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Volume practices get a bad rap. People assume that just because you move a lot of clients' cases through the system, that you are doing a lesser job on the cases.

Bollocks. Moving a case quickly, or more accurately, efficiently from intake to completion is good for you (because it frees up time for more clients) and great for your client (fewer billable hours, obviously).

Of course, efficiency and volume have to be balanced with diligence, ethics, and customer service. Fortunately, we've got a few resources that can help.

Tom DeLay may avoid prison for money laundering after all, especially after a ruling late last week by a Texas appellate court to overturn his conviction.

According to The Washington Post, the disgraced former U.S. House Majority Leader was "on [his] knees praying" at the National Prayer Center in D.C. when he received the news.

The saga of DeLay's criminal charges has lasted almost a decade since his indictment. Will this be its final chapter?

If anyone can remember law school, did you have a paper that was sent back to you with the damning message "REDO" or "See Me" in fat red ink on the title page?

Well, the Fifth Circuit's decision in U.S. v. Citgo is pretty much their version of that, spanking the Western District of Louisiana court for failing to do the admittedly complicated analysis required to calculate damages from a 2006 Citgo oil spill.

Evidently, even federal courts can be called to task for doing lazy legal analysis.

SCOTUS Rejects Latest Jeffrey Skilling Appeal

Former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling is one of the most hated men in Houston. He's not getting much love from the Supreme Court either.

Monday, the Supreme Court denied Skilling's petition for review of judge's "harmless" error in Skilling's trial. The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals previously rejected Skilling's appeal, finding that the jury was presented with "overwhelming evidence that Skilling conspired to commit securities fraud," The New York Times reports.

Fifth Circuit Law Schools Make Best Bar Passage Rate List

Law school isn't the certain path to financial stability and happiness that our parents believed it would be. Increasing numbers of law school grads are discovering that a life of discovery isn't all that it's cracked up to be, and leaving billables behind for greener pastures -- even if it means less green in the bank.

But before making a decision to quit practicing, a lawyer has to start practicing law, which means passing the bar.

The National Jurist, a publication that describes itself as "the voice of legal education," recently released its list of the top 50 best schools for bar exam preparation. Interestingly, all three Fifth Circuit states have schools on the list, and Louisiana State University's Paul M. Hebert Law Center is ranked first.

Target, Practice: ProView Makes Lawyers Swifter

As much as we love New Orleans, home of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, it is a dangerous city. There were 199 murders in the Crescent City in 2011. There have already been 20 murders in New Orleans this year, and January isn't quite finished.

While many of the culprits and victims are part of the city's drug and gang violence, bystanders and good Samaritans sometimes get caught in the cross-fire. As a Fifth Circuit practitioner, you not only need to be aware of your surroundings when appearing before the federal appellate court in New Orleans, you also need to take measures to make yourself a less-appealing target. So why not use your iPad and Thomson Reuters new ProView app to make yourself a little safer?

Or at least a faster-moving target.

Top Five List: Most Interesting Opinions from the Fifth Circuit

At each year's end, lists dominate the Internet as writers determine the best of the best and the worst of the worst. It's arbitrary and lazy, but readers love lists. So who are we to deny the people?

Thus, in the spirit of populist pandering, we bring you our top five list featuring the most interesting Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals cases from 2011.

Starting a Law Firm? FindLaw's Law Firm Management Site Can Help

One of our lawyer friends was laid off from a law firm in 2009. His dismissal included an awkward it's-not-you-it's-the-economy conversation. Then his former boss asked, "So where do you think you'll work?"

The friend responded, "I haven't thought about it. Until five minutes ago, I thought I worked here."

He ended up starting a law firm. With his public relations-guru wife tirelessly promoting the practice, he has been one of the small firm success stories to emerge from the global financial meltdown.

Order in the Court? Chief Judge Jones to Colleague: Shut Up!

The pressures of the bench may finally be affecting Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Chief Judge Edith Jones.

After admonishing District Judge Sam Sparks for acerbic opinions, (Sparks ordered two attorneys to report to a ‘kindergarten party’ after they were “unable to practice law at the level of a first-year law student” and issued an order in which he called out another attorney for incompetence), Chief Judge Jones is, herself, in the spotlight for bad manners.

First up? The infamous email criticizing Judge Sparks’ “caustic, demeaning, and gratuitous” treatment of attorneys. While email is a fast, efficient form of communication, it’s easily distributed to the masses with a click of a button. Every lawyer knows the danger of an email trail which makes some people question why Chief Judge Jones didn’t call Judge Sparks for a tête-à-tête.