Overlawyered » Walter Olson http://overlawyered.com Chronicling the high cost of our legal system Mon, 26 Jan 2015 05:15:08 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Colorado cake clash controversy http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/colorado-cake-clash-controversy/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/colorado-cake-clash-controversy/#comments Mon, 26 Jan 2015 05:15:08 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=51002 No, that “bake me an anti-gay cake” guy in Denver has no legal case. Now back to real issues [Volokh, our coverage of conflict between bake-my-cake lawsuits and individual liberty] Tweet Tags: discrimination law

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No, that “bake me an anti-gay cake” guy in Denver has no legal case. Now back to real issues [Volokh, our coverage of conflict between bake-my-cake lawsuits and individual liberty]

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Schools roundup http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/schools-roundup-25/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/schools-roundup-25/#comments Mon, 26 Jan 2015 05:05:05 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50828 Illinois school district warns parents that in doing investigations under new cyber-bullying law it may require students to hand over their Facebook passwords [Vice Motherboard; earlier on "cyber-bullying"] Powerful, from Christina Hoff Sommers: how a shoddy NPR / Center for Public Integrity campus-rape study fueled legal fury of Department of Education’s Civil Rights Division [The […]

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  • Illinois school district warns parents that in doing investigations under new cyber-bullying law it may require students to hand over their Facebook passwords [Vice Motherboard; earlier on "cyber-bullying"]
  • Powerful, from Christina Hoff Sommers: how a shoddy NPR / Center for Public Integrity campus-rape study fueled legal fury of Department of Education’s Civil Rights Division [The Daily Beast] Nancy Gertner, retired federal judge and prominent progressive voice, on due process for college accused [American Prospect] Questions for New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand [KC Johnson, Minding the Campus]
  • Smith College: “the word crazy was censored from the transcript, replaced with the term ‘ableist slur.'” [Kevin Cullen, Boston Globe]
  • “Community College Courtesy of the Federal Taxpayer? No Thanks” [Neal McCluskey, Arnold Kling]
  • “Families Of Two Newtown Victims Sue Town And School Board” [CBS Connecticut via Skenazy; recently on suits against gun businesses]
  • More coverage of open records requests as way to go after ideologically disliked professors [Inside Higher Ed, our take last month]
  • Washington Post piece went viral, but it’s dead wrong: “No, A Majority of US Public School Students are Not In Poverty” [Alex Tabarrok] Look, a not-yet-published paper that claims to confirm something many of us want dearly to believe about school finance. But will it have the staying power of Prof. Hanushek’s? [WaPo "WonkBlog"]
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    “State tells Detroit man: Pay for child that isn’t yours or go to jail!” http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/state-tells-detroit-man-pay-child-isnt-go-jail/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/state-tells-detroit-man-pay-child-isnt-go-jail/#comments Sun, 25 Jan 2015 21:53:17 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50998 As we noted in October on the case of Carnell Alexander, once the state’s Deadbeat Dad game starts against you, actual innocence may be only one of many cards in play. [WXYZ] Tweet Tags: child support, Detroit, procedure

    “State tells Detroit man: Pay for child that isn’t yours or go to jail!” is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system

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    As we noted in October on the case of Carnell Alexander, once the state’s Deadbeat Dad game starts against you, actual innocence may be only one of many cards in play. [WXYZ]

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    Sheldon Silver’s ethical train wreck http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/sheldon-silvers-ethical-train-wreck/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/sheldon-silvers-ethical-train-wreck/#comments Sun, 25 Jan 2015 17:16:36 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50976 “Ugly” question raised by arrest of New York assembly speaker Sheldon Silver: how often do law firms trade cash to doctors for mesothelioma referrals? [Alison Frankel/Reuters, Science magazine, earlier] And from the New York Times: …mesothelioma doctors and personal injury lawyers specializing in asbestos-related litigation have developed over the years what some medical ethical experts […]

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    “Ugly” question raised by arrest of New York assembly speaker Sheldon Silver: how often do law firms trade cash to doctors for mesothelioma referrals? [Alison Frankel/Reuters, Science magazine, earlier] And from the New York Times:

    …mesothelioma doctors and personal injury lawyers specializing in asbestos-related litigation have developed over the years what some medical ethical experts describe as an unseemly alliance.

    For plaintiffs’ lawyers, mesothelioma patients are a bonanza, worth $1.5 million to $2 million on average per case, according to legal experts; individual cases can yield much more. The hunger for these clients is evident to anyone who has watched late-night cable television and seen the garish ads aimed at those afflicted with the disease….

    A symbiotic relationship has emerged, with lawyers financing research on the disease for doctors who send along streams of potentially lucrative clients.

    More links:

    • “Silver’s perversion of a health-care grant that was earmarked for post-9/11 programs” [New York Daily News editorial] Columbia University closes its Mesothelioma Center, deeply involved in the scandal, which had been given a commendation by the New York Assembly in 2011 as its director quietly referred millions in cases to Silver [Daily News]
    • Circle wagons first, name committee chairs later: Albany in panic over Silver nab [New York Post, Albany Times-Union]
    • Lawyer referral fees, nonprofit cash figured in Lerach/Weiss scandal as well [Daniel Fisher, more]
    • Eric Schneiderman, Kathleen Rice… “Law Firm at Center of Silver Scandal Donated Huge Sums” to Moreland Commission figures [New York Observer]
    • More: New York Post on, inter alia, strong position held by Weitz & Luxenberg in New York courts; Wayne Barrett/Village Voice 2009 on Silver’s work in obtaining Chief Judge job for old friend Jonathan Lippman. And from Bob McManus at the New York Post: “Orange Is The New Silver.”
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    Loser-pays provision in 2011 Texas legal reform http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/loser-pays-provision-2011-texas-legal-reform/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/loser-pays-provision-2011-texas-legal-reform/#comments Sat, 24 Jan 2015 21:13:05 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50956 HB 274’s motion-to-dismiss/fee-shifting provision is getting more use than some foresaw at the time [Angela Morris, Texas Lawyer, quoting Austin attorney David Chamberlain] Tweet Tags: loser pays, Texas

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    HB 274’s motion-to-dismiss/fee-shifting provision is getting more use than some foresaw at the time [Angela Morris, Texas Lawyer, quoting Austin attorney David Chamberlain]

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    NYC: ADA complaint mill could close punk-rock landmark http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/nyc-ada-complaint-mill-close-punk-rock-landmark/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/nyc-ada-complaint-mill-close-punk-rock-landmark/#comments Sat, 24 Jan 2015 18:17:52 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50958 “Manitoba’s, one of the last punk rock dive bars in New York’s East Village, owned by former Dictators frontman “Handsome Dick” Manitoba, could be headed for a premature end. Its would-be executioner is not rising rents or gentrification, but the hefty cash settlement of a lawsuit” over disabled access, one of many filed by a […]

    NYC: ADA complaint mill could close punk-rock landmark is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system

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    “Manitoba’s, one of the last punk rock dive bars in New York’s East Village, owned by former Dictators frontman “Handsome Dick” Manitoba, could be headed for a premature end. Its would-be executioner is not rising rents or gentrification, but the hefty cash settlement of a lawsuit” over disabled access, one of many filed by a Rye, N.Y. man in connection with the law firm of attorney Bradley Weitz [Anthony Fisher, Reason] Overlawyered readers have met Weitz before, here (earlier client sued over Soho pedicure station although having no feet) and here.

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    Assumption of risk, wrestling, and “Skull Von Krush” http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/assumption-risk-wrestling-skull-von-krush/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/assumption-risk-wrestling-skull-von-krush/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 16:35:09 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50950 A man who performed under the name “Skull Von Krush” is now a plaintiff in a suit seeking class-action status that claims pro wrestling hid the dangers of concussion [Associated Press/Asbury Park Press] Tweet Tags: assumption of risk, sports

    Assumption of risk, wrestling, and “Skull Von Krush” is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system

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    A man who performed under the name “Skull Von Krush” is now a plaintiff in a suit seeking class-action status that claims pro wrestling hid the dangers of concussion [Associated Press/Asbury Park Press]

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    Creative, but no go http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/creative-no-go/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/creative-no-go/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 12:37:50 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50940 Adventures in choice of law: an appeals court swats down an attempt to apply liberal Illinois law to an accident on the road in Indiana. A lower court had gone along with the idea. [Cook County Record] Tweet Tags: Illinois

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    Adventures in choice of law: an appeals court swats down an attempt to apply liberal Illinois law to an accident on the road in Indiana. A lower court had gone along with the idea. [Cook County Record]

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    “Warning: The Article You’re About to Read Might Make You Laugh” http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/warning-article-youre-read-might-make-laugh/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/warning-article-youre-read-might-make-laugh/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 09:55:24 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50943 The Wall Street Journal news-section A-hed tackles silly (sometimes deliberately so) disclaimers, such as IKEA’s gigantic sign portraying a hot dog with the disclaimer “*not actual size.” But it also notes the high costs that litigation or regulatory action can inflict when disclaimers are omitted. Our readers discussed the Red Bull case two years ago. […]

    “Warning: The Article You’re About to Read Might Make You Laugh” is a post from Overlawyered - Chronicling the high cost of our legal system

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    The Wall Street Journal news-section A-hed tackles silly (sometimes deliberately so) disclaimers, such as IKEA’s gigantic sign portraying a hot dog with the disclaimer “*not actual size.” But it also notes the high costs that litigation or regulatory action can inflict when disclaimers are omitted. Our readers discussed the Red Bull case two years ago.

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    State of free speech doctrine at Harvard http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/state-free-speech-law-harvard-law/ http://overlawyered.com/2015/01/state-free-speech-law-harvard-law/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 05:15:20 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=50935 Harvard lawprof Noah Feldman on the Paris/Fox case: let government sue media for saying (or maybe even for letting guests say) wrong things about government. Sure, what could go wrong? Related, and outrageous: Morgan State University (Baltimore) journalism school dean wants to classify religiously irreverent speech as “fighting words,” which would throw into doubt its […]

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    Harvard lawprof Noah Feldman on the Paris/Fox case: let government sue media for saying (or maybe even for letting guests say) wrong things about government. Sure, what could go wrong?

    Related, and outrageous: Morgan State University (Baltimore) journalism school dean wants to classify religiously irreverent speech as “fighting words,” which would throw into doubt its legal protection [DeWayne Wickham, USA Today] More: Allahpundit, Taranto/WSJ, The College Fix; edited to reflect Wickham’s (non)-clarification of his stance in the last-named link).

    P.S. Via @benjaminlam: “Today’s Straits Times [Singapore] carried Feldman’s article.”

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