Noon-Thirty News 07/07/10

Cabbie Goess Off Meter
[WFAA]

After a cab ride full of arguments over directions, cab driver Larry Darnell Miles, got out of the driver’s seen, opened the passenger door, and stabbed Eason Pryce Maykus in the neck with a knife.

Police found an empty bottle of gin, an empty 240z can, and a full bottle of gin inside the van.  Really makes you appreciate NY cab drivers.  All you need to get by there is the magic phrase, kaifa haloka sadiqi, and all is good.

The Call is Coming From Inside the Admissions Department!
[Legal Profession Blog]

After a spate of anonymous angry calls to the University of Michigan School of Law admissions department, “Dean Z.” posted a warning to callers:

We know who you are. If you want to be anonymous, you’re going to need to invest in call-blocking technology.

Makes you wonder just what is going on at Michigan that is causing so many angry calls.  Also makes you wonder who is dumb enough to think the school wouldn’t have caller ID.  Your cell phone may not register, but it would still show the number, and they can check it against their records.

If the school doesn’t bump the callers for their anonymous venting, they should bump them for being too stupid to protect their anonymity.

Dusquesne Professor Passed Over for Promotion, Sues
[Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Vanessa Browne-Barbour is suing Dusquesne Law after being passed over for position as dean.  The person who got the job, Ken Gormley, is a white man.  Browne-Barbour is a black woman.  She is claiming she wasn’t considered because of her race and gender.  Though Browne-Barbour is only an associate professor, she claims she is more qualified for the position, than Gormley, a full professor, because she has formerly served as an associate dean.

Hm…  She was once an associate dean, and is still merely an associate professor?  Something tells me she wasn’t considered for the deanship because she sucked in her previous job.

83% of Firms Won’t Say if They’re Outsourcing
[ABA Journal]

Fronterion, a Chicago-based outsourcing consulting firm conducted a survey of law firms regarding outsourcing of legal work.  Of the 30 firms that responded to the survey, 83% would not comment on their outsourcing policy.  I think we can safely assume that responses like “We consider the information you are requesting to be proprietary” are a good indication that the firm is either currently outsourcing work, or is planning to outsource, and know it will look bad to say “No outsourcing” only a year later to say “No comment.”

But how bad is outsourcing anyways?  You will need to disclose it to the client, but you can probably draft your engagement letter to include outsourcing.  When you hire a big law firm, you know that the partner you talked to isn’t doing most of the work, it’s being handed down the line.  Is it such a big deal if that line goes out of the law firm, so long as the same partner who reviews associates’ work reviews outsourced work?

Outsourcing may even make legal practice cheaper and more efficient.  Why pay pay $300 for a first year associate in NY to read up on the E-SIGN law, when the firm could hire a boutique firm specializing in cyberlaw out of Piedmont, NC for a fraction of the price?  It’s basically just subcontracting, and so long as they’re subcontracting to firms within the US, this would open up huge opportunities to solo practices and boutiques.

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