Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Emoticons and Emojis in Appellate Opinions

Professor Eric Goldman of Santa Clara University School of Law observed that as "emoticons and emojis play an increasingly important role in how we communicate with each other, they will increasingly raise legal issues." Eric Goldman, Surveying the Law of Emojis, Santa Clara University School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 8-17, at 5.

This week, a "smiley face" and the "pile of poo" emoji appeared in Emerson v. Dart, an opinion of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, The Seventh Circuit was quoting a Facebook post that used both the smiley face and the emoji. The Facebook post was written by a plaintiff who was attempting to dissuade employees of the Cook County Department of Corrections from assisting the County in its defense of the plaintiff's discrimination claim.

The Seventh Circuit opinion does not discuss the smiley face or the emoji. They are simply in a quote in the opinion. But their presence illustrates that lawyers and legal writing professors will have to start dealing with these new forms of communication that will raise issues as to their interpretation (and other legal issues flagged in Professor Goldman's article.

Hat tip to Aggie Baumert.

(mew)

 

August 15, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 11, 2018

South Texas is Hiring

South Texas College of Law Houston invites applications from both experienced and entry-level faculty for two full-time, tenure-track Legal Research & Writing positions beginning in the 2019-2020 academic year.  All legal research and writing faculty positions at the law school are tenure-track or tenured.  The school seeks candidates with outstanding academic records who are committed to both excellence in teaching and sustained scholarly achievement.  Individuals whose backgrounds will contribute to the diversity of the faculty are encouraged to apply.

 

South Texas College of Law Houston provides a diverse body of students with the opportunity to obtain an exceptional legal education, preparing graduates to serve their community and the profession with distinction.  The school, located in downtown Houston, was founded in 1923 and is the oldest law school in Houston. South Texas is a private, nonprofit, independent law school, fully accredited by the American Bar Association and a member of the Association of American Law Schools, with 65 full-time and 37 adjunct professors serving a student body of 931 full and part-time students. 

 

South Texas is home to the most decorated advocacy program in the United States, which, alongside the LRW program, boasts countless best brief awards.  STCL Houston students benefit from six additional Centers of Excellence:  The Frank Evans Center for Conflict Resolution, The Harry L. Reed Oil and Gas Law Institute, the Institute for International Legal Practice and National Security, the Legal Research & Writing Program, The Randall O. Sorrels Legal Clinics, and the Transactional Practice Center. 

 

The LRW Program is committed to excellence in preparing students for practice. Its faculty members are also committed to being collegial and supportive of each other’s teaching, research, and service. The LRW Program leads the nation in students winning first-place Best Brief awards from the national Scribes competition.

 

Please submit your cover letter, CV, and contact information for professional references, and address your application to Professor Maxine Goodman, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee.  You may email your application to mgoodman@stcl.edu You may also apply through standard mail to Professor Maxine Goodman, South Texas College of Law Houston, 1303 San Jacinto Street, Houston, TX 77002-7006. The positions will be open until filled.

 

Hat tip to Prof. Amanda Harmon Cooley

 

(mew)

August 11, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Brandeis is Hiring

The University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law invites applicants for a tenure-track position in the school's first-year legal analysis and writing course. The successful applicant will begin in July 2019. Contact Professor JoAnne Sweeney at the University of Louisville for more information.

(mew)

August 4, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, August 3, 2018

Do You Have Access to Free Legal Research on Casemaker or Fastcase?

Many state and local bar associations offer free legal research tools as a benefit of bar association membership. The two main companies offering their services through state and local bar associations are Fastcase and Casemaker.

Here's the list of jurisdictions of state and local bar associations that offer access to Casemaker:

  1. Alabama State Bar
  2. Alaska Bar Association
  3. Colorado Bar Association
  4. Connecticut Bar Association
  5. Idaho State Bar
  6. Hampden County Bar (MA)
  7. Indiana State Bar Association
  8. Kansas Bar Association
  9. Kentucky Bar Association
  10. Maine State Bar Association
  11. State Bar of Michigan
  12. Nebraska State Bar Association
  13. New Hampshire Bar Assocation
  14. New York City Bar Association
  15. Bar Association of Erie County (NY)
  16. Monroe County Bar Association (NY)
  17. Oneida County Bar Association (NY)
  18. State Bar Association of North Dakota
  19. Ohio State Bar Association
  20. Pennsylvania Bar Association
  21. Rhode Island Bar Association
  22. Santa Clara County Bar Association (CA)
  23. Schenectady County Bar (NY)
  24. State Bar of Texas
  25. Utah State Bar
  26. Vermont Bar Association
  27. Washington State Bar Association
  28. Wyoming State Bar

Here's the list of state, local, and specialty bar associations that offer access to Fastcase:

  1. Akron Bar Association
  2. Alameda County Bar Association
  3. Allegheny County Law Library
  4. American Immigration Lawyers Association
  5. State Bar of Arizona
  6. Arkansas Bar Association
  7. Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  8. Columbus Bar Association
  9. Dayton Bar Association
  10. D.C. Bar
  11. Delaware State Bar Association
  12. Federal Circuit Bar Association
  13. The Florida Bar
  14. State Bar of Georgia
  15. Hamilton County Law Libary
  16. Hawaii State Bar Association
  17. Illinois State Bar Association
  18. Iowa State Bar Association
  19. Jenkins Law Library (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
  20. Los Angeles County Law Library
  21. Louisiana State Bar Association
  22. Massachusetts Bar Association
  23. Maryland State Bar Association
  24. Minnesota State Bar Association
  25. The Mississippi Bar
  26. The Missouri Bar
  27. State Bar of Montana
  28. National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
  29. National Creditors Bar Association
  30. State Bar of Nevada
  31. New Jersey State Bar Association
  32. New York State Bar Association
  33. State Bar of New Mexico
  34. North Carolina Bar Association
  35. Oklahoma Bar Association
  36. Oregon State Bar
  37. Toledo Bar Association
  38. South Carolina Bar
  39. San Fernando Valley Bar Association
  40. State Bar of South Dakota
  41. Tennessee Bar Association
  42. State Bar of Texas
  43. Virginia State Bar
  44. Virgin Islands Bar Association
  45. West Virginia State Bar

If you're a member of one of the bar associations listed above, be sure to learn about the research resources available through Casemaker or Fastcase.

(mew)

 

August 3, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Free Legal-Research Tools through the Law Library of Congress and Other Sources

ABA Standing Committee LLOC LogoThe American Bar Association Annual Meeting continues in Chicago with hundreds of meetings and programs. One of those programs is "How to LLOC Logo (Tree)Conduct FREE Legal Research Online," presented by Barbara Bavis, the Bibliographic and Research Instruction Librarian at the Law Library of Congress. The program was sponsored by the ABA Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress. Here's some of the information that was shared during the two-hour program:

The Law Library of Congress is the world's largest law library. It was established by law in 1832 as a separate department of the Library of Congress to serve the legal research needs of all three branches of government. It is the largest law library in the world with more than 2.9 million volumes of federal, state, and foreign materials, including codes, constitutions, official gazettes, law journals, secondary sources, and other legal materials from 267 nations and jurisdictions. It includes research materials from countries that no longer exist as separate countries (such as Sikkim).

Barbara BavisThe Guide to Law Online is a legal portal with more than 9,000 links to annotated compilations of Internet links. It is organized by jurisdiction and topic and includes international, U.S., and state materials. It provides links to the full text of laws, regulations, and court decisions. There's also a link to the Indigenous Law Portal, which includes links to American Indian constitutions and legal materials.

Current Legal Topics is a resource with current international issues, in-depth legal commentary and comparisons of international and foreign laws, and extensive bibliographic resources.

The Global Legal Monitor provides worldwide legal news and is frequently updated. It may be searched by topic, country, keywords, author, date, and other terms.

In Custodia Legis is the blog for the Law Library of Congress. It publishes new posts on research guides, current legal trends, information about changes and additions to Congress.gov, significant international law developments, legal history, and "arcana" (inspired by rare items in the collection of the Law Library of Congress.

The program on cost-effective legal research also included information on free legislative and regulatory research, judicial opinions and citators, judicial records and briefs, and presidential documents. 

Photo: Barbara Bavis (Bibliographic and Research Instruction Librarian at the Law Library of Congress) and Professor Mark E. Wojcik (Incoming Chair of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress).

(mew)

August 3, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 2, 2018

The Power of Personal Narrative: The Role of Compelling Storytelling in Criminal and Civil Cases

Scribes-ABA CLE 2018The Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association includes several panels on legal research and writing. One such panel is “The Power of Personal Narrative: The Role of Compelling Storytelling in Criminal and Civil Cases.” The program was co-sponsored by The John Marshall Law School and Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers.

Crafting a compelling narrative is a skill all attorneys should master. This panel featured English Professor Jill Patterson, a former Soros Justice Fellow who serves as the Case Storyteller for the Texas Regional Public Defenders Office for Capital Cases. Professor Patterson regularly works as a litigation team member, interviewing capital clients and helping the attorneys develop the client’s narrative and the themes for trial. She described techniques for developing powerful personal narratives for clients.

Her presentation was followed by attorney-filmmaker Doug Passon, who has pioneered the field of producing videos for sentencing hearings.

Pictured here (from left to right) are: Moderator Darby Dickerson, Dean and Professor at The John Marshall Law School and Past President if Scribes—The American Society of Legal Writers, Chicago, Illinois; Professor Jill Patterson, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas; Doug Passon, President and Creative Director, Doug Passon Law, Scottsdale, Arizona; Natalie Chan, Sidley Austin LLP, Chicago, Illinois; and Anthony Franze, Author and Counsel at Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, Washington, D.C.

(mew)

August 2, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Art and Craft of Legal Writing: Advice from Master Writers

Scribes-ABA-CLE 2018 Panel 1The 2018 American Bar Association Annual Meeting in Chicago includes several programs on legal writing and research. One such program is "The Art and Craft of Legal Writing: Advice from Master Writers," held on Thursday, August 2, 2018 at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago as part of the ABA's "CLE in the City." The program was co-sponsored by The John Marshall Law School and Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers.

Pictured here (from left to right) are: Professor Mark E. Wojcik (President of Scribes–The American Society of Legal Writers and Professor, The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, Illinois); Linda Coberly, (Managing Partner, Winston Strawn, Chicago, Illinois); Anthony Franze (Acclaimed Author and Counsel, Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, Washington, D.C.); and panel moderator Paula Hudson Holderman (President of The John Marshall Law School Board of Trustees, Chicago, Illinois).

August 2, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Style Manual for the Supreme and Appellate Courts of Illinois

The Style Manual for the Supreme and Appellate Courts of Illinois (5th ed. 2017) is available by clicking here. It's well worth a look for any Illinois practitioner.

(mew)

 

August 1, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Legal Writing Programs at the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago

The American Bar Association Young Lawyers' Division will present a one-hour program called “So You Think You’re Done With Legal Writing? Think Again!” on Friday, August 3, 2018 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The presenter will be Professor Mark E. Wojcik of The John Marshall Law School in Chicago.

Professor Wojcik is the President of Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers; the incoming Chair of the ABA Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress; and the 2018 recipient of the Burton Award for Outstanding Contributions to Legal Writing Education. The moderator will be John Rice of Elmore, Stone & Caffey PLLC.

The program will be held at the Chicago Marriott Downtown, 5th Floor,.

This is only one of the legal research and writing programs being held during the ABA Annual Meeting in Chicago.

August 1, 2018 | Permalink | Comments (0)