Morning Docket

  • Morning Docket: 12.12.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.12.23

    * Copyright office declines to register AI art for lack of creativity. I guess they haven’t seen Dan Epps create Muppet originalists. [Law360]

    * Now that she announced that she would leave the state to get the abortion to save her life, the Texas Supreme Court felt comfortable ruling that she wasn’t entitled to an abortion in Texas. But make no mistake, these cowards were trying to delay this so they didn’t have to put life and death stakes on their own misogyny. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * “Kirkland & Ellis: is it party over for the world’s most profitable law firm?” Fascinating deep dive. [Financial Times]

    * Some Shearman partners slashed their own pensions up to 50 percent to make the merger happen in case you were wondering how thirsty they were for a merger. [American Lawyer]

    * Judge bans family separation policies for 8 years. That should hold until roughly January 2025. [ABA Journal]

    * Epic beats Google. [Reuters]

    * Big 4 firm getting out of law in Hong Kong. [ International]

  • Morning Docket: 12.11.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.11.23

    * Donald Trump has decided not to testify proving that it’s at least hypothetically possible for him to listen to the advice of counsel. [CNN]

    * Texas Supreme Court issues stay on emergency abortion procedure. [Reuters]

    * WilmerHale under fire for prepping congressional testimony of several university presidents described by the Times as “dodging questions about their policies.” Technically, they accurately answered those questions but there’s a reason why NY Times Pitchbot is such a popular account. [NY Times]

    * Boies Schiller names Matthew Schwartz as its new chair after David Boies announced his plan to step out of the role next year. [Law360]

    * About a quarter of law schools plan to use the JD-Next admissions exam. []

    * California admits youngest lawyer. [USA Today]

    * Murdaugh case spawns legal battle between lawyers over TikTok ethics charges. Bless this case for getting even stupider. [Daily Beast]

  • Morning Docket: 12.08.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.08.23

    * Transactional practices coming back just in time to pay for all those raises. [American Lawyer]

    * Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal literally used the phrase “slower economy” after a quarter with 5 percent growth. You really have to appreciate the commitment to the bit. [Wall Street Journal]

    * ASS Law gets non-compliance notice? What an absolute shock to absolutely no one. [ABA Journal]

    * Canadian firm wins libel suit over bad review. [ International]

    * Republican judges recast “incompetence” as “pattern of eliminating white males.” [Reuters]

    * Woman in Texas granted right to abort non-viable fetus threatening her, but the state sure tried to stop her. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Of all the conspiracies that Fox News imagined, it may turn out that Hunter Biden is really just bad at taxes. [Law360]

  • Morning Docket: 12.07.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.07.23

    * Lawyer asks that Donna Adelson, accused mastermind of the murder of law professor Dan Markel, be moved out of jail… preferably somewhere with easy access to an international airport. [Tallahassee Democrat]

    * Cocaine’s a hell of a drug. [ABA Journal]

    * Wolf assures public that sheep are safe if the Supreme Court eliminates wolf repellent. [Law360]

    * Hunter Biden says he’s only going to testify in a public hearing, irritating House leadership who really want something they can twist later. [NPR]

    * After firing cancer patient over marijuana test, company had the opportunity to show basic humanity. Guess what it did instead. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Spencer Fane moves into Salt Lake City market after merging with Snow Christensen & Martineau. [Reuters]

    * Proskauer chief steps down. [American Lawyer]

  • Morning Docket: 12.06.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.06.23

    * Texas woman heads to court to get an abortion after learning the fetus is not viable and seriously threatens her health. You know, the sort of medical tragedy that definitely needs more lawyers, judges, and briefing. [Reuters]

    * While Joshua Wright files more ill-advised lawsuits, the judge tossed his first $108M suit until he can allege some actually defamatory statements. [MLex]

    * Sam Alito wants to help his buddy defund the United States. It’s not working out for him. [Slate]

    * Wisconsin’s radical anti-union law could soon meet its match. [The Nation]

    * NY case considers whether 401k plans should be barred from making investment decisions that make politicians unhappy. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Professor Jim Park discusses the history of securities fraud in the United States and it’s as bad as you’d think. [Oh My Fraud]

    * A pair of mid-sized firms pair up to create a firm that should make the next Am Law 200. [Law360]

  • Morning Docket: 12.05.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.05.23

    * Law firm leaders less optimistic going into 2024, in case you were still wondering if the average law firm leader has any clue how business works. They entered 2023 in the midst of flagging growth and 8 percent inflation combining to bring deal activity to a near halt and they felt BETTER than they do going into 2024 with red-hot 5.2 percent growth and inflation that’s going to settle just under 3 percent (and bring down interest rates with it)? [American Lawyer]

    * Court struggles to determine if Second Amendment covers switchblades. Time to scour the work of 18th century greasers to see what they thought. [Courthouse News Service]

    * Supreme Court looks into legality of shield protecting Sackler family from opioid settlement. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Meanwhile, The Onion has coverage of how Clarence Thomas is approaching this case. [The Onion]

    * DeSantis cronies on new board governing Disney property accuse the company of controlling the old board. Which it acknowledges wasn’t illegal. These people really can’t get any dumber. [Reuters]

    * Golden Gate is done, but the challenges for students are just getting started after ABA nixes school’s teachout plan. [ABA Journal]

    * Former Biglaw attorney begins second murder trial. [Law360]

  • Morning Docket: 12.04.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.04.23

    * Could it be that originalism revolves around blatant historical falsehoods? Yes, don’t be silly, of course it is. [Politico]

    * Supreme Court eyes blowing up tax law while it’s at it. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Judge characterizes Google’s tactics as deeply troubling. If these shenanigans offend him, don’t let him see what’s going on in any of the Trump cases. [Law360]

    * Trump’s legal team suggests delaying trial until Trump leaves office after the hypothetical next term because… reasons. [Washington Post]

    * Federal judiciary asks for less money this year but still warns of shortfall. Congress shouldn’t even pay the heating bills until the Supreme Court adopts ethics rules with teeth. [Reuters]

    * The Fifth Circuit does a lot of stupid stuff, but its new AI regulation is a low-key contender for its dumbest []

    * Amazon’s approach to unionizing workers was unsurprisingly illegal [CNBC]

  • Morning Docket: 12.01.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 12.01.23

    * Miss Manners asked the appropriate way to respond when people make fun of lawyers. Somehow the answer wasn’t, “just suck it up you weenie.” [Washington Post]

    * Study confirms that there aren’t enough legal aid lawyers. [ABA Journal]

    * Giving the judges a Nazi salute seems like it should be worth a lot more than a 250 quid fine. [RollonFriday]

    * Google takes aim at Microsoft with UK antitrust regulators. [Reuters]

    * Another Biglaw firm yanks an offer over public statements supporting Palestinians. This one’s headed to the EEOC. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Biglaw associate approved for admission to Maryland bar despite cheating issues. []

    * In resounding triumph for free speech, Montanans can watch stupid videos again. [Law360]

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  • Morning Docket: 11.30.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.30.23

    * Supreme Court poised to kill off SEC in-house enforcement. Weird how they think administrative courts pose an affront to justice when they fine millionaire speculators but don’t have a problem with it incarcerating pro se 3-year-olds. [NPR]

    * But at least the Court began from the premise that the Fifth Circuit is probably crazy. [Dorf on Law]

    * CFPB warns that AI vests too much power to a handful of tech CEOs. Yeah… but that won’t last long. I’ve seen Ex Machina. [Law360]

    * Until the robot uprising though, several state insurance authorities are probing carriers using AI to make “discriminatory garbage in, discriminatory garbage out” coverage decisions. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Preet Bharara wants the Justice Department to stop ghosting targets. Amazing how the perspective changes when you’re representing folks on the other side of the table. [Reuters]

    * IPOs coming back. Time for firms that laid off all their corporate folks to wildly flail about. [Corporate Counsel]

    * Crowell enters the Eric Adams imbroglio. [Gothamist]

  • Morning Docket: 11.29.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.29.23

    * Supreme Court considers whether verdicts are verdicts. The answer is always, but with this Court we need to sweat it out a bit. [Balls and Strikes]

    * Trump judge tells lawyer that no case in “history” supports the position that the government consider asylum requests from seekers denied access to U.S. soil. Probably because there until the Trump administration everyone realized that was illegal so it never came up. [Law360]

    * Amazon orders pro-union materials torn down because why follow federal law? [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Biglaw’s coming for the emerging markets, but it’s not just to capture new business. [American Lawyer]

    * Lawyers used to worry about hallucinations, but a new concern is emerging when it comes to generative AI. [Legaltech News]

    * Alex Murdaugh gets another 27 years but who’s even counting at this point? [Reuters]

    * Charlie Munger, founder of Munger Tolles & Olson dies at age 99. [Daily Journal]

  • Morning Docket: 11.28.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.28.23

    * Supreme Court hears challenge to nearly a century of SEC enforcement authority. As the Constitution doesn’t even mention “securities and exchange,” we should go back to the economic glory days of the early 1930s. [Reuters]

    * Honestly can’t think of a more idiotic legal claim than suing the platforms where FTX ran ads. []

    * State AGs suing Facebook say Zuckerberg rejected a ban on image filters “shown to be harmful to mental health.” Never mind that most research advocates against banning such filters. Ugh, do we have to defend Mark Zuckerberg here? [Law360]

    * Litigation finance? In my day we laundered our money through fine art purchases and we liked it! [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Why is Trump’s judiciary continuing its assault on Voting Rights Act after John Roberts already set an outer bound on the law? Because when you set a legal standard that amounts to one guy’s whim, you don’t have rule of law, you have a bunch of dingbats auditioning to replace that guy. [Vox]

    * John Eastman asks for a speedier trial in Georgia in a clumsy bid to give Trump a sneak peek at the evidence. [Newsweek]

  • Morning Docket: 11.27.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.27.23

    * Judge prepares to embark on beer taste test in ongoing intellectual property dispute. It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it. [Law Society Gazette]

    * Lest you think that being a cop would get him the sort of basic protection every other prisoner is routinely denied in prison… Derek Chauvin got stabbed and the Bureau of Prisons isn’t even bothering to update his family. [NBC]

    * Kirkland makes big bucks off big mistakes. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Former recruiter’s bankruptcy estate sues Major, Lindsey & Africa alleging sexual assault cover up. [American Lawyer]

    * White, heterosexual male NYU Law 1L who preemptively assumes he’s too dumb to make law review can continue to pursue his case anonymously for now. [Reuters]

    * Lizzo tries to argue that everything she does is in the public interest. [Law360]

  • Morning Docket: 11.22.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.22.23

    * Remember the runaway inflation in the price of eggs? Well, which came first: the chicken or the collusive price-fixing scheme? [Law360]

    * Man who got rich selling fake money in trouble. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Court finds Elon Musk knew about Tesla autopilot defect. Probably a good time to launch a distraction lawsuit against Media Matters or something. [Reuters]

    * Women accuse Amazon of discrimination, which is ironic for the Classics majors out there. []

    * Judge scolds Biglaw lawyers for immaturity. [ABA Journal]

    * “I just wanted to relax and stop being accused of misrepresenting assets,” says Trump Org exec bringing epic levels of I’m-sorry-that-you’re-angry energy to the proceedings. [Courthouse News Service]

    * Donna Adelson to be held without bond. [ABC]


  • Morning Docket: 11.21.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.21.23

    * In “Elon Musk defamation suit” news, man brings claim against Musk that might have actual merit unlike Musk’s claim against Media Matters. [CNN]

    * Trump organization officials say Mazars was fully aware of all the valuation tactics Trump used. Which is like Michael Corleone testifying that it was all cool because Tom knew what was up. [Law360]

    * The turmoil at OpenAI can be traced back to its governance structure, which looks like something ChatGPT came up with. [Corporate Counsel]

    * Judge Ho used the concurrence in another case to pen a shadow brief in the Rahimi case now that even this Supreme Court signaled that they think Ho’s crazy. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Supreme Court denies Derek Chauvin’s bid to find someone willing to give him qualified immunity for murder. [Reuters]

    * Alex Murdaugh pleads guilty. Not to that thing, the other thing. No, not that other thing, the other other thing. [ABA Journal]

  • Morning Docket: 11.20.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.20.23

    * Billing rates are up and somehow the narrative around this never mentions that we had a spate of overall inflation in the middle. [American Lawyer]

    * Lawyer pleads guilty to paying clerk for referrals. The hustle is real. [ABA Journal]

    * DOJ asks court to strip Eric Adams of control over Rikers Island. Was he trying to sell that to Turkey too? [Gothamist]

    * Bob Menendez hires Paul Hastings. [Reuters]

    * Federal Circuit asking judge to let them continue to pocket impeach Pauline Newman just like it doesn’t say they can in the Constitution. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Abuse lawsuit against Diddy settles instantly. Seems like something that could’ve been handled with a demand letter. [Law360]

    * David Boies plans to step back from firm leadership in 2025. [Litigation Daily]

  • Morning Docket: 11.16.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.16.23

    * Lawyers didn’t realize plaintiff was dead. The peril of contingency work, because with monthly billing they would’ve been all over that. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * The antitrust case for cheating at football. [Wall Street Journal]

    * Judiciary Committee Dems prepared to take the most cowardly way out again. [Courthouse News Service]

    * AI passes ethics exam, proving that the ethics test fails to catch the sort of advocate who would just blatantly make up fake caselaw. [Reuters]

    * Lawsuit against Amazon focuses on social casinos.[]

    * Attorney for Georgia co-defendant leaked the proffer videos saying the world had a “right to know” what was in there. [Law360]

    * John Kennedy continues to ask inane Black’s Law Dictionary questions of federal judiciary nominees waiting for them to be confused about what he’s trying to get at when he’s asking about a random legal concept. It’s basically a latter day version of a segregationist literacy test: struggle to figure out the nuance, get blasted as “unable to answer basic questions”; answer with a simplistic definition, get called out for “having only the most basic understanding.” [Fox News]

  • Morning Docket: 11.15.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.15.23

    * Fifth Circuit says state bar dues violate the First Amendment. Alexander Hamilton must have mentioned something about it in a pamphlet somewhere once. [Courthouse News Service]

    * The Blind Side saga continues as player asks court to stop giving his money to the folks that allowed everyone to believe they’d adopted him. Sandra Bullock is getting another Oscar for this sequel. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Oregon’s recent reform to attorney licensing continues to inspire hope for other jurisdictions. [Oregon Live]

    * Muslim bar associations write Biglaw firms arguing that public statements and actions over the past few weeks have fueled Islamophobia. [CNN]

    * Meanwhile, NYU sued over disparate and discriminatory application of its procedures when it comes to antisemitic attacks. The complaint alleges that the school isn’t doing anything about chants like “gas the Jews” and “Hitler was right,” which stray pretty far from the sort of difficult line drawing between criticizing the war and bigotry other institutions grapple with.  [Reuters]

    * Court hands full control of the Pac-12 to the only 2 schools left in the Pac-12. [ESPN]

    * Trump tries to explain how his property valuations get so wacky. [Law360]

  • Morning Docket: 11.14.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.14.23

    * Suing the bar exam doesn’t work no matter how broken it is. [ABA Journal]

    * Look what the guilty plea fairy just coughed up in the Trump case! [Guardian]

    * For our next trick, watch the Eighth Amendment disappear before your very eyes! [Reuters]

    * WeWork’s auditor moves out. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Not content to just complain about rates, in-house counsel complain about the whole concept of hourly billing. [Corporate Counsel]

    * Google CLO searches for answers. [Law360]

    * Orangetheory’s lawyers use AI to complete job in half the time. Gyms… always looking for the easy way out. [Fortune]

  • Morning Docket: 11.13.23
    Morning Docket

    Morning Docket: 11.13.23

    * Law schools turn to Taylor Swift to teach material. “So you see class, that’s why when there’s no body, there’s no crime.” [AP]

    * Judge denies motion to probe jurors over alleged group chat in Charlie Adelson murder trial. [ABA Journal]

    * DeNiro’s former assistant wins $1.2 million in gender discrimination suit. [Courthouse News Service]

    * Trump wants criminal trials televised in latest test of his theory that he can commit a crime in public and still have supporters. [Reuters]

    * Cleary plans to add half a billion in revenue. [Bloomberg Law News]

    * Chambers is getting sold for $490 million… which seems like a lot for Chambers, right? [Law360]

    * It’s time, once again, for GCs to whine about law firms raising their rates slightly below the rate of inflation. [American Lawyer]