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

  • Don't cry, Paul! (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

    Money, Paul Clement, Small Law Firms

    Federal Judge Says Paul Clement Isn’t Special Enough To Command Insane Hourly Rates

    How much was this superstar attorney trying to charge his client?

    33 Comments / / Apr 6, 2015 at 1:43 PM
  • Law Revue 2014

    Contests, Law Revue

    ATL’s 7th Annual Law Revue Video Contest

    It’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for, law students! Send your law revue videos in ASAP!

    11 Comments / / Apr 6, 2015 at 12:45 PM
  • law school closure

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 04.06.15

    * “It’s unconscionable, and I believe they have breached the fiduciary duty to the law school, to the students and to the public.” Appalachian Law is struggling, and some believe its trustees are preventing the school from saving itself. Will this be the first school to fold? [Inside Higher Ed]

    * “We were all running this ATM machine called big law firms.” Before 2008, it was easier for large law firms to make money, but now, there’s an “insurmountable gap” in revenue between the industry’s heavy hitters and the rest of the pack. [Wall Street Journal]

    * You’ll pry their job security from their cold, dead hands: William Mitchell Law professors know that layoffs may be coming thanks to the school’s planned merger with Hamline Law, and have filed suit to protect the Tenure Code. [Minnesota Public Radio News]

    * Bonus season isn’t the only thing that Davis Polk has cornered the market on. According to the latest Bloomberg M&A rankings, the firm came out on top during the first quarter of 2015 when it came to advising on major deals. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]

    * “Whatever happened to The New York Times’ fact-checker?” Here’s yet another harsh critique of Professor Steven Davidoff Solomon’s cringeworthy defense of law schools, and this time it’s from a fellow law professor. Ouch. [The Belly of the Beast via Am Law Daily]

    * Jay Edelson of Edelson PC may be the “most hated person in Silicon Valley,” but he probably doesn’t care about being Liked — after all, he recently filed suit against Facebook over the social networking company’s face recognition software. [New York Times]

    28 Comments / / Apr 6, 2015 at 8:45 AM
  • layoff notice

    ACLU, Layoffs

    Nationwide Layoff Watch: Lawyers Swept Out For Spring Cleaning

    It’s sad that even our nation’s do-gooders can’t escape the cruelty of layoffs.

    55 Comments / / Apr 3, 2015 at 1:31 PM
  • tyga service 2

    Rap, Shoes

    Ballsy Process Server Spoils Famous Rapper’s Party

    You got served, bro!

    7 Comments / / Apr 3, 2015 at 12:58 PM
  • Gun 2nd amendment

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 04.03.15

    * Even more law schools are doing away with their LSAT requirements. Let’s give a great big welcome to Drake Law and St. John’s Law, who are joining the likes of SUNY Buffalo Law and Iowa Law. Woohoo, welcome aboard the bandwagon, folks! [U.S. News & World Report]

    * Judge James W. Haley Jr. of the Virginia Court of Appeals held a drunk intruder at gunpoint while he waited for the police to arrive. This unwanted houseguest was only wearing one shoe as he wandered through the judge’s home. Oopsie! [Free Lance-Star]

    * Well, that was quick. Fried Frank has hired away James “Jamie” Wareham, DLA Piper’s $5 million man, about four years after he lateraled to the firm from Paul Hastings. April Fools’ Day was his last day at the firm… or was it? J/K, it was for real. [Am Law Daily]

    * J. Michael Farren, the ex-White House lawyer who was convicted of attempting to murder his wife and sentenced to 15 years in prison, is now facing the loss of his law license. This should really be the very least of his worries. [Connecticut Law Tribune]

    * The U.S. Marshals Service has increased the reward for tips related to the shooting of U.S. District Judge Terrence Berg. Now you’ll get $50,000 if you’ve got information that’ll lead to arrests and convictions of the suspects who shot a federal jurist. [Detroit News]

    12 Comments / / Apr 3, 2015 at 9:01 AM
  • cigar gangster

    Law Schools, Quote of the Day

    Want To Join The Cartel? Better Pick A Top Law School!

    Why is legal practice like a cartel?

    16 Comments / / Apr 2, 2015 at 2:29 PM
  • Bob McCulloch

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 04.02.15

    * “He said what he wanted people to hear and he didn’t fully answer questions.” St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch of Ferguson infamy spoke at Missouri Law yesterday. We understand there was some sort of an “incident” with the SBA as well. We may have more on this later. [KBIA]

    * “Don’t panic; you’re bound to get something eventually.” California had some of the worst employment statistics for law graduates after the recession. If you’re a member of the Lost Generation, these stories may resonate with you. [California Lawyer]

    * New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez was federally indicted on corruption charges yesterday for allegedly accepting more than $1 million worth of gifts and campaign contributions in exchange for political favors. Way to do Jersey lawyers proud. [AP]

    * Jury selection begins on April 27 for the criminal trial against the former members of Dewey & LeBoeuf’s top brass. The prosecution dropped three counts, but Joel Sanders and the Steves must still defend themselves against 100 others. Yikes! [New York Law Journal]

    * Gordon Smith, one of the writers for Better Call Saul, doesn’t think the show’s portrayal of lawyer life will inspire young people to “run out to become attorneys.” After all, Jimmy McGill’s home and office haven’t exactly been depicted as “glamorous.” [WSJ Law Blog]

    14 Comments / / Apr 2, 2015 at 9:07 AM
  • Angry

    Benchslaps, State Judges Are Clowns

    Judge Benchslaps Fellow Jurist In Awesomely Feisty Footnote

    Whoa, these judges probably shouldn’t sit next to each other on the bench at court.

    16 Comments / / Apr 1, 2015 at 2:45 PM
  • Work/life balance? LOL

    Biglaw, Email Scandals

    Biglaw Firm Makes Big Joke Out Of Work/Life Balance

    Does this firm really care about its associates’ quality of life? Nope.

    93 Comments / / Apr 1, 2015 at 2:03 PM
  • Coming to a law school near you?

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 04.01.15

    * And the law school deans rejoiced! Enrollment is scraping the bottom of the barrel, but applications are only down by 2.9 percent so far this year. If you cross your eyes and squint, you may be able to see some signs of stabilization for the legal academy. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Indiana has more than one controversial law on the books. Say hello to Purvi Patel, the first woman in the country to be charged, convicted, and sentenced on a feticide charge. Critics say this conviction will have a negative effect on women. [WNCN]

    * When the going gets tough in Biglaw, the tough get going — on either laying off their employees or cutting their real estate losses. Per Colliers International’s Law Firm Services Group, firms have recently reduced their office space by 15 to 32 percent. [Am Law Daily]

    * “We cannot underestimate the seriousness of this incident.” Terrible news: Yesterday, members of the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front took Turkish prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz hostage in an Instanbul courthouse and later killed him. [Reuters]

    * Which state is the worst in the country for job-seeking law school graduates? That would be Mississippi, where it’s harder to get a job as an attorney than it is to spell the name of the state while intoxicated. There are 10.53 lawyers for every legal job opening. [WDAM]

    23 Comments / / Apr 1, 2015 at 9:04 AM
  • shocked woman lawyer laptop

    Attorney Misconduct, Crime

    Law Firm Partner Charged After Pretending To Be A Lawyer For A Decade

    Why bother wasting away in law school when you can just tell people you’re a lawyer?

    46 Comments / / Mar 31, 2015 at 12:02 PM
  • 'I misread the question.'

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 03.31.15

    * Reunited and it feels so good… to have more tuition money in our pockets: following more than 40 years apart, Rutgers-Camden Law and Rutgers-Newark Law may merge to create the Rutgers School of Law, one of the largest law schools in the country. [NJ.com]

    * In case you missed it, the courtroom erupted into chaos in the final moments of the Ellen Pao v. Kleiner Perkins trial because a juror “made a mistake” and decided to change his vote mid-verdict. Come on, give the guy a break — he’s almost 90. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Lawmakers are awfully interested in the way that the SEC is doing its job, and they’re drafting new laws in the hope of helping the agency out. We’ll let you know how helpful this was in a few years if those bills are ever passed. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * After an incredibly unsuccessful defense of its ban on same-sex marriage, Wisconsin is going to have to shell out more than $1 million in legal fees to the ACLU — the largest single payout yet by a state in the history of cases of this kind. [National Law Journal]

    * If you’re looking to transfer to another law school after your first year in the trenches, here are three things that you absolutely, positively must do to ensure your chances of being accepted elsewhere. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News & World Report]

    8 Comments / / Mar 31, 2015 at 9:05 AM
  • Apple logo 2

    In-House Counsel, Law Schools

    Want To Work In-House At Apple? Go To These Law Schools

    Which law school is best represented in Apple’s legal department? You might be surprised.

    26 Comments / / Mar 30, 2015 at 1:14 PM
  • Amanda Knox

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 03.30.15

    * Talk about a Friday news dump! In case you missed these high-profile rulings, Amanda Knox was acquitted of murder charges in Italy (for the second time), and Ellen Pao lost her discrimination case against Kleiner Perkins. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Use this slideshow to compare how North Carolina law schools are doing in terms of job placement. Duke was on top, and NCCU was dead last. Bonus: There were very few school-funded jobs to strip out of the data — the numbers were just that bad on their own. [Triad Business Journal]

    * LSAC doesn’t want to to adopt new disability accommodations for the LSAT because they “show a complete disregard for the importance of standardized testing conditions.” It’d rather show a complete disregard for applicants’ disabilities. [National Law Journal]

    * Widener? I hardly know her! Thanks to the ABA, this saying has new meaning in legal circles. With the law school regulator’s blessing, Widener Law’s Delaware and Harrisburg campuses will officially become two separate schools effective July 1. [News Journal]

    * Following blowback over the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Indiana Governor Mike Pence says he’ll push for legislation clarifying that the controversial law isn’t intended to support discrimination against the LGBT community. Suuure. [Indy Star]

    113 Comments / / Mar 30, 2015 at 9:07 AM
  • Andrew Gilbertson

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 03.27.15

    * Brooklyn Law’s dean thinks “too much power rests with the [NCBE],” and that we need a new way to license lawyers. Brooklyn Law’s July 2014 bar passage rate was ~10 percent lower than the year prior, so perhaps he doesn’t like how those grapes taste. [National Law Journal]

    * A man on trial for a bank robbery committed in 2013 pooped his pants while on the stand, removed some of said poop from his pants, and started eating it because the Virgin Mary told him to do it. If you couldn’t tell, he’s got an insanity defense. [Inquisitr]

    * A new Citigroup report says Biglaw firms are at “high risk for cyberintrusions,” but so few will admit that they’ve been hacked it’s impossible to tell if the problem is growing. Don’t worry, clients, your confidential files might be safe. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * People may think “this is a crappy, for-profit school that didn’t make it. But it could have been a great law school.” Charleston Law’s founding dean wrote a damning blog post about his colleagues for their attempts to sell the school to InfiLaw. [Post and Courier]

    * “[B]eing well-dressed and having a law school diploma” isn’t enough to ensure that you’ll get a job anymore. Quick, take some advice from the career services dean at a school where 47.2 percent of recent grads are working full-time as lawyers. [Huffington Post]

    19 Comments / / Mar 27, 2015 at 8:53 AM
  • Angry

    Biglaw, Federal Judges, Small Law Firms

    Federal Judge Begs Lawyers To STFU In ‘Behemoth’ Pleadings

    Lawyers, your pleadings are supposed to be “short and plain” — not 303 pages long!

    75 Comments / / Mar 26, 2015 at 11:58 AM
  • Green California Road Sign with Dramatic Clouds and Sky.

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 03.26.15

    * If you thought Squire Patton Boggs would be able to meet its projection of $1 billion in combined revenue after its merger, you’d be wrong. If you thought the firm would be able to meet its projection of having more than 1,500 lawyers after its merger, you’d also be wrong. [National Law Journal]

    * Use this slideshow to compare how California law schools are doing in terms of job placement. Stanford was on top, and Golden Gate was dead last. Bonus: If you strip out school-funded jobs, the numbers look even worse. [Sacramento Business Journal]

    * Uh… oops? Keila Ravelo, the ex-Willkie Farr partner who was accused of stealing millions of dollars from two of her former firms, is now at the center of questions over settlements in credit-card cases she worked on. [New York Law Journal via ABA Journal]

    * “Please help us heal.” David Messerschmitt’s widow is begging for information about the DLA Piper associate’s death. The case is being actively investigated, and police believe the person of interest who was seen on surveillance footage is a woman. [Legal Times]

    * In case you missed it yesterday, U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was charged with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. The first charge could result in up to five years in jail, while the second could result in a life sentence. Yikes! [WSJ Law Blog]

    29 Comments / / Mar 26, 2015 at 9:01 AM