Wake Up Call: Dentons Partners Reportedly ‘Forced Out’

Photo by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

• Global giant Dentons has pushed out as many as 20 or more U.S.-based partners since January, after the firm missed its 2016 budget targets, but the 7,600-lawyer firm says it is still adding attorneys. (Am Law Daily)

• Only a week after being sworn in to the U.S. Supreme Court, Justice Neil Gorsuch took the bench next to Justice Sonia Sotomayor to hear arguments in three cases Monday, with another four scheduled to follow later in the week. He waited only 10 minutes before unleashing a barrage of questions and suggesting both sides in the case were misreading a key federal law. (Bloomberg via BLB) (Bloomberg via BLB)

• Star plaintiffs lawyer Mark Lanier is hosting an April 20 fundraiser in his Houston home for Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and several Democratic-leaning plaintiff lawyers will also be attending. The idea is to try to persuade Graham to vote against the tort reform push now gathering momentum in Washington, D.C. (Texas Lawyer)

• “As an in-house lawyer, the best you can get is when you’re integrated with the business team and you’re part of the team making it happen,” says Louise Pentland, PayPal’s top lawyer. Pentland talked recently to BLB about her work to bring PayPal’s 200-strong legal team into the thick of business decisions and her views on the role of the chief legal officer. She also talked about diversity and inclusion and an in-house pro bono program she created. (BLB)

• In what looks to be a fight to save his career at Fox News, Bill O’Reilly is denying a sexual-harassment allegation raised by a radio personality and author named Wendy Walsh. Law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, whose investigation of allegations against Fox News chairman Roger Ailes led to his exit last summer, is investigating the claims against O’Reilly. (Washington Post)

• The investment firm Silver Lake, known for leading major private equity takeover deals involving such companies as Dell Inc. and Ultimate Fighting Championship, is poised to announce a new $15 billion fund dedicated to technology deals. (New York Times DealBook)




• Chadbourne & Parke’s partners can vote this week to eject Kerry Campbell, the woman who hit the firm with a $100 million gender discrimination suit, a Manhattan federal judge ruled. Campbell and two other women in the suit had sought to block the vote. (BLB)

• The woman whose sexual harassment allegations led to the forced exit of former UC-Berkeley law school dean Sujit Choudhry called the school’s settlement with him, in which he keeps tenure until 2018 and tens of thousands of dollars in funding, an “insult” to victims of harassment. (L.A. Times)

• Women lawyers at Big Law firms tend to pool in niche practice groups such as education, family law, health care, immigration and labor and employment, while practices such as banking, corporate and litigation get the lowest number of female lawyers, a new ALM Intelligence study says. (Am Law Daily)




Legal Market

• Wells Fargo & Co. agreed to pay $50 million to settle a class-action lawsuit by almost 300,000 homeowners who claimed they paid inflated fees for a broker service required on delinquent mortgages at risk of foreclosure. (Bloomberg via BLB) BLB’s Gabe Friedman discussed a Shearman & Sterling report that found that the bank’s legal department focused too much on cost-containment and overlooked its sham account scandal. (Bloomberg Radio) A former Wells Fargo executive in New Jersey seeks reinstatement and damages in her lawsuit alleging that the bank fired her for refusing to participate in an account scam. (NJ.com)

• The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is suing an Ohio law firm that specializes in debt collection for allegedly using overly aggressive tactics, the second time this year it has hit a law firm with such a complaint. (National Law Journal)

• The seven-lawyer Washington, D.C., practice of New Jersey firm Porzio Bromberg & Newman expanded the office’s average revenue per lawyer by 35 percent in 2016 to $882,000. And other news from Washington. (National Law Journal)

• The U.K.’s financial sanctions enforcer has new legal authority to impose fines, toughen prison sentences and reward companies that voluntarily disclose suspected violations, changes that resemble U.S. enforcement. (Bloomberg)

• European and U.K. regulators risk inadvertently hastening the loss of some banking operations from London by pushing lenders to make detailed plans for the worst-case Brexit scenario, according to people familiar with the matter. (Bloomberg)

• In branding a law firm, art can communicate a firm’s softer side, says Ken Carbone, cofounder of Carbone Smolan Agency. Carbone says his clients from international law firms are “profoundly intuitive,” with great senses of humor, and they surround themselves with beautiful art. (Huffington Post)




President Trump’s First 100 Days

• President Donald Trump will take aim at information-technology outsourcing companies Tuesday when he orders a review of H-1B visa programs to favor more skilled and highly paid applicants. (Bloomberg)



Happening in SCOTUS and Other Courts

• Arkansas officials said the government still plans to conduct a double execution later this week, after the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling that spared an inmate minutes before his death warrant was set to expire. (Associated Press)


Laterals, Moves, Law Firm Work

• One of the sports world’s top dealmakers, Irwin Raij, said O’Melveny & Myers’ “broader vision” for its sports practice induced him to join the firm as a partner and co-chairman of its sports industry group. He leaves Foley & Lardner, where he had a similar role, after 15 years. (Am Law Daily)

• The plaintiffs firm representing Kelly Campbell against Chadbourne & Parke, Sanford Heisler, said federal Judge Kevin Sharp is joining the firm as a name partner and will play a critical role in the case. Sharp is opening the firm’s fifth office, in Nashville, Tennessee, it said. (New York Law Journal)



• Facebook said it is working to improve processes for flagging content after it took almost two hours to take down a video that appeared to show a murder in Cleveland, Ohio. (Financial Times)

• Electronic discovery could play a key role in several states’ lawsuits to block Trump’s travel ban. (Legaltech News)

• A Florida-based jury consultant is testing a facial recognition application aimed at helping trial attorneys analyze all 12 jurors’ emotional reactions in high-stakes cases. (Legaltech News)

• The Electronic Frontier Foundation has asked a San Francisco federal court to rule that the First Amendment protects its “Stupid Patent” column from an Australian court’s order to take down a column objected to by a patent holder. (The Recorder)



Legal Education

• Don’t go to law school because you love rules, and other reasons why the obnoxious character Marnie Michaels in the HBO TV series “Girlies” should not go to law school. (Above The Law)

• How to defer law school admission. (U.S. News & World Report)



• A lawyer representing InfoWars host Alex Jones in his custody battle with his ex-wife argued in a pretrial hearing that Jones’ on-air behavior should not be used to judge his qualifications as a father, because “He’s playing a character.” (Daily Beast)

Compiled by Rick Mitchell and edited by Casey Sullivan.