Miscellaneous

The “Oyez” web site now presents oral arguments before the Supreme Court in multimedia: As you listen to the argument you see a synchronized transcript, and a photo of the judge or lawyer speaking appears every time there is a change in speaker. This multimedia presentation makes the experience of listening to these arguments much easier and more pleasant. Link here.

The Massachusetts Appeals Court has made its unpublished decisions available here. This is particularly helpful, since these decisions are difficult to obtain, and on February 25, 2008, the Court issued a ruling permitting unpublished decisions to be cited for their “persuasive value.” This modified a 23 year old court rule that unpublished decisions could not be cited as legal authority.

Massachusetts Federal District Court Judge F. Dennis Saylor, IV has issued a written decision in Commerce Bank and Trust Co. v. TD Banknorth, Inc. (see below). Judge Saylor found a likelihood of confusion between “Commerce Bank” and “TD Commerce Bank,” and issued a preliminary injunction in favor of the plaintiff.… Read the full article

Here is an example of just how complex electronic discovery can become when the stakes are high, and the lawyers are prepared to negotiate an extremely detailed discovery protocol. This document is from the ConnectU v. Facebook litigation, in which ConnectU alleges that the founders of Facebook misappropriated ConnectU ideas and technology. The Order is signed by Magistrate Collings, who is known to be one of the most experienced and sophisticated judges in the Federal District of Massachusetts when it comes to issues of electronic discovery. I’m sure that even he was challenged by this document.

Read the full article

Behind The Scenes at Bear Stearns

by Lee Gesmer on April 23, 2008

I recently wrote about the Bear Stearns v. Sharon case. (See here and here). Here is a link to a Business Week article, “Bailing out of Bear,” that tells the gruesome story behind the Bear Stearns financial debacle and Bears’ suit against Doug Sharon, the star broker at Bear Stearns who left for Morgan Stanley.… Read the full article

Until the recent passage of a new state law (effective July 13, 2008), the Massachusetts Wage Statute contained a provision that provided for trebled damages at the discretion of the judge. An “innocent” violator had a chance of avoiding treble damages; a repeat offender was likely to get whacked.

No more. As of July 13th, treble damages are mandatory. My partner Joe Laferrera has written a Client Advisory explaining in more detail this change in the law. Click here to read the Advisory.… Read the full article