Staci Zaretsky

Staci Zaretsky became an editor for Above the Law in June 2011. Before becoming an editor, she pseudonymously wrote the site's Morning Docket column. Staci graduated from Lehigh University and Western New England University School of Law, where her writing was published in the Western New England Law Review. Before deciding to pursue writing as a full-time career, Staci worked at a small law firm. Her writing has appeared in other legal publications, such as Judgepedia, Lawyerist, and Ms. JD. She has been featured on various television and radio programs, like CNBC's Power Lunch, CBS Radio News, BBC Radio, CLTV Chicago, HuffPost Live, TF1 TV France, Chicago Public Radio, Civil Discourse Now, KGNU Denver, and iHeartMedia Denver.

Posts by Staci Zaretsky

  • police crime tape

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.09.15

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert, most recently of Dickstein Shapiro, finally found a lawyer to represent him in his sex scandal cover-up. His new lawyer may not be “the brightest guy in the world,” but he does do white-collar defense at Sidley Austin, so there you go. [National Law Journal]

    * Oopsie! A Tennessee lawyer is currently being held on $15 million bail because he allegedly solicited an undercover police officer to kill his estranged wife. He even gave the guy a “down payment for the murder.” We wonder how much he thought his spouse was worth dead. [Nashville Sun Times]

    * In times like these, you’re going to need a great network in order to get a job after law school, and some schools are superior to others in that department. Check and see if your alma mater made the grade on this ranking. [Business Insider via]

    * Concordia Law just received the gift that keeps on giving from the ABA — provisional accreditation. The news came just in time for its nine remaining third-year students to graduate and take the bar exam (everyone else transferred out). [Idaho Statesman]

    * Kalief Browder, a man used as an example of our broken justice system, was sent to Riker’s Island when he was 16 years old. He never had a trial, and was never convicted, but still spent three years in jail. He recently committed suicide. RIP. [New York Times]

    18 Comments / / Jun 9, 2015 at 8:55 AM
  • Porn makes Justice Scalia happy?


    Justice Antonin Scalia Is Here To Rain On Your Nazi Parade

    What a colorful commencement speech.

    19 Comments / / Jun 8, 2015 at 1:45 PM
  • Charlie Brown (Photo by Laura Cavanaugh/Getty)

    Cartoons / Comics, Crime

    Good Grief! ‘Charlie Brown’ Calls Judge An A**hole

    He’s accumulated enough criminal charges that it would make sense for him to star in “It’s the Great Rap Sheet, Charlie Brown.”

    36 Comments / / Jun 8, 2015 at 12:03 PM
  • Jennifer Lopez (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.08.15

    * After a particularly bootylicious performance in Morocco that was aired on live TV, singer Jennifer Lopez is facing a lawsuit which alleges that she “disturbed public order and tarnished women’s honor and respect.” Her first affirmative defense: Dat ass tho. [Newsweek]

    * Our congratulations go out to Texas Supreme Court Justice Don R. Willett (@JusticeWillett) for achieving the rare and prestigious honor of being recognized as the “Tweeter Laureate of #Texas.” Way to dole out judicial wit and humor 140 characters at a time, Your Honor. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Howrey gonna pay our creditors if we can’t cash in on unfinished business? A judge recently overturned this failed firm’s bankruptcy court win, noting that since “[t]he law firm defendants performed the work; they deserve the pay.” [Dow Jones Business News]

    * Sorry, job hunters, but despite what you may have heard about the boom years being back, the legal job market is stuck in a “pattern of anemic growth,” and it’s been that way since the Great Recession. Please give your mother our condolences. [Am Law Daily]

    * It’s only a matter of time before the majority of U.S. states legalize marijuana, and Illinois may be the next in line to do so. If you’re thinking about joining the green rush and want to learn more, come to our marijuana law reception next week. [Chicago Tribune]

    15 Comments / / Jun 8, 2015 at 9:01 AM
  • failed

    Bar Exams, Law Schools

    Which Law Schools Allegedly Paid Students Not To Take The Bar Exam?

    Unsurprisingly, this isn’t the first time we’ve heard allegations of a law school doing something like this.

    25 Comments / / Jun 5, 2015 at 11:18 AM
  • ArrowGoingDown

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.05.15

    * Per Dean David Herring, applications have tanked at New Mexico Law (ATL #18) — we’re talking a 30% drop over the past five years. Wait, no, nevermind, the school’s assistant admissions dean says things are great. Oops? [Albuquerque Journal; Albuquerque Business First]

    * Gov. Chris Christie thought he was through with the Bridgegate scandal, but oh, how wrong he was. His former deputy chief of staff’s lawyers want to subpoena Gibson Dunn’s work product, but the firm claims it doesn’t exist. [Talking Points Memo]

    * ¡Ay dios mío! This week, a New York appellate court ruled that Cesar Vargas, an undocumented immigrant, should be eligible to practice law in the state, completely sidestepping federal law and a Justice Department brief to the contrary. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Concordia Law is getting a second chance at obtaining provisional accreditation from the ABA. This would’ve been way more helpful before the majority of its third-year students transferred to an accredited school so they could take the bar exam. [Idaho Statesman]

    * The ex-GC of Zara has filed a discrimination suit against the fashion retailer, claiming that he was fired because he’s Jewish, American, and gay. Apparently senior executives used slurs as ugly as the company’s clothes. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]

    12 Comments / / Jun 5, 2015 at 9:01 AM
  • Alan Dershowitz

    Alan Dershowitz, Old People

    Alan Dershowitz Pees, Slips, Falls, Sues

    This legal luminary blames the accident on a lack of paper towels in the bathroom.

    47 Comments / / Jun 4, 2015 at 2:11 PM
  • Allison Bergman

    Legal Ethics, Sex Scandals

    Ex-Biglaw Partner Gets License Suspended For Sexual Relationship With Client

    A lesson for all lawyers: never let a client check out your “briefs.”

    33 Comments / / Jun 4, 2015 at 11:16 AM
  • Game of Loans

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.04.15

    * If you’re having trouble making payments on your law school debt, don’t fall prey to a loan-relief scam. You may already be six figures in the hole, but you should take this quiz to see if you’re about to lose your shirt — yet again. [U.S. News & World Report]

    * For the second time in two years, the ABA will reconsider whether law students should be able to receive pay for credit-bearing externships. Come on already, give these people a chance to make a buck before they graduate. [National Law Journal]

    * Here’s an important memo for Judge Mark Fuller of the Middle District of Alabama: Just so you know, if you don’t resign on August 1 as promised, the House Judiciary Committee is probably going to bring impeachment proceedings against you. HTH. [Daily Report]

    * It’s not a merger (yet), they’re just “exploring synergies”: Albany Law School and SUNY Albany will affiliate in order to help students from both schools. Check out the memo, complete with an exploding fellowship offer for new students. [Albany Business Review]

    * Vice is suing a small business named Virtue Marketing, alleging trademark infringement. Apparently the media company’s in-house marketing agency is also called Virtue. Hey, Vice, just change the name to Greed and you’ll be set. [THR, Esq. / Hollywood Reporter]

    12 Comments / / Jun 4, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • Jeb Bush  (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

    Election Law, Politics

    Is Jeb Bush Running For President, Or Just Crapping On Election Law?

    Is this would-be presidential candidate breaking the law?

    23 Comments / / Jun 3, 2015 at 1:00 PM
  • grade inflation

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.03.15

    * C. Michael Kamps, the man who filed a pro se suit against Baylor Law with claims that he was denied admission because his GPA predated grade inflation, recently lost his bid to get SCOTUS to review his case. It’s too bad — he seems like a total gunner. [ABA Journal]

    * If you thought that Ruth Bader Ginsburg was the biggest celebutante justice on the Supreme Court, then you’d be dead wrong. According to Professor Rick Hasen’s research, it’s Sonia Sotomayor who’s stealing the spotlight at the high court. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Senator Elizabeth Warren, the queen of taking Wall Street to task, now has her sights set on SEC Chairwoman Mary Jo White. In a 13-page letter, the politician called the former Debevoise partner’s tenure “extremely disappointing.” [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert’s arraignment was rescheduled from this Thursday to next Tuesday. No reason was given for the change, but maybe it has something to do with the fact that there’s still “no attorney of record” on the case. [National Law Journal]

    * Many doctors are hoping that tort reform will save them from litigating their malpractice cases, but there’s an easy alternative. In order to be sued less often, doctors should try to talk more to their patients. What a novel concept. [The Upshot / New York Times]

    21 Comments / / Jun 3, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • boat boating

    Attorney Misconduct, Drinking

    OUI Lawyer Accused In Drunken Boating Accident After Girl Loses Arm

    You’ll never believe what this criminal defense attorney named his boat.

    129 Comments / / Jun 2, 2015 at 11:30 AM
  • Damn Dewey dollars...

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.02.15

    * McDermott Will & Emery poached six partners from K&L Gates as part of its Dallas office “re-launch.” Their poor paralegals: Right now, the lawyers are working in temporary offices, and don’t have access to land lines. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Dean Paul Mahoney of UVA Law announced he’ll be stepping down from his position on June 30, 2016, after eight years of dedicated service to the school. Law students, please lower your collars to a half-pop in light of this news. [UVA Today]

    * Dewey think these defendants are full of themselves? The former leaders of this failed firm had insane and enviable compensation packages, but that doesn’t mean their multimillion-dollar guarantees weren’t justified — or even deserved. [Am Law Daily]

    * Experts speculate that the Justice Department’s case against FIFA could strengthen its global power, but of course, that will hinge on whether Loretta Lynch can get RICO charges to stick for conduct that took place overseas. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * After months of going back and forth on their urge to merge, Hiscock & Barclay completed its combination with Damon Morey. The new 275-lawyer firm will be known as Barclay Damon, and could possibly become a member of the Am Law 200. []

    * Legal marijuana business need lawyers and bankers, but those willing to advise them are few and far between. If you want to join the green rush and learn how to help these people comply with the law, come to our marijuana law reception later this month. [Forbes]

    15 Comments / / Jun 2, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • drunk with a tie around head

    Drinking, Legal Ethics

    Drinking + Lawyering = Epic Fail

    Put down the booze, lawyers.

    17 Comments / / Jun 1, 2015 at 1:15 PM
  • Oyez! Oyez! Oyez!

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.01.15

    * A litigant with a Supreme pimp hand? Darius Clark, the man whose child-abuse case — which is currently before SCOTUS — will determine whether teachers may testify of behalf children, was indicted for allegedly running a prostitution ring from jail. [Northeast Ohio Media Group]

    * Judge Mark Fuller of the Middle District of Alabama was arrested last summer on domestic violence charges after his wife confronted him about an alleged affair with a law clerk. What a gent! He’ll be resigning from the bench August 1. [USA Today]

    * You can roll your eyes at Rand Paul all you want, but several key parts of the Patriot Act expired shortly after midnight because the Senate was unable to reach a deal to extend it. (FYI, DOJ may still use grandfathered privacy-poaching techniques.) [New York Times]

    * “Nothing changes. The system is disgusting. There is no due process.” Do you want to read the story that made Cuba’s government ban an American legal journalist from any further coverage of the country’s court system? Of course you do. [Daily Business Review]

    * “I can’t preserve caution in my delight with Ruth.” This is what retired Justice David Souter wrote about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s performance after her first week on the bench. He already knew back then that she was no-no-no-NOTORIOUS. [Boston Globe]

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert, who recently resigned from Dickstein Shapiro following his indictment, was allegedly paying a former student “hundreds of thousands of dollars” to keep quiet about past sexual abuse at the politician’s hands. [New York Times]

    * Beau Biden, former state attorney general of Delaware, major in the Delaware Army National Guard’s JAG Corps, and son of Vice President Joe Biden, RIP. [Washington Post]

    56 Comments / / Jun 1, 2015 at 9:07 AM
  • Lindsay Lohan (Photo by Robin Marchant/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.29.15

    * It may have taken two years, but Lindsay Lohan finally completed her community service for her reckless driving conviction. In other news, for the first time in almost eight years, the Hollywood has-been is off probation. Yay! [Los Angeles Times]

    * A former staff attorney at Drinker Biddle was suspended from practice after overbilling his time doing doc review work by just a tad — 418.5 hours, to be exact. He owes the firm $12,500 to be paid in monthly installments of $100. [Legal Intelligencer]

    * An ex-assistant dean and a professor at Cleveland-Marshall Law filed suit against Dean Craig Boise, claiming he retaliated against them after they assisted the faculty in unionizing. This, after they were offered raises of $0 or $666. [Northeast Ohio Media]

    * Someone’s allegedly been a very bad boy: Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert was indicted by a federal grand jury for lying to the FBI in an attempt to conceal payoffs to a third party to cover up his “prior bad acts.” We wonder what those “bad acts” were… [BuzzFeed News]

    * We bet you didn’t know that if you get convicted for sex on the beach you’d have to serve jail time and register as a sex offender. Protip: Don’t let 3-year-olds catch you doing the dirty in public. You’ll regret it for life (or until you win an appeal). [Bradenton Herald]

    27 Comments / / May 29, 2015 at 9:02 AM
  • student-loan-debt

    Law Schools, Student Loans

    Law School Ditches Federal Loan Program, Forces Students To Take Out Private Loans

    Which school would do such a thing to its students? It’s none other than…

    21 Comments / / May 28, 2015 at 1:19 PM
  • Marilyn J. Mosby (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.28.15

    * As it turns out, Marilyn Mosby, State’s Attorney for Baltimore, has been a legal all-star for much of her adult life. Not only did she file charges against police officers in the death of Freddie Gray, but she won a case in front of Judge Judy. Watch the video below. [New York Daily News]

    * “No one needs more than 18 years in the high stakes and extremely powerful position of Supreme Court justice.” If you’re against lifetime terms for SCOTUS justices, you’re going to love Fix the Court’s new initiative for voluntary term limits. Who’d actually follow through with this? [Legal Times]

    * The DOJ brought a landmark case against FIFA officials, but there’s likely going to be a problem getting those who were charged extradited from Switzerland. Legal experts say it’ll be at least six months until we can get them in the U.S. penalty box. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Sure, Dewey & LeBoeuf’s former chief financial officer may have referred to the firm’s “fake income” and hoped for a “clueless auditor,” but come on, that doesn’t mean that he was involved in anything fraudulent. He’s just a really “blunt” kind of guy. [Am Law Daily]

    * UC law students are thanking Gov. Jerry Brown they’re exempt from supplemental tuition increases — “[they] are paying a ton already for [their] degrees.” Good thing legal education is in the toilet, otherwise they’d be paying the fee hikes. [Los Angeles Times]

    * Comedian Tracy Morgan has settled his personal injury lawsuit against Wal-Mart over the tractor-trailer truck crash he was involved in last summer. The terms of the settlement have not been disclosed, but we imagine someone will leak them online soon. [Reuters]

    28 Comments / / May 28, 2015 at 8:40 AM