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Supremes The Supremes Above the Law blog.jpgBaby, baby… where did our love your brain go? From Ms. JD:

County Circuit Judge W. Kennedy Boone called three black female lawyers “the Supremes” in court. He also advised a defendant to get “an experienced male attorney.”

Generously, Boone has recused himself from further cases tried by the three lawyers.

Maryland judge calls trio of black female lawyers ‘the Supremes,’ recommends client get a male lawyer [Ms. JD]
Judge Reprimanded for Racial Remarks [AP]

email e-mail small message microsoft outlook Above the Law.JPGBut it didn’t result in a front-page New York Times story on the Zyprexa settlement talks. Apparently reporter Alex Berenson had independent knowledge of the settlement negotiations, and this knowledge was the basis for his story. Details over at Drug and Device Law.
In our brief and breezy post, we never claimed that the email error triggered the NYT story. But we did link to other sources that mistakenly suggested this. So if you read the original post, be sure to read this correction / clarification.
Update: Actually, the correction may itself require correction (or at least clarification). See here.
It Wasn’t Pepper’s Fault! Berenson Confirms [Drug and Device Law]
Earlier: ATL Practice Pointer: When Emailing Super-Sensitive Settlement Information, Double Check the Recipient List

Chris Hook Christopher Hook DOJ Pride gay Above the Law blog.jpgNot everyone likes Attorney General Michael Mukasey. At Boston College Law School, students are protesting Dean John Garvey’s decision to invite Attorney General Mukasey to deliver the school’s 2008 Commencement address. See here (Facebook group: “Waterboarding IS Torture”), here, and here.
Why are liberals so unhappy about Mukasey? We’d expect the AG to receive a warmer reception, in light of this happy news, which made the pages of the Washington Post:

Five years after a gay advocacy group was told that it could no longer use the e-mail, bulletin boards and meeting rooms at the Justice Department, Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey has reversed that decision and issued a revised equal-employment-opportunity policy barring discrimination against any group.

Mukasey informed leaders of DOJ Pride last week that the department would give it the same rights as all other DOJ employee organizations, said the group’s president, Chris Hook. In a statement, Mukasey said the department will “foster an environment in which diversity is valued, understood and sought” and maintain “an environment that’s free of discrimination.”

Writes a Department of Justice source:

Finally — now I can celebrate “Pride on Ice” anytime I want! Michael Mukasey gets two snaps in a circle for this decision!

In another sign of libertinism running rampant in the halls of justice, Lady Justice’s magnificent metal breastses are no longer covered up, as they were during the repressive Ashcroft regime (during which female DOJ lawyers had to wear burqas to court). But the credit for the breast-baring belongs to Alberto Gonzales.
Attorney General Mukasey Reverses Anti-Gay Policy at Justice Dept [Towleroad: A Site With Homosexual Tendencies]
Attorney General Reverses Curbs On Gay Group at Justice Department [Washington Post]
Boston College Law School Community Members Protests Mukasey [ACS Blog]
Mukasey Invitation Prompts the Question: “What has BC Law become?” [Eagleionline]

Peter Hafer public defender Doug Crickmer Above the Law blog.jpgSometimes it really sucks to be a public defender. From the Lexington Herald-Leader:

A defendant unhappy with his court-appointed attorney punched the lawyer as they stood before a judge Monday.

Peter Hafer, 30, of Cynthiana, assaulted his attorney Doug Crickmer while Crickmer was speaking before Judge Rob Johnson in Scott County Circuit Court.

As if the lousy pay and overwhelming caseloads weren’t bad enough.

Court Bailiff Jim Traylor said Hafer hit Crickmer three or four times in the face and stomach, sending the attorney to a hospital for treatment. Traylor said Hafer would likely face charges, but none had been filed yesterday afternoon.

Attorneys will surely line up to defend Hafer in that case.
Check out the video clip via this article. The assault takes place around the 7:10 mark — it’s some pretty crazy s**t. As the Herald-Leader caption dryly notes, “A punch to the jaw occurs at 7:06 on the counter, followed by moaning from the victim (off-camera).”
Client Decks Counsel, Gets New Lawyer [ABA Journal]
Defendant assaults his attorney [Lexington Herald-Leader]

cancel canceled cancelled plans Above the Law blog.jpgIn last week’s ATL / Lateral Link survey, we asked you about how often you cancelled your personal plans for work.
We received 633 responses, and, by and large, you should just stop making personal plans. Thirty-six percent of respondents had cancelled plans “too many times to count” last year, while another 17% had cancelled plans six to ten times. Eighteen percent had broken plans three to five times, and sixteen percent had cancelled plans only once or twice. Only thirteen percent of respondents never cancelled personal plans over work last year.
Associates in New York and Los Angeles were the most frequent date-breakers, with 78% of respondents in each city cancelling plans at least three to five times, and over 40% cancelling plans too many times to count. Washington, DC and the Bay Area were close behind. Associates in Atlanta, Boston, and Texas were more likely to have personal lives, with Chicago somewhere in the middle.
Most respondents, 84%, simply missed dinner, and about 70% of associates have worked through the weekend. Fifty-six percent of respondents blew off parties, and about half missed family dates. Around forty percent of associates missed dates, TV, or holidays, and around a third cancelled vacations. One quarter of associates reported that they have skipped sex to work, but only eleven percent said they had missed a religious event. Associates in Chicago were the most likely to miss dinner, while Bostonians were the most likely to cancel a date — but the least likely to miss sex.
Why all the social de-scheduling? Sixty-five percent of respondents have put their personal plans on hold because a partner asked them to finish something. Another sixty percent just decided they had things they needed to get done. Thirty-eight percent of respondents said a client told them to do it. Twelve percent needed the hours. Five and a half percent of associates just wanted to impress someone. A little over half of respondents thought the work was not important enough to justify breaking their plans.
These numbers were dramatically different for the respondents who had actually blown off sex to work. Ninety percent of these respondents were asked to finish something by a partner (at the office). Sixty percent were asked by a client. Almost a quarter thought they needed the hours, while eleven percent skipped their personal plans because they “wanted to impress people.”

associate bonus watch 2007 law firm Above the Law blog.jpgWe’ve received a number of inquiries about bonuses at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher (especially in their New York office). This reminded us that we never did a full-blown bonus post about GDC. We merely noted, back in this post, that in the firm’s Los Angeles office, they appeared to be paying the standard year-end bonuses (but no special bonuses).
We’re not even 100 percent sure of that. And we also don’t know what they did in New York. We hear — through the grapevine, and not confirmed — that first-years in New York got the standard $35K year-end bonus, and that the class of 2007 associates received a prorated year-end bonus.
So please help us get to the bottom of things. Consider this an open thread for discussion of Gibson Dunn bonuses (similar to yesterday’s thread on Jones Day, which generated — and continues to generate — vigorous commentary). If you have info on GDC bonuses, please share what you know in the comments.
Update: One source reports:

Gibson’s New York office received both the regular and special bonuses. They were paid in one shot on December 20th. The L.A. office did not receive the special bonus.

Also, speaking of Gibson Dunn, we have bonus (non-bonus) content for you: a cute departure email, sent out late last month. Check it out, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Associate Bonus Watch: What’s Been Done at Gibson Dunn?
(Plus a funny farewell email)”

Legal Eagle Wedding Watch NYT wedding announcements Above the Law.jpgYes, LEWW hears the howls of protest from our readers about the weeks we skipped recently. We’ll do a makeup post soon, we promise. The weddings pages have been such a wasteland lately that it’s been hard to pull together the kind of legal and nuptial excellence you’ve come to expect here. And it’s crushing our spirit.
Take this week. The NYT featured just seven weddings total, with only two LEWW contenders and one Ivy degree (from U. Penn). Here are the two finalists:

1.) Robin Rosenthal and Richard Rothfeld

2.) Erin Conroy and Thomas Welling Jr.

More about these newlyweds, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Legal Eagle Wedding Watch 2.3: Sterling Reputation”

Abercrombie Fitch A&F ad poster advertisement Above the Law blog.jpg* It ain’t over until Candy Crowley sings. Neither Clinton nor Obama lands a knockout punch on Super Tuesday, ensuring that the race for the Democratic presidential nomination will go on for quite some time. [New York Times; Washington Post]
* On the Republican side — of less interest to ATL, since there’s only one J.D. in that race (Mitt Romney), who never really practiced — John McCain cements his front-runner status. [New York Times; Washington Post]
* You can’t handle the truth! Okay, maybe you can. CIA Director Michael Hayden testifies to the Senate that waterboarding was used on three Al Qaeda operatives, back in 2002 and 2003. [Los Angeles Times via How Appealing; New York Times]
* A victory for free expression — or, at least, displays of hot, half-naked men (pictured). Virginia Beach plans to drop obscenity charges filed against an Abercrombie & Fitch store manager for a racy display. [Virginian-Pilot]
* Georgia loses federal water case; Alabama and Florida prevail. [New York Times]
* Waiting for Godot a ruling in a challenge to a federal anti-abortion law — first brought back in January 2005. [San Francisco Chronicle via How Appealing]
* Meet Dan Slater, the new lead writer of the Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog. [WSJ Law Blog]

  • 06 Feb 2008 at 9:40 AM
  • Uncategorized

Clerkship Bonus Watch: Schulte Roth & Zabel

Schulte Roth Zabel LLP logo SRZ Above the Law blog.jpgThere’s no major movement to report on the base salary front, but clerkship bonuses continue to climb. The latest firm to raise its clerkship bonus, from $15K to $50K (or $70K for two clerkships): Schulte Roth & Zabel. From their website:

Upon arrival at the Firm directly following an eligible one-year clerkship, associates receive a clerkship bonus of $50,000. Those who join us directly following an eligible two-year clerkship (or two successive eligible one-year clerkships) will receive a bonus of $70,000.

If you are aware of clerkship bonus news that we haven’t previously reported — you can check what we’ve covered before by doing a site search — please email us. Thanks.
Careers: Judicial Clerks [Schulte Roth & Zabel]
(Gavel bang: commenter.)

Barack Obama small Senator Barack Hussein Obama Above the Law blog.JPGThat’s the subject of our column in this week’s New York Observer.
Today, of course, is Super Tuesday. And based on early returns, it appears that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) is having a sensational evening. Maybe this could have been predicted, based on how many lawyers we spoke with tried to claim that their own firms were the Biglaw version of Barack — and how many lawyers tried to avoid having their firms tagged as Hillary.
You can read the full column, in which we pick the Biglaw embodiments of everyone from Hillary Clinton to Ron Paul, by clicking here.
Update (1:00 AM): First, it seems that the early returns may have been misleading. Barack Obama had a strong evening, but not a “sensational” one (since he lost California, New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts).
Second, we have some egg on our face with respect to Mike Huckabee, whom we treat dismissively in the column. We reported and wrote the piece well before Huckabee won a surprisingly high number of states tonight.
N.Y. Law Firms Wanna be Just Like Obama [New York Observer]

Barack Obama small Senator Barack Hussein Obama Above the Law blog.JPGThat’s the subject of our column in this week’s New York Observer.
Today, of course, is Super Tuesday. And based on early returns, it appears that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) is having a sensational evening. Maybe this could have been predicted, based on how many lawyers we spoke with tried to claim that their own firms were the Biglaw version of Barack — and how many lawyers tried to avoid having their firms tagged as Hillary.
You can read the full column, in which we pick the Biglaw embodiments of everyone from Hillary Clinton to Ron Paul, by clicking here.
Update (1:00 AM): First, it seems that the early returns may have been misleading. Barack Obama had a strong evening, but not a “sensational” one (since he lost California, New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts).
Second, we have some egg on our face with respect to Mike Huckabee, whom we treat dismissively in the column. We reported and wrote the piece well before Huckabee won a surprisingly high number of states tonight.
N.Y. Law Firms Wanna be Just Like Obama [New York Observer]

Opposite of Love Julie Buxbaum Above the Law blog.jpg* Lawyers, enough with the animal ads already. The latest offender: Day Pitney. [copyranter]
* If you’re a Biglaw associate dreaming of making your escape via book deal, here’s some inspiration for you. [New York Daily News]
* Celebrity law professors support Obama. [Lessig Blog]
* But staffers at a prominent Mexican restaurant here in D.C. support Hillary. ¡Olé! [Huffington Post]

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