I thought 2013 was one of the strangest years yet for wackiness in the legal system, with some of the weirdest lawsuits and litigants we’ve seen in years. But judging from the legal stories that have emerged so far in the new year, 2014 is shaping up to be a banner year for legal oddities.
In a recent interview, Justice Antonin Scalia—as towering a legal authority as they come—discussed his belief as a Catholic not only that the Devil exists, but that Satan is still very much around and even “wilier” than ever before.
We’ve all had those moments when we wish we had thought something through, taken a different course of action, held our tongue instead of speaking, or not hit “send” on that email. Lawyers and judges are no different from everybody—sometimes we speak first and think later, much to our later regret.
In case the government shutdown has you worried about missing out on all the strange happenings at our nation’s courthouses, fear not; there’ enough weirdness going on in the legal system to keep you happy for quite some time.
It is one of those famous lines, right up there with “To be or not to be,” that have enshrined William Shakespeare as one of the greatest playwrights of all time: “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.”
According to the latest poll by the Pew Research Center, lawyers rank dead last among 10 professions for contributions to society—behind the military, teachers, doctors, scientists, engineers, the clergy, artists, journalists and even business executives.
We’ve been deluged lately with weighty, thought-provoking cases in the legal system: the George Zimmerman trial over the shooting death of Trayvon Martin and what it says about race relations in America; the fight over abortion legislation in Texas; and a series of potentially far-reaching U.S. Supreme Court decisions on everything from voting rights to affirmative action to same-sex marriage. At
At a March dinner commemorating the 40th anniversary of the University of New Hampshire School of Law, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia gave a speech in which he proclaimed modern legal education a “failure.”
In the nearly 24 years that I’ve been practicing law, I’ve been fortunate enough to receive some accolades from my colleagues. A number of these have been for a commitment to legal ethics and improving professionalism. I look at it as giving something back to the profession that’s given so much to me.
Law firm consultants like to throw around terms like “value added billing” and “alternative fee arrangements” in describing creative ways for lawyers to be compensated by their clients. But long before the billable hour, the flat rate, or the contingency fee, lawyers would make use of the barter system like anyone else. Even Abraham Lincoln accepted food and livestock periodically as payment for legal