Divorce Train Wrecks
A divorce battle between two Biglaw associates gets ugly — very ugly.
* Baker & McKenzie was dethroned by DLA Piper as the the Biglaw king of gross revenue. The firm is blaming its poor performance — a 4.3 percent drop — on “currency fluctuations.” Better luck on snatching back glory next year. [Am Law Daily; Big Law Business / Bloomberg]
* It’s hard out here for a pimp with an allegedly small peen: Terrence Howard’s divorce settlement was overturned by a judge after evidence was brought forward to suggest the actor was coerced into signing it. Apparently his ex was blackmailing him over the size of his manhood. [ABC News]
* There’s a new
sheriffjudge in town, and he’s cleaning up the Ferguson, Missouri, courts. His first order of business was to wipe out all arrest warrants issued before December 31, 2014, in the wake of the Michael Brown police shooting last August. [Reuters]
* Dean Philip Weiser of Colorado Law has announced that he’ll be stepping down from his position in July 2016. He’ll be remembered for keeping costs low and putting asses in seats during a time when it was difficult to do both concurrently. [Denver Business Journal]
* “On one level I give them kudos for playing hide the ball.” Gibson Dunn is fighting a subpoena issued by defense attorneys for computer metadata related to its Bridgegate report that cleared New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie of all wrongdoing. [Bergen Record]
Life is short. Get a divorce.
Dad is not always wrong.
* FYI, it may be a “nine-week job interview—for both sides,” but summer associates hardly have room to complain when they’re being wined, dined, and paid up to $3,000 per week to work at the Biglaw firms where they landed jobs. [Wall Street Journal (sub. req.)]
* Hot take alert: Per our favorite (and sometimes controversial) blogging jurist, Richard Kopf of the District of Nebraska, “Senator Ted Cruz is not fit to be President” because he wants to allow voters to boot SCOTUS justices. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Maria Mitousis, the divorce lawyer who was seriously injured after a bomb allegedly mailed to her by a client’s ex-husband exploded in her office, says she’ll be back to work ASAP. Her hand got blown off and she still wants to bill. What’s your excuse? [CBC News]
* Former Galveston County (Texas) Court-at-Law Judge Christopher Dupuy was recently arrested and charged with two counts of online harassment after he allegedly created sex ads featuring his exes. He sounds like a real winner, y’all. [Crimesider / CBS News]
* This prospective law student got a 173 on the LSAT and wants to know whether it would be advisable to retake the exam. Are you actually kidding me with this? You’ll get in almost anywhere with a 173 and a pulse. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News & World Report]
Be careful out there, lawyers; we bet you didn’t know your job could be so dangerous.
* Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner are getting divorced — even she couldn’t stand the thought of him being Batman. Celebrity divorces don’t come cheap, and you know what that must mean: high-powered lawyers and even higher rates for their billable hours! [CNN]
* “[H]ow young would you go…I’d do 5[,] [b]ut 0-12 is hot.” Well, that’s absolutely disgusting. Matthew Gigot, an attorney who does doc review in the D.C. area, was charged in a child pornography case for sexual performance using a minor. [FOX 5 DC]
* The main line of defense as of late in the Dewey trial for the former head honchos of this failed firm is that everyone sends out embarrassing — and potentially incriminating — emails from time to time. We know all abput that here at Above the Law. [WSJ Law Blog]
* “Put down the bong, throw out the vaporizer and lose the rolling papers.” If you’re hoping to land a job at any federal agency any time in the near future, then you better quit your toking as soon as possible, even if it’s legal in your state. [New York Times]
* Here’s some sad news for women who are interested in taking home their apparently delicious and nutritious placentas to feast upon after their children are born in hospitals: it’s only completely legal in three states — Hawaii, Oregon, and Texas. [The Stir]
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A lawyer representing herself has a fool for a client. But a really entertained audience.
* With Valentine’s Day nearly upon us, and many lawyers waiting to pop the big question this weekend, we must let our readers know that nothing could possibly be more romantic than a prenuptial agreement. Eww, just kidding. [Total Return / Wall Street Journal]
* On the opposite side of the spectrum, if you can’t stand your spouse anymore, you can stay for a Valentine’s weekend at the Divorce Hotel in upstate New York. For the low, low price of $5,000, you can check in married and check out single. [New York Post]
* “Usually, people have told me, when you’re stopped, the officer says, ‘License and registration.’” Here’s a Supreme Court fun fact for you to keep up your sleeve: Chief Justice John Roberts has never been pulled over by a police officer in his life. [Slate]
* According to a recent study conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, lawyers are the exception to the rule when it comes to pay growth stagnation. “Top earners gonna earn” — by 1,450 percent compared to the competition. [Wonkblog / Washington Post]
* There’s a warrant out for Punxsutawney Phil, the groundhog who brought this wintry hell upon the Northeast. “He told several people that winter would last 6 more weeks, however he failed to disclose that it would consist of mountains of snow!” [CBS Boston]
* “I will be myself. I will be Loretta Lynch.” During the first day of her Senate Judiciary hearing, our would-be attorney general was cool, calm, and collected while delivering the news that she’s not Eric Holder. [National Law Journal]
* Just how many retweets does it take for a law student at Oklahoma Law to convince Steven Adams of the Oklahoma City Thunder to go with her to law school prom (i.e., Barrister’s Ball)? Apparently only 1K. Come on, be her date, Steve! [FanSided]
* After being arrested on bribery charges, New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has decided to take a leave of absence from personal injury firm Weitz & Luxenberg — and to think, he was originally hired “to bring prestige to the firm.” [WSJ Law Blog]
* “Chess trains you to always think of the worst-case scenario. A lot of the time, that’s what lawyers are hired to do—to think, ‘What’s the worst case and how can I manage it?’” The youngest Debevoise associate moonlights as a chess champ. [Am Law Daily]
* Sue Ann Arnall, the ex-wife of billionaire Harold Hamm who first rejected a $975 million alimony check earlier this month and later cashed it, still thinks she should be able to appeal her divorce decree. This woman’s got some real chutzpah. [Bloomberg]
* Per New York City’s gossip rag of record, an alleged “bed-pooping, cokehead” banker and his “alcoholic” wife were called out by the judge in their divorce case for involving their kids in a “horrible fiasco.” [New York Post]
* For time infinitum, the structure of Wachtell Lipton’s billing was “cloaked in mystery.” Thanks to an errant fee agreement, however, we have an idea of what the prestigious firm charges for its “distinctive service.” [Am Law Daily]
* Hey guys, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, and there’s a newly single Bachelorette on the prowl. The lovely Andi Dorfman called off her reality TV stunt engagement. Perhaps the ADA will return to prosecuting cases? [E! Online via TODAY]
* “We are in the end game on the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.” Later today, we may find out whether the Supreme Court intends to take up any of the same-sex marriage disputes that have been presented to it this Term. [Bloomberg]
* It looks like the UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law is starting an LL.M. program in gambling law. Step right up, because we’re now taking bets to see whether this degree will be advantageous for its graduates in the job market. [National Law Journal]
* California’s foie gras ban was recently struck down by a judge as an illegal encroachment upon the federal government’s regulatory domain. Please remember that while it’s delicious… it’s supposedly only “for assholes.” [San Francisco Chronicle]
Although poetry may be the best way to make passive-aggressive complaints about your case, the next time you’re considering writing a four-page, 60-line email riffing on a classic holiday poem, you might want to consider your audience.
* When Loretta Lynch still worked at Hogan & Hartson (now known as Hogan Lovells thanks to a merger), her colleagues described her as a warm person without “a political bone in her body.” That said, best of luck to her in D.C. [National Law Journal]
* The D.C. Circuit upheld the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive opt-out plan for religious employers, but since “[t]he court is wrong,” we can count on a at least a few organizations that’ll refuse to comply. Gee, thanks a lot, Obama. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Some call the latest Biglaw tie-up “law-firm Darwinism,” but hey, “[i]t’s not like [Bingham’s] a wounded gazelle and we are pouncing on them,” says a too coy Morgan Lewis lawyer. [Philadelphia Inquirer]
* Fashion law may be a $985 billion global industry, but only five law school courses on the topic exist in the U.S. Why? “There’s no defensible reason except that fashion is perceived as a frivolous subject.” [AFP]
* This woman plans to appeal a $1 billion divorce settlement award because it’s not “fair and equitable.” In her defense, she did get a very small percentage of her ex-husband’s multibillion-dollar wealth. [People]
* Wage and hour laws have never been so sexy: Thanks to this court ruling, Rick’s Cabaret is going to have to make it rain on thousands of strippers to the tune of more than $10 million. [New York Times]
Unfortunately, as with so many who die leaving a reasonably hefty estate, Goldsmith’s legacy is locked up in court, and in the court of public opinion.
Yes, this is a puppet. Promoting a law firm. Specifically, Professor Hans von Puppet.
The divorce started as amicably as one could reasonably hope for, but as distrust bubbled, the split escalated from a perfunctory proceeding into contentious brawl.