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October 2014 Archives

'How To Get Away With Murder' Review: Season 1, Episode 6

Last week, "HTGAWM" taught us all about jury selection, jury tampering, and jury nullification. This week, we left the juries behind to get a crash course in appellate litigation and what Wait List Wes looks like just after he's showered. So, you know, the important things. (As always: Spoiler alert!)

Instead of a trial, this week, the Keating Five -- which sounds like a group of people being prosecuted for taking bribes (because they were) -- handled an appeal. (Or is it a habeas petition? Eh, it's all the same, right?) It's up to the gang to set a convicted murderer free.

#DearFindLaw: Which Bar Association(s) Should Law Students Join?

#DearFindLaw - Advice for New Lawyers and Law Students from @FindLawLP

This week on #DearFindLaw, we're presented with the issue of joining a bar association while in law school.

There are many bar associations to choose from, and if you're a law student, you've probably got to join one eventually, right? After all, it's not a "cocktail party" if it's just you and your dog alone in your apartment.

So how can bar association memberships pay off for law students, and which one(s) are worth the annual dues? Here's what you need to know:

10 Things to Do After Getting Bar Results, Pass or Fail

It's bar results season! On Tuesday, New York dropped results a day earlier last year, and weeks earlier than expected, reports Above the Law. Californians are going to be waiting in agony for at least a few more weeks. If you're from one of the flyover states, the length of your torture may vary, but the significance of the moment won't: This is the biggest test of your life.

And while many are understandably excited, others are recovering from a hangover with nothing but sorrow and months of bar prep ahead of them. Once the caffeine and aspirin kicks in, you're going to want to get to work, whether you passed or failed.

Here's the game plan for both:

5 Things Lawyers Can Learn From Fantasy Football

I only just started playing fantasy football this year. I knew it was a thing people did, and they enjoyed it, so I thought I'd give it a try. I enlisted some friends and we created a league. Fair warning, though: I know almost nothing about football. I just know that fantasy football is fun.

And, truthfully, it turns out watching football can be fun. But fantasy football in particular carries a lot of lessons for lawyers.

What lessons, you ask? Here are five:

Are Law Schools Foolishly Optimistic or Will Demand Rebound?

I see skies of blue. And clouds of white. Optimistic law schools. Ignoring their perilous plight.

For the past few years, we've seen ever-decreasing law school applications and LSAT test administrations. Fewer and fewer undergraduates are looking to the law as the next step, largely because this is a profession largely lacking in lucrative or meaningful opportunities. For the vast majority of law graduates, you're going to end up with a middling salary working in construction defect litigation, not as Judith Clark or Dana Latham. (Look 'em up, you've got plenty of time between cover letters.)

And yet, according to a Kaplan survey released Tuesday, admissions officers have stars in their eyes. Are they right?

25 Things You'll Need When Applying for the Bar Exam

The bar exam sucks. But you know what sucks almost as much? Filling out the application for the bar exam.

Because states want to make sure they aren't admitting a three-time felon or any other deviants, they make you provide an insane amount of personal information that you probably don't have access to, like the name of your supervisor at your two-month-long pizza delivery gig back in high school (a guy who certainly doesn't work there anymore).

It's a nightmare. And it's expensive as hell, even more so if you take the time to fill out your application carefully and the deadline passes. We've been through it, some of us multiple times, so we thought that a big list of (hopefully) everything you'll need for the application (besides cash) would come in handy. (H/T to the Virginia Board of Bar Examiners for providing many of these.) Of course, each state has its own requirements, but this checklist should cover almost everything:

5 Dos and Don'ts for Law Office Halloween Costumes

Halloween is a special time of year. It's possibly the only time when you can come to your law office dressed however you like -- within reason, of course.

In the interest of public service for our fellow legal professionals, we'd like to offer some advice on things you should, and should not, do when dressing up for work this Halloween:

1. Do Make Your Costume Law-Related

With over a thousand years of legal tradition, you should come to work dressed as something law-related, like a judge or -- heaven forbid -- a law-related pun like "Commerce Claus" or "Habeas Corpses." Justice Scalia might make a good costume, and, as always, you can still go as Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer.

Women Lawyers Group Urges Death Penalty for NBC's 'Bad Judge'

Let's be clear: NBC's "Bad Judge" will probably not last more than one season. Our review of the half-hour legal comedy's pilot could be summed up in one word -- awful -- and we're not alone in our sentiments. More importantly for the network, the ratings are terrible.

If all that didn't ensure the show's demise, this might help: The Miami-Dade chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers (FAWL) has sent a letter to the network, asking it to shelve the show, which it says "depicts a female judge as unethical, lazy, crude, hyper-sexualized, and unfit to hold such an esteemed position of power," reports the ABA Journal.

'How To Get Away With Murder' Review: Season 1, Episode 5

And then there was "HTGAWM" Episode 5. Is anyone still watching this show? We are, though my editor is nearing his breaking point. Shondaland, where everything works out perfectly for unethical lawyers and their clients, and where everyone is having lots of sex, isn't for everyone. Anyway, if you're just now tuning in, we have recaps and reviews of all of the episodes. Now, back to Episode 5 -- SPOILERS FOLLOW.

Who's our Monster Client of the Week? A creepy teenage kid who shot his dad in the back, killing him. But don't worry: He did it for his mom, who was being beaten by his dad -- a cop. As for the ongoing murder mystery, the one that Goth Girl (Rebecca) has been charged with, we don't seem to have gotten any closer to figuring out who the real murderer is, unless the obvious choice (Prof. Annalise Keating's husband, whose body her students are trying to dispose of in various flash-forward clips) is it.

Mr. Keating, by the way, was sending pics of his privates to the dead girl and admitted to a wee little affair.

'Cannibal Cop, Esq.'? Gilberto Valle Looking at Law School: Reports

He knows police procedure. He's not intimidated by the darker side of humanity. He has an intimate familiarity with the criminal defense now too. And he has name recognition.

Ex-NYPD Officer Gilberto Valle was once convicted of conspiring to murder (as in, to cook and eat) his wife; the conviction was later overturned, as the judge felt Valle was simply writing about his fantasies online. Valle was however, convicted of illegally accessing a police database, a minor crime that carried less than a year in jail and likely wouldn't be an automatic bar to the bar.

The bar? That may be exactly what the so-called "Cannibal Cop" has in mind, reports the New York Daily News.

Viral Legend 'Marlins Man' Is a Lawyer Obsessed With Live Sports

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching my dear Kansas City Royals run through yet another team in the playoffs (we won't talk about last night) when I noticed a curious sight: Amidst a sea of blue paraphernalia, there was a lone man in neon Florida Marlins orange. And not only was he wearing the gear of a team that was nowhere near the playoffs, but he had a front-row seat directly behind the catcher.

Weird. And when I looked at Twitter, he was on the "Trending" list.

It happened again last night, much to the chagrin of Royals team officials. Once again, in the sea of blue, was Marlins Man in his neon orange jersey and hat. This time, because it was the World Series, "Marlins Man" attracted even more attention from the media.

Who is "Marlins Man"? He's a worker's compensation attorney from Florida who might just hold the record for the most playoff and championship sports games attended.

12 Salacious Notes From Pa.'s Supreme Court Porn Scandal

This is still one of the most ridiculous scandals of all time: A Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice years ago sent pornographic emails, using a personal account, to his friends, some of whom worked in the Office of the Attorney General, making the communications arguably ex-parte. And we thought that was it: a handful of dirty emails.

Justice Seamus McCaffery, however, is now suspended. The war of words has escalated between him and Chief Justice Ronald Castille, and has spilled over to personal insults in published opinions. In addition, rumors of ticket-fixing, an unethical referral fee arrangement, and more are circulating like buzzards above McCaffery's career.

The scandal just went from boring to arguably the greatest judicial scandal of our time. (It's certainly the most entertaining, especially now that they are bickering in court opinions.) Here are 12 quick notes from our exhaustive coverage:

Lawyers: How to Get Upset at Work Without Getting Fired

Of all the places to get angry, work is probably the worst. Granted, you can't believe the partner just said you have to come in over the weekend. And look at this: Opposing counsel is categorically denying all your interrogatories. They can't all be vague, overbroad, compound, and burdensome!

It's times like these when you just want to scream, or hit something, or both. Stop for a second, though: There are better things you could be doing than preparing to get fired. Here are five suggestions:

#DearFindLaw: Study Groups; Why 1Ls Should Be Thinking About Summer

#DearFindLaw - Advice for New Lawyers and Law Students from @FindLawLP

Today's #DearFindLaw deals with 1L dilemmas. Now that you're getting the hang of law school, should you join or form one of these study groups everyone's talking about? And while you're at it, is it too early to think about this summer?

Are Study Groups Worth It?

Law school study groups will be forever memorialized in popular culture thanks to the smarmy, backstabbing students in "The Paper Chase" -- aka "The Only Movie About Law School, Other Than 'Legally Blonde.'"

In reality, even though there's not that much backstabbing going on at law school anymore, study groups do remain a viable method for learning the material, especially for people who learn better by talking than by listening.

Student Loans 103: Prioritizing Payments (or Which to Pay First)

OK, you've finally started getting your loans in order. You used the National Student Loan Database System to see what you've borrowed from the feds. You've consolidated, if appropriate, and picked an income-based repayment plan so that your payments are manageable. You're also up-to-date on your monthly payments on any private loans.

But now your career is taking off and you have a bit of surplus cash. And instead of letting the interest build on those loans, you're ready to start dumping your excess cash on one or more of them.

Which one do you pick first? That depends on a few considerations.

Calif. Lawyer Gets 6 Months for Planting Drugs in PTA Mom's Car

At Greedy Associates, we love it when lawyers behave badly, whether it's a history of torture porn or dressing up like Thomas Jefferson to defend themselves from ineffective assistance claims. But an attorney "conspiring with his (attorney) wife to frame a school volunteer by planting drugs in her car," as the Orange County Register described it, is a new experience for us.

Kent and Jill Easter were both lawyers in Irvine, California, located in one of the state's Republican strongholds, Orange County. Apparently, a school volunteer, Kelli Peters, briefly left the Easters' son alone at school. The Easters also misinterpreted the volunteer's comment about the son being "slow to line up" as a comment on his intelligence.

OK, no big deal, right?

10 Facts About Ron Klain, Lawyer-Turned-'Ebola Czar'

Ron Klain has served as Chief of Staff to two Vice Presidents: Al Gore and Joseph Biden. He's a Democratic Party bigwig. Heck, he was even a Supreme Court clerk once upon a time.

Now? Klain just been appointed to the position of Ebola "czar" (formally known as the one-man "response coordinator"). He's set to begin his new duties Wednesday, CNN reports.

Here are a few fun facts about the guy with the worst title in the entire Obama administration, courtesy of the questionable source that is Wikipedia:

Shame on Seamus? Pa. Justice McCaffery Apologizes for Porn Emails

Look, his name makes for a clever title, but much like the Kansas gubernatorial candidate who once upon a time (allegedly) got a lap dance, I still have no idea why this is a controversy.

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery looks at porn, as do 66 percent of all men. McCaffery emailed porn and crude jokes back-and-forth with his buddies -- many times, in fact. More than 230 emails were sent or received between him and his buddies, many of whom were using their state government e-mail accounts. McCaffery, at least per previous accounts, was using his personal e-mail address.

But the Chief Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is trying to take him down. McCaffery calls it a "cooked up controversy."

'How To Get Away With Murder' Review: Season 1, Episode 4

Episode 4 of "How to Get Away with Murder" teased that we wouldn't believe Professor Keating's last nine words -- and the folks at ABC's marketing department didn't disappoint! After an episode full of tantalizing securities fraud, we got precious little of the overarching "Mr. Professor Keating will be dead in seven weeks" story line. In case you missed it, check out last week's Episode 3 recap. Oh, and spoiler alerts. Obvee.

The crime of the week this week is -- surprise! -- insider trading, not murder. Remember: Keating teaches a criminal law class, not murder class, and insider trading is some kind of crime, so there you go. Anyway, Elizabeth Perkins (of "Big" and "Weeds" fame) owns a securities firm and she's accused of trading on inside information. (Oddly missing is a discussion of the different theories of insider trading, but I guess not everyone is as interested in "misappropriation" as I am. Go figure.)

For Dictionary Day, 7 More Words Only Federal Judges Use

In honor of National Dictionary Day, we're pleased to offer a sequel to last year's post about words only federal judges use. These are words that you'd be hard pressed to find outside judicial opinions or the legal environment -- because, for some reason, lawyers like using archaic and complex language.

1. Pellucid.

Sounds like: Lucid, but with some pells before it (whatever those are).

Made cool by: Fellow blogger William Peacock's favorite judge, Bruce Selya of the First Circuit, describing how crystal-clear a trial court judge was when explaining to a defendant that he was waiving a right to appeal as part of his plea agreement.

It means: "Admitting light without diffusion or distortion."

Synonym: Clear.

5 Lessons Lawyers Can Learn From My Kansas City Royals

Yesterday, my Royals, against pretty overwhelming odds, made it to the World Series. A team that hasn't made the playoffs in 29 years made the World Series. A team that seemed to ignore every advancement in baseball knowledge and statistics, somehow, made it to the World Series.

It's a Cinderella story. It's a movie in the making. It's every kid's (or blogger's) dream. It's every sports cliche ever uttered -- and I'm loving it. And it's also a great lesson in perseverance and hope for every lawyer and law graduate out there who is struggling with unrealized potential and unfulfilled dreams.

Here are a few thoughts, and way too many baseball references:

Why You Need to Learn to Say 'No' to Partners, Senior Associates

Young associates work a lot. They're asked to do this, they're asked to do that -- and they feel like they need to say "yes" to everything in order to continue earning the boss' favor (that's the law firm partners, in this case).

But good relationship management involves establishing early on what each party expects from the other. This means learning the fine art of saying "no." By letting the partners know early on in the relationship that you'll push back if you have a really good reason, you let them know that you're not a pushover and, while you'll gladly take on additional work if you can, you'll be assertive about when you can't anymore.

So in honor of National Boss' Day (October 16), here's a bit of advice on the fine art of learning to say "no" to a partner or senior associate:

NYC Criminal Defense Bribery Scandal: A Reminder About Referrals

Last month, three criminal defense lawyers and a paralegal were in need of one of their own after they were indicted for allegedly bribing court staff to pass along wealthy clients. Lawyers Dwane Smith, 56; Benjamin Yu, 36; and Jae Lee, 41; along with paralegal Jose Nunez, 47, were charged after the court staffer became a cooperating witness, reports the New York Daily News.

That probe expanded this week, when investigators' eyes turned to Yu's former mentor, 70-year-old attorney Paul Liber. Though Liber and his lawyer both point out that he has not been charged, his name came up repeatedly during the investigation, reports the New York Post.

Lawyers: Why You Shouldn't Embellish Your Resume

By now, we all know that you shouldn't just out-and-out lie on your resume. You shouldn't make up a university or a job experience; employers can easily find out about those. But what about taking a little bit of poetic license with your job descriptions? Like inflating the importance of a job you had?

Your goal as a resume embellisher is to make the interviewer think that you did something much more important than you did, without ever saying specifically what you did. This requires being a little vague to begin with -- which isn't in your favor even before the interview phase because employers don't want vague statements in resumes or cover letters; they want specific, concrete examples.

Still, many people do it. According to a 2008 CareerBuilder survey, 38 percent of employees had lied about their job responsibilities. But the consequences if you're caught can be pretty severe.

Student Loans 102: Making Monthly Payments Affordable (IBR, PAYE)

Raise your hand if, at some point, you got slapped with a student loan bill for more than $1,000 per month.

If you haven't yet, and took out loans for law school, it's only a matter of time before some idiot loan servicer sends you a bill requesting more than half of your take-home pay. And for many people, their response will be to utter a few choice profanities and then to ignore the letter.

Don't. Default is bad, at least if you ever want to have a respectable credit score, own a home, or get out of debt. Instead, take a look at the available income-driven repayment plans. If you're working in public interest, your debt will disappear in 10 to 15 years. If not, you're looking at reduced payments until right around the time your child goes to college. Funny how that works, isn't it?

Last week, we talked about consolidating your loans to make them more manageable. Today, we'll look at reducing your monthly payments on your federal loans:

10 Ideas for Next Fall's Lawyer TV Shows

Between "The Good Wife," "How To Get Away With Murder," and now the lamentable "Bad Judge," it looks like lawyer shows are making a comeback -- but they're not all that good.

As a public service to Hollywood, we decided to come up with 10 ideas for lawyer TV shows that aren't any worse than what's on TV right now. (By the way, we expect to see a check in the mail come pilot season.)

1. "Serve and Protect."

By day, the main character is a tough-as-nails New York City cop. By night, he's a tough-as-nails waiter in a hipster Brooklyn gastropub. "No, you can't sub kale chips for truffle-infused tater tots! Not on my watch!"

#DearFindLaw: My Laptop Just Died ... Help!

#DearFindLaw - Advice for New Lawyers and Law Students from @FindLawLP

Last week, I got a call from my big brother, a 1L at Louisiana State University. It seems that, while his laptop was sitting in the library, it overheated and fried the motherboard. Unfortunately, he didn't follow his little bro's advice and use cloud storage as a back-up.

He wants to know what to do, besides start listening to his brother. Here's how to get back to business, assuming you have a PC (Mac users ... just head to the nearest Genius Bar):

'How To Get Away With Murder' Review: Season 1, Episode 3

Previously, on "How To Get Away With Murder": Lots of murders, the least accurate depiction of law school ever, and sexy sexing for nearly everyone. See Episode 1 and Episode 2 recaps for more. Oh, and though it may be obvious: SPOILERS FOLLOW.

Episode 3 begins with more fun with the dead body (Prof. Annalise Keating's husband, Prof. Sam Keating), but mainly focuses on another case -- the hooker house mom who was once a domestic terrorist. If that (sans hooker) sounds like Patty Hearst, you and 300 fake 1Ls think alike, because they discuss the Hearst case and defense. This is your "defendant of the week" plotline, one that has no surprises whatsoever.

The real meat of the episode is WLW's (Wait-List Wes') possibly quixotic quest to help Goth Girl neighbor (Rebecca). The university is trying to get Keating's law firm to represent its star quarterback, who is quite obviously full of it and seems to have had something to do with the ongoing murder mystery (the dead girl from the first two episodes -- we know, there's a lot of murder in "HTGAWM"). WLW breaks the rules and does everything he can to rescue the reluctant Rebecca, but will he succeed?

5 Things Lawyers Can Learn From 'Twin Peaks'

Some of us were ecstatic at the news that Showtime would resurrect "Twin Peaks," the cult TV show that lasted only two seasons on ABC in the early 90s, yet influenced an entire generation of television, from "The X Files" to "Lost." Even more good news: Series creators David Lynch and Mark Frost are set to write and direct each of the nine new episodes, scheduled to air in 2016.

For the uninitiated, "Twin Peaks" was nominally the story of Dale Cooper (Kyle MacLaughlin), an FBI agent sent to the sleepy Pacific Northwest logging town of Twin Peaks to investigate a murder. The show was really about how the small town is not what it seems, a television trope that it's credited with creating.

Are there any lessons you can glean from Agent Cooper, Sheriff Harry S. Truman, and the rest of the "Twin Peaks" gang? (If you haven't seen the show, and don't want it spoiled, then go read something else.)

NOLA Judges' Pricey CLE Trips on Court's Dime: Greedy or All Good?

Few would argue that Continuing Legal Education (CLE) requirements are important for judges and attorneys alike. And even if they're not, if those of us who are members of the bar (but not on the bench) have to do them, well, everyone should suffer the misery.

Except, not all CLEs are miserable. Conferences can be fun. Really, really fun if the descriptions of these extravagant CLE trips that New Orleans judges frequent are any indication: a Panama City (Panama, not Florida) resort, trips to the Big Apple, a Montana resort, and more.

Of course, they need their CLEs. So are they taking this little employee perk a little too far?

1st-Year Associates: Are You Impressing Your Boss?

It's not enough to merely go to the office and do what you're supposed to. In a law firm, young associates have to do a little bit extra and impress their bosses -- senior associates and/or partners. After all, anyone can do what they're told, but if you want to really succeed at a law firm, you've got to go above and beyond the call of duty.

So how do you know if you're impressing the supervisors and higher-ups at your firm? Here are five questions to ask yourself:

As N.Y. Considers Uniform Bar Exam (With a Twist), Iowa Declines

This came out of nowhere: The New York State Bar is considering adopting the Uniform Bar Exam (with a small twist). If it does, New York will be the largest state, by far, to do so, and it'll mean big things for the future of the UBE. It'll also mean big things for law grads and lawyers who want more job portability, as the UBE would cover 15 states if adopted in New York.

Meantime, Iowa, which was considering the UBE and a diploma privilege for in-state graduates, declined to adopt either. It'll be an old-fashioned, state-specific bar exam, at least for now.

#DearFindLaw: Should You Use Case Summaries for Law School?

#DearFindLaw - Advice for New Lawyers and Law Students from @FindLawLP

We're getting into the second month of law school, and 1Ls have learned how the Socratic method works, what their professors want to hear, and presumably how to study.

So does this mean that it's time to slough off and use case supplements -- especially those with convenient case summaries?

Is there any value in using case summaries? Or are there other study aids you should be using in your quest to be No. 1?

Student Loans 101: Consolidating Your Public, Private Loans

What's the biggest problem facing graduates today? It's not the job market, which really, really sucks. It's the massive load of debt which will stalk them for the next few decades, making it difficult to buy a home, go on vacation, or even save for their own kids' college funds. Standard monthly repayments, for someone with six-figure debt, probably top $1,000 per month. If you're not in BigLaw, that's a massive expenditure.

Fortunately, there are options -- so many, in fact, that it's hard to know exactly what to do with your loans. That's why we're going to spend the next few weeks sharing what we've learned (the hard way) about managing student loans, starting with loan consolidation.

'Caveman Lawyer' and 4 Other Law-Related Halloween Costumes

Halloween is quickly approaching, and the closer it gets, the harder it's going to be to find that "Iron Man" costume you desperately wanted. But being that you're a lawyer, you should make your costume legal-themed. Because why not? When everyone else is coming as a sexy velociraptor*, you'll win the prize for originality.

* Author's note: "sexy velociraptor" was initially written as a joke, but I Googled it out of curiosity and, sure enough, this online costume store offers five "sexy dinosaur" costumes, including a "sexy Barney" costume. Because of course they do.

1 Year Later, How Are Those Rural Attorney Programs Working Out?

It seems like a perfect fit: Only 57 percent of the Class of 2013 found full-time, long-term lawyer gigs. And in rural areas of America, there are a whole lot of people (20 percent of the population) and not a lot of lawyers (2 percent). What's more, many of those lawyers are retiring, leaving entire counties without any counsel.

This is why many states are pushing (or bribing) recent grads to go rural with their practice, and it's why the ABA announced a Legal Access Job Corps last year that would do the same.

One year later, how are those programs working out? And how are debt-laden grads surviving in the rural areas?

Just How Bad Is NBC's 'Bad Judge'? Awful

"Not bad meaning bad, but bad meaning good..."? Nope, NBC's "Bad Judge" is just bad. As in awful. (Spoilers to follow.)

The pilot begins with a clear shot of Kate Walsh's (Judge Wright's) posterior. She apparently partied so hard that she is now sleeping in her glittery underwear with her butt in the air. She wakes up late, does the "I'm late for school!" montage that we've all seen so many times, and then picks up a pregnancy test on the way to court before taking the bench hung over, and eventually taking a witness into her chambers -- no pun intended, since the bailiff walked in on them. Get it? It's because she's the Bad Judge!

And then the show's other half of the plot appears: Despite her supervisor's pleading, she just cares way too much about a young urban youth whose parents she sent away. She spends the episode balancing her caretaking efforts with her drinking and judging. But don't worry: By the end of the incredibly sitcomy sitcom, she's in a bar, rocking denim booty shorts, shamelessly getting hammered in front of her coworkers and boss, none of whom seem to mind, because she's just quirky and lovable!

'How To Get Away With Murder' Review: Season 1, Episode 2

Last week, we were introduced to Professor Viola Davis and her star pupil Dean Thomas, late of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry (which apparently doesn't have a law school). This week, Professor Davis Keating helps Steven Weber -- also known as "Hey, aren't you the guy from 'Wings'?" -- escape conviction for murdering his wife. Needless to say, spoiler alerts!

Episode 2 of "How To Get Away With Murder" transforms the show from a hybrid law school/legal procedural into a full-on legal procedural. None of the members of Professor Keating's law clinic seems to have any other law school classes. Torts? Contracts? Anything? Or is this the law school's new "no thanks, I'm just interested in criminal law" program?

Anyway, this episode involves a wealthy Steven Weber who ends up with a dead wife. He's on the hook for murder and enlists the help of the Keating law firm. Most of that is uninteresting -- it's standard "Law & Order" and "CSI" stuff. More interesting is the slow reveal in the flash-forwards of what's going on 2 1/2 months in the future, when Dean Thomas (as Wait-List Wes) and the other law clinic students are skulking around in the dark with the dead body of Professor Keating's husband.

Novice Attorney Can Represent Capital Murder Defendant: Texas Judge

Just over a year after receiving his law license, Texas criminal defense attorney Maverick Ray -- his real name -- is representing a client in a capital murder case. One year out of school, what were you doing? Yeah, that's what I thought.

Ray, a 2012 graduate of South Texas College of Law in Houston, is the lead attorney for Howard Wayne Lewis, who was indicted by a grand jury for the 2013 murder of his infant son.

Semi-Online Law School: 5 Reasons to Avoid This Good Experiment

So, somebody sent me this earlier this week. I'm not sure how we missed this last year -- I try to never miss an opportunity to mock a "fix law school" or "reinvent law school" proposal -- but somehow, some way, it got lost in the stack.

Anyway, if you're interested in a four-year hybrid online-offline law school that costs the same as traditional law school, you have only a couple of months left to apply to the William Mitchell Hybrid Program. And while online legal education, as a means of delivering cost-effective degrees that can be obtained from anywhere (rural folks, twenty-somethings living with parents, military, etc.) is a good concept, there are a few reasons why this particular program may not be your best bet. Here are five you may want to consider:

5 Tips for a New Lawyer's 1st Professional Dinner Party

When professionals get together, they have dinner parties. Yes, it's time for the world of adult conversations, cocktails, and meal courses. As a newly minted associate, you'll need to mingle with colleagues in this time-honored bourgeois ritual, but if you've never hosted a dinner party, it can seem daunting.

Never despair: We're here to help! Check out these five tips:

Studying for the Bar While Working Full-Time: 3 Tips

Here's a tip for first-timers who are planning on working full-time while studying for the bar: Don't do it. Failing doesn't guarantee that you'll have a crappy career, but it certainly doesn't help your short-term and long-term earning potential. Do anything and everything in your power to, at minimum, work just part-time, with a week off before the actual test.

But, if you wish to proceed, or if you're a retaker, a second state/Uniform Bar Exam taker, or a candlestick maker, we've got a few ideas on how to balance your full-time with your bar study time. Here are three tips that can pay off: