Recent Headlines from Above the Law
* Here’s a very important lesson for all of the lawyers reading this: thinking about work while you’re on the way to work doesn’t mean that you’re actually working. This novel argument failed miserably for a Biglaw partner trying to get out of a huge insurance claim. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Justice Scalia isn’t very fond of the media’s coverage of SCOTUS: “They don’t like conservatives on the court, or anywhere else for that matter. They do a lousy job. You can’t expect them to do a good job.” Wow, tell us how you really feel. [Arkansas Online]
* “Enough! Enough! Call Loretta Lynch for a vote. Get her confirmed. Put her in place. Let her do her job.” After months of watching his pick for attorney general wait around thanks to political gridlock, President Obama has finally had it with this sh*t. [New York Times]
* Good news, associates! If you leave your law firm job for a Supreme Court clerkship, you’ll likely still be able to receive that gigantic SCOTUS hiring bonus — to the tune of $300,000 plus! — if you return to the firm you left when it’s over. [National Law Journal]
* “Hard questions have to be asked at law schools whose modest reputations and forgiving admission standards do not ensure their graduates gainful employment.” High LSAT scores are down, bar failure is up, and law schools still say it’s not their fault. [Bloomberg]
What surprised Neal Katyal during his voyage into the world of television?
2014 was a banner year for lateral movement in the legal industry. But, which law firms hired the most lateral partners? Which firms had the greatest number of partner defections?
Throughout 2014, along with our friends at Good2BSocial, ATL once again researched the social media practices of law firms. Today we publish the first component of our findings: our second annual Social Law Firm Index, where we identify which specific firms are making the most effective use of social media.
* George Zimmerman was arrested for aggravated assault and domestic violence with a weapon. His lawyer said his client “has not been lucky with the ladies.” He hasn’t been lucky with being a decent human being, either. [USA Today]
* Lawrence McCreery, the Hawaii lawyer who licked a client’s ear and inspired the judge on his case to call him a “dirty old man,” has had his harassment conviction upheld on appeal. Get excited, he’s still got a law license, ladies. [Associated Press]
* We may soon see same-sex marriage bans in three states struck down, as the Fifth Circuit “appeared poised” to do so after oral arguments on Friday. Roberta Kaplan, our 2013 Lawyer of the Year, delivered a standout performance in arguing against Mississippi’s ban. [BuzzFeed]
* What do Sidley Austin, Baker & McKenzie, Reed Smith, Hogan Lovells, and Skadden Arps have in common? Their names were used in phishing emails to scam people out of their money. Some might say that’s business as usual. [Crain’s Chicago Business]
* An arrest was made in the forcible rape of a woman — presumably a law student — that took place in the stacks of the Southern University Law Center’s library last semester. The accused rapist is currently behind held without bond. [WBRZ]
Shall we start with the good news, or the bad news?
If you are looking to move in the beginning of January, your finger should be pressing the call app in your phone.
* Barack Obama laid out his plans for an immigration overhaul last night, daring the members of Congress to pass a bill if they didn’t like it. Consider that to be a presidential burn. [New York Times]
* Who’s got the God View now? In an effort to stop pissing off its paying customers, Uber hired Harriet Pearson of Hogan Lovells to take a look at its data-privacy practices. [Bloomberg]
* Dean Jack Boger of UNC Law will be stepping down this summer. He says his journey to deanship started in hell and ended in paradise. We’re not sure law students ever get out of the hellscape. [Daily Tar Heel]
* South Texas College of Law launched an Oil & Gas Law Institute in the hope of making its graduates’ résumés look pretty enough to get them jobs. [Texas Lawyer]
* Darren Wilson, the Ferguson cop who killed Michael Brown, is in talks to resign ahead of a grand jury’s decision on whether or not to indict him. Wise choice? [CNN]
* When Loretta Lynch still worked at Hogan & Hartson (now known as Hogan Lovells thanks to a merger), her colleagues described her as a warm person without “a political bone in her body.” That said, best of luck to her in D.C. [National Law Journal]
* The D.C. Circuit upheld the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive opt-out plan for religious employers, but since “[t]he court is wrong,” we can count on a at least a few organizations that’ll refuse to comply. Gee, thanks a lot, Obama. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Some call the latest Biglaw tie-up “law-firm Darwinism,” but hey, “[i]t’s not like [Bingham’s] a wounded gazelle and we are pouncing on them,” says a too coy Morgan Lewis lawyer. [Philadelphia Inquirer]
* Fashion law may be a $985 billion global industry, but only five law school courses on the topic exist in the U.S. Why? “There’s no defensible reason except that fashion is perceived as a frivolous subject.” [AFP]
* This woman plans to appeal a $1 billion divorce settlement award because it’s not “fair and equitable.” In her defense, she did get a very small percentage of her ex-husband’s multibillion-dollar wealth. [People]
* Wage and hour laws have never been so sexy: Thanks to this court ruling, Rick’s Cabaret is going to have to make it rain on thousands of strippers to the tune of more than $10 million. [New York Times]