Morning Docket

  • J.D. = Just Debt

    American Bar Association / ABA, Biglaw, Disasters / Emergencies, Drugs, Federal Judges, Law Schools, Marijuana, Morning Docket, Student Loans

    Morning Docket: 08.11.14

    * Baker & McKenzie was bumped from the top spot in the Global 100 last year when DLA Piper swooped in to steal the firm’s glory. This year, B&M is back with a vengeance, and richer than ever. Take that, DLA dopes. [Am Law Daily]

    * “I’m pretty sure I just got fired.” Before the bud business was big enough for Biglaw, the mere suggestion of going green was allegedly enough to warrant some pretty major disciplinary action from a leading law firm. [National Law Journal]

    * Judge Thomas Griesa is toying with holding Argentina in contempt for saying that it didn’t default. Argentina struck back with the social media hashtag #GrieFault. Clever. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s defense team has an expert who says that any jury in Massachusetts will be tainted because of the “inflammatory” news coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * The ABA’s new Task Force on the Financing of Legal Education held its first public hearing to try to figure out why law school tuition is high. The ABA is so late to the party it’s not even funny. [ABA Journal]

    4 Comments / / Aug 11, 2014 at 9:06 AM
  • nervous OCI interview

    6th Circuit, Bankruptcy, Biglaw, Federal Judges, Gay, Gay Marriage, Health Care / Medicine, Job Searches, Lateral Moves, Law Schools, Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 08.08.14

    * When it comes to all of the same-sex marriage cases that are currently before the Sixth Circuit, the deciding vote could be cast by Judge Jeffrey Sutton, a Republican appointee. [National Law Journal]

    * Weil Gotshal snagged a partner from right under one of its largest competitor’s noses. Ray Shrock, formerly of Kirkland & Ellis, may someday co-chair Weil’s restructuring group. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * “I got the reward that most volunteers get — which is I ended up having to read many, many hundreds of pages.” This Ogletree Deakins partner figured out how to undo Obamacare in his spare time, and all he got were these lousy bifocals. [Greenville News]

    * On-campus interviewing season is almost upon us, so we’re going to give you all of the tips you can stomach. Here are a few more ways that you can hit all of your interviews out of the park. [The Careerist]

    * Albany Law and the University at Albany are shockingly not already affiliated with each other, but they’re exploring an “operational alliance.” Will that mean fewer faculty buyouts, or…? [Albany Business Review]

    0 Comments / / Aug 8, 2014 at 9:14 AM
  • 'That'll be $27,000...'

    10th Circuit, Bankruptcy, Biglaw, Dewey & LeBoeuf, Gay, Gay Marriage, Gender, Law School Deans, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Rankings, SCOTUS, Supreme Court, Women's Issues

    Morning Docket: 08.07.14

    * Let’s get ready to rumble! Not wanting to be left out of the party, Oklahoma has also asked the Supreme Court to take a look at its same-sex marriage statute which was recently slapped down by the Tenth Circuit. [National Law Journal]

    * Dewey know what financial restructuring adviser Joff Mitchell of Zolfo Cooper said to this failing firm’s partners right before it flopped for good? “Look, there is no way here to save this firm.” Ouch. That had to have sucked. [Forbes]

    * The examiner who was appointed to monitor law firm billing for the City of Detroit’s bankruptcy is now questioning Dentons’ fees of up to $27K per month to talk to the press. Whoa there… [Detroit Free Press]

    * Working Mother and Flex-Time Lawyers have released the latest ranking of the Top 50 Law Firms for Women. Vivia Chen feels “a bit dirty” after reading the list — and you probably should, too. [The Careerist]

    * Leisure Suit Larry’s successors are here to stay for a while: Case Western Reserve Law’s co-interim deans will stay on in their current positions for the upcoming school year. [Crain's Cleveland Business]

    1 Comment / / Aug 7, 2014 at 9:05 AM
  • baby gun

    Abortion, Biglaw, Federal Judges, Gay, Gay Marriage, Gender, Job Searches, Law Professors, Law Schools, Mergers and Acquisitions, Morning Docket, SCOTUS, Supreme Court, Tax Law, Utah, Women's Issues

    Morning Docket: 08.06.14

    * Utah appealed its same-sex marriage case to the Supreme Court, making it the first state whose law was smacked down by an appellate court to do so. Let the countdown begin. [National Law Journal]

    * In the ruling that saved Alabama’s abortion clinics, Judge Myron Thompson likened the right to have an abortion to the right to bear arms. We can think of a few people who would take issue with that. [CNN]

    * In case you’ve been wondering why tax inversions are hot right now, you can blame it all on some bicycling tax and M&A lawyers from Skadden — call them bikedudes at law, if you will. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Law schools tout the fact that their graduates are finding jobs in “J.D. Advantage” positions. Meanwhile, it remains unclear how much of an advantage a law degree actually offers in these jobs. [Am Law Daily]

    * In a lawsuit peppered with crazy allegations, a law prof at Florida A&M claims in a gender discrimination complaint that male professors are “paid considerably more” than female professors. [Tampa Tribune]

    4 Comments / / Aug 6, 2014 at 8:59 AM
  • Girls in my high school brief cases all the time, it was no big deal.

    Abortion, Constitutional Law, Gay, Gay Marriage, Health Care / Medicine, Law Professors, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, SCOTUS, Supreme Court, Technology, Women's Issues

    Morning Docket: 08.05.14

    * According to Patron Saint RBG, the Supreme Court has never really come around on “the ability of women to decide for themselves what their destiny will be.” Gay people are doing well, though, so good for them. [New York Times]

    * Two law professors and a consultant built a model that predicts SCOTUS decisions with 69.7 percent accuracy, and justices’ votes with 70.9 percent accuracy. For lawyers who are bad at math, that’s damn near perfect. Nice work! [Vox]

    * An Alabama abortion clinic statute which required that doctors have admitting privileges at local hospitals was ruled unconstitutional. Perhaps this will be the death knell for these laws. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Idaho’s Supreme Court rejected Concordia Law’s bid to allow grads to sit for the bar before the ABA granted it provisional accreditation. Too bad, since lawyers are needed in Idaho. [National Law Journal]

    * Before you go to law school, you can learn how to gun with the best of them. That’s right, you can practice briefing cases before you even set foot in the door. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News]

    4 Comments / / Aug 5, 2014 at 8:27 AM
  • A summer associate livin' the life.

    American Bar Association / ABA, Biglaw, Death Penalty, Job Searches, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Summer Associates

    Morning Docket: 08.04.14

    * All work and no play makes summer associates sad, but they had a really great time this year, what with the lucky law students attending Broadway shows, sporting events, and Russian cabarets. Sounds like fun! [Am Law Daily]

    * Alas, not everyone was getting wined and dined this summer. Some lawyers can’t even find a place to work. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the legal services sector lost ~200 jobs during the month of July. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * It may be the “worst time in the history of legal education to go to law school,” but because of new programs being launched, at least some of our recent graduates will be less screwed. [New York Times]

    * “The ABA is used as a whipping boy for standing in the way of innovation,” but soon it’ll vote on revisions to its accreditation standards. Welcome to the party, ABA, thanks for being late. [National Law Journal]

    * It took 15 doses of lethal injection drugs to execute Joseph Wood when it should’ve taken one. Don’t worry, it wasn’t cruel and unusual punishment — the Arizona Department of Corrections says so. [CNN]

    5 Comments / / Aug 4, 2014 at 9:11 AM
  • 'Should I get my money back? NO! I LOVE COOLEY!'

    Gay, Gay Marriage, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Politics, SCOTUS, Student Loans, Supreme Court

    Morning Docket: 08.01.14

    * Since October Term 2013 came to an end, people have changed their views about the Supreme Court. Conservatives think it’s more conservative, and liberals think it’s less liberal. Funny how that works. [Pew Research Center]

    * “If a U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage looks inevitable, perhaps it is.” Given how quickly lower courts are issuing marriage equality victories, it’s only a matter of time before we’ll have a SCOTUS case to follow. [Bloomberg]

    * Pre-law students still care about law school pedigree — as they rightfully should. Sure, scholarships are great and all, but attending a school where you’ll have a prayer of getting a job after graduation is even greater. [National Law Journal]

    * Speaking of pedigree, there’s a new law school ranking in town, and Yale isn’t even in the Top 5. If that doesn’t smack of legitimacy, then we don’t know what does. We’re rolling our eyes here. [InsideCounsel]

    * Cooley Law’s Ann Arbor campus may close, and students who go to the school are reportedly “pretty devastated.” Stop crying and take advantage of your loan discharge opportunities, you dopes. [MLive.com]

    0 Comments / / Aug 1, 2014 at 9:13 AM
  • trademark

    Barack Obama, Basketball, Intellectual Property, Job Searches, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Patents, Politics, Trademarks, Trusts and Estates

    Morning Docket: 07.31.14

    * “We’re in uncharted waters.” Following a split vote down party lines, the House of Representatives authorized Speaker Boehner to move ahead with his lawsuit against President Obama. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * “Vultures! Don’t take our pound of flesh.” Despite last-minute settlement talks, it seems Argentina has defaulted on its debt for the second time in 13 years. Oopsie! [DealBook / New York Times]

    * The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has added 19 additional schools to its law school clinic certification pilot program. IP is hot right now, so congrats if your school made the cut. [USPTO.gov]

    * What are some of the pros of working before going to law school? Well, if you can’t get a job after you graduate, you can go back to your old field, so that’s a plus. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News]

    * California probate attorneys’ hearts were all aflutter following Shelly Sterling’s win against her husband, specifically because of the new precedents the Clippers case left in its wake. [National Law Journal]

    1 Comment / / Jul 31, 2014 at 9:16 AM
  • Say farewell to Cooley Law -- just kidding, it'll always be Cooley.

    5th Circuit, Abortion, American Bar Association / ABA, Anthony Kennedy, Biglaw, Constitutional Law, Gay Marriage, Law Schools, Money, Morning Docket, SCOTUS, Supreme Court

    Morning Docket: 07.30.14

    * When it comes to bans on same-sex marriage, for Justice Anthony Kennedy, animus is a “doctrinal silver bullet” — the fact that there was no animus involved in the enactment of many of them may be problematic at the high court. [New York Times]

    * Relying on some obscure Supreme Court precedent, the Fifth Circuit saved Mississippi’s lone abortion clinic after striking down as unconstitutional a state law that would have required doctors to have hospital admitting privileges. [National Law Journal]

    * Given the situation over at Bingham McCutchen, people are starting to wonder about whether all the guaranteed contracts to members of merger partner McKee Nelson’s partnership helped to shape the firm’s current financial plight. [Am Law Daily]

    * Hot on the heels of Cooley Law canceling its first-year class at Ann Arbor and announcing tentative plans to close the campus, the ABA approved the school’s affiliation with Western Michigan. Yay? [MLive.com]

    * Here’s one way to become a lawyer without racking up massive amounts of debt: you could try to “read” the law like Abraham Lincoln, and work as a law firm apprentice. That sounds delightful. [New York Times]

    2 Comments / / Jul 30, 2014 at 8:55 AM
  • Image via Getty

    2nd Circuit, 9/11, Bankruptcy, Basketball, Biglaw, Deaths, Gay Marriage, Howrey LLP, Lateral Moves, Law Professors, Marijuana, Money, Morning Docket, Religion, Weddings

    Morning Docket: 07.29.14

    * The Second Circuit ruled that the World Trade Center Cross may remain on display in the September 11 Memorial and Museum. Apologies, atheists, but it’s a “genuine historical artifact.” [New York Daily News]

    * Howrey going to get money back when judges keep tossing unfinished business claims like they’re yesterday’s trash? We’ll see if such claims will be laid to rest after a hearing later today. [Am Law Daily]

    * Paul Weiss had a good get this week, with Citigroup’s deputy general counsel leaving the bank to join the firm — which coincidentally has served as the bank’s outside counsel for two decades. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * North Carolina, a state that adopted a ban on same-sex marriage in 2012, said it will no longer defend its law in the wake of the Fourth Circuit’s ruling as to a similar ban in Virginia. Hooray! [Los Angeles Times]

    * If you missed it, a judge issued a preliminary ruling against Donald Sterling, meaning that the sale of the L.A. Clippers may proceed. Don’t worry, his attorney says this is just “one stage of a long war.” [CNN]

    * It seems that “weed-infused weddings” are a hot commodity in states where the drug has been legalized. Sorry, it may be better than an open bar, but it doesn’t seem like a very classy thing to do. [Boston.com]

    * Cheryl Hanna, Vermont Law School professor and praised legal analyst, RIP. [Burlington Free Press]

    2 Comments / / Jul 29, 2014 at 8:23 AM
  • gradenfreude

    Dan Markel, Deaths, Federal Judges, Gay Marriage, Guns / Firearms, Job Searches, Law Professors, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Murder, State Judges

    Morning Docket: 07.28.14

    * “[T]he nation’s last explicit ban of the right to bear arms has bitten the dust.” On Saturday, a federal judge said D.C. couldn’t ban the carrying of guns in public for self-defense. [Legal Times]

    * Late on Friday, Florida’s ban on same-sex marriage was tossed by a state judge, making it latest in a string of major legal victories for marriage equality. Congrats, Floridians! [Bloomberg]

    * There’s been some new updates in the case of Dan Markel, the young FSU Law professor who was murdered in his own home. We’ll have more on the details police released later today. [CNN]

    * “I’ve come to the realization I’d really like to have a paycheck at some point.” Ouch. Law school graduates in Florida are starting to feel the pain of a very tough job market, and they’re not too happy about the situation. [Tampa Bay Times]

    * “[T]hey treat us like step children instead of adoptees.” A group of Texas Wesleyan Law graduates have filed a complaint (in vain?) with the ABA in the pursuit of new diplomas from Texas A&M Law. [WFAA 8]

    9 Comments / / Jul 28, 2014 at 8:43 AM
  • Alec Baldwin was such a stud.

    Animal Law, Barack Obama, Biglaw, Celebrities, Health Care / Medicine, Insurance, John Edwards, Morning Docket, Politics, State Judges, Tax Law

    Morning Docket: 07.25.14

    * “I don’t care if it’s legal, it’s wrong.” President Obama is pointing the finger at companies using cross-border mergers to avoid U.S. taxes, and he wants to put an end to corporate tax inversions. [Bloomberg]

    * Thomas Christina of Ogletree Deakins is the lawyer behind the recent circuit split on Obamacare’s state versus federal health insurance subsidies. Blame him or praise him, it’s up to you. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * “I think I missed being in the courtroom more than I missed politics.” John Edwards, acquitted in 2012, is making court appearances again, but this time as a lawyer, not as a defendant. [Am Law Daily]

    * A lawyer from Georgia hunts alligators in his spare time, and keeps the taxidermied head of one he caught right on his desk. He says it’s “a great conversation piece,” but that’s a pretty nasty paperweight. Eww. [Daily Report via ABA Journal]

    * In a face-off with Alec Baldwin, a judge asked the actor to apologize. The combative Baldwin said he’d rather pay a fine, but if he can “[b]e a good boy,” his biking charge will be dropped. [New York Daily News]

    0 Comments / / Jul 25, 2014 at 9:18 AM
  • Kid Rock

    Bankruptcy, Biglaw, Celebrities, Dewey & LeBoeuf, Drugs, Facebook, Gay, Labor / Employment, Marijuana, Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 07.23.14

    * Yesterday afternoon, two of D&L’s former executives quietly settled a clawback suit filed by Alan Jacobs, the firm’s bankruptcy trustee. Dewey know how much Messrs. Sanders and DiCarmine had to pay the piper? [WSJ Law Blog]

    * GrayRobinson is the latest firm to hop aboard the medical marijuana bandwagon by launching its own regulated products practice group. Lawyers will soon puff, puff, pass around those lovely billable hours. [Daily Business Review]

    * Pain at the pump apparently extends to this gas giant’s résumé dumps. A suit alleging bias in ExxonMobil’s hiring moves forward thanks to the Illinois Human Rights Commission. [Washington Blade]

    * Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg will be testifying against Paul Ceglia in court to prove that the alleged huckster faked a contract that claimed he owned more than half the company. Like. [Bloomberg]

    * It seems that Kid Rock has been subpoenaed over a glass sex toy that was supposedly given to him by a former Insane Clown Posse employee. Kid Rock is probably thrilled to be in the news again. [MLive.com]

    1 Comment / / Jul 23, 2014 at 9:01 AM
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Celebrities, Department of Justice, Kids, Lateral Moves, Law Schools, LSAT, Morning Docket, Munger Tolles & Olson, Solicitor General's Office, Trials, Trusts and Estates

    Morning Docket: 07.22.14

    * From Big Government to Biglaw: Our congratulations go out to Benjamin Horwich, most recently of the Office of the Solicitor General at the U.S. Department of Justice, as he joins Munger Tolles & Olson as counsel. Nice work. [Munger Tolles & Olson]

    * The number of law school applicants took a nose dive for the fourth year in a row, this time by 8 percent, summarily crushing the hopes and dreams of law deans praying for a change of their otherwise most dismal fortunes. [National Law Journal]

    * Considering the latest slump in applicants, whether a law school evaluates your average LSAT score or highest LSAT score matters little. Admissions officers will jump for joy that you have a pulse. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News]

    * “You don’t have to convict on every count to have a win.” Azamat Tazhayakov, friend of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was convicted of obstruction and conspiracy to obstruct justice. [Bloomberg]

    * Per documents filed by a lawyer appointed to represent Philip Seymour Hoffman’s children, the actor didn’t set aside money for them because he didn’t want them to become “trust fund kids.” [New York Post]

    1 Comment / / Jul 22, 2014 at 9:05 AM
  • The LSAT's fate come August?

    American Bar Association / ABA, Biglaw, Bill Clinton, Dan Markel, Deaths, Document Review, Health Care / Medicine, Law Professors, Law Schools, LSAT, Morning Docket, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, SCOTUS, Supreme Court, Technology, Tobacco / Smoking, Trials

    Morning Docket: 07.21.14

    * NO, NO, NO, NOTORIOUS! Previously unpublished documents from the Clinton White House have been released, and it looks like Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was criticized for her “laconic” nature. Not cool, Bill. [Legal Times]

    * Document review jobs aren’t going anywhere, folks. Exhibit A: Winston & Strawn’s e-discovery practice is bringing in the big bucks, earning the firm more than $20 million in revenue last year. [Capital Business / Washington Post]

    * More lawyers are being treated for substance abuse for drugs and alcohol than ever before. In fact, a founding partner of Farella Braun + Martel, one of California’s largest firms, was once a “functioning alcoholic.” [Am Law Daily]

    * A Florida jury apparently set on “sending a message” to tobacco companies awarded $23.6 billion in punitive damages to a chain smoker’s widow against RJ Reynolds. That was a costly message. [Reuters]

    * June 2014 marked the fewest people who sat for the LSAT in 14 years, but it may get even lower if a new ABA proposal which would allow the test to be waived for 10% of students passes. [Central Florida Future]

    * Dan Markel, FSU Law prof, criminal law theorist, and PrawfsBlawg founder, RIP. [Tallahassee Democrat]

    1 Comment / / Jul 21, 2014 at 9:07 AM
  • The old ball and chain.

    Bankruptcy, Biglaw, California, Death Penalty, Federal Judges, Gay Marriage, Law Firm Mergers, Law Schools, Morning Docket, SCOTUS, State Judges, Student Loans, Supreme Court

    Morning Docket: 07.18.14

    * Now that a federal judge has classified California’s death penalty as unconstitutional, it’s only a matter of time before the issue reaches the Supreme Court. We have a feeling the justices will likely roll their eyes. [National Law Journal]

    * Word on the street is that Bingham McCutchen has got the urge to merge, and has apparently spoken to a handful of potential partners over the course of the past three months. We’ll have more on these developments later. [Reuters]

    * As it turns out, it was neither Wachtell Lipton nor Jenner & Block that managed to snag the coveted GM litigation oversight job. Nice work, Quinn Emanuel — you’re considered a “well-respected outside law firm.” [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Congrats, Flori-duh, you did something right. A state court judge has ruled that Florida’s ban on gay marriage violated the U.S. Constitution in the latest post-Windsor victory for equality. Yay! [Bloomberg]

    * Thanks to their hundreds of thousands of dollars in law school debt, many graduates are considering declaring bankruptcy. Too bad most won’t be able to get their loans discharged. [Connecticut Law Tribune]

    6 Comments / / Jul 18, 2014 at 9:03 AM
  • Amal Alamuddin

    California, Celebrities, Cellphones, Constitutional Law, Death Penalty, General Counsel, In-House Counsel, Law Schools, Military / Military Law, Money, Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 07.17.14

    * There’s a very good chance that if you go in-house, you could wind up making more money than even the wealthiest of Biglaw partners. But how much more? Take a look at the latest GC compensation survey. [Corporate Counsel]

    * GM has hired outside counsel to review the way the company handles its litigation practices. Since we’re not sure which, we’ll take bets on whether this “well-respected outside law firm” is Wachtell or Jenner & Block. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * A federal judge in California ruled that the state’s death penalty was unconstitutional. A defendant living with the “slight possibility of death” violates the Eighth Amendment. Damn appeals! [New York Times]

    * “He hasn’t been charged with anything at the moment and we’ll deal with the charges when they’re filed.” Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl hired Yale Law lecturer Eugene R. Fidell, a military law expert (and husband of noted legal journalist Linda Greenhouse). [New Haven Register]

    * We all know that George Clooney’s fiancée, Amal Alamuddin, has both beauty and brains. What we didn’t know is that she poses for incredibly embarrassing pictures, just like the rest of us. [Us Weekly]

    * How do Americans feel about the Supreme Court’s recent cellphone privacy ruling, Riley v. California? [Digital Constitution / Microsoft]

    3 Comments / / Jul 17, 2014 at 9:16 AM
  • J.D. = Just Debt

    Celebrities, Gay, Job Searches, Law Schools, Minority Issues, Money, Morning Docket, Music, Religion, Student Loans

    Morning Docket: 07.16.14

    * Per the latest Gallup study, Republican approval of SCOTUS is up, while Democratic approval is down. Gee, considering how the biggest cases of OT 2013 went down, no one should be terribly surprised by this news. [New York Times]

    * Will our leader make the grade? Law profs wrote a strongly worded letter to President Obama, asking that he not include a religious exemption in his executive order prohibiting anti-gay bias in federal contractor hiring. [National Law Journal]

    * Hey guys, there’s a new report out that contains some pretty shocking information about the realities of life after law school. Seriously, who knew that would-be lawyers were poor? Oh wait, we did. [CNN Money]

    * Washington & Lee recently surrendered its Confederate flags to appease its black student population. Here’s an interview with Brandon Hicks, the law student behind the historic movement. [Huffington Post]

    * “Fret for your latte, and fret for your lawsuit.” Tool hasn’t put out a new album in in almost a decade, and it’s all because of one pesky little lawsuit filed way back in 2007 that just won’t go away. [Rolling Stone]

    6 Comments / / Jul 16, 2014 at 9:04 AM

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