Food, language and music aren’t the only unique qualities of this area. The French influence in this part of the country provides us with our own unique body of civil law, immortalized in the words of Stanley Kowalski in “A Streetcar Named Desire” as the Napoleonic code. Louisiana is the only state in the union to have a civil code of laws with an origin dating back to the French Civil Code of the Napoleonic era.
The large professional service industry in Lafayette is heavily populated with attorneys and legal professionals who practice all aspects of law, including many professionals in the oil and gas industry who hold law degrees but do not practice traditionally. According to the enrollment figures of the Lafayette Parish Bar Association, Lafayette has over 1,100 attorneys in all aspects of practice in this area.
The Lafayette Bar Association (LBA) was officially created in 1972 as a professional association for the legal community. The association is dedicated to providing high-quality programs and acts as an important resource to its more than 900 members. The association is funded through membership dues and professional services, such as CLEs and publications.
The association is a professional membership organization whose mission is to serve the profession, its members and the community by promoting justice, professional excellence, respect for the rule of law and fellowship amongst attorneys and the court.
The Lafayette Young Lawyers Association (LYLA), a section of the LBA, is composed of attorney members who are either under 40 or who have been practicing law for five years or fewer.
As the Chamber of Commerce represents the business community, the Bar Association is the voice for the legal community. It acts as a one-stop shop for attorney networking, CLE and professionalism.
The association is dedicated to providing high-quality programs and acts as an important resource to its nearly 850 members. One of its premier events is the Red Mass held each September to announce the opening of court. Prayers for the legal community, for members who have passed on and for justice in general are said. The term “Red Mass” goes back to the 13th century custom of Mass invoking the Holy Spirit at the beginning of the judicial year. The color red comes from the vestments worn by priests and scarlet robes of the Lord High Justices and university professors.
Contact the Lafayette Parish Bar Association at 337.237.4700 or www.lafayettebar.org for more information.