Litigation Finance

* 7 tips for surviving the first week of law school. Apparently tip #7 is “proofread numbered lists better.” [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News]

* Lost in the controversy over Trinity Western Law School and bigotry is the fact that it may not really be a good law school. [The Province]

* A conservative UChicago Law student explains why The Book of Mormon signals the fall of society. The essay is almost as funny as the show itself. [Red State]

* A crowdsourcing call for help in getting a “vexatious litigant” order against a particularly troublesome individual. If you’re interested in helping out, check this out. [Popehat]

* Not only is NYC routinely sued, but the city releases helpful reports containing “a bevy of settlement data.” [LFC360 / Legal Funding Central]

* Here are the five jobs that can ruin your social life. I wonder if lawyers are on here…. [Yahoo! Education]

Ed Sohn and Joe Borstein

Ed. note: Please welcome our newest columnists, Ed Sohn and Joe Borstein of Pangea3, who will be writing about the alternative legal services market and the future of the legal profession.

Stop what you’re doing! Take a journey with us to the alternative side of the legal profession for the next few minutes (and through our ongoing column). There is a revolution happening in the practice of law. And you should join it. Or, at the very least, break out the fanny packs and the binoculars and watch. For now, stop your SmartTimer and get off the clock… because as it turns out, reading this is NOT billable. Maybe try your favorite non-billable code, like “professional development.”

Here’s the newsflash: entrepreneurs and innovators are changing the legal profession for the better, having fun, and making real money in the process. The unstoppable forces of modern business — technology, globalization, the need for sleep/food/conjugal visits — are at the gates and climbing the highly defensible ivory tower….

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Ted Olson’s hourly rate.

* While we’re celebrating recently anointed Biglaw partner classes, let’s take a minute to call out the firms that haven’t bestowed the honor upon a single woman this year. Cheers, jerks. [Am Law Daily]

* The results of the NLJ’s Law Firm Billing Survey are out, and lo and behold, one of the top partners in the country is pushing $2,000 an hour for his services. Congrats, Ted! [National Law Journal (sub. req.)]

* Everyone’s buzzing about the federal law clerk who’s been accused of attempted aggravated rape and solicitation of a minor under 13. Don’t let that legendary 4.0 GPA go to waste. [Times-Picayune]

* Congratulations to Gerchen Keller Capital, the litigation finance firm founded by former SCOTUS clerks and hedge-fund alumni, on raising $260 million for its new fund. [DealBook / New York Times]

* Iowa is thinking about allowing law grads to practice ASAP instead of having to pass a bar exam. Paired with its recent tuition cuts, the Hawkeye State is looking better and better. [Des Moines Register]

* If you’re in the unfortunate situation of still having to look for a law job once OCI has ended, then you might want to start considering applying for some of the other law jobs that don’t want you. [Mashable]

* The incarceration of a blogger known for making salacious allegations against federal judges raises First Amendment concerns. [New York Times]

* Johnny Football failed to defeat Alabama on Saturday (though he was gentlemanly enough to keep Bama from covering the spread), but now he has a tougher foe in the IRS. [TaxProf Blog]

* Don’t be that guy who takes naked pictures of your girlfriend. And definitely don’t be that guy who takes naked pictures of his 16-year-old girlfriend while married to the girl’s older sister. In other words, don’t be this lawyer. [Legal Profession Blog]

* Are you an attorney on LinkedIn? Have people been endorsing your legal skills? Congratulations, you’re probably violating an ethical obligation! [IT-Lex]

* Another round-up of people with law degrees who decided to be famous for something other than lawyering. When the list kicks off with Geraldo Rivera and Jerry Springer, you know you’re in for a classy list. [Millington Star]

* One year later, a look at how the Steubenville rape case has affected the town. [Jezebel]

* The world of litigation finance suffers some setbacks as it turns out lawsuits might be the only investment less stable than the Twitter IPO. [Wall Street Journal]

* Time for some more legally themed poetry! This time, let’s get all Edgar Allan Poe up in here. [Poetic Justice]

* Following up on our event in Toronto last week, Bruce MacEwen recapped the evening’s discussion here. [Adam Smith, Esq.]

The legal industry has taken its lumps. At the top, growth is modest at best. At the bottom, law school applications have dropped off dramatically. There are scary book titles like Steven Harper’s The Lawyer Bubble: A Profession in Crisis (affiliate link) to spook the industry even more.

But some are pushing back against the gloom and doom and projecting a bright future ahead. The new hope for Professor Bradley T. Borden is third-party litigation financing (“TPLF”), dropping millions into lawsuits in exchange for a hefty cut at the end so they can party like a champ(erty).

Litigation finance is drawing considerable talent and will certainly change the way law firms and clients do business. But it’s no pathway to rekindle the pre-recession boom.

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If you’re a former Supreme Court clerk, the legal world is your oyster. In the words of one observer, “Supreme Court clerkships have become the Willy Wonka golden tickets of the legal profession. So many top-shelf opportunities within the law, such as tenure-track professorships and jobs in the SG’s office, [are] reserved for members of the Elect.”

If you work at a hedge fund, maybe after a stint at Goldman Sachs or a similarly elite investment bank, you’re the Wall Street version of a SCOTUS clerk — at the top of the field, but with way more money. There aren’t many Lawyerly Lairs out there that cost $60 million (the cost of hedge fund magnate Steve Cohen’s new Hamptons house).

What could lure four high-powered lawyers and hedge-fund types, including two former clerks to the all-powerful Justice Anthony Kennedy, to leave their current perches? How about the chance to earn the kind of money that would make a Supreme Court clerkship bonus look like a diner waitress’s tip?

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