Adjunct Law Prof Blog

Editor: Mitchell H. Rubinstein
New York Law School

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Alaska Supreme Court Issues Major Decision Recognizing Labor Union Privilege

Alaska Supreme Court

The Alaska Supreme Court recognized a union-relations privilege in Peterson v. State of Alaska, No. S-14233, ___P.3d___, 2012 WL 2947636  (Alaska, July 20, 2012), Download Peterson .The Court held that "[b]ased on the strong interest in confidential union-related communications and statutory protection against unfair labor practices, we hold [the state labor relations act] impliedly provides the State's union employees a union-relations privilege."  The reasoning employed by the Court - that "the proper functioning of [a] mandatory grievance and arbitration system . . . requires some protection for confidential communications made for the purpose of facilitating the rendition of grievance-related representative services to the employee" and that recognizing a privilege "harmonizes [the state labor relations act]'s strong public policy in favor of contractual resolution of labor disputes with the civil discovery rules" - should be useful in other states and in other settings where this issue frequently arises.

A copy of the decision can be found Download Peterson Alaska SC Recognizes Labor Union Privil. This is a major decision. It is my hope that other states will follow suit. I wrote a law review article on this topic a few years ago, Is a Full Labor Relations Evidentiary Privilege Developing?, 29 Berkeley Journal of Labor and Employment Law 221 (2008), available here

Though this decision arose in the public sector, there is no reason why this decision would not be applicable to private employers. The policies behind the Alaska statute and the NLRA are virtually identical and the policies and need for the recognition of this privilege are certainly identical. 

Mitchell H. Rubinstein


July 22, 2012 in Labor Law, Law Review Articles, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (1)

Saturday, July 14, 2012

California Senate passes legislation barring employers and colleges from requiring access to social media passwords

 In May, the California Senate passed the Social Media Privacy Act, S. 1349, in a 28-5 vote.This Bill would bar private and public postsecondary educational institutions and employers from requiring, or formally asking students, employees, and applicants, to disclose their user name and account password for social media accounts.

It would be interesting to see if this Bill is enacted into law. Employers who require employees to disclose their passwords raises interesting legal issues. Law review commentary would be most welcome.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

July 14, 2012 in Current Events, Employment Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, June 25, 2012

1983 Claim Dismissed Based Upon Student Being Bullied

Estate of Asher Brown v. Cypress Fairbanks Indep. Sch. Dist., ____F.Supp. 2d____(S.D. Tex. May 23, 2012), is an interesting case.  A federal court in Texas granted a school district’s motion dismissing a parent’s Section 1983 due process claim which alleged that through its failure to enforce anti-bullying policies at the student’s middle school, the school district failed to protect the student from harm, who ultimately committed suicide.

Law review commentary on this important issue would be most welcome.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein


June 25, 2012 in Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Reverse Education Law Discrimination

Reportedly, a male student is suing under Title IX asserting that he has the right to remain on an all girls hockey team. The case is being challenged administratively and the parents are threatening legal action. A copy of a newspaper article in the Boston Herald written by the AP provides additional information, here.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

June 12, 2012 in Discrimination Law, Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

NY Appellate Court Holds That Accusing Someone of Being Gay Is No Longer Defamation Per Se

Yonaty v. Mincolla, ____A.D.3d___(3d Dep't. May 31, 2012), is an exceedingly important case that has not gotten much press. The case was a defamation action and the legal issue was whether or not falsing accusing someone as being gay is defamation per se. This is important because if it is slander per se, then plaintiff has to allege special damages. 

Here the court refused to follow 30 year old precedent from another Department which held that making such a false accusation was indeed slander per se. As the court explained:

In regard to New York in particular, we locate "the public policy of [this] state in the law as expressed in statute and judicial decision and also [by] consider[ing] the prevailing attitudes of the community" (Debra H. v Janice R., 14 NY3d 576, 600 [2010], cert denied ___ US ___, 131 S Ct 908 [2011] [internal quotation marks and citations omitted]; see Dickerson v Thompson, 73 AD3d 52, 54 [2010]). Rather than countenancing the view that homosexuality is disgraceful, the Human Rights Law, since 2002, has expressly prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation in employment, public accommodations, credit, education and housing (Executive Law § 296). Most revealing of the respect that the people of this state currently extend to lesbians, gays and bisexuals, the Legislature passed the Marriage Equality Act (Domestic Relations Law § 10-a, as amended by L 2011, ch 95, § 3) in June 2011, which was strongly supported by the Governor and gave same-sex couples the right to marry in New York, thereby granting them all the benefits of marriage, including "the symbolic benefit, or moral satisfaction, of seeing their relationships recognized by the State" (Hernandez v Robles, 7 NY3d 338, 358 [2006]). Even prior to the Marriage Equality Act, this Court had previously explained that "the public policy of our state protects same-sex couples in a myriad of ways" — including numerous statutory benefits and judicial decisions expressing a policy of acceptance (Dickerson v Thompson, 78 AD3d at 54). Similarly "evidenc[ing] a clear commitment to respect, uphold and protect parties to same-sex relationships[,] executive and local orders extend[] recognition to same-sex couples and grant[] benefits accordingly" (id.see Godfrey v Spano, 13 NY3d 358, 380-381 [2009] [Ciparick, J., concurring] [detailing the many statutes and court decisions reflecting a public policy of acceptance of lesbians, gays and bisexuals]).

We note that the most recent Appellate Division decision considering the issue in depth was decided nearly 30 years ago (Matherson v Marchello, 100 AD2d 233, 241-242 [2d Dept 1984], supra). In that case, the Second Department concluded that it was "constrained . . . at this point in time" to hold that a statement imputing homosexuality was defamatory per se in light of the then-existing "social opprobrium of homosexuality" and "[l]egal sanctions imposed upon homosexuals in areas ranging from immigration to military service" (id. at 241 [emphasis added]). Ultimately, the Court held that "the potential and probable harm of a false charge of homosexuality, in terms of social and economic impact, cannot be ignored" (id. at 242). In light of the tremendous evolution in social attitudes regarding homosexuality, the elimination of the legal sanctions that troubled the Second Department in 1984 and the considerable legal protection and respect that the law of this state now accords lesbians, gays and bisexuals, it cannot be said that current public opinion supports a rule that would equate statements imputing homosexuality with accusations of serious criminal conduct or insinuations that an individual has a loathsome disease (see Stern v Cosby, 645 F Supp 2d 258, 273-275 [SD NY 2009];Albright v Morton, 321 F Supp 2d 130, 136-139 [D Mass 2004], affd on other grounds 410 F3d 69 [2005]; [*5]Donovan v Fiumara, 114 NC App 524, 528-531, 442 SE2d 572, 575-577 [1994]; Hayes v Smith, 832 P2d 1022, 1023-1025 [Colo 1991]; Boehm v Bankers Ins. Group, Inc., 557 So 2d 91, 94 and n 1 [Fla 1990], review denied 564 So 2d 1085 [Fla 1990]; but see Gallo v Alitalia-Linee Aeree Italiane-Societa per Azioni, 585 F Supp 2d 520, 549-550 [2008] [relying, in part, on our decision in Tourge v City of Albany (285 AD2d 785 [2001], supra) in concluding that statements imputing homosexuality remain slanderous per se under New York law]). While lesbians, gays and bisexuals have historically faced discrimination and such prejudice has not been completely eradicated, "the fact of such prejudice on the part of some does not warrant a judicial holding that gays and lesbians [and bisexuals], merely because of their sexual orientation, belong in the same class as criminals" (Stern v Cosby, 645 F Supp 2d, at 275).

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

June 3, 2012 in Discrimination Law, Law Review Ideas, Litigation, New York Law | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, May 25, 2012

Maryland Joins Illinois in Recognizing a Labor Relations Privilege

Readers to this blog know that I am interested in the legal question of whether or not a labor relationsprivilege is developing. I have written two law review articles on this topic, the most recent of which is  “Is a Full Labor Relations Evidentiary Privilege Developing?

Maryland now joins Illinois as the only two states that have enacted, by legislation, a labor relations privilege. Senate Bill No. 97, effective Oct. 1, 2012, was recently signed into law by the Governor, here. The statute provides, with certain exceptions:

A labor organization or an agent of a labor organization may not be compelled to disclose any communication or information the labor organization or agent received or acquired in confidence from an employee while the labor organization or agent was acting in a representative capacity concerning an employee grievance

This is a major development and it is my hope that other states follow Maryland and Illinois' lead. Even without explicit legislation, as I argued in my law review article, there is need for courts to recognize a labor relations privilege. Public policy should encourage and support open and frank communications between bargaining unit employees and their unions. This would be healthy for both management and labor. With honest and frank communication, perhaps less industrial strife will occur. Open and honest communications may result in fewer grievances being filed and the filing of grievances with merit. 


Hat Tip: Jean Marc Favreau, Esq.

               Peer, Gan Geisler, Washington D.C. 




May 25, 2012 in Labor Law, Law Review Articles, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

4th Circuit Holds ADHD Is Not A Disability


Halpern v. Wake Forest University Health Sciences, ____F.3d____(4th Cir. Feb. 28, 2012), is an extremely important case. The court upholds the discharge of a medical student from medical school and rejected his ADHD defense under the Rehab and ADA. Why, providing deference to the medical school, the court held that he was not qualified under the statute because "professionalism" was an essential part of the program. 

The court cited to several employment cases which held that an employee misconduct is not protected even if the disability caused the misconduct.

Law review commentary on this important case would be most welcome. Here that students!

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

Hat Tip: Workplace Prof Blog

May 15, 2012 in Discrimination Law, Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (2)

Monday, May 14, 2012

Breaking News D.C. District Court Strikes Down NLRB Election Rules


The decision is Chamber of Commerce v.  NLRB, ____F. Supp. 2d____ (D.D.C. May 14, 2012) and can be downloaded here,  Download DDC decision

According to the judge, "Member Hayes ... did not vote on the adoption of the final rule when it was circulated through the JCMS system on December 16, 2011."  The judge explained:

"T]he December 16th decision to adopt the final rule, not the earlier votes, was the relevant agency action. A quorum, accordingly, must have participated in that decision. And although Hayes need not have voted in order to be counted toward the quorum, he may not be counted merely because he was a member of the Board at the time the rule was adopted. More was required. Because the final rule was promulgated without the requisite quorum, the Court must set it aside on that ground and does not reach Plaintiffs' remaining arguments."

Looks like this is another issue headed to the Supremes.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

May 14, 2012 in Law Review Ideas, NLRB | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Breaking News NLRB Acting G.C. Issues Guidance On Union Elections

The Acting General Counsel just issued a 24 page Guidance Memo on Representation Case Changes, GC-12-04 (April 26, 2012),  Download Guidance memo GC 12-04 4.27.12

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

April 26, 2012 in Law Review Ideas, NLRB | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

NLRB Rejects Claim That President Obama's Recess Appointments Were Improper

Center for Social Change. 358 NLRB No. 24 (March 29, 2012), is a case we are going to hear more about. There, in a test of certification case, the Board rejected a claim that it did not have authority to act before the President's recess appointments were improper. The Democratic majority reasoned that there is a presumption of regularity in the absence of clear and convincing evidence to the contrary. The claim was that the recess appointments were improper because the Senate was still in session. The Republican minority would simply hold that it does not have jurisdiction to entertain this. The Replican controlled Senate, according to Politico, is set to challenge these appointments as well, here.

Law review commentary on this important issue would be most welcome.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

Hat Tip: Workplace Prof Blog 

April 19, 2012 in Law Review Ideas, NLRB | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

New York Appellate Court Issues Major Employment At Will Decision and Essentially Implies Public Policy Exception

Villarin v. Rabbi Haskel Lookstein School, 2012 NY Slip Op. 02786 (1st Dept. April 12, 2012), is a significant case. 

New York is one of the most conservative employment at will states. The Legislature enacted Labor Law Section 740 to protect whisleblowers, but it has been interpreted very narrowly by courts to require an ACTUAL violation of law Bordell v. GE, 88 NY 2d 869 (1996) AND illegal activity that creates a substanal and specific danger to public health. The reporting of fraud and religious harassment of an individual has been held not to be within the protection of this statute. Leibowitz v. Bank Leumi, 152 A.D. 2d 169 (2d Dep't. 1989). 

Villarin is significant because the majority holds that a school nurse at a private school is protected from being terminated because she reported child abuse. What is sigificant about this case is that the alleged abuse only concered one student. A two judge dissent felt that because the public policy did not involve a wider issue applicable to public health in general,(because only one student was involved), that this statute was not applicable.

Since two judges dissented, under New York law, this case can be appealed to the New York Court of Appeals as a matter of right. If the decision stands, like it unquestionably should, New York would essentially be recognizing a public policy exception to the employment at will doctrine at least where an actual violation of law occurred because every case would involve at least a single individual. 

Stay tunned. 


April 15, 2012 in Employment-At-Will & Exceptions, Law Review Ideas, New York Law | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Supremes Grant Cert. In Affirmative Action Case

On Feb. 21, 2012, the Supremes granted cert to Fisher v. University of Austin, 631 F.3d 213 (5th Cir.). The docket sheet is here.  The University uses race as one factor in the admissions process. CNN coverage is hereAbove The Law believes that the Court granted cert becaus this is an election year. The question presented is as follows:

Whether this Court's decisions interpreting the Equal Protection Clause ofthe Fourteenth Amendment, including Grutter v. Bollinger, 539 U.S. 306 (2003),permit the University of Texas at Austin's use of race in undergraduate admissions decisions.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein








February 21, 2012 in Discrimination Law, Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Taking Photos Can Be Concerted Activity


NLRB v. White Oak Manor, No. 10-2122 (4th Cir., Oct. 28, 2011), is an interesting case which warrents law review commentary. You also cannot make these facts up. An employee wore a hat to work because she was embarrassed by a bad haircut, but a manager instructed her to remove the hat. The next day she returned to work and began taking photographs of other employees who wore hats and other clothing that violated the dress code. Some of the photos were taken with the photographed employees’ consent, while others were not. Upon hearing complaints from employees about having their photos taken and shared with other employees without consent, the company terminated the employee.  The NLRB and court held that the photographing effort was protected concerted activity because it centered on enforcement of the dress code, a working condition.  The court  wrote that the employee’s “grievance may have started as an individual gripe,” but it “evolved into a campaign to have the dress code enforced in a fair and equitable manner.”  

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

February 16, 2012 in Labor Law, Law Review Ideas, NLRB | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Obama's NLRB Recess Appointments To Be Challenged


Two pro-business groups, including the National Right To Work Foundation, are challenging President Obama's recess appointments to the NLRB. As can be expected, Obama's Justice Department issued a formal opinion which concluded that such appointments were appropriate. A copy of the Justice Department Memo is available here.  

I do not profess to be an expert here, but it seems to me that there is a tension between the advice and consent portion of the constitution with the power to issue recess appointments-particularly where there are back to back recess appointments as in the case of the NLRB. Readers will recall that Craig Becker, whose recess appointment just expired, was appointed last year under a recess appointment. 

Law review commentary on this important issue would be most welcome.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

Hat Tip: Workplace Prof Blog

January 16, 2012 in Law Review Ideas, NLRB | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

6th Circuit Issues Major Decision Addressing Volunteer Coverage Under Title VII

Bryson v. Middlefield Volunteer Fire Department, ____F.3d____(6th Cir. Sep't. 2, 2011), is a major employment law case. Normally, Title VII as well as other employment laws only covers employees. Thus, volunteers would not be protected under most employment laws because they are not employees. But who is a volunteer? Does it may if they receive some type of remunication? I wrote a law review article on this in 2006. Our Nation's Forgotten Workers: The Unprotected Volunteers  
Journal of Labor and Employment Law, Vol. 9, p. 147. Notice how I use the term "most." There are several circumstances where an employment relationship could be found where there is no traditional employment relationship. I will have more to say on this topic when my forthcoming law review article in the Univ of Penn Journal of Business Law is published early next year. For now, I wish to stick to the issue of the status of volunteers. 

In Bryson, the 6th Circuit rejected the Second Circuit's two step test which first examines whether the putative employee receives significant remuneration and then analyzes the common law right to control test. The 6th Circuit held that the issue of remuneration should not be part of a separate step, but rather it is an issue which can be included within the common law factors. Thus, the court drew a very fine line. It explained its reasoning as follows:

We believe that the district court erred, however, in its conclusion that remuneration must be an independent antecedent inquiry. The district court adopted the Second Circuit's two-step test for determining whether an individual is an employee under Title VII, which requires a plaintiff to establish first that she is a "hired party" by showing that she received "substantial benefits not merely incidental to the activity performed," before the district court may consider the common-law agency test from Darden and Reid. City of New York, 359 F.3d at 91-92 (internal quotation marks omitted); see R.25 (Dec. 14, 2009 Dist. Ct. Op. at 3 & n.4) (citing O'Connor v. Davis,126 F.3d 112, 115-16 (2d Cir. 1997), cert. denied, 522 U.S. 1114 (1998)). In this case, each individual firefighter-member is a "hired party" in that each has a contractual relationship with the Department—the firefighter-member provides firefighting services to the Department in exchange for benefits from the Department, including worker's compensation coverage, insurance coverage, gift cards, personal use of the Department's facilities and assets, training, and access to an emergency fund. See Demski v. U.S. Dep't of Labor, 419 F.3d 488, 492 (6th Cir. 2005) (concluding that petitioner—the sole shareholder of a company that had contracts with the purported "employer" company—was not an "employee" of the latter company under the Energy Reorganization Act, 42 U.S.C. § 5851, because "[i]t is undisputed that no contractual relationship of any sort existed between [the purported "employer" company] and [the petitioner]"). But we decline to adopt the Second Circuit's view that, to be a "hired party," a plaintiff must demonstrate that she received significant remuneration. See City of New York,359 F.3d at 91-92York v. Ass'n of the Bar of N.Y., 286 F.3d 122, 125-26 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 537 U.S. 1089 (2002)O'Connor, 126 F.3d at 115-16.

We do not believe that the term "hired party" from Darden and Reid supports an independent antecedent remuneration requirement. The Supreme Court included the term "hired party" inDarden only in a direct quote from its decision in Reid, and the Reid Court's use of "hired party" was in the context of the "work for hire" provision from the Copyright Act. Although the Court did not define "hired party" in Reid, it did define "hiring party": "By `hiring party,' we mean to refer to the party who claims ownership of the copyright by virtue of the work for hire doctrine."490 U.S. at 739. We doubt that the Court would define "hiring party" as such while at the same time considering "hired party" to carry much more substantive weight in requiring that it be an individual who received significant remuneration for his services. Moreover, the Court's instruction to apply the common law of agency is not limited to when the individual receives significant remuneration but rather "when Congress has used the term `employee' without defining it." Reid, 490 U.S. at 739-40 (emphasis added); accord id. at 741 ("[T]he term `employee' should be understood in light of the general common law of agency."); see also Darden, 503 U.S. at 323 ("[W]e adopt a commonlaw test for determining who qualifies as an `employee' under ERISA.").

Our decision to consider remuneration as a factor when determining whether a employment relationship exists comports with Darden's instruction that, when evaluating a particular relationship, "`all of the incidents of the relationship must be assessed and weighed with no one factor being decisive.'" Darden, 503 U.S. at 324 (quoting UnitedIns. Co., 390 U.S. at 258);accord Clackamas Gastroenterology Assocs., P.C. v. Wells, 538 U.S. 440, 450-51 (2003);Johnson, 151 F.3d at 568Ware, 67 F.3d at 578. "`[T]he extent of control . . . is not dispositive,'" and several of the factors listed in Darden and Reid relate to financial matters.Ware, 67 F.3d at 577-78 (quoting Reid, 490 U.S. at 752). To be sure, "[t]he degree of importance of each factor [will vary] depending on the occupation and the factual context in which the services are performed." Rev. Rul. 87-41; accord Ware, 67 F.3d at 578. But no one factor, including remuneration, is decisive, and therefore no one factor is an independent antecedent requirement.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein


December 25, 2011 in Employment Discrimination, Employment Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Federal district court rules Pennsylvania school district not liable for peer bullying

Kirby v. Loyalsock Twp. Sch. Dist., ____F.Supp.2d____ (M.D. Pa. Sept. 6, 2011), is an interesting case. A Pennsylvania lower federal court granted summary judgment in favor of a school district and individual school officials in a suit brought by a former student who claimed the defendants violated her constitutional rights to free association, equal protection, and procedural and substantive due process because school officials failed to discipline the students who were bullying her. Because it found that the student had failed to establish as a matter of law that her constitutional rights were violated, the court declined to address the school officials’ claim that they were entitled to qualified immunity from the suit. The cour also concluded that the school district could not be held liable under the theory of municipal liability, based on the manner in which the officials enforced the school district’s anti-bullying policy, because the court had ruled that the officials had not violated the student’s constitutional rights.

Bullying remains one of the "hot" legal issues today and law review commentary is always welcome.


Mitchell H. Rubinstein


December 10, 2011 in Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, December 5, 2011

More Offices Allowing Employees To Purchase Their Own Tech Equipment

More Offices Let Workers Choose Their Own Devices is an interesting September 22, 2011 New York Times article. As the title states, more companies are allowing workers to purchase their own technology at company expense. 

Is this a good idea? On some level, yes-and that is certainly the tenor of the article. But there are two may problems with having the employee purchase the equipment and being reimbursed later. First, there is the issue of security. I do not know much about technology so I cannot further comment.

But, there is also an employment law issue. If the company provides the equipment, case law provides that the employees do not have a reasonable expecation of privacy. Therefore, employers can, and often do, mointor email and the like. So, does an employee have a greater expecation of privacy if he purchases the equipment and is simply reimbursed? Maybe.

Law review commentary on this important issue would be most welcome.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

December 5, 2011 in Employment Law, Law Review Ideas, Technology | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, November 14, 2011

2d Cir Upholds Ban Of School District's Use Of Schools For Religious Purposes


Bronx Household of Faith v. Board of Educ. of  the City of New York, No. 07-5291 (2d Cir. Jun. 2, 2010), is a major decision. The Second Circuit held that the New York City Board of Education’s (NYCBOE) policy prohibiting the use of school facilities for “religious worship services” does not violate the First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause. Having determined that NYCBOE had created a limited public forum, the majority concluded the policy satisfied the standard that restrictions imposed by the forum be viewpoint neutral and reasonable in light of the purpose served by the forum.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

November 14, 2011 in Constitutional Law, Education Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (1)

Supremes Grant Cert In Obama Care Case

Details here

Mitchell H. Rubinstein

November 14, 2011 in Employee Benefits Law, Law Review Ideas | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Lawyers Beware. Blogging May Be Considered To Be Lawyer Advertising

Virgina State Bar's Crackdown on Lawyer's Blog Raises Questions is an important undated article in the Washington Post.  It discusses a situation where the Virginia State Bar brought a charge of misconduct against a criminal lawyer, in part, because of his postings on his blog. Apparently, they were written in such a way to constitute lawyer advertising triggering the need to include a disclaimer. As the article states:

One purpose of the Web site is to market the firm and attract business, so any discussion of Hunter’s cases is considered advertising and must include a disclaimer “that puts the case results in a context that is not misleading,” the charge said.

Hunter’s case, which is scheduled for a hearing Oct. 18, appears to be the first time the Virginia State Bar has lodged a formal charge against an attorney over blogging and whether it violates advertising rules. State bar counsel Edward Davis would neither confirm nor deny the existence of previous charges against lawyers over blogs and advertising, but there is no record of disciplinary action against Virginia attorneys regarding the matter, according to the bar’s archives of disciplinary actions dating back to 1999. The bar can suspend or disbar attorneys found in violation of legal ethics.

The blog can be found here. 

This raises many interesting legal issues ripe for law review commentary.

Mitchell H. Rubinstein 

Hat Tip: New York Public Personnel Law 


November 7, 2011 in Blogs, Legal, Law Review Ideas, Lawyers | Permalink | Comments (0)