By Caitlin Tremblay
The University of North Carolina system is being sued over
how to define "in-state resident" and who qualifies for cheap
U.S. Army vet Hayleigh Perez, who was stationed at Fort
Bragg, North Carolina, before being deployed to Iraq, has filed
a lawsuit against the university, claiming she should be treated
as an in-state student, reports the Huffington Post.
While living in Fort Bragg, Perez says she kept an apartment
there and, after a 15-month tour in Iraq, returned to the area.
She and her new husband bought a house in nearby Raeford. She
was relocated to Texas in 2009, but the couple continued to pay
North Carolina property taxes, she says.
After returning to North Carolina in December 2011, Perez
decided to pursue a master's degree. She was accepted at two UNC
schools, Fayetteville State University (which considered her an
in-state student) and UNC-Pembroke (which did not). Perez
preferred Pembroke's classes and schedules, but the GI Bill
wouldn't cover the extra $4,603.50 per semester that the school
would have charged her. Pembroke wouldn't budge, and now Perez
The News Observer tried to tackle the question of why one
school would consider Perez in-state and the other wouldn't, but
even the UNC representative couldn't give a solid answer. The
newspaper points out that the state's general statutes don't say
anything about post-9/11 veterans.
It's the economy, stupid
By Erin Geiger Smith
Over the last year, there's been a lot of news about law
schools being sued for fudging their employment numbers by
graduates having trouble finding, well, employment. Yesterday,
Joe Palazzolo at the Law Blog provided an update on the fate of
two such lawsuits -- a Chicago judge spiked them.
Cook County Circuit Judge Mary Mikva threw out cases filed
against the John Marshall Law School and Chicago-Kent College of
Law, issuing just a one-page order. In court, however, she was a
little more loquacious, according to lawyers who passed the info
on to the law blog. Mikva said she followed the reasoning of her
colleague Judge Neil Cohen, who rejected similar suits in
September. Cohen found that it wasn't the law schools' fault
that their alums joined the work force at the height of a
recession that "seriously affected employment in the legal
The dismissals confirm what several experts told Reuters in February. In order for the suits to succeed, plaintiffs faced a
very high bar, said Brian Leiter, a professor at University of
Chicago College of Law. Graduates would most likely have to
prove, for example, that they wouldn't have gone to law school
at all if it weren't for the fudged data. What's more, their
battle for class certification would be an uphill one because
individual questions, not common ones, would be central to such
But University of California at Berkeley's Mark Gergen said
some of the claims might have merit if plaintiffs could prove
the schools posted employment numbers they knew to be wrong or
misleading. Those sorts of questions could come into play in a
suit filed against San Diego's Thomas Jefferson School of Law.
Last month, a former career-services employee said she was told
to mark certain graduates as employed, even if they no longer
Defending the Electoral College
By Suhrith Parthasarathy
Critics of the Electoral College, take note: 7th Circuit
Appeals Court Judge Richard Posner has little patience for your
In the run-up to the presidential election, and in the days
since then, some pundits have been engaging in the quadrennial
exercise of Electoral College bashing. Among other sins, the
college violates the "one man, one vote" principle established
in the 1964 case Reynolds v. Sims, opponents say.
While Posner acknowledges that the Electoral College might
not be the most democratic institution, he argues in Slate that
it brings a degree of certainty to the process. If elections
were to be determined by the popular vote only, Posner writes,
elections would be won and lost by such small margins that
lawyers would have to oversee vote recounts in state after
state. The "result would be debilitating uncertainty, delay, and
conflict," he says. The other prime reason the judge gives for
keeping the Electoral College is that we avoid "run-off
elections." Even if no candidate receives a majority of the
votes cast, the system ensures that there's a winner, he says.
By Erin Geiger Smith
Remember when law firms gave you one choice for your mobile
emailing device, and that choice was a BlackBerry?
While it might seem like that's still true, things are
changing. Nearly 90 percent of AmLaw 200 firms surveyed said
they expect to see fewer BlackBerry users in the next 12 months,
according to a new technology survey by The American Lawyer. At
Williams Mullen, for example, the number of BlackBerry users in
the past few years has dropped from 500 to 40, according to the
firm's chief information officer. Instead, firms increasingly
are shifting to iPhones or Android phones.
The tech shifts also applies to computers and tablets: A
quarter of respondents said they plan to issue attorneys with
both a desktop and a laptop on their next round of technology
updates, and 12 percent will issue a laptop and a tablet.
In all, 83 chief technology officers or other similarly
titled tech types participated in the survey, which also checked
in on the salaries of IT personnel. Thirty-six percent of the
CIOs said they made between $300,000 and $399,999; in a similar
survey conducted last year, only a quarter of CIOs reported
earning salaries that high.
You've got mail, and they know
By Dan Brillman
The affair that caused CIA Director General David Petraeus
to resign has been front-page news for days. The latest
development: a series of reportedly harassing emails that caused
the FBI to follow a trail to the general and his alleged
mistress (and biographer), Paula Broadwell.
No doubt there are many more layers to the affair still to
be revealed, but let's focus on a particular legal one: How much
leeway does the federal government have in looking through
private emails? More than you think, ABC News reports.
The Stored Communications Act allows a "government entity"
to access personal email accounts with only a court order or
subpoena if the message is older than 180 days. Emails newer
than that can be obtained with a warrant, for which probable
cause is necessary (government emails are a different story, but
as Wired reports, both the alleged harassment and sexually
explicit emails were found on anonymous Gmail accounts).
It's unknown whether Petraeus waived his right to private
emails when he assumed command of the CIA, something which ABC
says is sometimes done when taking on high-security positions.
Catherine Crump of the American Civil Liberties Union told
ABC that until all the details of the investigation are
revealed, it's difficult to determine how legal the email
perusing was. But she was quick to point out another scary
truth. "If there is a lesson here, it is about how incredibly
difficult it is for anyone to do anything anonymously," she
Summary Judgments for November 12
Summary Judgments for November 9
Summary Judgments for November 8
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