Volume 2 No. 50 | Dec. 14, 2022


No published opinions this week.

No published opinions this week.

No published opinions this week.

Dispositions Other than by Published Opinions

The Supreme Court of Oklahoma Court Calendar

The Supreme Court of Oklahoma is in session year round, unless otherwise noted. The Court regularly schedules conferences on Mondays and other days as needed.


Court of Civil Appeals Elects New Leadership

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The Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals has announced the election of its chief judge and vice-chief judge as well as its judicial division assignments for 2023. Judge E. Bay Mitchell Ill has been elected to serve as chief judge. Judge Deborah B. Barnes has been elected to serve as vice-chief judge.

Judge Brian J. Goree has been elected to serve as presiding judge for Division One of the Court of Civil Appeals, Oklahoma City Division. Division One will consist of Presiding Judge Goree, Judge Barbara G. Swinton and Judge Timothy J. Downing.

Judge Jane P. Wiseman has been elected to serve as presiding judge of Division Two of the Court of Civil Appeals, Tulsa Division. Division Two will consist of Judge Wiseman, Vice-Chief Judge Deborah B. Barnes and Judge Stacie L. Hixon.

Judge Thomas E. Prince has been elected to serve as presiding judge of Division Three of the Court of Civil Appeals, Oklahoma City Division. Division Three will consist of Presiding Judge Prince, Chief Judge E. Bay Mitchell III and Judge Robert D. Bell.

Judge Gregory C. Blackwell has been elected to serve as presiding judge for Division Four of the Court of Civil Appeals, Tulsa Division. Division Four will consist of Presiding Judge Blackwell, Judge John F. Fischer and a judge to sit by special designation in the place of District 2, Office 2, which is presently unoccupied.

Bar Center Holiday Hours


The Oklahoma Bar Center will be closed Monday, Dec. 26, and Tuesday, Dec. 27, in observance of the Christmas holiday.

The lessons so clearly illustrated in A Christmas Carol can significantly impact you in a positive way this holiday season. This classic piece of literature teaches two main morals that should be understood and valued by everyone. The first moral of the story is that no matter how harsh or cold-hearted someone might seem on the outside, everyone has burdens they carry with them that affect them deeply. Because we never know what someone may have gone through in the past or is going through currently, it is always important to treat them with love and grace. The second moral is that showing kindness and love to someone, no matter how much you dislike them or how heartless they may seem, has the beautiful ability to change someone’s life. As attorneys, we have the incredible ability to use our words and actions to influence the lives of those around us, and it is up to us to use this ability for good. My wish for each of you this holiday season is that each of us take this time to consider those less fortunate and do what we can for them. 

The United States has long sought better transparency in the ownership of legal entities. Greater ownership transparency was needed to prevent the use of “shell” corporations and limited liability companies from facilitating terrorist funding, money laundering, selling narcotics, sex trafficking and other criminal conduct. The “shell” corporations and LLCs were also used for tax avoidance and kleptocratic corruption. Knowing who owned the legal entities could be critical in foiling their illicit activities. It was ironic that the United States should seek transparency when its own states were the source for many of the illicit “shell” corporations and LLCs. Bad actors could easily form U.S.-based entities because no system existed to record the beneficial ownership of state corporations and LLCs.

That is changing. On Jan. 1, 2021, Congress passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Included within the NDAA was the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA). Through the CTA, Congress directed the United States Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) to establish and maintain a national registry of beneficial owners, managers and company applicants of entities that are deemed to be reporting companies. The CTA was intended to make it more onerous for domestic and foreign individuals to operate shell companies for illicit purposes. The ‎CTA required that implementing regulations be ‎promulgated by the end of 2021. On Dec. 7, 2021, FinCEN issued a notice ‎of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) requesting comment on the proposed regulations, with the comment period ending ‎Feb. 7, 2022.‎

By requiring the reporting of beneficial ownership and management of nearly every legal entity formed or operating in the U.S., the CTA will have an enormous impact on companies and the lawyers who advise them. Lawyers will likely play a critical role in their clients’ reporting, and lawyers assisting in the formation of a corporation or LLC may find their personal information reported to the CTA database. This article discusses key aspects of the CTA and assesses its impact on lawyers who form legal entities.

Know an Oklahoma student who loves to write or draw? The annual OBA Law Day Art and Writing Contest is designed to stimulate discussion and understanding of the law among young Oklahomans. Categories include art and writing for grades pre-K through 12th, with cash prizes up to $500 and plaques for winners, plus participation certificates to honor every student's hard work. This year’s theme is “Cornerstones of Democracy: Civics, Civility and Collaboration.” The contest closes Jan. 13.

The holidays can be a hectic time, and many of our members still need to get their CLE credits before the year's end. Don't stress, OBA CLE has you covered! Just visit ok.webcredenza.com to access all available online OBA CLE programs from the cozy comfort of your home or office. WebCredenza is the OBA's new learning platform that makes on-demand CLE a snap! Simply use the search function at the top of the webpage to discover topics that are most relevant to you. WebCredenza features a user-friendly interface and built-in artificial intelligence to learn your viewing and search habits, meaning you will see topics of most interest to you, the individual user. What could make the holidays easier? 

Take a tour at ok.webcredenza.com today or contact Renee Montgomery for assistance.

Featured CLE

By Jim Calloway, OBA Management Assistance Program Director

Every year, the ABA releases its ABA Legal Technology Survey Report. It is a massive work of five volumes and is quite pricey to purchase. The ABA’s Law Technology Today annually provides summaries taken from the report, including some expert analysis in its TechReports. OBA Practice Management Advisor Julie Bays undertook the topic of "Technology Budget and Planning" for the publication. Year’s end is always a good time to think about budgeting. An ABA membership is not required to read or subscribe to the ABA’s Law Technology Today.

The Oklahoma Bar Journal is a publication of the Oklahoma Bar Association. All rights reserved. Copyright© 2022 Oklahoma Bar Association. Statements or opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Oklahoma Bar Association, its officers, Board of Governors, Board of Editors or staff. Although advertising copy is reviewed, no endorsement of any product or service offered by any advertisement is intended or implied by publication. Advertisers are solely responsible for the content of their ads, and the OBA reserves the right to edit or reject any advertising copy for any reason. Legal articles carried in The Oklahoma Bar Journal are selected by the Board of Editors. Information about submissions can be found at www.okbar.org.