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Showing 59 posts from 2014.

Congratulations to the ABA Journal's Top 100 Blawgs of 2014

Towards the end of every year, the ABA Journal publishes a list of the top 100 law-related blogs (blawgs) of that year. The 2014 edition, the eighth of its kind, features 100  great blawgs from around the country and from every area of practice. If you haven't checked out these blawgs, do it now, and maybe you'll find a new resource for the coming year.

Illinois Joins 4 States in Adopting Federal Rule of Evidence 502(d)

In 2013, Illinois joined Arizona, Indiana, Iowa and Washington in adopting paragraph d of Federal Rule of Evidence (FRE) 502 which protects disclosure of privileged information, if made pursuant to a court order, from operating as a waiver in any other proceeding. More ›

Mining the Social Media Treasure Trove

It would be a platitude, of course, to observe that the advent of social media coupled with advances in electronic technology have revolutionized interpersonal communications. People no longer write letters, they send "wall-to-wall" messages; they no longer write in diaries, they blog or post status updates; they no longer keep photo albums, they upload photos into Instagram or videos on Youtube; they no longer hand out business cards, they "follow" people on Twitter or extend "friend requests" on Facebook. Through social networking sites ("SNS") like Facebook, MySpace, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat and micro-blogging sites like Twitter, people have taken to recording and uploading every thought, every activity, every place ever visited and even every meal ever taken into cyberspace. More ›

The Risks of Using Public Wi-Fi

Model Rule of Professional Conduct 1.6 requires lawyers to use reasonable means to protect client confidences in electronic communications. Lawyers often choose to use secure or encrypted networks for client communications. But how secure are the Wi-Fi networks at your local coffee shop? Much has been written lately about the dangers of public Wi-Fi use. However, many may not realize how dangerous the use of public Wi-Fi can be to your own privacy and personal security. My firm's deputy general counsel and communication security partner, Steve Puiszis, found this short article describing how a hacker can readily capture information sent via public Wi-Fi. For a hacker, it's almost as easy as child's play. Steve recommended that we all take a minute to read this eye opening article and send it to others who use public Wi Fi. More ›

California Court of Appeal Decision Rejects Fiduciary Exception to Attorney-Client Privilege, but Raises new Questions

On November 25, 2014, in the decision Edwards Wildman Palmer v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County (No. B255182), discussed in an earlier blog post, the California Court of Appeal delivered an excellent, bright-line opinion, protecting discussions between firm members and their in-house general counsel, relating to possible liability, including methods of dealing with a complaint or claim made by current client of the firm. This question has been a moving target for California law firms for many years. More ›

California Weighs In on In-Firm Privilege

Shhhh -- it's privilegedIn Palmer v. Superior Court, ___ Cal.Rptr.3d ___, 2014 WL 6662053 (2014), a California appellate court upheld the in-house attorney-client privilege. The court noted recent cases which have addressed what have been called the “fiduciary” and the “current client” exceptions. Generally, courts have used both terms to describe the exception to the privilege. The premise underlying both terms is that a law firm cannot assert the attorney-client privilege against a current client when the firm's self-representation creates a conflict of interest with that client, or otherwise breaches the firm's duties to the client. More ›

LMRM 2015 – Putting Arbitration on Trial

At the 14th annual Legal Malpractice Risk Management (“LMRM”) Conference, being held in Chicago from February 25-27, a panel of distinguished attorneys will put the practice of arbitrating professional liability disputes on trial. More ›

LMRM 2015 — Developments in Litigating Legal Malpractice Claims 2015

At the upcoming Legal Malpractice Risk Management (“LMRM”) Conference, held in Chicago from February 25-27, a panel of veteran trial attorneys will consider and discuss solutions for the unique issues that have arisen in the past year relative to the litigation of legal malpractice claims. This panel, entitled “Developments in Litigating Legal Malpractice Claims 2015,” will provide an interactive discussion of the legal and practical significance of several recent decisions that, while centered on familiar themes, shift the paradigm for legal malpractice practitioners. More ›

Considering a Lateral Move? Then Consider This.

Lawyer movement from one firm to another has become increasingly common and is only expected to continue. However, leaving your old firm or hiring a lateral attorney isn’t as easy as forwarding calls and reprinting business cards. In fact, there are several ethical issues that arise when lawyers leave firms — issues that affect the current firm, the departing lawyer, and the new firm. Specifically, lawyers and law firms should be aware of the ethical considerations involving fiduciary obligations and client contact, restricting lateral movement, information and property rights, and client confidences.   More ›

LMRM 2015 – Bending the Bars – Testing the Bounds of the Actual Innocence Requirement in Criminal Legal Malpractice

Actual innocence is a generally-accepted element of a criminal legal malpractice claim. The last 12 months have seen refinements of the requirement in its application to lesser-included offenses, criminal contempt proceedings in civil cases, and pre-criminal act advice. Courts have also addressed the preclusive effect of an ineffective assistance of counsel proceeding on the actual innocence requirement, and whether the rule should apply when a law firm provides information that leads to the conviction of its own client. More ›