American Bar Association / ABA

  • Trombone

    Non-Sequiturs

    Non-Sequiturs: 07.23.15

    * Remember The Spread Love Band? They’re the street band that played near Skadden’s D.C. office. Skadden hated them so much they tried to convince the Secret Service to shoo them. Now they’re playing the Kennedy Center. It’s like the old joke, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” except instead of “practice,” the answer is “enrage a bunch of uptight lawyers.” [Washingtonian]

    * Important request of the ABA: just say no to your task force on legal education financing, chaired by a member of the Infilaw board. [The Lawyer Bubble]

    * What’s the best big city for law school grads? [Adjunct Law Prof Blog]

    * Aaaand what’s the best small city for law school grads? [Adjunct Law Prof Blog]

    * Lawyer fined around $30K for blowing an email review. It’s OK, it might not really be legal work anymore. [Press Gazette]

    * Rental car companies tried to deduct collision damage on their taxes. That didn’t work out for them. [Tax Prof Blog]

    * Justice Willett discusses social media and the judiciary. [Washington Times]

    * Judge tried to interfere in the kitty abusing case against his son. Some real-life Itchy the Mouse stuff. [Law360 (sub. req.)]

    * R.I.P. Professor and Associate Dean Christopher M. Fairman. [Ohio State Law]

    7 Comments / / Jul 23, 2015 at 4:59 PM
  • failed

    Minority Issues, Racism

    Why I Failed As A Prosecutor

    Sometimes justice is a tricky concept.

    114 Comments / / Jul 21, 2015 at 2:30 PM
  • Congrats! Welcome to law school!

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 07.20.15

    * “I would hope that we’ve already hit the bottom.” America’s legal educators and admissions deans are wishing, hoping, and praying that the upcoming school year will be the last year that merely having a pulse is a prerequisite for law school admission. [National Law Journal]

    * Bankruptcy court, here we come: We all know that right now, exorbitant law school debt can’t be discharged in bankruptcy, but judges have started to rally in favor of student debtors, noting that the Brunner test is simply incompatible with today’s high tuition costs. [New York Times]

    * “A professional education will never be cheap,” and the ABA has finally decided to give the appearance of caring about the average graduates of private law schools with six figures of loans. Enhanced financial counseling for all! [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * Indiana Tech Law School won’t be appealing its denial of accreditation by the American Bar Association. Before you get too excited about a law school accepting failure and throwing in the towel, it seems that the school is just going to reapply instead. [KPC News]

    * “[O]ne’s face may determine one’s fate, at least in the judicial domain.” Per a new study, the more untrustworthy a criminal defendant looks, the more likely it is that he’ll receive a harsher sentence. Boy, Dewey know defendants in need of a makeover. [WSJ Law Blog]

    26 Comments / / Jul 20, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • '[W]hen you play the game of thrones, you win or you die.'

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 07.15.15

    * After closing arguments in the Dark Knight movie massacre trial, the case against accused shooter James Holmes now goes to a jury. He’s facing 165 criminal charges, and if found guilty, he may be sentenced to death. [NBC News]

    * A federal magistrate judge ordered the NCAA to pay almost $46 million in legal fees and costs to lawyers representing student-athletes in their antitrust suit against the organization, and he even likened the case to Game of Thrones in his decision. This is a monumental win. [Reuters]

    * Last night, SCOTUS denied a stay of execution for Mississippi death row inmate David Zink, even though his lawyers cited Justice Breyer’s recent death penalty dissent in Glossip with high hopes that the Court would act in their client’s favor. [National Law Journal]

    * For your information, the gender gap in the legal profession extends far beyond pay and partnership prospects. According to a recent study by the American Bar Association, about two-thirds of all attorneys who appeared in federal civil trials were men [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Going to law school in an underserved community that isn’t overflowing with lawyers is great for résumés, because the University of New Mexico School of Law is seriously bucking the trend of its students having difficulty finding jobs after graduation. [KOB 4]

    6 Comments / / Jul 15, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • Coming to a law school near you?

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 07.06.15

    * It’s time to start shutting down law schools, but this clearly isn’t something that the American Bar Association is ready to act on. After all, new schools keep popping up, and the ABA keeps accrediting them for reasons beyond understanding. [Bloomberg Business]

    * At the end of a landmark Term at the Supreme Court, some presidential candidates are fanning the flames of voters’ fears. Linda Greenhouse asks, “[W]hat, exactly, are people supposed to be afraid of now? A same-sex married couple with affordable health insurance?” [New York Times]

    * Eric Holder will return to Covington & Burling, the Biglaw firm from whence he came, and he’ll be there “until [he] decide[s] [he’s] not going to be a lawyer anymore.” This crazy guy says he’d even turn down a SCOTUS nom to continue working there. [Am Law Daily]

    * Congrats to Skadden, the firm that ranked numero uno in worldwide deals according to Bloomberg’s quarterly M&A league tables. Davis Polk finished $93 billion behind that, but hopefully the bonuses will be just as sweet this winter. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * If you’re planning to enter law school at the end of the summer — especially if you’re a gunner in training — there’s no better way to spend your last months of freedom than to read one (or all of) these law prof-recommended books and papers. [Washington Post]

    7 Comments / / Jul 6, 2015 at 8:56 AM
  • Silly partners.

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.24.15

    * Partners at this law firm tried a threesome, but it didn’t exactly work out as expected, so now they’re scaling it back to just one at a time. (And by this, we of course mean that Porter Scott’s three co-managing partners plan was a no-go.) [Sacramento Business Journal]

    * More than 40 class-action suits have been filed since the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, with many litigants alleging that they were “duped” into its purchase. Maybe one of them will pack a better punch than the so-called “Fight of the Century.” [National Law Journal]

    * Just because one Biglaw firm went under, in part, because of its brand-spanking new administrative hub, that doesn’t mean your firm shouldn’t consider opening one. The risk might be worth the reward of saving millions in expenses. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * Concordia Law launched a media campaign to attract students, touting the fact that it’s been kind of provisionally approved by the ABA as its selling point. It’s new slogan is likely “Meh, we’re good enough for the ABA, so we’re good enough for you.” [Idaho Statesman]

    * Here’s some good news for the people who are actually considering taking the D.C. bar exam instead of just waiving in like the rest of civilized society: the D.C. Court of Appeals will finally allow you to type the essay portion of the exam on your laptops. [Legal Times]

    23 Comments / / Jun 24, 2015 at 9:03 AM
  • See ya, Judge.

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.19.15

    * Ouch! The Florida Supreme Court just unanimously told a lower court judge to STFU and GTFO. Judge Laura Watson, who was elected to her position in 2012, was summarily ousted from the bench for shady conduct that took place before her judgeship commenced. [Sun Sentinel]

    * The ABA postponed making a decision on whether it’ll approve a merger between Hamline Law and William Mitchell Law. Not to worry, everything will be okay. Come on, as if the ABA would let a failing law school completely crash and burn. [MPR News]

    * We mentioned this week that Hank Greenberg won his A.I.G. bailout suit, but we didn’t get around to the part where Davis Polk got quite the judicial spanking from an “irritated” judge — and the firm wasn’t even named as a defendant. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Uh oh. It looks like Ellen Pao just got “powed.” Judge Harold Kahn has tentatively ruled that Pao must pay about $276,000 in trials costs to Kleiner Perkins. (Special thanks go out to ATL commenter Paul Harvey for this clever little quip.) [Digits / Wall Street Journal]

    * Micah Green, a prominent lobbyist at Squire Patton Boggs, is headed for greener pastures at Steptoe. He’s the latest rainmaker to leave, which makes us wonder if the firm will be satisfied with only being able to make it drizzle. [PowerPost / Washington Post]

    19 Comments / / Jun 19, 2015 at 9:02 AM
  • growing tax

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.10.15

    * The number of law school applicants and applications continues to plummet, with applicants down by 2.5 percent and the volume of applications down by 4.6 percent since last year. For the love of God, students are staying away for a reason. Do some research, people. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Lawyers may be thanking their lucky stars for loan repayment programs like IBR and PAYE, but when their cancellation of debt income comes back to bite them in the ass in the form of a “tax bomb” as early as 2032, they’re going to be crying for mercy. [TaxProf Blog]

    * If the Supreme Court rules against same-sex marriage, life could devolve into chaos for gay and lesbian couples. Sure, SCOTUS could do that, or “a giant meteor could fall on [your] head in the next five seconds,” but one is more likely to happen than the other. [AP]

    * You had one job, Dean Cercone… ONE JOB! After recommending against accreditation back in May, the ABA convened this week to officially deny provisional accreditation to Indiana Tech Law. Its handful of students will be so disappointed. [Indiana Lawyer]

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert pleaded not guilty in his sex scandal cover-up case and was released on $4,500 bond. Interestingly enough, the judge has volunteered to remove himself due to some potential issues over his impartiality. [New York Times]

    7 Comments / / Jun 10, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • police crime tape

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.09.15

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert, most recently of Dickstein Shapiro, finally found a lawyer to represent him in his sex scandal cover-up. His new lawyer may not be “the brightest guy in the world,” but he does do white-collar defense at Sidley Austin, so there you go. [National Law Journal]

    * Oopsie! A Tennessee lawyer is currently being held on $15 million bail because he allegedly solicited an undercover police officer to kill his estranged wife. He even gave the guy a “down payment for the murder.” We wonder how much he thought his spouse was worth dead. [Nashville Sun Times]

    * In times like these, you’re going to need a great network in order to get a job after law school, and some schools are superior to others in that department. Check and see if your alma mater made the grade on this ranking. [Business Insider via GraduatePrograms.com]

    * Concordia Law just received the gift that keeps on giving from the ABA — provisional accreditation. The news came just in time for its nine remaining third-year students to graduate and take the bar exam (everyone else transferred out). [Idaho Statesman]

    * Kalief Browder, a man used as an example of our broken justice system, was sent to Riker’s Island when he was 16 years old. He never had a trial, and was never convicted, but still spent three years in jail. He recently committed suicide. RIP. [New York Times]

    18 Comments / / Jun 9, 2015 at 8:55 AM
  • ArrowGoingDown

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.05.15

    * Per Dean David Herring, applications have tanked at New Mexico Law (ATL #18) — we’re talking a 30% drop over the past five years. Wait, no, nevermind, the school’s assistant admissions dean says things are great. Oops? [Albuquerque Journal; Albuquerque Business First]

    * Gov. Chris Christie thought he was through with the Bridgegate scandal, but oh, how wrong he was. His former deputy chief of staff’s lawyers want to subpoena Gibson Dunn’s work product, but the firm claims it doesn’t exist. [Talking Points Memo]

    * ¡Ay dios mío! This week, a New York appellate court ruled that Cesar Vargas, an undocumented immigrant, should be eligible to practice law in the state, completely sidestepping federal law and a Justice Department brief to the contrary. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Concordia Law is getting a second chance at obtaining provisional accreditation from the ABA. This would’ve been way more helpful before the majority of its third-year students transferred to an accredited school so they could take the bar exam. [Idaho Statesman]

    * The ex-GC of Zara has filed a discrimination suit against the fashion retailer, claiming that he was fired because he’s Jewish, American, and gay. Apparently senior executives used slurs as ugly as the company’s clothes. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]

    12 Comments / / Jun 5, 2015 at 9:01 AM
  • Game of Loans

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.04.15

    * If you’re having trouble making payments on your law school debt, don’t fall prey to a loan-relief scam. You may already be six figures in the hole, but you should take this quiz to see if you’re about to lose your shirt — yet again. [U.S. News & World Report]

    * For the second time in two years, the ABA will reconsider whether law students should be able to receive pay for credit-bearing externships. Come on already, give these people a chance to make a buck before they graduate. [National Law Journal]

    * Here’s an important memo for Judge Mark Fuller of the Middle District of Alabama: Just so you know, if you don’t resign on August 1 as promised, the House Judiciary Committee is probably going to bring impeachment proceedings against you. HTH. [Daily Report]

    * It’s not a merger (yet), they’re just “exploring synergies”: Albany Law School and SUNY Albany will affiliate in order to help students from both schools. Check out the memo, complete with an exploding fellowship offer for new students. [Albany Business Review]

    * Vice is suing a small business named Virtue Marketing, alleging trademark infringement. Apparently the media company’s in-house marketing agency is also called Virtue. Hey, Vice, just change the name to Greed and you’ll be set. [THR, Esq. / Hollywood Reporter]

    12 Comments / / Jun 4, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • Sepp Blatter (photo via Agência Brasil)

    Non-Sequiturs

    Non-Sequiturs: 06.02.15

    * Just days after a hard-fought reelection campaign, Sepp Blatter is resigning his post as President of FIFA. I wonder whose indictment is coming out next… [The Guardian]

    * The ABA is going to investigate the much-maligned Charleston School of Law. [SC Lawyers Weekly]

    * If you fancy yourself a trivia master — or just want some free drinks and food — sign up for ATL’s Summer Trivia Showdown. Use the code “PLComp” to get in for free. [Above the Law]

    * A New Jersey judge gagged the Bergen Dispatch, leading to this incisive response from the paper and the judge quietly vacating her own order. As Walter Sobchak taught us, “The Supreme Court has roundly rejected prior restraint.” [Boing Boing]

    * Not to diminish the serious electoral problems of the U.S., but check out how out of whack representation is in the United Kingdom. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]

    * If you’re seeking a prosanity fix, a parent filed a federal lawsuit against local, state and federal education officials contending that the theory of evolution is functionally a religion and therefore teaching it is a violation of his kid’s rights. [Charleston Daily Mail]

    * Seyfarth Shaw’s Stephen Poor explains why he joined Twitter. He talks about innovation and leadership, but it was all about following @aplusk. [Bloomberg BNA / Big Law Business]

    10 Comments / / Jun 2, 2015 at 4:57 PM
  • Aww, the ABA wants you back, LSAT.

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.05.15

    * Ever argued about weed before SCOTUS? Ever argued about weed before SCOTUS… while high? The Supreme Court asked Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. to weigh in on the marijuana border wars suit filed by Oklahoma and Nebraska against Colorado. [Denver Post]

    * Well, that was quick! After enacting this rule just last year, the ABA now wants to put a stop to law schools using an exception that would allow up to 10 percent of their entering classes to consist of students admitted without having taken the LSAT. [ABA Journal]

    * Landon Thomas, a 2014 NYU Law graduate, has been missing for more than a week. He was last seen in Harlem on April 27. His friends and family have set up a Facebook page to aid in the search. If you have any information, please call the police. [DNAinfo]

    * Corinthian Colleges, a higher education system that ran an employment falsification scam that was eerily similar to what law schools were once doing, has gone belly up, and Biglaw firms are swooping in like vultures to get in on the action. [Am Law Daily]

    * After being convicted on 30 federal charges last month, Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev showed some emotion for the first time during the penalty phase of his trial, where he was seen wiping a tear while his aunt sobbed on the stand. [TIME]

    22 Comments / / May 5, 2015 at 8:56 AM
  • Marilyn J. Mosby (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.04.15

    * This past Friday, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby dropped the gavel on the police officers who were allegedly involved in the death of Freddie Gray. Here are seven interesting facts you need to know about this “certified badass.” [New York Magazine]

    * Which law school placed the most graduates from the class of 2014 into full-time, long-term jobs where bar passage was required that weren’t school-funded? Stop. Before you say Columbia Law, you’re wrong for the first time in years. [National Law Journal]

    * Indiana Tech, the little law school that couldn’t, received a recommendation against accreditation from the ABA on its first try. Not to worry, because law school officials say this is just a “minor setback” for all 59 of its students. ::sad trombone:: [News-Sentinel]

    * “You are not doing that here.” Tough titty: Kelly Noe, one of the Ohio women challenging the same-sex marriage ban in her state before the Supreme Court, was yelled at by a security guard for breastfeeding her baby outside the high court. [Cincinnati Enquirer]

    * If you’re hoping to register a “smutty” or “immoral” trademark, then you may be able to get what you want if this Federal Circuit opinion comes down your way. We’ll soon see if a ban on these offensive trademarks violates the First Amendment. [Corporate Counsel]

    29 Comments / / May 4, 2015 at 8:58 AM
  • Man Holding "Hire Me!"

    Job Searches, Law Schools, Media and Journalism

    What Doesn’t The Media Get About The State Of Law Hiring?

    Columnist Renwei Chung offers his thoughts on the latest job data from the ABA.

    10 Comments / / May 1, 2015 at 12:14 PM
  • Jeena Cho

    Minority Issues, Technology

    The ABA TECHSHOW: A White Man Affair

    The ABA TECHSHOW has a white people problem. There is very little racial diversity.

    24 Comments / / Apr 17, 2015 at 2:46 PM
  • student loan debt law school loans

    Law Schools, Money, Student Loans

    Good Grief: These Law School ‘Debt Per Job’ Numbers Are Ugly

    For every job obtained by a graduate of these law schools, an extraordinary debt burden has been accrued.

    37 Comments / / Apr 8, 2015 at 3:45 PM
  • Calling all Chicagoans.

    Non-Sequiturs

    Non-Sequiturs: 04.06.15

    * The law prof who sent anal-bead porn to her students is making headlines beyond the legal media. [Inside Higher Ed; Total Frat Move]

    * You’ve been served — via Facebook. How do you “Like” them apples? [New York Daily News]

    * Making a federal — or at least state — case out of teaching yoga to schoolchildren. [ATL Redline]

    * Bad idea: taking someone’s identity and accepting money on their behalf. (Or: the dangers of launching a startup without legal advice.) [Associate’s Mind]

    * Also a bad idea (if the allegations are true, that is): a men-only golf retreat at a large law firm. [ABA Journal]

    * “Sperm Donor Scandal Lawsuit: How One Man with Schizophrenia Allegedly Fathered 36 Children.” [People]

    * Getting revenge on a revenge-porn magnate: an 18-year sentence for Kevin Christopher Bollaert. [Los Angeles Times]

    * How can healthcare startups protect their intellectual property? [MedCity News]

    * Debt-saddled law students love free stuff — so how about free membership in the ABA? [American Bar Association]

    * In addition to our April 23 reception, I’ll also be doing an event on April 25 for Supreme Ambitions (affiliate link), to which you are all most cordially invited. [Seminary Co-Op Bookstore; Facebook]

    19 Comments / / Apr 6, 2015 at 5:06 PM