August 2014

Memorial Day weekend is almost here, and we all know what that means: the arrival of summer. And we all know what summer means: people taking their clothes off, at the beach or pool.

People taking their clothes off got us thinking about one of our favorite personalities here at Above the Law: Deidre Dare, the sexy ex-associate in the Moscow office of Allen & Overy, who started writing about erotic exploits on the internet. Dare presented her work as fiction, but she did hint that it was in part autobiographical (a point she underscored by posing online in her undies).

Alas, the powers-that-be at A&O were not amused by Dare’s literary endeavors. After seeing that the project finance lawyer’s writing talents extended to sex scenes as well as sale-leasebacks, they terminated her employment. Dare then turned around and sued the firm, seeking £3.5 million in damages.

And now Deidre Dare is once again in the news….

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* Wait, fat people are a protected class in Michigan? I am so going to move to Michigan, where nothing bad can ever legally happen to me again. [WSJ Law Blog]

* A provocative new article about judicial review, written by Professor Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz and published in the latest issue of the Stanford Law Review, is getting lots of love from the legal blogosphere. [Legal Theory Blog and Volokh Conspiracy; article at SSRN]

* Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest public servant of them all? [Main Justice]

* Is there any way to make CLE something that isn’t totally boring and useless? [TechnoLawyer]

* This article made me think: if there was a “female Viagra” pill that increased a woman’s sexual desire, arousal, and satisfaction, and you slipped such a pill into a woman’s drink, and then you had mind-blowing awesome sex with her … would that be consensual awesome sex, or date rape? I mean, it’s clearly battery at the very least, right? [True/Slant]

* Here’s an article on patent law that you don’t need a hard science degree in order to read. [Genomics Law Report]

* Oh, it’s trademark week at Blawg Review. This year the INTA Annual Meeting is in Boston, a city whose depressing fog over an unimpressive skyline should be its trademarked image. [The Trademark Blog via Blawg Review]

I’d rather not get into it. You’d fall off your chair.

– Leading First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams, declining to discuss with the New York Times what he and Cahill Gordon are charging the ratings agency S.& P.

So far, it looks like Jones Day has weathered the recession quite well. At the very least, we know Jones Day is proud of itself and feels like it will have a recruiting advantage. It managed to avoid the crazy layoffs and deferrals that have plagued Biglaw, and to top it all off, the firm secured a major Supreme Court victory today.

On Friday, Jones Day hiring partner Gregory Shumaker sat down with The Careerist (gavel bang: ABA Journal) to give people the 4-1-1 on how to snag a job at one of Biglaw’s most secretive firms. Apparently, the people at Jones Day don’t like new lawyers who think too highly of themselves:

What turns you off about a candidate during an interview?

If I sense entitlement; if they think they’re better than their colleagues or if they are too focused on themselves.

Right, because the last thing you want is self-confident people who think they are better than their classmates and entitled to decent treatment and the prevailing market wage in exchange for their hard work and commitment.

But it’s an employer’s market, and Jones Day can afford to be choosy. Therefore, it’s not just low self-esteem that helps you get a job at Jones Day; you also have to buy into the firm’s culture of secrecy

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Here’s a bit of happy news to start the new week off on the right foot. The well-regarded, Atlanta-based firm of Morris Manning, which canceled its summer program in 2009, due to the economy, has reversed course for 2010.

From the firm’s press release:

Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP is pleased to announced that it is hosting a ten week program for its incoming summer associate class.

“Like many major law firms, MMM elected not to host a summer program in 2009,” said Vanessa Goggans, the firm’s HR Partner. “Since then we have experienced significant economic improvement and the firm is excited and encouraged that we have business demands to support nine summer law students.”

Of the nine summer associates, three are from Emory, five are from the University of Georgia, and one is from the University of Florida. Almost all, seven out of nine, are 2Ls; one is a 1L, and one appears to be a post-3L pre-bar. Check out the full list here (PDF).

And what is the broader significance of the Morris Manning move?

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Above the Law has regularly blogged about why the National Football League should not be treated as a single entity under Section 1 of the Sherman Act. See here, here, and here.

Today the Supreme Court agreed, ruling 9-0 to overturn the Seventh Circuit’s ruling in American Needle v. Nat’l Football League , in which the Seventh Circuit had held the NFL clubs sometimes exempt from Section 1 review.

In a concise, 23-page opinion (PDF), the Supreme Court explained that the NFL is not a single entity because “the NFL teams do not possess either the unitary decisionmaking quality or the single aggregation of economic power characteristic of independent action.”

This case will now be remanded to the Northern District of Illinois for further discovery and then review of its antitrust merits under the Rule of Reason. (More detailed discussions of the issues on remand are available here and here).

Additional analysis and background, after the jump.

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A month ago, I was surprised by Great Britain’s new Drinking Ban Order. The restriction feels like a little too much government control of our personal lives. But I guess the United States has similar authority to impose draconian restrictions on legal activity — at least if you are a celebrity with a known history of making terrible movies drunk driving.

A Los Angeles judge put some alcohol related conditions on Lindsay Lohan’s bail application stemming from a 2007 drunk driving charge. Apparently, Lohan now needs to be collared like a dog…

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Lawyers are obsessed with rankings. When the new U.S. News law school rankings come out each year, our readers swarm around them like sharks who smell blood in the water.

And with good reason. Where you went to school matters in this profession. In our series of open threads about the rankings, Elie commented in the posts on the third tier and fourth tier schools that only a lucky few of their graduates would be able to score jobs that pay the big bucks.

So how good exactly do you have to be to appeal to employers?

Shell Oil is currently advertising for an in-house position. Shell is willing to accept applications for graduates from all four tiers — unlike U.S. News, Shell recognizes and defines the “Tier II” schools (#51-#100) — but the lower down your school is on the U.S. News rankings, the closer to the top of your class you have to be.

So exactly what rank do you have to be to qualify for a BigOil law job?

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Last week, we told you about a Cornell contracts exam gone bad.

It’s just one exam, but you know that Cornell law students can be somewhat skittish. The school is ranked #13 by U.S. News, and so their spot in the top-14 is always under attack.

After our story about the contracts exam, one Cornell law student did some research about the school and its competitors. He put together a pretty interesting rankings of law schools — based entirely on Above the Law coverage.

Below, we reprint his (admittedly nutty) message to the Cornell listserv in full. If members from other schools want to do something similar, feel free to check out our archives for ammunition against your competitors.

For now, enjoy this humorous take on law school rankings:

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I’ve invested six prime time years of my life into Lost, and I can’t recall a single legal angle. None of the characters were lawyers — no matter which reality you look at. More than that, I can’t even recall a single legal concept the show explored.

Last night’s series finale was no different.

But, everybody, everywhere is talking about it. So, we wanted to serve our community water cooler function and let you lawyer Lost fans discuss the series. Already, the dominant question from the finale is: “What the f*** just happened?” I’m sure you guys have some ideas…

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