Featured Columns

TSCA on Hydraulic Fracturing: Gateway to New Federal Rules?

Michael L. Krancer, Margaret Anne Hill and Frank L. Tamulonis III | September 19, 2014

Historically, states have taken the lead in regulating oil and gas development given the states' primary interest in securing rational oil and gas development in their own boundaries. Hydraulic fracturing—a 60-year-old technology used for oil and gas development—is a temporary process of pumping fluids underground for the purpose of extraction of natural gas or oil from deep formations lying 5,000 to 8,000 feet or more below the surface. Fresh groundwater is located from about less than 600 feet below the surface. Hydraulic fracturing has been practiced routinely for decades by operators in many states, including New York.

In-House Counsel

  • Preventing the Leak of Embarrassing Information Online

    By Hayes Hunt and Jillian R. Thornton

    You are general counsel to a company, and your CEO steps into your office, clutching his iPhone in one hand and wiping sweat from his brow with the other, and tells you that a compromising photograph of him was stolen from his phone and posted online. You start thinking not if, but when, shareholders will discover this embarrassment, how much it will cost the company and what legal action to take.

  • The Rise and Risk of Obstructionist Discovery Tactics

    By Hayes Hunt and Arthur P. Fritzinger

    With fewer trials and an increasing focus on using the discovery process to leverage a favorable settlement or resolution, it is common for litigation counsel to be obstructionist during discovery. For example, counsel may interpose depositions with unwarranted boilerplate objections or subtly (or not so subtly) coach the witness by clarifying or commenting on the pending question. While such conduct is often ignored, it has contributed to rising litigation costs throughout the last decade and, as a sanctions order issued at the end of July by a federal judge in the Northern District of Iowa demonstrates, it can severely diminish counsel's credibility before the trial judge. In light of the impact that discovery tactics can have on the cost and success of litigation, it is increasingly important for general counsel to set clear expectations when retaining attorneys to represent the company in litigation.

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Young Lawyer

  • Three Steps for Finding an Ideal Job Fresh Out of Law School

    By Justin J. Koterba

    Searching for the right job has always been an integral part of law school. Sitting in front of your computer and applying to jobs is easy, but it rarely works. Employers want to protect their asset (the company or firm), and only want to hire someone who will go above and beyond for the job. And the only way they can judge a potential employee is to determine whether the prospect is willing (and able) to go above and beyond to get the job.

  • Get It Right the First Time: Making a Good Impression

    By Anthony M. Bottenfield

    It's that time of year: the unofficial start of fall, football season, back to school and the first day of work for many new attorneys. For some, this may be their first real job or at least their first full-time job working as an attorney in a law firm.

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Employment Law

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Business of Law

  • Slaying the Inertia Dragon to Reach Your Full Potential

    By Frank Michael D'Amore

    Actions and results define our careers. In some cases, we achieve resounding victories in winning a trial, closing a deal, landing a major client, or taking the mantle of leadership and driving a group, department or organization to great heights. At other times, we may have suffered defeats, but, in the process, learned valuable lessons that ultimately paved the way to future accomplishments.

  • Five Key Factors to Success in Cross-Selling Efforts

    By Frank Michael D'Amore

    Although some firms do quite well at cross-selling, it has become a Holy Grail for many others. In light of the difficulty of landing new clients, firms understandably see value in marketing additional services to existing customers. There should be lower hurdles to surmount with such clients, as they hopefully respect the firm, which makes the sales effort much easier.

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Litigation

  • Will the Supreme Court Take a Stand on Standing in BP Case?

    By Abby L. Sacunas and Michael Melusky

    It is axiomatic that to certify a class, plaintiffs must show all members satisfy Article III standing and Rule 23 requirements. While federal courts "do not require each member of a class to submit evidence of personal standing, a class cannot be certified if it contains members who lack standing" to pursue the claim(s) asserted, according to Halvorson v. Auto Owners Insurance.

  • Ruling Shows Difficulty Establishing Arbitrator Partiality

    By Abraham J. Gafni

    Unlike judges, arbitrators are generally selected either by the disputants themselves or through a party-approved process. In such circumstances, it might be imagined that both partiality and correctness of decision would be subject to close judicial scrutiny. In fact, reviewing courts will rarely vacate arbitrators' awards on these bases.

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All Columns

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