June 2010

It’s been a while since our last Courtship Connection report. We still have many, many single types in our database, though. We are thinking about having a singles mixer at a bar in New York in July. Is this a brilliant idea or a terrible idea? Please email Kash with your thoughts on this. The key question: Would you come to see the awkwardness if you have to buy your own drinks?

Back to our more exclusive pairings: We set up one Biglaw couple and one Midlaw-Biggov pair. Though Midlaw and Biggov both like tonic as their mixer, they did not mix well. They met at Ginger Man in midtown Manhattan on a Wednesday night. They both live in New Jersey and I hoped this might make going home together easier. Alas, no. She reported:

As promised, he had a copy of The Economist peeking outside of his messenger bag/briefcase. Although the bar was crowded, we were able to find a table in the back so we could sit down and chat without yelling over the dull roar at the bar. Turns out he went to law school with one of my co-workers and we both live in the same town. It was fun getting to know someone new over a beer and chatting about how our jobs are different (I work for a big firm and he works for the government) and favorite restaurants. There weren’t any awkward breaks in conversation and all in all, a fine blind date. But no real connection to speak of so at the end of the night, we were fine with going our own way.

The other couple had a more interesting start to their blind date relationship. I had to cancel their first date at the last minute when our Biglaw woman came down with a serious fever that sent her to the hospital. Did things heat up when the two did manage to meet up?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “ATL Courtship Connection: Should we have a singles mixer?”

For this caption contest, we gave you empty chairs…

And you gave us funny captions.

Over 2600 votes are in. The winning caption is…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Caption Contest: Firm Chairs Winner”

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

The Washington Post reports:

Three years into his own scheme of dipping into clients’ funds, Maryland malpractice lawyer Bradley Schwartz received an e-mail from a man claiming to represent a manufacturing company in Singapore, offering him legal work…

What happened next, according to Montgomery County prosecutors, is that the scammer got scammed.

Schwartz pleaded guilty and now awaits sentencing. Oh, it is sweet when a thief gets his just reward…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Lawyer of the Day: Lawyer-Scammer Gets Scammed — and Has His Scam Unravel”

Is this a “terrible job” or “the inevitable future of the legal economy”? Note: those two answers aren’t mutually exclusive.

The University of Michigan Law Schoolthe 9th-best law school in America — is now posting job opportunities from India.

Has it really gotten bad enough that graduates from a top law school should consider international LPO opportunities? Yes, yes it has….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “We Knew This Was Going to Happen: Michigan Encourages Law Grads to go to India”

* Financial reform has made it out of conference. Nobody knows if it’s going to work, but it looks like it’s going to be law. [Washington Post]

* Rate the Kagan. Elena Kagan receives the ABA’s highest rating. [ABA]

* Rule 10-b of the Securities Exchange Act gets significantly scaled back. [SCOTUSblog]

* The eminent domain of Columbia University. [WSJ Law Blog]

* Judge Martin Feldman won’t stay the effects of his “drill, baby, drill” decision. [New York Times]

* Aptly named alleged drug lord, Christopher Coke, will be arraigned today. [The Gleaner]

In April and May of this year, the Altman Weil consulting firm surveyed the leaders of 787 law firms with 50 or more lawyers about the state of the legal industry. After receiving responses from 218 of them (a 28% response rate), Altman Weil crunched the data and compiled it in a big law firm survey, which it published earlier this week.

The survey came out a few days ago and has been covered extensively in various legal news outlets. But we weren’t in any great rush to write about it, since it doesn’t contain much to get excited about: many of the findings are (1) gloomy and (2) unsurprising.

To turn the Nixon Peabody theme song on its head, these days it seems that “everyone’s a loser” in the world of Biglaw….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Law Firm Survey Confirms All the Depressing Stuff You Already Knew About the Business of Biglaw”

You know the drill when it comes to nonprofit fundraisers: hour-long open bar, followed by an excruciatingly long sit-down dinner. Like hamsters, you are rewarded for sitting through each speech with another course served. Once you’ve finished dessert, you hope for a video or slideshow, so the lights are dimmed and you can slip out unobserved.

Some fundraisers are more fun than others, of course — especially if there’s a photo booth with viking hats, or dueling lawyer rock bands (as there will be at the Black Cat in D.C. tonight). But generally these events are rather staid affairs.

LA-based legal services organization Bet Tzedek wanted to shake that formula up. Thirteen years ago, it launched The Justice Ball. Its founders were “sick of black tie and rubber chicken,” says the organization’s president/CEO Mitchell Kamin, and hoped to attract the young professional set instead of just geriatric philanthropists.

Over 2,500 people are expected to attend this year’s ball on Saturday night, featuring music by Dave Navarro and DJ Skribble, a Guitar Hero battle, legal tattoos, and a J-Date sponsored speed dating session. Since I’m in L.A. after attending Loyola’s Journalist Law School (and a historic taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live), I’ll be in attendance Saturday night too, thanks to comp tickets from Bet Tzedek. I look forward to spotting many summer associates there. Sidley, Skadden, Latham & Watkins, and O’Melveny & Myers are among the many firms that put the Justice Ball on their summer associate events calendars.

I interviewed Kamin about what to expect Saturday, whether tickets are still available (they are), and how he has transformed the LA County legal services firm into an award-winning national network.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “A Rocking Fundraiser in L.A.: The Justice Ball”

* Is “grade reform” leading to “excessive egalitarianism” at American law schools? [Minding the Campus]

* Biglaw website awards. [The Snark]

* It’s pretty awesome to get paid for nailing things. [Legal Blog Watch]

* Well, we could fix this with a large piece of federal legislation, or we could use something like a binder or a file cabinet. [BL1Y]

* Viacom can learn something now that Google has smacked them around. [Breaking Media]

* When more isn’t always better. [What About Clients?]

* If you’re looking for something fun to do in D.C. tonight, go to the Black Cat for Banding Together 2010: Battle of the Law Firm Bands. It’s a fun evening — and it’s for a good cause. [Gifts for the Homeless]

It’s like Titanic, but with fewer survivors.

– Tagline for Lathamed: The Movie

It’s pretty tough being a first-year associate these days. You’re working hard, you’re terrified of getting Lathamed, and you can’t even complain, because everybody thinks you should be grateful to have a job.

But at least you don’t have to deal with bright and unbroken summer associates, rolling through your office with smoke billowing up their asses at every point. The recession has taken its toll on summer associate programs too.

At Sheppard Mullin, however, summer associates are actually making more money (per paycheck) than first-year associates. In fact, the summers are even making more than some second-year associates.

How did this happen?

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