July 31, 2011
New ABA publication: "Rantings of a Partner ... and Pushback from the Associate"
Law firm partners have no shortage of opinions about associates. And associates have plenty to say about working with partners. This new book gives both parties a forum to express their views about the current practice of law. Among the rantings and pushback are invaluable tips and advice for succeeding in a law firm.
- Research and Writing
- Mentoring and Development
- Client Relations and Marketing
- The Case
- Office Politics and Etiquette
- Tips for Success
The issues represented in this book come from partners and associates across the country espousing themes like enjoy your work, give associates meaningful assignments,
teach your associates how to market, and "own" your work.
Some of the material is funny. Some of it is eye-opening. Some of it you will disagree with and dismiss. But all of it can be educational--and can help make you a better lawyer.
Big hat tip to the Law Librarian Blog.
New article of interest: "Black's Law Dictionary: The Making of an American Standard"
This article is written by Sarah Yates and can be found at 103 Law Libr. J. 175 (2011).
From the abstract:
This article examines the history of Black's Law Dictionary, the methods used in its creation, and its evolution. It then compares Black's with its competitors and identifies factors both inherent in the works themselves and driven by external forces that have led to today's primacy of Black's over other law dictionaries.
Are the Kardashian Sisters “Atrocious and Utterly Intolerable?”
Our favorite among the goofy lawsuits we came across this month comes from the Third Circuit, in the case of Goodson v. Kardashian, No. 10-3976 (1/6/2011). This was a complaint by a Federal prisoner against the Kardashian sisters of reality TV fame. The complaint alleged a federal claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and state law claims of intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, stating that the defendants’ antics on their reality television programs caused the plaintiff intense emotional and psychological strain. After finding that the Section 1983 claim failed because the defendants were not state actors, the Court dismissed the state claims on the ground that liability for intentional or negligent infliction of mental distress lies “only where the conduct at issue has been atrocious and utterly intolerable in a civilized community." The decision could thus be interpreted as an adjudication that Keeping Up with the Kardashians is not atrocious and utterly intolerable in a civilized community. The plaintiff did not help his case by requesting in his complaint the following apology: "D.J., we are sorry for emotionally stressing you out & we love you!" We are pleased to note that no lawyer had anything to do with the filing of this lawsuit.
It’s been a good year for the Sisters K, legally speaking. In June, a judge dismissed a $75 million suit against them based on their withdrawal of an endorsement for a prepaid debit card. The Court noted the “apparently universal condemnation of the product's profit making features.” Be careful the company
ABA approves measure to ensure more law grad employment transparency
From the online ABA Journal blog:
It's official: The ABA's Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has approved changes to its annual law school questionnaire to include more employment and placement information about graduates.
The changes, recommended last month by the council's questionnaire committee, were announced in a press release by the section Wednesday.
The section said in a statement (PDF) that it believes the new information will bring additional transparency to the data reporting system it uses and provide useful information to assist prospective students and graduates in making career decisions.
Under the changes, law schools will be required to report how many graduates are employed in jobs requiring a law degree; how many are in jobs in which a law degree is preferred; how many are in another professional or nonprofessional job; and how many are in jobs whose type is unknown.
Law schools also must disclose how many graduates are working in full-time or part-time jobs, whether those jobs are short-term or long-term and how many of them are funded by the school from which the job-holder graduated.
Schools must report how many graduates are unemployed or pursuing a graduate degree, and how many of the unemployed are looking or not looking for a job. They also must identify the top three states in which their graduates are employed, the number of graduates working in each state and the number of graduates working overseas. These and other proposed changes were recommended in June.
Collection of the new data will begin next spring for the graduating class of 2011 and will be displayed on the section's web site by late spring or early summer. The information will be published in the ABA-LSAC Official Guide to ABA-Approved Law Schools and on the Law School Admission Council's website.