Legal Ethics

  • January 21, 2021

    Attys Go After Giuliani's Law License Over Campaign Tactics

    New York State Bar Association leaders and academics hit Rudy Giuliani with an ethics complaint Thursday, joining others in calling on the bar to suspend the former New York City mayor's license and investigate potential professional violations for persistently touting false voter fraud claims while spearheading ex-President Donald Trump's efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

  • January 21, 2021

    Steptoe & Johnson Axes Steel Importer's $6M Malpractice Suit

    A Texas federal judge dismissed a steel importer's $6 million malpractice suit against Steptoe & Johnson LLP Thursday, finding that the case was brought in the wrong court since the firm didn't perform any terms of the contract in question within the Lone Star State.

  • January 21, 2021

    Feds Ask To Postpone Avenatti's Calif. Case To July From Feb.

    Federal prosecutors in California have requested a delay to an upcoming embezzlement trial for disgraced celebrity lawyer Michael Avenatti, saying the COVID-19 pandemic makes a February date unsafe.

  • January 21, 2021

    Florio Perrucci Settles Malpractice Suit Over Severed Leg Row

    Florio Perrucci has settled a malpractice suit with State National Insurance Co. for an undisclosed sum over allegations that the law firm dropped the ball in defending state agencies in a suit brought by a woman who lost her leg in a multivehicle collision.

  • January 21, 2021

    Atty Beats Pravati's Sanctions Bid In Gears Of War Fee Fight

    A Pennsylvania federal judge on Wednesday rejected Pravati Capital's move to sanction a Philadelphia attorney who sought fees from the litigation funder for work on an unsuccessful publicity rights suit over the video game Gears of War, finding the attorney's claims were not frivolous.

  • January 21, 2021

    Borrowers Want Sanctions In Tribe-Linked Lending Row

    A proposed class of loan borrowers wants to sanction a vendor for tribal companies involved in online lending, accusing him of engaging in a "Stalingrad defense" and doing everything he can to delay complying with discovery requests.

  • January 21, 2021

    Cruise Co. Says TCPA Invalid Prior To High Court Ruling

    Royal Seas Cruises Inc. has once again pushed for dismissal of a class action over its alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, telling a California federal judge that a U.S. Supreme Court decision last year rendered the act unconstitutional when the violations are alleged to have occurred and the statute cannot be applied retroactively.

  • January 21, 2021

    Attys For Davis Polk Want $100K For Work In Bias Case

    Attorneys representing Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP told a New York federal court that a former associate should pay $100,000 for their work making him cough up evidence in his racial bias suit against the BigLaw firm.

  • January 21, 2021

    Offit Kurman Fights Ex-Client's Sanctions Bid Over Escrow

    Offit Kurman PA has called on a New Jersey federal court to toss a former client's bid to sanction it for pursuing a suit to decide the fate of roughly $2.4 million held by the firm, saying competing claims to those escrow funds justified taking the dispute to court.

  • January 21, 2021

    MLB Looks To Put Atty On Hook For Ex-Pitcher's Sanctions

    Major League Baseball and its players union urged a California federal judge Thursday to hold a former pitcher-turned-health supplement pitchman in civil contempt for failing to pay court-ordered sanctions in their nine-year fight over a banned growth hormone and asked that his lawyer be made jointly liable for the sanctions.

  • January 21, 2021

    NY Firm Accused Of Misleading Debtors In Collection Letters

    A Long Island-based law firm was hit with a proposed class action Wednesday, alleging that it violated federal law by sending unsolicited letters to consumers with inaccurate debt balances and misrepresented the nature of those debts, according to a complaint filed in the Southern District of New York.

  • January 21, 2021

    Contingency Fee Ruling Paves Way For Hybrid Arrangements

    A recent appellate ruling has made damages-based agreements in the U.K. more attractive and could herald a new era for litigation funding by permitting a wide array of hybrid arrangements that lawyers say would make it easier to take advantage of the contingency fee structure.

  • January 21, 2021

    DOJ Apologizes For Omitting Facts About Kids' Deportation

    The U.S. Department of Justice has apologized to a D.C. federal judge for filing an affidavit by an immigration official that omitted critical details about the improper deportation of migrant children during a nationwide injunction.

  • January 21, 2021

    Ga. Developer Sues Law Firm, Ex-Partner To Release $1.3M

    A Georgia property developer sued an Atlanta-based commercial real estate law firm and his former business partner Wednesday in state court, claiming the firm refuses to hand over his $1.3 million share from a property sale because of his ex-business partner's baseless objections.

  • January 20, 2021

    Girardi Keese Co-Counsel Wants OK To Rep Gas Leak Clients

    A law firm representing victims of Southern California gas leaks argued Tuesday that it should not be hindered by the stay levied against its bankrupt co-counsel Girardi Keese, despite objections from one of Girardi Keese's creditors.

  • January 20, 2021

    Trump's Final Pardons Erase High-Profile Health Convictions

    Now-former President Donald Trump's last-minute clemency actions included several pardons in health care criminal cases, such as a former InterMune Inc. CEO and former executives of WellCare HealthCare Plans Inc. Here, Law360 breaks down the pardons.

  • January 20, 2021

    Littler Attacks Copyrights It's Accused Of Swiping

    Employment law powerhouse Littler Mendelson has denied allegations that it stole 2,100 copyrighted works from the Center for Workplace Compliance, firing back with two counterclaims challenging CWC's ownership of the material.

  • January 20, 2021

    China Slaps Pompeo, 27 Other Trump Officials With Sanctions

    China on Wednesday unveiled sanctions against 28 former Trump administration officials, including former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, saying they have "offended the Chinese people and seriously disrupted China-U.S. relations."

  • January 20, 2021

    7th Circ. Says Law Firms Not Part Of Alleged Fraud Scheme

    A Seventh Circuit panel on Wednesday said a lower court was right to toss claims that Wolin & Rosen Ltd. and SmithAmundsen LLC conspired with bankers and real estate appraisers to inflate the value of three Michigan hotels that went bust soon after being purchased by new owners.

  • January 20, 2021

    Jones Walker Gets Investigator Added To Malpractice Suit

    Jones Walker LLP on Wednesday convinced a Harris County, Texas, district judge to add a law firm investigator as a responsible third party to a legal malpractice lawsuit brought by a private poker club alleging it was misled about the likelihood of a coming Houston ordinance to regulate card clubs.

  • January 20, 2021

    BMW Slams 'Desperate' Sanctions Bid Over Hidden Info

    BMW of North America LLC asked a Florida federal judge Tuesday to deny a car dealer's sanctions bid against it for allegedly hiding information during discovery, arguing that it honestly responded to discovery requests and that the car dealer is merely trying to "wriggle out" of its discovery agreement.

  • January 20, 2021

    NY Judge Orders Morgan Lewis To Turn Over Trump Org Docs

    A New York state judge has ordered Morgan Lewis & Bockius to hand over documents to the state attorney general's office related to a probe into whether former President Donald Trump's businesses inflated asset values of a New York estate.

  • January 20, 2021

    Powell, Wood Say Not Signing Docs Means No Disbarment

    Sidney Powell and other attorneys facing discipline after challenging Michigan's 2020 election results have told a federal court they should not be referred for disbarment over frivolous filings in the case, claiming they didn't sign the pleadings or formally appear in the matter.

  • January 20, 2021

    Jacoby & Meyers Contrived New Bid To Nix Suit, Clients Say

    A proposed class of Jacoby & Meyers LLP clients asked a New Jersey federal judge to reject the firm's attempt at reviving its summary judgment bid in their billing dispute, saying it's trying to turn an innocuous statement in a reply brief into a crucial bit of new evidence.

  • January 20, 2021

    Ex-NJ Judge Says Town Still Can't Dodge Civil Rights Suit

    Former New Jersey Superior Court Judge Carlia M. Brady, who is suing Woodbridge Township and its police department for an allegedly malicious prosecution over her withholding of information on a then-fugitive boyfriend, has asked a federal judge to allow her civil rights suit to continue despite a disciplinary finding against her.

Expert Analysis

  • Law Firms Should Note GCs' Growing Focus On Biz Strategies

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    Amid the challenges of the pandemic, a shifting digital landscape, and increasing calls for diversity and inclusion, general counsel responsibilities are expanding into six new areas, highlighting the need for both in-house and outside counsel to serve as strategic and empathetic business leaders, say Wendy King at FTI Consulting and David Horrigan at Relativity.

  • 3 Ways To Shield Cyber Reports After Clark Hill Breach Ruling

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    Following a D.C. federal court's recent ruling in Wengui v. Clark Hill that a forensic cyberattack report was not protected work product — more restrictive than last year's Capital One decision — companies should follow new best practices for protecting reports from discoverability, say Colin Jennings and Ericka Johnson at Squire Patton.

  • Privilege Lessons From Clark Hill Cybersecurity Doc Ruling

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    A D.C. federal court's recent rejection of attorney-client privilege and work-product protection claims over post-breach cybersecurity forensic reports in Wengui v. Clark Hill should caution companies to structure their cyberattack investigations in ways that make legal concerns clear, say attorneys at Orrick.

  • 6 Changes The Legal Industry Should Prepare For

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    As clients increasingly demand better efficiency, predictability and cost-effectiveness from their legal partners, especially during the pandemic, law firms and other legal service providers may need to explore new ways to bundle and deliver services — and move away from billing by time, says Joey Seeber at Level Legal.

  • Arizona May Have Nudged US Law Firms Toward Future IPOs

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    No U.S. law firm has its shares listed on a public stock exchange unlike some lucrative overseas counterparts, but by allowing nonattorneys to become stakeholders in law firms, Arizona may have paved the way for this to change should other U.S. states — particularly New York — follow suit, says Marc Lieberman at Kutak Rock.

  • 4 Legal Industry Trends Litigation Financiers Are Watching

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    Some recent litigation developments demonstrate efforts by law firms and their clients to search for opportunities in the COVID-19 economic fallout, while others — such as the rise of contingency fee arrangements — reflect acceleration of tendencies that were already underway, says William Weisman at Therium Capital.

  • A Lawyer's Guide To Setting Well-Being Goals In 2021

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    In the face of rising client demands due to the pandemic and the changing regulatory environment, and with remote work continuing for the foreseeable future, lawyers should invest in their well-being by establishing inspiring yet realistic goals for 2021 — one month at a time, says Krista Larson at Morgan Lewis.

  • Keyword Searches To Improve Your Privilege Doc Review

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    "Confidential" and other search terms commonly used to locate privileged documents during e-discovery are pretty ineffective, so practitioners should consider including specific types of keywords that are demonstrably better at targeting privilege, say Robert Keeling at Sidley and Rishi Chhatwal at AT&T.

  • ABA Approves Remote Practice, But Questions Remain

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    Lawyers working remotely during the pandemic while physically outside the jurisdictions in which they are licensed will find some comfort in a recent American Bar Association opinion sanctioning such practice, but there is ambiguity regarding the contours of what's allowed, say attorneys at Harris Wiltshire.

  • Keys To Creating Standout Law Firm Thought Leadership

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    Whether geared toward a global audience or a particular client, a law firm's articles, blog posts and client alerts should strive to be original by harnessing a few editorial tools and following the right distribution sequence, say Steven Andersen and Tal Donahue at Infinite Global.

  • Perspectives

    Judges On Race: The Power Of Discretion In Criminal Justice

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    Judges should take into consideration the several points of law enforcement and prosecutorial discretion — from traffic stops to charging decisions and sentencing recommendations — that often lead to race-based disparate treatment before a criminal defendant even reaches the courthouse, say Judge Juan Villaseñor and Laurel Quinto at Colorado's Eighth Judicial District Court.

  • 5 Attorney Business Development Tips For The New Year

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    Lawyers should remember that the basics of interpersonal relationships have not changed despite the completely virtual environment caused by the pandemic, and should leverage the new year as an excuse to connect with clients in several ways, say Megan Senese and Courtney Hudson at Pillsbury.

  • Minimizing Disruption To Clients During Law Firm IT Upgrades

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    For law firms planning overhauls in their information technology infrastructures in light of hard lessons learned from pandemic-era transition to remote work, there are five ways to ensure even the biggest tech upgrade has minimal impact on client service, says Brad Paubel at Lexicon.

  • Tips For Drafting Effective Amicus Briefs

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    Careful construction of an amicus brief's essential elements — including the table of contents, which determines whether a brief gets studied or skimmed — and the order in which they are crafted are key to maximizing a party's hoped-for impact on a case before the U.S. Supreme Court or other appellate courts, say Mark Chopko and Karl Myers at Stradley Ronon.

  • A Look At DC Proposals To Curb Outside Counsel Guidelines

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    Deepika Ravi and Lauren Snyder at Harris Wiltshire discuss how recently proposed amendments to the D.C. Rules of Professional Conduct would rein in broad provisions companies commonly demand in their outside counsel guidelines regarding client definition and corresponding conflicts of interest, indemnification, and work product ownership.

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