Courts Litigation

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis, right, talks with David Moore following her office's refusal to issue marriage licenses at the Rowan County Courthouse in Morehead, Ky., Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015. Although her appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was denied, Davis still refuses to issue marriage licenses.

Defiant Ky. Clerk Ordered to Court in Same-Sex Marriage Standoff

By Marcia Coyle |

A federal judge in Ashland, Kentucky, has summoned a county clerk who continues to defy a court order to issue same-sex marriage licenses, and her entire staff to appear Thursday to explain why she should not be held in contempt.

Bert Rein, of Wiley Rein, addresses the media outside the U.S. Supreme Court, on the day of oral arguments in Shelby County v. Holder, a case challenging Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  February 27, 2013.

Wiley Rein Denied $2M in Legal Fees in Voting Case

By Zoe Tillman |

Wiley Rein lawyers who successfully challenged a section of the Voting Rights Act in the U.S. Supreme Court are not entitled to collect $2 million in legal fees from the government, a federal appeals court in Washington ruled on Tuesday.

Acting As Plaintiff, Lawyer Loses Award in Drink Coupon Case

By Amanda Bronstad |

Prominent class action attorney Adam Levitt has been stripped of the $15,000 incentive award he received as a lead plaintiff in litigation over Southwest Airlines Co. drink coupons after he failed to disclose he was co-counsel with his own lawyer in a separate case.

Ex-Law School Employee in Fraud Case Fires Back

By Karen Sloan |

A former graduate and employee of Arizona Summit Law School is claiming that she has ample grounds to sue for discrimination and fraud despite the school’s arguments that her lawsuit is meritless.

New Look at Juvenile Sentencing

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court this term will decide whether its 2012 ban on mandatory life without parole sentences for juvenile murderers is retroactive. But some of those offenders and their lawyers hope for more from the justices.

<b>CALIFORNIA:</b> Protesters have long debated constitutionality of the state’s system.

Death Penalty Under Review

By Marcia Coyle |

A federal appellate panel on Aug. 31 will begin to determine whether California's "dysfunctional" death penalty system is unconstitutional.

Civil Actions

Cases recently filed in the Washington-area district courts.

<b>SEARCHED:</b> Federal agents in 2013 take evidence from the Florida office of Dr. Salomon Melgen, a co-defendant in the public corruption case against Sen. Robert Menendez in New Jersey court.

Prosecutors Push Back Against Menendez in Corruption Case

By Charles Toutant |

In a sharp rejoinder to U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez's effort to dismiss his corruption indictment, the U.S. Department of Justice said last week the New Jersey Democrat is interpreting the U.S. Constitution's speech or debate clause broadly to immunize criminal activity.

Verdicts & Settlements

A summary of this week's notable cases.

Police outside the U.S. Supreme Court moments after the court announced its opinion.  June 26, 2015.

Speech Restrictions on Supreme Court Plaza Upheld

By Marcia Coyle |

The elevated, white marble plaza in front of the U.S. Supreme Court's home is a nonpublic forum where demonstrations and displays are constitutionally prohibited, a Washington federal appeals panel ruled Friday. In 'Hodge v. Talkin,' the unanimous three-judge panel, led by Judge Sri Srinivasan, upheld the constitutionality of the federal law barring assemblages and displays as it applied to the high court's plaza. The court reversed a trial judge.

NSA headquarters.

DC Circuit Overturns Injunction Against NSA's Phone Program

By Mike Sacks and Zoe Tillman |

A federal appeals court in Washington on Friday overturned a preliminary injunction that would have barred the National Security Agency's bulk collection of Americans’ phone records. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued separate opinions with the bottom line that the plaintiff, Washington lawyer Larry Klayman, had not presented enough evidence to justify a court order against the NSA call-records program. The court remanded for further proceedings, saying the case was not moot by the adoption of the USA Freedom Act.

Sanctions Ordering Jones Day Partner to Make Video Tossed

By Amanda Bronstad |

A federal appeals court has reversed an unprecedented sanction that required a Jones Day partner to make a training video for the firm’s lawyers on how to avoid improper objections and other misconduct in depositions.

Dickstein Shapiro Shakes Malpractice Claims From Encyclopaedia Britannica

By Sheri Qualters |

A Washington federal judge has dismissed Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc.'s malpractice case against Dickstein Shapiro over the firm’s patent prosecution work for the company, finding that intellectual property at issue was ineligible for patenting.

Elena Kagan.

Kagan: Law Schools Must Do More to Boost Student Writing Skills

By Tony Mauro |

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan thinks American law schools—including those in the top tier—need to "think in a deep way" about how to help their students become better writers.

Advertisement promoting high fructose corn syrup, part of a campaign by the Corn Refiners Association  to convince people that high fructose corn syrup isn't dangerous.

Sanctions Sought Against Ex-Squire Patton Boggs Lawyer in Sugar Case

By Amanda Bronstad |

Two corn refining companies that booted Squire Patton Boggs from its high stakes lawsuit against the sugar industry are claiming one of the law firm’s former attorneys is still on the case—in violation of a judge’s disqualification order.

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis performs her job at the Rowan County Courthouse in Morehead, Ky., Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2015.

Ky. Clerk Can't Deny Gay-Marriage Licenses, Appeals Court Says

By Mike Sacks |

A federal appeals court Wednesday said a Kentucky county clerk who has resisted the U.S. Supreme Court's gay-marriage ruling on religious grounds cannot continue to withhold marriage licenses altogether from same-sex and heterosexual couples.

Ex-Ropes & Gray Associate Loses Discrimination Appeal

By Sheri Qualters |

Ropes & Gray has won a federal appeal in the case brought by a former associate who claimed racial discrimination against the Boston-based law firm. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit upheld summary judgment on Tuesday against John Ray III, who alleged he was fired after he complained about racial remarks made by Ropes & Gray partners.

Steve Berman, left, of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, riding with Jamis Hagens Berman team riders during training last year in Tucson, AZ.

For Part of the Day, Class Action Lawyer Steve Berman Is All Spin

By Katelyn Polantz |

Bicycles have circled around Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro for some time, a hobby of Steve Berman's that's grown into a marketing, athlete-development and healthy-living project over several years. Berman spoke with the NLJ this month shortly after the firm announced its new sponsorship of a team of competitive riders under age 23.

Fire boat response crews battle the blazing remnants of the off shore oil rig Deepwater Horizon, April 21, 2010.

Business Advocates Criticize High Court Denials in Key Cases

By Tony Mauro |

When U.S. Supreme Court justices are asked why they decide so few cases—only 66 signed opinions last term—they often respond with a “show me” challenge. As in: “show me the cases that we should have taken up but didn’t.”

University of Arkansas law professor Howard Brill during a press conference on Wednesday, August 26, 2015. Professor Brill has been appointed by Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson as the new Chief Justice of the State Supreme Court.

In Law School Moves: A Politician, a Prof and a Prosecutor

By Karen Sloan |

The lines between law school, the bench and politics blurred a bit this week as schools announced a number of high-profile faculty visitors and one major appointment.

Supreme Court Urged to End Life Without Parole for All Juveniles

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court this term will decide whether its 2012 ban on mandatory life without parole sentences for juvenile murderers is retroactive. But some of those offenders and their lawyers hope for more from the justices.

Justices to Weigh Meaning of Extortion

By Jamie Schuman |

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear a case in October that may hinge on the meaning of two words: "from another." The outcome could have a big effect on the charging power of federal prosecutors.

Erika Jayne performs at The Society of Singers' 21st ELLA Awards on Thursday, February 20, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California.

Spotlight's on Tom Girardi’s 'Real Housewife'

By Amanda Bronstad |

The newest addition to "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" is best known on the dance club scene. But her husband, Thomas Girardi, is a big name in the legal world.

Michael Keaton in The Merry Gentleman.

Michael Keaton Not Liable for Box Office Flop 'Merry Gentleman'

By Mike Sacks |

A federal appeals court Tuesday sided with actor Michael Keaton in a breach of contract suit brought against him by the producers behind his box office flop "Merry Gentleman." The movie, released in 2009, was Keaton’s directorial debut.

David Kendall.

Law Firm Followed Guidance on Emails, Clinton Lawyer Tells Grassley

By Mike Sacks |

David Kendall of Williams & Connolly told the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman in a terse letter on Monday that his law firm followed guidance from the State and Justice departments in handling thumb drives containing work-related emails sent to and from the personal server of Hillary Clinton during her service as secretary of State.

Banks’ Lawyers Balk at Target’s Data-Breach Deal

By Amanda Bronstad |

Plaintiffs lawyers representing some banks and financial institutions caught up in Target’s 2013 data breach say the $67 million deal struck last week between the retailer and Visa Inc. leaves their clients shortchanged.

<b>NO COOKS:</b> Chef and restaurateur  José Andrés was set to open a restaurant at a Donald Trump hotel project in downtown Washington. Andrés backed out, citing Trump's immigration comments.

Trump Versus José Andrés to Move to Different Court

By Katelyn Polantz |

The Donald Trump-owned company that's developing a luxury hotel in Washington pulled its lawsuit from federal court today against celebrity chef José Andrés and his restaurant companies. Attorneys from Seyfarth Shaw working on behalf of Trump voluntarily dismissed the suit because of a corporate law technicality, called jurisdictional diversity, according to a filing in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Rowan County Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis speaks to a gathering of supporters during a Religious Freedoms Rally at the Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort Ky., Saturday, Aug. 22, 2015.

Ky. Clerk, Couples Clash in Appeals Court Over Marriage Licenses

By Mike Sacks |

A federal appeals court that upheld same-sex marriage bans is poised to weigh in on a new dispute over whether clerks can deny licenses altogether on religious grounds. Lawyers for four same- and opposite sex couples on Sunday urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to reject a Kentucky county clerk's argument that she would suffer a "searing" injury to her religious liberty if the appeals court did not block a trial judge who ordered her to begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses by the end of the month.

Eight Steps Toward Eliminating Workplace Bullying

By Kevin O'Neill and Katherine Cooper Franklin |

Employing the jerk manager is bad for business, and in some cases creates liability for the company.

Overseas Courts Crack Down on Sex Harassment

By Erika Collins and David Reid |

Europe is decidedly employee-friendly, but cultural barriers hobble enforcement elsewhere.

clocking system

Misclassifying Hourly Workers Can Prove Costly

By Jay M. Levy |

Employers that try to save money by creating salaried positions can face double, even treble, damages.

Indianapolis Moves Beyond Manufacturing

By Sheri Qualters |

A strong job market, growth in life sciences and technology, and out-of-state work have put Indianapolis law firms in a good spot.

Detroit Shakes Off Bankruptcy, to Firms' Delight

By Sheri Qualters |

Detroit's emergence from bankruptcy last year and a rebound in automotive and other sectors are producing real estate, corporate and other legal work.

St. Louis Lawyers Welcome High-End Legal Work

By Sheri Qualters |

As development spruces up St. Louis and economic conditions brighten, several stalwart industries are directing a steady stream of legal work to area law firms.

Chicago Law Firms Catch Ride on Deal Surge

By Sheri Qualters |

The legal market in The Second City is in solid shape, due in large part to deal making and transactional work for the area's deep bench of top public companies and some newer players.

Cleveland Suits Up for Republican Convention

By Sheri Qualters |

The city of Cleveland is sprucing up for its 2016 Republican National Convention hosting duties, and law firms are getting a cut of the action.

Milwaukee Firms Bolstered By Startups and Real Estate

By Sheri Qualters |

Better economic times are brewing in Milwaukee with a boost from corporate transactions, commercial real estate deals and startup activity.

Business Flowing in the Land
of 10,000 Lakes

By Sheri Qualters |

Minneapolis's legal sector is healthy these days, amid a strong local economy and a diverse array of corporate sectors providing law firms with a varied diet of business.

Civil Actions

Cases recently filed in the Washington-area district courts.

<b>AGGRESSIVE:</b> A mountain goat, like this one in Olympic National Park, killed a hiker.

Inherent Risk of Going Wild

By Amanda Bronstad |

Summer vacations have turned tragic this year at national parks, with visitors killed by grizzly bears and falling tree limbs, and campers sickened by an outbreak of the plague.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton greets fairgoers during a visit to the Iowa State Fair, Saturday, Aug. 15, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa.

Clinton's Email Use Scrutinized

By Mike Sacks |

Hillary Clinton's use of private email at the U.S. Department of State for work purposes came under increasing scrutiny last week on Capitol Hill as members of Congress dug into secrecy and security issues.

Verdicts & Settlements

A summary of this week's notable decisions.

Thomas Boggs.

Boggs Estate Battles Woman Claiming Romantic Relationship

By Zoe Tillman and Katelyn Polantz |

The estate of Thomas Hale Boggs Jr. is locked in a legal battle with a woman who says she had a romantic and business relationship with the late super-lobbyist, the former head of Patton Boggs. The woman, local realtor Janine Davey Waxman, and Boggs' family have been fighting in courts in Maryland and Washington this year over the settlement of his estate, court records show.

LSAT Disability Accommodation Plans Under Way

By Karen Sloan |

The Law School Admission Council has until late October—when registration closes for the December Law School Admission Test—to revise its disability accommodation policies.

Courting Ashley Madison Cases? Some Plaintiffs Lawyers Demur

By Katelyn Polantz |

The AshleyMadison.com hack, which unleashed onto the Internet yesterday nearly 40 million names and email addresses of possible users who sought extramarital affairs, isn’t sexy enough for many plaintiffs lawyers.

Takeaways From a Golf Law Pro

By Katelyn Polantz |

John Minan has hit the sweet spot for lawyers. The University of San Diego School of Law professor, who specializes in water, property and land-use law, has created a greener side hustle by writing about and teaching courses on golf law. This interview is part of an occasional NLJ summer series about diversions from Big Law.

Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Court: Government Can Prosecute Citizens for Illicit Sex in Foreign Countries

By Marcia Coyle |

A federal appellate panel on Wednesday upheld the constitutionality of a federal law prohibiting citizens from engaging in non-commercial, illicit sexual conduct after traveling to a foreign country. In United States v. Bollinger, the three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit rejected a minister's claim that the law was unconstitutional because it criminalized non-commercial activity and thus exceeded Congress' authority to regulate commerce under the Foreign Commerce Clause.

U.S. Supreme Court.

Record Breaking Term for Amicus Curiae in Supreme Court Reflects New Norm

By Anthony J. Franze and R. Reeves Anderson |

In the 2014-2015 term, "friends of the court" participated in 98 percent of the Supreme Court's cases, filed nearly 800 amicus curiae briefs, and broke two records: the most amicus briefs filed in a case and the most signatories on a single brief.

Anchorage, Alaska.

Law School's Northern Exposure

By Karen Sloan |

Alaska’s nickname is The Last Frontier—an apt moniker for legal education in the only state without a law school. That’s changing, however. Next week, Seattle University School of Law opens a satellite campus enabling third-year law students to spend a full academic year studying and interning in Anchorage

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court, on the day the Court issued its decision in the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby case.  June 30, 2014.

Q&A: Law School Seeks Depoliticized Conversation About Law and Religion

By Marcia Coyle |

Religion is the new battleground following U.S. Supreme Court decisions on contraceptive health insurance and same-sex marriages, but it doesn't have to be, says the director of a new four-year project on religious freedom at Emory University School of Law. The law school recently named Mark Goldfeder, a rabbi and lawyer who leads the school's law and religion students program, the head of the new project funded by an anonymous gift of $1 million. Goldfeder talks with the SCB about the new project in this Q&A.

Paul Verkuil.

Former Law Dean Brings Federal Agency Back to Life

By Tony Mauro |

After serving as dean of two law schools, president of a university and special master in a U.S. Supreme Court case, Paul Verkuil was handed a more daunting task in 2010: reviving a federal agency that had been zero-funded for 15 years.

David Kendall.

Clinton Lawyer Informs Congress About Security Clearance, Email Safeguards

By Mike Sacks |

Only two lawyers at Williams & Connolly had access to a government-installed safe that contained thumb drives with thousands of Hillary Clinton's State Department emails, one of the attorneys, David Kendall, said in a letter to a Senate committee that was obtained by The National Law Journal. Kendall said he and partner Katherine Turner hold "Top Secret security clearances issued by the Department of State."

Manny Pacquiao, left, from the Philippines, trades blows with Floyd Mayweather Jr., during their welterweight title fight on Saturday, May 2, 2015 in Las Vegas.

In Boxing Litigation, Pacquiao and HBO Win First Round

By Amanda Bronstad |

Emmanuel "Manny" Pacquiao and Home Box Office Inc. won the first round in the litigation over his highly publicized match against Floyd Mayweather after a federal panel sent more than 40 consumer class actions to a judge in Los Angeles.

A miner works in a mine in Mbuji Mayi, Congo, Monday, July 31, 2006.

D.C. Circuit Strikes Second Blow Against 'Conflict Minerals' Rule

By Mike Sacks |

A Washington federal appeals court held Tuesday for the second time that a part of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's conflict mineral labeling rule violates the First Amendment.

Rally on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court, on the day of oral arguments in Shelby County v. Holder, a case challenging Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.  February 27, 2013.

Texas Ordered to Pay $1M in Legal Fees in Voting Rights Case

By Zoe Tillman |

Texas must pay more than $1 million in legal fees to groups that challenged the state’s redistricting plans, a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., ruled Tuesday. Perkins Coie, among the firms involved in the litigation, will receive $597,715, according to the fee award.

David Kendall.

Grassley Grills Clinton Lawyer David Kendall Over Emails

By Mike Sacks |

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, has given Williams & Connolly lawyer David Kendall a week to say whether he had the appropriate security clearance to handle thumb drives that contained potentially classified emails on the private server of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court on the day of arguments in the cases involving same-sex marriage, Obergefell v. Hodges. April 28, 2015.

Right to Marry Includes Right to Choose Spouse: In Prison, Same Sex or Not

By Marcia Coyle |

The right to marry includes the right to select one's spouse, the U.S. Supreme Court said in its landmark same-sex marriage decision. And that right to choose your spouse applies to prison inmates too, a federal appellate panel says in a ruling that points to the high court's landmark decision on gay marriage.

Judiciary Considers Scrapping 'Ancient Documents' Rule

By Zoe Tillman |

The federal judiciary is considering getting rid of a rarely used exception to the hearsay rule for "ancient documents." Now that documents can be stored electronically for long periods of time, a committee of federal judges is worried courts will face a flood of requests to admit documents under the exception.

Civil Actions

Cases recently filed in the Washington-area district courts.

Eric Garner arrest.

Police Abuse Cases Spur Plaintiffs Lawyer Business

By Amanda Bronstad |

Police brutality litigation is becoming a hot practice area for plaintiffs lawyers, who are lured by big verdicts and settlements and by the increased availability of videos depicting confrontations with officers.

Royce Lamberth.

Letter Gets Attorneys in Hot Water

By Zoe Tillman |

Two Arent Fox lawyers working with a national clemency initiative are in trouble with a federal judge in Washington for sending a letter the judge said violated court rules.

<b>SAYING YES:</b> U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph Spero sustained most of an expert panel's proposed reforms of the LSAT disabilities accommodation process.

Victory for Disability Advocates

By Karen Sloan |

In 2012, 22 named plaintiffs alleged the Law School Admission Council's accommodation procedures violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). On Aug. 7, U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph Spero issued the latest ruling in the litigation.

Verdicts & Settlements

A summary of this week's notable cases.

Suit Alleges U.S. Environmental Policy Harms Children

By Amanda Bronstad |

Prominent California plaintiffs firm Cotchett Pitre & McCarthy has filed a lawsuit alleging that the U.S. government has deprived "future generations" of their constitutional rights by allowing climate change to occur.

Birth-Defect Suits Against Zofran Maker Pile Up

By Amanda Bronstad |

More than 30 lawsuits have been filed by parents alleging that taking anti-nausea prescription Zofran for morning sickness during pregnancy caused birth defects in their children including congenital heart defects, cleft lip and cleft palate.

Massachusetts Court Upholds Sex-Trafficking Statute

By Sheri Qualters |

Massachusetts' highest court upheld the constitutionality of the state’s sex-trafficking statute on Thursday, in the court’s first ruling on the 2011 law.

Texas A&M University acquired the Texas Wesleyan School of Law in 2013.

Law Graduates File Demand for Recognition from Texas A&M

By Karen Sloan |

A group of graduates of the Texas Wesleyan University School of Law have filed a class action against Texas A&M University School of Law, which acquired their alma mater in 2013, claiming it has disavowed them as alumni.

After Flap Over a Supreme Court Brief, Howard Shipley Ships Out

By Tony Mauro |

Patent lawyer Howard Shipley, who escaped punishment by the U.S. Supreme Court in March for a jargon-filled brief he had filed that was written mainly by his client, has left Foley & Lardner to become a partner at Gordon & Rees.

Eric Garner arrest.

Plaintiffs Bar Goes After Police Brutality Cases

By Amanda Bronstad |

More plaintiffs lawyers across the country are taking on cases of police brutality, lured by big verdicts and settlements and the increased availability of videos depicting confrontations with officers.

Royce Lamberth.

Letter Gets Attorneys in Hot Water

By Zoe Tillman |

Two Arent Fox lawyers working with a national clemency initiative are in trouble with U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth in Washington for sending a letter that the judge said violated court rules.

Court's Career-Criminal Ruling Triggers Sentencing Litigation

By Marcia Coyle |

Immediately after Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. summarized from the bench his dissent in June's same-sex marriage decision, he announced that Justice Antonin Scalia had the court's opinion in the final case of that day—likely the most ignored one of that week.

Brief Argues Against Mandatory Solitary on Death Row

By Marcia Coyle |

Sixteen former corrections leaders from across the country are urging the U.S. Supreme Court to use a Virginia case to end the automatic assignment of death row inmates to solitary confinement.

<b>RICHARD KOPF:</b> “Properly done, the public’s perception of the federal judiciary is enhanced when judges write and speak candidly.”

Kopf Urges Judges to Blog, Tweet

By Tony Mauro |

A month after U.S. District Judge Richard Kopf of Nebraska abruptly shut down his controversial Hercules and the umpire blog, he still believes federal judges and even Supreme Court justices would do "far more good than harm" if they publicly blogged and tweeted.

TV ad for Cymbalta:

Cymbalta-Maker Wins Bellwether Trial

By Amanda Bronstad |

Eli Lilly & Co. has won the first bellwether trial over withdrawal symptoms of antidepressant Cymbalta, which plaintiffs said include so-called “brain zaps.”

Magistrate Joe Spero

Magistrate Upholds LSAT Disability Accommodation Plan

By Karen Sloan |

A federal magistrate judge has largely upheld a set of procedures intended to make it easier for people who take the Law School Admission Test to receive disability accommodations.

<b>NO COOKS:</b> Chef and restaurateur  José Andrés was set to open a restaurant at a Donald Trump hotel project in downtown Washington. Andrés backed out, citing Trump's immigration comments.

Trump Sues Two Celebrity Chefs Who Abandoned Restaurant Plans

By Happy Carlock and Zoe Tillman |

Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump has filed a second lawsuit in Washington that accuses a celebrity chef of breaking a contract to open a restaurant in the new Trump hotel in downtown Washington.

Cellphone Ruling a Boost to Privacy Rights

By Marcia Coyle |

A federal appellate court last week widened a split among circuits on a major privacy question that's pending before the U.S. Supreme Court: Fourth Amendment protection for cellphone location information.

Boston-area police officers in 2014.

ACLU Sues Boston Police Over Civilian-Encounter Records

By Sheri Qualters |

The American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts and the ACLU’s national organization have sued the Boston Police Department to demand records about encounters with civilians since 2010 as part of probe about race and law enforcement.

Tom Goldstein.

Hourly Rates for Top Supreme Court Advocates Revealed in Fee Filing

By Tony Mauro |

Recent filings in an attorney fee request in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit lift the veil on the four-figure hourly rates charged by top advocates before the U.S. Supreme Court. Thomas Goldstein of Washington's Goldstein & Russell is seeking nearly $306,000 in fees for winning a key Fourth Amendment case. The amount is based in part on Goldstein's $1,100 hourly fee, plus $750 for partner Kevin Russell and $600 for partner Tejinder Singh.

Republican presidential candidates from left, Chris Christie, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Scott Walker, Donald Trump, Jeb Bush, Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, and John Kasich take the stage for the first Republican presidential debate at the Quicken Loans Arena Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Supreme Court Only a Side Dish at First GOP Debate

By Katelyn Polantz |

As the first Republican presidential debate led the 10 candidates onstage in Ohio through controversies such as a nuclear deal with Iran and derision for the Affordable Care Act, the questions and answers rarely hit upon the courts system. “It's time that we recognize the Supreme Court is not the supreme being," former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said at one point. New Jersey Gov. Christie and Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky sparred over the bulk collection of Americans' phone records.

Reversal Over Data-Breach Harm Has Neiman Marcus Crying Foul

By Amanda Bronstad |

The plaintiffs bar is heralding a federal appeals court ruling that could make it easier for victims of data breaches to sue, but defense lawyers aren’t convinced there’s a sea change in the law.

Arizona Summit Law School Moves to Toss Ex-Employee’s Suit

By Karen Sloan |

Arizona Summit Law School wants a judge to throw out a lawsuit brought by a former assistant director of financial aid who claims retaliation and discrimination against the for-profit institution.

(Clockwise, from top) Beth Wilkinson, Huma Abedin, David Kendall, Cheryl Mills, and Karen Dunn.

Clinton Email Saga Means Work for Big Law

By Zoe Tillman |

As the U.S. State Department grapples with dozens of lawsuits seeking emails from Hillary Clinton's private server and other records about her time as secretary of State, Clinton and former aides have separately lawyered up.

The U.S. Supreme Court

Study: Public Largely Unaware of High Court's Limits on Enforcing Rights

By Marcia Coyle |

The U.S. Supreme Court has made it more difficult for consumers and others to enforce their rights because of a series of technical, ideological decisions of which the public is largely unaware, according to a recent scholarly study.

Fourth Amendment Protects Cellphone Location Data, Appeals Court Says

By Marcia Coyle |

A federal appellate court on Wednesday widened a split among circuits on a major privacy question that's pending before the U.S. Supreme Court: Fourth Amendment protection for cellphone location information.

The names of black potential jurors in the murder trial of Timothy Foster were circled in green on this Floyd County, Georgia document cited in Foster's pending Supreme Court case claiming race discrimination in jury selection.

Former Prosecutors Side with Defendant in Jury Selection Bias Case

By Tony Mauro |

An array of well-known former prosecutors has joined forces to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to reaffirm its commitment to banning racial bias in jury selection.

Jesse Benton, campaign manager for Republican presidential candidate, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, arrives at a campaign event honoring veterans at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa, Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2011.

Former Ron Paul Campaign Officials Charged in Bribery Scheme

By Zoe Tillman |

Three members of Ron Paul's failed presidential bid in 2012, including a former campaign manager for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, have been charged in connection with a scheme to bribe a former Iowa state senator to support Paul's candidacy.

Ray Charles at Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier of the Place des Arts during the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal in 2003.

Testing New Law, Ray Charles Foundation's Suit Revived

By Amanda Bronstad |

A federal appeals court has revived a lawsuit brought by The Ray Charles Foundation against the musician’s children who sought to terminate copyrights to 51 of his songs. The case, brought in 2012, is among the first to test a provision of the Copyright Act that allows an artist, or his or her surviving family members, to terminate copyrights 35 years after they were granted.

Chef Jose Andres abandoned his plan for a restaurant at the site of the Trump International Hotel development at the Old Post Office in downtown Washington.

Meet the Seyfarth Lawyer in Trump's Restaurant Suits

By Happy Carlock |

Rebecca Woods, the Seyfarth Shaw partner in Washington who's suing celebrity chefs José Andrés and Geoffrey Zakarian on behalf of a Donald Trump hotel development, is a veteran commercial litigator who's accustomed to multimillion-dollar court fights.

<b>NO COOKS:</b> Chef and restaurateur  José Andrés was set to open a restaurant at a Donald Trump hotel project in downtown Washington. Andrés backed out, citing Trump's immigration comments.

Trump Sues Two Celebrity Chefs Who Abandoned Restaurant Plans

By Zoe Tillman |

Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump has filed a second lawsuit in Washington that accuses a celebrity chef of breaking a contract to open a restaurant in the new Trump hotel in downtown Washington. The complaint against Geoffrey Zakarian comes days after Trump sued chef and restaurateur José Andrés over his decision to pull out of Trump's hotel project. Zakarian, like Andrés, scrapped plans for a restaurant in the hotel in response to Trump's controversial remarks about immigration.

Judge Patti Saris

Sentencing Reform Cut Crack-Cocaine Sentencing in Half

By Marcia Coyle |

During 2014 approximately half as many crack-cocaine offenders were sentenced in the federal system as in 2010 as the result of a federal sentencing law, according to the U.S. Sentencing Commission.

Anton Valukas, chairman of Jenner & Block, during a hearing before the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, & Urban Affairs to discuss securities, insurance, and investment. April 6, 2011.

Deposition Battle Heats Up Over GM’s Valukas Report

By Amanda Bronstad |

General Motors Co. and plaintiffs lawyers are fighting over the scope of the upcoming deposition of the lawyer whose report on the company’s ignition-switch defect blamed a handful of employees for the fiasco.

John Paul Stevens.

Retired Justice Stevens Praises Roberts, Jabs Scalia

By Tony Mauro |

Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens last week praised Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. for his temperate opinions, while implicitly criticizing Justice Antonin Scalia for using "disrespectful rhetoric" in a key ruling last term.

This June 2015 booking photo released by the Dublin, Calif., Police Department, shows Matthew Muller after he was arrested on robbery and assault charges. On Monday, July 13, 2015, Muller was named as a suspect in the kidnapping and sexual assault of a woman from Vallejo in March of 2015 that police originally believed was a hoax.

Harvard Educated, Now Incarcerated

By Amanda Bronstad |

Suspected in a bizarre kidnapping case, a bright young lawyer took a dark turn.

<b>NO. 1:</b> Covington & Burling, which moved in December to a new office in downtown Washington, grew its head count by 3% to 454 lawyers. Several former DOJ attorneys have returned to the firm.

Mergers Shake Up List of Largest D.C. Law Offices

By Katelyn Polantz |

Covington & Burling, at the top of The National Law Journal's list of Wash­ington's largest firms for the second consecutive year, added about 15 total lawyers last year in a time when elite firms, especially ones that focus on litigation, find the most ability to expand in Washington.

Verdicts & Settlements

A summary of this week's notable cases.

U.S. Department of Justice building in Washington, D.C. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Ex-Prosecutor Loses Fight Against Reporter Over Leak Source

By Happy Carlock |

A federal appeals court on Friday sided with a former Detroit Free Press reporter who refused to testify about his source or sources for an article about a federal prosecutor who faced an ethics investigation. A three-judge panel for the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit upheld David Ashenfelter's Fifth Amendment privilege not to reveal the source of information in the article for fear of potential prosecution.

Catherine Carroll. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

When the High Court Wants Help

By Tony Mauro |

The U.S. Supreme Court has appointed D.C. appellate expert Catherine Carroll to argue in favor of a position that the Obama administration has disavowed in a civil rights case the justices will hear in the fall. The court's action, while unusual, puts Carroll in the company of a select group of lawyers, most of them former law clerks, who get a prized opportunity to argue at the high court by appointment rather than through a client.

Cert Petition: Justice Dept. Takes Insider-Trading Case to High Court

The U.S. Department of Justice on Thursday filed a cert petition in United States v. Newman that asks the high court to reverse a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit that restrains the ability of the government to bring insider-trading cases.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaks at an event sponsored by Duke University in Washington, DC, on July 29, 2015. Photo: Jay Mallin

Ginsburg Reflects on Gay Marriage, Death Penalty Rulings

By Tony Mauro |

"In this case, it was more powerful to have a single opinion" favoring same-sex marriage, while all four dissenters wrote separately, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Wednesday evening before an audience of Duke University students and alumni.