This Weeks News

NYLJ Seeks Nominations for Professional Excellence Awards

The New York Law Journal is looking to honor the best and brightest among New York's legal community across several different categories.

Mayor Bill de Blasio

De Blasio Appoints 7 Interim NYC Judges

By Jason Grant |

After months of searching and, some would argue, delay, Mayor Bill de Blasio on Thursday announced the appointments of seven new interim Civil Court judges for New York City, along with two new appointments to the city's Criminal Court.

Mourners at a public memorial service for Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam on Friday at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Manhattan.

Memorial Service for Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam

By David Handschuh, Photographer |

Hundreds of members of the legal community, government officials and others who knew the late Court of Appeals Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam gathered on Friday at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine to pay their respects.

Attorney-emeritus Linda Clarke works a hotline at MFY Legal Services

Older Lawyers Pursue Social Justice Through Emeritus Program

By Jeff Storey |

A program launched seven years ago by then Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman as "a permanent piece of the puzzle" to close the justice gap for low-income New Yorkers has "grown steadily," with more than 200 senior attorneys currently volunteering with one of 64 approved host agencies.

UPS Hit With $247M Judgment Over Cigarette Shipments

By Andrew Denney |

A federal judge in Manhattan has awarded a combined $247 million in penalties and damages in favor of New York City and New York State against the United Parcel Service in a dispute over shipments of untaxed cigarettes into the state.

John O'Hara

Brooklyn Lawyer Cleared of Illegal Voting to Run for Judge

By Andrew Denney |

Brooklyn attorney John O'Hara, the first person charged with illegal voting since Susan B. Anthony, has over the past several years been reinstated to the bar and had his name cleared. Now he is setting his sights on a new challenge: He wants to lead a slate of insurgent candidates to run this year in the Democratic primary for open seats on the bench in Brooklyn Civil Court.

On the Move

Harris Beach has elected former New York State Senator Mike Nozzolio as a partner; Michael R. Gordon, formerly a partner at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, will be establishing GordonLaw LLP; and more announcements.

Nola Heller

Cahill Hires Unit Chief From SDNY

By Christine Simmons |

Nola Heller, chief of the violent and organized crime unit at the U.S. attorney's office for the Southern District of New York, is leaving in June to become a partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel.

Preet Bharara addresses the 250 New York Law School graduates and other attendees at Thursday's ceremony.

Bharara to Law Grads: Stand Up to Authority to Defend Justice

By Andrew Denney |

Preet Bharara encouraged New York Law School graduates during a commencement address on Thursday to question others—even their superiors—when the time is right. "Justice cannot tolerate fake news, or alternative facts or abuse of power," said Bharara.

Federal Jury Awards $8M to Man Injured by Police Stun Gun

By Jason Grant |

A federal jury has awarded a mentally disabled Long Island man and his parents $8.32 million after police used a stun gun on the man four times inside his home in 2010.

Matthew Parrott

Fried Frank Hires Katten's NY Real Estate Litigation Head

By Brian Baxter |

Matthew Parrott, head of the New York real estate and distressed debt litigation group at Katten Muchin Rosenman, has joined Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson as a partner in Manhattan. Fried Frank, riding high from a successful financial year in 2016, has been busy on the lateral recruitment front in 2017.

Mary Jo White

Former SEC Officials Say Don't Bank on Big Regulatory Disruption

By B. Colby Hamilton |

Be happy about the prospect of regulatory upheaval in Washington, D.C. Don't worry. That was the sentiment shared by former U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission chairwoman Mary Jo White and JPMorgan Chase & Co. vice chairman Stephen Cutler at a legal summit.

A large crowd rallies in front of the U.S. Capitol to denounce President Donald Trump’s travel ban order.

4th Circuit Uses Trump's Comments in Blocking Travel Ban

By Cogan Schneier |

Thursday’s opinion keeps in place a Maryland district court’s nationwide injunction against the order, issued March 6.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Full 2nd Circuit to Mull if Title VII Bans Anti-Gay Bias

By Tom McParland |

The Second Circuit agreed Thursday to hear en banc a case that could overturn circuit precedent that Title VII does not cover employment discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Rudy Giuliani and Michael Mukasey

Giuliani, Mukasey to Remain in Gold Dealer's Defense

By Andrew Denney |

A gold trader charged with violating U.S. sanctions on Iran will keep former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and former U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey on his defense team despite the fact that their firms represent banks that allegedly fell victim to the violations.

This undated file image released by Profiles in History shows the first chapter of a manuscript that would become the Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous Sues Over 12-Step Manuscript

Alcoholics Anonymous is demanding the return of its 1939 original manuscript describing the "Twelve Step" program of recovery from alcoholism, which is to be sold June 8 at auction.

New York State Capitol in Albany

Lawmakers Vote to Let Uber, Lyft Start Upstate June 29

New York lawmakers have voted to let Uber and Lyft begin picking up passengers in upstate New York a little early.

2017 McDonald Awards

By David Handschuh, Photographer |

The New York City Bar Association presented its annual Kathryn A. McDonald Awards on Wednesday to Lesley Friedland, the Executive Director of FamilyKind, and Chris Gottlieb and Martin Guggenheim of the NYU Family Defense Clinic.

New York Lawmaker Wants to Make 'Stealthing' a Felony

A New York lawmaker wants to make it a felony to remove a condom during intercourse without the permission of a sexual partner, a practice known as "stealthing."

Am Law 200 Rankings Bring Bad News for Some NY Firms

By Christine Simmons |

In contrast to the double-digit growth enjoyed by many top Wall Street firms, most New York firms in the bottom half of the Am Law 200 saw little to no expansion last year, according to financial rankings released Wednesday by The American Lawyer.

Fox News offices in Washington, D.C.

Counsel for Fox News Seeks Sanctions Against Ex-Show Host's Lawyer

By Jason Grant |

Fox News fired back at Andrea Tantaros on Wednesday, claiming that her allegations against the network were an "outright hoax," and requesting sanctions that include a dismissal of the case and a disciplinary referral for Judd Burstein, Tantaros' Manhattan-based lawyer.

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C.

SEC Charges 4 in Alleged Medicare Insider Trading Scheme

By B. Colby Hamilton |

The SEC says information from a former colleague about Medicare rate reductions was passed along to two hedge fund analysts who made millions off insider trading.

Mark Adkins

One of Canada's Largest Firms Heads to New York

By Meghan Tribe |

McCarthy Tétrault has opened an office in New York after recruiting corporate partner Mark Adkins from Canadian rival Blake, Cassels & Graydon. Adkins will serve as his new firm's New York managing partner.

U.S. Justice Department headquarters in Washington.

Proposed DOJ Corporate Crime-Fighting Budget Suffers Few Cuts

By Sue Reisinger |

Though the U.S. Department of Justice took a small hit in President Donald Trump's 2018 budget request, the Criminal Division actually saw its budget increase slightly. By comparison, however, the Civil Division did not fare quite as well.

Justice Sheila Abdus-Salaam appears at a New York state Senate Judiciary committee meeting at the Capitol in Albany, N.Y., on Tuesday, April 30, 2013.   (Photo by Tim Roske)

Public Memorial for Abdus-Salaam Set for Friday

By Andrew Denney |

While her death remains under investigation, Court of Appeals Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam, who was found floating in the Hudson River on April 12, will be honored on Friday at a public memorial in Manhattan.

Jonathan Pollard in 1998

Pollard Blocked in Bid to Loosen Parole Terms

By Andrew Denney |

A federal appeals court has denied a bid by Jonathan Pollard, who served prison time for leaking U.S. intelligence to Israel more than 30 years ago, to alter the terms of his parole.

Settlement With Tylenol Maker Nets NYS $1.3M

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Johnson & Johnson subsidiary McNeil PPC has agreed to pay 42 states a total of $33 million to settle claims that it distributed contaminated over-the-counter drugs and unlawfully promoted those products.

Workers at a Second Avenue subway construction site

Panel Faults NYC, MTA Over Witnesses in Injury Case

By Jason Grant |

A Manhattan appeals court has struck the answer of New York City and the MTA in a worker-injury case after the defendants failed to produce witnesses and then produced an unprepared witness.

Richard Rojas

Jury Indicts Suspect in Fatal Times Square Car Crash

The charges have not yet been made public, but Richard Rojas, who did not appear, was previously arrested on charges of murder and attempted murder. An arraignment was set for July 13, and he doesn't have to enter a plea until then.

FIFA flags at the entrance to the head office in Zurich

Ex-Aide to Soccer Federation Leader Enters Guilty Plea

A former aide to the president of the North American professional soccer federation pleaded guilty Wednesday to a single charge—money laundering conspiracy—in a worldwide soccer scandal.

Frankfurt Kurnit Assists With 'Fun-Raising'

Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz, which performs all legal work for Red Nose Day's U.S. operations, prepare to celebrate the occasion, which raises millions of dollars each year for children's causes.

Marc E. Kasowitz.

Trump Turns to Kasowitz, Rejecting DC Legal Vets

By David Bario |

In a characteristically unorthodox move, the president is reportedly poised to tap commercial litigator Marc Kasowitz to lead his personal legal team amid probes into his campaign's alleged contacts with Russia.

Doron Goldstein, Katten Muchin Rosenman.

Facebook Fine Could Slow Future EU Launches

By David Ruiz |

Katten Muchin Rosenman's Doron Goldstein discusses how Facebook's recent $122 million fine by EU regulators could affect future expansion efforts in the region.

Justice Acosta and left to right, top: Justices Kern, Moulton and Oing; middle: Singh, Christopher and Iannacci; bottom: Pritzker, Rumsey and Winslow

Promotion of Acosta, 9 Other Justices Wins Praise From Litigators, Judges

By Jason Grant |

A day after being named presiding justice of the Appellate Division, First Department, Rolando Acosta said he was honored to have the chance to "implement changes that will be impacting" the court.

Rudy Giuliani

Giuliani to Court: I Had No Role in Trump Travel Ban

By Andrew Denney |

Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani said in court papers filed Monday that he had no hand in crafting controversial executive orders from the Trump administration banning travel from Muslim-majority countries and that he has not served on a commission related to such orders.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. and Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark

All 5 NYC DAs Agree on One Thing: Better Pay Needed to Attract, Retain Talent

By Andrew Denney |

New York City's district attorneys say that to attract and retain legal talent they need additional funding to be able to offer prosecutors more competitive salaries.

Portrait of President Trump

Where's Trump? President's Portrait Absent From Federal Office Walls

By B. Colby Hamilton |

A change in the occupant of the White House means a change in the portraits displayed across the country in federal agency offices. But four months into Donald Trump's presidency, there's just empty wall space in several New York law enforcement offices.

A storeroom in the Brooklyn Criminal Court at 120 Schermerhorn Street in Brooklyn caught fire on the afternoon of May 10. The incident was not fatal, but ten people at the scene were treated for smoke inhalation.

Fire in Brooklyn Courthouse Deemed Accidental

By Andrew Denney |

An overloaded power strip was to blame for the May 10 fire at the Brooklyn Criminal Court building that injured several firefighters and others on site, according to the Office of Court Administration.

NY to Receive $635K from Target Data Breach Deal

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Retail giant Target has agreed to pay $18.5 million in a settlement with 47 states, including New York, over a 2013 consumer data breach that resulted in over 100 million pieces of credit card or personal information being stolen by hackers.

ExxonMobil world headquarters in Irving, Texas

Panel Denies ExxonMobil's Accountant Privilege Claim

By B. Colby Hamilton |

ExxonMobil's claim that Texas law protecting accountant-client privileges should be able to block a subpoena by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office took another step back Tuesday when the First Department refused to quash Schneiderman's request for documents from PriceWaterhouseCooper.

Fund for Modern Court Awards

By David Handschuh, Photographer |

The Fund for Modern Courts held its annual awards dinner on Monday, where it honored Alan Levine with the John J. McCloy Memorial Award and Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick with the Career Public Service Award.

Businessmen riding on a roller coaster

Managing Partners Frustrated by Slow Pace of Big Law Change, Survey Says

By Roy Strom |

Legal consultancy Altman Weil Inc.'s ninth annual Law Firms in Transition Survey shows that managing partners are increasingly frustrated from facing off against internal resistance to change.

How Much Do Clients Care About Law Firm Layoffs?

By Miriam Rozen |

"A smart firm would be reaching out to their clients and getting ahead of the story," said one former GC.

US Companies Are Biggest Spenders on Legal Services Globally

By Jennifer Williams-Alvarez |

Companies in the U.S. spend 166 percent more on legal services per dollar of revenue compared to companies in other parts of the world, findings from U.K.-based market research company Acritas Research Ltd. show.

The Bachelorette.

Dallas Lawyer Drops Houston Law Student and Others on Season Opener of 'The Bachelorette'

By Brenda Sapino Jeffreys |

Rachel Lindsay, a trial lawyer in Dallas who is starring on "The Bachelorette" reality TV show, gave her "first impression" rose to a chiropractor from Miami who impressed her by complimenting her in Spanish.

Geoffrey Berman of Greenberg Traurig in Florham Park, New Jersey

As Trump Eyes Berman for US Attorney, NJ GOP Officials Press for Carpenito

By Charles Toutant |

The White House is ready to nominate Greenberg Traurig lawyer Geoffrey Berman as the next U.S. attorney from New Jersey, but supporters of Alston & Bird's Craig Carpenito are making a push for their candidate, according to several people familiar with the search process.

Rolando T. Acosta

Acosta Named PJ of First Department, 9 Others Join Appellate Bench

By Rebecca Baker |

The Appellate Division bench is at capacity now that Gov. Andrew Cuomo has appointed nine state Supreme Court judges and promoted First Department Justice Rolando Acosta to fill that court's presiding justice role.

President Donald Trump being sworn in on January 20, 2017.

Trump Turmoil Tempers Law Firm Business Forecasts

By Christine Simmons |

Regardless of their political leanings, many law firm leaders were cautiously optimistic after Donald Trump's election. They hoped he might boost business—and demand for legal services—with his agenda of tax reform, looser bank regulations and infrastructure investment. But with the fledgling administration already mired in investigations, the enthusiasm is waning amid some firm leaders.

NY Lawyer Hits Fox News With More Bias Suits, Keeps Pressure on UK Deal

By Todd Cunningham |

Douglas Wigdor says he now represents 23 current and former Fox employees, including a black IT worker whose complaints led to last week's firing of host Bob Beckel.

NYC, Citibike Settle With Brain-Injured Cyclist in Run-Up to Trial

By Andrew Denney |

Just as the case was set to go to trial, New York City and Citibike have settled a negligence lawsuit against the city government and the bike-sharing service filed by a cyclist who was not wearing a helmet and who suffered brain damage in an accident.

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello perform

Strike 3 for Abbott & Costello Heirs' 'Who's on First' Copyright Dispute

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

After a swing and a miss at both the trial court and appellate level, a copyright infringement lawsuit over the use of comedy duo Bud Abbott and Lou Costello's "Who's on First" routine has struck out, with the U.S. Supreme Court declining to review the case.

Class Action Against Fishing Operator Moves to SDNY

By B. Colby Hamilton |

An investor class action case transferred into the Southern District Friday, alleging a fishing operation that produces food and supplement ingredients misled investors over multiple federal investigations over environmental law violations and whistleblower intimidation.

New York State Capitol in Albany

Assembly Minority Backs Upstate Ride Sharing

New York's Assembly minority leader, Republican Brian Kolb, says he hopes the Assembly will quickly consider legislation that will permit ride-hailing apps to begin services north of New York City in time for the busy July Fourth weekend.

On the Move

Seven firms announce new additions and Debevoise has named four to partner.

Metropolitan Black Bar Awards

By David Handschuh, Photographer |

The Metropolitan Black Bar Association celebrated "Building the Legal Diversity Pipeline" at its 33rd anniversary awards gala Friday night at Chelsea Piers.

Judge Denies NYPD's Bid to Toss Open Records Case

By Andrew Denney |

The New York City Police Department's changing excuses for not turning over an accounting of the amount of property seized from arrestees "just do not make sense," a Manhattan judge said in denying the department's motion to dismiss an open records suit.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer.

No Public Hearing Set for SCOTUS Budget, Again

By Tony Mauro |

Last year a spokeswoman said the court's budget hearing did not take place because of "a compressed Supreme Court and congressional schedule."

U.S. Supreme Court building

Supreme Court Limits Venue Shopping in Patent Litigation

By Tony Mauro |

Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for an 8-0 court in TC Heartland v. Kraft Foods Group Brands, said “a domestic corporation ‘resides’ only in its state of incorporation for purposes of the patent venue statute.”