Legal Ethics

  • May 26, 2017

    Ill. Bill Would Prohibit Attys From Profiting On Own Patents

    An Illinois state lawmaker has introduced a bill aiming to bar attorneys from receiving legal fees in association with litigation of patents that they themselves own in response to internet security company Cloudflare's recent allegations that the patent-holding company Blackbird Technologies engages in such practices.

  • May 26, 2017

    Atty's Assets Frozen Over $4.5M Judgment Dispute

    A Nevada federal judge brought the hammer down on a lawyer who was accused by an electronic payments company of dodging a $4.5 million judgment by hiding assets in trusts and businesses controlled by his wife, ripping the attorney’s “recalcitrant and contumacious conduct” in a Thursday ruling and freezing all the defendants’ assets.

  • May 26, 2017

    Inheritance Interference Claim Won't Fly, Texas Justices Say

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday rejected the appeal in a family dispute of some heirs of a wealthy landowner who alleged that harmful interference by a Jackson Walker LLP partner caused them to lose out on a 2,400-acre Eagle Ford Shale ranch and underlying interests worth $3 million, holding that Texas does not recognize a claim for tortious interference with an inheritance.

  • May 26, 2017

    Feds Scoff At Philly DA Bid To Toss Charges, Limit Testimony

    Federal prosecutors in Pennsylvania pushed back Friday against an attempt by the Philadelphia district attorney to see 15 criminal charges dismissed, telling the court that the “official act” counts are supported by evidence and should stay in the case.

  • May 26, 2017

    Drug Settlement Malpractice Suits Rightly Tossed: 10th Circ.

    Allegations that a plaintiffs lawyer who once represented hundreds of clients suing Eli Lilly & Co. and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. over diluted cancer drugs committed malpractice by not sharing information about a global settlement deal were properly thrown out, a Tenth Circuit panel said Thursday.

  • May 26, 2017

    NJ Atty Fights Ex-Firm's Defamation, Trade Libel Claims

    A former attorney with Weinberger Law Group LLC has urged a New Jersey state court to trim the firm's lawsuit against her, saying that the allegations are not specific enough to support defamation and trade libel counts, but the firm said its complaint sufficiently sets forth those causes of action.

  • May 26, 2017

    Illinois Atty Shakes Suspension Over Payroll Taxes

    In a rare ruling Thursday, the review board for the Illinois attorney disciplinary body reversed the recommended punishment for a lawyer who was accused of hiding a portion of his firm’s payroll from tax collectors.

  • May 26, 2017

    Atty And Her Dad Used $50M EB-5 Scam To Buy Homes: Gov't.

    Federal prosecutors have accused a California attorney and her father of purchasing numerous multimillion-dollar properties across Southern California with money obtained from their alleged $50 million EB-5 scam that helped Chinese nationals get fraudulent green cards.

  • May 26, 2017

    Atty Faces DQ Bid In Tutoring Service Franchise Row

    The defendants in a franchise row with Huntington Learning Centers Inc. on Thursday urged a New Jersey federal judge to boot an attorney representing the tutoring service from the case, alleging he violated professional conduct rules by having a conversation with them about the case without their own attorney present.

  • May 26, 2017

    Proskauer Atty Can't Win Order Protecting Mediation Docs

    A Proskauer Rose LLP attorney embroiled in a $50 million gender discrimination suit against the firm lost her bid Thursday for a court order to force mediation services provider JAMS Inc. to preserve mediation session records that documented a retaliatory threat purportedly made against her by a Proskauer representative.

  • May 25, 2017

    Pa. Justices Uphold Restrictions On Ex-Gaming Board Attys

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court refused Thursday to overturn an ethics law preventing Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board attorneys from seeking or taking jobs with gaming outfits for two years after leaving the board, ruling that the mandate didn’t interfere with the court’s jurisdiction over attorneys because the rule applied to all employees, not just lawyers.

  • May 25, 2017

    Calif. High Court Bats Down Atty's Beef With Facebook GC

    The California Supreme Court decided Wednesday not to take up a defamation case against Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook’s general counsel, leaving in place the appellate court decision to toss the case.

  • May 25, 2017

    Houston Law Prof Can't Revive Amicus Filing Defamation Suit

    A Texas appellate court held Thursday that a Houston law school professor can’t revive a defamation suit against a family law attorney who complained after the professor penned an amicus letter opposing her litigation position.

  • May 25, 2017

    $18M Telecom Malpractice Case Time-Barred, Pa. Judge Told

    A Pennsylvania state judge was urged during oral arguments Thursday to find that a defunct telecommunications company had waited too long to sue its former attorney, now a partner with Astor Weiss Kaplan & Mandel LLP, for allegedly botching an $18 million case against MCI WorldCom.

  • May 25, 2017

    Calif. Senate Bans Bombastic Judicial Ballot Titles

    The California Senate has passed a bill that would keep prosecutors running for the bench from using self-aggrandizing titles such as “Hardcore Gang Prosecutor” on ballots in an effort to even the playing field between government and private attorneys.

  • May 25, 2017

    Ex-District Judge In Texas Cleared In Campaign Bribery Case

    A former state district judge in Texas, who had to leave the bench and had her law license suspended following her conviction on nine felony charges for bribery and money laundering, was declared innocent Wednesday, acquitted of all charges after the state agreed the evidence couldn't support her conviction.

  • May 25, 2017

    Cleary Gottlieb Beats Ex-Atty's Amended Race Bias Suit

    Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP beat a former project attorney’s suit alleging he was let go because of his race when a Washington, D.C., federal judge found Wednesday that he had failed to show he performed as well as or better than white colleagues kept on after work slowed down.

  • May 25, 2017

    Citing Trump's Kasowitz Hire, Lieberman Quits FBI Job Search

    Joseph Lieberman, the former senator, Democratic vice presidential hopeful and current Kasowitz Benson Torres LLP counsel, has pulled his name out of the running to be the next head of the FBI.

  • May 25, 2017

    Proskauer Atty Says Court Needs To Protect Mediation Docs

    A Proskauer Rose LLP partner suing the firm for gender discrimination doubled-down on her request that mediation services firm JAMS Inc. be ordered to preserve notes from a session in which a firm representative allegedly made a retaliatory threat Wednesday, saying it’s not clear whether JAMS will keep its word to do so voluntarily.

  • May 25, 2017

    Investor Calls Fraud Suit Against Cozen, Blank Rome Timely

    A British real estate investor defended the timeliness of his Pennsylvania federal court fraud suit against Cozen O'Connor, Blank Rome LLP and Cushman & Wakefield over a failed Philadelphia real estate deal, saying in a filing Wednesday that Pennsylvania’s two-year statute of limitations does not apply.

Expert Analysis

  • My Milkshake Is Better Than Yours: Part 2

    Jill Dessalines

    In the second installment of this two-part series on disruptive innovation among mid-size law firms, Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former senior vice president at McKesson Corp., explores a number of ideas for keeping clients and maintaining market position.

  • My Milkshake Is Better Than Yours: Part 1

    Jill Dessalines

    As I sat there listening, incredulous to learn that "Milkshake" was not only a real song but also a chart-topper, it reminded me of Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen’s work on disruptive innovation — and how it pertains to mid-size law firms, says Jill Dessalines, founder of Strategic Advice for Successful Lawyers and former assistant general counsel of McKesson Corp.

  • Weekly Column

    Talking 'Bull': Episode 23, Benevolent Deception

    Roy Futterman

    Most of the jury consulting on this show has consisted of illegal and unethical behavior amid nonsensical trial practices, but at the end of the day, it has probably not done permanent damage to the U.S. legal system — so far, says jury consultant Roy Futterman as the debut season of the CBS show "Bull" comes to a close.

  • Attorneys, Your Input Is Needed On Deposition Rule

    Frank Silvestri, Jr.

    Every lawyer who’s handled a civil case in federal court knows about Rule 30(b)(6), governing deposition procedures. But for many real-world deposition dilemmas, the rule offers little guidance. Last year, an Advisory Committee on Civil Rules subcommittee began considering whether the rule should be amended. Now attorneys must advise the subcommittee how to proceed, says Frank Silvestri Jr. of Verrill Dana LLP.

  • How Client Feedback Programs Benefit Law Firms And Clients

    Elizabeth Duffy

    Despite an increase in engagement with client feedback programs over the last 15 years, law firms — and their clients — have a way to go before realizing the maximum benefits such programs can deliver, says Elizabeth Duffy of Acritas US Inc.

  • Weekly Column

    Talking 'Bull': Episode 22, Dirty Little Secrets

    Roy Futterman

    In the penultimate episode of the CBS show "Bull," the team wrestles with a real issue in jury consulting and the legal professions in general: Should we work with an unsavory client? This is an interesting question that plays out in jury consulting firms on a regular basis, says jury consultant and psychologist Roy Futterman of Doar Inc.

  • Solving The Legal Industry's Data Protection Breakdown

    Jeff Ton

    Most law firms today aren't using common security and data protection measures that other industries employ to protect sensitive data. Options like continuous data replication and backups have various pros and cons, but most importantly, law practices must understand the need for a two-tiered approach to data protection, says Jeff Ton of Bluelock LLC.

  • Discovery Sanctions Get Sanctioned

    Alan Hoffman

    Last month the U.S. Supreme Court reversed a sanctions order issued in Goodyear v. Haeger for bad faith discovery misconduct. And the Eighth Circuit recently reversed a district court sanctions order issued for “obstructive deposition practices.” While these sanctions were judged excessive, litigators must remember that aggressive discovery tactics are always a bad idea, says Alan Hoffman of Husch Blackwell LLP.

  • 5 Things To Know About Justice Gorsuch’s First 30 Days

    Charles Webber

    Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the U.S. Supreme Court a little more than 30 days ago, on April 7, 2017. And while it is too early for him to have written any opinions, Gorsuch participated in the final 13 oral arguments of the 2016 term. Charles Webber of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP offers five takeaways from his first month on the job.

  • Series

    My Strangest Day In Court: When There Were No Witnesses

    Stéphane Bonifassi

    My client — a corporate counsel for a multinational U.S. company — appeared to be an ideal witness, and I was convinced that what he was going to say would tilt the case in his favor. I wanted him on that witness stand. But on the fateful day, the three-judge panel had other ideas, recalls Stéphane Bonifassi of Bonifassi Avocats.