Commencing July 1, 2016, the Animal Law Committee of the Florida Bar will become The Florida Bar’s newest Section. The Section aims to promote the growth, practice, and appreciation of animal law, a growing legal specialty that cuts across many other areas of the law. Of course animal law touches on domestic animals such as pet dogs and cats, but also includes equine law, agricultural law such as issues regarding livestock and farm animals, and many more.
The Animal Law Committee was first formed in 2004 but with its growth into a section, the membership will be able to weigh in on state legislation and regulation touching on housing and public access rights, puppy mill regulation, and negligence standards for professionals, among many others. Seventeen other states have animal law sections and many more have animal law committees. More than 1000 Bar members signed a petition indicating their interest in joining the new Section. However, animal law is often not lucrative enough for attorneys to focus exclusively on it. On the other hand, animal law is a rapidly burgeoning area and more attorneys may soon be able to do so. To join the new Animal Law Section of the Florida Bar, select the option on the section preference form circulated with the dues statement. Nonlawyers can contact Committee Chair Gil Panzer for more information about joining the section. Mr. Panzer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.