• old lady lawyer elderly woman grandmother grandma laptop computer

    Bar Exams, California, Old People

    Old Lady Lawyer: Our Shared Nightmare — The Bar Exam

    Have a bar exam horror story? Please share it.

    20 Comments / / Nov 25, 2015 at 1:04 PM
  • San Francisco skyline and Bay Bridge at sunset, California

    Bar Exams, California

    California Bar Exam Results Reveal Worst Pass Rate In Nearly 30 Years — But It’s Not All Bad News

    Less than half of all test-takers passed the exam. Yikes!

    59 Comments / / Nov 20, 2015 at 11:58 PM
  • I don't want to see

    Federal Judges, Social Media, Technology

    A Federal Judge And His Twitter Account: A Cautionary Tale

    Do you think this judge crossed the line in his use of social media?

    13 Comments / / Nov 18, 2015 at 4:48 PM
  • arrogant lawyer arrogance RF

  • Keila Ravelo

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.13.15

    * Steven Metro, an ex-managing clerk at Simpson Thacher who was accused of passing insider info about mergers and other business transactions to his law school buddy in a $5.6 million insider trading scheme, has pleaded guilty. He faces up to 20 years in prison. [Reuters]

    * Remember Keila Ravelo, the Willkie Farr partner who allegedly stole millions from that firm and her prior firm, Hunton & Williams? It turns out her involvement in the $5.7 billion MasterCard/Visa antitrust settlement could ultimately become its kiss of death. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * Chief Judge Morrison England (E.D. Cal.) says he and his colleagues are incredibly overworked, sometimes putting in more than 80 hours per week. It’s too bad it doesn’t make a difference — the court is at a “crisis point” in its backlog of cases. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Last summer, a federal judge ruled the death penalty was unconstitutional in California because an appeals process with the “slight possibility of death” was cruel and unusual. Here’s a real shocker: the Ninth Circuit overturned the decision. [New York Times]

    * Embattled Pennsylvania AG Kathleen Kane is well past the point of having 99 problems, but there’s no end in sight. Former prosecutors have filed suit against her, alleging she retaliated against them for exposing her alleged criminal misdeeds. [Tribune-Review]

    38 Comments / / Nov 13, 2015 at 8:59 AM
  • Goldsmith, Ernest


    Judge Calls Out California Over Secretive Practices

    What is California hiding from the public?

    24 Comments / / Nov 10, 2015 at 3:30 PM
  • Adnan Syed

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.09.15

    * On Friday night, Judge Julie Kocurek, the presiding felony judge for Travis County, Texas, was shot outside her home. Her condition has been upgraded from critical to stable, and some say that she may have been a target of retaliation. We may have more on this terrible news later today. [American-Statesman]

    * Apparently it takes podcast stardom to get a post-conviction hearing these days: A Maryland judge has agreed to reopen the case against Adnan Syed, the man whose murder conviction received an in-depth look during the first season of “Serial.” [CNN]

    * Per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the legal sector added 700 jobs in October, bringing the industry to its highest level of employment all year. Don’t get too excited — we’re still a long way from reaching pre-recession era glory. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]

    * It took almost 10 years without putting anyone to death, but California has finally proposed a one-drug alternative to its three-drug lethal injection protocol after it was struck down as unconstitutional in 2006. Was this worth the wait? [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Following a much-deserved public excoriation from our very own Elie Mystal, Mizzou Law’s Student Bar Association has decided to do away with its absurd social media policy. In a media statement, the SBA even agreed that it was “poorly written.” [Huffington Post]

    35 Comments / / Nov 9, 2015 at 8:58 AM
  • Hilary Bricken

    Department of Justice, Marijuana

    DOJ Gets (Majorly) Smoked In Federal Court

    What does this case mean for medical marijuana defendants?

    / Oct 26, 2015 at 4:20 PM
  • Green California Road Sign with Dramatic Clouds and Sky.

    California, Lateral Moves, Sponsored Content

    West Coast Employment Practices Continue To Dominate The Market

    Labor and employment opportunities appear stronger than ever in California. For those looking for security in good times and bad, there may very well be no better practice.

    / Oct 23, 2015 at 4:15 PM
  • Here you go, Northwestern!

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 10.23.15

    * Any day Cadwalader can avoid damages in a huge, multimillion-dollar malpractice case is a great day. Yesterday, the New York Court of Appeals dismissed a never-ending suit filed against the firm by a former client over a failed commercial mortgage-backed securitization. Phew! [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]

    * Say hello to Northwestern Pritzker Law: In case you missed it, Northwestern Law recently received a $100 million donation, the largest single gift ever made to a law school. For that much money, you’re damn right the school has a new name. [Chicago Tribune]

    * This must’ve been a huge blow to his ego… U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara had to dismiss insider trading charges against seven defendants thanks to a Second Circuit decision that made it harder to prosecute certain financial crimes. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Charleston Law fired back against professors who sued the school by saying in its answer it wouldn’t be in such dire straits if they hadn’t “sabotaged the transfer of the school to InfiLaw.” Take that back, they did a good deed. [Charleston Regional Business Journal]

    * “Sorry, not sorry, narcs,” says Judge Breyer. Earlier this week, a California judge informed the DEA that it needed to stop harshing medical marijuana patients’ mellows by shutting down medical pot dispensaries that were operating within state laws. [TIME]

    41 Comments / / Oct 23, 2015 at 8:58 AM
  • Jay Z (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 10.22.15

    * Brush that dirt off your shoulder: Jay-Z may have 99 problems, but this copyright lawsuit about his song “Big Pimpin'” is no longer one of them. The suit filed against the rap mogul in 2007 was dismissed on standing grounds, but the plaintiff says he plans to appeal. [Los Angeles Times]

    * When it comes to the death penalty, Justice Antonin Scalia says that it “wouldn’t surprise [him]” if the Supreme Court were to strike it down as unconstitutional. It seems that a capital punishment case could become the next SCOTUS blockbuster. [CBS Minnesota]

    * No one is a fan of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s in-house court system, and legislation to give financial defendants the right to opt out will be introduced in Congress later this week. Would you rather face trial before a federal judge or jury? [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Earlier this week, a state-court judge brought a live grenade to the courthouse, but only because he wanted to have it properly disposed of by police. The jurist currently remains unidentified, which is a good thing, because this is pretty embarrassing. [CBS Los Angeles]

    * Jurors in New York are paid $40 per day for their service, so you may be wondering how the confused members of the jury in the Dewey & LeBoeuf (mis)trial were able to survive on only $2,920 after five months spent in the courtroom. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    62 Comments / / Oct 22, 2015 at 8:44 AM
  • old lady lawyer elderly woman grandmother grandma laptop computer

    Old People

    Old Lady Lawyer: Competency Is Not A Number

    Just as ageism knows no age, neither does competency.

    30 Comments / / Oct 21, 2015 at 12:58 PM
  • Hilary Bricken

    California, Marijuana

    An Overview Of California’s New (And Improved) Medical Marijuana Laws

    California is going to have one of the most comprehensive and complicated medical marijuana licensing regimes in the country, as marijuana law columnist Hilary Bricken explains.

    / Oct 12, 2015 at 4:20 PM
  • Matt Jackson

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 10.12.15

    Ed. note: In honor of Columbus Day (and Canadian Thanksgiving), Above the Law will be on a reduced publication schedule today. We will be back in full force tomorrow. Stay tuned for today’s news!

    * Who is Amy Berman Jackson? If you’ve been watching Jeopardy! lately, you’ve probably been trying to figure out which law firm reigning champion Matt Jackson works for as a paralegal. In the meantime, it’s worth noting that his mother is a D.D.C. federal judge. [Washington Post]

    * Another SCOTUS term is upon us, and while Chief Justice Roberts tends to cast his votes on the issues through a conservative lens, there’s talk that he could be a “wildcard.” Hmm, perhaps Justice Kennedy will have a pal to swing with this year. [MSNBC]

    * Choose your path wisely: Bloomberg Markets released its ranking of the 50 most influential people last week, and not a single practicing lawyer made the cut. Attorneys who chose career alternatives, however, made a killing. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * Marcel Aubut, who recently resigned in disgrace from his position as Canadian Olympic Committee president after allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate touching came to light, has also decided to leave his Biglaw firm and seek counseling. [NBC Sports]

    * Late last week, California adopted an exacting digital privacy law that will require police to get warrants to access all manner of electronic information, from emails to texts to metadata. Please thank the Golden State for keeping your sexts safe. [WSJ Law Blog]

    52 Comments / / Oct 12, 2015 at 8:57 AM
  • Decorative Scales of Justice in the Courtroom


    New Law Cracking Down On Prosecutorial Misconduct — But Does It Do Enough?

    California has had enough of shady prosecutors and is taking action.

    17 Comments / / Oct 9, 2015 at 2:58 PM
  • layoff group

    Biglaw, Staff Layoffs

    Uh-Oh! Super-Rich Biglaw Firm Is Trimming Its Ranks

    Which law firm is trying to reduce headcount this time?

    110 Comments / / Oct 9, 2015 at 1:01 PM
  • Kim Davis

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 10.06.15

    * While we’re loath to continue giving this woman airtime, it turns out that infamous Kentucky clerk Kim Davis’s law firm, Liberty Counsel, was recently declared a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. This fits the overall narrative here quite nicely, don’t you think? [Salon]

    * After 12 days of deliberation, the jury in the criminal trial of Dewey & LeBoeuf’s former execs has shown no signs of reaching a verdict, but instead, signs of exhaustion. In fact, one juror needed medical attention because she deliberated too hard. [Am Law Daily]

    * This seems to be a common phrase lately: law firm mergers are breaking records again. Altman Weil says more firms announced mergers in the first three quarters of 2015 than in the first three quarters of any year in almost a decade. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg]

    * “I was left to reflect on what I would want in the face of my own death.” Thanks to Governor Jerry Brown, California is now the fifth state to legalize physician-assisted suicide. The End of Life Option Act will take effect sometime in 2016. [Los Angeles Times]

    * If you’re an undergraduate student who’s planning to go to law school, then you better be building relevant lawyering skills. Master the art of bullsh*tting before you graduate and you’ll be ahead of the game. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News & World Report]

    105 Comments / / Oct 6, 2015 at 8:56 AM
  • video game

    Elena Kagan, Stephen Breyer, Supreme Court

    This Is What Happens When Two Supreme Court Justices Play Video Games

    Justice Kagan dishes on what it’s like to play video games with Justice Breyer.

    27 Comments / / Sep 18, 2015 at 3:01 PM