Greeting and happy Monday, lords and ladies, from the unseasonably warm Teton Valley. I will spare you my prefatory ramblings and pontifications, but here are five items I’ve flagged for your consideration before the straight ATJ news:
- June, 2015 – the National Center for State Courts’ “Trends in State Courts 2015” review includes articles on self-represented litigant support as well as judicial leadership and management issues.
- There were just 14 female law school deans in 1998. Today there are 59. And the newest cohort of incoming deans is 40% female. (National Law Journal)
- Speaking of numbers, new US Census data highlight the Millenial Generation’s racial and ethnic diversity, especially compared to their seniors.
“Charitable giving rose for the fifth year in a row in 2014, rebounding past a prerecession peak to an estimated $358 billion, according to an annual report from the Giving USA Foundation.” (New York Times)
- A currency-union member can’t pay its debts, and it’s a lot closer than Greece. (New York Times)
The ATJ news in very short:
- The American Lawyer’s just-published “Special Report: The Justice Gap”
- legal aid funding news from Boston, DC, NH, and WY
- inaugural class of NY’s Pro Bono Scholars gets admitted
- Rhode Island does some unbundling
- pro bono patent law program launched to serve VT entrepreneurs, and some FL news
- NYT op-ed: narrowing the justice gap by better using the supply of lawyers
- a call to provide lawyers for all unaccompanied minors
- the Aloha State’s annual ATJ conference
- new research: the cost of seeking civil justice in Canada
- music (x 3)!!!
- The American Lawyer just published a multi-part “Special Report: The Justice Gap.” The thrust of the report focuses on how much large law firms give (or don’t) to support legal aid: “At best, the nation’s biggest and wealthiest firms donate 0.1 percent of revenue to legal aid, an institution in crisis. Isn’t it time for more of them to pledge serious money?”
- a New York Times article covers the AmLaw report: “Major Law Firms Give Little to Legal Aid, Study Finds”
- State & city legal aid funding announcement potpourri:
- 6.24.15 – “The Boston Bar Foundation…will provide $950,000 in grants to 23 community organizations that…provide legal services to those in need. Approximately 40% of the funding is comprised of proceeds from the BBF’s annual John & Abigail Adams Benefit and BBF reserves, with the remainder derived from Interest on Lawyer Trust Account (IOLTA) funds.” (Media release) FYI bar foundation nerds: the John & Abigail Adams Benefit is a classy-lookin’ fundraising soiree.
- Here’s a previous blog post detailing recent awards in DC, NH, and WY.
- 6.25.15 – “The first class of Pro Bono Scholars, a program that allows 3L students to spend their final semesters of law school working in the field, was sworn in this week.” (New York Law Journal). Here’s more on the Pro Bono Scholars program.
- 6.22.15 -unbundled legal services OK’d in Rhode Island. “The high court earlier this month cleared the way for lawyers to provide a limited scope of representation…for people representing themselves, as long as those services are reasonable and the litigant gives informed consent. Lawyers must sign any pleadings that they help a client prepare and disclose extent of their role in the case.” (Providence Journal)
- My old ABA colleagues Sara Smith and Iron Will Hornsby maintain a good database of state unbundling rules here.
- 6.22.15 – pro bono patent law program in Vermont. “A new program…will help inventors and small businesses to get donated legal services from patent attorneys. Burlington Generator is a space where…entrepreneurs can work…without having to invest in office space. Just the kind of folks who could benefit from a new program made possible by the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. It requires the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to work with law associations to create programs to connect small businesses and inventors with patent attorneys willing to help them free of charge.” (WCAX coverage)
- Some thoughts on Florida’s recently launched program: “Keys to Success of the Florida Patent Pro Bono Program”
- 6.17.15 – a New York Times op-ed by Citizen Advocacy Center founder Theresa Amato looks at the justice gap, notes that the problem is not an undersupply of lawyers, and proposes ways to connect more lawyers and service-innovators with underserved client populations.
- 6.16.15 – “The U.S. government should guarantee legal representation to unaccompanied minors seeking asylum, end expedited processing of those children and families, and begin recognizing gang violence as a basis for asylum claims. Those are among recommendations Tuesday by Jesuit Refugee Service/USA and 13 Jesuit law schools following a study of efforts to represent asylum seekers from Central America.” (National Law Journal)
- Here’s the report, the title of which may be longer than the report itself: “A Fair Chance for Due Process: Challenges in Legal Protection for Central American Seekers and Other Vulnerable Migrants”
- 6.15.15 – Hawaii’s “Narrowing the Justice Gap” conference: “Leaders in Hawai‘i’s legal, judicial, business, academic and social services communities will examine ways to increase services to the state’s most vulnerable citizens as part of the day-long 2015 Access to Justice Conference, scheduled for Friday, June 19….” (U. Hawaii media release)
- 6.10.15 – new research – “The Cost of Seeking Civil Justice in Canada”: “How much does it cost individual Canadians to seek civil justice? This article compiles empirical data about the monetary, temporal, and psychological costs confronting individual justice-seekers in this country…. [A]nalysis of private costs can improve access to justice in two ways. First, it can help public sector policy-makers to reduce these costs. Second, it can help lawyers and entrepreneurs to identify new…ways to reduce the costs that are most onerous to individuals with different types of civil legal need.”
Musics!!! Today there are three of them:
First, it’s Pearl Jam, and I’ve always loved their more bare-bones, punk stuff. “The Fixer” is all energy:
Channeling the 80’s, here’s Slowdance with some advice for the fellas in “Boyfriend”:
Enough channeling. Here’s the real thing from a recently-passed legend who always did have a knack for marrying New Orleans and Chicago sounds: