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Legal%20Eagle%20Wedding%20Watch%20NYT%20wedding%20announcements%20Above%20the%20Law.jpgThe Legal Eagle Wedding Watch is kicking off 2008 with a few leftovers from 2007. But we think you’ll agree that these offerings are worth savoring. These couples have got a little bit of everything: brains, looks, athletic ability, and (something that never goes stale) lots and lots of money.
Here are the contenders:

1.) Ellen Zajac and Teddy Schwarzman
2.) Stephanie Alperin and Eric Biderman
3.) Erica Greenbaum and Mark Gerson
4.) Katherine Van Loon and Jon Steitz

More about these couples, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Legal Eagle Wedding Watch 11.11 – 11.25: Jamaican Me Wealthy”

* Dahlia Lithwick lists the Bush Administration’s 10 dumbest legal arguments of 2007. Number 3 is “Alberto Gonzales.” [Slate]
* Law student/beauty queen charged with kidnapping and torturing ex-boyfriend. [Fox News]
* Murdered Bronco cornerback’s family and teammates await arrests. [MSNBC]
* Banished words list once cited by AZ Supreme Court justice includes “surge,” “organic,” and “it is what it is.” [CNN]
* Rodriguez surprised by WVU lawsuit after bolting for Michigan before contract expiration. [ESPN]

To read ATL posts from December 2007, please click here. Thanks.

Benazir Bhutto Pakistan Above the Law blog.jpg* Rest in peace, Benazir Bhutto; God knows you weren’t able to live in it. [CNN]
* That seems like a pretty good starting point for liability against the zoo. [BBC]
* We don’t know if you know Tom Goldstein, but he’s a pretty big deal. [SCOTUSBlog]
* If he could only apply all of that genius to acquiring some money to actually make a mortgage payment… [WSJ Law Blog]

Superdome Louisiana Superdome New Orleans Hurricane Katrina Above the Law blog.jpg* NRA defends the rights of hurricane victims to shoot at the National Guard keep guns. [AP via How Appealing]
* French “aid” workers sentenced to eight years of hard labor in Chad “orphan” case. [Jurist]
* Apparently if you’re a rapper you can show up at court when you damn well please. [Athens Banner-Herald]
* If you feel guilty about it, at least you can take comfort in the fact that you’ve helped set up an appeal. [CNN]

* Would a holiday search be unreasonable? [Findlaw via How Appealing]
* Is the DOJ passing up a chance to crack down on plaintiff’s lawyers? [WSJ Law Blog]
* Nothing but a G string. [CNN]
* Toby Keith puts his boot in the defendant’s ass in the form of a $2.8 million verdict for his family in a suit over the wrongful death of his father. [AP via Asbury Park Press]

We hope that you’re having a wonderful holiday season and are getting some well-deserved rest — as are we.
As was the case last year, we’ll be on a reduced publication schedule between now and the new year. We’ll return to a normal schedule on Wednesday, January 2, 2008.
To those of you who celebrate it, Merry Christmas! And a happy new year to all.
Rockefeller Center Christmas tree small.jpg

* Top legal stories of 2007. [CNN]
* Stop complaining, civil libertarians. Things could be much worse. [New York Times]
* A leadership vacuum at the Department of Justice. [Washington Post via How Appealing]
* And don’t look to recess appointments to address the problem. [Washington Post]
* A different kind of “pole tax,” which will divert five dollar bills from g-strings to g-coffers. But does it violate the First Amendment? [AP; TaxProf Blog]
* Union members: You’ve Got Mail. Oh wait, you don’t — at least not of the union-related kind. [New York Times]
* Adam Liptak asks whether a “Judicial Hellhole” is in the eye of the beholder. Also, a quote from Dickie Scruggs that maybe he wishes he could take back. [New York Times via WSJ Law Blog]

associate bonus watch 2007 law firm Above the Law blog.jpgLet’s send you into the holiday weekend with some associate bonus news. Here are some law firm bonus announcements that haven’t been previously covered in these pages.
(Firms that previously announced their bonuses, but are being sneaky about the exact amounts and/or the percentage of associates getting them, will be addressed separately. This post is for completely new announcements.)
Some of this news is incomplete. If you can provide more details, please email us. Thanks.
1. Akin Gump (New York): Year-end bonuses, and special bonuses to “those associates and counsel who have performed in accordance with the Firm’s expectations regarding productivity, quality of work and Firm citizenship.” Plus “discretionary merit bonuses” to associates and counsel “who performed in a truly exceptional manner.”
One source at the firm characterizes it as follows:

Full match in NY, with extra bonuses in certain cases (generally to billers over 2400). There has never been an hours requirement, so if past practice is any indicator, anyone not being fired will get it.

Full memo, after the jump.
2. Akin Gump (outside New York): Each associate is allowed to make the case to the firm for a big bonus. A source tells us that this practice of asking associates to write up memos to justify their bonuses started a few years ago. “I wonder how this plays into the current bonus climate, or if anyone else has to do this.”
3. Hogan & Hartson (outside New York): The 2007 bonus memo appears after the jump.
4. Hogan & Hartson (New York): We’ve confirmed the fact that Hogan announced bonuses in New York. It was described to us as a market match. But we haven’t seen a memo or the fine print of the announcement, so we can’t confirm that.
Update: The bonus memo for Hogan & Hartson’s New York office appears after the jump.
5. Vinson & Elkins (New York): “V&E matched the New York market bonus (including this year’s special bonus) for its New York associates, to be paid on January 15, 2008. No memo yet, a voicemail.”
6. Sheppard Mullin: Details after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Associate Bonus Watch: A Pre-Holiday Round-Up”

kid ski skier skis skiing old man sued lawsuit legal action Above the Law blog.jpgThe late Pope John Paul II was an expert skier. Even after he became Pope, and into his 60′s, the Holy Father would slip away from the Vatican for secret ski trips.
So, although we’d like them removed from all interstate highways, we have no problem with oldies on the slopes. This, however, is more troubling:

A 60-year-old man is taking an 8-year-old boy and his dad to court, claiming the boy caused a ski-slope collision that left the older man with a shoulder injury. David J. Pfahler of Allentown, Pa., sued in federal court in Denver, claiming Scott Swimm, then 7, was skiing fast and recklessly when they collided in January, the Vail Daily reported Thursday.

Looks like Pfahler is making a federal case of it (literally). He claims — quite conveniently, for diversity jurisdiction purposes — losses in excess of $75,000.

Scott’s father, Robb Swimm, said that he saw the crash and that Scott was skiing slowly and in control. “It wasn’t a violent collision or anything; Scott just kind of tapped his ski boots,” he said this week.

piggy bank Above the Law blog.jpgScott’s mother, Susan Swimm, said her son weighs 48 pounds and couldn’t have been going more than 10 mph. “Who in the world sues a child?” she said.

Scott: How much do you have in your piggy bank? Pfahler is nearing retirement age — and Social Security doesn’t cover many ski trips.
Man, 60, sues boy, 8, over ski collision [Associated Press]

LSU Tigers continuance motion Above the Law blog.jpgCheck out this continuance motion (PDF), filed yesterday in Louisiana state court. It’s pretty great — especially the footnotes.
Update: As noted in the comments, there is precedent for this motion in Louisiana state court. See Danos v. Avondale Industries, Inc. (unpublished order).
P.S. We’re still accepting applications for the position of ATL “Sports and the Law” columnist (details here). If you’ve already applied, thank you for your application. We are reviewing the many excellent submissions and will announce a decision in the new year. Thanks!
Motion to Continue Trial Due to Conflict with the LSU Tigers National Championship Game
[Joseph Harrell v. Fred Spencer and Imperial Casualty Insurance Company]

We’re still gathering responses to Monday’s survey, which asks you how big your bonus was (or is going to be). At last count, around 1,250 of you had responded, and you can still add your two cents (which is reportedly close to “market” at MWE) over here.
About a third of you still haven’t heard whether your firm will pay bonuses, and that’s clearly a source of deep frustration. But many of you have reported that the wait for your numbers is nowhere near as frustrating as the wait for the actual check. So here’s an open thread for discussion of the subject.
To kick off the discussion, here’s a tip we received from an associate in Washington, DC:

How about a story on mid-sized firms (who recruit from T14 schools) who intentionally wait until February-March to give bonuses? By doing so, they must know that the bulk of lateral openings will have come and gone by the time bonuses are given out — so if an associate waits for his bonus to lateral, it’s too late.

Today’s featured survey, brought to you by ATL and Lateral Link, is on the same topic. It appears below.
In the spirit of delayed gratification, the next batch of results from Monday’s survey will appear after you complete the survey. So far, we’ve revealed the bonus and salary responses from New York, Chicago, and Washington, DC. Yesterday, Los Angeles and San Francisco were neck and neck in the number of responses, while Boston made a proud showing in the comments.
Which city will we reveal next? Fill out the following survey to find out.
Update: This survey is now closed. Click here for the results. See the next batch of results from Monday’s survey after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Featured Job Survey: Bonus Timing and Lateral Moves”

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