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Author Archives: Diana Smith, Staff Writer

Still down, but not out

Business isn't bullish, but it's not barren, either. That's the most recent verdict handed down from leaders of the firms ranked in Big 25, Lawyers Weekly's annual survey of the state's largest law firms. Nationwide, the past three years were marked by doomsday headlines that reported floods of layoffs for both attorneys and staff at large firms as a result of the recession. Firms hunkered down by cutting costs, freezing summer programs and deferring starts for new associates. North Carolina's Big 25 weren't exempt, either.

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Senator urges more transparency on law school employment data

A high-profile voice has joined the call for the American Bar Association to change its rules for how law schools report employment and salary data to prospective students - a push for transparency that North Carolina educators welcome, especially given the increasing recognition that schools nationwide are fudging statistics to elevate their rankings. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., sent a letter to ABA President Stephen Zack on March 31 seeking a "detailed summary" of the organization's plans to implement reforms.

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Discipline should focus more on clients’ freedom than cash

Holly Bryan is the president of the North Carolina Association of Women Attorneys and a career counselor for the University of North Carolina School of Law in Chapel Hill. At UNC, she helps students and alumni with all aspects of job searching and career development, with a focus on examining government and alternative careers. She also has a special interest in issues that affect women in the legal world.

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Frustrations are a chance to improve communication skills

Dr. Lori Meyerhoffer is an attorney with Yates, McLamb & Weyher in Raleigh. Also trained as a physician, Meyerhoffer focuses her practice on medical-malpractice defense and medical and nursing board defense. Meyerhoffer began her professional life as an optometrist, graduating valedictorian from the University of Houston in 1990. She went on to receive her M.D. from the University of South Florida College of Medicine and, after nearly 10 years of active practice, decided to pursue a law degree from the University of North Carolina School of Law.

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Constitutional-First Impression – Ballot Access – Fundamental Rights – No Severe Burden – Lower Scrutiny

Libertarian Party of North Carolina v. State. In order for a small political party to gain access to statewide ballots, G.S. § 163-96(a)(2) requires such parties to obtain the signatures equal to two percent of the number of voters in the preceding gubernatorial election. This requirement does not violate our state constitution's ...

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NC Business Court enters new era as its founding judge retires

No hostile takeovers were involved, but the North Carolina Business Court has already experienced quite a shakeup in the year's first quarter. In just three months, two-thirds of the leadership on the court has changed, bringing "fresh blood" to the 15-year-old institution, said founding Judge Ben Tennille, who retired March 1. In January, the three-judge court welcomed a new jurist in Calvin E. Murphy of Charlotte. That same month, Judge John R. Jolly Jr. (pictured) was appointed chief special superior court judge of the Business Court after Tennille announced his departure.

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