Social Media

New Rules for Juror Internet Use in Florida Criminal Cases

The Florida Supreme Court issued an opinion last Thursday approving new standard jury instruction 1.001 (Introduction) which, according to the Comment, deals with jurors’ “communication with other and outside research.” If there is any question as to the serious nature of juror internet use — either tweeting/Facebooking about service or …

Trial

2012 Small Claims Court Clinic

Slightly off topic from Internet/legal issues, the Palm Beach Bar Association and the Palm Beach County Library, as part of the 2012 Law Week, hosted the 2012 Small Claims Court Clinic this week to assist the community by providing the in’s and out’s of court claims under $5000.  If you …

E-discovery

Discovery of Facebook Content in Florida Cases

At least two Florida courts have issued orders permitting the discovery of Facebook content in civil actions (one is here).  This has been the subject of orders, appeals, and articles around the country. But how exactly do you pursue social media discovery (or, conversely, protect your client from it?). “Discovery …

Privacy

Florida “Do Not Call” List — Now Free

Register your home and mobile phones with the Florida Dept of Agricultural and Consumer Services’ “Do Not Call” list to prevent sales call to your home and cell phones. Previously, there was a charge for this service.  In light of new legislation, registration is free and easy. First, go to http://www.fldnc.com/ …

Evidence

Nevada Supreme Court Explains Admissibility Standards for IM / Text Messages

The criminal case of Kevin Rodriguez v. State of Nevada is one of three recent cases nationwide which discusses the admissibility of text messages in trial. In Rodriguez, a victim was attacked, robbed, and her cell phone was taken.  Thereafter, twelve text messages were sent from the victim’s phone.  The …

iOS

CLE: iPhone and iPad Apps for Lawyers

The Palm Beach Bar Association is hosting the 2.5 CLER credit course, iPhone and iPad Apps for Lawyers, on June 15, 2012 at the Bar’s new offices. Bring your mobile device, have lunch, and learn about more than 50 apps which will help your law practice, writing, research, communications, and …

Ethics

Can a Lawyer Respond to an Opposing Party Email?

A defendant in a personal injury suit lost in arbitration and her lawyer sought trial de novo.  The defendant sent an email to plaintiff’s counsel stating that she, as the party, did not want a trial and complained that her counsel and insurance carrier were continuing to defend the case. …

Evidence

Internet Sleuthing: Number Guru & Spokeo

Can you find someone with only a cell, fax or phone number?   Or just a name? Or email address? The March 2012 Palm Beach County Bar Bulletin can tell you in this month’s Technology Corner article, Internet Sleuthing: Number Guru and Spokeo.

Ethics

Paralegal Ethics, the Internet & Social Networking Sites

Special thanks to the Paralegal Association of Florida for the invitation to speak at the Boca Raton Chapter’s 5th Annual Ethics Seminar. We discussed paralegal ethics relating to the use of social media (especially Facebook) for research as well as ethics relating to assisting lawyers with jury selection by using …

Privacy

Florida Court Orders Plaintiff to Produce Facebook Content

Consistent with most jurisdictions nationwide, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida circuit court judge ordered plaintiffs in a medical malpractice case to produce Facebook data in discovery.  Plaintiffs had objected to the production on the grounds that the request was overbroad, burdensome, not within the scope of discovery, and violated privacy rights. …

Uncategorized

20 Free Programs You Should Have on Your PC in 2012

Apps for smartphones are pretty easy — finding and installing programs (the original “apps”) for a new PC is not so easy.  If you have a new PC after the holidays or simply want to make sure you have the right (free) tools which every lawyer should have on at …

Privacy

What Are Your Jurors Doing on the Internet?

A persistent problem for the jury system has been jurors using the Internet during jury selection and trial.  Despite media coverage, the problem continues (even internationally). But there may be a positive side of this issue: jurors are, like the rest of us, often tied to the internet or smartphones.  Perhaps …

Privacy

U.S. Supreme Court, GPS Darts & George Orwell

The case of U.S. v. Jones is set for oral argument before the U.S. Supreme Court next week and may resolve whether police may physically attach a GPS transmitter on a person’s car to track its movements for an extended period of time — without a warrant. Read the article …

Privacy

Facebook Security Settings for Lawyers (and Their Families)

As much as lawyers want to use Facebook for advertising, a key concern is security for their “public” accounts… and their personal ones.   This October 2011 article from the Palm Beach Bar Association explains, in step-by-step format, how to secure your Facebook accounts. In light of the recent Facebook …

Social Media

CT Judge OK’s Facebook Joking Juror & Juror Facebook-friending

On October 5, 2011, a Connecticut federal court judge declined to order a new trial after the defendant in a tax evasion case learned that  (a) “Juror X” was posting on Facebook during trial that he “may get 2 hang someone… can’t wait” and “Guinness for lunch break” and (b) “Juror …