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Messages - jonlevy

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Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: December 01, 2011, 06:18:08 PM »
Nope, I have a PhD in Political Science and a JD from Taft. I want to move over to a law faculty which I am working on a LLD.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: Expunged Records
« on: December 01, 2011, 01:27:58 PM »
If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there.....

Advances in information technology mean that records expunged in the last 20 years may well leave public traces that could be a problem. Regardless of state law, I'd want to be sure that a simple Google or Lexis Public Information search is not going to turn up dirt. If that is the case, better to explain it in advance then get whacked for the far more serious issues of lying on a school or bar form.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: Expunged Records
« on: December 01, 2011, 01:23:22 PM »
If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there.....

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: December 01, 2011, 01:22:11 PM »
just out of curiosity where do you teach? I ask since I think it's cool we have an actual Prof here.  8)

Kaplan University, MSLS (Legal Studies) and MPA (Public Administration) programs
Norwich University Master of Arts in Diplomacy (MDY) program

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 30, 2011, 09:51:04 AM »
The problem was not with the law degree but that the federal bars in California are being sued for refusing to admit out of state attorneys who are not members of the California Bar. I am a member of the Cal Bar but live out of state, and am a member of some of the local federal bars. The Judges however saw my out of state address on the pleadings and tried to retaliate even though my Cal Bar number was on the pleadings and I am in their databases as a fed bar member.

Each US District Court in the US sets it own admission requirements, has nothing to do with the ABA but everything to do with state bar membership. Only a few let everyone become members without restrictions - notably USDC North Dakota and Northern District of Illinois (Chicago),  most of the rest have limited or no reciprocity. The NAAMP pleading was misleading on that issue - shows a lot of green states that have reciprocity when that really is not the case. For exampme New York federal courts keep out everyone except NY, Conneticut and Vermont bar members, the NAAMP map makes it look like there is total reciprocity.

The US Courts of Appeal and Article One courts on the other hand usually admit everyone subject to varying hoops to jump through as does the US Supreme Court.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 29, 2011, 11:18:49 PM »
It has nothing to do with standards, if an attorney passes any bar and then practices for three years without any trouble, they should be free to motion into any state without a bar exam provided there are no other issues.  The problem however is that the vast majority of state bars will never recognize a non ABA graduate no matter how many years practice they have. The exception is DC which permits all attorneys with 5 years experience and a clean record to motion into the bar.  I have long advocated that California should have complete reciprocity with DC, that is any lawyer with 5 years practice in DC should be permitted to join the California bar without an exam.  I am however opposed to letting in attorneys without a bar exam from states who would keep out non ABA California lawyers. Unfortunately, the California Bar is moribound and cannot even get bar dues bills signed timely by the Governor some years.

The situation has gotten so bad after the lawsuits filed that California Federal Court Judges in the Central and Northern Districts have tried to sanction me because I have an out of state address even though I am a member of their bars.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 29, 2011, 10:21:58 PM »
US Sued Over Calif. Out-Of-State Atty Rules

By Maria Chutchian

Law360, New York (November 14, 2011, 7:07 PM ET) -- The National Association for the Advancement of Multijurisdiction Practice on Thursday launched its second complaint in the past month seeking the elimination of California rules denying out-of-state lawyers general bar admission privileges.

In a complaint filed against the U.S., President Barack Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, the Ninth Circuit and its justices, the U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Eastern, Central and Southern Districts of California and their judges, the NAAMJP asserts that the U.S. district court "local rules" that deny them equal opportunity to gain bar admission in the state violate several federal laws.

The suit comes on the heels of a similar one filed in October, in which the advocates for multijurisdictional legal practice launched allegations against California's Supreme Court seeking to overturn the state's ban on practicing in state courts by out-of-state attorneys who haven't been admitted to California's bar.

In Thursday's lawsuit, the association claims the rules elevate state law over federal law in violation of the Rules Enabling Act, the supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution, the First and Sixth Amendments, the equal protection clause, and prior U.S. Supreme Court decisions.

"[The local rules] correspondingly shrink and abridge the substantive rights of [the] plaintiffs and all American citizens to choose their own counsel in a designated United States public forum," the complaint said.

It added that the local rules stigmatize and discriminate against out-of-state attorneys, constituting "a wall of financial protection and [providing] California licensed attorneys with a monopoly."

The association is seeking declaratory judgment invalidating all U.S. district court local rules in the Ninth Circuit that deny them and other licensed attorneys District Court general bar admission privileges and an order admitting the plaintiffs to the California bar.

The NAAMJP pointed to several other national legal associations that support "on motion" bar admission — not requiring another state bar examination — for every state.

The complaint said the American Bar Association has recommended that the policy of restricting practice privileges to lawyers who are admitted to the state bar in which the district is located should be abolished.

It also said the ABA Multijurisdictional Practice Commission concluded that states that do not have reciprocal admission on motion injure the public by limiting access to experienced attorneys.

In addition, the suit pointed to the ABA Commission on Ethics 20/20, which it said came to a recent conclusion that the ABA should adopt amendments to the rule on admission by motion that would allow all lawyers to qualify for admission by motion with three years of experience.


A representative for the Ninth Circuit declined to comment.

The NAAMJP and its fellow plaintiffs are represented by Jeffrey Martin Ginsberg.

The case is National Association for the Advancement of Multijurisdiction Practice et al. v. USA et al., case number 4:11-cv-05481, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

--Additional reporting by Keith Goldberg. Editing by Kat Laskowski.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 29, 2011, 01:14:25 PM »
I agree, DETC is of no help with bars but does make a difference iyou want to use the JD for academic purposes.

I checked with the New Mexico peititioner, their app. is still tied up with red tape. They are contemplating going to the NM Supreme Court.

Taft alumni are members of multiple bars, Taft could do better to keep track.

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 28, 2011, 02:30:56 PM »
I read this case a little while back.  Ross Mitchell passed the MA bar exam and is working in MA. 

I think that most states will allow someone with an online law school degree to sit for their exam on a case by case basis.  I think that getting published on legal analytical topics is one of the best ways out there that shows them what you can do.  Even ABA law school grads submit a sample of their writing to government agencies and some of the top law firms.  It will not be easy.  But, it is not impossible to get the green light to sit for a bar exam after earning a law degree online.

In theory you are correct, in practice I suspect most petitions falter on the ABA bull:

Mitchell is cited in only one other case by the way:

Nevertheless,  [*13]  the Legislature has conferred upon this Court “exclusive jurisdiction to regulate the admission of persons to the practice of law,” 4 V.I.C. § 32(e), as well as the right to “adopt … the rules for admissions to and governance of the Virgin Islands Bar.” 4 V.I.C. § 32(f)(2). Courts vested with this same power in other jurisdictions have generally held that “the power to waive rules governing admission to the bar can be implied from [the] authority to promulgate such rules… .” Application of Urie, 617 P.2d 505, 510 (Alaska 1980). See also Mitchell v. Board of Bar Exam'rs, 452 Mass. 582, 897 N.E.2d 7, 10 (Mass. 2008) (“This court has the equitable power to waive a particular requirement of a court rule concerning admission to the bar.”) (citing Matter of Tocci, 413 Mass. 542, 600 N.E.2d 577 (Mass. 1992)); Application of Collins-Bazant, 254 Neb. 614, 578 N.W.2d 38, 42 (Neb. 1998) (“This Court has the power to waive the application of its own rules regarding the admission of attorneys to the Nebraska bar.”); Matter of Schmidt, 100 Idaho 729, 604 P.2d 1208, 1209 (Idaho 1980)

Distance Education Law Schools / Re: distance learning
« on: November 28, 2011, 02:07:25 PM »
Here is another DL law school grad who practices outside California:

James Rice - graduated Taft Law School in Feb 2001, -- admitted to the California Bar in June 2001, -- and admitted to the Idaho Bar in April 2002,  Had an email chat with him recently to get is perspective.  Said he petitioned the State for a waiver to take the bar; they granted it without problem.

So yes, people, it can be done.  And I suspect it has been done more often than most of us know.

I supported another Taft grad's petition to New Mexico, last I heard it got bogged down but I'll check with him.

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