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Law School Lab 'LawX' Wants to Close Justice Gap

If you ever thought about a better way to provide legal services, but didn't have the time to develop it, then your time may have come.

BYU Law School is offering a legal design lab to create products and other ways to improve access to legal services. The brainchild of the dean and a startup attorney, LawX will be offered to students at the law school.

"LawX will tackle some of the most challenging issues facing our legal system today," said Gordon Smith, dean of BYU Law School.

LSAT Scores Down: Where Are Top Performers Going?

What's that giant sucking sound coming from law schools?

Is it the sound of fewer students enrolling? No, that alarm has been ringing for seven years now.

This is more like a whoosh from a vacuum of top students leaving for other graduate programs. At least, that's a conclusion from statistics showing a big drop in law school applicants with the highest law school admission test scores.

Affordable Law School in Dallas Gets ABA Approval

The American Bar Association is accrediting another law school, even as the organization is suspending others in an era of declining law school enrollments.

The ABA gave provisional approval to the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law, reviving hopes that the lower-cost law school will break a disturbing mold in legal education. Some law schools are in jeopardy of losing their accreditation, largely due to low admission standards and poor bar pass rates.

"Our goal has always been to equip graduates with practice-ready competencies and the practical knowledge to pass the Texas Bar Exam," said Royal Furgeson, UNT's founding law school dean. "We now have a clear path to demonstrate that the innovative curriculum and the resources we've established will support exactly that kind of success."

Law School Posts $1.5 Million Bond to Protect Students

When your law school has to post a bond, you might as well think about visiting hours because it's starting to sound like jail or worse.

Arizona Summit Law School is not in criminal trouble, but it is in pretty big trouble. A few months ago, the American Bar Association put the school on probation for poor performance.

Now the state's licensing board has ordered the school to post a $1.5 million bond to protect students in case the school closes classes or shuts down completely. That would be the worst case scenario for students at the failing law school.

Arizona Summit Law School Survives Another Lawsuit -- for Now

It was a two-fer at embattled Arizona Summit Law School.

Two former professors sued the law school for breach of their employment contracts, but a federal appeals court affirmed the dismissal of their case. It was the second win this year for the school, which has been embroiled in litigation with both faculty and students.

The complaints expose, however, an ugly underbelly at the struggling law school. It is one of three for-profit law schools run by InfiLaw Systems, which is reportedly trying to unload them in the midst of controversy.

Chemerinsky Named Law Dean at Berkeley: What Are His Priorities?

Constitutional law expert and educator Erwin Chemerinsky will be the new dean at UC Berkeley School of Law, taking on economic challenges that have impacted law schools everywhere and hoping to leave behind a sexual harassment controversy that had tarnished the storied educational institution.

Chermerinsky, who is currently dean of UC Irvine School of Law, brings with him the experience of launching that law school nine years ago. He is a career educator, having taught at several law schools, including Duke and USC, and having published 10 books and hundreds of law review articles.

"We must do all we can to serve our students and prepare them to practice law at the highest level of the profession," he said in a press release. "Berkeley should aspire to be one of the top five law schools in the country, by any and every measure."

Best Time to Get Married During Law School

From the annals of law school posts, we perused dozens of student missives about when is the best time to get married during law school.

The consensus answer was to do it during a winter break or early summer, but definitely not before finals or taking the bar exam. Of course, a few said there is no good time during law school to get married.

And then there were some gems, which say more about how prospective lawyers think than anything about the romance of a white wedding.

Law School Closures Mounting

All good things must come to an end, and so do some bad things -- even law schools.

Since the economy began to push down law school enrollments about seven years ago, the impact has trickled down in a series of law school changes and closures. While the pressure has helped some educators find new ways to attract and retain students, others have looked for solutions in all the wrong places.

Lowering admission standards, misleading students, and otherwise reneging on the law school promise, the dross has dropped out. Here's a list of the good, the bad and the ugly in law school changes and closures:

Why It's Important to Make Friends in Law School

Making friends in law school is sort of like how kids made alliances in the Hunger Games.

If you don't know the story, the kids were pitted against each other in a life-or-death game. To win, only one could survive but it was a good strategy to make alliances with other competitors along the way.

That's law school, right? Except that everybody lives at the end of...well, at least the end of the first semester, hopefully.

Law Student Caught Using Invisible Ink to Cheat

It's hard to know the difference between right and wrong sometimes, especially when you're taking a law school exam.

But using invisible ink to cheat? That's just wrong. And how do you even do that? Talk about blurring the line between the answers...

According to authorities in England, cheating has become a serious problem in higher education. One law student smuggled notes into an exam by writing them on her textbook in invisible ink. Then she used a tiny black light on her pen to see them during the test.

"Is it just a minor thing? No, it is a serious problem," Lord Mike Storey told a parliamentary committee. "What about the number who are not caught?"