California Pulse

  • NY Atty Gets 10 Years In Prison For Trying To Have Ex Killed

    A New York attorney convicted of arranging to pay a hitman to murder the mother of his two young children has been sentenced in California federal court to 10 years behind bars, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Friday.

  • Colo. Judge Moves Toward Eastman DQ Over Calif. Discipline

    A Colorado federal judge has ordered former Donald Trump lawyer John C. Eastman to explain why he shouldn't be disqualified from representing plaintiffs in a civil suit after a California disciplinary judge suspended his law license and recommended disbarment in March.

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    Alphabet, Google CLO Saw Comp Surpass $27M Last Year

    Kent Walker, a longtime Google lawyer who is now the legal chief at the technology behemoth and its parent company Alphabet, earned more than $27.3 million in compensation in 2023, according to a recent securities filing, as the business continues to grapple with antitrust cases at both the federal and state levels.

  • Smollett Atty Wants Sanctions Over Missing Therapy Records

    An attorney for Jussie Smollett has asked an Illinois federal judge for another round of sanctions after two brothers who allegedly helped stage a hate crime against the actor failed to turn over discovery, saying they've refused to turn over records or answer questions in the defamation suit pertaining to their mental health treatment.

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    Nextdoor Legal Chief Announces Plans To Resign

    The legal head of social network operator Nextdoor will be leaving the company next month, according to a recent securities filing.

  • Haynes Boone Relocates SF Office In 6th Firm Move Since Fall

    Haynes and Boone LLP announced Monday that it has moved its San Francisco office to a larger location in the heart of the city's Financial District.

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    DoorDash GC's Comp Falls, With $5M Drop In Stock Awards

    DoorDash Inc. general counsel Tia Sherringham received roughly $10 million in compensation in 2023, down significantly from the prior year due to a dip in stock awards, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

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    The Best Therapy For Lawyers, According To Ex-Lawyers

    Attorneys-turned-therapists say no one understands the stresses of being a lawyer like another lawyer. They also say their clients sometimes struggle at first with treatment that prioritizes feelings, mindfulness and even body awareness over the intellectualizing and rationalizing that make them successful at their jobs.

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    Security Startup Founder Joins Greenberg Traurig From MoFo

    Greenberg Traurig LLP has added a former Morrison & Foerster LLP technology litigator and data security software startup founder to its San Francisco office, the firm announced Monday.

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    How Dechert's Culture Helped Its SF Leader Forge Resilience

    When his 2-month-old daughter was hospitalized with a potentially fatal condition, Dechert partner Jonathan Stott leaned on firm mentors and colleagues for strength. Now, as managing partner of the firm's San Francisco office Stott is on a mission to pay it forward and continue fostering a supportive and resilient office community.

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    Atty Alcohol Misuse: What's Worked, What Hasn't, What's Next

    In the eight years since an ABA report revealed pervasive alcohol misuse among lawyers, the legal industry has sought to address the problem. Here is a look at what’s working, what isn’t, and how legal employers can effectively address law’s problem drinking crisis going forward.

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    Workload, Trauma, Isolation Impacting Judges' Mental Health

    Overwhelming caseloads, the secondary trauma from certain types of cases and a lack of peer support are the biggest stressors judges say they're facing, with many of them experiencing difficulty concentrating, remaining unbiased and treating litigants and lawyers with respect as a result.

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    V&E Appoints Ex-Littler CIO As Tech Leader

    Vinson & Elkins LLP announced on Monday the appointment of a chief technology and data officer with prior experience at Littler Mendelson PC, commercial real estate giant Colliers International and now-defunct Hitachi Consulting.

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    JAMS Brings On Pair Of Retired Judges In Northern Calif.

    The alternative dispute resolution service JAMS is expanding its mediation/arbitration team, announcing last week that it is adding two state judges as mediators in its San Francisco Bay Area offices — former superior court judges in Santa Clara County and in Alameda County.  

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    Most Gen Z Lawyers Would Take A Pay Cut For Fewer Hours

    Money is no longer the top factor in many Generation Z lawyers' list of priorities, with three-fourths naming culture as the No. 1 factor they used in choosing a law firm, according to a new report released Monday by recruiting firm Major Lindsey & Africa and legal intelligence provider Leopard Solutions.

  • Law360 Reveals Titans Of The Plaintiffs Bar

    In the past year, plaintiffs have won settlements and judgments for millions and billions of dollars from companies such as Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, Facebook and Fox News, with many high-profile cases finally wrapping up after years of fighting. Such cases — involving over-the-top compensation packages, chemical contamination, gender discrimination and data mining — were led by attorneys whose accomplishments earned them recognition as Law360's Titans of the Plaintiffs Bar for 2024.

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    How Legos, 'Working Girl' Sealed $10B Sibling Rivalry Win

    A father-son attorney team used Legos and an argument borrowed from the 1988 film "Working Girl" to help a Los Angeles jury understand how their client's own brother illegally stole his multibillion-dollar real estate business, leading to a $10 billion verdict for their client and his other brothers, the attorneys told Law360.

  • L'Occitane's Claim Zimmerman Reed Weaponized Law Tossed

    A California federal judge has thrown out L'Occitane's allegations that Zimmerman Reed LLP and thousands of clients conspired to "weaponize" a California wiretapping law against the luxury retailer, while chastising both sides' counsel in a footnote for their "overwrought, unjustified and misguided" arguments during litigation.

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    Ex-USPTO Solicitor Heads To Carmichael IP

    A veteran intellectual property attorney who once served as the chief legal officer at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has made the move to Carmichael IP PLLC.

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    TikTok GC To Step Down, Work On Overturning US Law

    The global general counsel for TikTok and parent company ByteDance will be stepping down from his role in June to take on a different job within the social media giant, the company announced Friday: fighting a new federal law requiring ByteDance to divest in TikTok or face a ban in the U.S.

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    Reed Smith Names Ex-MoFo Partner As Venture Capital Chair

    Reed Smith LLP has announced its hiring of a former Morrison Foerster LLP attorney with 20 years of corporate experience as a partner and chair of the firm's U.S. emerging growth and venture capital practice group.

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    Senators Urge ABA To Look Into Rape Questions On Bar Apps

    Several members of the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote to the American Bar Association on Friday urging it to study how state bar applications require would-be attorneys to disclose sexual violence.

  • Law360 Pulse Spotlight On Mid-Law Work

    Richards Layton & Finger PA and Desmarais LLP handling a suit against Pfizer over mRNA vaccine technology and Warner Norcross + Judd LLP's handling of a Midwestern bank merger lead this edition of Law360 Pulse's Spotlight On Mid-Law Work, recapping the top matters for Mid-Law firms from April 12 to 26.

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    Benesch Continues Growth With Another Former Kirkland Atty

    An experienced in-house attorney who previously worked in private practice at Kirkland & Ellis LLP has joined Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff LLP, continuing the firm's trend of hiring former Kirkland attorneys.

  • Coinbase CLO's Pay Package Dropped $2M Last Year

    The outspoken chief legal officer of cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc., who has railed against regulators, earned total compensation over $5 million last year, more than $2 million less than in 2022, according to the company's latest proxy statement.

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Expert Analysis

  • Modernizing Legal Education Through Hybrid JD Programs Author Photo

    Amid pandemic-era shifts in education, law schools and other stakeholders should consider the wide geographic and demographic reach of Juris Doctor programs with both online and in-person learning options, and educators should think through the various ways hybrid programs can be structured, says Stephen Burnett at All Campus.

  • How BigLaw Can Mirror Small Firm Attorney Engagement Author Photo

    BigLaw has the unique opportunity to hit refresh post-pandemic and enhance attorney satisfaction by adopting practices that smaller firms naturally employ — including work assignment policies that can provide junior attorneys steady professional development, says Michelle Genet Bernstein at Mark Migdal.

  • Ditch The Annual Review To Boost Attorney Job Satisfaction Author Photo

    In order to attract and retain the rising millennial generation's star talent, law firms should break free of the annual review system and train lawyers of all seniority levels to solicit and share frequent and informal feedback, says Betsy Miller at Cohen Milstein.

  • How Attorneys Can Narrow LGBTQ Gap In The Judiciary Author Photo

    Lawyers can take several steps to redress the lack of adequate LGBTQ representation on the bench and its devastating impact on litigants and counsel in the community, says Janice Grubin, co-chair of the Judiciary Committee at the LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York.

  • Employers Must Heed Rising Attorney Stress And Alcohol Use Author Photo

    Krill Strategies’ Patrick Krill, who co-authored a new study that revealed alarming levels of stress, hazardous drinking and associated gender disparities among practicing attorneys, highlights how legal employers can confront the underlying risk factors as both warnings and opportunities in the post-COVID-19 era.

  • Lawyers Can Get Ready For Space Law To Take Flight Author Photo

    While international agreements for space law have remained relatively unchanged since their creation decades ago, the rapid pace of change in U.S. laws and policies is creating opportunities for both new and veteran lawyers looking to break into this exciting realm, in either the private sector or government, says Michael Dodge at the University of North Dakota.

  • Series

    Ask A Mentor: What Makes A Successful Summer Associate? Author Photo

    Navigating a few densely packed weeks at a law firm can be daunting for summer associates, but those who are prepared to seize opportunities and not afraid to ask questions will be set up for success, says Julie Crisp at Latham.

  • How To Successfully Market Your Summer Associate Program Author Photo

    Law firms can attract the right summer associate candidates and help students see what makes a program unique by using carefully crafted messaging and choosing the best ambassadors to deliver it, says Tamara McClatchey, director of career services at the University of Chicago Law School.

  • Opinion

    Judges Deserve Congress' Commitment To Their Safety Author Photo

    Following the tragic attack on U.S. District Judge Esther Salas' family last summer and amid rising threats against the judiciary, legislation protecting federal judges' personal information and enhancing security measures at courthouses is urgently needed, says U.S. District Judge Roslynn Mauskopf, director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

  • Series

    Ask A Mentor: How Can Recalcitrant Attys Use Social Media? Author Photo

    Social media can be intimidating for reluctant lawyers but it can also be richly rewarding, as long as attorneys remember that professional accounts will always reflect on their firms and colleagues, and follow some best practices to avoid embarrassment, says Sean Marotta at Hogan Lovells.

  • Keys To Digitizing Inefficient Contract Management Processes Author Photo

    Neville Eisenberg and Mark Grayson at BCLP explain how they sped up contract execution for one client by replacing email with a centralized, digital tool for negotiations and review, and how the principles they adhered to can be helpful for other law firms looking to improve poorly managed contract management processes.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Can Firms Coach Associates Remotely? Author Photo

    Practicing law through virtual platforms will likely persist even after the pandemic, so law firms and senior lawyers should consider refurbishing their associate mentoring programs to facilitate personal connections, professionalism and effective training in a remote environment, says Carol Goodman at Herrick Feinstein.

  • How Law Firms Can Welcome And Celebrate Autistic Lawyers Author Photo

    As the U.S. observes Autism Acceptance Month, autistic attorney Haley Moss describes the societal barriers and stereotypes that keep neurodivergent lawyers from disclosing their disabilities, and how law firms can better accommodate and level the playing field for attorneys whose minds work outside of the prescribed norm.

  • Law Firm Tips For Evaluating AI And Machine Learning Tools Author Photo

    Many legal technology vendors now sell artificial intelligence and machine learning tools at a premium price tag, but law firms must take the time to properly evaluate them as not all offerings generate process efficiencies or even use the technologies advertised, says Steven Magnuson at Ballard Spahr.

  • A Call For Personal Accountability On Diversity And Inclusion Author Photo

    While chief legal officers are increasingly involved in creating corporate diversity, inclusion and anti-bigotry policies, all lawyers have a responsibility to be discrimination busters and bias interrupters regardless of the title they hold, says Veta T. Richardson at the Association of Corporate Counsel.

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