LEWW is delighted to bring you the first all-Jewish edition of Legal Eagle Wedding Watch! The MOT really represented this week. Mazel Tov to all the happy couples and their proud parents!
Here are the finalists:
Congratulations to the Columbia Law Revue crew for putting on a great show, which we attended on Thursday night. We were lukewarm about some of their prior efforts, but our opinion has changed entirely.
Check out this great clip, a parody of this SNL video, which is currently #61 on YouTube in today’s Top Favorites for Comedy:
Our recent post about Aaron Charney and his well-to-do family background generated tons of discussion (about 90 reader comments). We’d like to pass along two pieces of additional information on the subject.
From a tipster who went to the same temple in the Syracause area (Temple Adath Yeshuran) as the Charney family:
“The Charneys do quite well for themselves with their stores. They never seemed to be wanting for cash, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to learn that he’s got a trust fund.”
If Charney does come from such an affluent background, it may explain his willingness to “roll the dice” by pushing forward with his lawsuit against S&C. Someone from more modest means might have taken a more modest settlement, then moved on to a job at another firm. But someone with family money to fall back on might be more willing to shoot for a seven-figure payday, knowing that he could ride out even a lengthy period of unemployment with parental help.
But our source also has this to add:
“I’m not sure if Aaron Charney’s father is the only owner of the clothing store chain. The business may be a family business with more than one owner.”
We looked back at Bob Kolker’s profile of Aaron Charney for New York magazine. Kolker identifies Charney as “[t]he only son of an owner of a small chain of men’s clothing stores in the Syracuse area.” The indefinite article — “an owner,” rather than “the owner” — leaves open the possibility of multiple owners.
So this might dilute Charney’s patrimony, if other branches of his extended family also have their fingers in the dynastic till. Unlike, say, a chunk of the Wal-Mart fortune, multiple heirs from multiple families could be quite dilutive of Aaron’s share.
Does anyone know if Aaron Charney’s father is the sole owner of the Charney chain of stores? Anyone care to estimate what the chain’s annual revenue might be?
As always, if you can shed more light on any of this, please drop us a line. Earlier: Brokeback Lawfirm: Aaron Charney’s Doing Just Fine, Thank You
* The Guber Downward-Facing Dog Trial coming soon. [De Novo; MSN]
* If you don’t know who’s the “real lawyer” at the table, it’s you. [PrawfsBlawg]
* Kosher-ness may be inapplicable to porn, but I would not want to venture a guess as to Mr. Cohen’s idea behind his trademark. [Likelihood of Confusion]
* Another reason hedge funds are shady? You don’t say. [Professor Bainbridge]
Supreme Court Justice Rolando T. Acosta has ruled that Seinfeld must pay a real-estate broker a commission of at least $98,750 for the $3.95 million townhouse he and his wife purchased in 2005.
Seinfeld had testified that the broker, Tamara Cohen, did not deserve the payment, as she had not been available when he and his wife, Jessica, wanted to see the West 82nd Street home. The Seinfelds also testified that they did not know that the reason Cohen did not return their calls was that she was an observant Jew and observed the Sabbath.
Acosta held that, notwithstanding Cohen’s failure to immediately return the Seinfelds’ calls, “[T]he evidence clearly indicates that she served as the Seinfelds’ real estate broker.”
It’s too bad “Seinfeld” isn’t still on the air. We could easily see this scenario — a real estate broker failing to return calls promptly because she’s a Sabbath observer — turning into a plot line.
(Actually, we wouldn’t be surprised to see it turn up in the next season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” This is something we could totally see Larry David getting irate over. ‘Cause he gets irate over everything.) Comedian Seinfeld Ordered to Pay Real Estate Broker Fee [New York Law Journal via Law.com]
Because of Bonusmania, we’ve fallen behind a little in Legal Eagle Wedding Watch. In this post, we discuss lawyer weddings from the weekend of December 2-3.
The most high-profile wedding that week was between media heiress Anne Hearst, sister of Patty Hearst, and novelist Jay McInerney (announcement here). But there were also three marriages involving attorneys:
* A unanimous Supreme Court overturns a Ninth Circuit ruling in a criminal (habeas) case. In other news, this morning the sun rose from the east. [New York Times; Washington Post]
* Enron’s Jeff Skilling may get to pass “Go” on his way to jail after all. [WSJ Law Blog]
* BCS vs. the Electoral College: Is the controversy over Florida or Michigan playing Ohio State the college football version of Bush v. Gore? Or perhaps that was the LSU/USC split of 2003-04? [National Journal via MSNBC]
* “Float driver in S.C. Christmas parade charged with drunken driving.” [AP]
* Christmas trees are back up in the Sea-Tac airport. Rabbi Elazar Bogomilsky has said he won’t file a lawsuit. But if somebody else does, the Seattle airport authorities will have to throw in a menorah, a Kikombe cha Umoja, and a snowman. [Seattle Times]
* Congrats to Troy Smith on winning the Heisman. As always, there’s a legal connection, which this time involves Ohio State, the Heisman, Archie Griffin, and Woody Hayes. [WSJ Law Blog]
* All Christmas trees have been removed from the Seattle airport, after a rabbi threatened to sue unless an eight-foot menorah was put up. [King5.com]
* Finally, Cedar Point is standing up for students’ rights, by lobbying the government for longer summer vacations. [Associated Press]
* Wish they all could be California… prisons? Unlikely. [New York Times]
* The Williams sisters are in court. No word yet on how they were served. [CNN]
Recently we asked you for juicy gossip about gigantic legal fees. We didn’t expect to receive a response so quickly. From the WSJ Law Blog:
NYU Law School professor Burt Neuborne worked for nearly eight years to help Holocaust survivors win a $1.25 billion settlement from Swiss banks accused of helping the Nazis steal Jewish property. He then submitted a bill for $4,760,000. The rest, as they say, is controversy.
New York magazine has a feature on the fee flap. A group of Holocaust survivors are furious with Neuborne for charging so much money for his services. Many say they thought Neuborne had taken the case pro bono and that he had said so many times. The executive director of the World Jewish Congress calls the bill a “moral disgrace.” Neuborne already made $4.4 million in a similar suit against German industry.
* Bill Childs disses AEI’s parties. He just doesn’t appreciate a good formal gala. [TortsProf Blog]
* FAA regulations: comply with weirded-out flight attendant at all times, no matter how irrational she is. [Prettier Than Napoleon]
* Apple claims right to word “podcast”; next: all soundwaves between 4500 and 6000 MHz. [Overlawyered]
* Blogs can be used against you in court. Duh. [Boston Globe via Elefant]
* Soon to be issued to all incoming associates. [The Billable Hour]
* The first judicial citation to CuteOverload.com. [Volokh]
* Two new books attack string theory; class action lawsuit against Stephen Hawking’s “Brief History of Time” inevitable. [New Yorker]
* “I keep forgetting how women are disadvantaged by having to write a research agenda, but I am sure they have to be. Somehow. Always disadvantaged.” [Kate Litvak comment on PrawfsBlawg]
* Dom Deluise is not only still alive, but can legally sue his litigious ex-daughter-in-law’s lawyer. [Overlawyered]
* Weird Al Yankovic also alive, has aspirations of Jeremy Blachman-dom. [Overlawyered]
* Some might call it clever marketing of E. coli lawsuits, but I say it’s spinach and I say to hell with it. [Wall Street Journal]
* It’s not too late to download my law review article, and move me higher on the dowload rankings. [SSRN]
* Protest demands recognition of zombie legal rights: “What do we want?” “BRAINS!” “When do we want it?” “BRAINS!” [Boing Boing]
* Upcoming deadline #1: The statute of limitations for suing Merck over Vioxx expires for many many putative plaintiffs today. Court clerks will be busy as attorneys forum shop. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Upcoming deadline #2: The Days of Awe end Sunday, and Yom Kippur starts Sunday night. Stephen Colbert offers a toll-free number, 1-888-OOPS-JEW, if you wish to atone to him. The recorded disclaimer alone (and Colbert’s addendum afterwards) makes it worth it, but you get what you pay for. [News From Me]
* It has nothing to do with the law, but how can we avoid mentioning this important press release on Kazakh-Uzbek relations? [Borat.tv]
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Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: email@example.com.
Deal flow has clearly picked recently up for most US associates, counsels and partners in Hong Kong/China and Singapore. We are on the phone with a lot of these folks on a daily basis, many of whom we have known for years. Further, the head of our Asia team, Evan Jowers, and Kinney’s founder and president, Robert Kinney, frequently meet in person with leading US partners in Asia to assess their needs and keep on top of the inside scoop at as many firms as possible. The need for legal recruiting help in Asia from experienced recruiters appears to be live and well. In March, Evan and Robert were in Beijing at such meetings, in April, Evan was in Hong Kong, and for half of June Evan will be in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Thus its pretty easy for us to tell when there has been an across-the-market pick up in capital markets and corporate work.
On an average day in Asia when Evan and Robert visit firms, they typically have 5 to 9 meetings a day, mostly with US partners in the market. The reason they have these meetings is not simply because Kinney makes a lot of US attorney placements in Asia and that a particular firm may have openings; instead these are just visits with friends. After years of working together as business partners, the folks at Kinney are actually these peoples’ friends. The firms Kinney work closely with in Asia (which is just about every law firm – call us if you want to know the one firm in the world we will never place anyone with again, ever, and why) look forward to the visits, or at least act like they do. After seven years in the market, many of the client partners are former associate candidates. Also, these US partners see Kinney as a very good source of market information as well, because they know how deep their contacts are in the market and how frequently they are speaking to counterparts at peer firms.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
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