Supreme Court

  • Oyez! Oyez! Oyez!

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 06.01.15

    * A litigant with a Supreme pimp hand? Darius Clark, the man whose child-abuse case — which is currently before SCOTUS — will determine whether teachers may testify of behalf children, was indicted for allegedly running a prostitution ring from jail. [Northeast Ohio Media Group]

    * Judge Mark Fuller of the Middle District of Alabama was arrested last summer on domestic violence charges after his wife confronted him about an alleged affair with a law clerk. What a gent! He’ll be resigning from the bench August 1. [USA Today]

    * You can roll your eyes at Rand Paul all you want, but several key parts of the Patriot Act expired shortly after midnight because the Senate was unable to reach a deal to extend it. (FYI, DOJ may still use grandfathered privacy-poaching techniques.) [New York Times]

    * “Nothing changes. The system is disgusting. There is no due process.” Do you want to read the story that made Cuba’s government ban an American legal journalist from any further coverage of the country’s court system? Of course you do. [Daily Business Review]

    * “I can’t preserve caution in my delight with Ruth.” This is what retired Justice David Souter wrote about Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s performance after her first week on the bench. He already knew back then that she was no-no-no-NOTORIOUS. [Boston Globe]

    * Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert, who recently resigned from Dickstein Shapiro following his indictment, was allegedly paying a former student “hundreds of thousands of dollars” to keep quiet about past sexual abuse at the politician’s hands. [New York Times]

    * Beau Biden, former state attorney general of Delaware, major in the Delaware Army National Guard’s JAG Corps, and son of Vice President Joe Biden, RIP. [Washington Post]

    56 Comments / / Jun 1, 2015 at 9:07 AM
  • OMAHA -- June 4, 2014.


    Non-Sequiturs: 05.28.15

    * Nebraska banned the death penalty. Does this signal a new conservative opposition to the practice? Well, is there a way this can make private prison lobbyists more money? Because then, yes. [FiveThirtyEight]

    * The best way to sway a Supreme Court justice? Represent clients that the justices have financial stakes in. [Fix the Court]

    * Pharmaceutical companies are peeved that lawyers are using Facebook to identify class action plaintiffs. Why aren’t people content to suffer grievous injury for the sake of profits anymore? [Bloomberg Business]

    * Now you can know for sure if your job will be replaced by a robot. Good news, lawyers! Unfortunately, I don’t think this thing’s taking into account document reviewers. [Postgrad Problems]

    * Jawbone is accusing Fitbit of poaching workers to steal its technology. Ten points to the tipster for the line: “Think this will all work out?” [Slate]

    * Two Biglaw partners from rival firms have joined forces on a new challenge Native American adoption rules. It helps that they’re married to each other. [National Law Journal]

    * An interesting perspective: “innovation” is more than technology, and it starts with debt relief. [Rawr]

    * A former state senate candidate charged with witness tampering. At least he’s got experience with the system — his dad’s political career ended in a hail of guilty pleas too. [Nashoba Publishing]

    * Brace yourselves for a shocker, but Biglaw is failing women. [The American Lawyer]

    * David Gans on the upcoming “one person, one vote” claim. The proposition at issue, that representation is based on “voters” not “persons,” is so laughably unconstitutional the Court is clearly just trolling us at this point. I mean, putting aside the horrible racism, isn’t the 3/5ths compromise pretty compelling evidence that the Founders meant to count people who didn’t vote? [Constitutional Accountability Center]

    15 Comments / / May 28, 2015 at 5:31 PM
  • Phil Alito small

    Samuel Alito, SCOTUS, Supreme Court

    Philip Alito, Son Of Justice Alito: Where Is He Now?

    Philip Alito, son of Justice Alito, recently left Gibson Dunn for a new job; where is he now?

    31 Comments / / May 28, 2015 at 2:01 PM
  • Marilyn J. Mosby (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.28.15

    * As it turns out, Marilyn Mosby, State’s Attorney for Baltimore, has been a legal all-star for much of her adult life. Not only did she file charges against police officers in the death of Freddie Gray, but she won a case in front of Judge Judy. Watch the video below. [New York Daily News]

    * “No one needs more than 18 years in the high stakes and extremely powerful position of Supreme Court justice.” If you’re against lifetime terms for SCOTUS justices, you’re going to love Fix the Court’s new initiative for voluntary term limits. Who’d actually follow through with this? [Legal Times]

    * The DOJ brought a landmark case against FIFA officials, but there’s likely going to be a problem getting those who were charged extradited from Switzerland. Legal experts say it’ll be at least six months until we can get them in the U.S. penalty box. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * Sure, Dewey & LeBoeuf’s former chief financial officer may have referred to the firm’s “fake income” and hoped for a “clueless auditor,” but come on, that doesn’t mean that he was involved in anything fraudulent. He’s just a really “blunt” kind of guy. [Am Law Daily]

    * UC law students are thanking Gov. Jerry Brown they’re exempt from supplemental tuition increases — “[they] are paying a ton already for [their] degrees.” Good thing legal education is in the toilet, otherwise they’d be paying the fee hikes. [Los Angeles Times]

    * Comedian Tracy Morgan has settled his personal injury lawsuit against Wal-Mart over the tractor-trailer truck crash he was involved in last summer. The terms of the settlement have not been disclosed, but we imagine someone will leak them online soon. [Reuters]

    28 Comments / / May 28, 2015 at 8:40 AM
  • Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg


    Non-Sequiturs: 05.27.15

    * You down with R.B.G.? Yeah, you know me! Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore wants SCOTUS Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan to be impeached for having performed same-sex marriage ceremonies. Haters gonna hate. [Huffington Post]

    * Here’s a jury duty chart of those you’ll be forced to sit next to, from the “idiot who treats the Jury Foreman selection like a presidential campaign” to the “elderly woman who compares everything to an episode of ‘Matlock’ she once saw.” [Mandatory]

    * It turns out that the state trooper who failed to do anything about Josh Duggar’s criminal sexual activity with a minor and allowed the statute of limitations to run had a penchant for child porn. According to court records, this guy is… pretty damn disgusting. [Jezebel]

    * “May I please have some of that money you’ve got under the counter there, miss?” Are you really robbing a bank if you acted like a Boy Scout, asked nicely for money, and then received it — to the tune of $28,000? Kevin Underhill doesn’t think so. [Lowering the Bar]

    * If you’ve never seen a Dealbreaker dramatic reading before, then here’s your sneak peek. Watch “the greatest intern Wall Street has ever seen” invite everyone and their mother to a party via company email, and then fail in the most epic sense of the word. [Dealbreaker]

    20 Comments / / May 27, 2015 at 5:04 PM
  • Howard Dean (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.22.15

    * Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich isn’t the only politician who will be joining Dentons. After Dentons completes a merger with McKenna Long & Aldridge, former DNC Chair Howard Dean will also be working for the largest law firm in the world. YEEEAAAH! [The Intercept]

    * Now that New York has adopted the Uniform Bar Exam, other states are considering it. Hurry up, because the UBE will “break down the long persistent barriers that keep lawyers from moving” — which isn’t a bad thing. [National Law Journal]

    * In half a century of reproductive and gay rights cases, it’s worth noting that “arguments based on a right to privacy have tended to weaken and crack; arguments based on equality have grown only stronger.” Let’s see what SCOTUS does in June. [The New Yorker]

    * All six of the Baltimore police officers who were arrested following the death of Freddie Gray have been indicted on homicide and assault charges. Despite the fact there’s now an indictment, the officers’ lawyers are calling the prosecution’s case weak. [New York Times]

    * “Can you #trademark a #hashtag?” It’s somewhat of a tricky issue for people who are trying to register their marks at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, but these attorneys from IP powerhouse Morrison & Foerster have a pretty good explanation. []

    31 Comments / / May 22, 2015 at 8:31 AM
  • Amal Clooney (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.19.15

    * Amal Clooney of Doughty Street Chambers, who happens to be married to George Clooney, is being heralded as an “exotic, luxe-brand Princess Diana upgrade.” Lesson learned: marry a celebrity and your legal credentials look awesome. [New York Magazine]

    * If you’re into fashion at the high court, this satirical news website managed to get an exclusive photo of all of the Supreme Court justices in their new spaghetti strap sun-robes. You know what Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg must be thinking about her colleagues: “Do you even lift?” [The Onion]

    * The William Mitchell Law professors who filed suit against the school to protect the tenure code after its merger with Hamline Law was announced have voluntarily dropped their case. Apparently no harm will come to the precious after all. [National Law Journal]

    * Vicente Sederberg, a firm that focuses on marijuana law, will sponsor a three-year professorship for marijuana law and policy at Denver Law. Sam Kamin will be the first to hold the position. Come see him at ATL’s marijuana reception in June. [The Cannabist]

    * Everyone in the legal community likes to complain about the fact that law reviews are useless because no one reads them. We dare you to complain about an entire law review issue dedicated to the legal problems presented in AMC’s Breaking Bad. [WSJ Law Blog]

    29 Comments / / May 19, 2015 at 9:00 AM
  • uber-300x260


    Non-Sequiturs: 05.18.15

    * Uber is building a 70-lawyer in-house group. Constantly going to outside counsel got too spendy after partners instituted surge pricing on all billable hours over 80/week. [Law and More]

    * Justice Ginsburg presided over a same-sex wedding yesterday. Could she have tipped her hand on the upcoming marriage equality decisions by consistently emphasizing the word “Constitution”? The article begins: “The groom and groom strolled down the aisle to the mellow strains of ‘Mr. Sandman.'” The first time I read that I thought it said, “Enter Sandman,” which, admit it, would be a much cooler wedding song. [New York Times]

    * Professor Rick Hasen, for one, thinks that might be exactly what RBG just did, noting her history of offering sly hints about the outcomes of unannounced decisions. [Election Law Blog]

    * Is there a legal solution to save Charleston Law? That’s interesting, but the bigger takeaway from this piece is that one of the board members actually left the stage during commencement after the invocation denounced greed. You cannot make this stuff up. [Post and Courier]

    * Those pesky nuns. [Lowering the Bar]

    * Stanford’s student commencement speaker crowdsourced her speech. It was all going along fine until the 3 minutes segment where she just yelled, “Baba Booey” over and over again. [Forbes]

    * California releases its February bar exam results. The only thing in California lower than those passage rates are the reservoirs, amiright? [Bar Exam Stats]

    * Richard Hsu talks with Henry Bushkin, Johnny Carson’s lawyer and the author of a new book about the late “King of Late Night.” [Hsu Untied]

    * Happy birthday to Professor Joseph Crea of Brooklyn Law School who celebrates his 100th birthday today at the school. [SF Gate]

    17 Comments / / May 18, 2015 at 5:01 PM
  • Marbury-RF

    Politics, Supreme Court

    Ben Carson Versus Marbury v. Madison: The GOP Presidential Candidate Questions Judicial Review

    Dr. Carson is a neurosurgeon and a very good one at that. Ben Carson’s no lawyer or historian.

    51 Comments / / May 15, 2015 at 5:42 PM
  • mm_end_frame-0-1280-0-1024


    Non-Sequiturs: 05.15.15

    * “What Law Firms Can Learn From the Business Decisions of ‘Mad Men.'” I’m hoping the answer is “more drinking on the job.” [Legal Times]

    * Hillary Clinton pledges to nominate SCOTUS justices who will overturn Citizens United. And if you agree with her, she’ll gladly accept your unlimited donations to her *wink* unaffiliated SuperPAC. [Jezebel]

    * Seema Iyer talks about one of our favorite recent cases, Driskell v. Homosexuals. [MSNBC]

    * Sometimes getting fired can be a positive. As they say the Chinese word for crisis contains the word “opportunity.” Crisitunity. [Wisconsin Lawyer]

    * A great detailed piece on California’s recent decision to grant a law license to Hong Yen Chang, the Columbia Law grad denied his license over 100 years ago on the grounds of his “Mongolian nativity.” [Bloomberg BNA / Big Law Business]

    * Bad: Being wrongfully convicted. Worse: The system strong-arming the wronged into signing away their right to compensation. [LFC 360]

    * Should graduate students and adjuncts unionize? Depends. Do they want to be exploited by an unappreciative institution until their souls are sucked dry? Yes? Then no. [New York Times]

    * Sen. Toomey wants Judge L. Felipe Restrepo on the Third Circuit. Maybe he should start talking to his obstructionist colleagues instead of whining to the paper. [Constitutional Accountability Center]

    * PacerPro to automatically retrieve documents referenced in notices of electronic filing from PACER. That can help cut down on some mistakes… eh, Sidley Austin? [Law Sites]

    * Thomson Reuters has a new social network for small law firms. For every post, users can push a little “thumbs up” icon to express, “I [and my successors, assigns, and heirs of my body, indicate my generally warm feelings, reserving all rights to reverse or withdraw this endorsement at any time for any reason whatsoever notwithstanding any prior representations] This!” [Legal Research & Writing Pro]

    * The 2015 World Championship BBQ Cooking Contest in Memphis is this weekend. How does that relate to ATL? Bob Cornish, a D.C.-based attorney at Phillips Lytle LLP and a trained and certified expert in BBQ is a judge. [Memphis In May]

    8 Comments / / May 15, 2015 at 5:17 PM
  • Justice Sonia Sotomayor

    SCOTUS, Sonia Sotomayor, Vicious Infighting

    Sonia Sotomayor On Vicious Infighting At The High Court

    The justices on our nation’s most important bench are pretty mean to each other.

    11 Comments / / May 13, 2015 at 4:01 PM
  • Photo by Whit Welles

    Public Interest

    Are You Really A Pirate If You’re Trying To Save The Whales?

    The Ninth Circuit believes that anti-whaling activity is piracy. Might the Supreme Court disagree?

    26 Comments / / May 12, 2015 at 2:31 PM
  • Edward Gero as Justice Antonin Scalia in The Originalist at Arena Stage (photo by C. Stanley Photography)

    Antonin Scalia, SCOTUS, Supreme Court, Theater

    ATL Theater Review: The Originalist

    If you’re interested in theater, the Supreme Court, or both, check out this new play about Justice Antonin Scalia.

    10 Comments / / May 12, 2015 at 1:31 PM
  • Hilary Bricken

    Marijuana, SCOTUS

    Marijuana Melee: Nebraska And Oklahoma v. Colorado

    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.

    / May 11, 2015 at 4:20 PM
  • Natalie Portman (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

    Movies, Ruth Bader Ginsburg

    Natalie Portman Will Star In Ruth Bader Ginsburg Biopic

    Justice Ginsburg is a woman of many firsts, and now she can add “first female justice to have a biopic starring an Oscar winner” to her résumé.

    45 Comments / / May 11, 2015 at 11:01 AM
  • John Roberts LF Chief Justice John Roberts

    John Roberts, Politics, SCOTUS, Supreme Court

    Chief Justice John Roberts ‘Comes Out’

    Do you have something you’d like to share with us, Mr. Chief Justice?

    129 Comments / / May 8, 2015 at 5:35 PM
  • Student-Loans-Cap

    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 05.08.15

    * We mentioned earlier this week that Charleston School of Law may suspend enrollment of first-year students next year. Perhaps the law school’s ultimate failure wouldn’t be a bad deal for students — a closed school loan discharge would actually be a blessing for them. [WSJ Law Blog]

    * With law school graduation right around the corner, you can kiss your dreams of a Supreme Court justice delivering your commencement speech goodbye. Thus far, not a single SCOTUS jurist will deliver remarks at a 2015 ceremony. [National Law Journal]

    * Per the latest report from Citi Private Bank’s Law Firm Group, law firm expenses outpaced revenue in the first quarter of 2015. Some of the biggest expenses are salaries, so maybe this is another reason why some firms are resorting to layoffs. [Am Law Daily]

    * They should’ve just watched The Wire? Under Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s leadership, the Department of Justice is going to launch an investigation into whether the Baltimore Police Department has been involved in any discriminatory police work. [NPR]

    * If you’re still trying to decide which law school to attend, you may want to consider one that has robust practicum offerings. Being “practice ready” after graduation supposedly does wonders for your job prospects. (Just kidding.) [U.S. News & World Report]

    7 Comments / / May 8, 2015 at 9:01 AM
  • 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