• Archive for May, 2013

    Article and Symposium on Justice, Lawyering, and Legal Education in the Digital Age

    by  • May 31, 2013 • Faculty Scholarship, Faculty Workshops/ Conferences • 1 Comment

    How are innovators using cutting-edge technology to bring legal practice and education into the 21st century? Find out at a unique symposium titled “Justice, Lawyering and Legal Education in the Digital Age,” which will take place on June 15 in conjunction with this year’s CALI conference at Chicago-Kent.

    Chicago-Kent’s own Ron Staudt, professor and Director of the Center for Access to Justice & Technology (CAJT), will present an article at the symposium titled Access to Justice and Technology Clinics: A 4% Solution (co-authored with Andrew Medeiros, Access to Justice Fellow at CAJT). The article, which will be published alongside others from the symposium in an upcoming edition of the Chicago-Kent Law Review, outlines Professor Staudt’s Justice & Technology Practicum Course and his current A2J Clinic Project (additional information on the project here). Read the article abstract below:

    This article argues that law schools should add Access to Justice and Technology Clinics: a new type of clinical course that teaches law students how to use and deploy technology to assist law practice. If widely adopted, these clinics will help law students learn core competencies needed in an increasingly technological profession while simultaneously building tools and content to help low income, self-represented litigants overcome serious barriers in their pursuit of justice. In our prototype course at Chicago-Kent, Justice and Technology Practicum, students use A2J Author to build A2J Guided Interviews and in the process students learn legal research, writing and analysis, while also developing important skills such as project management and planning, collaboration, and empathy. In addition to teaching students how to use specific document assembly and automation tools, the course exposes students to an array of technology tools and skills, providing a better understanding of the transformative effect information technology has on the legal practice. Now through CALI’s Access to Justice Clinical Course Project, faculty at six other law schools are designing courses that will build on this experience to be shared with all CALI law schools.

    Click here for the full text of the article. In addition to Professor Staudt’s presentation, the A2J Clinical Course Project Faculty will discuss the development of automated law practice clinics using A2J Author®, the Clinic Project’s core software tool.

    Other symposium speakers will present on such diverse topics as “Gaming the System: Approaching 100% Access to Legal Services through Online Games,” “Teaching Law and Digital Age Law Practice with an AI and Law Seminar,” “The Law School as Knowledge Center in the Digital Age,” and “Reflections on the Future of Legal Education and on the Importance of Digital Expertise.” Click here for a full schedule of the presentations.

    Weekly Faculty in the News, 5/30

    by  • May 30, 2013 • Faculty in the News • 0 Comments

    A roundup of faculty appearances in news sources from the last week.

    5/27 The Faculty of Social Sciences at the European University of Madrid entered into an educational partnership with Chicago-Kent College of Law, enabling students from Madrid to take immersion courses in Chicago-Kent’s LL.M. Program in International and Comparative Law (“La Universidad Europea firma un convenio con el Chicago-Kent College Of Law“, in Spanish).

    5/28 – Dean Harold Krent was quoted in a Chicago Daily Law Bulletin story on the decision made by the Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar to delay raising the exam’s minimum passing score (“Board delays bar score hike to 2015”). Krent said that he was surprised at the original choice to raise the minimum passing score from 264 to 268 for the July exam and that he looks forward to more clarifying discussion between the Board and other law school deans.

    Schwartz — Proxy Patent Litigation

    by  • May 28, 2013 • Faculty Commentary • 0 Comments

    *UPDATE: Read Part 2 of Prof. Schwartz’s post on proxy patent litigation here.


    Professor David Schwartz continues his month of guest blogging at Concurring Opinions with a new post titled “Proxy Patent Litigation.” Read an excerpt from the post below:

    In the last decade or so, patent litigation in the United States has undergone enormous changes. Perhaps most profound is the rise in enforcement of patents held by people and entities who don’t make any products or otherwise participate in the marketplace. Some call these patent holders ‘non-practicing entities’ (NPEs), while others use the term ‘patent assertion entities’ (PAEs), and some pejoratively refer to some or all of these patent holders as ‘trolls.’ These outsiders come in many different flavors: individual inventors, universities, failed startups, and holding companies that own a patent or family of patents.

    This post is about a particular type of outsider that is relatively new: the mass patent aggregator.

    Click here to continue reading, and watch for part 2 of this post soon. Also, be sure to check out these additional posts from Prof. Schwartz’s guest series at Concurring Opinions: “The Varying Use of Legal Scholarship by the U.S. Supreme Court across Issues”, “Should Empirical Legal Scholars Have Special Responsibilities?”, “Software Patent Eligibility

    Shapiro on WLS Radio

    by  • May 24, 2013 • Faculty Commentary, Multimedia • 0 Comments

    Professor Carolyn Shapiro discusses IRS exempt organizations office director Lois Lerner’s short appearance before Congress and whether she waived her 5th amendment rights by giving an opening statement of innocence. Originally aired 5/23/2013 on WLS 890 AM Chicago.

    Weekly Faculty in the News, 5/23

    by  • May 23, 2013 • Faculty in the News • 0 Comments

    A roundup of faculty appearances in news sources from the last week.

    5/14 – Dean Harold Krent weighed in on the Justice Department’s seizure of Associated Press phone records in a CLTV story.

    5/16 – Professor Chris Buccafusco was interviewed by Fox 32 News (WFLD) in a story about a new breed of “copyright trolls” (“Porn copyright trolls: Pay up or we’ll tell your friends, family“). Follow the link for the full article and video.

    5/23 – Professor Carolyn Shapiro appeared on Chicago’s WLS Radio to discuss IRS official Lois Lerner’s recent decision to plead the Fifth before Congress in the ongoing IRS controversy. Listen to the interview here.

    Schwartz — The U.S. Supreme Court’s Use of Legal Scholarship

    by  • May 22, 2013 • Faculty Commentary, Faculty Scholarship • 0 Comments

    In his latest guest post at the legal blog Concurring Opinions (“The Varying Use of Legal Scholarship by the U.S. Supreme Court across Issues“), Professor David Schwartz presents his own extensive empirical research on the U.S. Supreme Court’s use of legal scholarship in order to “report some new information and ask readers for potential explanations of the data.” Read an excerpt from the post below:

    While patent law is my core area of scholarly interest, I have also studied the use of legal scholarship by the courts. My co-author Lee Petherbridge from Loyola-LA and I have conducted several comprehensive empirical studies using large datasets on the issue. More precisely, we have analyzed how often federal courts cite to law review articles in their decisions. We have empirically analyzed the issue from a variety of angles. We have studied the use of legal scholarship by the U.S. Supreme Court (available here), by the regional U.S. Courts of Appeals (study available here), and by the Federal Circuit (available here). . . .

    As part of our Supreme Court studies, we identified which Supreme Court decisions cited to legal scholarship in every case from 1946 until the end of the 2010 Supreme Court term. This includes almost 8,000 decisions. We supplemented our information about legal scholarship with data in the well-known Spaeth database, also known as the Supreme Court Database. Despite criticism of the Supreme Court Database by some (including my colleague Carolyn Shapiro here), the Supreme Court Database has been called the “gold standard” for political science research.

    Click here to continue reading, and don’t miss these other posts in Prof. Schwartz’s guest series at Concurring Opinions: “Should Empirical Legal Scholars Have Special Responsibilities?“, “Software Patent Eligibility


    *UPDATE: The Empirical Legal Studies blog also highlighted Professor Schwartz’s findings on the Supreme Court’s use of legal scholarship. Read the article here.

    What’s Going On at the Supreme Court?

    by  • May 21, 2013 • Faculty Commentary • 1 Comment

    By Carolyn Shapiro [via Oyez/ISCOTUSnow]


    Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued decisions in four cases.* All but one were unanimous as to result, and that one, City of Arlington v. FCC, though important in administrative law, is not a case most members of the public are likely to be following. This may lead some people to wonder what the Supreme Court is doing and when they will issue decisions in the big cases from this Term — the gay marriage cases (Perry and Windsor), the affirmative action case (Fisher), and the Voting Rights Act case (Shelby County), to name a few.

    The short answer is that the dispositions of these cases will almost certainly be announced before the end of June, when the Court goes into summer recess. I say “almost certainly” because there is at least one other, very remote, possibility: Occasionally a case is held over for reargument in the fall. This happened with Citizens United.

    At this time of year, the Court generally announces (or “hands down”) opinions on Mondays (next week it will be Tuesday due to Memorial Day), and it sometimes adds an additional hand-down days, usually Thursdays, towards the end of the Term. But the Court never announces ahead of time what opinions it will be issuing on a particular hand-down day. So between now and the end of June, every hand-down day has the potential to be a biggie.


    * Read Oyez’s overviews of the cases decided this week:
    – Sebelius v. Cloer
    – Metrish v. Lancaster
    – PPL Corporation v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue
    – City of Arlington, TX v. FCC

    ISCOTUSnow Weekly Roundup

    by  • May 17, 2013 • Multimedia • 0 Comments

    [Via ISCOTUSnow, 5/15/13]


    If you follow us on Twitter (@ISCOTUS) or Google+ or like us on Facebook (and we hope you will!), you’ll see regular postings about interesting news, commentary, and resources we’ve found around the web. But once a week, we’ll compile all of them into a single post for ISCOTUSnow.

    Justice Sotomayor: Just “Sonia from the Bronx?”

    Constitution USA on PBS with Peter Sagal

    Sandra Day O’Connor Day of Civic Learning Act

    Dahlia Lithwick wins 2013 National Magazine Award

    Supreme Court Confidential: PocketJustice app review

    What’s at stake in race cases this Term (more…)

    Chicago-Kent Research Paper Series No. 5.5

    by  • May 16, 2013 • Faculty Scholarship • 0 Comments

    The Chicago-Kent Research Paper Series (RPS) is an SSRN ejournal publication, distributed monthly, that highlights new abstracts, works in progress, and published articles by Chicago-Kent faculty.

    The latest edition (5.5) of the RPS was distributed on May 14. This edition includes the following articles:

    – Amicus Brief of Family Law Professors and AAML on the Merits of United States v. Windsor, by Katharine Baker

    – Chicago’s ‘Great Boodle Trial’ (book chapter in Then & Now: Stories of Law and Progress, 2013), by Todd Haugh

    – Retroactivity and Crack Sentencing Reform, by Harold Krent

    – Religious Institutions, Liberal States, and the Political Architecture of Overlapping Spheres (U. Ill. L. Rev., forthcoming), by Mark Rosen

    Click here to see the abstract page for the Series and to subscribe to the ejournal.

    Weekly Faculty in the News, 5/15

    by  • May 15, 2013 • Faculty in the News • 0 Comments

    A roundup of faculty appearances in news sources this week.

    5/7 – The Chicago Daily Law Bulletin highlighted Professor Steven Heyman’s April 25th lecture on the First Amendment, “To Drink the Cup of Fury: Funeral Picketing, Public Discourse, and the First Amendment.” The lecture, drawing on Professor Heyman’s 2012 article of the same name, analyzed the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Snyder v. Phelps, which upheld Westboro Baptist Church’s First Amendment right to picket the funeral of a soldier killed in Iraq.

    5/7 – Chicago-Kent’s Center for Access to Justice and Technology (CAJT), directed by Professor Ron Staudt, was highlighted with CALI in a post at Robert Ambrogi’s LawSites (“Mass. Courts Launch Self-Help Site for Child Support Cases“). The post reported that a new Massachusetts self-help legal resource utilizes CAJT’s guided-interview tool A2J Author.

    5/8 – Professor Steven Heyman was quoted in a Medill Reports story on the Illinois Terrorism Act and free speech (“Attorneys and activists say Illinois terrorism law is chilling free speech“).

    5/10 – Dean Harold Krent wrote an op-ed piece for the Orlando Sentinel about the implications of random drug testing in schools (“Random testing can send students a harmful message“).