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NEWS
February 9, 2015 | By Chris Mondics, Inquirer Staff Writer
Crowded with Washington-bound commuters, the Track 5 platform beneath 30th Street Station was swept by a cold wind as Ron Levine stamped his feet and blew into his hands to stay warm. On this unusually icy November day last year, Levine, a prominent white-collar defense lawyer and a former prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney's Office in Philadelphia, and his colleague, Abe Rein, were on their way to the nation's capital. There, they would meet with other lawyers to fine-tune arguments in a Supreme Court case.
NEWS
February 6, 2015 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - Gov. Wolf on Wednesday tapped a bipartisan duo - a law school dean and a central Pennsylvania county judge - to fill vacancies on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Wolf said he would nominate Ken Gormley, dean and professor at the Duquesne University School of Law in Pittsburgh, and Thomas Kistler, president judge of Centre County Court, to the bench. "I am pleased today to announce two extremely qualified and distinguished individuals as my nominees to serve on the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the highest court in the commonwealth," Wolf said.
NEWS
February 2, 2015 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
A once-prominent Philadelphia African American lawyer has been disbarred by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court after failing to respond to professional and ethical complaints. The action, which takes effect Feb. 28 and strips Willie Lee Nattiel Jr. of his law license, was published Thursday by the court. The 23-page opinion lists 10 charges against Nattiel, most involving mishandling client funds and failures to appear for meetings and court hearings of people he had agreed to represent.
NEWS
February 1, 2015 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
A once-prominent Philadelphia lawyer has been disbarred by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court after failing to respond to professional and ethical complaints. The action, which takes effect Feb. 28 and strips Willie Lee Nattiel Jr. of his law license, was published Thursday by the Supreme Court. The 23-page opinion lists 10 charges against Nattiel, most involving mishandling client funds and failures to appear for meetings and court hearings of people he had agreed to represent. Nattiel, 55, could not be reached for comment Friday.
NEWS
January 24, 2015 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
Commonwealth Court judges ruled Thursday that the School Reform Commission does not have the power to cancel union contracts, restoring health-care cuts that were to save the Philadelphia schools $54 million annually. The unanimous ruling appeared to strike down a core operating belief of the SRC. PFT president Jerry Jordan called the decision "a very big victory" that affirmed the union's position that contracts must be negotiated, not imposed, and that the state law that created the SRC did not give it the power to wipe away collective bargaining.
BUSINESS
January 16, 2015 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
In the latest twist on the continuing legal tangle over whether workers are defined as employees or independent contractors, the New Jersey Supreme Court said Wednesday that workers are considered to be employees unless the company can prove otherwise. The case, filed in 2010 in federal court in New Jersey, was closely-watched by business owners and unions. Three New Jersey men, two from the area, who delivered Sleepy's mattresses contended they were improperly classified as independent contractors, causing them to lose benefits and forcing them to cover expenses that should have been paid by Sleepy's L.L.C.
NEWS
January 8, 2015 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - The New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday confronted the possibility of intervening in the state's promulgation of affordable housing rules, two months after the Christie administration failed to meet a court-ordered deadline for adopting new regulations. During 31/2 hours of oral arguments, the justices expressed doubt that the state agency responsible for developing the rules would do so soon, and sought to pursue alternative means to achieve that goal without violating the separation of powers.
NEWS
January 5, 2015 | Inquirer Editorial Board
On leaving the city's old Family Court building, The Inquirer recently reported, some judges saw fit to take the fixtures with them to their new chambers. This neatly illustrated the distance between judicial impropriety and criminal guilt. No one - including the city officials who promised the court's antique accoutrements to the building's buyer - is planning to make a federal case out of this. Nor should they. Still, many Philadelphians are no doubt dismayed that their designated arbiters of justice appeared to stoop to stripping a public facility for parts.
NEWS
December 28, 2014 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
Even as Gov. Christie has slammed the state Supreme Court as too "activist," his administration's inability to establish new affordable-housing rules has raised the prospect that the high court will intervene next year. New Jersey has failed for more than a decade to update its requirements to help municipalities satisfy their constitutional obligation to each provide a fair share of the region's affordable housing to low- and moderate-income residents. After repeated attempts by the Christie administration to fundamentally change that process, the court will hear oral arguments next month in a case brought by affordable-housing advocates, who want the justices to coordinate development of new rules.
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