January 10, 2014 |
There was a boom in law-firm mergers in 2013. That is the main takeaway from a year-end merger report by the legal consulting firm Altman, Weil of Newtown Square, which has been tracking law-firm combinations since 2007. There were 88 mergers involving U.S. firms, up 47 percent from 2012. The trend was national and included firms in Philadelphia and throughout the region. Among them, Blank Rome L.L.P. added eight lawyers in Houston to bolster its maritime and energy practices.
January 9, 2014 |
UNION CITY, N.J. - Children in this primarily Hispanic city have not been sounding off about Gov. Christie's signing a bill last month that lets undocumented immigrants pay in-state tuition at New Jersey colleges. But they were front and center Tuesday as the Republican governor, viewed as a likely presidential candidate in 2016, defended his decision to potential critics. "Let's say that there might be some in this audience today, or some who will watch this on television later, who have a disagreement on the principle of this issue.
January 8, 2014 |
Three Democratic state senators vowed Monday to renew their push for same-sex marriage and antidiscrimination laws in Pennsylvania despite deep partisan divide on the issue. Sens. Mike Stack and Larry Farnese of Philadelphia and Daylin Leach of Montgomery County said at a news conference that the tide was shifting in their favor, particularly on Senate Bill 300, which would make it illegal to deny employment or housing because of a person's sexual orientation or gender identity. "If we had this legislation kicked out of committee," Farnese said, "we have the votes, Democrat and Republican, to pass Senate Bill 300. " The bill and its companion bill in the House have 100 cosponsors from both sides of the aisle.
January 7, 2014
A NEW study about abortion makes it clearer than ever that it's becoming a luxury that only the wealthy will be able to afford. New draconian state laws are forcing so many abortion facilities to close that only women who can afford to travel will be able to access the procedure. The Guttmacher Institute, a research and policy organization, has reported that more abortion restrictions were enacted in the United States in the past three years than during the previous decade. Some 22 states enacted 70 laws curtailing abortion rights last year alone.
December 28, 2013 |
Advocates for victims of clergy sex abuse said Thursday that the dismissal of Msgr. William Lynn's conviction on child-endangerment charges was nothing short of a travesty of justice. "What a disgrace," Marita Green, president of the Philadelphia chapter of the Voice of the Faithful, a group of activist Catholics, said in a statement. "I don't care whose 'orders' Lynn followed, whether [Cardinals] Bevilaqua's, Krol's, or even O'Hara's. It is appalling that the laws in the state of Pennsylvania have been so ineffective that none of these enablers, facilitators, and cover-upers have gone to jail.
December 23, 2013 |
Viewed narrowly, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's momentous decision Thursday to strike down key provisions of the law that regulates natural gas drilling doesn't change anything at all. The court's 4-2 decision restores local zoning control of drilling activity, which was in effect before the law known as Act 13 was passed last year. Despite having to navigate an uneven landscape of local zoning laws, Marcellus Shale gas producers flourished under the old rules. But opponents of shale gas drilling say the court decision carries substantial symbolic and political weight.
December 20, 2013 |
As a gay man in Russia, S.R. said, he was a frequent target. A few months after vigilantes beat him for holding hands with a man in 2011, he said, he and two male friends were at a beach when they were set upon by six drunken thugs. "Someone kicked me from behind, and as I fell forward, another man kicked me in the face. [They] yelled pidirugi " - Russian for "faggots", said S.R., now in his early 30s. His testimony, along with arguments from Villanova University law school students, helped the man win political asylum last month from a U.S. immigration judge in York, Pa. In doing so, S.R., as his lawyers have identified him, joined an emerging class of persecuted immigrants: Russian homosexuals.
December 19, 2013 |
HARRISBURG - Pennsylvania officials were trying to make sense Tuesday of a state Supreme Court ruling that struck down key pieces of the state's Megan's Law. On its face, the high court's decision, released late Monday afternoon, appeared ominous for landmark legislation passed in 2004 that established stricter registering and reporting guidelines for sex offenders. But attorneys for the legislature, as well as law enforcement officials, said Megan's Law will remain in effect even in the face of the court's decision.
December 18, 2013 |
A lawsuit alleging that Lundy Law L.L.P., a worker-compensation firm based in Philadelphia, violated federal antitrust restrictions by locking up advertising on SEPTA buses and KYW drive-time radio has been dismissed by U.S. District Judge Cynthia Rufe. Rufe said Lundy, whose advertisements can be seen on buses throughout the region, had not breached federal antitrust laws because competitor Larry Pitt & Associates likely had other advertising options. At the same time, Rufe permitted Pitt to move forward with a claim that Lundy falsely stated in its advertisements that it handled Social Security disability claims when in fact it referred those cases to other firms.
December 18, 2013 |
The Earle Mack School of Law is no more. The naming rights for the law school at Drexel University are available again, only five years after the school was named for an alumnus who had donated $15 million to the school. Mack, a businessman and former ambassador to Finland, graduated from Drexel in 1959. In a statement issued Monday, the university said the decision was mutual, "that Ambassador Earle Mack has graciously stepped aside as naming benefactor of Drexel's law school.