I Need a Job!

"I see all this potential, and I see squandering. . . . [D]amn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables--slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy stuff we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression.

Our Great War's a spiritual war . . . our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off." --"Tyler Durden," 1999* "Welcome to Fight Club. The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: you DO NOT talk about Fight Club!" I had to say that for the Fight Club fans (great movie). Anyway, I've been job hunting for about four months now (procrastinators don't get the jobs folks), and the above quote came to mind after I spent this past weekend brooding over the terrible job economy once again. I may not share the same views as Brad Pitt's character (or was it technically Edward Norton's character), but I'm definitely on edge about the bleak job market for attorneys. Ok. Perhaps I'm jumping the shark, being overly dramatic, or simply being pessimistic, but my job hunt doesn't seem to be producing a whole lot at the current time. It can quickly turn into a depressing subject when you see other law students around you already getting jobs. Tack on the great job expectation that Law Review puts on your shoulders (that's right, yours truly is the Managing Editor of the school law review), and the lack of a job becomes even more of a burden.

Sometimes you can't help but feel like you're failing when you've worked so hard and have nothing to show for it. Don't get me wrong, I haven't given up hope or thrown in the towel. I'm still looking, and I know that more opportunities will become available the closer it gets to graduation. Still, there will constantly be this nagging voice in my head telling me that I should have a job by now, that I should be doing more to find a job, and that I need to work harder. I'll continue the job search, and I won't give up.

But, it would be nice to see some sign of potential job security in the near future. Or I may need to find law office space and think about going solo. *Fight Club (1999), available at http://www.imdb.com/title/ tt0137523/ quotes (last visited November 10, 2010). Contributed by Jody Sellers, a current 3L law student, who between his limited free time, writes reflective blogs offering insight into the law school experience.

Lawyers Avoid Ethical Issues While Office Sharing -Follow Proper Policy and Procedures

Many attorneys currently find themselves practicing law on their own after cutbacks by law firms all over the country. For these attorneys, office sharing provides distinct advantages. Solo-practitioners can improve their own branding by locating their office within an established law office. This strategy not only affords the solo-practitioner the opportunity to piggy-back off the image created by the established firm, but it also allows the attorney to reduce the costs that come with establishing a new practice. Law firms with excess space to rent benefit by sharing costs and both sides can improve revenue by offering clients a broader range of legal services under one roof. The tough economic climate has created an opportunity for all parties. But with this opportunity comes a certain level of risk. While sharing law office space is not forbidden under ethics rules, care must be taken to avoid potential conflicts. These conflicts revolve mainly around client confidentiality. Proper signage within the offices is required, so that clients can see that the practices are independently operated. Utilizing joint letterhead or listing unaffiliated attorneys on common signs can mislead clients regarding the association between lawyers in the office space. Additionally, telephone answering services should separately handle each practice. Fortunately, these items are easily managed. In fact, many low-tech and high-tech solutions are available to attorneys sharing space. For example, confidentiality can be ensured through the proper storage of client files. Keeping files separate and filing cabinets locked is a simple low-tech solution. Additionally, conversation with the client can be handled discretely by holding all face-to-face meetings behind closed doors, either in an individual office or a conference room. High-tech solutions can also be implemented. Electronic placards, easily updated for changes in personnel, can separately list attorneys in an office and phone systems can be customized to accommodate different users within the space. These types of simple solutions ensure that all parties follow ethical practices. Atlanta law space sharing is a viable option for reducing costs and is efficient. Law firms are now seeking attorneys desiring shared space: "Come share our fully furnished office space in Downtown Atlanta with a great view of Peachtree Street!", noted by a small AV-Rated Law Firm located in the well-known Candler Building. We have one large partner's office available to sublet as well as another office with space for support staff. For instance, quality commercial office space in Downtown Atlanta can be tough to find but we're here to help. This option is highly flexible so you can usually rent as much or as little space as you need to suit your needs. Privacy for each subletting lawyer and for confidential information of clients may be maintained by thinking through the practicalities of your everyday law practice. Downtown Atlanta cubicle space is the workspace option for you if you want to save money on office costs. In 2010, Elaine M. Russell created www.LawSpaceMatch.com, a service that matches lawyers seeking to sublet space with unoccupied office space at compatible law firms around the country. This law office space and other Atlanta be veiwed at www.lawspacematch.com. Elaine M. Russell is a corporate and business attorney representing clients throughout Georgia. Elaine's office is located in the Buckhead section of Atlanta.

Mr. Mom & The Future Attorney

Contributed by: Natalie Lynn Fears

What exactly does it mean to be a wife, and eventually a mother, while also trying to finish first in the game of law school? At first, for me, it meant takeout, piles of dirty laundry, and an unmade bed five days a week. As a newlywed, and a second year law student, it is no doubt that balancing the role of a loving wife with being a diligent student is exhausting. Many sleep deprived nights, and five extra pounds later, I began to find a balance.

The thing about being a law student that is so gripping is the sense of purpose received after pushing through intellectual challenges. The only problem with having my head in a book hours on end daily is the nudging feeling that there may be something outside the text books that's missing. One Friday afternoon, and three baby shower invitations later, I found myself wondering if my husband and I would ever have time for children of our own. While the newly married couples around us were settling into new homes and expanding their families, my husband and I found ourselves climbing the professional ladder.

As a recent business graduate from Georgia Southern University, my husband was working two jobs and desperately trying to find a break in this unforgiving economy. Finding a minute to ourselves, without one of us falling asleep before 9 p.m., had become more challenging than the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. When finals and my second appellate brief were completed, I embarked on the coveted Christmas break. This meant four weeks of rest and relaxation. My biggest worry was finding a Christmas gift for my new in-laws. This hiatus gave me time to reflect on things in life outside law school. After being trained for almost two years to think and write in I.R.A.C. formation, this hypothetical consumed my brain: How could an over achieving law student, married to a double major business whiz, find time to start and raise a family. And then, I had the greatest epiphany of all: I. Issue: What if my husband could be a stay at home dad? And for that matter, how many female attorneys had husbands playing the role of Mr. Mom? R. Rule:

a. Traditional, Common Law Rule: Women should be confined to the home.
b. Proposed Rule for Adoption: Men can elect to stay at home with the children while women fulfill themselves professionally.

A. Analysis: I wondered how many career driven females, especially in the legal field, existed. Were there others like me who had a strong desire to fulfill themselves professionally, but still longed for a family of their own? And then it happened. A fellow peer of mine had a cesarean section the day after our fall semester finals were complete. She shared with me that when she returned to school, her husband would take care of the baby, all day, by himself. She expressed her concern over someone other than a biological parent being her baby's caretaker during those crucial first months. That day I realized that I had a committed partner, whom I considered my equal too. And, if after 3 years of intense legal training, I wanted to climb my way to partner of a private firm, there could still be a parent at home to raise our children. I wondered if I would feel selfish for sacrificing that precious time that so many stay at home moms covet. And then I realized this: Being a working mom gives you the ability to provide for your family in invaluable ways. And the best part is, when you tell your child, especially your little girl that she can be whatever she wants to be, you can say it with a vindication. C. Conclusion: The truth is some men are secure in their role as stay at home dads, and some never will be. My fellow law student was fortunate enough to marry a man that would put his career on the back-burner while she pursued hers. Many men still prefer to be the bread winner of the family, but fortunately there is a growing trend of men who will stay home with the kids for us women who want to pursue a fulfilling legal career.

 

Law Firms React to Landlord's Response to Lease Renewals - Declining Concessions or Renegotiation of the Lease

In Atlanta, law firms are on the move. They are willing to pay the up-front costs to transfer the entire firm from one office location to a new leased location due to several factors. One of the factors includes the old landlord's inability to provide incentives for beneficial lease renewal terms and for proving incentives to law firms to stay in the current space. Instead, landlords are often coming up short in providing any type of monetary tenant improvements, and managing partners are seeking law firm offices elsewhere. With the abundance of empty law offices in Atlanta, law firm are lured to seek new Atlanta law offices. Capital outlays have currently been made in the current locations while newly built commercial buildings are offering super sweet deals plus dollar for dollar tenant improvement incentives. Just recently, the law firm of Fisher & Phillips exited from the classic Resurgens building and has landed in the new 12 & Midtown building located at the corner of Peachtree and 12th Street in the heart of Midtown, Atlanta. The facility is new, shiny and appealing to the broad based clients of Fisher & Phillips, LLP. Roger Quillen, managing partner stated, "the glut of A-plus office space offered an economic incentive we couldn't turn down". "The entire cost of the new space, fully built out and outfitted, was less than our expenses and rent at the old space". Law firms are in transition all over the City of Atlanta. Law firms are setting up and Atlanta law offices are looking closely at the term of their leases and starting negotiations with landlords. While renewal of a current lease is often a first choice, without the incentive to stay, landlords are losing law firm tenants.

It appears that the earlier these managing partners are starting negotiations with landlords the more equipped the law firm is for moving if necessary. For instance, Mr. Finlayson, a managing partner at Mozley Finlayson & Loggins, LLP, a 40-person corporate-law firm in Atlanta, says on the advice of a broker he felt it was the right time to make a deal. After three months of negotiations, he secured a size-year extension at a 20% discount, plus one year of rent at half price, starting in January. Landlords, who retain large to medium sized law firms, such as Ackerman & Co., are pleased not to see a law firm exodus. "We don't want to see tenants walk out the door, particularly big tenants who have been with us a long time," says Frank Farrell, a senior vice president for Ackerman in Atlanta. "The costs of a renewal are probably half of what they are on a new deal." The bottom line is small to large law firms are seeing opportunities in the soft commercial real estate market trying to renegotiate their office lease for less money. Alternatively, law firms are moving their offices to newly built spaces often just down the street from their old location. Resources: Time is ripe for Negotiation Posted March 3, 2011, Walls Street Journal Belt-tightening benefits Fisher& Phillips Posted February, 21 2011, The Daily Report.

Race, Racism, & The Law Memorandum

Impact of Ricci regarding reverse discrimination in the workplace

INTRODUCTION The Ricci case had earned much notoriety as a result of Justice Sotomayor's senate confirmation hearings during the summer of 2009. Members of our legislature opposing her nomination, for whatever reasons they, continually focused on her role in this decision prior to its appeal to our nation's highest court. I remember intently watching the confirmation hearings, hearing Justice Sotomayor being grilled from members of the senate committee solely on the topic. It was not until I began researching this case for the purposes of this memorandum that I learned that Justice Sotomayor did not write an opinion to this case at all, but merely signed an order affirming summary judgment. Ricci v. DeStefano, 264 Fed.Appx. 106 (2d Cir. 2008).

There was a very brief opinion attached to the order. The short text that was given explained that the firefighters did not have a viable Title VII claim; and the Board acted lawfully in refusing to validate the exams to satisfy Title VII requirements when faced with results with a showing of disproportionate racial impact. Id. Subsequent to the order, an active judge of the Court requested a poll on whether to rehear the case in banc. Ricci v. DeStefano, 530 F.3d 88 (2d Cir. 2008). The Second Circuit of Appeals in a 7-6 vote, withdrew their order affirming, and instead issued a per curiam order. Id. Then Judge Sotomayor concurred with Judge Katzmann and Judge Parker in their opinions to decline an en banc rehearing of Ricci. But because of the continuous opposition against Justice Sotomayor during the confirmation hearings on this decision, in addition to the press' nonstop reporting on this attack, my interest in the developments of Ricci was certainly incited. Racism in American society stemming from the time of slavery still exists to a varying degree. Though slavery is of course no longer an issue; prejudice, intolerance, and bigotry continues to inject itself into culture whether those who are realize it or not. To combat this, Congress enacted The Civil Rights Act of 1964 that outlawed discrimination and ended racial segregation in America.

Contributed by: Andrew Thomas Smith In Ricci v. DeStefano, the principle case in this memorandum, the Supreme Court particularly examines an aspect of Title VII of the Act; which prohibits discrimination by covered employers on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. But interestingly enough, legislation that was passed to prevent discrimination of minorities in the workplace, has become the means to prevent discrimination of non-minorities. Discrimination has grown to become a complex entity in itself. Reverse discrimination and affirmative action programs have become the source of much controversy in cases involving inequality in the workplace; and we see the source of ire in the principle case stems from it. Reverse discrimination is: 1) a concept of prejudice directed; 2) against members of certain social or racial groups, as white persons; 3) thought of as being dominant or having benefited from past discrimination against minority groups who are now favored. These are often as a result of (and most commonly associated with) affirmative action programs; the policies that take factors including "race, color, religion, sex or national origin" into consideration in order to benefit an underrepresented group, usually as a means to counter the effects of a history of discrimination..

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964 TITLE VII Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 has been used to both defend and oppose reverse discrimination decisions by employers. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was the subject of the longest Congressional filibuster in history, and until this day it continues to hold that record. Crain, Kim, Selmi, Work Law: Cases and Materials 536 (2006 Lexis/Nexis). Prior to the enactment of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, it was legal for employers to discriminate on the basis of race, sex, national origin, and religion. Id. But the bottom line principle of Title VII is found in section 703(a)(1): "It shall be an unlawful practice for an employer ... to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual or otherwise discriminate against any individual... because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." 42 U.S.C.

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