Always a good day when we get the new year’s O’Connor’s Federal rulebook in. Especially when it’s a blue cover year. I have been editing this publication for 19 years now, but it’s always a thrill to actually see the new edition.
That having been said, I have already gotten one complaint about how thick the thing is this year, but that’s the unavoidable result of federal courts and Congress continuing to churn out caselaw and laws. In fairness, there were no new laws from Congress affecting civil litigation in the past year, but lots of caselaw, including cases applying the extensive December 2015 amendments to the FRCPs which, along other things, substantially revised the scope of discovery in federal court.
And, finally, the new edition has a current photo of me on the back cover – I got tired of trying to convince people that the young, skinny guy on the back cover was me. So no, that’s not my dad – it’s just not 2005 any longer.
The book includes 929 pages of commentaries, followed by annotated FRCP, FRE, FRAP, MDL rules, relevant advisory committee notes and 28 USC sections. And for copies sold in Texas, the book includes the local rules for all four Texas federal courts, including EDTX. It doesn’t have local patent rules or judges’ standing orders or forms, but those are available on the EDTX website.
I’ve been using O’Connor’s since the state book came out in 1991 – and was immediately banned for use in Practice Court at Baylor because it made finding answers to Prof. Muldrow’s questions on civil procedure too easy. In fact that first edition is still on my desk today. Although strictly speaking it’s not there for its legal content, it is a reminder of how attached some of us get to our rulebooks. I could hardly be more biased about how useful the books are, but I do think the federal book is a really good tool for those that spend a lot of time in federal court.
The book is available through O’Connor’s at https://www.oconnors.com/store/products/details/oconnors-federal-rules-civil-trials-2017.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I recently spoke on cybersecurity for law firms with Robert L. King of Silicon Labs at UT Law’s 40th Annual Page Keeton Civil Litigation conference, October 27-28 at the Four Seasons Hotel and Suites in Austin. I wanted to make the presentation materials available to readers, so click through for the paper and slides.
I am remiss for not thanking my co-panelists on the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016. A New Frontier or an Old Best Friend of the Eastern District of Texas? at the recent EDTX bench/bar. Enlightening all of us about the new statute and its interrelationship with prior state law were Gil Gillam of Marshall’s Gillam & Smith, Robert Kantner of Jones Day’s Dallas office, and Scott Partridge of Baker & Botts’ Houston office. We had a great time putting together and presenting the panel, and I hope everyone enjoyed it as much as we did.
This year’s Texas Bar Journal Year in Review article is out, including my take on patent litigation in Texas over the past year. Before you ask, the article went to press before the grant of cert in TC Heartland, so the four significant developments I discussed were:
Well, if you’re going to miss me talking about the effect of the new federal rules on discovery and pleadings on patent litigation in Plano in November, or moderating a panel on trade secret litigation at the EDTX bench/bar in Plano (or opining online about the challenges of scratchbuilding the Apollo/Saturn V Launch Umbilical Tower in 1/200 scale) never fear – you can still catch me talking about cybersecurity for law firms with Robert L. King of Silicon Labs in Austin next month. I am honored to be participating in UT Law’s 40th Annual Page Keeton Civil Litigation conference, scheduled for October 27-28 at the Four Seasons Hotel and Suites in Austin. Attached is a PDF of the program brochure. Download PL16_brochure Leading litigators, judges, and law professors will be at the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Austin to provide updates and analysis of important developments in civil litigation practice, with substantive coverage of practice tips, advocacy strategies, and important trends. 2016 Conference highlights: Get the latest updates on Texas civil procedure, changes in FRCP, and insurance law developments Hear premier Texas litigators discuss challenges and opportunities in the arenas of damages, contorts, and alternative dispute resolution in 21st century litigation Get a Texas Supreme Court Justice’s point of view on significant decisions from the past term Learn tips for handling common issues that arise in litigation in the bankruptcy court and in civil litigation affected by bankruptcy Learn what lawyers and law firms need to know about data security to avoid losing clients and getting sued (this is my part) Look at important hearsay issues, with an emphasis on hearsay appearing in social and other electronic media Hear about the practicalities lawyers and courts face as jurors increasingly live online and have new expectations for access to the facts, and lawyers have new access into jurors’ lives Explore new opportunities in employment law for civil litigators Earn up to 3.50 hours of ethics credit You can see the program agenda and register online at www.utcle.org/conferences/PL16. Special group registration rates are also available by calling 512.475.6700. I hope to see you there. Meanwhile, I am available for WebEx presentations on the Saturn V LUT thing. Seriously. The LUT is the great white whale for baby boomer plastic modelers, and I am after it. Hard. (I have to have something to fall back on if this whole Dak Prescott thing doesn’t work out).
My cochair Steve Malin (Chen Malin) and I would like to invite you to attend the Institute for Law and Technology’s 54th Annual Conference on Intellectual Property Law. The program will be held November 14-15, 2016 at the Center for American and International Law in Plano, Texas. This long running program brings together leading intellectual property practitioners from around the country for outstanding substantive and procedural programming, as well as numerous networking opportunities. You can view the schedule and faculty here. Topics include: Networking Breakfast Presented by the Women in IP Task Force Annual IP Law year in Review Presentations Section 101 Deep Dive for both Prosecutors and Litigators USPTO Enhanced Patent Quality Initiative Drafting Claims while Avoiding Indefiniteness and Other Pitfalls Changes to Pleading and Discovery Rules in ED Tex. 5 Things You Should Know About the Amended PTAB Rules Two In-House Counsel Panels Comparison of Federal and Texas Trade Secret Acts F/RAND Issues from both Sides of the ‘V.’ – the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly CLE credit will be available. View the full agenda and register now. For more information, click here or contact Lilly Hogarth at email@example.com or 972.244.3424