Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Footnotes, footnotes, where to put your footnotes?


Have you ever put citations in the footnotes of a brief, rather than in the main body? I have. I thought it made the document easier to read, and easier to look at. I even thought it made it a bit easier for the judge to find the footnotes.  Lest you think me crazy, uber legal writer Bryan Garner is also a proponent of citations in footnotes.

Mr. Garner and I would appear to be in the minority. Above the Law has a great footnote story. Allow me to liberally quote from ATL:

Via the Twitter feed of Ross Guberman, a leading expert on legal writing, comes this benchslap from Judge James K. Bredar (D. Md.):
Before addressing the merits of Defendant’s motion to dismiss, the Court cautions both parties to observe certain rules as to the format of motion papers. First, the parties’ motion papers employed a method of citation of authorities that is not only incompatible with the rules but also a hindrance to the Court’s consideration of the parties’ respective arguments. For documents filed in this Court, the Local Rules neither permit nor require the citation of authorities in footnotes, as opposed to incorporating them into the text of documents. See The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation R. B1.1, at 3 (Columbia Law Review Ass’n et al. eds., 20th ed. 2015) (“In non-academic legal documents, such as briefs and opinions, citations generally appear within the text of the document immediately following the propositions they support. Footnotes should only be used in non-academic legal documents when permitted or required by local court rules.”). Second, the former rule requiring attachment to motion papers of unpublished case opinions has been omitted from recent iterations of the Local Rules. A citation to either Westlaw or LEXIS suffices for unpublished opinions. Counsel should familiarize themselves with these rules. Future noncompliant filings will be stricken without prior notice.
Ouch! Who says the Bluebook is dead?
The survey in the ATL story would also indicate that most of us expect our footnotes in the body of the text. Only 31% of the survey respondents support cites in the footnotes.

Please click here for an as usual awesome story from Above the Law!
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Friday, August 19, 2016

I have written a lot about the less paper law office. It is a great topic, that is always evolving. With so much of our technology moving to the cloud, the topic is due for an update.

Sam Glover over at Lawyerist.com has posted a very insightful article, will all the latest and greatest

thought provoking ideas for going paper-less.  Of course he writes about scanners, and laptops, and cloud products. He also writes about work flow, and those ideas are very, very helpful. I couldn't write the article better myself so I am enthusiastically directing traffic to Sam's piece. Please click here for a great read.

Please visit hardinglaw.com for more information about Harding & Associates Family Law 

#paperless #lawyerist #Harding&AssociatesFamilyLaw #californiafamilylaw #divorce #family law #superlawyers #americanacademyofmatrimoniallawyers #Pleasantondivorce #AlamedaCountyDivorce #ContraCostaCountyDivorce #lawyers

Thursday, August 18, 2016

New Lawyers, Old Lawyers. We all Need Technology.

Jeff Bennion is a San Diego trial lawyer. He has contributed a great article to Above The Law advising young lawyers on the need to embrace technology.  While written to new lawyers, Jeff's advice is relevant to all of us at the bar. Ediscovery, trial presentations, practice management are all driven by technology these days. It is not the next wave, it is the now wave and we all have to know it. Jeff's offers some great tips on how to sherten your learning curve.

Please click here to take a look at Jeff's article, and for some good advice.

Please visit hardinglaw.com for more information about Harding & Associates Family Law 

#lawyertechnology #Harding&AssociatesFamilyLaw #californiafamilylaw #divorce #family law #superlawyers #americanacademyofmatrimoniallawyers #Pleasantondivorce #AlamedaCountyDivorce #ContraCostaCountyDivorce #lawyers

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Here Comes Stanford!

I was surfing the net the other day, well . . . because that's what I do, when I came across something that I found very intriguing. The Legal Design Lab is a project at Stanford University. The Legal Design Lab (formerly the Program for Legal Technology & Design) was founded in fall 2013 to bring designers, lawyers and technologists together to advance legal innovation and access to justice. The folks there run workshops and teach classes on how legal design and technology can be applied to specific problems in the world of law. They create concept designs for new legal products and services, and build them out with agile, design-driven teams. The development projects at LDL are also research-driven, to create results about what works in legal innovation. Their ultimate goal is to build a stronger community around innovation in legal services, and to do this they’ve adopted a core open-source ethic.

How about this for an idea: The Court Messaging Project is an open-source initiative to build an out-of-the-box tool for any court or legal services group to send automated messages to their clients.  The overarching goal of the project is to make the court system more navigable and to improve people’s sense of procedural justice — that legal system is fair, comprehensible, and user-friendly.

Or this: Navocado is small team of lawyers, developers, and designers abuilding a new set of interactive, user-friendly guides & tools to navigate the complexities of the legal system. They will connect legal experts with lay people, helping them communicate about what legal options are open and how to pursue them.  This will help lay people navigate and resolve legal problems, either with a trained advocate or on their own. Instead of long documents saved in PDFs, they are creating guides to legal processes that are interactive, tech-enabled, and user-friendly.

That is all very cool stuff. If you are at all familiar with Stanford University you already appreciate that they do some pretty cool stuff there. The Stanford Prison Experiment, the Internet, Google, Cisco Systems, Yahoo, Trader Joe's, Netflix, Hewlett Packard, Snapchat, Andrew Luck all have ties to Stanford.

I am pretty excited that those big Stanford brains are working on making the legal system better. There is going to be some cool stuff coming out of Palo Alto for us lawyerists.

Please visit hardinglaw.com for more information about Harding & Associates Family Law

#Stanford #Harding&AssociatesFamilyLaw #californiafamilylaw #divorce #family law #superlawyers #americanacademyofmatrimoniallawyers #Pleasantondivorce #AlamedaCountyDivorce #ContraCostaCountyDivorce #lawyers

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

From London

The Peacock Room at Farrer & Co.
As a Fellow in the International Academy of Family Lawyers I enjoy the privilege of associating with the finest family law lawyers from around the world. From those associations genuine friendships have evolved. Case in point: last week I traveled to London (truly one of the world’s greatest cities). While there my friend Simon Bruce and his colleagues at Farrer & Co. hosted a fabulous lunch for us. Set in the firm’s magnificent Peacock Room, it was a remarkable day! Also joining us were Farrer & Co. partners Claire Gordon and Caroline Holley. Of course Simon proudly gave us a full tour of the firm’s impressive facilities. The firm was founded in 1701, and its beautiful headquarters date back to the 1680s! Not too many law firms can boast of a guest book with a signature from Queen Elizabeth. Farrer & Co. can!
The red brick facade of Farrer & Co.

As if our friends from Farrer were not good enough, Simon also graciously asked other IAFL Fellows and good friends Henry Hood and John Nicholson to join us. What a fabulous day! I cannot thank my London colleagues enough for taking time out of their busy schedules to network and talk shop for an afternoon. It is such collegiality that makes me so very proud to be a member of the bar.
Regards,
John Harding

Please visit hardinglaw.com for more information about Harding & Associates Family Law.
#London #Farrer #IAFL #Harding&AssociatesFamilyLaw #californiafamilylaw #divorce #family law #superlawyers #americanacademyofmatrimoniallawyers #Pleasantondivorce #AlamedaCountyDivorce #ContraCostaCountyDivorce #lawyers

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