ABA Journal

Trials & Litigation

19193 ABA Journal Trials & Litigation articles.

Top state court deadlocks on fiduciary exception to attorney-client privilege in K&L Gates case

A deadlocked Pennsylvania Supreme Court was unable to decide last week whether trust beneficiaries are entitled to legal billing statements and other lawyer communications with the trustee under a fiduciary exemption to attorney-client privilege.

In rare move, full 6th Circuit will hear initial arguments in abortion case; dissent blasts ‘procedural hopscotch’

In an unusual move, the full 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at Cincinnati will consider the constitutionality of a Tennessee abortion law without an initial ruling by a three-judge panel.

Afternoon Briefs: Supreme Court rules for religion; Ramsey Clark dies at 93

SCOTUS blocks restrictions on religious meetings at homes during pandemic

The U.S. Supreme Court blocked California’s restrictions on religious meetings at homes during the COVID-19 crisis in a 5-4 vote…

Minnesota’s unique ‘spark of life’ doctrine allows evidence about George Floyd’s life during former officer’s trial

A unique “spark of life” doctrine in Minnesota allows prosecutors to introduce evidence about George Floyd’s life in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who is accused of causing his death.

Judge rules for Trademark Express owner in suit alleging unauthorized practice

Updated: Nonlawyer employees of Trademark Express are not engaged in the practice of law, a federal judge said in a decision Tuesday.

In 325-page opinion, en banc 5th Circuit splits on preference for tribes in Native American adoptions

A case challenging a federal law giving Indian tribes preference in Native American adoptions could wind up before the U.S. Supreme Court, after a federal appeals court issued a fractured, 325-page en banc opinion Tuesday.

11th Circuit decision ‘effectively closes the internet’s doors to the blind,’ plaintiff’s lawyers say

Websites are not public accommodations that must be accessible to blind customers unless they create an intangible barrier that excludes disabled people from accessing goods and services in a physical store, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.

Evidence of jury racial bias in civil trial requires hearing, 6th Circuit says, citing ‘crackhead’ assumption

A federal trial court must hold a hearing to examine potential jury bias after one woman said jurors considered the Black plaintiff to be "a crackhead" and referred to his lawyers as the "Cosby Show," a federal appeals court has ruled.

Increasing revenue while cutting down on billable hours? ‘AI for Lawyers’ says it’s possible

As the founders of a company that provides AI-powered contract analysis software, Kira Systems' Noah Waisberg and Alexander Hudek are used to facing skepticism, fear and doubt from attorneys. Will AI steal their jobs? Would using it violate ethics rules? How can it be good for a business model that relies on the billable hour to cut down on the amount of time that it takes to review a contract?

Afternoon Briefs: Judge admonished partly for remote hearing impatience; ABA files brief opposing rigid cash bail

Judge admonished for impatience, guilt remark

A California judge has been admonished for a “display of impatience and irritation” and a remark about an acquitted defendant’s guilt. Judge Patrick E.…

Lawyer resigns from bar after he is accused of forging prosecutor’s signature

Ethics regulators in Massachusetts have accepted the resignation of a lawyer who was accused of signing an assistant U.S. attorney’s name to a settlement agreement in litigation against the U.S. government.

Top state court recognizes same-sex adultery as grounds for divorce

The New Hampshire Supreme Court has overturned a 2003 decision that had defined adultery as voluntary intercourse between members of the opposite sex.

Google’s use of Java code was fair use, SCOTUS rules in Oracle copyright battle

Google did not violate copyright law when it copied a portion of Java programming language for use in its Android platform for smartphones, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday in a 6-2 decision.

Company donates 1.2M eggs to food banks as part of lawsuit settlement

The Hillandale Farms Corp. is donating 1.2 million eggs to food banks in New York to settle a state price-gouging lawsuit.

New York City can’t use tort law to sue oil companies over climate change, 2nd Circuit says

Federal law gives the Environmental Protection Agency, not federal courts, the authority to regulate greenhouse emissions in the United States, a federal appeals court ruled as it tossed a climate change lawsuit Thursday.

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