President Obama seems to be of the view that if law school were reduced to two years, students would incur two-thirds of the expense of attending law school, be burdened by two-thirds of the debt they currently have, and be generally economically better off than they are today after three years of law school. Most startling about the president’s proposal, however, is that he did not discuss the educational effect of his suggestion on the students or the effect on their clients, says Fred Isquith of Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP.
The use of cy pres in class action context should be eliminated or severely curtailed as it facilitates certification of classes that do not merit certification and is probably not even a reasonable approximation of class member intent, say Anthony Anscombe and Mary Elizabeth Buckley of Sedgwick LLP.
When it comes to preventing cyberattacks, the U.S. government can’t protect its own networks, let alone those of large law firms. And when it comes to deterring and punishing intruders, our government offers even less. We have to do more than play defense. We didn’t reduce street crime by requiring pedestrians to buy better body armor every year, says Stewart Baker, a partner with Steptoe & Johnson LLP and former assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
A federal court recently found that a principal and officer of a franchisor — as opposed to the franchisor entity — was an employer of a former franchisee’s employee and liable for Fair Labor Standards Act violations, despite the fact that the employee testified the principal had no direct control over the plaintiff’s employment, say John Hughes and Stephanie Zosak of DLA Piper.
Although the government shutdown and the debt ceiling crisis are occasionally conflated, they have distinct effects on government operations and on parties interacting and transacting with the government, says Boris Bershteyn, of counsel with Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP and former general counsel of the White House Office of Management and Budget.
In Lamont v. Vaquillas Energy Lopeno, a Texas state appeals court found that a seismic map maintained its trade secret status despite being shared with prospective working-interest owners and investors, and affirmed a trial court's judgment worth $4.9 million in lost profits associated with the improper dissemination and use of the map. It is worth noting that the case was decided prior to and without regard to the recently enacted Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act, says Robert Ballentine of Burleson LLP.
Rule 91a of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure, which went into effect earlier this year, permits a party to recover attorney’s fees if its motion to dismiss an allegedly baseless claim is granted. Notably, nothing in the text of Rule 91a indicates that a court must find an improper motive to award attorney’s fees. Rather, the award is based solely on a finding that the cause of action has no basis in law or in fact, says Jennifer Gibbs of Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP.
Even though a few courts and the U.S. Department of Labor have been seemingly rallying against an overtime concept called the "fluctuating workweek," the Fifth Circuit just reaffirmed, strongly, this compensation approach in Ransom v. M. Patel Enters, says Andrea Johnson of Burleson LLP.
The new Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act makes it more likely that Texas businesses will choose litigation over arbitration because the risk of losing the very trade secrets they are trying to protect due to involuntary disclosure during litigation should be greatly diminished, says Kelly Kirkland of Fulkerson Lotz LLP.
The Sixth Circuit's recent decision in Dow Corning Corp. v. Caffrey demonstrates that Texas’ Rule 11, notwithstanding its procedural designation, operates as a substantive law in federal court that can affect parties’ property rights in a bankruptcy proceeding — even though the result can at times be “regrettable,” say Tye Hancock and Joseph Bain of Thompson & Knight LLP.