Wake Up Call: Kaye Scholer, Arnold & Porter Stop Merger Talks

June 14, 2016, 11:30 AM

• Kaye Scholer and Arnold & Porter have reportedly halted their merger talks. (The Lawyer)

• Microsoft’s announcement Monday of plans for a $26 billion deal for social networking website LinkedIn is a big win for the two law firms involved in the purchase: with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett advising Microsoft and LinkedIn getting advice from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. (Big Law Business)

• The mass shooting in an Orlando gay club has spurred some lawyers and law firms to look at contributing pro bono “muscle” and litigation to efforts to reform U.S. gun laws. (Big Law Business)

• The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which acts as Wall Street’s self-regulating body, said Monday that it had hired Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton securities partner Robert Cook as its new president and CEO. (American Lawyer)

Legal Market

• KPMG Switzerland has resigned as auditor of FIFA, the world soccer governing body, amidst Quinn Emanuel’s internal investigation for the association, which faces several corruption investigations. (Financial Times)

• In an appeal stemming from Heller Ehrman’s 2008 collapse, a federal court Monday grappled with questions over bankrupt law firms’ unfinished business and when estates can claw back profits from clients that partners carry with them to new law firms. (Law.com)

• Two court cases last week illustrate the debate over how far prosecutors can go in requiring a lawyer to testify against a client in white-collar crime investigations. (New York Times DealBook)

• The wave of at least 38 firms following Cravath, Swaine & Moore’s lead in hiking salaries for first-year associates by $20,000, to $180,000, has sparked concerns that it could create a new tier of elite law firms where entry positions are harder to get. (Big Law Business)

• Hogan Lovells Monday became the first Washington “Big Four” firm to announce that it will match the increase. (National Law Journal)

• Major U.S. law firms have been slow to respond to a plea by the Legal Services Corporation for help funding civil legal services programs for the poor. (American Lawyer)

SCOTUS and other courts

• The U.S. Supreme Court Monday voted unanimously to ease the way for larger damage awards when a company intentionally copies a patented invention. (Big Law Business/Bloomberg Law)

• In a 5-2 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Puerto Rico law that would have let its public utilities restructure their debt over the objection of creditors, leaving the island dependent on Congress to resolve its fiscal crisis. (Big Law Business/Bloomberg Law)

• Senate Republicans’ categorical refusal to consider President Barack Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick B. Garland for the Supreme Court is unprecedented , according to two law professors’ new study of 103 past nominations to fill vacancies on the court. The report immediately drew criticism from a prominent conservative legal blogger. (New York Times)

• Courts are increasingly asked to rule on how far governments can go in regulating military-style assault rifles like the one the shooter in Orlando used to kill 49 people. (Law.com)

Laterals and Moves

• Cleary said David Gelfand, a former deputy assistant attorney general for litigation in the Department of Justice’s antitrust division, is returning in July as a partner in the firm’s Washington office, to focus on global antitrust, litigation, and regulatory matters. (Compliance Week)

• Michael Jacobson, who left eBay Inc. last year after 17 years as its general counsel, is returning to Cooley , the firm said. (The Recorder)

• Vinson & Elkins said it hired five intellectual property litigators in Dallas and Austin, Texas, including a group of four who left Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld earlier this month, prompting Akin Gump to announce a shuttering of its Austin office. (Texas Lawyer)

• Shook Hardy & Bacon has elected its first female chair : pharmaceutical and medical device litigator Madeleine McDonough will take the reins of the Midwest-law firm on Jan. 1 2017. She succeeds John Murphy, who was chair for 15 years. (Big Law Business)


• The Orlando massacre could provide new fuel for debate over whether technology companies must help law enforcement unlock terrorist suspects’ encrypted phones. (Politico)

• Despite today’s rapidly evolving technology landscape, technological patents remain important for companies in litigation, fundraising and protecting their turf in other ways. (Legaltech News)

• In a new strategy aimed at eliminating cyber attacks, a computer security startup monitors compromised servers to see what tools and websites the hackers use, and then heads off future attacks. (New York Times)

• A New York Times editor explains his decision to close his Twitter account , with some 35,000 followers, after a barrage of anti-Semitic hate messages. (New York Times)

• The National Security Agency and probably other spy agencies worldwide are keen to know how much information they can get from a new generation of Internet-connected devices in homes and offices. (re/code)

• Hackers got into a CEO’s corporate account by scouring Facebook and LinkedIn for answers to six typical authentication questions that they then used to reset his password. (InformationWeek)

Legal Education

• Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law Monday announced that classes are cancelled for the Nov. 8 U.S. presidential election, making it the latest of a handful of schools to participate in a movement launched by two campus groups. (Big Law Business)

• The American Bar Association said it has begun random audits to verify graduate employment data provided by law schools, in the wake of student complaints that some schools are embellishing their statististics. (Law.com)

• A proposed rule would make it easier for students who borrowed money to pay for a fraudulent college education to sue “dodgy” schools and get their federal loans discharged, Education Secretary John B. King Jr. said Monday. (Wall Street Journal)


• Donald Trump, the presumed Republican nominee for president, has barred the Washington Post from his campaign and attacked Amazon.com for its “political agenda.” (Bloomberg)

Compiled by Rick Mitchell and edited by Gabe Friedman.

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