Law Grads Sue Alma Maters For Millions In Tuition Refunds

Two lawsuits seeking class action status were filed against Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Michigan and New York Law School. The plaintiffs, who are all graduates of the defendant schools, seek $250 million from Cooley and $200 million from NYLS in tuition refunds, as well as other damages and reformed employment statistic reporting practices.

Both lawsuits state that the plaintiffs seek “to remedy a systemic, ongoing fraud that is ubiquitous in the legal education industry and threatens to leave a generation of law students in dire financial straits.”  Cooley, at about 1,000 students in each class year, is the biggest in the country. (via WSJ Law Blog)

The End of the Full Service Law Firm?

The Wired GC has a post about UK’s Legal Week reporting that mega-firm CMS Cameron McKenna was transferring its immigration practice to a specialty firm, Fragomen.

It’s breathtaking because CMS is honestly saying that some work that we could do, we’ve decided not to. Most large law firms never say this. When I see one referring work to another firm (absent a conflict), I can hear a thousand GCs falling off their Aeron chairs.

Is this the end of the full service law firm? Probably not. But it pushes the essential question for all managing partners: why be all things to everyone?

Will Gene Patents Impede Whole Genome Sequencing?

Chris Holman at Holman’s Biotech IP Blog, is writing an article about how there is a widely held perception that 20% of human genes are “patented” and that these patents preclude researchers and clinicians from using, studying or even “looking at” the patented genes without obtaining a license or risk being sued for patent infringement.

In the recent decision in the Myriad a gene patent case (AMP v. PTO), Judge Lourie repeats the assertion. Ultimately, if you trace the string of references back to their primary source, one arrives at the seminal article by Kyle Jensen & Fiona Murray: Intellectual Property Landscape of the Human Genome, 310 Science 239 (2005).

In fact, a careful reading of the supporting online material for the Jensen and Murray article reveals that their study has been grossly misinterpreted by those who claim the 20% of human genes are patented. In fact, those authors only purported to show that, with respect to 20% of human genes known at the time they conducted their study, either (1) the DNA sequence of the gene, or (2) the amino acid sequence encoded by the gene, was mentioned in a US patent claim. The myth that 20% of human genes are “patented” has taken root because too many have incorrectly inferred that the mere “mention” of a gene in a patent claim precludes all uses of the gene.

Fatal Mountain Goat Attack Sparks $10 Million In Wrongful Death Claims

The WSJ Law Blog reports that a local hiker in Olympic National Park was gored by a 370-pound mountain goat, according to Peninsula Daily News reports.  “I feel like they weren’t protecting people and the ecosystem, and…on the day of the accident, they responded very poorly to our calls for help,” the victim’s widow told the Peninsula Daily News.

When RARE is not so RARE!

At BIOtech Now, Nicole Boice, Founder/President, RARE Project, wants you know that there is a community of sick and disabled women, children, and men that is so large that it outnumbers all of those with cancer and AIDS combined worldwide.  The Rare Disease Community is made up of over 7,000 known rare diseases and over 350 million people worldwide.  Here in the US, over 35 million people are affected with the majority being our nation’s children.  The RARE Project™ has developed two initiatives; The Children’s Rare Disease Network™ (CRDN) and the Global Genes Project™ (GGP) to meet the needs of this community.

Should Bert and Ernie Get Married?

The New York Daily News reports that there’s an online petition with 700 signatures requesting a wedding for the two long-time, best friends. BettyConfidential thinks not:

Yes, there have been rumors that Bert and Ernie are gay. But, can we get real here? First of all, they’re muppets. Secondly, anytime two people, err muppets are close friends, the gay rumor pops up. Thirdly, who fanatasizes about muppet sex? And if you’re thinking about muppet sex, you have too much time on your hands and a possible issue with reality.

For their part, Sesame Street notes:  “Even though the Sesame Street Muppets … possess many human traits and characteristics, they have no sexual orientation.”

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One Comment

  1. You can tell Bert and Ernie aren’t gay… no self respecting gay person would wear the same clothing for 40+ years!