Table of Contents

Compounding the Abuse: Lawyers for the Catholic Church in the Ellis Case

Vivien Holmes, Australian National University - ANU College of Law

The Preclusion of Nonlawyer Ownership of Law Firms: Protecting the Interest of Clients or Protecting the Interest of Lawyers?

Louise L. Hill, Widener University School of Law

Who's Afraid of Wikileaks? Missed Opportunities in Political Science Research

Gabriel J. Michael, Yale University, George Washington University

E-Mail Netiquette for Lawyers

Gerald Lebovits, Columbia University - Law School, Fordham University School of Law, New York University School of Law, New York Law School

Life in the Law-Thick World: The Legal Resource Landscape for Ordinary Americans

Gillian K. Hadfield, USC Law School and Department of Economics
Jamie Heine, Independent


"Compounding the Abuse: Lawyers for the Catholic Church in the Ellis Case" Free Download
Legal Ethics Journal, Hart Publishing, Oxford, Forthcoming

VIVIEN HOLMES, Australian National University - ANU College of Law

This short article outlines some of the issues of legal ethics raised in hearings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. In particular, the article examines the actions of lawyers for the Catholic Church in one of the Commission’s case studies: the John Ellis case. While the Commission has yet to report its findings from this case study, the material already in the public domain tells a story of a church ill-served by its legal advisors.

"The Preclusion of Nonlawyer Ownership of Law Firms: Protecting the Interest of Clients or Protecting the Interest of Lawyers?" Free Download
Capital University Law Review, Vol. 42, 2014
Widener Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 15-01

LOUISE L. HILL, Widener University School of Law

For the third time in as many decades, lawyers in the United States have sullied the notion of nonlawyer ownership of law firms. The most recent examination of alternative law practice structures was undertaken by Ethics 20/20, a Commission created by the American Bar Association [ABA] to conduct a plenary assessment of the ABA Rules of Professional Conduct and related ABA policies. A Working Group was formed which considered whether clients could be better served if law practice entities were restructured. To this end, issues were formulated and different law practice configurations were proposed, about which the public and members of the legal profession were invited to comment. Receiving mixed reviews, Ethics 20/20 decided not to put the matter of nonlawyer ownership of law practices before the ABA House of Delegates in 2012 and 2013, when revisions to the ABA Rules were considered.

Precluding nonlawyer ownership of law firms has been the majority rule in the United States for almost a century. With the exception of the District of Columbia, the states do not allow nonlawyers to own interests in law firms. However, this is not the case in the rest of the world. A number of countries allow nonlawyer ownership of legal practice entities, as well as other practice formulations where legal services can be a component part of another business. Many feel formulations such as these better serve the public and make legal practitioners more competitive, especially in the international marketplace. All this notwithstanding, United States critics of nonlawyer ownership claim that such formulations are unnecessary, will threaten the core values of the profession, and will undermine the profession by leading to loss of self-regulation. Looking at the experience of the District of Columbia, as well as countries such as Australia, Canada and England & Wales, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

An examination of the opposition to nonlawyer ownership of legal practices reveals that the primary focus in the United States has been directed toward the well being of the legal profession, rather than toward the well being of the community at large. Those who seek to keep the status quo don’t even want to have the discussion. This reluctance comes from lawyers wanting to protect themselves rather than concern for clients and the public.

"Who's Afraid of Wikileaks? Missed Opportunities in Political Science Research" Free Download
Review of Policy Research, Forthcoming

GABRIEL J. MICHAEL, Yale University, George Washington University

Leaked information, such as WikiLeaks' Cablegate, constitutes a unique and valuable data source for researchers interested in a wide variety of policy-oriented topics. Yet political scientists have avoided using leaked information in their research. This article argues that we can and should use leaked information as a data source in scholarly research. First, I consider the methodological, ethical, and legal challenges related to the use of leaked information in research, concluding that none of these present serious obstacles. Second, I show how political scientists can use leaked information to generate novel and unique insights about political phenomena using a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods. Specifically, I demonstrate how leaked documents reveal important details about the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations, and how leaked diplomatic cables highlight a significant disparity between the U.S. government's public attitude towards traditional knowledge and its private behavior.

"E-Mail Netiquette for Lawyers" Free Download
6 Senior Lawyer 11, Fall 2014

GERALD LEBOVITS, Columbia University - Law School, Fordham University School of Law, New York University School of Law, New York Law School

This article offers practical advice on how lawyers can and should email.

Electronic mail, called “e-mail? and often spelled “email,? has electrifi ed the practice of law. E-mail is invaluable. It’s “cheaper and faster than a letter, less intrusive than a phone call, [and] less hassle than a fax.? It eliminates location and time-zone obstacles. E-mail isn’t perfect. Attorneys are besieged by the volume of e-mails. It’s hard to sort through the mix of solicitations, SPAM, correspondence, and critical, timesensitive information. One result: “people are either annoyed by the intrusion [of e-mail] or are overwhelmed by the sheer number of e-mails they receive each day.? E-mail also leads to misunderstandings. Despite its problems, e-mail is an essential tool. Attorneys must make the most of it — so long as the attorney follows this good advice: “Think. Pause. Think again. Then send.? This column reviews e-mail etiquette, e-mail tips, and e-mail’s implications for the legal profession. Good protocol makes e-mail fit to print.

"Life in the Law-Thick World: The Legal Resource Landscape for Ordinary Americans" Free Download
USC CLASS Research Papers Series No. CLASS15-2
USC Law Legal Studies Paper No. 15-2

GILLIAN K. HADFIELD, USC Law School and Department of Economics
JAMIE HEINE, Independent

Most advanced democracies are thick with law and regulation, rules that structure almost all social and economic relationships. Yet ordinary Americans, unlike their peers in other advanced systems, face this law-thick landscape with relatively few legal resources at their disposal. In this chapter, an updated version of Hadfield Higher Demand Lower Supply? A Comparative Assessment of the Legal Resource Landscape for Ordinary Americans (2009), we document what little data exists on the performance of legal markets for non-corporate clients in the U.S. Our results suggest that while the U.S. has nearly twice as many lawyers as comparable countries on a per capita basis, Americans in fact confront the legal problems of daily life - housing, family, employment, finances, health - with relatively little access to affordable legal help. We begin with a ‘macro’ view, comparing the resources at an aggregate level that are devoted to the legal system in the U.S. as compared to other countries. We find that the U.S. operates with fewer public dollars, judges and even lawyers on a per case basis than other advanced countries. We then consider ‘micro’ data, specifically data on legal needs and use of legal resources, comparing the intensity of legal need and access to legal assistance across countries. Here too we find that Americans experience comparable rates of legal problems but both give up on those problems or manage them without legal help at higher rates than in other advanced countries. The paper concludes with a discussion of how the distinctively restrictive U.S. approach to regulating the legal profession can account for the diminished access to legal help experienced by Americans as compared to those in countries with more open legal markets such as the U.K. and the Netherlands.


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Legal Ethics & Professional Responsibility eJournal

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