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Although Nebraska is in the top ten of least-populated states, it is home to a much higher lawyer-to-resident ratio. The number of attorneys within Nebraska for every 10,000 residents is just under twenty-seven, which places Nebraska towards the middle of all of the states in terms of the number of lawyers living in within the state. Although 9,200 lawyers can practice law in Nebraska, only about 6,000 lawyers actually live in the state, Prior to practicing law in Nebraska, lawyers must join the Nebraska State Bar Association. Since its members work in many different legal fields and in a variety of locations throughout the state, the Nebraska State Bar Association strives to meet the diverse needs of the state’s legal community by offering several benefits, including continuing legal education teleseminars. The Nebraska State Bar Association also focuses on helping the general public through various means, such as providing free legal assistance to low-income residents and aiding law school graduates in transitioning from the classroom to the courtroom.
In addition to a mandatory state wide bar association, Nebraska is home to several voluntary bar associations that also serve attorneys located across the state. However, instead of providing support to all of Nebraska’s lawyers, these additional statewide bar associations predominantly concern themselves with only a particular section of Nebraska’s legal community. A number of these voluntary bar associations focus on supporting lawyers that practice in one specific legal area. These associations include the Nebraska Association of Trial Attorneys and the Nebraska Criminal Defense Attorneys Association. By focusing exclusively on one legal area, these Nebraska practice-specific bar associations are able to tailor the membership perks they offer to best serve their members. For example, the associations may offer online document banks, educational programs, and other numerous online tools.
A number of statewide bar associations in Nebraska concentrate on benefiting lawyers of a specific gender or ethnic minority. These associations include the Midlands Bar Association and the Nebraska Women’s Bar Association. The minority bar associations of Nebraska work to provide assistance to their members by hosting networking events and informational meetings. In order to aid the Nebraska residents, these associations often undertake fundraising projects or spearhead civil rights activities.
In addition to the statewide associations, Nebraska sustains a number of regional associations such as the Omaha Bar Association. Nebraska’s regional bar associations are committed to helping to all people involved in the local legal community through several different ways, including assisting local attorneys in procuring new clients through referral services and encouraging collegiality among its members by hosting social events at which members can network with one another. Bar associations covering specified geographic regions in Nebraska are also concerned with helping local residents and supporting local education.