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Rees Morrison’s Morsels #147: posts longa, morsels breva

Academy of Court-Appointed Masters (ACAM). This organization “is composed of judges, attorneys, and a few non-attorney subject matter experts who are often called in to serve as special masters” in cases that have significant e-discovery issues. I read about ACAM and extracted this quote from Met. Corp. Counsel, March 2011 at 21 (See my post of July 26, 2008: e-discovery with 24 references.).

Retrodiction. No, it is not speech from yesteryear – retro diction. Retrodiction looks back and applies a theory to fit the past, which is chronologically the opposite of prediction which looks forward and says that something will come about. You can predict the next solar eclipse based on our theories from astronomy and you can retrodict that a solar eclipse changed the course of a battle millennia ago. Good benchmark metrics should be able to retrodict.

Can a general counsel straddle both law and business development simultaneously?
A general counsel in the UK described a “situation in a large company where the head of legal is head of business development.” What? In a company of size, how can the chief legal officer also lead the marketing team? That doesn’t make sense to me, yet the quote comes from “From in-house lawyer to business counsel,” by the UK law firm Nabarro at 7 (See my post of Jan. 29, 2009: role, scope and functions of legal departments with 8 metaposts and 19 references.).

Ethical or legal obligations of general counsel when told about a partner’s lateral move. No sooner had I written about this (See my post of April 7, 2011: no legal concerns for general counsel.), I read an article in the NYSBA J., March/April 2011 at 47, entitled “The Ethical Issues of Lateral Moves.” Barry Temkin focuses on the external lawyer’s concerns, but he does start with the client’s right to select counsel. Timkin differentiates between notification, which is expected, and solicitation, which is barred until the former firm knows about the resignation.

Wish we knew more about American Express’s redesign of its patent program. In the April 2011 issue of Practical Law, at 80, the profile of Amex’s long-time general counsel, Louise Parent, has a teaser. In a recent initiative, the 90-lawyer department undertook “the complete redesign of the way we manage our patent program and patent license revenue through strategic partnerships with external law firms as well as off-shore LPOs.”

Goodness! That a financial services company has enough patent activity that the General Counsel cites this initiative; that patent licensing – outbound, I presume – has such prominence; that the department crafted special arrangements with law firms regarding patent services; that offshore vendors supplement the effort: all cry out for more detail. In vain, as the squib quote is all we glean