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Best of the Bar Lets You Put Spotlight on Deserving Colleagues

You know some really terrific attorneys. You should nominate at least one of them for the third annual San Diego Business Journal’s Best of the Bar. This annual recognition of local legal talent is a showcase for San Diego’s top attorneys, who are nominated and vetted by their peers. It is a great resource for San Diegans who need legal services, and a resume booster for anyone nominated. It will only take you a few minutes to nominate at the Business Journal website.

EVoucher System Simplifies Process in Federal Court

The U.S. Supreme Court, some quip, exists to reverse the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Not even the land’s highest court would grant cert to reverse this item: Court staff from the circuit have received national recognition for their work in developing an electronic voucher-processing system that is improving how the federal judiciary manages spending for indigent defense.

Latham & Watkins Team Represents BioMed In $8B Acquisition

Latham & Watkins advised local real estate powerhouse BioMed Realty Trust Inc. in its acquisition by Blackstone Group for a handsome $8 billion. Completion of the transaction, which is expected to occur in the first quarter of 2016, is contingent upon customary closing conditions, including the approval of BioMed Realty’s stockholders.

Do Your Due Diligence, and Select the Best for Bar Directors

The San Diego County Bar Association has announced its 2016 board of directors candidates. They are Stephanie Chow, Matthew Deen, Srinivas Hanumadass, Robert Knaier, James Koerber, Jan Maiden (South Bay), Anna Romanskaya, Gary Rudolph, and Johanna Schiavoni.

Restoring Court Resources Must Be on All Our Dockets

I have heard attorneys say they hoped the local judiciary would be forced by the state budget cuts to grant more warranted summary judgments, with leave to amend, rather than “indicate” a likely outcome.

Attorney’s Command in the Courtroom Earns Recognition

Vincent J. Bartolotta Jr., founding partner of Thorsnes Bartolotta McGuire was recently inducted into the International Academy of Trial Lawyers (IATL) at its midyear meeting held last month.

Fentin’s Family Law Credentials Served Her Well in Leadership Role

Hildy L. Fentin has successfully completed her year as president of the Southern California Chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. Fentin, a principal of Hildy L. Fentin Attorney at Law, is one of four San Diego attorneys on the board.

New Attorney Additions and a New Firm Are Part of S.D. Scene

Christina Semmer has joined Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP as an associate. Semmer joins the firm’s employment and business practice groups. Her business litigation practice includes representing companies in breach of contract, business tort, and other complex litigation matters.

Volunteers Needed For Annual Veterans Stand Down

A lot of civic-minded and patriotic local attorneys have participated in Stand Down over the years.

Lights, Camera, Legal Actions: Law & Comics Goes Hollywood

The San Diego Law Library is celebrating the sixth year of its popular Lindley Law & Comics. This year the theme is “Law & Comics Goes to Hollywood.”

Campaign to Share the Profession’s Good Side With Community

The San Diego County Bar Association wants us to be civil.

Bill Simon Adds Finance Arrow to His Sizable Quiver

Bill Simon is an attorney who has always looked to provide clients with more than billable time.

Attorney’s Career Accomplishments, Community Role Applauded

Richard A. Shaw, a partner at Higgs Fletcher & Mack, has been awarded the San Diego County Bar Association’s 2015 “Outstanding Attorney of the Year” Service Award. A nationally recognized lawyer in taxation, corporate and estate planning, Shaw was selected as an exemplary attorney for his contributions to the legal profession and service to the San Diego community.

Former Judge Puts His Skills to Use in Dispute Resolution

Retired San Diego Superior Court Judge Thomas Nugent has opened a private dispute resolution practice in downtown San Diego.

Firm’s Partner Gets a Title That Honors Her Civic Achievements

Vickie Turner, a partner at Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP, has been named “Woman of the Year for the California 79th Assembly District.” Turner lives in the district, which includes Chula Vista, San Diego, La Mesa, Lemon Grove and National City.

Patent Cases, Big Acquisition Give Firm a Chance to Shine

Knobbe Martens’ Boris Zelkind, David Kujawa, Adam Powell, and Peter Law were part of the firm’s team that successfully represented I-Flow LLC and its parent company, Kimberly-Clark, in a patent infringement trial against Progressive Medical.

Bar Foundation Giving Aims To Promote Justice for All

The Business of Law Column

Brian Funk is president-elect of the San Diego County Bar Foundation and would like to remind you that the foundation supports access to justice, in a big way.

Hire Is Good Guide to Have in the Real-Estate Deals Territory

Amelia Sanchez has joined Crosbie Gliner Schiffman Southard & Swanson LLP (CGS3) as senior counsel. Sanchez brings to CGS3 more than 18 years of commercial real estate and transactional experience representing national, regional and local companies.

Higgs Fletcher & Mack Promotes Three to its Partner Ranks

Lots of news at Higgs Fletcher & Mack. Loren Freestone, AnneElise Goetz and Jason Ross were recently promoted to partner. Their promotions bring the organization’s partner total to 49.

Law Firms Bring on Board Some Key Additions to Their Teams

Nadia Ruyle has joined the impressively growing Shustak & Partners law firm as an associate.

Firms Ready to Bring Expertise, Energy to Serving Clients

Brenda Kasper and Lisa Frank, former partners at Paul, Plevin, Sullivan & Connaughton LLP, recently launched Kasper & Frank LLP. Kasper & Frank will specialize in providing practical, creative and cost-effective employment law advice and counseling to California and multistate employers.

Brandi Gill Brings Holiday Cheer to Veterans and Their Families

Veterans Village of San Diego is nationally recognized as an organization that successfully serves homeless veterans.

Huver Steps Up to Lead Role of San Diego County Bar

Richard Huver will be sworn in as the San Diego County Bar Association’s president for 2015 on Dec. 5, at the organization’s annual “Stepping Up to the Bar,” holiday celebration.

Budget Cuts Will Create Crowd Scene at Downtown Court

You have read in this column about the financial pinch Gov. Brown and the Legislature have put on the San Diego Superior Court.

How Is Your Firm Handling the Post-Recession Paradigm?

This was supposed to be the year where mid- to regional law firms were supposed to find some financial stability, some profit and loss breathing room, after laboring through five or six years of merger and acquisition and real estate drought.

Impressive Slate for the Upcoming Bar Association Elections

It’s time to vote for next year’s leadership of the San Diego County Bar Association, and you should do it. Mostly, because you’ll be able to say you did at the SDCBA’s excellent Holiday Party, where new leadership is sworn in, but there are probably other good reasons as well.

SDBJ General Counsel Awards Nominees Are an Impressive Bunch

I just completed my judging form of the San Diego Business Journal’s General Counsel of the Year Awards.

Higgs Fletcher & Mack Celebrates 75 Years in World-Class Style

Higgs Fletcher & Mack LLP is 75 years young this year and last week held a fine reception to recognize that in its newly remodeled, 26th floor offices downtown.

Merger Results in Some New Career Paths For Attorneys

Solomon Ward Seidenwurm & Smith LLP recently announced that Katherine M. Hoffman has joined the firm as partner.

Procopio Partner Elected to Lead San Diego Chapter of ACG

Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP partner Dennis Doucette was elected board president of the Association for Corporate Growth. Doucette, who leads Procopio’s corporate and securities practice group, has been on the ACG’s board for five years and has chaired its programs committee for the past 18 months.

Attorney Pairs His Legal Career With Other Tasteful Pursuits

San Diego attorneys are really interesting people with varied interests and pursuits, but Harold Small, you might say, takes the cake. He has been elected bailli délégué — or just president to us commoners — of the Bailliage des Etats-Unis of the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, the world’s oldest and largest international food and wine society.

Procopio’s New Associates Bring Diverse Talents to Its Team

Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP has hired three new associates: Trent Andrews, Natalie Mueller and Juan Pablo Zaragoza. Andrews’ practice encompasses business and corporate matters, including mergers, acquisitions, venture capital and private equity financings, securities matters, leveraged buyouts, corporate governance and other complex business transactions.

Awarding of Attorneys’ Fees in Patent Case May Mark Major Shift

Leventhal Law earned another significant legal victory on behalf of In what some have called one of the most closely watched patent cases in the technology world, a federal judge granted FindTheBest’s request for attorneys’ fees in a patent lawsuit brought by Lumen View Technology LLC.

Law Leaders Lab Sees Need to Change Business Model, Practice

Law Leaders Lab opened its doors this month. It’s a new firm with a goal of helping lawyers, law firms and legal services providers develop strategies to grow their businesses and communicate value to clients.

Lawyer’s Outstanding Performance Secures Her Place as Partner

Tyson & Mendes made Kristi Blackwell the firm’s first partner. Blackwell is a member of the general liability, professional liability and business litigation team. She was second chair in a jury trial involving professional negligence and fraud against an insurance broker.

Ex-Federal Prosecutor to Chair Litigation at Latham & Watkins

Jake Ryan has been appointed to chair the litigation department at Latham & Watkins LLP’s San Diego office. Ryan, 46, is a trial lawyer who focuses on intellectual property litigation, white-collar criminal defense, government investigations and other complex business litigation.

Bar Center at 401 Is a Home Base and a Home Run for Association

The San Diego County Bar Association has been awarded the American Society of Association Executives’ top award in new product or service launch category.

Firm Gets More Financial Prowess With Addition of 2 Lawyers

Mikel Bistrow and Christopher Celentino, local high-profile bankruptcy and transactional finance lawyers, have joined Ballard Spahr as partners. Bistrow and Celentino have extensive experience in finance and insolvency matters and are accomplished in business reorganizations and financial transactions.

Sheppard Mullin’s 10 New Lawyers Have Something in Common

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP pulled off one of San Diego legal community’s largest coups to date, enticing 10 top lawyers from McKenna Long Aldridge LLP to its ranks.

New Firm Reflects the Changing Dynamics of the Legal Scene

The Business of Law Column

Seltzer Caplan McMahon Vitek has lost three of its rising stars to the growing trend of large-firm lawyers starting their own firms.

Honored Guest Shattered a Big Glass Ceiling With Her Gavel

The Lawyers Club of San Diego has landed Sandra Day O’Connor, retired associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, for its 2014 annual dinner May 8. As the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court, O’Connor is the perfect selection. She — more than most others — raised the bar for women in the legal profession. She also was one of the first high-profile legal leaders to help break the mold that women couldn’t be conservative or practice effectively beyond family law. About 500 lawyers, judges and other friends of Lawyers Club usually attend. You could sponsor.

Businessman Creates a Video to Challenge Litigation Tactics

The Business of Law Column

Dan Shea works hard for the good of San Diego and the country. While he’s not a lawyer, he has created a video that challenges some of the rules of evidence — and litigation tactics — that our court system allows.

Lawyer Has the Mettle to Help Bring the Olympics to San Diego

Bill Earley is leaving McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP to run the day-to-day operations of the San Diego 2024 Olympics Exploratory Committee as its president. This is a bold and brilliant move by a terrific employment attorney.

Lawsuit Ruling Suggests USPTO Reform Needed

The Business of Law, represented by San Diego-based Leventhal Law, won a patent dispute in a federal court in New York. The decision in favor of FindTheBest sent a message that reform is required at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office — at least that’s how it read to me.

Jon Williams Is New San Diego County Bar Association President

The Business of Law

Jon Williams was sworn in as president of the San Diego County Bar Association during the organization’s annual holiday event on Dec. 6. Williams, a partner at Boudreau Williams LLP, specializes in civil appeals and writs in state and federal court.

Firm Names New Managing Partner; Another Expands to Texas

The Business of Law Column

Hecht Solberg Robinson Goldberg & Bagley LLP recently named Michael Maher managing partner. Maher succeeds Darryl Solberg, who has served in that capacity since 1997. Solberg remains an active partner in the firm and is looking forward to focusing solely on practicing law and client relationships.

Adventurous Lawyers Can Be a Pretty Cool Crowd to Run With

The Business of Law Columng

Lawyers are people, too — often very cool people. Here’s proof. Jana Beck, a lawyer at Gerson Law Firm APC, completed the 2013 New York Marathon.

U.S. Court of Appeals Upholds Patent Case for Sheppard Mullin

The Business of Law Column

Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP lawyers Steve Korniczky, Martin Bader, Matthew Mueller and Gray Buccigross earned another big win for client HTC Corp.

Evans Keane Taps Local Talent For Its New Office in Carlsbad

The Business of Law Column

Madeline Cahill and Larry Campitiello have joined Evans Keane LLP, a Boise, Idaho-based business law firm that recently opened an office in Carlsbad

San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program Honors Local Pro Bono Work

Law Column

The San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program held its annual Justice for All celebration recently, and it was cool. Really. If you’ve attended in prior years, you remember it was held at the Museum of Man, where there is no air conditioning.

General Counsel Awards Will Honor Some Sterling Efforts

The Business of Law

I just finished judging the 57 nominees for the San Diego Business Journal’s General Counsel Awards event. These nominees are impressive and work with many San Diego law firms. There are big companies — such as Petco, AMN Healthcare, the Padres, TaylorMade and General Dynamics NASSCO — and lots more of various sizes.

Legal Community to Honor Local Attorneys at SDBJ Event

The Business of Law

You and the rest of the legal community have nominated 57 in-house lawyers for special recognition. It’s impressive that San Diego has so many exceptional corporate counselors, and you’re invited to get to know them at a special San Diego Business Journal event next month.

Gordon & Rees Hosts Students and Families at the Monarch School

The Business of Law

About 20 Gordon & Rees associates hosted “Family Night” at the Monarch School, a school dedicated to serving K-12 students impacted by homelessness, earlier this month. The lawyers and their families delivered, set up and served dinner at the school, which is a few blocks from the law firm’s downtown office. About 150 students and their parents attended.

Group Gives Thanks, Praise to Attorneys for Pro Bono Work

The Business of Law Column

The San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program is putting on its annual Justice for All Celebration Sept. 19. It’s a fun event, and you should be there.

Higgs Fletcher Partner Receives Prestigious Award for Principles

The Business of Law

Susan Hack, partner at Higgs Fletcher & Mack LLP, was presented with the prestigious Daniel T. Broderick III Award at the 29th Annual Red Boudreau Trial Lawyers’ Celebration last Friday. The award is given to a lawyer in private practice with a substantial body of civil litigation experience, who epitomizes the highest principles of civility, integrity and professionalism. Hack joined Higgs in 1989 and became a partner in 1996.

Report Finds Funding Cuts Are Taking a Toll on Justice System

The Business of Law

The San Diego County Bar Association has released a report on the State of the Judiciary in San Diego County, which shows the first ever snapshot of the current state of San Diego’s courts and urges the Legislature to reinvest in the judicial branch. The California courts budget has been cut a lot more than other agencies. (It only hurts lawyers, right?) The budget cuts have led to court closures, staff layoffs and furloughs, and case backlogs, adversely impacting the ability for individuals and businesses to resolve their legal disputes in a timely manner, which hurts us all.

Higgs’ Attorneys Do Good Work On Stage and in the Community

The Business of Law

John Morrell is a terrific attorney, and has done a great job of managing Higgs Fletcher & Mack to be one of San Diego’s largest locally focused law firms. He’s also pretty good on his feet. Earlier this month at Rotary Club 33’s Annual Heilbron Awards, the mistress of ceremonies was introducing Morrell and his firm as the sponsors. “John, of course, is from McKenna Long Aldridge.” The crowd stirred, and the host corrected the mistake. Morrell got to the podium and said, “Actually, I’m from Luce Forward.” The crowd loved it.

Opponent Hopes to Unseat Incumbent Dumanis in DA’s Race

The Business of Law

Robert Brewer is running for district attorney against the current officeholder Bonnie Dumanis. The Jones Day partner told a crowd at Cheryl Kendrick’s beautiful home in Point Loma, that he wants to improve the morale of the DA’s office and regain the respect local law enforcement organizations once had for the office.

This ‘Fashionable Cause’ Can Help Change People’s Lives

The Business of Law Column

Pettit Kohn Ingrassia & Lutz, the San Diego Paralegal Association, and the Filipino American Lawyers of San Diego are working together again this year on the Women and Men’s Suit Drive.

Procopio Partner, Tax Attorney for Past 37 Years Retires

The Business of Law Column

If you’ve been a tax attorney for 40 years, and decide to take down the shingle, you deserve to be the lead item in a law column. Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP said goodbye to George L. Damoose recently.

Latham & Watkins Assists as Ambrx Pursues Cancer Research

The Business of Law Column

This is a pretty cool assignment, and it demonstrates that lawyers help society and help save lives. Latham & Watkins recently announced it is advising Ambrx Inc., in its collaboration with Japan’s Astellas Pharma Inc.

Legal Community’s Stand-Ups Put Their Comedy to Work for a Cause

The Business of Law Column

Ken Turek won the annual Lawyers Are Funny (LAF-Off) competition a couple of weeks ago. Turek, of the firm Endeman, Lincoln, Turek & Heater LLP, deserved to win. He acknowledged John Gomez should have won last year’s competition, and then cleverly ripped Gomez + Iagmin and its advertising. It was good fun, for a good cause. LAF-Off is the primary fundraising event for the San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program, a nonprofit organization that provides free civil legal services to thousands of disadvantaged clients every year.

Tease photo

LAF-Off Lets Lawyers Deliver Their Best Punch Lines

Lawyers must hide their sense of humor. It’s part of the job, and arguably the most important component of getting a decent hourly rate. But not on the evening of March 21. San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program Inc. (SDVLP), a nonprofit organization that provides free civil legal services to thousands of disadvantaged clients every year, will hold its seventh annual LAF-Off (Lawyers Are Funny) event on that night at the House of Blues in downtown San Diego.

Witkin Award Puts Spotlight On Distinguished Leaders

The Business of Law Column

The San Diego County Law Library Justice Foundation will once again hold the Bernard E. Witkin, Esq. Award ceremony March 7 at the Admiral Kidd Catering and Conference Center. The annual awards recognize distinguished service by members of the San Diego legal community.

Efforts at Empowerment Earn a Place in Women’s Hall of Fame

Betty Evans Boone will be inducted into the San Diego County Women’s Hall of Fame on March 16. Boone is being recognized in the category of “Empowerer of Women and Girls” for her trailblazing efforts in her own legal career, and her work in the community on behalf of Lawyers Club, which works to advance the status of women in law and society.

Ogletree Deakins Arrives With Local Litigator at Helm

Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. is opening a San Diego office.

Cooley’s Defense for Websense Makes Sense to Delaware Jury

This is cool, or Cooley. Cooley LLP attorneys had a big Intellectual Property win last month for client Websense Inc., a provider of integrated web, data, and email security solutions.

Students Draw Life Lessons From Law Firm’s ‘Figaro’ Excursion

You already know that SullivanHill Lewin Rez & Engel has partnered with Washington Elementary School to provide fourth- and fifth-graders an inside view of the legal profession.

Incoming Bar Association President Brings Hispanic Perspective

The San Diego County Bar Association is set to install Marcella McLaughlin as its 2013 president Dec. 7.

Procopio’s Hires Bring More Talent to Its Team

Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP is the largest local law firm and growing. Six attorneys joined its San Diego and Del Mar Heights offices.

Hearty Defense Wins One for Team San Diego

A big win for a local Fish & Richardson team. San Diego-based Volcano Corp. was represented by Fish in a patent trial regarding medical device technology used to diagnose heart problems.

Firms Hire, and Procopio Fires Up Its Startup LaunchPad

LaunchPad has its first potential liftoff. Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP recently welcomed Endopodium into its Del Mar Heights startup business incubator, which is named LaunchPad.

New Associate’s Strong Suit is Civil Litigation Knowledge

Fisher & Phillips LLP has hired Jonathan Liu as a new San Diego associate. Liu brings extensive knowledge in civil litigation having worked on cases involving employment discrimination, breach of contract, defamation and general negligence.

San Diego Partner Takes Firm Reins at Littler Mendelson

Littler Mendelson P.C., the world’s largest employment and labor law firm representing management, announced last month that San Diego partner Jeremy Roth will become co-president and co-managing director of the firm.

Superior Court Is Being Shaped by the State’s Budget Ax

If you are a litigator or even in a firm that does any respectable amount of litigation, the world has changed. San Diego Superior Court Presiding Judge Robert Trentacosta announced several dramatic reductions in court services to comply with reduced state funding of courts.

Game Day! Nonprofit Clients to See Chargers; Law Firm Pays Tab

Ten kids who might not otherwise be able to do so, will be cheering on the Chargers this fall, thanks to The Gomez Law Firm

From Alumni Post, He Can Get The Red and Black Some Green

McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP partner William (Bill) T. Earley has been elected president of the San Diego State University Alumni Association.

The Roberts Court Makes a Big Decision … No, Not That One

The most interesting thing about last month’s United States Supreme Court rulings was not that ObamaCare was upheld, but the establishment of the “John Roberts” Court, according to Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the UC Irvine School of Law.

Cooley’s Cross Knocks Government Case Out of the Park

Professional baseball pitcher Roger Clemens is free, at least in part due to good legal work done in San Diego.

Attorneys Guide Refugee on Final Steps of Asylum Journey

Helen Hailu Berhe was granted asylum in San Diego last month, avoiding deportation to Africa to face jail and possibly death for being a Pentecostal Christian.

Casey Gerry Attorneys Huddle on NFL Head Injury Litigation

Casey Gerry Schenk Francavilla Blatt & Penfield LLP has been appointed by U.S. District Judge Anita Brody to a committee overseeing litigation against the National Football League alleging that multiple concussions can lead to long-term brain injuries

Efforts Bring Magic Night to Hundreds of Special Students

Going to prom is a rite of passage for high school students, even those who turn out to be lawyers.

Talcott to Lead Much-Needed Legal Administrators Group

Things would not run smoothly in a law firm without paralegals, legal assistants and, yes, legal administrators. So we need them, and they need an association where they can share their frustrations revolving around working with us.

For Some, Green Means More Than Billable Hours

As a contemporary philosopher once said, “It’s not easy being green.

San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program Scores Hit With Laf-Off

Laf-Off was funny, and it was fun. Robert Rose of Sheppard Mullin was the winner according to the judges, but John Gomez of the Gomez Firm was the crowd favorite.

Partner’s Energy Expertise Tapped to Support Special Districts

Sophie A. Akins, a partner at Best Best & Krieger LLP, has been appointed to the Legislative Committee for the California Special Districts Association.

Most Guests Have a Ball at ACC’s Black and White Gala

The Association of Corporate Counsel’s annual Black and White Ball was, well, a ball for most of us.

Team of Local Law Students Beats Rivals at Baseball Arbitration

The Thomas Jefferson School of Law’s student team took second at the Fifth Annual Tulane National Baseball Arbitration Competition in New Orleans recently, beating 39 other teams from prominent law schools across the nation, including Harvard, University of Arizona, NYU, Notre Dame, Michigan, Marquette, Columbia, Chicago-Kent, Arizona State, St. John’s, Villanova, University of Pennsylvania, Southern Methodist University and the University of San Diego.

Prater to Lead BB&K; Luce Partners Find New Home at Procopio

Best Best & Krieger LLP has appointed Arlene Prater office managing partner for the San Diego office.

Baker & McKenzie Is Rumored to Be Closing Its San Diego Office

Baker & McKenzie is closing its San Diego office in February, or at least that’s the rumor. Colin H. Murray, the firm’s managing partner, said he had no comment on the rumor.

A Termination Decision Can Indeed Hinge on Appearances

Delivering bad news to clients is never easy, but David Monks from Fisher & Phillips LLP has put together a way to tell potential wrongful termination clients — and more importantly human resource professionals who might be asked about a particular hire or promotion — that it is acceptable to discriminate against potential and current employees based on how they appear.

Count on Reductions, Consolidations, Innovations at Law Firms

The year 2012 will be one of change in the legal community. As another challenging year closed last week, larger firms were reconciling billings that didn’t match overhead. So 2012 promises more reductions, consolidations and new, innovative divisions that can gain market share at more affordable billing rates.

County Bar Association Swears in New President, Directors

Marvin Mizell was sworn in as the new president of the San Diego County Bar Association by Judge Joe Littlejohn at the Association’s annual Holiday Party, Dec. 2.

More Couples Are Walking Down the Aisle With Pre-nups in Hand

Thanksgiving with the in-laws not go as you expected, or perhaps exactly as you expected? Are you wishing you had a pre-nup so you don’t end up a financial turkey?

Worst Is Over for Slow Bank Legal Work, But Not Bank Regulation

Attorneys do not predict the future, but we are good at submitting evidence for your consideration, which might aid you in seeing what’s to come.

Local Judges Do Their Best to Ensure Justice Still Available to All

We’re lucky to have a lot of good judges in San Diego County Superior Court. Department 69 has one of the best. Judge Jeffrey Barton not only works hard during the day and shows up at law schools as a speaker at night, he’s also pushing to make things better.

Comic Puts a Human Face on the Trials of Being a Lawyer

Law school does change the way a person thinks, and that makes us different from many of our friends.

Legal Community Finds More Than One Reason to Celebrate

If you missed the San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program Inc.’s Justice For All Celebration last week, you missed a great party.

Veteran Trial Lawyer Joins MKB’s Litigation Team

John Stephens has joined Mulvaney, Kahan & Barry LLP after 17 years with Robbins & Keehn and the last six with Sullivan, Wertz, McDade & Wallace, now Wertz, McDade & Wallace.

Profession Deserves Credit for Improving Workplace

This is our Labor Day edition, so it is only fair to acknowledge that without early union leaders this would not be a holiday week.

Court System Budget Cuts Might Put Brakes on Wheels of Justice

The local wheels of justice turn slowly and it might get even slower in the coming months, despite the great work of the professionals in the San Diego Superior Court. Our local court system absorbed an $11.6 million reduction in operating funds this year. That was awful, but next year is going to be, well, awfuler.

Green Economy Generating Green for Law Firms

The green economy has produced more “green” for law firms, too.

Too Many Attorneys? It Depends on Number of Clients, Lawsuits

There were 1.2 million attorneys in the United States at the end of 2010, an increase of 2 percent from a year earlier

Friends Don’t Let Friends Send ‘Friend Requests’

It might seem obvious that friends don’t sue friends. In case it isn’t clear to everyone, given that technology defines friends differently today, the San Diego County Bar Association’s Legal Ethics Committee has adopted an opinion that it is improper for an attorney to send a “friend request” to a represented opponent.

U.S. Supreme Court Rulings to Benefit Employers

The Supreme Court of the United States exists to reverse the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, as the saying goes.

$677M Verdict Helps Luce Forward Partner Earn Recognition

Money makes the world go around, so why should it be any different in legal circles? California Lawyer magazine recently named Luce, Forward, Hamilton & Scripps LLP partner Christopher Healey as a 2010 Attorney of the Year.

Legal Community Is Doing a World of Good

The San Diego legal community is full of news. This column is an attempt to share with you, in a quick-read fashion, the latest from the courtroom to the internal workings of a solo practitioner.