April 2011 Archives

New York Court of Appeals Summaries for April 30, 2011

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New York Court of Appeals

Summaries for April 30, 2011
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Bessemer Trust Company, N.A. v. Francis S. Branin, Jr.

Docket: No. 63Opinion Date: April 28, 2011

Judge: Ciparick

Areas of Law: Business Law, Corporate Compliance, Labor & Employment Law and Professional Malpractice & Ethics

Plaintiff sued a former employee after a number of the former employee's clients left plaintiff's wealth management and investment advisory firm for the firm that the former employee currently works at. The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit certified the following question for the court: "What degree of participation in a new employer's solicitation of a former employer's client by a voluntary seller of that client's good will constitutes improper solicitation?" In answering the certified question, the court continued to apply its precedents in Von Breman v. MacMonnies and Mohawk Maintenance Co. v. Kessler and held that the "implied covenant" barred a seller of "good will" from improperly soliciting his former clients. The court also held that, while a seller may not contact his former clients directly, he may, "in response to inquiries" made on a former client's own initiative, answer factual questions. The court further held that the circumstances where a client exercising due diligence requested further information, a seller may assist his new employer in the "active development... of a plan" to respond to that client's inquires. Should that plan result in meeting with a client, a seller's "largely passive" role at such a meeting did not constitute improper solicitation in violation of the "implied covenant." As such, a seller or his new employer may then accept the trade of a former client.

http://j.st/otcView Case

In the Matter of James J. Seiferheld v. Raymond Kelly

Docket: No. 84Opinion Date: April 28, 2011

Judge: Smith

Areas of Law: Constitutional Law, Government & Administrative Law, Labor & Employment Law and Public Benefits

Petitioner, a New York City police officer, retired in 2004 and was awarded disability benefits. In the following years, the police department received information indicating that petitioner was not disabled; that he made false representations to the Police Pension Fund ("Fund"); and that he had ingested cocaine, thus becoming ineligible to return to duty. At issue was whether the city should continue to pay petitioner a pension. The court affirmed the Appellate Division's order annulling the termination of petitioner's pension benefits and held that the benefits can only be terminated by the trustee of the Fund, who has not taken necessary action.

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The People v. John Lingle; The People v. John Parisi; The People v. Dominque Murrell; The People v. John Prendergast; The People v. Manual Rodriquez ;The People v. Darryl Sharlow

Docket: 65, 66, 67, 68, 86 and 87Opinion Date: April 28, 2011

Judge: Read

Areas of Law: Constitutional Law and Criminal Law

Defendants, six individuals, sought relief upon resentencing from their statutory obligation to serve postrelease supervision ("PRS"). At issue was whether Double Jeopardy barred their resentencing to PRS; whether substantive due process barred their resentencing to PRS; whether a resentencing court may reconsider a defendant's sentence at a resentencing to correct a People v. Sparber error; and whether the appellate division may reduce a defendant's sentence on appeal from a resentencing to correct a Sparber error. The court rejected defendants' Double Jeopardy argument and held that after it handed down People v. Sparber, the legislature promptly adopted legislation to allow resentencing as many defendants as possible to sentences that include PRS. The court also rejected defendants' substantive due process argument where defendants did not give reason for the court to interpret substantive due process more broadly in these circumstances as a matter of state constitutional law. The court also held that resentencing to set right the flawed imposition of PRS at the original sentencing was not a plenary proceeding. The court further held that the Appellate Division could not reduce the prison sentence on appeal in the interest of justice when a trial court lacked discretion to reconsider the incarceratory component of a defendant's sentence. Accordingly, the court affirmed the Appellate Division's order except People v. Sharlow, where the the order should be reversed and the resentence imposed by the Supreme Court reinstated.

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CALI::The Free Law Reporter

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The Free Law Reporter™ is where free law meets accessibility. It's an electronic case reporter that freely publishes nearly every recent appellate and supreme court opinion, from state to federal US courts.
FLR uses the RECOP project as a starting point, making its opinions searchable online and available as ebook collections, with more features in development.

The Free Law Reporter™ (FLR) is an experiment that builds onCarl Malamud's Report of Current Opinions (RECOP).(more info about RECOP fromJustia,Robert Ambrogi and Ed Walters, CEO of Fastcase). The RECOP bulk feed can be found at http://bulk.resource.org/courts.gov/recop/.

The goal of FLR is to develop a freely available, unencumbered law reporter that is capable of serving as a resource for education, research, and practice. The first step is to use FLR to provide greater access through enhanced and alternate formats of the weekly feeds coming from RECOP.

The weekly feeds provided by RECOP are a new source of court opinions from across the country with each weekly feed containing all slip and final opinions primarily from the appellate courts of the 50 states and the federal government released under a Creative Commons Zero License packaged as XML files in a single weekly archive.

Each weekly feed contains 2 groupings of opinions: slip opinions and paginated cases. The slip opinions are individual documents that come directly from the court, are paginated by the court, and contain little or no citation information. The paginated cases are individual documents that have been added to the West reporter system, contain West pagination and full West citations.

CALI's FLR project is processing the slip opinion portion of the archives to create a body of court opinions that is accessible to anyone including educators, librarians, students, lawyers and the public. The raw XML of the archives is processed into valid XHTML and some meta data is added to facilitate the indexing and classification of the documents. The XHTML files are saved into a web folder structure organized by weekly RECOP volume and jurisdiction for viewing with a web browser. The XHTML files are fed into a search engine powered by Apache Solr allowing for sophisticated searching and analysis of the documents. Finally the weekly volumes are gathered by state and federal jurisdiction into ebooks in the .epub format viewable on virtually any desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone and e-reader device. All of this available now at www.freelawreporter.org. The FLR website is updated weekly as new RECOP archives are released.

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 Some judges are skeptical of claims by lenders that they have substantially improved their foreclosure procedures since controversy over the practices exploded last fall. F. Dana Winslow, a N.Y. State Supreme Court Justice in Long Island's Nassau County, said there has been only "a marginal improvement in what is being submitted to the court." For example, financial institutions are "showing a better chain of title" about who owns the debt, he said. "But I'm not seeing any additional clarity on who has control over the actual mortgage note signed by the borrower and lender and where the note is."

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NYLJ: Family Court Struggles With Budget Reductions

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New York Law Journal

April 29, 2011

Budget cuts have made this "the saddest and most professionally challenging season of my career," New York City Family Court Administrative Judge Edwina G. Richardson-Mendelson (See Profile) said Wednesday evening.

The judge made her remarks during a panel discussion sponsored by the New York County Lawyers' Association on "Doing More With Less: The Effect of Budget Cuts on the Family Court."

But Judge Richardson-Mendelson said she had to "respectfully but strongly disagree" with the event's title. "We will not be doing more with less," she said. "We cannot do more with less. We will focus our efforts to do the very best we can in this difficult season but it will not be more, it will be less."

The judge noted that Family Court night sessions are being eliminated in all five boroughs, and employees are being "re-deployed" so the courts can "get through the business of the day."

And the day has gotten shorter. All but emergency court proceedings are being cut off at 4:30 p.m.

Read entire article (requires free registration).

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Kindle 3

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I wanted to report on my kindle 3 after a month of casual use

The Kindle is fun to use and I've gotten a lot of great, free classic books, using
gutenberg.org and also Google Books, with the downloading software available
from calibre-ebook.com.                                                                                           

One "sleeper feature" I've taken to using on the Kindle is
 sending myself PDF copies of tax articles that I find on SSRN - - often through
taxprof.typepad.com - - Professor Paul Caron's super-useful tax website.  I
download the PDFs of the articles and then forward them to my
personal "free.kindle.com" address on my Kindle.  Reading the PDF
articles on the Kindle is much easier than doing so on the computer
screen, and I don't have to worry about battery life while traveling.  For
example, I read a bunch of PDF articles on the Kindle last week, on a
plane from Albuquerque to Baltimore, and it worked great. 

With respect to copies of PDF law articles, I find  it easier to 
adjust the Kindle to read in landscape mode.   The columnar width
is much better for reading than the standard portrait orientation 
Vincent L. Teahan, Teahan & Constantino, Counsellors at Law,  41 Front St.,
Suite A ,  P.O. Box 1181,  Millbrook NY 12545, tel 845 677 2101, fax 845 677 1054

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This case presents the largely unresolved issue of the extent to which bullying by other students inhibits a disabled child from being educated appropriately, and what her school must do about it. A strict legal test is developed and applied. Plaintiff L.K. acting through her parents, challenges her public school placement by the New York City Department of Education ("DOE") under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. After exhausting her administrative remedies, she brings this action arguing that the placement was procedurally and substantively inappropriate, and her parents seek reimbursement for private school tuition. The DOE moves for summary judgment. The primary complaint is that L.K. was deprived of an appropriate education because her assigned public school did nothing to prevent her from being so bullied by other students as to seriously reduce the opportunity for an appropriate education. Such a contention, under the Individuals with Disability Education Act ("IDEA") provisions that require a proper school placement and appropriate education, apparently have not yet been ruled upon by the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. For the reasons stated below, the issue requires a court evidentiary hearing, and, a possible remand to the state authorities for a rehearing.

Read the full text of decision here (requires free registration).
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Apple - Press Info - Apple Q&A on Location Data

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The iPhone is not logging your location. Rather, it's maintaining a database of Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers around your current location, some of which may be located more than one hundred miles away from your iPhone, to help your iPhone rapidly and accurately calculate its location when requested. Calculating a phone's location using just GPS satellite data can take up to several minutes. iPhone can reduce this time to just a few seconds by using Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data to quickly find GPS satellites, and even triangulate its location using just Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data when GPS is not available (such as indoors or in basements). These calculations are performed live on the iPhone using a crowd-sourced database of Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data that is generated by tens of millions of iPhones sending the geo-tagged locations of nearby Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers in an anonymous and encrypted form to Apple.

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NYLJ: 'Unseemly Process' to Follow Announcement of Job Cuts

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'Unseemly Process' to Follow Announcement of Job Cuts

New York Law Journal

April 28, 2011

ALBANY - The next round of layoffs in the state court system will touch off a scramble in which senior employees whose jobs are being eliminated will claim the positions of less-experienced colleagues.

See an explanation of the civil service bumping process.

"It is an unseemly process, which is why we always say it sounds better to say you are going to lay off workers than to actually do it," said Steven Madarasz, a spokesman for the Civil Service Employee Association. The CSEA is the largest of 11 unions representing court employees, counting as members about 6,000 of the courts' 15,200 nonjudicial workers.

"It is a pretty ugly process because who gets the initial layoff notice may well not be the person who actually goes out the door," Mr. Madarasz added.

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Debt collectors must tread lightly on social media - OrlandoSentinel.com

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The lawsuit filed by Melanie Beacham over alleged harassment by MarkOne Financial is still ongoing. But in the meantime, a Florida judge has ordered the debt collector not to contact Beacham or her family and friends over Facebook or any other social networking site, reports the Orlando Sentinel.

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Jim Calloway's Law Practice Tips Blog: Lawyers and Their iPads

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iPad wordmark.

Image via Wikipedia

If you want a list of blogs focusing on the many ways a lawyer can use an iPad, here's a list for you from Legal Tech Guru, Jim Calloway:

• Tablet Legal (http://www.tabletlegal.com/)
• TechnoESQ (http://www.technoesq.com ) 
• MacsinLaw (http://www.macsinlaw.com )
• The Mac Lawyer (http://www.themaclawyer.com
• Hytechlawyer (www.hytechlawyer.com)
• iPad 4 Lawyers (http://www.tommighell.com/ipad)   
• WalkingOffice (http://www.walkingoffice.com/)
• iPadmania (http://almipad.wordpress.com ) is also a worthwhile site to visit, not legal specific.

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NY case underscores Wi-Fi privacy dangers - Yahoo! News

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BUFFALO, N.Y. - Lying on his family room floor with assault weapons trained on him, shouts of "pedophile!" and "pornographer!" stinging like his fresh cuts and bruises, the Buffalo homeowner didn't need long to figure out the reason for the early morning wake-up call from a swarm of federal agents. That new wireless router. He'd gotten fed up trying to set a password. Someone must have used his Internet connection, he thought. "We know who you are! You downloaded thousands of images at 11:30 last night," the man's lawyer, Barry Covert, recounted the agents saying. They referred to a screen name, "Doldrum." "No, I didn't," he insisted. "Somebody else could have but I didn't do anything like that." "You're a creep ... just admit it," they said.

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Top Stories of the Week

The Man Who Successfully Challenged Five Speeding Tickets Using Traffic Photo Timestamps

Will Foreman keeps getting nabbed by traffic cameras for speeding. Believing the cameras to be inaccurate, he analyzed the timestamps and the position of his car in each pair of photos, using them to successfully contest five speeding tickets. More »

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ILW.COM - immigration news

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ILW.COM Immigration Daily 

Want to give your web site constantly updated content and provide your visitors with the latest immigration news? You can display the latest ilw.com daily immigration headlines on your web page--and they'll be automatically updated every time the stories change, with no action needed on your part! Headlines change several times each weekday and will link your visitors to a summary of each story and further background info. You'll need to insert some HTML code to make it work, but once you've added the code, you'll be all set.

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Justia Opinion Summaries :: Justia Law

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Justia Opinion Summaries 

Justia is providing FREE Daily & Weekly Opinion Summaries for all Federal Courts, and selected State Supreme Courts. 

See an example daily email for the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals or a weekly practice area email for Environmental Law.

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iPad4Lawyers - Blog Posts by Tom Mighell

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SAN FRANCISCO - MARCH 02:  The new iPad 2 (L) ...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

iPad 4 Lawyers, a blog and directory with information on the best iPad apps, tips and tricks for lawyers is written by Tom Mighell, a Senior Manager with Contoural, where he helps companies deal with their records management and electronic discovery issues.  Prior to being a consultant Tom worked as a litigator with a Dallas insurance defense firm for 18 years. He understands how lawyers like to use technology in their practices. He's also a technology nut,  who has been a passionate iPad user since shortly after the device came out last year.  He wrote an introductory book - iPad in One Hour for Lawyers - that has been published by the ABA.
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NYLJ: 58 Given Pink Slips as Court Layoffs Begin

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58 Given Pink Slips as New York Court Layoffs Begin

For the first time in 20 years, New York's court system laid off employees today. Jobs being cut include computer programmers, secretarial staff, auditors and attorneys, Judge Lawrence H. Marks said.

Read full article in NYLJ (free registration required)

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Empire Justice Center: Articles on 2011 NYS Budget

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To help better understand critical components of the enacted budget, the Empire Justice Center has posted a series of articles and statements on their website, which are summarized and linked below. 

Fundamental Changes to NY Medicaid and EPIC Outcomes in the 2011 State Budget: Click Here.

Social Services and Child Care State Budget and Policy Outcomes: Click Here.

State Budget Results: Funding for Legal Services - Cuts, Restorations and Hope for the Future: Click Here. 

Foreclosure Prevention Veto Severs a Lifeline for Homeowners: Click Here.

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The Kinship Guardianship Assistance Program (KinGAP)

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New York State Office of Children & Family Services has available for download a helpful new publication:

Know Your Permanency Options:

The Kinship Guardianship Assistance Program (KinGAP)

If you are a fully certified or approved foster parent and a relative has been placed with you as a foster child for six months or more, you may be eligible for the Kinship Guardianship Assistance Program (KinGAP). KinGAP is designed to support permanent placements for foster children with relatives to whom they are related by either blood, marriage, or adoption. This program provides financial support and, in most cases, medical coverage for the child. The financial support is similar to the foster care maintenance payments you receive as a foster parent.

Included with this booklet are two attachments to review with your caseworker when exploring your permanency options.

"Factors for Related Foster Parents to Consider When Reviewing Permanency Options" (page 12) will help you and your caseworker determine the best permanency option for the child and your family. "New York State's Permanency Comparison Chart" (page 13) compares kinship guardianship assistance, adoption assistance, and foster care.

Word Processor

Image by rahady via Flickr

Nobody uses Wordperfect more than lawyers.  We just can't seem to or want to get rid of this old code WordProcessor.  Here's a neat solution to the problem of reading WP documents on your iPhone.  ($4.99)

Take WordPerfect® with you on your iPhone®! When you're on the move, WordPerfect® Viewer gives you the freedom to keep business moving--wherever you go. Read WordPerfect email attachments and downloaded files with a simple tap. Need to scan a document quickly? Use the search feature to find relevant sections by keyword.

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Image representing Epocrates as depicted in Cr...

Image via CrunchBase

Epocrates is a leading provider of clinical solutions to healthcare professionals and interactive services to the healthcare industry. Most commonly used on mobile devices at the point of care, their products help healthcare professionals make more informed prescribing decisions, enhance patient safety and improve practice productivity. Their user network consists of over one million healthcare professionals, including over 300,000, or over 45% of, U.S. physicians.

Their free products, including apps for all major smart phones, are very useful for health care professionals, consumers, and lawyers who deal with both groups:



Free mobile drug reference



Free add-on applications for your Epocrates software



Free on-the-go learning center



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Second Circuit CLE: Ethics Update (May 2011)

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NDNY Federal Court Bar Association, Inc.

NDNY Federal Court Bar Association, Inc.

Proudly Announces


A New York State

Federal Judicial Council - Advisory Group

Complimentary Second Circuit CLE Program


Ethics Update:

"Perspectives from the Federal & State Judiciary"

(2.0 hrs. CLE Ethics Credits)


REGISTER AT http://ww2.ca2.uscourts.gov/cle/Login.aspx 

Program Chair:  Doreen A. Simmons, Esq., Hancock Estabrook, LLP 


Moderators will present differences in the interpretation and application of ethical standards, disciplinary proceedings, and sanctions in Federal and State Courts.  Program topics will address issues in both criminal and civil practice including counsel withdrawal, discipline and sanctions, the no-contact rule, attorney disqualification, and ethics surrounding social media.


This program is complimentary to any attorneys admitted to practice in the State of New York.  Following each program, there will be a light refreshment gathering which will include the Judicial Panel.  THERE IS NO FEE FOR THIS CLE OR THE RECEPTION.   


Space will be limited. You may now register for any of these programs through the Second Circuit registration program.



Eastern DistrictMay 11 (5:30-7:30 p.m.) 


Chair:  Marjorie J. Peerce, Esq., Stillman, Friedman & Shechtman, P.C.


Location:  EDNY Courthouse / Ceremonial Courtroom Program will be video-conferenced to Central Islip Courthouse


Moderator:  Bruce A. Green, Esq., Fordham University School of Law


Judicial Panel:


Hon. Brian M. Cogan, District Judge, EDNY

Hon. Barry Kamins, Admin. Judge for Criminal Matters, 2d Jud. Dist.

Hon. Sylvia Hinds-Radix, Admin. Judge for Civil Matters, 2d Jud. Dist.



Southern District: May 10 (5:30-7:30 p.m.)


Chair:  Bernice K. Leber, Esq., Arent Fox PLLC


Location:  DPM Courthouse/Ceremonial Courtroom Program will be video-conferenced to White Plains Courthouse


Moderator:  Bruce A. Green, Esq., Fordham University School of Law


Judicial Panel:


Hon. Loretta A. Preska, Chief Judge, SDNY

Hon. Angela M. Mazzarelli, Assoc. Justice of Appellate Div., 1st Dept.

Hon. Bernard J. Fried, Supreme Court Justice, Commercial Division



Northern District (Albany): May 10 (3:00-5:00 p.m.)


Chair:  Linda J. Clark, Esq., Hiscock & Barclay, LLP


Location:  U.S. Courthouse/Ceremonial Courtroom


Moderator:  Patrick M. Connors, Esq., Albany Law School


Judicial Panel:


Hon. Gary L. Sharpe, District Judge, NDNY

Hon. Randolph F. Treece, Magistrate Judge, NDNY

Hon. E. Michael Kavanagh, Justice of the Appellate Div., 3rd Dept.

Hon. Kimberly O'Connor, Supreme Court Justice, N.Y. Court of Claims



Northern District (Syracuse):  May 11 (3:00-5:00 p.m.)


Co-Chairs:  Doreen A. Simmons, Esq., Hancock Estabrook, LLP

                   Edward R. Conan, Esq., Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC


Location:  U.S. Courthouse/Ceremonial Courtroom


Moderator:  Patrick M. Connors, Esq., Albany Law School


Judicial Panel:


Hon. Norman A. Mordue, Chief Judge, NDNY

Hon. George H. Lowe, Magistrate Judge, NDNY

Hon. John V. Centra, Assoc. Justice of the Appellate Div., 4th Dept.

Hon. Deborah H. Karalunas, Supreme Court Justice, Onondaga Co.



Western District (Buffalo): May 9 (2:30-4:30 p.m.) 


Co-Chairs:  Jeffrey A. Wadsworth, Esq., Harter Secrest & Emery, LLP

                   Sharon M. Porcellio, Esq., Ward Greenberg Heller & Reidy


Location:  U.S. Courthouse/Ceremonial Courtroom


Moderator: Jeremy R. Feinberg, Esq., Special Counsel for Ethics


Judicial Panel:


Hon. Richard C. Wesley, U.S. Ct. of Appeals, Second Circuit

Hon. Hugh B. Scott, Magistrate Judge, Western District of New York

Hon. Eugene M. Fahey, Assoc. Justice of the Appellate Div., 4th Dept.

Hon. John M. Curran, State Supreme Court Justice, Erie County


REGISTER AT http://ww2.ca2.uscourts.gov/cle/Login.aspx


 "The New York State-Federal Judicial Council is composed of Federal and State Judges appointed by the Chief Judges of the State of New York and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, assisted by an Advisory Group of judges and practitioners.  The mission of the Council is to foster improved communication and cooperation among Federal and State court systems throughout New York by developing and sponsoring joint projects.  This has included Continuing Legal Education presentations relating to mortgage foreclosure, electronic discovery, and dispute resolution, as well as evaluations of various parallel State and Federal programs and the effective sharing of knowledge and resources."

Gov't orders 14 lenders to reimburse homeowners - Yahoo! News

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NYLJ: Children's Centers at Courts Are Hit Hard by Budget Cuts

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A program that provides what the courts have described as "a safe, supportive haven" in the courthouse for children whose parents are involved in legal proceedings has fallen victim to budget cuts. Administrators this week mandated substantial cuts in the funding and hours of operation of 34 children's centers. The hours of Family Court centers will be halved, while those outside Family Court will be eliminated entirely.

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Budget Deal Cuts $15.8M From Legal Services The bipartisan deal on the federal budget includes a $15.8 million midyear cut for the Legal Services Corp., according to new details released on Tuesday. The cut is smaller than the $70 million that House Republicans proposed to take in February from the Legal Services Corp., which is the nation's largest funding source for civil legal aid to the poor. Still, program officials had hoped to avoid any cut because demand for legal aid has increased during the economic downturn.

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iPhone 5 is Nowhere Near Production - PCWorld

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iPhone 4 showing the home screen.

Image via Wikipedia

A deluge of reports in recent weeks mean we've been working on the assumption Apple won't introduce the new smartphone until September, but even this could be optimistic a new report explains -- it may even be 2012 before we see iPhone 5.

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YouTube Blog: YouTube is going LIVE

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Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

The initial roll out of YouTube Live, which will integrate live streaming capabilities and discovery tools directly into the YouTube platform for the first time, begins with a new YouTube Live browse page (www.youtube.com/live). Subscribe to your favorite YouTube live-streaming partners to be notified of upcoming live streams on your customized homepage.

Their live streaming beta platform will allow certain YouTube partners with accounts in good standing to stream live content on YouTube. The goal is to provide thousands of partners with the capability to live stream from their channels in the months ahead. 

Go to www.youtube.com/live to check out some of the live streams taking place.

NOTE: If you're a cricket fan, this is the place to watch India Premier League Cricket live.

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An adult male chicken, the rooster has a promi...

Image via Wikipedia

As the local and regional food shed movement and the urban agriculture movement continue to grow, uses once considered only found on the rural farm are now finding their ways into urban and suburban communities. As a result, municipalities across the country are now facing the challenge of regulating the keeping of chickens in residential districts. From nuisance law to zoning regulations addressing the number of hens that may be kept on parcels, whether roosters are allowed, the size and location of coops and other issues, this article reviews the rapidly developing trends in this area of land use law

Salkin, Patricia, Feeding the Locavores, One Chicken at a Time: Regulating Backyard Chickens (March 1, 2011). Zoning and Planning Law Report, Vol. 34, No. 3, p. 1, March 2011; Albany Law School Research Paper No. 46. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1774023

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David Ahn, an internal medicine resident, has done a review of seven iPad stylus pens.  All jokes about Doctors' handwriting aside, this is an excellent summary for those thinking about using handwriting annotations on their iPads.  Ahn presents actual examples of the hand writing from each stylus, using different settings and adjustments.  Be certain to click through to subsequent pages to see photos and descriptions of each stylus.

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LibreOffice is the free power-packed Open Source personal productivity suite for Windows, Macintosh and Linux, that gives you six feature-rich applications for all your document production and data processing needs: Writer, Calc, Impress, Draw, Math and Base. Support and documentation is free from our large, dedicated community of users, contributors and developers. You, too, can alsoget involved!

See what LibreOffice can do for you »u »

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Washington governor signs bill recognizing out-of-state same-sex marriages 
Daniel Makosky at 2:14 PM ET

Photo source or description
[JURIST] Washington Governor Chris Gregoire [official website] on Tuesday signed a bill[materials] recognizing out-of-state same-sex marriages [JURIST news archive] as legal domestic partnerships. House Bill 1649 amends current law [AP report] that acknowledges out-of-state domestic partnerships and civil unions, but excludes same-sex marriage. TheSenate [official website] approved the bill by a 28-19 vote [Seattle Times report] last week after the House of Representatives [official website] passed the bill [JURIST report] by a similar margin earlier in the month. The bill will become effective 90 days after the close of the current legislative session.

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News Item > What Happens to Courts if the Federal Government Closes?

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What Happens to Courts if the Federal Government Closes? 
April 05, 2011 

If Congress is unable to agree on the continued funding of government before April 8th, the Judiciary is prepared to use non-appropriated fees to keep the courts running for up to two weeks. Once that funding is exhausted, however, the federal court system faces serious disruptions. Following their own contingency plans, federal courts would limit operation to essential activities. For the federal courts, this would mean limiting activities to those functions necessary and essential to continue the resolution of cases. All other personnel services not related to performance of Article III functions would be suspended. The jury system would operate as necessary, although payments to jurors would be deferred. Attorneys and essential support staff in federal defender offices and court-appointed counsel would continue to provide defense services as needed, but again, payments would be deferred. Courts would determine the number of probation office staff needed to maintain service to the courts and the safety of the community.

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A Day in the Life of an iPad Lawyer

March/April 2011 Law Practice Magazine, Volume 37 Issue 2


Joshua Barrett (jbarrett@bhlaw.com) is a partner and head of the Business Practice Group at Black Helterline LLP in . He is also the publisher of TabletLegal.com, the leading blog discussing use of Apple's iPad in the legal profession.

The iPad has become an indispensable part of my work life. In many cases, it's simply the best tool for the job and, loaded with useful apps, it fits my workflow. Follow along for 24 hours to see how the iPad fits into my typical day--and whether it might be a good fit for you.

Read entire article/day showing uses of iPad.

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Quick Tour: Real Practice

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Law Technology News

April 01, 2011

RealPractice's new matter web form has a snappy workflow with templates. The form, which is free for solo practitioners, automatically gives the matter a name based on the client's name. There are three templates: divorce, contract action, and tort action. Creating a new matter brings up an option to add tasks to a "to do" list. The new-client window's marketing section can note the referral source. Billing rates are shared with RealPractice's billing functions, enabling invoice tracking. The marketing tab provides for tracking time periods, costs, and returns on campaigns. From the website tab, it is easy to make a new site -- by selecting a layout and theme. It provides pages for practice area descriptions. It also includes a "contact us" page that generates a map to your office. Missing: a page pointing to a blogging service.

Web-based practice management software frees small firm lawyers from serving as IT staff.

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