Access to Justice

  • April 19, 2024

    Shook Hardy Mass Tort Pros Help Nix Pa. Murder Convictions

    Deep experience dealing with expert testimony on complex scientific evidence and local knowledge of the Philadelphia suburbs made Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP partners John Lyons and David Haase a perfect fit for the team that recently helped vacate the decades-old convictions of three men accused of murdering a 70-year-old woman.

  • April 19, 2024

    How Attys Are Helping DC Residents Keep Family Homes

    As homeownership rates among Black residents have fallen in the nation's capital, a new initiative aims to provide legal counsel to people living in homes that were passed down through the generations but don't have clear titles.

  • April 18, 2024

    NYC Bar Rips Hochul Plan To Divert Client Trust Interest Cash

    The New York City Bar Association urged Gov. Kathy Hochul Thursday to reconsider her "eleventh-hour" renewed plan to divert $55 million in interest earned on lawyer trust accounts that typically goes toward legal aid for low-income New Yorkers, saying the "deeply troubling" move undermines the independence of the legal profession.

  • April 18, 2024

    BYU Law Students Develop 2 Access-To-Justice Tools

    Brigham Young University Law School announced this week the development of two new legal technology solutions, one intended to make assigning community service more efficient and the other used to generate divorce documents.

  • April 17, 2024

    'It Has To End': Justices Mull Finality In 32-Year Murder Saga

    In its second review of drug-fueled, baseball bat killings during the presidency of George H.W. Bush, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday pondered steering an Arizona man's capital punishment challenge toward conclusion, perhaps by handling evidentiary tasks normally left to lower courts.

  • April 17, 2024

    Sentencing Commission Limits Acquitted Conduct Sentencing

    The U.S. Sentencing Commission on Wednesday voted to restrict the controversial practice of considering acquitted conduct in federal sentencing, and floated the possibility of applying the change retroactively.

  • April 17, 2024

    Justices Rule Criminal Forfeiture Deadline Isn't Absolute

    The U.S. Supreme Court held Wednesday that courts can issue forfeiture orders at sentencing in criminal cases even if prosecutors fail to submit a draft request prior to the court-ordered date, ruling noncompliance with the rule doesn't strip judges of the authority to direct defendants to hand over ill-gotten gains.

  • April 15, 2024

    Justices Wary Of Strict Limit On Malicious Prosecution Cases

    Several U.S. Supreme Court justices appeared open Monday to the idea that a charge made without probable cause can be grounds for a malicious prosecution civil suit even if another charge with valid probable cause accompanied it, but without a clear consensus on a precise boundary.

  • April 15, 2024

    Sotomayor, Jackson Dissent As Court Rejects Capital Cases

    In a pair of dissents, Justices Ketanji Brown Jackson and Sonia Sotomayor on Monday broke with a majority of their colleagues on the U.S. Supreme Court who declined to hear two death penalty cases.

  • April 11, 2024

    Prison Racial Gap Narrowing, No Thanks To Reforms, Study Says

    A wide range of changes to criminal sentencing laws that most states have adopted in the last two decades did not play a major role in the reduction of Black-white disparity in imprisonment seen between 2000 and 2020, according to a study released Thursday by the Council on Criminal Justice.

  • April 10, 2024

    No Damages After Drug Lab Scandal Sinks Case, Court Says

    A Massachusetts man is not entitled to compensation from a fund for exonerees after his 2006 heroin distribution conviction was among thousands of drug cases vacated due to misconduct by a chemist at the state crime lab, an intermediate appeals court said Wednesday.

  • April 09, 2024

    Mo. Gets OK To Execute Man Repped By Flat-Fee Lawyers

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to halt the looming execution of a convicted murderer who claimed that his attorneys' flat-fee contracts incentivized them to push him to plead guilty before they secured promises from prosecutors not to pursue a death sentence.

  • April 08, 2024

    Calif. Legal Aid Group Leader On Fighting For Those With HIV

    Matt Foreman, the new executive director of San Francisco's AIDS Legal Referral Panel, talks with Law360 Pulse to discuss the ongoing challenges faced by people living with HIV and how the organization assists them.

  • April 05, 2024

    Flat-Fee Representation Fuels Man's Bid To Avoid Execution

    As his execution date approaches on April 9, Brian Joseph Dorsey, who was sentenced to death for first-degree murder in Missouri, has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to find that his trial attorneys' flat-flee contracts resulted in inadequate legal representation that has left him doomed to die.

  • April 05, 2024

    Study Shines Light On Excessive NY Prison Sentences

    A recent report shining a light on excessive felony prison sentences handed down by more than 140 trial judges in New York over a 16-year period has experts and advocacy groups calling for increased transparency to help ensure that courts are imposing fair penalties on criminal defendants in the Empire State.

  • April 04, 2024

    New Leader Discusses The Next Era For NY Federal Defenders

    The Federal Defenders of New York has chosen its new leader, elevating its director of strategic litigation to become the first Black woman serving as the federal public defense organization's executive director.

  • April 01, 2024

    BOP Drops Accreditation Org After IG, Sens. Raise Concerns

    The Federal Bureau of Prisons has let its $2.75 million contract with its accreditation organization expire, after a group of Democratic lawmakers and the bureau's watchdog raised concerns that the group wasn't effective or objective.

  • March 27, 2024

    Associates Help Ga. Prisoner Beat The Odds In Court

    When a team of mostly associates at Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Bondurant Mixson & Elmore LLP took on the civil case of a Georgia prisoner who had developed stage 4 hepatitis C as he waited five years for prescribed treatment, they expected they'd have their work cut out for them.

  • March 26, 2024

    'Landmark' Trans Women Prison Housing Deal Gets Final OK

    A Colorado state judge on Tuesday approved a consent decree between the state and a class of transgender women who sued over dangerous housing conditions in state prisons and now hope the plan to accommodate their needs will spread to other states.

  • March 25, 2024

    Justices Nix Lenient Drug Sentence After 'Safety Valve' Ruling

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday vacated a 100-month sentence given to a woman who pled guilty to drug offenses and remanded the case to the Fourth Circuit after the justices recently clarified which defendants qualify for "safety valve" relief under a 2018 federal law.

  • March 22, 2024

    MoFo Helps Secure $2B For Calif.'s Forgotten Students

    Morrison & Foerster recently helped nab a historic $2 billion settlement to help roughly a million California students — disproportionately from Black, Latino and lower-income families — who say the state failed to provide them meaningful instruction once the COVID-19 pandemic began.

  • March 22, 2024

    Milbank Pro Bono Counsel On Leading By Example

    Milbank LLP attorneys logged more than 54,000 hours of pro bono work across the firm's 12 offices worldwide in 2023, with 96% of its lawyers in the U.S. volunteering their time. According to Anthony Perez Cassino, the firm's pro bono counsel, it's a commitment to public service work that starts at the top.

  • March 20, 2024

    Study Sees Promise For Gen AI Tools In Closing Justice Gap

    Widespread access to generative artificial intelligence tools could help increase access to justice for low-income Americans, according to a new study that found these tools largely boosted productivity for legal aid lawyers.

  • March 20, 2024

    US Senators Seek Clemency For Native American Activist

    A group of mostly Democratic senators is urging U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to release compassionately a Native American activist who is serving a life sentence for his alleged involvement in the 1975 murder of two FBI agents, saying he is suffering from severe health conditions and should be able to live out his remaining days among his own people.

  • March 18, 2024

    Connecticut Exonerees Ask Lawmakers For Help After Prison

    The Connecticut Legislature's joint judiciary committee is considering sweeping changes to the way the state compensates exonerated convicts, and three men who each served more than 18 years in prison urged lawmakers Monday to make one edit that would apply the bill to pending state-level claims.

Expert Analysis

  • Advocating For Disability Rights In Probation And Parole

    Author Photo

    While the U.S. continues to over-police people with disabilities, defense attorneys can play a crucial role in ensuring that clients with disabilities who are on probation or parole have access to the accommodations they need and to which they are legally entitled, says Allison Frankel at the ACLU.

  • 11th Circ. Block Of 'Stop WOKE' Act Is Good For Public Safety

    Author Photo

    The Eleventh Circuit’s recent decision to uphold an injunction of Florida’s so-called Stop WOKE Act, a law that curtails workplace diversity training, means that law enforcement can continue receiving such training — an essential step toward more equitable policing and public safety, say Miriam Krinsky at Fair and Just Prosecution and Diane Goldstein at Law Enforcement Action Partnership.

  • Prosecutors' Growing Case Backlogs Need Urgent Attention

    Author Photo

    Growing case backlogs in prosecutors' offices around the country affect the functioning of the entire criminal legal system, so the problem's root causes must be immediately addressed, say Minnesota county prosecutor John Choi and Montana county prosecutor Audrey Cromwell.

  • Context Is Everything In Justices' Sentencing Relief Decision

    Author Photo

    In the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent Pulsifer v. U.S. decision, limiting the number of drug offenders eligible for sentencing relief, the majority and dissent adopted very different contextual frames for interpreting the meaning of “and” — with the practical impact being that thousands more defendants will be subject to severe mandatory minimums, says Douglas Berman at Moritz College of Law​​​​​​​.

  • Passing The HALT Fentanyl Act Will Repeat Past Mistakes

    Author Photo

    The war on drugs has failed, with overdose deaths at an all-time high despite decades of criminalization, so lawmakers should vote no on the HALT Fentanyl Act's proposal to impose lengthy mandatory minimum sentences for fentanyl-related drug offenses, says Liz Komar at The Sentencing Project.

  • Behind The Unique Hurdles Of Rural Access To Justice

    Author Photo

    While rural access to justice has become conflated with access to lawyers, the two are not synonymous, and in order to solve both issues, it is critical to further examine the role and impact of resident attorneys in these communities, say Daria Fisher Page and Brian Farrell at the University of Iowa College of Law.

  • Compassionate Release Grants Needed Now More Than Ever

    Author Photo

    After the U.S. Sentencing Commission's recent expansion of the criteria for determining compassionate release eligibility, courts should grant such motions more frequently in light of the inherently dangerous conditions presented by increasingly understaffed and overpopulated federal prisons, say Alan Ellis and Mark Allenbaugh at the Law Offices of Alan Ellis.

  • Justices' Double Jeopardy Ruling Preserves Acquittal Sanctity

    Author Photo

    The U.S. Supreme Court’s unanimous decision last week in McElrath v. Georgia, barring the state from retrying a man acquitted of murder after a so-called repugnant verdict, is significant in the tangled web of double jeopardy jurisprudence for its brief and unequivocal protection of an acquittal’s finality, says Lissa Griffin at Pace Law School.

  • NY Must Address Urgent Need For Immigration Legal Aid

    Author Photo

    The recent influx of migrants to New York has exposed the urgent need for state legislators to make a long-term investment in sustainable immigration legal services infrastructure, supervision and training, say Marielena Hincapié and Stephen Yale-Loehr at Cornell Law.

  • 911 Call Scrutiny Should Not Be Used To Identify Suspects

    Author Photo

    Though the use of 911 call analysis to identify suspects continues to spread across the country, this scientifically unproven method opens the door to wrongful convictions, so prosecutors should review investigations that relied on the technique, and lawmakers should ban it nationwide, say Miriam Krinsky at Fair and Just Prosecution and Isabelle Cohn at the Innocence Project.

  • 6 Practice Pointers For Pro Bono Immigration Practice

    Author Photo

    An attorney taking on their first pro bono immigration matter may find the law and procedures beguiling, but understanding key deadlines, the significance of individual immigration judges' rules and specialized aspects of the practice can help avoid common missteps, says Steven Malm at Haynes Boone.

  • 8th Circ. Redistricting Ruling Imperils The Voting Rights Act

    Author Photo

    The Eighth Circuit’s recent ruling in Arkansas NAACP v. Arkansas Board of Apportionment, holding that private plaintiffs don't have standing to sue in redistricting cases, creates a circuit split, and, if upheld, would nearly destroy the Voting Rights Act, says William Brewer at Brewer Storefront.

  • Justices May Clarify Expert Witness Confrontation Confusion

    Author Photo

    After oral arguments in Smith v. Arizona, the U.S. Supreme Court seems poised to hold that expert witness opinions that rely on out-of-court testimonial statements for their factual basis are unconstitutional, thus resolving some of the complications created by the court’s confrontation clause jurisprudence, says Richard Friedman at the University of Michigan Law School.

  • Immigration Detention Should Offer Universal Legal Counsel

    Author Photo

    Given the large backlog of immigration court cases and the more than 70% of people in immigration detention without counsel in 2023, the system should establish a universal right to federally funded representation for anyone facing deportation, similar to the public defender model, say Laura Lunn and Shaleen Morales at the Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network.

  • UX Research And Design Is Crucial For Justice Technologies

    Author Photo

    It’s essential that new access-to-justice digital tools incorporate user experience research and design methodologies to enhance access and accessibility, improve efficiency in processes and service delivery, and reduce risk, says Sarah Mauet at Innovation for Justice.

Hello! I'm Law360's automated support bot.

How can I help you today?

For example, you can type:
  • I forgot my password
  • I took a free trial but didn't get a verification email
  • How do I sign up for a newsletter?
Ask a question!