October 2014

* No charges will be filed against certain and current and former AIG executives. [Wall Street Journal]

* Elena Kagan’s wardrobe isn’t a topic just for legal tabloids anymore. [Washington Post]

* The New York Attorney General, Andrew Cuomo, is officially running for Governor. [New York Daily News]

* There’s a new nominee for deputy U.S. Attorney General. [BLT: The Blog of the Legal Times]

* Firms are starting to hire associate laterals again, but they’re pushing back on recruiting fees. [American Lawyer]

* Have you seen this Sarah Ferguson bribery thing? I’ll never understand why Britain hangs onto this vestigial monarchy. [New York Post]

Spending $50,000 for an education you can’t use is really frustrating.

Jade Stier, a teacher who went to nursing school after spending three years trying to find a job teaching at an elementary school.

Texas exists so I don’t have to make up headlines like the one above. Khou.com reports:

Simkins Residence Hall is the last all-male dormitory at the University of Texas. Tucked into a quiet corner of campus along Waller Creek, it was the first men’s dorm with air conditioning.

It is notable for another reason as well: Simkins is named for a UT law professor who was a leader of the Ku Klux Klan.

Yeah, no average Klan sympathizer can get his name on a dorm in Texas. You’ve got to be a Klan leader for that kind of recognition.

Administration officials claim they only recently became aware of the Simkins’s supremacist background. That’s probably true. But something tells me that 55 years ago, when the dorm opened, somebody at UT damn well knew that this law prof was a Klansman…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “University of Texas Considers Renaming a Dorm Honoring a Klansman Law Professor”


* Law school exam hypothetical: Should a church lose its tax-exempt status if it uses its Twitter account to support a political candidate? [Going Concern]

* What is it about New York Law School grads and cupcake-making? Well before Lev Ekster, there was Mia Bauer, founder of the celebrated Crumbs bake shop. [Forbes]

* Is the Obama Administration trying to curry favor with Justice Kennedy? Guess who’s coming (or came to) the state dinner. [Gawker]

* Next Management and Ford Models duke it out — not on the runway, but in court. [Fashionista]

* Who says law reviews are good for nothing? For one former employee of American University, they were good for $400,000. [WTOP]

* Chief Judge Michael Mills, of the Northern District of Mississippi, knows how to administer stinging benchslaps. [NMissCommentor]

* Can Subway trademark the term “footlong”? In the sandwich context, maybe; in the sexual context, not so much. [Blogonaut]

The Tenth Justice Fantasy SCOTUS League.jpgWith Kagan’s nomination set, and all oral arguments for the October 2009 Term completed, we are still waiting for some major decisions — specifically, McDonald v. Chicago, Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, Free Enterprise v. PCAOB, Bilski v. Kappos, and Doe v. Reed. In this post, we will offer predictions for these huge cases. Additionally, our statistics might also give us an insight into what is causing the delay within the SCOTUS on handing down these opinions.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “FantasySCOTUS: What’s Taking Them So Long? Predictions for McDonald, CLS, PCAOB, Doe, and Bilksi”

Every now and then, we like to offer our readers some career alternatives — things you can do with your law degree and legal training that don’t involve, say, working in a large law firm or as a contract lawyer. We’ve profiled a wide range of individuals, from lawyers who have left the law for everything from football coaching to CEO-ing to therapy (giving, not receiving).

A number of past profiles have involved attorneys turned entrepreneurs. We’ve looked at lawyers who have started restaurants and gone into college admissions consulting. We’ve profiled a lawyer who makes hot tamales, and a lawyer who is a hot tamale.

Today we continue down the path of attorneys who have gone from representing companies to launching them. Our latest interviewee has started a company, Urban Interns, that might be of interest to any ATL readers who are looking to hire interns — or any ATL readers who are looking for internships, which can provide valuable experience and/or a paycheck (of great value during these times of still-high unemployment).

Meet Cari Sommer, a Biglaw alum who last year launched Urban Interns….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Career Alternatives: Internship Market Maker”

Ed. note: Have a question for next week? Send it in to advice@abovethelaw.com.

Hey Above the Law,

I am a litigation associate at a well-respected established Denver firm. My computer is 6 years old. Yes, six, as in SIX M*****F*****G YEARS OLD.

It is safe to guess that I spend at least 10% of my time waiting for the computer to do something stupid, like print or open a word document. All of this time, of course, is billed to the client. A win-win for the firm, no? Not only do we not buy a computer, but we get higher bills because it takes longer to do a mundane task! Yippee!

My question, for you to handle of course: is it ethical to bill a client for time spent waiting for a six (yes six) year old computer to do some stupid little task? Should I be instructing partners to cut my time by at least (an additional) 10-20% based on the computer?

— Reboot

Dear Reboot,

As I type this on my five-year-old piece of garbage IBM Thinkpad that whirs as if it’s about to take flight at any moment, I feel your pain. It took me literally three hours to upload pictures to Facebook the other day, and the entire time my computer panted like a fat person on an elliptical. Will I get a new computer any time soon? You bet your sweet bippy I won’t…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Pls Hndle Thx: Ok Computer”

Google has stepped in the privacy sh*t again. The Google cars collecting data for Google Maps’s nifty Street View service have also been inadvertently collecting information off of people’s unsecured wireless networks. If someone’s Wi-Fi account lacked a password and encryption, the cars had the ability to snatch some data.

Google claims the Wi-Fi sniffing was inadvertent, that this was a programming error, and that it didn’t realize it was stockpiling the personal info. It was discovered by German investigators and now has EU regulators up in arms, says Ashby Jones at the WSJ Law Blog. It’s unclear how much data exactly was sniffed during brief drive-bys of houses. It’s also unclear why anyone would set up a Wi-Fi account without password protection these days. But there’s no law banning stupid/lazy people from filing invasion of privacy lawsuits.

Two West Coast plaintiffs filed a class action suit in Oregon on Monday, asking Google to “pay up to $10,000 for each time it snatched data from unprotected hotspots.” It includes a TRO preventing Google from deleting the data, which the company otherwise had planned to do. (Irony alert.)

The news led ABC 7 in Washington, D.C. to go around and ask people on the street how they felt about Google snooping on their Wi-Fi accounts. One person they asked was a federal judge; if Google comes around his house, it better be packing…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Google’s Privacy-Invading Street View Cars Should Avoid Judge Larry Burns’s House”

I don’t even know what it is, to tell you the truth. I’ve heard it talked about. My wife calls me Mr. Clueless.

Justice Antonin Scalia, speaking about Twitter, in response to a question about whether he’s ever considering “tweeting or twitting.”

If your firm offered you a “voluntary” deferral option last year, they sure made a lot of promises. Chiefest among them was the understanding that the people who left voluntarily for a year would be able to come back to the firm and resume their Biglaw careers after the deferral.

Well, that bond is about to mature. We’ve already reported on Skadden trying to reabsorb the people who were out on Sidebar Plus. Now we’re fielding reports about Dewey & LeBoeuf trying to find space for all the people who took the DL Pursuits deferral last May. A tipster reports:

The DL Pursuits program will ends on June 1. Just this week, some number of “Pursuers” are being offered another deferral year or four months’ severance. But they are not welcome back to the firm at this time.

Dewey confirmed to Above the Law that some practice groups are slower than others and not everybody has a job waiting for them at this time. But they’re not revoking any offers…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Dewey & LeBoeuf Has a Backlog of Associates Returning from the Deferral Year”

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