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Commentary

Practical Litigator: Employer negligence? Make sure the order spells it out

We all know that minor settlements need to be approved by a judge. But try and find the statute or case law requiring this exercise. Speaking objections cannot be made during depositions. But other than a handful of local rules that prohibit the use of speaking objections, try to find binding North Carolina case law or statutory authority that establishes such a rule. And so it is with the issue of employer negligence when plaintiffs move to reduce or strike a workers' compensation lien. Whenever lawyers discuss third-party workplace cases the first question in the conversation typically relates to the amount of the subrogation lien.

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Guest Commentary: Pitching an expedient white lie can create lasting skepticism

Anyone who has heard the tale of George Washington and his cherry tree knows well the damage dishonest acts inflict on credibility. As Roger Clemens may someday attest (or not), damage to credibility may not be the only risk in forsaking the truth. Instead, brazenly believing you can deceive an adversary may create a long-lasting detractor whose antipathy outweighs any lost credibility.

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Trial & Error: A kid’s review of John Grisham’s new legal thriller for kids

My seventh-grade daughter was hooked from the moment she opened the bright yellow cover of Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer, reminding me of myself when I devoured the adventures of Nancy Drew at her age. This week, I'm turning over my column to my daughter. Here is a 12-year-old's review of Grisham's new book, complete with her thoughts on the judicial system and what it takes to be a lawyer.

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Coach’s Corner: ‘Not proven’ is the constitutional key in criminal verdicts

By ED POLL, Special to Lawyers Weekly edpoll@lawbiz.com   Recent press reports have discussed the fact that Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong Foundation is suffering in its donation efforts because of the continuing controversy about allegations that Armstrong took banned substances while ...

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Coach’s Corner: Of priorities and consequences in the practice of law (access required)

I recently spoke with an executive whose company makes software to help lawyers record billable time. He discussed failure to record time as a "time leak," because time is lost (and therefore not billed) when an attorney fails to make contemporaneous notations of work being done. Surveys done by the company suggest that at least one in five timekeepers consistently fails to record time contemporaneously, and almost 80 percent record their time days or even weeks later.

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