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The Patron Saint of Defense Attorneys

Ted Kaczynski. Jared Lee Loughner. Eric Rudolph. Susan Smith. And now, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. They all stood (or stand) accused of committing heinous crimes. They all faced (or face) the death penalty. And they all have something- or rather, someone- else in common. [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz on Jul 1, 2014 - 17 comments

Guilt by Association

Debo Adegbile was selected by President Obama to be assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. The Senate, aided and abetted by seven Democratic senators, killed his nomination. Why? Because he’s fought for civil rights.
posted by T.D. Strange on Mar 7, 2014 - 50 comments

"Did I mention I'm Jewish?"

Daniel Muessig wants to be your criminal defence lawyer.
posted by alby on Mar 6, 2014 - 28 comments

A GRAT Idea Whose Time Has Come

Grantor retained annuity trusts are a method that the ultra rich use to avoid gift taxes. Many lawyers insist that these trusts are a cornerstone of any sound estate plan.
posted by reenum on Dec 19, 2013 - 22 comments

The Last Days of Big Law

Of all the occupational golden ages to come and go in the twentieth century—for doctors, journalists, ad-men, autoworkers—none lasted longer, felt cushier, and was all in all more golden than the reign of the law partner. Noam Schreiber on The Last Days of Big Law: You can't imagine the terror when the money dries up. Former law partner Steven J. Harper, author of The Lawyer Bubble, believes the profession to be in existential crisis. Another former partner weighs in. Libertarian law professor Richard Epstein presents a more sanguine view.
posted by shivohum on Jul 22, 2013 - 55 comments

Hiding Public Land

For years in Malibu, CA, homeowners have tried to hide public access points to local beaches in order to prevent people from using them. A recently released app has tipped off the public as to exactly where these access points are, causing an outcry from the homeowners.
posted by reenum on Jun 23, 2013 - 114 comments

RTF Print

Small Print, Big Problem (part I)
Imagine you’ve clicked on your computer screen to accept a contract to purchase a good or service—a contract, you only realize later, that’s straight out of Kafka. The widget you’ve bought turns out to be a nightmare. You take to Yelp.com to complain about your experience—but lo, according to the contract you have given up your free speech rights to criticize the product. Let’s also say, in a fit of responsibility, (a bit fantastic, I know) you happened to have printed out this contract before you “signed” it, though you certainly hadn’t read through the thing, which is written, literally, on a “twenty-seventh grade” reading level. Well, you read it now (perhaps with the help of a friend who’s completed the twenty-seventh grade). And you see that there was nothing in the contract limiting your right to free speech at the moment you signed it. That part was added later. Your friend with the twenty-seventh-grade education points to the clause in the contract in which you’ve granted this vendor-from-hell the right to modify the terms of the contract, unilaterally, at any time into the vast limitless future.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on May 1, 2013 - 36 comments

Caveat Emptor?

After several failed attempts against other schools, a lawsuit against Thomas Jefferson School of Law for providing misleading employment data to prospective students is moving forward.
posted by reenum on Dec 4, 2012 - 42 comments

Pop! Goes the Law School Bubble

With the number of LSAT test takers in sharp decline, has the law school tuition bubble finally burst?
posted by reenum on Mar 20, 2012 - 79 comments

Pie In the Sky

Tom Monaghan had a dream: To create a law school and surrounding community that would adhere strictly to Catholic values. Things have not gone according to plan. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Mar 17, 2012 - 102 comments

Guantanamo: An Oral History

Guantanamo: An Oral History
posted by reenum on Jan 12, 2012 - 8 comments

The Law School Bubble

There has been an increasing outcry over the bleak job prospects facing law school graduates. Paul Campos, author of the "Inside The Law School Scam" blog, argues that continued high enrollment at law schools may be due to "lemming psychology".
posted by reenum on Dec 27, 2011 - 94 comments

The Price To Play Its Way

Want your new law school to get accredited by the American Bar Association? Be prepared to jump through some hoops.
posted by reenum on Dec 18, 2011 - 39 comments

Lawyer Wants Someone Who Will Go "Above And Beyond"

Samir Zia Chowhan, sensing a prime opportunity in this down economy, set out to hire a secretary who could not only do the typing and filing, but could also engage in group sex with Chowhan and his law partner. The Illinois Supreme Court found that this is conduct unbecoming of an attorney and suspended Chowhan's law license.
posted by reenum on Dec 12, 2011 - 34 comments

Is a Law Degree a Good Investment Today?

Professor Herwig Schlunk of Vanderbilt University explores whether a law degree is a good investment today. (SSRN link) [more inside]
posted by reenum on Nov 23, 2011 - 49 comments

F*ck You! Pay Me!

F*ck You! Pay Me! Customers not wanting to pay for work done (or pay less than what was originally agreed to) is a common problem that many business owners run into. In this 40 minute video, Mike Monteiro, a web designer, and his lawyer offer advice on how to get clients to pay up. The talk is aimed at freelancers and small firms that provide creative services. Note: There is some swearing in this video. [via Ask Mefi]
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear on Oct 16, 2011 - 51 comments

Law Schools Found Misrepresenting Jobs Data

Over the past couple of months, there have been a series of scandals that have rocked the legal education community. First, there were tandem lawsuits against Thomas M. Cooley School of Law and New York Law School for misrepresenting jobs data. Then, Villanova University and the University of Illinois were found to be fudging their employment numbers. A legal team is now preparing to sue 15 different law schools because of misrepresentations made to students regarding job and salary data.
posted by reenum on Oct 9, 2011 - 43 comments

Addressing the Justice Gap

Several commentators are advocating the deregulation of the practice of law.
posted by reenum on Aug 26, 2011 - 125 comments

Seoul's Intellectual Pressure Cooker

Welcome to Exam Village, a neighborhood in Seoul where people live while studying for various professional entrance exams.
posted by reenum on Aug 23, 2011 - 23 comments

What if law schools opened their own law firms?

The job market is saturated and graduates are unable to get hired anywhere to get proper training. Law professors Richard Rhee and Bradley Borden have a solution: law schools should open their own law firms.
posted by reenum on Aug 19, 2011 - 93 comments

Now You See It, Now You Don't

Homeowners are using a little known loophole in the bankruptcy laws to shed their second mortgages.
posted by reenum on May 9, 2011 - 42 comments

Unfit counsel

"This conflict of interest hits at the heart of the attorney-client relationship." Robert Caulley has served 14 years of a life sentence for the murder of his parents, a crime he says he didn't commit. Some hope that unknown DNA found on a gun at the crime scene will prove his innocence, citing similar exonerations in other high-profile Ohio cases, but so far Caulley's attempts to revisit his case with further DNA testing have failed. But look, Caulley already had his day in court with his lawyer by his side, doing everything possible to clear him, right? So he thought -- until he learned that his defense attorney was sleeping with his wife during his trial.
posted by escabeche on Apr 21, 2011 - 20 comments

Conviction

Betty Anne Waters's brother Kenny was sent to prison for first degree murder and armed robbery in 1982. Over the next 16 years, Betty Anne got her GED, college degree, and law degree, all in an effort to prove Kenny was innocent. With the assistance of the Innocence Project, Betty Anne was able to use DNA evidence to show Kenny was innocent. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Mar 24, 2011 - 28 comments

The 25-Year 'Foreclosure From Hell'

Patsy Campbell has been fighting her foreclosure in Florida courts for the past 25 years. She has not made a mortgage payment since 1985 while foiling the efforts of several banks to evict her from her home in Okeechobee, Florida.
posted by reenum on Dec 30, 2010 - 150 comments

The Loophole Artist

Jonathan Blattmachr, one of the country's leading estates and trusts experts, feels that helping his clients reduce their tax liability helps the IRS close loopholes that he and his colleagues use. As with most attorneys, there are some clients who weren't happy with his work, but Mr. Blattmachr pushes on with his efforts.
posted by reenum on Dec 29, 2010 - 18 comments

Plaintiff Paul Hupp's Petition for Rehearing

Plaintiff has news for these slime ball, piece of shit, ass clown judges. (pdf)
posted by Avenger50 on Oct 29, 2010 - 35 comments

Have you ever spent a Thanksgiving reviewing 1.2 million pages of billing records in a warehouse in Topica?

So you want to go to law school?(SLYT) [more inside]
posted by Muddler on Oct 20, 2010 - 118 comments

For pity's sake, don't go to law school.

Despite the most prestigious law firms in the country laying off almost 6,000 attorneys and 9,000 staff since the beginning of 2008, century-old law firms dissolving almost overnight, and law school tuition rising everywhere, law school applications are at an all time high. Even the number of law schools is rising.

But with the century-old Cravath system being "misapplied" by big firms over the last decade, historical income distributions have been disrupted.

For good or ill, things may be coming to a head. [more inside]
posted by valkyryn on Jun 11, 2010 - 188 comments

Worst. Divorce. Ever.

A lawyer and her husband decide to get a divorce. Then, the lawyer loses her mind.
posted by reenum on Jun 10, 2010 - 131 comments

The Justice Gap in America

Nearly one million people who seek help for civil legal problems, such as foreclosures and domestic violence, will be turned away this year. A new report by the Legal Services Corporation, a non-profit established by Congress in 1974 to ensure equal access to justice, finds that legal aid programs turn away one person for every client served. The full report, "Documenting the Justice Gap in America" is available here (pdf). The 2009 report is an update and expansion on a 2005 report (available here) finding that 80% of the poor lacked access to legal aid. [more inside]
posted by lunit on Sep 30, 2009 - 8 comments

Cemented

This fall, law students are competing for half as many openings at big firms as they were last year in what is shaping up to be the most wrenching job search season in over 50 years.

Had I seen where the market was going, I would’ve gone to a lower-ranked but less expensive public school,” [a second year law student at Penn] said. “I’m questioning whether law school was the right choice at all."
posted by plexi on Aug 26, 2009 - 214 comments

Catherine Roraback

Catherine Roraback was the only woman in her class at Yale Law School. She was a founder of the Connecticut ACLU, and a president of the National Lawyers Guild. During her long career she defended labor organizers, immigrants, civil rights organizers, Black Panthers, and maybe most famously, Estelle Griswold before the United States Supreme Court in the case that legalized the distribution of birth control. She died this week at age 87. [more inside]
posted by serazin on Oct 24, 2007 - 19 comments

Court martial begins for Guantanamo JAG who leaked detainee list

It began with an innocent-looking Valentine's Day card in 2005. Inside the card were several slips of paper, a hastily cut-up printout of names of 550 secret detainees at Guantanamo Bay. The human rights lawyer who received "this weird valentine" handed it over to authorities, and this week the court martial begins for JAG LtCmdr Matthew Diaz, facing 36 years for divulging state secrets.
Whither goest thou, American Jurisprudence?
posted by planetkyoto on May 15, 2007 - 47 comments

In this world, nothing is certain but death and taxgirl

Taxgirl is a tax lawyer who invites you to ask her offbeat and unique questions about federal taxation in the United States, as well as Philadelphia-specific tax questions. She also covers the fun side of taxation and the not-so-fun side of tax evasion, usually the domain of Posse Comitatus and white supremacist groups, but lately extending in bizarre ways to celebrities like Wesley Snipes and Ron Isley.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Feb 23, 2007 - 20 comments

The King of Torts

The billionaire attorney. The King of Torts. Legendary Texas Lawyer. He is Joe Jamail. He is most famous for his record setting verdict in Texaco v. Pennzoil (which eventually made it to the US Supreme Court) in which Joe secured a $10.3 billion dollar judgment (though it is not known for sure, some speculate that Joe walked with $1 billion in attorney's fees in that case). In addition to being well known for his success, he is almost as legendary for his colorful demeanor. One such example was when he got reprimanded for his behavior in Paramount Communications Inc. v. QVC Network, Inc.. But to see him in action with your own eyes, we have video of classic Joe during a deposition he was giving. (via brainwidth).
posted by dios on Apr 7, 2006 - 47 comments

Lawyer Blog (?)

Phila Lawyer reads like fiction (awesome, Hunter S. Thompson -esque fiction -- Part 1, 2 ) to outsiders, but that might just be because it's so fucking good. The lawyers commiserating in the comments, at least, think it's real.
The navigation is cumbersome -- if you're not careful, you'll come into a story in the middle. For your perusal, then, I've laid a few out:
Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Part 1, 2
Part 1, 2, 3, 4

posted by Tlogmer on Mar 30, 2005 - 7 comments

How I Lost the Big One

How I Lost the Big One Lawrence Lessig on losing Eldred v. Ashcroft: "We had in our Constitution a commitment to free culture. In the case that I fathered, the Supreme Court effectively renounced that commitment. A better lawyer would have made them see differently."
posted by ericost on Mar 3, 2004 - 40 comments

Lawyer of the Rings

If you're going to make a deal with Sauron, consult your lawyer first.
posted by tdismukes on Dec 22, 2003 - 9 comments

Apple lawyers target Mac Themes Project

Apple lawyers target Mac Themes Project -- Apple has issued a cease and desist order against Mac Themes Project (MTP) for creating a theme editor. Apple claims the editor enables third parties to copy its copyrighted trademark themes by "improperly copying Apple's copyrighted software code and graphic files".
posted by shauna on Apr 17, 2001 - 15 comments

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