News Roundup

Afternoon Briefs: Future civil rights lawyers win scholarships; LSAC-funded pipeline program seeks requests for proposals

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Future civil rights lawyers receive scholarships

The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund has named the first 10 “Marshall-Motley Scholars,” who will receive law school scholarships in exchange for a commitment to serve as civil rights lawyers based in the South for eight years. The scholars include former interns in the White House, the Congressional Black Caucus, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Equal Justice Initiative. Hundreds of people applied for the scholarships. (NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund press release,, NPR)

Pipeline program funded by LSAC seeking law school requests for proposals

The Law School Admission Council is seeking requests for proposals from law schools for its PreLaw Undergraduate Scholars Programs. Known as the PLUS Program, it funds law school offerings focused on helping people interested in becoming lawyers. It’s targeted at rising undergraduate sophomores and juniors from groups that are underrepresented in the legal community, but anyone can apply, according to the LSAC website. (Law School Admission Council website)

SCOTUS will consider ineffective assistance issue

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to consider whether habeas courts can consider evidence outside the state-court record when a defendant claims that they received ineffective assistance at trial and after conviction. The Supreme Court had ruled in 2012 in Martinez v. Ryan that ineffective assistance by an appellate lawyer can excuse a failure to raise an ineffective trial counsel claim. The cert petition filed by Arizona in two murder cases, captioned Shinn v. Ramirez, claims that federal law bars development of evidence in a review on the merits of the ineffective assistance claim. A brief filed by public defenders in the new case claims that the evidence would necessarily have to be introduced, and the state’s “real complaint is with this court’s decision in Martinez v. Ryan.” (U.S. Supreme Court order list, SCOTUSblog, the SCOTUSblog case page, the cert petition, the brief in opposition)

Supreme Court accepts case on review of arbitration awards

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to decide whether federal courts have the power to confirm or vacate arbitration awards under the Federal Arbitration Act when the underlying dispute involves a federal issue. The case is Badgerow v. Walters. (U.S. Supreme Court order list, SCOTUSblog, Courthouse News Service, the SCOTUSblog case page, the cert petition)

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