April 2019

April 2019 Cover

Technology makes lawyers more efficient, but lawyers must remember to consider the ethics rules when implementing systems and office procedures to manage client information and data protection.


Articles in this Issue

  1. Affiliate News

    What events are NACDL affiliates hosting this month? Find out here.

    Gerald Lippert

  2. Appellate Advocacy: Testing—and Mostly Rejecting—the Folk Wisdom of the Effective Appellate Brief

    A great deal of folk wisdom surrounds the characteristics of a successful appellate brief. It is said that shorter briefs and fewer issues lead to greater appellate success. One of the “gurus” of legal writing recommended that issue statements not exceed 75 words. Some claim that simple, short arguments are more effective than longer ones. Many attorneys believe that an appellant who files a reply brief will be more successful than an appellant who does not. Several hypotheses arising from all this advice have been tested. The results call into question most of the folk wisdom.

    Steven R. Morrison

  3. Book Review: Habeas Data by Cyrus Farivar

    This month Ian Nawalinski reviews Habeas Data by Cyrus Farivar.

    Ian Nawalinski

  4. Book Review: The One-Eyed Judge by Michael Ponsor

    This month Gail Gianasi Natale reviews The One-Eyed Judge by Michael Ponsor.

    Gail Gianasi Natale

  5. Criminal Forfeiture Case Law Updates

    Asset forfeiture – also called “policing for profit” – has come under scrutiny from courts and legislatures. Elliot Abrams provides defense lawyers with recent updates to forfeiture law, primarily focusing on pretrial seizure and attorney’s fees. Courts are taking a hard look at forfeiture and pretrial seizures, and lawyers should continue bringing statutory challenges to actions that appear to violate statutory language or a defendant’s fundamental rights.

    Elliot Abrams

  6. Current Report on Recording Custodial Interrogations in the United States

    Twenty-six states and the District of Columbia have statutory, judicial, or self-imposed requirements that police questioning of arrested persons held in custody must be electronically recorded.

    Thomas P. Sullivan

  7. From the President: In Defense of the Defense of the Unpopular Defendant

    Rehashing the Same Old Arguments Regarding Constitutional and Morally Mandated Advocacy in the 2019 Era of the Hashtag

    People often express their displeasure when a defense attorney represents an unpopular defendant. These people need to be reminded about the Sixth Amendment and the Fourteenth Amendment.

    Drew Findling

  8. Getting Scholarship Into Court Project

    The “Getting Scholarship Into Court Project” brings helpful law review articles and other writings to the attention of criminal defense attorneys. The project’s purpose is to identify scholarship that will be especially useful to courts and practitioners. Summarized on this page are articles the project’s advisory board recommends that practicing lawyers take the time to read. 

    Getting Scholarship Into Court Project

  9. Hiding in Plain Sight: Obtaining Insurance Coverage in White Collar Criminal Investigations

    When a white collar client calls an attorney upon receiving a subpoena and says he is afraid he cannot afford the attorney’s services, the attorney’s reaction need not be to refer the client to another law firm. Companies that own liability policies may not realize that they can look to that source for coverage of defense costs, expert fees, and other related litigation costs. What constitutes a claim? How should the company notify the insurer? Who is the insured? What will trigger an exclusion? The devil is in the policy details.

    Douglas K. Rosenblum and Marc S. Raspanti

  10. NACDL News: NACDL Board Adopts Policy Resolutions at Midwinter Meeting in Phoenix

    NACDL News April 2019

    Ivan J. Dominguez and Ian Nawalinski

  11. NACDL News: NACDL Demands Investigation into the ‘Inhumane and Cruel’ Conditions

    NACDL News April 2019

    Ivan J. Dominguez and Ian Nawalinski

  12. NACDL News: NACDL Unveils Mobile Text Alerts to Bolster Advocacy

    NACDL News April 2019

    Ivan J. Dominguez and Ian Nawalinski

  13. Practice Points: The Self-Serving Cooperator: Now More Suspect Than Ever

    The president and members of Congress have started to criticize the use of cooperating witnesses. Defense lawyers have an opportunity to identify skeptical jurors who do not believe anything that cooperating witnesses say and to mount attacks on these witnesses in every case.

    Drew Findling

  14. The Ethical Use of Technology: Protecting You and Your Clients

    Technology, including mobile devices and cloud computing, makes some law office tasks easier, but easier is not synonymous with ethical. Internal procedures and individually managed protections are important for safeguarding client confidentiality. However, attorneys must always consider the Rules of Professional Conduct when implementing systems and procedures to manage client information.

    Steven Oberman