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July 2011 Archives

Auto Workers Protest BMW Layoffs Outside Jackson Lewis Offices

Hundreds of Teamsters and BMW employees spent some time outside the varying offices of labor law firm Jackson Lewis this week, protesting the firm's involvement in the car manufacturer's Southern California labor dispute.

Peeved that BMW is replacing union jobs with contract positions, union members chose to protest Jackson Lewis for helping the company "destroy American jobs."

Who thinks the law firm cares?

NM Judge Pat Murdoch to Retire: Charged with Raping Prostitute

If you're a judge who's been arrested on charges of criminal sexual penetration and intimidation of a witness, what would you do? Keep on presiding over the criminal court you've been presiding over before your arrest? Well, if you're Judge Pat Murdoch, you retire.

The New Mexico judge is retiring after his much-publicized run-in with the law, according to KOAT-TV.

Additionally, Murdoch has agreed to never seek a judicial position in New Mexico ever again, KOAT-TV reports. Why the sudden retirement and agreement?

Chicago Lawyer Asked Employee to Wear Swimsuit to Office?

Though he shares his name with a prominent law firm, the only thing prominent about Chicago lawyer Paul Weiss is his apparent fondness for going pantless.

Officials with the Illinois State Bar, already investigating the class action litigator on six counts of sexual harassment, have added a new accusation to the mix.

A recently hired (and now fired) female employee is accusing him of asking her to wear a swimsuit to the office.

Will More Law Schools (See: Thomas Jefferson) Admit Employment Stats?

Remember Anna Alaburda, the litigious law graduate who started the Thomas Jefferson Law class action lawsuit?

Alaburda graduated from Thomas Jefferson Law in 2008 with honors. Despite the prestige associated with Thomas Jefferson Law (they're ranked "unranked"!), she was unable to find a legal job. Disgruntled and probably a little miffed that her attorney dreams went unfulfilled, she decided to file a class action lawsuit against Thomas Jefferson Law, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Thomas Jefferson Law has now responded to Alaburda's allegations, and in their demurrer, they simultaneously kind of diss Alaburda - while dissing themselves.

In the demurrer, Thomas Jefferson Law points out a crucial mathematical error that Alaburda must have made when she was perusing the U.S. News law school ranking page.

Associate Doesn't Give Notice to Firm, is Barred From Practice

Philadelphia attorney Robert Englert Jr. left a personal injury firm to work for another firm, but unfortunately won't be able to practice law. The reason is because he forgot about a pesky little notice clause in his employment contract.

Englert was supposed to give his former firm 60 days notice before he quit, reports the ABA Journal.

Well, he didn't. And now the firm isn't too happy about it, it appears, as they got an injunction levied against Englert barring him from the practice of law at other law firms, the ABA Journal reports.

Should Howrey Staffers Get Some $500K in Bonuses? Citibank Says No

Howrey employees and staffers have had it rough. First, Howrey dived straight into some dire financial straits. Then, Howrey dissolved into thin air. Okay, so it didn't dissolve literally, but firm partners voted to dissolve the firm in March. And now, Citibank is blocking some poor staffers' Howrey bonuses.

Howrey had wanted to pay some of the staffers working on winding down the business around $500,000 in bonuses, reports Thomson Reuters News & Insight.

There are about 46 lucky employees working on the dissolution of the firm. Howrey had planned to pay around 20 employees bonuses, according to Thomson Reuters News & Insight. Unluckily for them, Citibank's motion in bankruptcy court may mean they might not get any money at all.

NJ Hiring Unpaid 'Special Assistant US Attorney' Positions

The great state of New Jersey is now hiring for some "Special" Assistant U.S. Attorneys (a.k.a. SAUSAs).

What makes them so special?

The position comes with an extra perk: no salary! 

If an attorney lands the gig, they'll have to go without compensation for up to a year. And, they may not be hired after their year of free service, but they can apply for an Assistant U.S. Attorney position after they're done with their year of free labor. (Can't anyone apply?)

Semen-Tainted Yogurt Samples: DNA Gets Grocery Employee Indicted

Most of the work that comes across a BigLaw employee's desk is dry, flavor-less stuff. Rarely do you get to rack up the billable hours reviewing cases of semen-tainted yogurt.

To help spice up your legal life, here's the story of some unlucky shoppers at a New Mexico Sunflower Market that got a taste of employee Anthony Garcia's "special" Greek yogurt.

Garcia had been handing out what was supposed to be yogurt samples at the Sunflower Market in Albuquerque. A woman got a taste of the sample. She realized it wasn't yogurt. It was something else, reports KASA-TV.

The yogurt was actually tainted with Garcia's semen, a fact that was verified through a DNA test, KASA-TV reports. Now, Garcia has been indicted by the federal grand jury.

Thomas M. Cooley Law School Sues Law Firm, Bloggers for Defamation

If you remember the AutoAdmit/xoxohth lawsuit back in 2007, you've probably been waiting for Thomas M. Cooley Law School to get in on the internet defamation action.

Well, the Cooley lawsuits are here, and the school is suing the law firm of Kurzon Strauss LLP and four anonymous bloggers, all of whom have accused the administration of defrauding the student body.

Wait, aren't all law schools a scam?

Fox News Blames 'Fee Hungry' Firms for Spike in M&A Class Actions

Taking a break from attacking liberals, Fox Business recently focused its propaganda machine on "fee-hungry law firms" that file M&A class actions against unsuspecting big businesses on behalf of shareholders.

While the profession certainly has its share of overzealous money grubbers, Fox's analysis of the spike in M&A shareholder lawsuits curiously forgets to mention another, perhaps more prominent, cause:

Greedy executives.

Legal Industry Shrinking: US Lost 2,600 More Legal Jobs in June

Though there have been reports that some firms have hired their entire 2010 summer associate classes, the Bureau of Labor Statistics' June employment report tells a tale of legal jobs that continue to disappear.

The month of June saw the legal services industry's biggest loss this year, shedding another 2,600 jobs according to the report.

And though there was some glimmer of hope in May, even those semi-positive numbers have been revised to subtract another 500 jobs from the profession.

British Firm Allen & Overy to Open DC Office with O'Melveny Hires

Guess where British firm Allen & Overy will be moving next? DC!

That's right, the British will once again be invading our nation's capitol, this time staffing their new office with some top-tier hires from O'Melveny & Myers.

Part of the "Magic Circle," Allen & Overy will be facing some other UK-style competition in DC as rival firms Clifford Chance and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer are already in DC. Allen & Overy's only office right now is in New York.

Georgia Prosecutor Quits the Law to Sell Popsicles

Nicholas J. Carse shall henceforth be referred to as the King of Pops, and he shall be forever worshipped as a member of the elite group known as The Ones Who Got Away.

A 2008 graduate of Georgia State University, the assistant prosecutor in Gwinnett County, Georgia has followed his dreams, leaving his hard-to-come-by job in favor of selling gourmet popsicles with his brother.

Jealous much?

Woman Traffic Judge Takes Photo of Man at Urinal, Bites Fla. Cop

Rhonda Hollander, 47, is a female traffic magistrate and attorney from Florida.

She also did something most legally-trained professionals would not do: take pictures of men at men's room urinal.

Okay, that should be clarified. Hollander did something most people, regardless of their legal training, would probably never do.

Paul Ceglia's Facebook Suit: DLA Piper Withdraws

Paul Ceglia claims that he owns half of Facebook. And, to get his fair share, he has a veritable army behind him: the attorneys of DLA Piper, a 4,200 attorney firm with global presence. BigLaw's got your back, Ceglia!

Wait, BigLaw doesn't have your back. DLA Piper has withdrawn from representing Ceglia in his Facebook suit. DLA Piper hasn't said why they have withdrawn from the case due to attorney-client privilege, reports CNet.

But, one can definitely still speculate.