The well-being of attorneys is critical to the effective practice of law, protection of the public trust, and the vibrancy of the culture of our profession – all of which make it of paramount importance to the New York State Bar Association.

The personal and professional rewards gleaned from the legal profession are many but may be achieved at a great cost. Recent data and reports have shown rates of mental illness, fatigue, physical health problems, and substance abuse far exceed the national averages for other professions. The evidence is deeply troubling and necessarily out of alignment with a profession charged with the public trust. In our profession, where statistically significant portions of our membership are not personally and collectively well, the public trust is at risk.

To oversee issues related to the well-being of our legal community and to develop practical, evidence-based resources to educate, support and empower all members of the legal community; law student through retiree. The Task Force will examine factors which negatively impact the health and well-being of the legal community, including those discussed in the 2017 ABA’s Report of the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being, and develop a report detailing attainable, measurable recommendations for mitigation efforts which can be implemented across New York’s legal landscape.

In order to accomplish its mission, the Task Force will examine nine critical areas of the legal landscape which empirical data have data identified as effecting the well-being of attorneys. Each area will be examined by a working group for the purpose of contributing to the comprehensive Task Force Report. The groups will independently develop the recommendations in their respective area and then the entire Task Force will work together to synthesize information from each working group into the final Report.

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