This week's issue of The National Law Journal includes Tony Mauro's look at the six cases Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan has argued before the high court. Though her fellow Supreme Court advocates say she has been impressive during those arguments, she has made some rookie mistakes. Just two of the cases have been decided, giving the first female solicitor general a record thus far of one win and one loss.
Jenna Greene has filed a report on the Securities and Exchange Commission's new swagger after lodging a fraud complaint against The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. The agency is also seeing an across-the-board rise in enforcement activity. According to David Martin, who is co-head of Washington-based Covington & Burling's securities practice and previously served as director of the SEC's Corporation Finance Division, the agency has "a high sense of urgency in terms of delivering results."
BP PLC is facing many of its old foes in the rising litigation over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, reports Tresa Baldas. More than a dozen plaintiffs' firms pursuing BP, Transocean Ltd. and Halliburton Energy Services Inc. have a history of trying to make the defendants pay for safety violations and the resulting harm. But with plaintiffs lawyers filing complaints alleging wrongful death, personal injury, economic damages and environmental damages across a number of jurisdictions, the stakes this time around are much higher.
The National Law Journal also includes a special section on intellectual property, which features Sheri Qualters' profile of the next chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Randall Rader.
From Washington, Mike Scarcella reports that the Obama administration has struggled to fill — or keep filled — positions in the top ranks of the Justice Department. And with Solicitor General Elena Kagan being named Obama's pick to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens, the DOJ could soon see four key vacancies.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius has been slapped with a $9 million malpractice suit in D.C. Superior Court. That case, which was filed by former Morgan Lewis client BDO Seidman, has some of the largest firms in Washington pointing fingers at one another. Jeff Jeffrey reports that the lawsuit stems from Morgan Lewis' time as both outside counsel to BDO and adviser to the managers of the Tax Solutions Group, a BDO subsidiary. The Chicago-based accounting and consulting firm accuses Morgan Lewis of professional negligence, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud and constructive fraud.
In Inadmissible, a look at what D.C. spent to defend against the landmark Second Amendment case D.C. v. Heller; defendants in Wone case call for a bench trial; Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin, the so-called birther doctor faces trial; tax bill may become vehicle for approving two $1 billion civil settlements; D.C. Circuit Judge Merrick Garland returns to work; DOJ requests some redaction action; and Apple keeps the ITC busy.