Apple files trade commission complaint against HTC

[JURIST] Apple [corporate website; Bloomberg backgrounder] filed a complaint against HTC [corporate website; Bloomberg backgrounder] Friday with the US International Trade Commission [official website] (USITC) for patent infringement related to scrolli...

Law Decriminalizing Sexting by Minors Nearing Final Legislative Approval

New Jersey is a step away from having the state attorney general and the courts create a diversionary program as an alternative to criminal prosecution of juveniles who transmit explicit photos of themselves or other minors in a practice known as "sext...

Supreme Court rules in Confrontation Clause case

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website; JURIST news archive] on Thursday ruled [opinion, PDF] 5-4 in Bullcoming v. New Mexico that the Confrontation Clause [Cornell LII backgrounders] does not allow laboratory reports containing testimonial ce...

Use of GPS Data Against Cabbie Not Privacy Violation, Judge Says

Prosecutors' use of global positioning system data to track the movements of a New York City taxi driver accused of overcharging almost 300 passengers did not violate the driver's Fourth Amendment right to privacy, a Manhattan judge has ruled.

House version of patent reform differs from Senate's over fee diversion

Bills passed by the House and Senate would both change the U.S. patent system from a first-to-invent system into a first-to-file system, but there's lingering controversy about whether the patent office can keep all its fees and about provisions allowi...

USITC rules HTC infringed two Apple patents; HTC will appeal

[JURIST] Apple [corporate website; Bloomberg backgrounder] prevailed in a complaint [JURIST report] against HTC [corporate website; Bloomberg backgrounder] on Saturday when the US International Trade Commission (USITC) [official website] ruled against ...

Australia's Litigation-Funding Giant Looks Abroad

IMF (Australia) Ltd. pioneered the litigation-funding business in Australia, the only country where it truly has become an industry. Now, IMF is eyeing the U.S., the U.K., Hong Kong, Singapore and other common law jurisdictions. But can it transform th...

Federal judge blocks South Dakota abortion law with 72-hour waiting period

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the District of South Dakota [official website] issued a preliminary injunction [order, PDF] Thursday blocking a South Dakota abortion regulation [HB 1217] requiring a 72-hour waiting period. Judge Karen S...

WaMu Defendants To Settle Securities Claims for $208.5 Million

Defendants targeted by shareholders of defunct Washington Mutual -- including the company's former directors and officers, investment banks that underwrote WMI stock, and the company's auditor -- have agreed to pay $208.5 million to settle securities f...

Edwards Angell, Wildman Harrold in Advanced Merger Talks

Emphasizing that there is no final deal yet -- and no formal agreement that would go to a partnership vote -- Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge and Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon said on Wednesday that the two firms are in advanced merger talks.

Justice Department's Top Antitrust Lawyer to Join Cravath

In a major addition to one of Cravath's core practice areas, Christine Varney, a key player in the Obama administration's efforts to shore up antitrust enforcement, is leaving the Justice Department and will join the firm's New York office on Sept. 6.

International labor body passes new convention to protect rights of domestic workers

[JURIST] The International Labor Organization (ILO) [official website] adopted a new convention [text, PDF] at its annual conference in Geneva Thursday to protect domestic workers' labor rights. The 100 Session of the International Labor Conference [of...

Supreme Court denies stay of execution of Mexican national

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Thursday refused [opinion, PDF] to stay the planned execution of Mexican national Humberto Leal Garcia [advocacy website]. When Leal Garcia was arrested for the rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl, ...

House restricts funding for US military operations in Libya

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives [official website] voted Thursday for a measure to restrict funding for US military operations in Libya but voted down a measure to entirely defund it. In another contradictory message from the House on approval...

Feds Concede DOMA Fight in Bankruptcy Court

The decision by the DOJ, led by AG Eric Holder Jr., and congressional Republicans leaves intact an order by 20 judges allowing a married same-sex couple to file bankruptcy jointly.

Dechert Seeks Dismissal of Government's False Claims Act Mortgage Suit Against Deutsche Bank

Deutsche Bank is launching its first formal counterattack against the $1 billion False Claims Act suit filed by the federal government, arguing that it shouldn't be liable for the activity of its MortgageIT subsidiary.

Violent crime rate along US-Mexico border declining: USA Today

[JURIST] Rates of violent crime along the US-Mexico border [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] have been declining for several years, according to a USA Today analysis [text; interactive materials] released Thursday. The study indicated that, on average, US ...

Rhode Island Senate approves civil union bill

[JURIST] The Rhode Island Senate [official website] on Wednesday approved a same-sex civil union bill by a vote of 21-16 [press release]. The bill [2011 - H6103, PDF] is identical to a version of the bill passed in the House of Representatives [official website], and Governor Lincoln Chafee [official website] is expected to sign the bill into law. Modeled after similar legislation in Illinois, Delaware and Hawaii [JURIST reports], the bill defines a civil union as "a legal union between...

Judge Ware Says Walker's Sexuality No Reason to Recuse on Prop 8

The judge who heard the Proposition 8 case didn't need to recuse himself because he is in a same-sex relationship, a federal judge has ruled, finding it "not reasonable to presume" a judge can't be impartial "solely because, as a citizen, the judge cou...

Motorcycle Rumble: Two Attorney-Members at Odds Over Club's Name and Logo

There was a time when motorcycle "clubs" settled their internal disputes with knives and chains. But the HardRiders Motorcycle Club and two of its attorney-members will settle their differences inside a Texas courthouse.

Sullivan & Cromwell Hits RIM with Smartphone Infringement Suit for Dolby International

Dolby International has sued Research in Motion for allegedly infringing patents that are essential to the BlackBerry's audio capabilities in a suit that goes to show that smartphones are going to be the IP litigation bar's meal ticket for a long time ...

Rights group asks judge to block Texas abortion law requiring sonogram

[JURIST] The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) [advocacy website] filed a motion for a preliminary injunction [text, PDF] Thursday to block a new Texas requiring a woman to have a sonogram with the doctor describing the fetus in detail before having...

Quinn Emanuel Wins $64 Million for Rosen Capital in Credit Crunch-Related Arbitration Against Merrill Lynch

A Financial Industry Regulatory Authority panel has awarded Rosen Capital $63.7 million over "unexpected margin calls" that Merrill Lynch made on two hedge funds in 2008. The award is believed to be the fifth largest ever for a customer in a securities...

Phila. Judge Rules Punitive Damages Warranted in HRT Case

A Philadelphia judge has found that a $6 million punitive damages award in a hormone-replacement therapy case was supported by drugmaker Wyeth's campaign to "distract physicians" from the increased risk of breast cancer allegedly posed by HRT drugs.

Cozen Picks Up 19 Lawyers from New York IP Boutique

Cozen O'Connor has recruited 19 lawyers, including five senior partners, from 27-lawyer Cohen Pontani Lieberman & Pavane. The moves, effective July 1, include name partners Thomas Pontani, Martin Pavane and Lance Lieberman.

Bobblehead Alert: It's Clarence Thomas' Turn

Just in time for his 20th anniversary on the U.S. Supreme Court in October, Justice Clarence Thomas has become the eighth modern-day justice to be memorialized with a bobblehead created by the unconventional law review Green Bag.

Law professor cites 'Lawrence' in defending polygamous family

The family from a hit TV show has filed a federal suit challenging Utah's anti-bigamy law. Law professor Jonathan Turley, who is representing them pro bono, says he has questioned the treatment of polygamists in the aftermath of the landmark U.S. Supre...

Top Patent Litigator Leaving Weil to Launch Plaintiffs-Side Firm

Matthew Powers, co-chair of litigation at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, is leaving the firm after 18 years to start his own plaintiffs shop. News of the split came the same day as the announcement that two other patent litigators had left Weil for Paul Weiss...

DOJ Conducting Criminal Investigation of Deaths of Two Detainees

Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said Thursday that a special prosecutor is conducting a criminal investigation of the deaths of two detainees in U.S. custody as part of an examination of CIA interrogation abuses.

DHS demands international consensus on cybersecurity

[JURIST] US Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) [official website] Janet Napolitano [official profile] on Friday criticized [Reuters] other nations for not advancing and embracing new technology, thus leaving themselves open to attacks from cyber-criminals. At an international security conference in Vienna, Napolitano called for an international legal framework to defend and prosecute threats to cyber security. She declined to address the status of any current investigations. Napolitano was referencing the string of recent cyber "attacks" by "hacker-activist" groups Anonymous and...

Reduced state funding threatens foreclosure cases

Special funding that allowed Florida courts to tackle foreclosure backlogs will run out at the end of the month, even as judges are planning for what insiders expect will be a second wave of foreclosures later this year.

Supreme Court rules evidence not excluded when law changes between search and trial

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Thursday ruled [opinion, PDF] 7-2 in Davis v. United States [Cornell LII backgrounder; JURIST report] that when the law for what constitutes a legal search changes between a search and an accompanying...

Supreme Court allows class action suit against Bayer

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Thursday unanimously reversed [opinion, PDF] the lower court in Smith v. Bayer Corp. [Cornell LII backgrounder; JURIST report], allowing a class action lawsuit against the company to proceed. The Court held that under the re-litigation exception of the Anti-Injunction Act [28 USC 2283], a district court exceeded its authority when it enjoined Smith from seeking class certification in state court after denying certification to a similar class. They also declared issues...

Federal judge blocks Idaho anti-union law

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the District of Idaho [official website] has issued a preliminary injunction [ruling text, PDF] blocking the enforcement of an Idaho anti-union law [SB 1007] that bans a union program that subsidizes emplo...

Are law schools opening themselves to deceptive-advertising claims?

Fudging employment statistics is more than an ethical matter for law schools -- it's also a legal one, according to some observers, who have concluded that the Federal Trade Commission could take action against law schools that publish false or decepti...

More bad news for law grads: They're earning less

The employment news just keeps getting worse for freshly minted lawyers. Not only are fewer recent graduates landing law firm jobs, as the National Association for Law Placement reported in June, but they also are earning less than their predecessors.

Baseball commissioner throws a wrench into McCourt divorce mechanism

Three days after Frank and Jamie McCourt reached a settlement in their divorce battle over ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers, MLB commissioner Allan "Bud" Selig has rejected a proposed TV contract with Fox on which the deal had relied.

Coupons help sink second BAR/BRI settlement

A federal judge has refused to sign off on a second settlement in the BAR/BRI antitrust litigation after objectors raised concerns that Kaplan Inc.'s portion of the deal involved providing coupons worth $150 each toward the purchase of future course ma...

Bankruptcy judge approves first payouts to Madoff victims

[JURIST] Judge Burton Lifland of the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York [official website] approved the first settlement payments to victims of the $65 billion Bernard Madoff [JURIST news archive] Ponzi scheme, sending payments o...

Skadden Gets Dismissal of Anadarko Derivative Suit Tied to Deepwater Horizon Spill

In what is likely the first decision dismissing a derivative action tied to the Deepwater Horizon explosion, a Texas judge has dismissed a suit naming 13 directors and officers of Anadarko, which holds a 25 percent stake in the Macondo well that soiled...

Maryland court recognizes spousal privilege for same-sex married couple

[JURIST] A Maryland court ruled Thursday that the spousal privilege preventing spouses from being compelled to testify against one another applies to a lesbian couple married in Washington DC, recognizing the rights of same-sex married [JURIST news arc...

FTC Wins Fat Settlement Over Skinny Lotion Ads

Rubbing lotion on your skin will not make you thin, the Federal Trade Commission reminded us all Wednesday in a $900,000 settlement involving ads for Nivea skin cream that claimed to help "redefine the appearance of your silhouette."

Suit Seeks to Force CNN.com to Accommodate Deaf Users

A class action filed this week in California against Time Warner alleges the media giant's CNN.com subsidiary prevents deaf users from accessing video and multimedia. An attorney at Disability Rights Advocates calls the suit the first of its kind.

Planned Parenthood seeks to block North Carolina from defunding it

[JURIST] Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina (PPCNC) [advocacy website] filed a lawsuit [press release] Thursday to block the enforcement of North Carolina's budget that denies state and federal funds used to subsidize Planned Parenthood famil...

Banks Fail to Block News Aggregator's Reports on Stocks

In a decision that could have broad implications for news aggregation services, the 2nd Circuit ruled Monday that Theflyonthewall.com can report on securities brokerages' stock recommendations as soon as it learns of them, as long as it does not violat...

How's the Job Market for In-House Lawyers? It Depends Who You Ask

The Association of Corporate Counsel's Robin Scullin says that the group's statistics show that corporate law department hiring is going up as more work is being brought in-house. But some consultants haven't noticed any increase in job openings, and m...

Intellectual Ventures Turns to the Courts Again in Licensing Battle

Intellectual Ventures has filed a wide-ranging lawsuit accusing about a dozen companies, including Hynix Semiconductor, Dell and Wal-Mart Stores, of infringing patents used in semiconductor dynamic random access memory.

Federal appeals court rejects challenge to TSA body scans

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website] on Friday unanimously rejected [opinion, PDF] a constitutional challenge to the full-body scans conducted at airports by the Transportation Security Administration...

Ince Freezes Pay Rates for Associates

Ince & Co has become the latest U.K. law firm to opt out of increasing its associate pay bands for the year ahead. In a statement, the firm said it believed the freeze "balances the need to provide a value-for-money service to clients with the need to ...

Court OKs Settlement of Suit Alleging Ciba-Geigy Pollution Devalued Homes

A New Jersey judge has approved a class action settlement, valued by plaintiffs at $20 million, of a 10-year suit over Ciba-Geigy chemicals that allegedly caused groundwater contamination and reduced the value of nearby homes.

Federal appeals court dismisses suit to force nuclear waste storage at Yucca Mountain

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website] on Friday dismissed [opinion, PDF] a case brought by Washington state, South Carolina and other local governments challenging the Depart of Energy (DOE) [official ...

House committee proposes $104 million funding cut for LSC

The Legal Services Corp. is warning that a House committee's proposal to cut its funding by about 26 percent next year could leave thousands of people without legal assistance. The LSC said the cuts would roll back funding to the lowest level since 1999.

Singapore Law Firms Use Perks in Bid to Hold On to Associates

At one top Singapore law firm, lounges provide lawyers Nintendo Wii game consoles and electric massage chairs, while another Singapore firm's "Ministry of Fun" coordinates a social calendar including trips to Thailand, as law firms in the booming count...

Conrad Black to return to prison for one year

[JURIST] Media magnate Conrad Black [CBC profile; JURIST news archive] was ordered to return to prison by the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois [official website] on Friday, to serve 13 more months of his 42 month sentence. Judge ...

Missouri governor will not sign legislation banning abortions after 20 weeks

[JURIST] Missouri Governor Jay Nixon [official website] on Thursday said he will not sign legislation [press release] that would ban abortions [JURIST news archive] after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The measure [HB 213 materials] imposes penalties on doctor...

Federal judge blocks Georgia immigration law

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia [official website] on Monday blocked [order, PDF] two sections of the state's controversial immigration bill [HB 87 text] that was signed into law last month [JURIST report...

Wilmer's Waxman Blasts Farmers' Patent Claims Against Monsanto in Dismissal Motion

Monsanto is apparently taking a broad challenge to its transgenic seed patents seriously enough to pay for a top-shelf defense by Wilmer heavyweights. But why did the company quickly disown an infringement suit filed against Pennsylvania farmers last w...

US Senate passes bill to ease presidential appointments

[JURIST] The US Senate [official website] passed the Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act [bill materials] by 79-20 on Wednesday. The bill exempts 170 minor executive posts and 2,800 posts in the US Public Health Service and Nationa...

D.C. Circuit Vacates Prison Sentence in Health Care Fraud Case

The D.C. Circuit has unanimously vacated a doctor's 53-month prison sentence in a fraud case, saying the trial judge failed to provide a satisfactory reason for bumping up the prison sentence a year above the guideline range.

Human rights lawyer fights prohibitions over use of WikiLeaks documents

A lawyer representing a Guantanamo Bay detainee is challenging as overbroad government prohibitions that restrict access to WikiLeaks documents in pending federal litigation. In court papers, David Remes says the ban reduces counsel's access "to a mere...

Top State Department Lawyer Defends Liu's Nomination to 9th Circuit

During a speech at the American Constitution Society, Harold Koh received a standing ovation after he defended the Obama administration's nomination of Goodwin Liu and questioned a "disorienting" political environment.

Fallout from Wal-Mart case begins

The Supreme Court's blockbuster decision tossing out the biggest discrimination class action in history is already having an impact on the Court's docket -- and in one instance, it is affecting a case that does not seem related, at first blush.

Court tells Obama administration to state its position regarding DADT's constitutionality

The 9th Circuit has ordered the Obama administration to declare for the record whether it intends to defend the constitutionality of "don't ask, don't tell." The move came five days after a motions panel of the same federal appeals court effectively ba...

Shareholders' Claims Narrowed, but Malpractice Suit Against Winston & Strawn May Go Forward

Winston & Strawn must face a $2.5 million malpractice suit from former shareholders of pharmaceutical company Biosynexus for allegedly botching the 2005 sale of the company, a New York judge has ruled.

State Department legal adviser: Obama acting lawfully in Libya

[JURIST] US State Department (DOS) [official website] legal adviser Harold Koh [academic profile] on Tuesday told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) [official website] that President Barack Obama is acting within the law [testimony materials] with respect to US military operations in Libya [JURIST backgrounder]. Koh testified that Obama's conduct is consistent with the Constitution, the 1973 War Powers Resolution [50 USC 1541 et seq.] and international law. Specifically, Koh provided four factors suggesting the current situation in Libya...

Supreme Court Sends Judicial Pay Challenge Back to Federal Circuit

The Supreme Court on Tuesday sent back a constitutional challenge involving federal judges' pay for a second look by the Federal Circuit. The judges' petition for review had been filed in May 2010 and relisted 10 times for consideration in the justices...

Rights group sues to block Kansas abortion licensing laws

[JURIST] The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) [advocacy website] on Tuesday filed a federal lawsuit [press release] challenging licensing and regulation laws for doctors who provide abortions [JURIST news archive] in Kansas. The suit [case backgrou...

With DLA Out of the Fight, Facebook and Gibson Dunn Are Firmly in Control in Ceglia Case

When DLA Piper agreed to take on a case brought by Paul Ceglia, a New York businessman claiming to own 84 percent of Facebook, it transformed the suit from a quirky sideshow into a high-stakes challenge. What happens now that the firm has withdrawn?

Reproductive rights group challenges Texas sonogram before abortion law

[JURIST] The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) [advocacy website] filed a challenge [complaint, PDF] Monday to the newly signed Texas law requiring a sonogram be done before a woman can have an abortion. The CRR filed the lawsuit in the US District Court for the Western District of Texas [official website] on behalf of a class of physicians who perform abortions claiming that the act is unconstitutional because it "profoundly intrudes on the practice of medicine, forces physicians to deliver...

Fairfield Investors Cry Foul over Picard Feeder Fund Deal

Some Fairfield investors are objecting to a proposed settlement between the funds and the Madoff Investment Securities liquidation trustee Irving Picard, arguing that a provision in the settlement is an "abomination" because it would bar their own clai...

EU still open to receiving Guantanamo detainees: report

[JURIST] An EU official told the Miami Herald Wednesday that Europe is still willing to resettle [Miami Herald report] Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] detainees despite Congress' efforts to prevent closure and transfers. In a display of commitment...

Three Somali pirates charged in highjacking that killed 4 Americans

[JURIST] The US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia [official website] on Friday charged three Somali pirates with 26 counts for acts of piracy in the hijacking of a US vessel that resulted in the deaths of four US citizens. If convicte...

Casey Anthony defender says holes in state's forensics case help explain acquittal

Behind the acquittal of Casey Anthony was a defense team of Florida attorneys initially pegged as the underdogs. Dorothy Clay Sims -- who some described as the good cop to Jose Baez's bad cop -- spoke to The National Law Journal about the team's strate...

In first appellate ruling, 6th Circuit upholds health care reform law

A divided 6th Circuit panel on Wednesday handed the Obama administration its first appellate victory in the hard-fought battle over its signature health care law.

Federal judge refuses to vacate California same-sex marriage ruling

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of California [official website] on Tuesday rejected [opinion, PDF] a motion [text; JURIST report] by Proposition 8 [text; JURIST news archive] supporters to vacate Judge Vaughn Walke...

In opinion by Souter, 1st Circuit bars resentencing of sex offender based on need for treatment

In an opinion by retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter, the 1st Circuit has ordered a lower court to resentence a sex offender who had been sentenced to an additional 22 months so he would "have ample time" to take part in a therapy program a...

Apple sues Samsung for patent infringement in South Korea court

[JURIST] Apple filed suit Friday in the Seoul Central District Court claiming that the Samsung [corporate websites] "Galaxy" line of products copies its iPhone and iPad technology. This follows similar suits by Apple in the US and suits by Samsung [JURIST reports] filed in South Korea, Japan and Germany. It is rumored that these disputes will ultimately be settled through alternative dispute resolution [Reuters]. Apple has been embroiled in litigation marked by trading accusations of patent infringement with Nokia [corporate...

SEC Convinces Ninth Circuit To Reinstate Gateway Exec Convictions

The Securities and Exchange Commission has won back two securities fraud jury verdicts against Gateway executives that were thrown out by a federal judge in 2007, thanks to a 9th Circuit ruling that there was substantial evidence to support the verdicts.

Supreme Court strikes down Arizona campaign finance restriction

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Monday in Arizona Free Enterprise Club's Freedom Club PAC v. Bennett [Cornell LII backgrounder] that an Arizona campaign finance regulation that provided publicly financed candidates...

Elite U.K. Employment Boutique Launches Stand-Alone Support Services Business

U.K. employment law boutique Sacker & Partners has launched a stand-alone business offering project management, secretarial support and corporate governance advice to companies and pension plan trustees. Sackers Support Services was established Wednesd...

Ninth Circuit allows corruption trial of Arizona ex-congressman

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Thursday rejected [opinion, PDF] former US representative Richard Renzi's (R-AZ) appeal to have an extortion case against him dismissed. Renzi is under indictment for allegedly using his political office to profit from a real estate deal in 2005. He argued that negotiations regarding the deal, entered as evidence to a grand jury, were privileged "legislative acts" under the Speech or Debate Clause of Article I [text] of...

Howrey, Creditors Moving Quickly Toward Bankruptcy Plan

The parties in the Howrey bankruptcy case have taken a giant step toward a plan for the law firm's quick and orderly dissolution, preparing to sign a memo of understanding in the next two months that will give Howrey time to collect on several valuable...

Ex-Attorney Pleads Guilty to Federal Tax Evasion

Kenneth Heller pleaded guilty Monday to income tax evasion, agreeing to pay a civil penalty of $9.8 million for opening a sham offshore corporation and establishing a bank account with UBS AG and parking $26.4 million in the account.

John Jablonski Rumbles About Rambus

John Jablonski, partner at Goldberg Segalla in New York, speaks with Monica Bay, LTN magazine's editor-in-chief, about the Federal Circuit's recent Rambus decision and what it means for corporations and document preservation.

Williams & Connolly, Simpson Thacher Slam FDIC in Defense of WaMu Execs

In motions to dismiss FDIC claims that three former top executives at Washington Mutual ran the bank into the ground, defense lawyers have accused the FDIC of allowing WaMu to fail and then recklessly permitting JPMorgan to acquire its banking assets f...

Illinois appeals court orders lower court to rule on abortion notification law

[JURIST] The Illinois Appellate Court [official website] on Friday ordered [opinion, PDF] a circuit court to determine whether a law requiring a girl's guardians to be notified before she has an abortion should be enforced. The Parental Notice of Abort...

MGA should receive $108M in fees in Bratz case, special master finds

MGA Entertainment, which won an $88.5 million verdict against Mattel this year, should receive $108 million in attorney fees, according to a discovery master's recommendation contained in court documents.

Clausen Miller Sorts Out Mess After Learning One of Its Lawyers Isn't Licensed

It's one of a law firm's worst nightmares: One of its staff turns out not to be an attorney, and the firm faces the aftermath. That's the situation for Clausen Miller as it notifies officials that an associate who handled pleadings and court appearance...

Fred Furth and Stepson Settle Their Fee Dispute

Fred Furth, a San Francisco antitrust plaintiffs attorney known for blockbuster wins in his heyday, has reached a confidential agreement with his stepson in their long-running dispute over millions of dollars.

Caplin & Drysdale Helps Stephen Colbert Form His Super PAC

Caplin & Drysdale's Trevor Potter, an election law veteran who previously served as general counsel for John McCain's presidential campaigns in 2000 and 2008, represented comedian Stephen Colbert in his successful quest to form his own political action...

Opinion Says Lawyers May Check Jurors' Online Activity

Attorneys may monitor jurors through online social networks as long as they do not contact the jurors or in any way make their monitoring known to them, the New York County Lawyers' Association said in an ethics opinion last week.

California Wage Laws Cover Nonresidents, Justices Rule

Answering a certified question for the 9th Circuit in a case involving traveling software trainers employed by Oracle, the California Supreme Court has ruled that California companies must pay overtime to nonresidents who spend time working in the state.

Judge provisionally certifies classes in case against Cigna subsidiaries over death benefits

A federal judge has provisionally certified two classes in a case against Cigna subsidiaries that are alleged to have invested employee death benefits for their own profit without properly disclosing the practice or making a full accounting to benefici...

Mexico, Central American countries join challenge to Georgia immigration law

[JURIST] The governments of Mexico and several other countries, along with the Anti-Defamation League [advocacy website] filed amicus briefs on Thursday in support of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [advocacy website] class action lawsuit [JU...

Beachcroft in Merger Talks With DAC Over Latest Insurance Firm Tie-Up

Beachcroft is in merger talks with Davies Arnold Cooper in a deal that would create an insurance law firm with combined revenues of about 175 million pounds. The move follows news of merger talks between fellow insurance specialists Clydes and Barlows....

ABA takes first formal step toward improving law school transparency

The American Bar Association has approved a change to its annual law school questionnaire, requiring schools to report more detailed employment and salary information. The changes will be in place by February, when the schools next report the data to t...

Dole Settles Pesticide Claims With 5,000 Former Banana Plantation Workers

Dole Food Co. has agreed in principle to settle the claims of more than 5,000 former banana workers in Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Honduras that the company's use of dibromochloropropane during the 1970s and '80s caused the workers to become sterile.Visi...

D.C. Circuit Declines to Wade Into Yucca Mountain Dispute

The long and bitter fight over building a nuclear waste dump at Yucca Mountain, Nev., goes on after the D.C. Circuit ruled on Friday that it's too soon to challenge the Obama administration's decision to kill the project.

Federal appeals court orders immediate end to enforcement of 'Don't Ask Don't Tell'

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Wednesday lifted a stay [order, PDF] in Log Cabin Republicans v. USA [case materials], ordering an immediate end to enforcement of the military's "Don't Ask Don't Tell" (DADT) policy [10 USC 654 text; JURIST news archive], due to the Obama administration's assertion that it is unconstitutional [JURIST report]. This decision comes after the Ninth Circuit's denial [JURIST report] of a motion [text, PDF] by the US...

Altman Weil: Small Firm Acquisitions Drive Law Firm Merger Market

Small firm acquisitions drove an active second quarter of law firm mergers and acquisitions, according to a report released Wednesday by Altman Weil MergerLine. Ten of the 12 deals involved acquisitions of firms with 20 or fewer lawyers and the other t...

Appeals Court Revives Torture Claims Against Exxon

In a major ruling with wide implications for corporations that operate overseas, a divided federal appeals court said Friday that Exxon Mobil is not immune from liability for brutality that agents of the company allegedly orchestrated against Indonesia...

Former S.F. Lawyer Indicted in Ponzi Scheme

A former lawyer who resigned from the California Bar amid an investigation into funds stolen from his firm has been indicted in an alleged Ponzi scheme. Federal prosecutors allege that Robert Tunnell lost about $7 million of the $10 million investors g...

The Careerist: How to Be a Spectacular Lateral

A panel of experts provides answers to a reader's question about "rules" for success for lateral lawyers. Rule No. 1: Don't say no.Visit The Careerist

Ninth Circuit orders Obama administration say if it will defend 'Don't Ask Don't Tell'

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] Monday ordered [text, PDF] the Obama administration to say whether it plans to defend the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" (DADT) [10 USC 654 text; JURIST news archive] policy that bars gays and lesbians from serving openly in the military. The court said that it appeared from the merit briefs in Log Cabin Republicans v. USA [case materials] that the government was not prepared to defend the constitutionality...

AJC Prevails in Richard Jewell Case

A Georgia appeals court has affirmed the dismissal of libel claims against the Atlanta Journal Constitution brought by the estate of Richard Jewell, who found a bomb at the 1996 Olympics, only to be suspected of planting it himself. He was later cleared.

Ex-Judge Snyder Hit With Possible $2 Mil. Verdict in RICO Suit

Attorney Bernard Snyder has been hit with a verdict that could total more than $2 million in a civil RICO suit in which State Farm Mutual Auto Insurance accused him of masterminding a massive scheme to pad auto accident cases with bogus medical records.

Judge in Righthaven Case Levies $5,000 Fine for Misleading Court

A federal judge in the litigation against Righthaven has levied a $5,000 fine against the so-called "copyright troll" for misleading the court, but did not sanction any of the Righthaven attorneys who may have been responsible for the misrepresentation.

Clifford Chance London Funds Team Quits for Weil Gotshal

The majority of Clifford Chance's London funds practice -- including practice head Ed Gander, funds partners Nigel Clark and Nick Benson and tax partner Jonathan Kandel -- is moving to Weil Gotshal. The departures will leave Clifford Chance with just o...

Bankruptcy Court Declares DOMA Unconstitutional

In a rare and sweeping bankruptcy ruling, a federal bankruptcy judge backed by most of his colleagues in the Central District of California has held that the federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional.

Gay Librarian's Suspension Shocks Court's Sense of Fairness

A Manhattan judge has thrown out an arbitrator's "shocking" ruling suspending an openly gay high school librarian for conduct the judge said would have gone unpunished if committed by a heterosexual woman.

New York Assembly again passes same-sex marriage bill, stalls in Senate

[JURIST] The New York State Assembly [official website] passed a bill [A08354 text, materials] to legalize same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive] Wednesday, but the fate of the bill is uncertain as it moves to the State Senate [official website]. The ...

MoFo Makes Injunction Pitch in Apple's Infringement Battle with Samsung

Apple's lawyers at Morrison & Foerster have asked a federal judge to issue a preliminary injunction preventing Samsung from making or selling several of its Android phone and tablet computer products.

Aparna Dave on Wells Fargo's Social Media Successes

Aparna Dave, Wells Fargo's IP counsel, speaks with LTN editor-in-chief Monica Bay on companies' creation of social media policies and the steps that companies should take after developing those policies. Dave also describes how Wells Fargo uses Twitte...

DOJ appeals decision striking down ban on direct corporate campaign contributions

[JURIST] The US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] filed a notice of appeal [text, PDF] Thursday in the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit [official website] to challenge a decision to strike down a federal law that bans corporation...

In sharp tones, Court curbs the exclusionary rule

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday took direct aim at the exclusionary rule, with a 7-2 majority saying that evidence collected during a police search can be used against a defendant, even if the search is of a type that is later found unconstitutional.

Legal Industry Shrinking as Lawyer Numbers Grow

The legal sector shed 2,600 jobs in June, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's especially grim news given the results of the ABA's latest Lawyer Population Survey, which shows the number of lawyers across the country continues to ex...

Sullivan & Cromwell Leads the Pack in Busy M&A Market

M&A lawyers may not be as busy as they were during their pre-Lehman heyday, but a flurry of deal work during the first half of 2011 kept them busier than they've been since 2008, according to a new report.

Despite Supreme Court's Concepcion Decision, Judge Rules Goldman Sachs Can't Compel Arbitration with Plaintiff in Sex Discrimination Class Action

A federal judge has ruled that a former Goldman Sachs managing director can continue as a named plaintiff in a proposed gender discrimination class action, finding the Supreme Court's Concepcion v. AT&T Mobility decision didn't bar the plaintiff's claims.

Walk of shame?

In Dominique Strauss-Kahn's home country, where the press is banned from running photos of handcuffed defendants unless the person is convicted, the image of Strauss-Kahn's perp walk triggered outrage. Are the French right? Has this American tradition ...

Federal judge denies release of Taliban Guantanamo detainee

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia on Thursday ruled [opinion, PDF] against the release of a former high-ranking Taliban [CFR backgrounder] official at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] despite a request from Afg...

Switzerland high court upholds UBS disclosure of client information

[JURIST] The Federal Supreme Court of Switzerland [official website, in German] ruled [press release, PDF] Friday that the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) [official website, in German] was right to order UBS [corporate website] to ...

4th Circuit: Volvo may not unilaterally modify union retirees' health benefits

Volvo Group North America may not unilaterally modify a retiree group's health benefits after the collective bargaining agreement has expired unless it follows the agreement's dictates, a unanimous 4th Circuit panel has ruled.

Federal judge dismisses lawsuit over constitutional right to sell cigarettes

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Northern District of California [official website] on Friday dismissed [opinion, PDF] a lawsuit over the constitutional right to sell cigarettes. The lawsuit was brought by Safeway, Inc. [corporate website], a chain of grocery stores, challenging a San Francisco city ordinance banning the sale of cigarettes by pharmacies. The original ordinance had included an exception for "big-box stores" that contain pharmacies, but it was amended due to a lawsuit brought by...

Judge Blasts Ex-Inmate Over Filing of 'Frivolous' Motions

A New York state judge has denied a former inmate's fifth pro se motion to vacate his decades-old robbery conviction, ruling that the man cannot file future motions on his conviction without her permission.

Third Circuit rules schools cannot punish students for speech outside school

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit [official website] ruled in two cases on Monday that schools cannot punish students for speech or writing created outside the school environment. In JS v. Blue Mountain School District [opinion, PD...