Two Florida men have been arrested in connection with a Craigslist scheme which involved using lawyers' names and bar numbers without permission to provide loan modification and foreclosure defense services. Can anyone say "unauthorized practice of law"?
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They say that a man who represents himself has a fool for a client and Ryan Bundy seems to agree. Bundy was one of the leaders of the armed occupation of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last January, an occupation which ending with one occupier dead and Bundy in jail.
Now Bundy is leading his own legal defense. In a filing submitted last Thursday, Bundy claimed that he was "an idiot," and "incompetent," and demanded $100 million to stand trial.
Last week, we wrote about a fight between Donald Trump and Tony Schwartz, co-author to "The Art of the Deal," Trump's famous biography. Here's the story in a nutshell: Schwartz speaks out against Trump, calling him "impulsive and self-centered." Sparks and legal demand letters fly, leading to a pretty entertaining exchange between Trump and Schwartz's lawyers.
Inspired, a reader wrote in to remind us of what could be the best legal response letter ever, the 1974 exchange between a lawyer for the Cleveland Browns and a season-ticket holding attorney who disliked paper airplanes. If you haven't seen this before, you're in for a treat.
Things can get a little juvenile when one plays lawyer for long enough, as this recent Florida incident aptly illustrates. In this case, an attorney falsely accused opposing counsel in a big case of essentially intentionally battering his law clerk with peanuts and pistachios knowing she was allergic to nuts. The problem is, that isn't how it happened at all.
Lan Cai was driving home from her job as a waitress when she was hit by a drunk driver. And, like many car accident victims, Cai, a 20-year-old nursing student in Houston, felt like she needed the help of attorneys afterwards. Enter the Law Offices of Tuan A. Khuu, whose lawyers were so eager to sign Cai up that they allegedly came into her bedroom while she was undressed and sleeping, in order to get her business. But that drive didn't seem to last; in the days following her accident, Cai says her lawyers would not return her calls and even ran off when she came to their office.
Cai eventually retained new counsel, then went online to complain that the attorneys were "super unprofessional" and "pushy." Now, the firm is suing Cai, rather than representing her.
Donald Trump isn't getting along with his former ghostwriter, these days. Tony Schwartz, the co-author of Trump's 1987 memoir "The Art of the Deal," has taken to campaigning against the presidential candidate, going on national TV to call him "impulsive and self-centered." The man who helped create the Donald Trump myth is now working actively against it, arguing that Trump is unfit to lead the country and claiming full credit for his famous memoir.
But enough about Trump and Schwartz. In this battle between a bellicose presidential contender and a famous ghostwriter, the best lines are being exchanged by their lawyers.
Saul Goodman isn't exactly the type of lawyer most of us aspire to be. Goodman was made famous as the desperate, slimy, and completely endearing attorney in "Breaking Bad." Played by Bob Odenkirk, Goodman was the bumbling accomplice to Walter White's meth-making mastermind. And the character was so popular he got his own spin-off, in the form of "Better Call Saul," a prequel which chronicles the ways a down-on-his-luck lawyer remains very much down on his luck.
But Saul Goodman has become an unlikely inspiration to many lawyers, at least when it comes to advertising. As the Wall Street Journal's Law Blog points out, "Better Call [Me]" has become a recurrent template for attorney advertising.
There are plenty of stories out there about lawyers behaving badly -- lawyers who murder, lawyers who are arrested on drug charges, while in court, lawyers who live double lives as prostitutes.
But it's not just attorneys who act out every now and then. There are plenty of judges who can give the worst lawyers a run for their money. Here are just a few, from the FindLaw archives.
Every once in awhile, some low level employee's distasteful description of his customers will blow up in the media. There's the racist slur on a pizza box, or the use of "fatty" as a name on a customer receipt.
We knew this sort of behavior was not exclusive to sales clerks, but we can't help but be a little hurt when we learned that a Social Security administrative law judge in Wisconsin had made similarly intemperate remarks -- at least for his position.
Future lawyers, are you jealous of all your non-law friends running around catching Pokemon while you cram for the bar? Don't be. Join them.
The summer's biggest light-hearted cultural phenomenon is the perfect thing for J.D.'s studying for the bar. And no, we're not kidding. Here's why.