Lawyers Are Doomed

     Wow!
     I’m impressed.
     At least I was impressed for a few minutes by this press release pronouncement last week:
     “LAS VEGAS, May 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — The Las Vegas Defense Group, a criminal defense law firm that defends clients against DUI and other criminal charges, announced that Las Vegas criminal defense attorney Michael Becker is the only attorney in the U.S. with a perfect 100 rating on Lawyer.com.”
     This is amazing, I thought. A perfect 100 and this guy in Vegas is the only lawyer in the entire country to achieve this feat!
     What kind of stud is this guy?
     I had to check out Lawyer.com to find out more.
     Sure enough. Michael Becker does indeed have 100 out of 100 LawPoints.
     Again, pretty impressive.
     But what, pray tell, are these LawPoints?
     This is from the Lawyer.com website:
     “LawPoints distinguish how much content a Lawyer has on their Profile; the more content a lawyer provides, the higher their LawPoints will be.”
     Before you scoff and think that all this guy did was fill out forms and/or hype himself better than anyone else, you should know that there’s more to it.
     You can also increase LawPoints by buying a Lawyer.com premium membership.
     So if you need an attorney who can completely fill out any form and is willing to pay for more forms, Michael Becker is your man.
     You’ve got to be impressed.
     
     Gay nonmarriage: Here’s a riddle for you: Why would a gay person insist that his/her relationship is not as legally binding as a heterosexual relationship?
     Think about it.
     For the answer, check out a ruling from the Virginia Supreme Court called Luttrell v. Cucco in which a woman (or her lawyer) argued that her cohabitation with another woman did not have the same legal effect that cohabitating with a man would have.
     The effect she was trying to avoid was termination of spousal support from her male ex-husband.
     Sometimes there are downsides to equal rights.
     A couple of lower courts decided that spousal support termination was only for a man and a woman, but the Virginia Supreme Court disagreed.
     Social progress continues.
     
     Favorite half-sentence of the week: This is from a Louisiana Court of Appeal ruling called Town of Arcadia v. Arcadia Chamber of Commerce: “The court gently upbraided the parties (‘I’m appalled that this lawsuit was ever even filed’) …”
     Now I want to see what passes for rough upbraiding in Louisiana.
     In case you’re wondering, the upbraiding was brought about by litigation over whether a memorial wall should have been moved from next to a train museum to a new courthouse.
     The courthouse won. Should we be surprised?
     
     Our days are numbered: A couple of weeks ago I warned you that technology was going to take away all our jobs.
     It’s now time for lawyers to get nervous.
     A company called ROSS last week announced a “partnership” with BakerHostetler.
     “With the support of Watson’s cognitive computing and natural language processing capabilities, lawyers ask ROSS their research question in natural language, as they would a person, then ROSS reads through the law, gathers evidence, draws inferences and returns highly relevant, evidence-based candidate answers.”
     Not much left for lawyers to do.
     Humanity is doomed.

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