New Jersey Pulse

  • NJ Atty Fights 'Hare-Brained' Malpractice Claims In RE Dispute

    A suspended New Jersey attorney is seeking summary judgment and sanctions for a "hare-brained" attempt by Chaitman LLP to mount a third-party complaint holding him liable for allegedly providing bad legal advice that prompted a malpractice case between Chaitman and former clients.

  • Ex-Seton Hall President Fights Bid To Toss Whistleblower Suit

    Seton Hall University's former president is fighting to keep his explosive whistleblower suit against the school alive, arguing that he should be allowed to pursue his claims in court despite terms in his severance agreement stating otherwise because Seton Hall already violated that agreement by slashing his salary.

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    Yoga Lawyer: A Way of Being In The (Legal) World

    More than a decade ago, a stressful job and a pile of physical ailments prompted attorney Cindy Pensoneau to take a deep dive into yoga. Today, she continues to work as both a lawyer and as a yoga teacher, illustrating the growing role that the ancient mind-body practice can play in improving attorney mental health.

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    GCs Help Companies Close The Gap On Mental Health Efforts

    While they wait for their companies to implement more wellness policies that reach the root causes of employees’ stress and burnout, some general counsel and chief legal officers are filling the gap to help their law teams feel more supported.

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    Here's Why This GC Went Public With Her Bipolar Diagnosis

    Kelly Rentzel, who has held several general counsel positions throughout her career, largely credits her law degree for giving her the confidence to talk publicly about her bipolar diagnosis — which is something she had contemplated for two decades before taking the initial steps that ultimately led her to a lectern.

  • Reed Smith Beats Ex-Paralegal's Sprawling Bias Suit

    A former Reed Smith LLP paralegal hasn't shown that the firm's flagging of her work performance issues and her eventual termination stemmed from age and race discrimination, a New Jersey federal judge ruled Tuesday, handing the law firm a final win in the nearly 9-year-old litigation.

  • Sills Cummis Atty Must Sit For Deposition In Malpractice Suit

    A New Jersey state court judge has directed a Sills Cummis & Gross PC attorney to soon sit for a deposition in a malpractice suit filed by the former manager of musician, producer and songwriter Nile Rodgers.

  • ABA Knocks Down 'Implausible' Data Breach Class Action

    The American Bar Association members suing the organization over a data breach have not identified any security measures the ABA failed to take, a New York federal judge said Tuesday when nixing what the organization called the members' "implausible" proposed class action.

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    NJ Attys Warn Of AI Risks To Client Confidentiality

    Despite the headline-grabbing stories of lawyers citing bogus cases after relying on generative artificial intelligence tools like ChatGPT to write briefs, New Jersey experts pointed to an even graver risk from using AI in legal work: violating client confidentiality.

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    Genova Burns Adds Labor, Bankruptcy Attys In Philly, NJ

    Genova Burns LLC expanded its offices in the Philadelphia area and New Jersey this week with the additions of attorneys specializing in labor and bankruptcy law.

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    Bressler Amery Picks New Office Heads in NY, NJ, and Ala.

    Bressler Amery & Ross PC has appointed new office heads for its locations in New York City; Birmingham, Alabama; and Florham Park, New Jersey.

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    Cole Schotz Adds Former County Financial Prosecutor In NJ

    Cole Schotz PC is bringing on a former top financial crimes prosecutor from the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office to both the litigation and white collar defense teams in the firm's Hackensack, New Jersey, office.

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    Squire Patton Taps Leader For New Insurance Disputes Group

    Squire Patton Boggs LLP has created a new practice that brings together its long-standing dispute work for insurance companies, naming a partner who represents some of the largest U.S. insurance companies to lead the new practice, the firm said Tuesday.

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    Return To Office Poses Pitfalls For Atty Mental Health

    As a therapist specialized in treating lawyers, Stacey Dougan hears a lot about law firm politics, addiction and the career's overwhelming demands. But lately, her clients have been bringing up a new source of anxiety: returning to the office.

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    Mid-Law Not Immune To Structural Mental Health Challenges

    Despite the common narrative that lawyers can trade higher pay for better well-being and work-life balance by moving to smaller firms, experts say that Mid-Law firms are generally facing the same industry pressures that contribute to long hours, stress and poor attorney mental health.

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    Ethics Probes Take Mental Toll On Solo, Small Firm Attorneys

    Facing a disciplinary complaint can take a toll on any attorney’s mental health. But for solo practitioners and small firm lawyers, who typically juggle all aspects of their business from handling client matters to administrative tasks like managing trust accounts, it can threaten to upend their lives.

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    Husch Blackwell Adds 4-Atty Litigation Team From Saul Ewing

    Four New Jersey-based Saul Ewing LLP attorneys, including the co-chair of the law firm's consumer financial services litigation team, have jumped to Husch Blackwell LLP to work in its virtual office, Husch Blackwell announced Monday.

  • Menendez Defense Wants To Probe Qatari-Tied Investment Co.

    Defense attorneys representing U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez in the government's second bribery case against the New Jersey Democrat want to depose the general counsel and chief operating officer of an entity dubbed "Qatari investment company," according to filings made in New York federal court.

  • NJ Legal Groups Fight Ban On Out-Of-State Atty Referral Fees

    The New Jersey State Bar Association and other Garden State professional legal groups are looking to reverse guidance from a New Jersey Supreme Court ethics committee prohibiting the state's certified attorneys from paying referral fees to out-of-state lawyers.

  • NJ Justices Spell Out Atty Fee Rules In Fee-Shifting Cases

    The New Jersey Supreme Court has put out rules governing fee agreements for attorneys representing clients in statutorily based fee-shifting cases, capping off years of ethical debate stemming from a case where an individual client was charged $286,000 for legal work on a discrimination lawsuit.

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    The Best Therapy For Lawyers, According To Ex-Lawyers

    Attorneys-turned-therapists say no one understands the stresses of being a lawyer like another lawyer. They also say their clients sometimes struggle at first with treatment that prioritizes feelings, mindfulness and even body awareness over the intellectualizing and rationalizing that make them successful at their jobs.

  • Connecticut Firm Seeks $500K Fee In Magnesium Class Action

    A Connecticut law firm has asked a New Jersey federal judge to approve its request for $500,000 in attorney fees and expenses for its representation in a class action over a company's allegedly deceptive advertising of a magnesium supplement.

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    How Dechert's Culture Helped Its SF Leader Forge Resilience

    When his 2-month-old daughter was hospitalized with a potentially fatal condition, Dechert partner Jonathan Stott leaned on firm mentors and colleagues for strength. Now, as managing partner of the firm's San Francisco office Stott is on a mission to pay it forward and continue fostering a supportive and resilient office community.

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    Atty Alcohol Misuse: What's Worked, What Hasn't, What's Next

    In the eight years since an ABA report revealed pervasive alcohol misuse among lawyers, the legal industry has sought to address the problem. Here is a look at what’s working, what isn’t, and how legal employers can effectively address law’s problem drinking crisis going forward.

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    Workload, Trauma, Isolation Impacting Judges' Mental Health

    Overwhelming caseloads, the secondary trauma from certain types of cases and a lack of peer support are the biggest stressors judges say they're facing, with many of them experiencing difficulty concentrating, remaining unbiased and treating litigants and lawyers with respect as a result.

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Expert Analysis

  • How Women In Law Can Advance Toward Leadership Roles Author Photo

    Female attorneys in leadership roles inspire other women to pursue similar opportunities in a male-dominated field, and for those who aspire to lead, prioritizing collaboration, inclusivity and integrity is key, says Kim Yelkin at Foley & Lardner.

  • The Case That Took Me From Prosecutor To Defense Attorney Author Photo

    Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Moira Penza, now at Wilkinson Stekloff, recalls the challenges of her first case as a civil defense attorney — a multibillion-dollar multidistrict class action against Allergan — and the lessons she learned about building rapport in the courtroom and with co-counsel.

  • The Importance Of Legal Macroeconomics Education For Attys Author Photo

    Most legal professionals lack understanding of the macroeconomic trends unique to the legal industry, like the rising cost of law school and legal services, which contributes to an unfair and inaccessible justice system, so law school courses and continuing legal education requirements in this area are essential, says Bob Glaves at the Chicago Bar Foundation.

  • What ABA Student Well-Being Standards Mean For Law Firms Author Photo

    While the American Bar Association's recent amendments to its law school accreditation standards around student well-being could have gone further, legal industry employers have much to learn from the ABA's move and the well-being movement that continues to gain traction in law schools, says David Jaffe at the American University Washington College of Law.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Do I Build Rapport In New In-House Role? Author Photo

    Tim Parilla at LinkSquares explains how new in-house lawyers can start developing relationships with colleagues both within and outside their legal departments in order to expand their networks, build their brands and carve their paths to leadership positions.

  • What Attys Should Consider Before Taking On Pro Bono Work
    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
    Author Photo

    Piper Hoffman and Will Lowrey at Animal Outlook lay out suggestions for attorneys to maximize the value of their pro bono efforts, from crafting engagement letters to balancing workloads — and they explain how these principles can foster a more rewarding engagement for both lawyers and nonprofits.

  • 7 Ways Attys Can Improve Their LinkedIn Summaries Author Photo

    Lawyers can use LinkedIn to strengthen their thought leadership position, generate new business, explore career opportunities, and better position themselves and their firms in search results by writing a well-composed, optimized summary that demonstrates their knowledge and experience, says Guy Alvarez at Good2bSocial.

  • How Law Firms And Attys Can Combat Imposter Syndrome Author Photo

    Imposter syndrome is rampant in the legal profession, especially among lawyers from underrepresented backgrounds, leading to missed opportunities and mental health issues — but firms can provide support in numerous ways, and attorneys can use therapeutic strategies to quiet their inner critic, says Helen Pamely at Rosling King.

  • The Law Firm Qualities Partners Seek In Lateral Moves Author Photo

    In 2022, partners considering lateral moves have new priorities, and firms that hope to recruit top talent will need to communicate their strategy for growth, engage on hot issues like origination credit and diversity initiatives, and tailor their integration plans toward expanding partners’ client base, says Gloria Sandrino at Lateral Link.

  • Small Steps Can Help Employers Beat Attorney Burnout Author Photo

    Lawyers are experiencing burnout on a massive, unprecedented scale due to the pandemic, but law firms and institutional players can and should make a difference by focusing on small, practical solutions that protect their attorneys’ most precious personal resource and professional commodity — time, says Chad Sarchio, president of the District of Columbia Bar.

  • The Evolving Role Of The Law Firm Legal Secretary Author Photo

    Technological shifts during the pandemic and beyond should force firms to rethink how legal secretaries can not only better support timekeepers but also participate in elevating client service, bifurcating the role into an administrative support position and a more elevated practice support role, says Lauren Chung at HBR Consulting.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Can I Ace My Upcoming Annual Review? Author Photo

    Jennifer Rakstad at White & Case highlights how associates can emphasize achievements and seek support before, during and after their annual review, despite the pandemic’s negative effects on face time with colleagues and business development opportunities.

  • How Your Law Firm's Brand Can Convey Prestige Author Photo

    In order to be perceived as prestigious by clients and potential recruits, law firms should take their branding efforts beyond designing visual identities and address six key imperatives to differentiate themselves — from identifying intangible core strengths to delivering on promises at every interaction, says Howard Breindel at DeSantis Breindel.

  • How Dynamic Project Management Can Help Law Firms Author Photo

    Law firms looking to streamline matter management should consider tools that offer both employees and clients real-time access to documents, action items, task assignee information and more, overcoming many of the limitations of project communications via email, says Stephen Weyer at Stites & Harbison.

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    Ask A Mentor: How Can I Successfully Switch Practices? Author Photo

    Associates who pivot into new practice areas may find that along with the excitement of a fresh start comes some apprehension, but certain proactive steps can help tame anxiety and ensure attorneys successfully adapt to unfamiliar subjects, novel internal processes and different client deliverables, say Susan Berson and Hassan Shaikh at Mintz.

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