* John H. Ray III, the African American ex-associate at Ropes & Gray who claimed the elite firm discriminated against him, loses in court again, this time before the First Circuit. [National Law Journal]
* Vester Lee Flanagan aka Bryce Williams, the Virginia television broadcaster who killed two colleagues on-air before killing himself, was also no stranger to the legal system: he filed multiple lawsuits alleging racial discrimination. [New York Times]
* Why are in-house lawyers more likely than their non-attorney corporate colleagues to fall for phishing emails? [ABA Journal]
* Dewey know when the prosecution will rest in this seemingly endless trial? Probably today. [Wall Street Journal]
* State judges get nasty with each other in Oregon. [Oregonian]
* Federal judges around the country are advocating for a second look at how defendants get sentenced. [New York Times]
* The Dilly in Philly: Paul Clement v. Ted Olson. [Am Law Litigation Daily]
* A T14 law graduate turned “traveling artist” gets charged with criminal sexual assault in Chicago. [Chicago Tribune]
* Speaking of sexual assault laws, Emily Bazelon explains how the St. Paul’s Rape Case shows why these laws must change. [New York Times]
* Linda Hirshman, author of the forthcoming book Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World (affiliate link), explains how Justices O’Connor, Ginsburg, and Sotomayor brought wisdom to SCOTUS (but where’s the love for Justice Kagan?). [Slate via How Appealing]
We have bars and pubs for alcohol, wine, and spirits, and the equivalent for marijuana should not be a hard sell as legalization gains momentum — but not anytime soon.
With its critical impact on the world economy and global trade, privacy legislation in Asia has been extremely active in the last several years. A recently released report, Privacy Laws in Asia, written by Cynthia Rich of Morrison & Foerster LLP for Bloomberg BNA, analyzes commonalities and differences in the privacy and data security requirements in countries including Australia, India, Hong Kong and more.
This report gives you at-a-glance access to a side-by-side chart comparing four key compliance areas, a country-by-country review of the differences and special characteristics in the law, and explanations of the common elements of the privacy laws in 11 jurisdictions.
* Hot on the heels of the news that the majority of students enrolled in California’s
“failure factories”unaccredited law schools drop out before graduation, legislators are pushing for the state bar to do something about it before even more prospective students are conned. [Los Angeles Times]
* Robots will be coming for your jobs more quickly now thanks to the largest law firm in the world. Dentons invested an untold sum in Ross, an app that will inevitably replace first-year lawyers by utilizing super computer Watson’s artificial intelligence to perform legal research. [Globe and Mail]
* Slowly but surely, the legal industry is making a comeback in terms of headcount. Sure, the entire profession is only employing 3,500 more people now than it was at this time last year (sorry about that, law school grads), but it’s still an improvement. [Am Law Daily]
* Just because it doesn’t look like the Securities and Exchange Commission has been doing anything doesn’t mean that lawyers at the agency have been twiddling their thumbs. They’ve got some major things in the works, they swear. [DealBook / New York Times]
* “I wonder how it feels to save the life of a mass murderer? Good job.” In a shocking verdict, convicted Colorado movie theater shooter James Holmes was sentenced to life in prison. All it took was one holdout juror to take the death penalty off the table. [Reuters]
* Her dad’s the ringleader, he calls the shots; she’s like a firecracker, she makes it hot: Since “everything is working perfectly” under pop star Britney Spears’s conservatorship — which has been in effect for the past seven years — it’ll likely stay that way indefinitely. [Us Weekly]
* Well, that was fun while it lasted. The ABA did away with its year-old LSAT exemption rule in record time. Law schools will only have until 2017 to lard up classes with students who haven’t taken the exam. Good luck and Godspeed. [National Law Journal via TaxProf Blog]
* Simpson Thacher isn’t the only Biglaw firm that allegedly blew it when it came to turning hundreds of General Motors’ secured creditors into unsecured creditors. Mayer Brown is also facing twin class-action suits for this $1.5 billion boo-boo. [Crain’s Chicago Business]
* Good news, everyone! The ABA approved a merger between Rutgers Law-Camden and Rutgers Law-Newark, and we’re going to look at this in a positive light because theoretically speaking, there’s now one less law school out there. [MyCentralJersey.com]
* “Are Law Schools Skewing Job Placement Numbers?” In a word, yes. Not to be a complete
pessimistrealist, but come on, you know most school-funded positions exist solely to prop up any given law school’s less-than-pleasing job statistics. [Bloomberg]
* When you’ve taken the lives of so many, no one cares about your sad life story. A Colorado jury inched closer to inflicting the death penalty upon convicted movie theater shooter James Holmes in the second phase of his trial’s penalty portion. [New York Times]
How big is the Colorado marijuana market?
If you’re interested in becoming an attorney in the burgeoning marijuana industry, here are some things you need to know before you dive in.
* You cannot make this stuff up. The curious case of Rachel Dolezal, the former leader of the NAACP Spokane, Washington branch who resigned in disgrace after her parents made the revelation that Dolezal was white, gets weirder. The Smoking Gun has unearthed a lawsuit Dolezal filed (then known as Rachel Moore) against Howard University for, inter alia, racial discrimination. Yup, Dolezal claimed she just couldn’t make it as a white women. [The Smoking Gun]
* Fresh off of the tragedy of Kalief Browder, the man who was held in Rikers for three years awaiting trial for stealing a backpack before the charges were dismissed, comes the case of Carlos Montero. Montero, arrested as a teenager, has been in Rikers for SEVEN YEARS waiting for his day in court. [New York Post]
* I mean, they’ve only worked together for 21 years and 10 months. Justice Antonin Scalia apologized from the bench yesterday after calling Justice Ginsburg Justice Goldberg. The apology seemed sincere, but Scalia played it cool with a quip about Justice Arthur Goldberg. [Supreme Court Brief]
* The Colorado Supreme Court ruled yesterday that an employer can fire an employee for medical marijuana use, legal under state law, since the use is still illegal under federal statutes. [Huffington Post]
* If your company finds themselves the victim of trade secret theft, is there an alternative to costly civil litigation? There just might be if you get the police involved. [Corporate Counsel]
It is anyone’s guess as to how SCOTUS will handle this potentially critical case of first-impression, and most involved with the marijuana industry are rightfully nervous.
* Manny Pacquiao is headed to court after a pair of Nevada fans sued him for failing to disclose his torn rotator cuff before entering the ring. They feel this was dishonest, but Manny is a politician, so… [Bloomberg Business]
* Trial of man who knocked out his lawyer delayed after he… attacked his new lawyer. [Post Star]
* Tort reform advocates talk a big game, but the harms they try to cure are mostly non-existent. [LFC 360]
* Speaking of Colorado, a prisoner there serving a life sentence wrote Above the Law the other day explaining that his pro bono lawyer had died and asking us for legal help. We don’t do that kind of work, but if you’re an interested criminal defense lawyer in Colorado, let us know.
It has long been the case in Hong Kong that most UK law firms and a very small minority of US law firms have three month notice periods for their US associates built into their employment contracts. But until about 18 months ago it was not common for any firm to enforce a three month notice period when a US associate left solo[…]
We are pleased to invite you to an evening of cocktails and conversation focusing on the many ins and outs of marijuana law. The event will take place in Denver, Colorado, on June 16 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
* Following NBC’s announcement of his six-month suspension without pay, Brian Williams turned to Robert Barnett of Williams & Connolly to save his career. The pair met when they were Supreme Court clerks — oopsie, we guess that’s another misrepresentation. [Am Law Daily]
* “We weren’t about to ask them to risk life and limb to get in.” As Boston braces for yet another snowstorm, Biglaw firms are trying to figure out how they can continue to operate. Punxsutawney Phil is keeping the wheels of justice from turning. [National Law Journal]
* The Supreme Court has granted Colorado an extension to respond to a lawsuit filed by Nebraska and Oklahoma which claims that its decision to legalize marijuana was unconstitutional. Puff, puff, pass this cert vote, SCOTUS. [Cannabist / Denver Post]
* Regulators! Mount up… and then run away to your new Biglaw firms. Preet Bharara’s S.D.N.Y. roster is constantly changing thanks to the golden handcuffs large law firms offer, but Bharara still “love[s] all [his] children equally.” [DealBook / New York Times]
* David Messerschmitt, the DLA Piper associate who was found dead in a Washington, D.C., hotel room last week, is remembered by his colleagues as “someone so talented and so nice.” There have been no new breaks in his murder investigation. [Legal Times]
Ed. note: Due to the Presidents’ Day holiday, we will be on a reduced publication schedule today. We will still be publishing, but less frequently than usual. We will be back in full force tomorrow.
* The news is in, and it seems that Davis Polk’s financial numbers were at record highs. The firm’s revenue beat the $1 billion mark for the first time ever, and its PPP rose to $3.29 million. No wonder its 2014 bonuses were so awesome! [Am Law Daily]
* Yes, we know that William Mitchell Law and Hamline Law are merging to survive as a result of a quickly disappearing applicant pool. We’d really love to know how many other law schools are considering this as an alternative to closing their doors. [Star Tribune]
* How are Nebraska and Oklahoma, which neighbor Colorado, where marijuana has been legalized, handling the situation? Not well. Their AGs want SCOTUS to rule the weed law in the state where you can get Rocky Mountain High is unconstitutional. [PBS NewsHour]
* Thanks to a recent ABA rule change, schools are beginning to admit students without LSAT scores. One of those schools is Iowa Law (ranked in the top 30 by U.S. News), but those students need to have done really well on other standardized tests. [Daily Iowan]
* “How have I done as a judge today?” “Not bad, but you could do better.” Judge John Hurley had a run-in with an 80-year-old criminal defendant who wouldn’t stop calling him sweetheart. Flip to the next page to see the entertaining video. [NBC 6 South Florida]
* Still looking for a great gift for your assistant? Corporette presents their annual secretary gift guide! [Corporette]
* Associates are super excited about their shiny — but discretionary — bonuses. Note that base pay hasn’t taken a similar leap. Thanks for throwing a wet blanket on the season. [Law and More]
* Who are the new lawyers in Congress? Mike Sacks profiles them. [National Law Journal]
* The law firm trying to kill the internet is Jenner & Block. That’s unfair — the law firm employed by people trying to kill the internet is Jenner & Block. And they’re willing to write a whole letter and make a state Attorney General just sign it! That’s some pull. [The Verge]
* At this special time of year, let’s remember who this season is all about: pagans. [What About Clients?]
* U.S. District Judge Algenon L. Marbley just resigned to settle an ethics probe. Not as a federal judge of course, but as a trustee to THE Ohio State University. The Ohio Ethics Commission raised issues with Judge Marbley serving as a trustee while simultaneously teaching as an adjunct at the law school. [Columbus Dispatch]
* Brad and Da Boyz with a nice little ditty about copyright infringement and fair use. [YouTube]
* Mathew Martoma, the former Harvard law student who fabricated his transcript when applying for clerkships, gets nine years in prison for insider trading. [DealBook / New York Times]
* If Bingham McCutchen moves forward on merger talks with Morgan Lewis, a bunch of Bingham partners might bail. [American Lawyer]
* Congratulations to Judge Jill Pryor, who will join Judge Bill Pryor on the Eleventh Circuit. [Fulton County Daily Report]
* Can you be fired for medical marijuana in Colorado, where the drug is legal even for recreational purposes? [ABA Journal]
* Dewey have some good news for the embattled ex-leaders of the defunct law firm? [New York Law Journal]
* Home Depot is the latest major retailer to be hit by a data breach. [Washington Post]
* The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has been operating without a director for almost a year and a half, and Sen. Orrin Hatch is calling it “inexcusable.” Here’s his politely pissed off letter to President Barack Obama. [Corporate Counsel]
* The chief judge of Florida’s 18th Judicial Circuit Court wants you to know Judge John “I’ll Just Beat Your Ass” Murphy’s behavior “in no way reflects the typical manner that courtrooms are managed … in this circuit.” [WSJ Law Blog]
* Weed has been legal and free flowing in Colorado for months, but now the state is starting to see its dark side. It seems morons who get too high are accidentally killing themselves and others. [New York Times]
* InfiLaw’s bid to purchase Charleston Law reached the pages of the NYT, with a shout-out to one “scrappy website” that referred to the company by its one true name: “diploma mill.” [DealBook / New York Times]
* “Why would you bring black people into the world?” An ex-lover/employee of Donald Sterling is suing him for racial and sexual harassment over lovely comments like this. She’s repped by Gloria Allred. [CNN]
Law schools need to get students through the door somehow, and the whole “we’re good at teaching law” thing is sooo 2013.
Airplanes / Aviation, Antitrust, Attorney Misconduct, Canada, Dewey & LeBoeuf, Federal Judges, Guns / Firearms, Legal Ethics, Morning Docket, Politics, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, S.D.N.Y., SCOTUS, Stephen Breyer, Supreme Court, U.S. Attorneys Offices
* What led the Senate Democrats to go nuclear? [New York Times]
* Should Justice Lori Douglas, she of the infamous porn pictures, step down from the bench? Well, she has 324,100 reasons to stay. [Toronto Star]
* And what about Justice Breyer and Justice Ginsburg — should they leave while the Democrats still control the White House and the Senate? [Washington Post via How Appealing]
* A legal challenge to gun control stumbles — on standing grounds. [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]
* Moral of the story: if you want to threaten opposing counsel, don’t do it over voicemail — unless you want to get censured. [ABA Journal]
* Dewey want more details about the lucrative contracts given to Stephen DiCarmine and Joel Sanders? Most definitely! [Am Law Daily (sub. req.)]
* An interesting peek inside the office of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. The S.D.N.Y.’s boss is a big fan of the Boss. [New York Times]
* Now that the merger between US Airways and American Airlines has been approved, US Airways CEO Doug Parker offers a behind-the-scenes look at his company’s response to the government’s antitrust lawsuit. [Wall Street Journal (sub. req.)]
Which law school has created a matchmaking service to place recent grads in contract attorney jobs?