California Pulse

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    Mark Geragos Owes LA Times $218K In Fees Over Libel Suit

    Attorney Mark Geragos must pay the Los Angeles Times $218,000 in attorney fees and costs after the paper defeated his libel suit challenging its coverage of a settlement for Armenian genocide victims, a California state judge said, rejecting Geragos' contention that the defendants "are seeking a windfall."

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    Rapid Response Team Releases AI Guidance For State Courts

    An artificial intelligence rapid response team created by state judiciary leaders has released interim guidance and resources to help state courts navigate AI technologies, the National Center for State Courts said Wednesday.

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    Carlton Fields Names New Leaders Of 3 Practice Groups

    Carlton Fields PA announced that three Florida-based attorneys were named leaders of the firm's business transactions, cybersecurity and privacy and intellectual property practice groups.

  • Messner Reeves Accused Of Losing Client's $700K Deposit

    Colorado-based Messner Reeves LLP is being sued in California state court by a Florida financing consultant that claims the firm failed to protect a $700,000 interest deposit it made as part of a client's business loan.

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    MoFo Brings On Simpson Thacher Private Equity Ace In SF

    Morrison Foerster LLP is bolstering its finance team, announcing Wednesday it is bringing in a Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP private equity pro as a partner in its San Francisco office.

  • Cochran Firm Rachets Up Fee Fight With Ex-Associate

    The Cochran Firm California is escalating its ongoing dispute over attorney fees with a former associate, alleging in a new lawsuit that the now-departed lawyer lied to a managing partner about her relationship with a client with a lucrative claim.

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    Baker McKenzie Adds San Francisco Tax Pro From Boutique

    Baker McKenzie has hired a state and local tax lawyer in San Francisco who joins the firm to broaden its ability to work with clients on a range of California tax matters, the firm announced Wednesday.

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    Lawyer's Email To Stranger Opened His Path To Be GC

    In 1999, a young law firm associate in Wichita wrote an off-the-cuff email to a fellow law school alumnus he didn't know, but who had become general counsel of a golf company in Arizona.

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    Retired Orange County Probate Judge Joins JAMS Roster

    Alternative dispute resolution service JAMS is expanding its mediation team, announcing Wednesday that it is adding a former Orange County Superior Court judge with 24 years of experience on the bench as one of its mediators.

  • Kirkland Can't Get 'Invasive' Atty Info From 2 BigLaw Firms

    A California federal magistrate judge barred Kirkland & Ellis LLP from subpoenaing confidential personnel information from a former intellectual property associate's prior employers, Paul Hastings LLP and Fish & Richardson PC, in its defense against her discrimination suit, ruling that Kirkland's subpoena requests are "invasive," irrelevant and "amazingly broad."

  • Wagner Law Adds Atty With Union-Side Background In LA

    Benefits boutique Wagner Law Group added a partner with two decades of experience advocating for unions and workers to its ranks in Los Angeles, bringing on a veteran who said he'll still be "sticking up for employees" even though he'll no longer be representing labor.

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    Fox Rothschild AI Chief Talks 'Terrifying' Deepfakes, Biased AI

    Mark McCreary, the chief artificial intelligence and information security officer at Fox Rothschild, leads his firm's internal AI strategy and provides counsel to other law firms trying to bushwhack their path through the often murky AI legal landscape, rife with hallucinated case law citations and disturbingly real deepfakes.

  • Epic Calls Apple's $73M Fees Bid An Overreach

    Epic Games blasted Apple on Friday for seeking $73.4 million in legal fees following the pair's California federal court antitrust battle over App Store payment fees, arguing that antitrust claims like Epic's are immune from legal fees and that Apple cannot wrap its demands in successful contract breach counterclaims.

  • Girardi Keese Trustee Recovers $1.8M In Fees For Exide Case

    A U.S. bankruptcy judge on Tuesday approved an agreement between the Girardi Keese bankruptcy trustee, a former attorney for the firm and the Mandell Law Firm to end an adversary proceeding connected to $1.8 million in attorney fees from a lawsuit over the toxic Exide battery plant in Vernon, California.

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    Los Angeles FBI Head, Recused From Girardi Case, Retires

    The head of the FBI's Los Angeles office, who recused himself from investigations into indicted ex-lawyer Tom Girardi, has retired after nearly a year and a half in the post, the agency said Tuesday.

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    Latham Adds Cooley Company Growth Pros In San Francisco

    Latham & Watkins LLP is expanding its West Coast corporate team, announcing Tuesday that it is bringing in a pair of Cooley LLP experts in emerging-growth companies as partners in its San Francisco Bay Area offices.

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    Fennemore Craig's 3rd Merger Of '24 Focuses On Tax Practice

    Fennemore Craig PC announced on Tuesday it is continuing its rapid growth this year through a merger with Sacramento-based tax-focused firm Wagner Kirkman Blaine Klomparens & Youmans LLP.

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    FisherBroyles Continues Growth With California Tech Partner

    Remote law firm FisherBroyles LLP announced that it hired a litigation attorney with over 20 years of experience focusing on technology patent matters and licensing as a partner in Palo Alto, California.

  • Justices Pass On Discrimination Suit Over Calif. Bar Exam

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to hear a Massachusetts patent attorney's suit alleging age discrimination is baked into the California bar exam.

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    An Atty's Path From BigLaw To Solo Practice To Legal Tech

    Attorney Eddie Nasser joined the legal technology startup Paxton AI on Jan. 29 as the company's legal product lead, leaving the practice of law behind to help with the legal tool he once used.

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    Is BigLaw Ready To Talk About Its Bullying Problem?

    The legal community exploded into debate recently after a Black associate's lawsuit accusing her former BigLaw employer of discrimination excerpted an excoriating email from a partner that some online deemed unacceptable and bullying, and others said was simply a fact of BigLaw life.

  • Atty Convicted Of $5.5M Client Theft Asks 9th Circ. To Vacate

    The prosecution of a former California personal injury attorney sent to jail for 12 years for embezzling as much as $5.5 million in clients' settlement money was riddled with error, and his conviction and sentence should be vacated, his counsel told the Ninth Circuit at a hearing Friday.

  • Drugs, Sex, Antisemitism Top Complaint Against Calif. Judge

    A California state judge is facing an ethics complaint that accuses him of using a cannabis oil vape pen, pantomiming "something similar to a lap dance" on a woman married to a local public defender and repeatedly calling another public defender an antisemitic slur during a camping trip.

  • Workday Deputy GC Wants Atty's Bias Suit Tossed

    A deputy general counsel for Workday urged a California federal court to dismiss her from a Black former subordinate's claims of harassment, retaliation and discrimination, arguing that the Maryland-based worker was improperly seeking the protection of California state laws.

  • Quinn Emanuel Can't Collect On LA County's $280K Legal Bill

    A Los Angeles judge on Friday dismissed Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP's lawsuit seeking to collect more than $280,000 in legal bills from Los Angeles County, saying the claims should have been filed in a counter-suit after the defendants sued the firm several years ago.

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Expert Analysis

  • BigLaw Vs. Mid-Law Summer Programs: The Pros And Cons Author Photo

    There are major differences between BigLaw and Mid-Law summer associate programs, and each approach can learn something from the other in terms of structure and scheduling, the on-the-job learning opportunities provided, and the social experiences offered, says Anna Tison at Brooks Pierce.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Do I Take Time Off? Author Photo

    David Kouba at Arnold & Porter discusses how attorneys can prioritize mental health leave and vacation despite work-related barriers to taking time off.

  • Law Firms Must Prioritize Mental Health In Internal Comms Author Photo

    The traditional structure of law firms, with their compartmentalization into silos, is an inherent challenge to mental wellness, so partners and senior lawyers should take steps to construct and disseminate internal action plans and encourage open dialogue, says Elizabeth Ortega at ECO Strategic Communications.

  • Our Current Approach To Trial Advocacy Training Is Lacking Author Photo

    The key to trial advocacy is persuasion, but current training programs focus almost entirely on technique, making it imperative that lawyers are taught to be effective storytellers and to connect with their audiences, says Chris Arledge at Ellis George.

  • How Women In Law Can Advance Toward Leadership Roles Author Photo

    Female attorneys in leadership roles inspire other women to pursue similar opportunities in a male-dominated field, and for those who aspire to lead, prioritizing collaboration, inclusivity and integrity is key, says Kim Yelkin at Foley & Lardner.

  • The Case That Took Me From Prosecutor To Defense Attorney Author Photo

    Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Moira Penza, now at Wilkinson Stekloff, recalls the challenges of her first case as a civil defense attorney — a multibillion-dollar multidistrict class action against Allergan — and the lessons she learned about building rapport in the courtroom and with co-counsel.

  • The Importance Of Legal Macroeconomics Education For Attys Author Photo

    Most legal professionals lack understanding of the macroeconomic trends unique to the legal industry, like the rising cost of law school and legal services, which contributes to an unfair and inaccessible justice system, so law school courses and continuing legal education requirements in this area are essential, says Bob Glaves at the Chicago Bar Foundation.

  • What ABA Student Well-Being Standards Mean For Law Firms Author Photo

    While the American Bar Association's recent amendments to its law school accreditation standards around student well-being could have gone further, legal industry employers have much to learn from the ABA's move and the well-being movement that continues to gain traction in law schools, says David Jaffe at the American University Washington College of Law.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Do I Build Rapport In New In-House Role? Author Photo

    Tim Parilla at LinkSquares explains how new in-house lawyers can start developing relationships with colleagues both within and outside their legal departments in order to expand their networks, build their brands and carve their paths to leadership positions.

  • What Attys Should Consider Before Taking On Pro Bono Work
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    Piper Hoffman and Will Lowrey at Animal Outlook lay out suggestions for attorneys to maximize the value of their pro bono efforts, from crafting engagement letters to balancing workloads — and they explain how these principles can foster a more rewarding engagement for both lawyers and nonprofits.

  • 7 Ways Attys Can Improve Their LinkedIn Summaries Author Photo

    Lawyers can use LinkedIn to strengthen their thought leadership position, generate new business, explore career opportunities, and better position themselves and their firms in search results by writing a well-composed, optimized summary that demonstrates their knowledge and experience, says Guy Alvarez at Good2bSocial.

  • How Law Firms And Attys Can Combat Imposter Syndrome Author Photo

    Imposter syndrome is rampant in the legal profession, especially among lawyers from underrepresented backgrounds, leading to missed opportunities and mental health issues — but firms can provide support in numerous ways, and attorneys can use therapeutic strategies to quiet their inner critic, says Helen Pamely at Rosling King.

  • The Law Firm Qualities Partners Seek In Lateral Moves Author Photo

    In 2022, partners considering lateral moves have new priorities, and firms that hope to recruit top talent will need to communicate their strategy for growth, engage on hot issues like origination credit and diversity initiatives, and tailor their integration plans toward expanding partners’ client base, says Gloria Sandrino at Lateral Link.

  • Small Steps Can Help Employers Beat Attorney Burnout Author Photo

    Lawyers are experiencing burnout on a massive, unprecedented scale due to the pandemic, but law firms and institutional players can and should make a difference by focusing on small, practical solutions that protect their attorneys’ most precious personal resource and professional commodity — time, says Chad Sarchio, president of the District of Columbia Bar.

  • The Evolving Role Of The Law Firm Legal Secretary Author Photo

    Technological shifts during the pandemic and beyond should force firms to rethink how legal secretaries can not only better support timekeepers but also participate in elevating client service, bifurcating the role into an administrative support position and a more elevated practice support role, says Lauren Chung at HBR Consulting.

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