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Our 200-lawyer litigation practice advises clients of all sizes, from multinational corporations to individual plaintiffs and defendants. We successfully represent our clients in federal and state courts around the country. The strength of our lawyers is based on the fundamental principle that excellence in client service mandates deep substantive knowledge in a broad range of industries and areas of the law, and―when required―incomparable ability and success in the courtroom.

The Latest on Judge Albright’s January Trial


By on Dec 21, 2020
Posted In Federal Courts, Reopening Procedures, Texas

Readers will recall our coverage of Judge Alan Albright’s re-transfer of an Austin patent case to Waco so that the court could hold a jury trial in January as scheduled. In that case, the defendant has sought mandamus from the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to stop the trial, but the petition...

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Lawyers and Judges Battle over COVID-19


By on Dec 17, 2020
Posted In California, Reopening Procedures, State Courts

Requests for COVID-19-related trial delays can lead to strife between lawyers and judges—and crazy things can happen. We see this most recently in San Bernadino, California, where a civil jury trial has been interrupted in the middle of jury selection. The Sun has the story, which we paraphrase: An attorney who allegedly tested positive for...

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On Again, Off Again


By on Dec 16, 2020
Posted In Texas

Readers will remember our coverage of the November trial in Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division, which ended in a mistrial after jurors, court staff, and lawyers on both sides contracted COVID-19. The trial judge, Amos Mazzant, had wanted to push forward, but the number of jurors eventually grew too small. On December 4, Judge...

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Updates from the Several States


By on Dec 15, 2020
Posted In California, Indiana, New York, North Carolina

A vaccine is on the way, but jury trials are not—at least not in many places. Yesterday Indiana suspended all jury trials in the state until March. North Carolina froze nearly all in-person court proceedings through at least January 14, 2021. The Western District of New York halted all jury trials at least through February...

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Virtual Courtrooms in Miami


By on Dec 11, 2020
Posted In Court Technology, Florida, Reopening Procedures

This morning we received this notice from state court in Miami (the Eleventh Judicial Circuit) where we have a case pending: Coronavirus/COVID-19: Courthouses are closed for in-person hearings and trials based on public health advisories at the direction of the Florida Supreme Court. The Eleventh Judicial Circuit wants you safe at home.   We are...

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Competing Approaches in South Carolina


By on Dec 7, 2020
Posted In Federal Courts, Reopening Procedures, South Carolina, State Courts

Last week saw differing approaches to the pandemic in South Carolina. In the state court system, Chief Justice Don Beatty suspended all state civil and criminal jury trials, finding “that in light of the ongoing increase in COVID-19 cases throughout South Carolina, and the expectation by the medical community and experts that the number of...

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Trial by Webex, but Not Zoom?


By on Dec 4, 2020
Posted In Court Technology, Federal Courts, Reopening Procedures, State Courts

Litigation by Zoom is not novel at this point. Depositions by Zoom, motions hearings by Zoom, bench trials by Zoom—it’s all become commonplace. While federal civil jury trials by Zoom have been rare, there have been many in various state courts. And while we know from our daily lives that other videoconferencing services are available...

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In WDTex, the Fight Escalates


By on Dec 2, 2020
Posted In Federal Courts, Reopening Procedures, Texas

Last week we told you about Judge Alan Albright’s determination to keep trying patent cases. He had a trial scheduled for January in Austin, where he had transferred the case pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1404 while leaving himself as the assigned judge. Trials are not being held in the Austin courthouse, however, so he...

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A Mistrial, without a Positive Case


By on Nov 30, 2020
Posted In North Carolina, Reopening Procedures, State Courts

In Charlotte, North Carolina, the Superior Court for Mecklenburg County attempted to hold its first pandemic jury trial, starting November 16. Things did not go well. First, during the evidence phase, a jury was excused after reporting a possible exposure. He later tested negative. Then, jury deliberations were suspended for a week when a juror...

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Continuing the Continuances


By on Nov 25, 2020
Posted In Federal Courts, Minnesota, Reopening Procedures

On Monday we summarized the various district court orders shutting down jury trials. But events are outpacing us. The US District Court for the District of Minnesota had continued all 2020 jury trials; last night, the continuance was extended until February 1, 2021.

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McDermott’s litigation team monitors US courts as they reopen amid the ongoing COVID-19 public health crisis. 

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