Rights case in Montana.
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Frederick F. Sherwood is a third generation Montanan who has practiced law since 1977. He was counsel to the Montana Human Rights Commission from 1978 to 1982, and he has been in private practice in Helena ever since. Mr. Sherwood is a partner at Morrison Sherwood, Wilson & Deloa (since 1989). His practice areas include employment law, civil rights, consumer rights, right-to-know and open meetings and personal injury. Rick earned his law degree from UC Berkeley Boalt School of Law.
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Ben A. Snipes is a shareholder with Kovacich Snipes Johnson in Great Falls. His practice exclusively involves plaintiff’s cases, emphasizing toxic tort, workplace and medical malpractice claims. In 2019, Mr. Snipes along with his partner, Mark Kovacich, was named MTLA Trial Lawyer of the Year. Mr. Snipes serves on the board of directors for the Federal Bar Association’s Montana Chapter, the Cascade County Bar Association (President) and the Cascade County Law Clinic (Vice President).
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Timothy B. Strauch practices in Missoula, where he focuses primarily on plaintiff’s commercial and serious personal injury litigation. Mr. Strauch earned his law degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law. He served for three years as Disciplinary Counsel for the State of Montana, and is a co-recipient (with Mick Taleff) of MTLA’s Trial Lawyer of the Year award. Tim has written several articles on ethics and professional responsibility. He currently serves on the State Bar of Montana's Ethics and Judicial Relations Committees.
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