Legal Ethics

  • February 21, 2024

    Former Texas Atty Gets 50 Years For 'Ponzi-Type' Client Fraud

    A Texas federal judge sentenced a former San Antonio lawyer to 50 years in prison after he pled guilty to mishandling millions in client funds to support his "extravagant lifestyle," the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Texas said in a statement Wednesday.

  • February 21, 2024

    Voters Want Ga. Officials Sanctioned For Withheld Evidence

    Voting rights advocates who faced off with Georgia election officials at trial last month are now seeking sanctions against the Coffee County, Georgia, board of elections and its attorneys for allegedly withholding evidence related to a January 2021 voting machine breach in the county and for knowingly allowing a witness to lie under oath.

  • February 21, 2024

    GM Bolt Buyers' Attys Blasted For 'Wasting' Judge's Time

    A California federal judge on Wednesday scolded lawyers who filed about 150 "cookie cutter" lawsuits alleging General Motors knowingly sold Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicles with defective batteries, asking why they shouldn't be sanctioned for "wasting" court time as claims for some model years will have to be withdrawn.

  • February 21, 2024

    Justices Urged To Turn Away $285M Panama Canal Award Suit

    The operator of the Panama Canal on Tuesday urged the U.S. Supreme Court to turn away a case in which $285 million in arbitral awards are being challenged over an arbitrator's "evident partiality," saying close relationships between arbitrators are so "ubiquitous" in international arbitration that they are unremarkable.

  • February 21, 2024

    Morgan Stanley Bias Award Fight Belongs In NC, Judge Says

    A Morgan Stanley unit must challenge an arbitrator's conclusion that it discriminated against a white male former banker in North Carolina, where he last worked, a Georgia federal judge ruled, saying the arbitrator's presence in Atlanta during the virtual proceeding isn't enough to tether the case to the Peach State.

  • February 21, 2024

    NC Justices Hint At Coverage For Firm's Driver Privacy Row

    The North Carolina Supreme Court seemed skeptical Wednesday of an insurer's contention that mailers sent by a law firm to car crash victims based on public accident reports couldn't be considered coverage-triggering publication of material that violates a person's right to privacy.

  • February 21, 2024

    Mass. High Court Pick Challenged Over Past With Governor

    Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey's pick for the state's highest court faced questions Wednesday about potential conflicts of interest arising from her past romantic relationship with the governor from members of the panel that votes to confirm judicial nominations in the state, a rare pushback by the Governor's Council.

  • February 21, 2024

    Tully Rinckey's Employment Terms Violated Rules, Panel Says

    The founders of Tully Rinckey PLLC should be suspended for 90 days for placing improper employment restrictions on people who worked in the firm's Washington, D.C., office, an attorney ethics committee has recommended.

  • February 21, 2024

    Sen. Whitehouse Slams Supreme Court Fact-Finding

    Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee's federal courts subpanel, blasted in a new law review article the U.S. Supreme Court's "improper" fact-finding under Chief Justice John Roberts.

  • February 21, 2024

    Unlicensed Atty Accused Of Bungling Nonprofit Registration

    A Maryland-registered attorney was hit with a lawsuit in Georgia state court Wednesday accusing him of bungling a former client's nonprofit registration and practicing without being properly licensed in the Peach State.

  • February 21, 2024

    Novel Ruling Finds NJ Prosecutor Conflict Doesn't DQ Office

    Addressing a case of first impression, a New Jersey appellate panel turned to case law in other states in concluding Wednesday that a supervising prosecutor's personal conflict does not automatically disqualify the entire office.

  • February 21, 2024

    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.

  • February 21, 2024

    Connecticut Atty To Settle Client's Suit Over Cash Mishap

    A Connecticut lawyer who allegedly sent part of his client's $286,000 real estate transaction to a purported fraudster posing as that client with a fake email address has come to a "tentative settlement" to resolve the malpractice suit against him, new state court filings show.

  • February 21, 2024

    Judge Floats Sanctions For Union's 'Bad Faith' Recusal Bid

    A Michigan federal judge won't recuse himself from a defamation case involving two unions after a claim was raised that he expressed bias against the East Coast, instead asking the defendants why sanctions shouldn't be imposed for "bad faith" litigating.

  • February 21, 2024

    Bankman-Fried Gets New Attys After Waiving Crypto Conflict

    A Manhattan federal judge signed off Wednesday on Sam Bankman-Fried's choice of new counsel ahead of his fraud sentencing, despite the fact that the convicted FTX founder's new team represents an indicted ex-crypto CEO whose interests may conflict with his own.

  • February 21, 2024

    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.

  • February 21, 2024

    How Trump's Hush Money Trial Helps Or Hurts Jack Smith

    Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's porn star hush money case against Donald Trump is set to be the first criminal trial of a former president in U.S. history, a development that carries potential risks and benefits for special counsel Jack Smith, especially as one expert characterized the New York case as "legally and factually weak."

  • February 21, 2024

    Law Firms Rip Cuomo Subpoenas As 'Abusive' And 'Wasteful'

    Law firms Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP and Vladeck Raskin & Clark PC said in a letter Tuesday filed in federal court that former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's subpoena regarding their sex harassment investigation "is plainly improper and is another in a string of abusive and wasteful tactics."

  • February 21, 2024

    Barnes & Thornburg Beats Ga. Malpractice Claim On Appeal

    A Georgia state appeals court has upheld the dismissal of a legal malpractice claim brought by a trustee for a former Barnes & Thornburg LLP client, finding there was "no merit" to her arguments that the firm violated the standard of care and sunk the trust's insurance suit.

  • February 21, 2024

    NY Judge Trims American Idol Singer's Suit Against NY Atty

    A New York federal judge on Wednesday trimmed a suit against an attorney from a former American Idol contestant, allowing the artist to proceed only with her breach of fiduciary duty and faithless servant claims.

  • February 21, 2024

    Ex-Bank CEO Ends Holland & Knight Overbilling Suit

    Republic First Bancorp's former CEO Vernon Hill II ended his lawsuit accusing Holland & Knight LLP of overcharging him with a $7 million bill for what he claimed was "ineffective and unsatisfactory" representation in legal matters over his ouster from the bank.

  • February 21, 2024

    Giuliani Seeks New Trial, Will Appeal $148M Defamation Award

    Rudy Giuliani is urging a Washington, D.C., federal judge to rethink a jury verdict directing him to pay $148 million to two Georgia election workers he was found liable for defaming as he tees up an appeal of the jury award to the D.C. Circuit.

  • February 20, 2024

    Giuliani Can Contest $148M Fine But Not With His Own Money

    A New York bankruptcy judge on Tuesday allowed Rudy Giuliani to seek a new trial for $148 million in damages he was ordered to pay for defaming two Georgia poll workers, but said the former mayor can't use money from his bankruptcy estate to pay his legal bills.

  • February 20, 2024

    Ill. Public Defender Sues Over Display Of Israeli Army Photo

    An Illinois public defender filed a First Amendment lawsuit against her county employer after she was reprimanded for a photograph of her holding a gun in front of an Israeli flag that she displayed in an office area in response to the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack in Israel.

  • February 20, 2024

    Epstein's Attorney, Accountant Accused Of Aiding Trafficking

    Two survivors of sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein claim his longtime lawyer and accountant played essential parts in the disgraced financier's sex trafficking enterprise by creating a complex financial infrastructure to keep the money flowing, according to a proposed class action filed in New York federal court.

Expert Analysis

  • A Post-Mortem Analysis Of Stroock's Demise

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    After the dissolution of 147-year-old firm Stroock late last year shook up the legal world, a post-mortem analysis of the data reveals a long list of warning signs preceding the firm’s collapse — and provides some insight into how other firms might avoid the same disastrous fate, says Craig Savitzky at Leopard Solutions.

  • Series

    Coaching High School Wrestling Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Coaching my son’s high school wrestling team has been great fun, but it’s also demonstrated how a legal career can benefit from certain experiences, such as embracing the unknown, studying the rules and engaging with new people, says Richard Davis at Maynard Nexsen.

  • SG's Office Is Case Study To Help Close Legal Gender Gap

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    As women continue to be underrepresented in the upper echelons of the legal profession, law firms could learn from the example set by the Office of the Solicitor General, where culture and workplace policies have helped foster greater gender equality, say attorneys at Ocean Tomo.

  • Verizon Benefits Ruling Clears Up Lien Burden Of Proof

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    A Rhode Island federal court recently ruled that a Verizon benefits plan could not recoup a former employee’s settlement funds from the attorney who represented her in a personal injury case, importantly clarifying two Employee Retirement Income Security Act burden of proof issues that were previously unsettled, says Mark DeBofsky at DeBofsky Law.

  • Reimagining Law Firm Culture To Break The Cycle Of Burnout

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    While attorney burnout remains a perennial issue in the legal profession, shifting post-pandemic expectations mean that law firms must adapt their office cultures to retain talent, say Kevin Henderson and Eric Pacifici at SMB Law Group.

  • Series

    Competing In Dressage Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    My lifelong participation in the sport of dressage — often called ballet on horses — has proven that several skills developed through training and competition are transferable to legal work, especially the ability to harness focus, persistence and versatility when negotiating a deal, says Stephanie Coco at V&E.

  • Opinion

    High Court's Gifts Problem Taints Public Corruption Cases

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    A history of U.S. Supreme Court justices failing to disclose luxurious gifts from wealthy donors coincides with a troubling line of court precedent overturning jury convictions in public corruption cases, indicating that perhaps justices aren't presently fit to be making these decisions, says Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.

  • The Legal Industry Needs A Cybersecurity Paradigm Shift

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    As law firms face ever-increasing risks of cyberattacks and ransomware incidents, the legal industry must implement robust cybersecurity measures and privacy-centric practices to preserve attorney-client privilege, safeguard client trust and uphold the profession’s integrity, says Ryan Paterson at Unplugged.

  • 5 Reasons Associates Shouldn't Take A Job Just For Money

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    As a number of BigLaw firms increase salary scales for early-career attorneys, law students and lateral associates considering new job offers should weigh several key factors that may matter more than financial compensation, say Albert Tawil at Lateral Hub and Ruvin Levavi at Power Forward.

  • Series

    Playing Competitive Tennis Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    My experience playing competitive tennis has highlighted why prioritizing exercise and stress relief, maintaining perspective under pressure, and supporting colleagues in pursuit of a common goal are all key aspects of championing a successful legal career, says Madhumita Datta at Lowenstein Sandler.

  • Series

    The Pop Culture Docket: Judge Djerassi On Super Bowl 52

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    Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas Judge Ramy Djerassi discusses how Super Bowl 52, in which the Philadelphia Eagles prevailed over the New England Patriots, provides an apt metaphor for alternative dispute resolution processes in commercial business cases.

  • Considerations For Lawyer Witnesses After FTX Trial

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    Sam Bankman-Fried's recent trial testimony about his lawyers' involvement in FTX's business highlights the need for attorney-witnesses to understand privilege issues in order to avoid costly discovery disputes and, potentially, uncover critical evidence an adversary might seek to conceal, says Lawrence Bluestone at Genova Burns.

  • Employee Experience Strategy Can Boost Law Firm Success

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    Amid continuing business uncertainty, law firms should consider adopting a holistic employee experience strategy — prioritizing consistency, targeting signature moments and leveraging measurement tools — to maximize productivity and profitability, says Haley Revel at Calibrate Consulting.

  • Series

    Competing In Triathlons Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    While practicing law and competing in long-distance triathlons can make work and life feel unbalanced at times, participating in the sport has revealed important lessons about versatility, self-care and perseverance that apply to the office as much as they do the racecourse, says Laura Heusel at Butler Snow.

  • Opinion

    History Reveals Folly Of Absolute Presidential Immunity

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    As a federal appeals court grapples with former President Donald Trump’s claims that he’s immune from prosecution on election interference charges, it’s a fitting time for lawyers to reflect on the rule of law — from 13th century jurisprudence to Watergate and the Clinton impeachment — and how the idea of absolute presidential immunity is unwise, says attorney Steven Reske.

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