Expert Columns

High-Tech GCs Reimagine Their Roles

By Sue Reisinger |

They apply their industry’s values to legal work.

Happiness Eludes Big Firm Lawyers

By Vivia Chen |

Study finds that lawyers in lucrative, prestigious positions are miserable.

United States Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito Jr.

INADMISSIBLE: Alito's Son Leaves Gibson For U.S. Senate

Philip Alito, the son of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito Jr., has a new job that is drawing criticism as a potential liability for the court itself. Plus more in this week's column.

Attorney Osvaldo Miranda Diaz provides an overview of the Cuban legal system describing the role of lawyers in Cuba and the legal services provided at his firm, Cuban Law Collective.

IN BRIEF: U.S. Lawyers in Cuba

The Cuban bar has no compunctions in voicing its displeasure with that country's legal system to government officials. Yet, Havana attorney Osvaldo Miranda Diaz said they are "getting tired of complaining." Plus more from and other ALM publications.

Is a 5-4 Ruling Really Enough to Undo Laws?

By Aaron S. Bayer |

Amid an increase in the invalidation of statutes, some call for high court to follow states' leads.

Paige Bass, general counsel of SONIC.

In-House Counsel Profile: Sonic Corp.'s Paige Bass

By June D. Bell |

"When I was in private practice I did litigation, and we'd get bogged down in discovery dispute. But in-house, I'm on the front line of helping business get done."


New arrivals and lateral moves in this week's column.

Robert Plant (left) and Jimmy Page (right) of Led Zeppelin, in concert in Chicago, Illinois.  1977.

VOIR DIRE: Whole Lotta Self-Love

The surviving members of Led Zeppelin would like it known how much they rock. Also, they didn't steal from another band's song to create their most enduring hit. Plus more in this week's column.

Tread With Caution When Representing Marijuana Clients

By Courtney G. Saleski and Mark A. Kasten |

As state laws permitting the use and distribution of marijuana—medical or recreational—are enacted, many entrepreneurs see an opportunity to be part of this "budding" industry. But because marijuana distribution, even intrastate, remains categorically illegal under federal law, federal authorities may seek to prosecute marijuana distributors, those who aid such distribution and those who launder the proceeds from that distribution, among others.

Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

VOIR DIRE: A Song for Soldiers

Attorney George Kieffer is well-known for his civic involvement: A member of the University of California Board of Regents, he also helped write the city charter of Los Angeles. But he's also a lifelong musician. Plus more in this week's column.

Rising to the Top Of the Maybe Pile

By Adrian Dayton |

We all want more business, not more maybes. But if you really want more business, you need to be on the radar of many more people than just those who will end up hiring you.

<b>WEIGHTY ISSUE:</b> Ruling involving the dietary supplement has created uncertainty for lawyers.

Third Circuit Creates Turmoil Over Certification

By Arthur H. Bryant |

Appeals court won't rehear case that changes long-standing inquiry regarding class definition.

Yelp general counsel Lawrence Wilson

In-House Counsel Profile: Yelp Inc.'s Laurence Wilson

By Richard Acello |

Wilson gave up early ambitions for a biotechnology career. "I didn't enjoy being in a lab; it was kind of lonely and repetitive," he said.


New arrivals and laterals in this week's column.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Ben Affleck, wearing Batman's traditional black and gray, in the film <i>Batman v Superman:  Dawn of Justice.</i>

VOIR DIRE: The Fluorescent Knight

A man shows up for a meeting with his attorney in a "fluorescent green Batman" outfit, and the attorney suspects "drink had been taken." Plus: noodle wars and Fitbit fights in this week's column.

Atlanta skyline.

IN BRIEF: City Held in Contempt

A federal judge has held the city of Atlanta in contempt and imposed sanctions for its failure to meet the terms of a settlement with a woman arrested by police while she filmed them arresting her neighbor. Plus more from and other ALM publications.

Rick Chung, general counsel of Bowlmor AMF Corp.

In-House Counsel Profile: Bowlmor AMF Corp.'s Rick Chung

By June D. Bell |

"I know the processes that need to be put in place to create a foundation for adequate growth."

<b>TAKE NOTE:</b> Leslie Caldwell, assistant attorney general in charge of the DOJ’s Criminal Division, recently discussed internal corporate investigations.

Valuable Insight from DOJ's Criminal Division

By George J. Terwilliger III |

Assistant attorney general reveals details that corporations should know about investigations.

U.S. District Court judge Amy Berman Jackson.

INADMISSIBLE: Justice Dept. Loses Laptop Search Dispute

Federal agents do not have unlimited power to search laptops and other electronic devices without a warrant at the border, including airports, a federal judge in Washington has ruled. Plus more in this week's column.

What Do Men Want, Anyway?

By Vivia Chen |

Few men want housewives these days.

DOJ’s Cybersecurity Do’s and Don’ts

By Rebekah Mintzer |

The department offers a best-practices guide.

Josh Faddis, general counsel of Veeva Inc.

In-House Counsel Profile: Veeva Systems Inc.'s Josh Faddis

By Richard Acello |

"I hire based on the team, not so much the firm."

VOIR DIRE: Know Your Craft

A beer aficionado says Blue Moon isn't really "craft beer," and an attempted exorcism at King & Spalding in this week's column.

Delaware Gov. Jack Markell has signed a new arbitration law.

Big Changes To Delaware's Arbitration Laws

By William Savitt |

Newly enacted legislation speeds up the resolution process. More controversial revisions could be next.

A Chuck Close painting hangs in Paris museum.

IN BRIEF: Art Royalties Law Trimmed

An en banc federal appellate panel has struck down part of a California law requiring sellers of fine art to pay royalties to the artists. Plus more from and other ALM publications.

Rapper Snoop Dogg, right, and Texas state trooper Billy Spears, left, in Austin in March.

VOIR DIRE: Deputy Dogged

Texas state trooper Billy Spears was disciplined in early April for allowing himself to be photographed in uniform with rapper Snoop Dogg at the South by Southwest music festival in Austin. Now he's firing back. Plus more in this week's column.

Vice President Joe Biden, left, administers the oath while Attorney General Loretta Lynch placed her hand on a bible held by her father, Rev. Lorenzo Lynch, second from left, and husband Stephen Hargrove, second from right, at the U.S. Department of Justice.  April 27, 2015.

INADMISSIBLE: Loretta Lynch Vows 'Even Greater Heights'

In her remarks, Lynch said her role was to "not just represent the law and enforce the law, but to use it to make real the promise of America: the promise of fairness, the promise of equality, of liberty and justice for all." Plus more in this week's column.

Jennifer Borg, general counsel and vice president of North Jersey Media Group.

In-House Counsel Profile: North Jersey Media Group Inc.'s Jennifer Borg

By Richard Acello |

North Jersey Media Group Inc. publishes The Record, which the company says reaches nearly half a million readers a day in Northern New Jersey, plus a second daily publication and 49 community newspapers.

Your Best Precedent Is Unpublished — Now What?

By Cameron W. Gilbert |

There may be ways around local rules against citing to such rulings, but proceed with caution.


Lateral moves and new arrivals in this week's column.

EEOC Offers Advice About Wellness Plans

By Rebekah Mintzer |

Preliminary regulations provide some definitions.

Women Don't Gain By Networking

By Vivia Chen |

Business school study puts a damper on female bonding.

Judge Janice Rogers Brown

INADMISSIBLE: Word of Advice From D.C. Circuit Judge

"I do not wish to have an encounter with the police right now. Am I free to leave?" That's advice from Judge Janice Rogers Brown about what to say to police on patrol in Washington for illegal guns. Plus more in this week's column.

Barry Bonds

IN BRIEF: Barry Bonds Wins Appeal

Former San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds is out from under the threat of criminal penalties for his evasive responses before the grand jury in a steroids investigation. Plus more from and other ALM publications.

<b>PROTEST:</b> A demonstration following Michael Brown’s death at the old courthouse building in St. Louis.

The Lawyer Ethics Lesson from Ferguson

By Michael Downey |

Did attorneys cross a line by benefiting from a justice system that harmed the unrepresented?


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

John Nichols, director & general counsel of Creative Services Inc.

In-House Counsel Profile: Creative Services Inc.'s John Nichols

By Richard Acello |

Creative Services Inc. specializes in pre-employment screening, background investigations and security consulting. General counsel John Nichols is the sole attorney at the company.

Sam Waterston as Jack McCoy in the television series

VOIR DIRE: The Real McCoy

They don't play one on TV, but according to a recent survey lawyers really identify with Jack McCoy, the unconventional district attorney on "Law & Order." Plus more in this week's column.

Lessons from the Defanging in 'Dental Examiners'

By Janet McDavid and Logan Breed |

Supreme Court's ruling in teeth-whitening case puts limits on professional boards' sovereign immunity.

In-House Counsel Profile: Mohawk Industries Inc.'s David Patton

By June D. Bell |

"We try to run the business very efficiently and very lean."

VOIR DIRE: Free the Snowden Bust!

A bust of Edward Snowden that was erected overnight in a Brooklyn park is now the property of the 88th Precinct. Attorney Ron Kuby is attempting to help the artists bust out their bust. Plus more in this week's column.


New arrivals and lateral moves in this week's column.

The $11M Lesson in Telephone Consumer Protection Compliance

By Rebekah Mintzer |

Want to let your customers know with a phone call or text that the items they need are ready for pickup? Think twice before you dial.

The Relevance of Howard University School of Law

By Vivia Chen |

One-fifth of its law school grads go into Big Law, despite its No. 110 rank.

White-Collar Defendants Turn to Coercion Claims

By Laurie L. Levenson |

Ninth Circuit decision improves odds for individuals who say they were forced to commit crimes.

Orin Kerr, left, and John Roberts Jr., right.

INADMISSIBLE: A Response to Roberts' Law-Review Gripe

Chief Justice John Roberts Jr.'s offhand 2011 criticism of law review articles has stung legal academics ever since. Nearly four years later, his comment has finally met its match in the form of … a law review article. Plus more in this week's column.

Jennifer Lawrence in <i>American Hustle</i>.

VOIR DIRE: 'Hustle' Tussle

Science writer Paul Brodeur says America's been hustled by "American Hustle." Plus, an energy drink suit gets sapped and a joyride with an owl gets a Florida man caught in federal talons in this week's column.

Hugh Welsh, general counsel and president of DSM North America.

In-House Counsel Profile: DSM North America's Hugh Welsh

DSM North America is a division of Koninklijke DSM N.V., a Dutch firm that North America president and general counsel Hugh Welsh calls "the biggest company you’ve never heard of."


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

VOIR DIRE: No Anchovies, Please

They may be an acquired taste, but anchovies are integral ingredients in the making of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce. A New Jersey industrial landlord is claiming it found that out the hard way.

How to Handle the Deposition 'Do-Over'

By Robert L. Byman |

Procedural rules permit witnesses to submit changes to transcripts — but proceed with caution.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Springsteen farms

VOIR DIRE: Promised Land?

Famous New Jersey residents like Bruce Springsteen may have their tax breaks cropped. Plus more in this week's column.

Matthew Jacobs, General Counsel of CalPERS.  HANDOUT.

In-House Counsel Profile: California Public Employees’ Retirement System's Matthew Jacobs

By June D. Bell |

General counsel Matthew Jacobs oversees 32 attorneys split into three groups: the advice team, which handles tax matters and helps interpret pension law; the investments group; and the litigation group.

Federal Circuit Must Heed Trial Court Findings

By Lewis R. Clayton |

U.S. Supreme Court has determined that some patent law appeals aren't so special after all.

<b>NOT INCLUDED IN THE SALE:</b> The Brooklyn Bridge

VOIR DIRE: The Italian Job, Redux

It's the 21st century, and selling the Brooklyn Bridge is for amateurs. Plus more in this week's column.

Take Some Pride In Your Profession

By Adrian Dayton |

I hope that all lawyers can not only be proud of what they do, but have confidence that their knowledge can benefit their community both online and off.

art for Practice column

When Client Advocacy Becomes Personal Attack

By Douglas S. Lavine |

Portrayal of sniping, cut-throat trial lawyers in popular culture is influencing attorney conduct.


Lateral moves and new arrivals in this week's column.

Marc Bell, vice president, general counsel and secretary of Vector Group Ltd.

In-House Counsel Profile: Vector Group Ltd.'s Marc Bell

By Lisa Hoffman |

General counsel Marc Bell oversees corporate affairs and risk management at the holding-company level, and manages litigation for each of Vector's subsidiaries.

Tom Daschle

INADMISSIBLE: Daschle Registers As A Lobbyist At Last

Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle registered with the federal government as a lobbyist for the first time in his career last week. Plus more in this week's column.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Paul Ryan.

INADMISSIBLE: Paul Ryan, Chief of Staff Sued Over Crash

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, and his chief of staff, Kevin Seifert, face a $100,000 lawsuit over a car crash Seifert was involved in while driving Ryan's car last year. Plus more in this week's column.

Ripple Effects from the High Court's Fishing Case

By Dan Webb and Robb Adkins |

The justices' narrow reading of a Sarbanes-Oxley provision could doom future obstruction charges.

William Reilly Jr., senior vice president and corporate general counsel of Ansell Ltd.

In-House Counsel Profile: Ansell Healthcare Products LLC's William Reilly Jr.

By Richard Acello |

"There are lots of alternative creative ways to bill, and the hourly fee is slowly but surely dying."

VOIR DIRE: Informing on Idlers

New York City has a pretty tough law on the books aimed at drivers who idle too long in one spot, with fines of up to $220. City Council member Donovan Richards Jr. says the law isn't being enforced, and he has a better idea. Plus more in this week's column.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Delicate Lawyering Needed for Special-Needs Kids

By Mary Kay Kisthardt and Barbara Handschu |

More children than ever are diagnosed with medical and psychiatric difficulties. Attorneys must be ready.

INADMISSIBLE: Petraeus Pleads to Secrecy Violation

David Petraeus, the former CIA director who resigned in 2012 amid a sex scandal, will plead guilty to mishandling classified information. Prosecutors have agreed not to seek any jail time. Plus more in this week's column.

Five Reasons To Share Online

By Adrian Dayton |

When it comes to sharing articles on LinkedIn, Twitter and even by email, we need to embrace our inner toy-sharing toddler.

Jae Kim, senior vice president and general counsel of Rambus.

In-House Counsel Profile: Rambus Inc.'s Jae Kim

By Richard Acello |

"I'm hands-off to the extent I can be, but I will roll up my sleeves and get involved in things where appropriate."

Notorious RBG

VOIR DIRE: A Lunch Supreme

When lunching with a U.S. Supreme Court justice, it appears most lawyers want to go the Notorious route. Plus more in this week's column.

Avi Epstein, general counsel, chief compliance officer and principal at Sterling Partners.

In-House Counsel Profile: Sterling Partners LLC's Avi Epstein

By Richard Acello |

"We own 30 companies and we make all critical decisions. So rather than build a team of 10 lawyers, we find an expert for every type of legal need."

Loretta Lynch during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee to replace Eric Holder Jr. as the next U.S. Attorney General.  January 28, 2015.

INADMISSIBLE: Lynch Nomination Moves to Full Senate

Loretta Lynch's nomination for U.S. attorney general moved forward last week on Capitol Hill, where the full Senate is expected to take up a vote soon. Plus more in this week's column.

<b>JUSTICE STEPHEN BREYER:</b> The U.S. Supreme Court justice wrote the dissenting opinion in <i>AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion</i>, a decision that upheld a class action waiver in consumer contracts.

Despite 'Concepcion,' Class Actions Live On

By Catherine L. Fisk |

The high court upheld a waiver of such suits, but a distinction emerges when public rights are at issue.


New arrivals and lateral moves in this week's column.

VOIR DIRE: Fifty Shades of Pay

Somebody's inner goddess is celebrating: Jenny Pedroza won a legal victory that may entitle her to a cut of the profits from the "Fifty Shades of Grey" book series. Plus more in this week's column.

Practice 0223

How Fair Are Appellate Panel Selections?

By Aaron S. Bayer |

Same-sex marriage challenge highlights array of factors courts take into account when assigning cases.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Psy doll

VOIR DIRE: No Psy-milarity

A doll cramps Psy's style, plus Texan civility and no more Hugo Caliente in this week's column.

Stephen Immelt.

INADMISSIBLE: Hogan Lovells' Gross Revenue Increases

Hogan Lovells reported an increase of 3.6 percent in its gross revenue for 2014, to $1.78 billion compared with 2013's $1.72 billion. Plus more in this week's column.

Maureen Mulholland of Monro Mufflers.

In-House Counsel Profile: Monro Muffler Brake Inc.'s Maureen Mulholland

By Richard Acello |

"We are constantly in hiring mode and always looking for talent."

From left to right: Dawn Goodfriend (older daughter), Sarah Goodfriend, Suzanne Bryant, Travis County clerk Dana DeBeauvoir and Ting Goodfriend (younger daughter)

IN BRIEF: Same-Sex Marriage in Texas

A lesbian couple was married on Feb. 19 in Travis County, Texas, in the first same-sex ceremony performed in that state. Plus more from and other ALM publications.

Five Key Cybercrime and Cybersecurity Issues To Consider

By Mark L. Krotoski |

There are many facets to cybersecurity. This article highlights five key issues for consideration.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

New Tools for Companies Against Cybercrime

By Nick Akerman |

Obama administration proposal would reduce legal ambiguities and allow civil RICO claims.

Janice Block, executive vice president, chief legal, compliance and administrative officer of Kaplan, Inc.

In-House Counsel Profile: Kaplan Inc.'s Janice Levy Block

By Lisa Holton |

"Any time you have the opportunity to work with and get to know your regulators, it's good for all of us."

Ten Quick Ways to Build Your Network

By Adrian Dayton |

There is an old saying: "If you aren't growing, you are dying." So keep growing your LinkedIn network. You won't like the alternative.

Snow-covered vehicles in the North End neighborhood of Boston this year.

IN BRIEF: Snowbound in Boston

Suffice it to say that the snow in Boston has lost its appeal. A three-week onslaught has hampered road and transit travel, forced court closures and tested law firms' ability to keep running. Plus more from and other ALM publications.

VOIR DIRE: A Tale of Two Terrios

Deney Terrio goes toe-to-toe with Hasbro over "Vinny Terrio." Plus: soured on Blackberry and the daily grind of the law in this week's column.

Loretta Lynch.

INADMISSIBLE: Loretta Lynch Vote Awaiting 'Clarification'

U.S. attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch will have to wait another two weeks for her Senate Judiciary Committee vote, Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said during a committee meeting on Feb. 12. Plus more in this week's column.

Katy Perry performs during the Pepsi Super Bowl XLIX Halftime show at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

VOIR DIRE: Fin-ished

Left Shark infringement claims, obnoxious neighbors, and Mike Jones raps for a lawyer's Super Bowl ad in this week's column.


Laterals and new arrivals in this week's column.

Jonathan Drucker, general counsel of Godiva Chocolatier, Inc.

In-House Counsel Profile: Godiva Chocolatier Inc.'s Jon Drucker

By June D. Bell |

Drucker serves on the 14-member global leadership team, examines potential franchise opportunities and reviews marketing agreements, endorsements and public relations contracts. Oh, and he helps out at Godiva stores on Valentine's Day — the busiest day of the year.

Chief Justice John Roberts

Cy Pres Awards Don't Have to Be Complicated

By Arthur H. Bryant |

Critics say damages awarded to third parties are unjust, but courts are clear on the issue.

Rosemary Collyer.

INADMISSIBLE: 'One Millionth Discovery Dispute' Resolved

U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer appears ready to wash her hands of fights over evidence in a wrongful-­termination case pending since 2010. Plus more in this week's column.

How to Stay Compliant Amid Overcriminalization

By George J. Terwilliger III |

Despite small steps to rein in investigations, companies must remain on high alert for problems.

biometric hand scan

VOIR DIRE: Devil to Pay?

Saying no to biometric hand scans on religious grounds; a brief respite for the Situation; and cold justice for fake Mister Softee trucks in this week's column.

Richard X. Fischer, EVP and general counsel of Clover Technologies Group.

In-House Counsel Profile: Clover Technologies Group LLC's Richard Fischer

By Lisa Holton |

General counsel Richard Fischer runs his department on what he calls the "working foreman" model.