- The East Washington police chief, who was the subject of a federal raid over the weekend, is in jail facing federal charges. He’s accused of protecting people he thought were drug dealers, selling Tasers to people he thought were criminals, and arranging for the shooting of a car. [Post-Gazette]
- Pittsburgh’s banks really get robbed a lot. Case in point: this Bloomfield bank was just robbed for the second time in two weeks. [Trib]
- Pennsylvania may change its approach to eyewitness identifications in criminal court. [Trib]
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court just announced that the state’s Administrative Office of the Courts has begun “updating” the boundaries for the state’s magistrate judicial districts. The idea is to cut costs by reducing the number of judgeships. No word on how the already-swamped state courts will handle this.
Read the press release here.
Nonstop learning opportunities this Thursday!
- 12:30pm – 2:30 p.m, Duquesne University. Future of the Establishment Clause in Context. Free, but registration is closed. [Duquesne]
- 2pm – 4pm, U.S. Courthouse. 2011 Federal Sentencing Guidelines Update, $15 for members. [Federal Bar Association]
- 4pm to 5pm, ACBA. Ten Commandments of Complaint Avoidance. $5 for members. [ACBA]
- Criminal records and some civil records: now available on your mobile phone! [Post-Gazette]
- Reed Smith opens an energy law group. [Post-Gazette]
- Pennsylvania Supreme Court may reckognize a “highly reckless plaintiff” affirmative defense to products liability claims. [Post-Gazette]
- Western Pennsylvania will probably lose some seats in the state legislature. [Trib]
- The Economist: Income-based repayment of student loans should become the norm. [Economist]
If you are going to do document review, wouldn’t it be better to do it with sangria and tapas in hand while living in Spain? Yes, yes, it would. And if you are fluent in Spanish, you can live the dream. PartnerJD is advertising on Craigslist for a position abroad, likely based in Madrid but with a potential to work in Belgium and England as well. [Craigslist]
Locally, Hudson is advertising a 3-month doc review project that will start in late November. It’s going to be on-site at Hudson, which I understand means free parking and a flexibility in hours that makes it popular for solo practitioners looking to supplement their income. Hudson is recruiting paralegals, JDs, and attorneys for the project, with a pay range from $18 to $25 per hour. [Craigslist]
Elsewhere in the contract attorney world, the Posse List sends word of what could be a good assignment for someone with finance experience:
Remote Project Opportunities
Lumen Legal is working with a Fortune 500 Financial Services company who has on-going project needs for experienced attorneys who have 10+ years of recent in-house, regulatory/compliance experience of preparing coverage opinions in the financial services industry.
Opportunities vary in length and consist of a series of as-needed projects that mostly require 40 hours/week. Candidates must have specific Financial Services industry experience in order to be considered.
Interested candidates should send an updated Resume (in a MS Word Format) to email@example.com and reference Job #4680PL in the subject line.
- The State Senate and the Governor have approved a school voucher plan. The legislation is now headed to the House. “This is the most significant effort at educational reform in well over a decade,” said Sen. Jeffrey Piccola, R-Daupin, who co-sponsored the bill. [Post Gazette]
- Occupy Pittsburgh protesters went into PNC yesterday to try to open bank accounts at a corporate rate of 7.2 percent. PNC locked the doors and closed the police. Natural humans get a rate of around 1 percent, according to City Paper’s Twitter stream. I actually think this is a pretty clever way to point out the disparity, and it reminds me of the UC Berkeley Republican bake sale (albeit from the other side of the political spectrum). [Post Gazette]
- Some experts speculate that mortgage standards should be loosened in order to boost the housing market. Hmm. [Tribune]
- Thank you Cliff Tuttle for telling your readers about Third Chair’s ongoing pursuit of cheap ways for Pittsburgh’s up-and-coming lawyers to satisfy their CLEs. [Pittsburgh Legal Backtalk]
We’re @ThirdChair on Twitter if you are into that sort of thing.
And now, because nobody wants to work at 3pm, Above the Law just published the excellent rap stylings of Juan, a Florida Law student whose excellent raps help him memorize his corporations outline. For example, to the tune of Gangster’s paradise.
As I walk through the (SILICON) valley of death
I take a look at my (ENRON STOCK AND) realize there’s no more left
Cause I’ve been (COOKING THE BOOKS) for so long that
Even (THE GAAP) thinks that my mind is gone
It’s magic. Read the whole Above the Law post for context — and sound!
If you’re a lawyer, odds are your friends sometimes ask your opinion on their brilliant business ideas. And maybe some of them really are brilliant, and you want to help them start out. If so, check out this excellent checklist from Scott Edward Walker, who has been a corporate lawyer for 17 years.
Note that the list is tailored to venture-funded technology startups, so certain advice — like forming a corporation rather than an LLC because VCs only like to invest in corporations — might not apply in every situation. Also, neither ThirdChair nor the blogs we link to is your attorney or is a substitute for getting legal advice. Still this is a great checklist and a great place to start.
Check out the full article at VentureBeat here.
President Obama has apparently given up on Congressional approval for anything and is executive ordering various mortgage relief and other initiatives to help beleaguered citizens. Today, he will announce a couple of things that might help law school and other graduates saddled with unbearable student loans.
- The government was already going to cap income-sensitive federal student loan payments at 10 percent of income starting in 2014. The President is moving this date up to 2012.
- The government will improve the income-sensitive repayment plan with a “Pay as You Earn” program that forgives federal student loan debt after borrowers pay 10 percent of their income for 20 years. (Right now, borrowers have to pay 15 percent of their income for 25 years.)
- Starting in January, borrowers will get a 0.5 percent interest rate reduction for consolidating federal student loans. This will lower their monthly payments, of course, along with reducing the amount of money they pay over time.
So far, there is no relief in sight for law students with pricier private loans.