California Pulse

  • Calif. Judge Decries DOJ's Broken Promises In Travel Ban Suit

    A California federal judge reprimanded U.S. Department of Justice attorneys for causing delays, breaking promises and hobbling the administration of justice while granting class certification to individuals who sought waivers to former President Donald Trump's travel ban targeting mostly Muslim-majority countries.

  • Eastman Should Be Disbarred, Calif. State Bar Judge Rules

    A State Bar Court of California judge on Wednesday recommended disbarring Donald Trump's onetime attorney John Eastman, who helped plan and promote the former president's strategy to overturn the 2020 presidential election.

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    How GCs Can Leverage AI And Mitigate Risks

    Experts at a cybersecurity summit for in-house counsel this week agreed that the best governance strategies for using artificial intelligence should balance the company's business and ethical culture with its tolerance for risk.

  • Calif. Rail Biz Attys Face DQ Bid Over Bad Faith, Info Breach

    A Black engineer accusing Pacific Harbor Line of workplace racial bias has urged a California federal judge to bar Buchannan Ingersoll & Rooney LLP from representing the railroad company, citing a sanctions bid against his counsel that had "no evidentiary basis" and "improper" communication with a paralegal for the engineer's legal team.

  • 3 Firms Vie To Lead Instacart Pre-IPO Action

    Levi & Korsinsky LLP, Pomerantz LLP and The Rosen Law Firm PA have each asked a California federal judge to lead a securities lawsuit against grocery delivery company Instacart for allegedly misrepresenting its growth potential in the lead-up to its initial public offering.

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    BigLaw Is Greater Part Of Litigation Funding Industry 'In Flux'

    The litigation funding industry is entering an era of "consolidation" and "shakeout" after years of rapid growth, exemplified by the fact that BigLaw firms made up a bigger slice of the industry's customer base than ever last year, even as the total value of new deals fell, according to a new report.

  • Misconduct In 'Fat Leonard' Case Sinks 3 More Guilty Pleas

    Alleged prosecutorial misconduct has set up three more defendants charged in relation to the U.S. Navy's "Fat Leonard" scandal to yank their original guilty pleas so they can plead guilty to much less serious charges.

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    Mitchell Silberberg Names DEI, Talent Development Director

    Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP announced Tuesday that it has appointed an experienced civil rights attorney and diversity, equity and inclusion consultant as the firm's first director of DEI and talent development.

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    Lateral Hiring Plummets As Post-COVID Talent Wars Cease

    Lateral lawyer hiring plummeted 35% overall in 2023 — marking the second consecutive annual decline and the softest market in 13 years, according to a report released Wednesday by the National Association for Law Placement.

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    Willenken Names New Managing Partner

    Los Angeles trial boutique Willenken LLP announced Tuesday that it has tapped a new managing partner, litigator Kenneth Trujillo-Jamison, to lead the firm beginning January 2025.

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    By The Numbers: Diversity Of California Attorneys Grows

    Female and minority attorneys have made big gains in California over the past few decades, but white attorneys still make up nearly two-thirds of all lawyers in the highly diverse Golden State, according to a new report by the State Bar of California.

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    How Senior Associates Can Build Their Books Of Business

    As associates grow into their positions, there can come a point at which they realize that mastering the art of the legal brief or the deposition is not enough: They also need to learn how to attract and retain clients.

  • Indicted Exec Wants Suit Tossed For Prosecutors' Misconduct

    A former healthcare CEO indicted on novel insider trading charges is trying once again to have the case tossed from California federal court, this time accusing prosecutors of improperly contacting a represented party in a separate but related civil case, weeks after a previous attempt to duck the charges failed.

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    Meet The Calif. Atty Taking On Health Insurers' Use Of AI

    With the health insurance industry under scrutiny over its use of algorithms and artificial intelligence in the patient coverage review process, California appellate attorney Glenn Danas saw an opening for litigation with what he calls a "high outrage factor."

  • Girardi Fraud Trial Moved To Aug. 6

    A California federal judge has agreed to postpone disgraced California plaintiffs attorney Tom Girardi's trial to Aug. 6, setting the proceedings to begin 16 months later than originally required at the outset of the case.

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    Calif. Atty Tapped To Be RFK Jr.'s Running Mate

    Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. announced Tuesday that a Silicon Valley lawyer will be his running mate as the pair make a longshot bid for the White House this year.

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    K&L Gates Consumer Products Chair Joins Venable In LA

    Venable LLP said Monday that the co-chair of K&L Gates LLP's commercial litigation practice and chair of its consumer products and beauty and wellness practice groups has joined the firm's Los Angeles office as a partner.

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    Google, Everlaw Vet Joins Zendesk As Chief Legal Officer

    Customer service software company Zendesk has welcomed as its new chief legal officer an attorney who was in-house counsel at Google for nearly nine years, formerly worked at cloud-based e-discovery platform Everlaw and spent time as an associate at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP earlier in her career.

  • Ex-CLO Must Arbitrate Firing Suit Against Gambling Co. GAN

    Online gaming and sports betting company GAN Ltd. has won its bid in California federal court to force its former chief legal officer into arbitration over claims in his wrongful firing complaint alleging his termination was motivated in part by his whistleblowing and objections to a hostile work environment.

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    Approach The Bench: Justice Stewart Blasts Partisan Races

    Ohio Supreme Court Justice Melody Stewart has some choice words for a colleague who chose to challenge her reelection bid rather than run for the seat he occupies now.

  • OneNotary Partners With DocuSign, Secures $5M Investment

    An online notarization startup secured a $5 million Series A investment and introduced a partnership with DocuSign on Tuesday.

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    Womble Bond Taps Houston Leader For Firm's Global Board

    Womble Bond Dickinson has appointed Jeff Whittle, managing partner of the firm's Houston office, to a two-year term on the firm's global board, which is responsible for ensuring that the firm's U.S. and U.K. operations work smoothly together.

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    Backstabbing 'Just How Law Firms Work': Sedgwick Judge

    A California federal judge told counsel during bench trial openings Monday that the Sedgwick LLP trustee's bid to claw back $1.1 million from two ex-partners isn't a "blame game," and "partners stab each other in the back every day and move on to the next one" — "it's just how law firms work."

  • Sunday Ticket Plaintiffs Rip NFL For 'Privileged' Name Games

    The plaintiffs in the antitrust class action against the NFL over its Sunday Ticket broadcast package have accused the league of hiding behind a front-office executive, with an inaccurate job title, to claim that vital documents were privileged and did not need to be disclosed.

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    Calif. Boutique Boss Went From Public Housing To High Court

    After growing up in public housing, Gary Lafayette, the founder of the California-based boutique Lafayette & Kumagai LLP, went on to argue a public housing-related case before the U.S. Supreme Court. In a recent interview with Law360 Pulse as his firm merges with Sanders Roberts LLP, Lafayette shared lessons from his career so far.

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Expert Analysis

  • Future Lawyers Expect DEI Commitments Beyond Recruiting Author Photo

    To attract future lawyers from diverse backgrounds, firms must think beyond recruiting efforts, because law students are looking for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives that invest in employee professional development and engage with students year-round, says Lauren Jackson at Howard University School of Law.

  • Series

    Ask A Mentor: How Can Law Students Build Real-World Skills? Author Photo

    Allison Coffin at Akin Gump discusses how summer associates going back to school can continue to develop real-world lawyering skills by leveraging the numerous law school resources that support professional development both inside and outside the classroom.

  • How Firm Leaders Can Build And Sustain Culture Author Photo

    In uncertain and challenging times, law firm leaders can build and sustain culture by focusing attention on mission, values and leadership development, and applying a growth mindset across their firms, says Scott Westfahl at Harvard Law.

  • The Case That Showed Me The Value Of E-Discovery Plans Author Photo

    Robert Keeling at Sidley reflects on leading discovery in the litigation that followed the historic $85 billion AT&T-Time Warner merger and how the case highlighted the importance of having a strategic e-discovery plan in place.

  • Opinion

    CLE Accreditation Should Be Tied To Learning Outcomes Author Photo

    Given the substantial time and money lawyers put toward mandatory continuing legal education, CLE regulators and providers should be held to accreditation standards that assess learning outcomes, similar to those imposed on law schools and continuing medical education providers, says Rima Sirota at Georgetown Law.

  • Why You Should Leverage AI For Privilege Review Author Photo

    While many lawyers still believe that a manual, document-by-document review is the best approach to privilege logging, certain artificial intelligence tools can bolster the traditional review process and make this aspect of electronic document review more efficient, more accurate and less costly, say Laura Riff and Michelle Six at Kirkland.

  • Persuading The Court With Visual Aids In Written Argument Author Photo

    Robert Dubose at Alexander Dubose describes several categories of visuals attorneys can use to make written arguments easier to understand or more persuasive, and provides tips for lawyers unused to working with anything but text.

  • 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.

  • Series

    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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