Friday, October 21, 2016

Happy Friday


  • The Department of Labor sued a Las Vegas telemarketer for shorting worker pay. [RJ]
  • Animal cruelty charges for women running 'sanctuary' in Cold Creek, northwest of Las Vegas. [RJ]
  • First Amendment warrior Marc Randazza is hard at working protecting free speech in Nevada. Here's a look at the pleadings in a recent case where the Las Vegas Clark County Library District issued a notice of trespass to man trying to get a petition signed and to get people to register to vote before the deadline. The TRO lifting the notice to trespass was granted. 
  • A reader has a question regarding the unauthorized practice of law: "I read a lot of complaints about UPL and the problems it poses, but  I also see a lot of ads online for paralegals and legal assistants, and almost without exception, the ad lists requirements that seem to require either the ability to perform the jobs of attorneys, or damn close.  A national firm is looking for a paralegal who can: draft pleadings, including answers, complaints, discovery demands and motions.  Another firm looking for a paralegal who can handle everything from A to Z other than making court appearances and drafting complex motions.  Most request that the applicant be able to handle everything from case intake to drafting initial pleadings, motions, discovery and everything in between.

    So where is the line in the sand drawn?  Is it when the paralegal strikes out and does all of those things unsupervised, or when the law firm takes the paralegal's work product and bills it at the managing attorney's rate?"

33 comments:

  1. Considering you can apparently bill for the time of unpaid interns, I doubt passing along paralegal billing presents any issues. Problem is almost certainly when they strike out on their own and offer law services.

    http://www.thelawforlawyerstoday.com/2016/04/unpaid-legal-interns-can-be-billed-to-clients-as-fees-or-costs-ny-state-bar-assn-says/

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  2. Yes-- if the paralegal is not supervised by an attorney, that is a problem.

    Yes--if you are billing it as Partner Hours and it was done by the file clerk, that is a problem. Of course if you are billing it as Partner Hours and it was done by the receptionist, secretary, paralegal or associate, those are all also problems.

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  3. I have a discovery question, when you are serving discovery docs to party, do you have them on all parties, or just the party they are directed to?

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    1. NRCP 5(a) has your answer.
      "Except as otherwise provided in these rules, . . . every paper relating to discovery required to be served upon a party unless the court otherwise orders, . . . shall be served upon each of the parties."

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    2. Not many people do this.

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    3. Thank you. I did not normally serve everybody either.

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    4. Hmm..... I've always served them on the party from whom discovery is requested, other than subpoenas which I've done the notice of subpoena to all parties.

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    5. Without exception, always serve everything on everybody. 34 years of experience speaking.

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    6. 12:06, if you read NRCP 33(a) in isolation, it seems like you only need to serve the targeted party. But NRCP 5 tells you what the rules mean by "service," and that includes sending copies of everything to everyone else.

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    7. If an offer of judgment was served only on the offeree and not on all of the parties under NRCP 5(a), would it still be valid and enforceable?

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    8. I think there's some ambiguity when it comes to OJs, and NRCP 5(a). NRCP 5 says you serve OJs on all parties, but it's unclear whether that refers to the accepted offer, or both the initial and the accepted offer. To me, it doesn't really make sense for the initial OJ to be served on everyone.

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  4. Specifically, rogs, and requests?

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  5. Marc Randazza is a "go-to" lawyer in Nevada for First Amendment issues. He's on the front line of these issues and is passionate and smart about the Constitution. He's a legal patriot fighting for the rights of all citizens regardless of political affiliations. We need more lawyers like Marc.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Marc. When patting yourself on the back, how far down your back can you get?

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    2. Don't know if 11:16 am is Mr. Randazza; I am not, just a fan. I for one like the fact that Vegas has a national First Amendment "go to" lawyer. Along with Maggie McLetchie (I'm also not her), it's great that we have some attorneys in our local community like this (not just mindless sellouts like me ;-)

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    3. 11:16 is definitely not Marc. Not enough profanities. But completely agree with both 11:16 and 1:09.

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  6. Speaking of Halloween, who are the true hucksters on the bench? The creepy, the crawly, the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hydes of Judges. I got one in mind, but we can open up discussion:

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  7. I am going to order up, Hemo,darling, will you please get the Lionel Sawyer bankruptcy estate limo out, and go pick up Eric Johnson's Barney Rubble every day outfit.

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  8. About 2 or 3 times a year I get potential client who describes a massive paranoid delusion to me about the government following them, tapping their phones and poisoning them. They are usually veterans. I always recommend they voice their concerns to the VA -- which they refuse to do, because the VA is in on the evil. These people are all educated, and appear intelligent, but they need some serious help. I don't think it would do any good to tell them to knock it off because they are crazy -- but I don't want to fuel the delusion by lending credibility by sympathizing with their perceived plight.



    I cannot imagine they all come to me ... what do you guys do? Who do you refer them to?

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    1. I usually refer them to you.

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    2. Send them to C. Friedberg's office.

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    3. Okay, I think the blog ate my first reply. Apologies if I've posted this twice.

      This is a really tough situation, because a lot of the time mental health problems actively work against ability of the person with the diagnosis to get help. So, a guy with paranoid schizophrenia, might not be able to seek help because his disease is telling him that the mental health providers are out to get him or are part of the conspiracy. And while we see that it's a delusion, to him that's the reality he's living with every day. Plus, the stigma against mental illness means that people don't want to admit the might have one, and vets, in particular, have been taught that they have to be "tough" and can't admit to a weakness. So all that can work against getting help.

      I'd recommend starting with a reference to a vets support group with other vets. Hopefully being able to talk to other vets, gives the vet chance to talk about his problems, and develop a support system with other vets that he trusts who can eventually encourage him to seek help. HELP USA runs some good programs that help vets with housing, job training, and social services, etc. USA Vets has some good programs as well. Here at Nevada Legal Services, we have a veterans unit, dedicated exclusively to helping veterans with legal problems, although we mostly handle housing an benefit issues.

      Also, give the military's history with Agent Orange, Gulf War Syndrome, and contaminated water a Camp LeJeune, some of these issues may have a basis in fact. Sadly, some of our vets literally have been exposed to poisons during their service. And they may be entitled to compensation or VA benefits for that exposure. My veterans paralegals can help with the initial application and appeals for those benefits. (Free of charge, no income limits.)

      Insofar as we can be helpful, feel free to give us a call or email over at Nevada Legal Services. We may at least be able to steer you towards some resources.

      Kris Bergstrom
      kbergstrom@nlslaw.net

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    4. Thanks Kris. This is great information.

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    5. You might be surprised at how often employers have to deal with employees' untreated and very severe mental health issues.

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    6. Or how often the Employer themselves has untreated and very severe mental health issues. See Pengilly.

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  9. 2:26 for the Win!

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  10. Could it be Eric Johnson's chamber calling you for your support?

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  11. I think Joe Hardy would make a killer Count Chocolo, and Dave Barker would make a great Boo Berry.

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  12. That's really tough, because one of the difficult things about a mental health diagnosis like paranoid schizophrenia (or a lot of other mental health diagnoses) is that the disease actively works against the person suffering from it being able to seek help, because they don't trust any organization enough to ask for help. And for them, it's not a mental illness making them feel this way, it's their reality. Add that to the stigma that makes sufferers of mental illness reluctant to admit they have one plus the belief that veterans are supposed to be "tough" and not have problems and it can make it very difficult for these guys to get help.

    HELP USA has a very good program that provides social services, housing, and job placement for veterans. US Vets also does very good work. Here at Nevada Legal Services, we have a veterans unit that handles legal problems for veterans, although that's mostly focused on housing and benefits issues. If a client is reluctant to go to the VA, it might help if they go to to a support group with other veterans that's not affiliated with the VA (check with HELP USA and US Vets). That gives them a safe space to talk about their troubles with other vets, and hopefully gives them a support group that they trust who can encourage them to seek help.

    Finally, for some vets, the idea that the government is poisoning them might have had a basis in reality. Given the military's history with Agent Orange, Gulf War Syndrome, contaminated drinking water, some of these guys literally have been exposed to poisons as part of their service. If that's the case, they may have a claim for VA benefits for that exposure. Our paralegals can help them with the application process to get benefits, which may in turn lead to help for any mental health issues that pop up.

    And, insofar as I, or my unit, can be helpful, feel free to email or call us over at Nevada Legal Services. We can at least send some info on non-profit resources.

    Kris Bergstrom
    kbergstrom@nlslaw.org

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  13. Laughing, that is cute.

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  14. Ever filed or opposed an MIL like this?
    http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-trump-university-20161021-snap-story.html

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  15. Voted for Anat Levy.

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