Does anyone have experience (good or bad) with either New Alliance or Webster banks?

I'm look for a new back to open my business accounts (operating and trust), and I am unwilling to do so with a national bank. Our personal accounts are with a national bank, and we've been talking about switching away for a while. I'm definitely not opening new accounts there.

I would prefer a fairly local bank, or at least a CT-focused bank. I like the sound of Liberty Bank, but the lack of a branch within 20 minutes of here makes it not appropriate for what I need. I think right now New Alliance is a little ahead in the running... Since they operate in MA, I should be able to open an MA IOLTA account there if I need to. Supposedly, Webster has specialized reporting for their IOLTA accounts online.

Argh. So many decisions.


* IOLTA is a acronym which stands for "interest on lawyer trust accounts." Basically, if an attorney is holding funds for you, the interest goes to a state fund used for various purposes (depending on the state).
I passed the July 2010 Connecticut Bar exam!


So, assuming that they haven't decided that I am an axe-murderer or something, I will soon be an attorney in CT. There's supposed to be a letter in the mail with the confirmation, and the date of the swearing in ceremony.

I'm quite pleased, and the champagne is chilling in the fridge.
Second day of the CT bar exam is today. Essays were yesterday... Exhausting but only a couple of questions I drew a blank on, and while none of the topics on the exam surprised me, a missing topic shocked me. I won't say now, because I don't want to bring down the wrath of the bar examiners.

Today is the Multi-state Bar Examination (MBE). It's a 200 question multiple choice test spread out over two 3-hour segments. To give everyone an idea of what the questions are like, a typical "solid" raw score is about 62%. Note that in grade school, that would get you an 'F'. I think if you get higher than 75%, they probably investigate you for cheating: it's damn hard.

I didn't sleep very well last night. I had a bunch of decaf coffee last night, and now I'm wondering if they gave me regular. In any case, I'm pretty pleased to be halfway through the CT exam. We are going to go home tonight (change in plans), and then I will drive up to Springfield tomorrow for the MA essay day (10 essays in 6 hours: their questions are funny). Lily is pretty much fed up with the hotel room, and I'm sorry to say it, but Hartford is just BORING.

We went up to the Riverside park last night. It was pretty nice, but Lily didn't take her nap until really late, so we were only there for about 15-20 minutes before the park ranger shooed us out. Still, it was good to get outside. [livejournal.com profile] kuzu_no_ha and Lily went up to the CT Science Museum. She said it was a snoozer, but then we've been to quite a few world-class museums in the past year, too.

Well, breakfast should be here shortly. Good luck today, to bar applicants! Have a great day to everyone else.
My goodness but Scalia can really write... here's a bit that I particularly liked:

The word "Arms" would have two different meanings at once: "weapons" (as the object of "keep") and (as the object of "bear") one-half of an idiom. It would be rather like saying "He filled and kicked the bucket" to mean "He filled the bucket and died." Grotesque.


How often do you get to see "grotesque" used in a Supreme Court opinion?
No news yet in the Heller case:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,,-7073768,00.html


Crazy that the first report I was able to find (I've been watching all morning) was from a UK paper. I'm really torn on this one. I would like to see the Supreme Court take it and affirm, since it might be the only way that Connecticut's assault weapons ban would ever go away (if the reasoning is anything like the D.C. or 5th circuits), but if they decline than the D.C. handgun ban expires immediately. I think Fenty's ready to blow a gasket anyway.

It is, of course, possible that the Court could take the case and reverse. I think that is extremely unlikely based on the quality of the reasoning on both sides, and I think it can hardly damage the gun-rights case any more than the existing body of law.


EDIT: In other news, NYPD now apparently considers a HAIRBRUSH a deadly weapon:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/13/nyregion/14shootingcnd.html?hp
After a long train ride listening to podcasts, I am in a thoughtful mood. (Apparently it's going around [livejournal.com profile] thorsbaby)


At some point in the future, I'm going to need to write some papers again, so here are some ideas:


  • Legal Considerations of Self-Defense Through History
  • The Conflict Between Corporate and Individual Rights
  • Rights of Land and Rights of the Person: How Do You Choose?
  • Weapon Control Through History
  • The Moral Choice to Break the Law
  • Carbon Credits and the Barbarian Wergeld

So tonight for Legal Skills, I had my first oral argument. I was representing the Plaintiff, and one of the other students was representing the defendant. The defendant went first, then I had to go, and then he rebutted.

He did pretty well, although the judges beat him up with questions pretty early on. I did well, I think, (they said I was "persuasive" YEAH!), but I said a few truly idiotic things along the way. I kept control pretty well, and the hands got going a bit, but I don't think too many "uh..."s slipped through. Still, I'm pretty exhausted from the whole experience.

I probably won't have any oral argument for a long time, but it was a good experience. I just wish I had done the prep for it before I wrote the brief. All of my notes for the oral argument would have made writing the brief much easier.


I was so terrified of the judges questions, that I really only prepped for that part. I didn't prep for the actual argument section nearly well enough, so when the judges went cold-bench on me, I floundered around. It was a damn shame that the defendant didn't bring up his favorite case from his memo, I was prepared to nuke him with it. Ah well.

Hmm...

Mar. 19th, 2007 08:53 pm
http://wbztv.com/local/local_story_078184652.html


I'm not really comfortable with this.
Finished reading Civil Procedure. The most recent chapter was on class-action suits. Ick. Maybe I would feel differently about it if I felt like corporations and professionals were generally the problem in our society. I think that those groups cause problems, sure, but I think that generally there are many "checks" on bad behavior, from general capitalist principles to the plethora of legal remedies.

One of the principal public policy justifications for class-action suits is that the individual claims aren't enough to justify litigation on their own. I'm not sure that this is really a worthwhile use of judicial time, nor do I think it actually works very well. As an example, imagine that all of the people that bought the salmonella tainted peanut butter were certified as a class. Suppose that the class won the lawsuit, or (much more likely) that the manufacturer settled for $175 million. Do you know how that works out in the end? All 300 million people who bought the peanut butter get a coupon for 25 cents off their next purchase of peanut butter (from that manufacturer, no less!), and the attorneys get the rest ($100M). What did we really achieve here?

I'm much more interested in suits that vindicate the rights of the citizen against the state. Unfortunately, courts generally aren't real interested in hearing these types of suits, particularly if those rights are constitutional in nature. Sort of shame really, but I suppose we made it this way. States and Federal governments are frequently excused (by statute) from paying attorney's fees, and officials generally have at least some level of immunity from suit. Toss in the goofy rules that the Supreme Court has cobbled together called "standing," and you get a government with pretty much a free hand to make trouble.

I wonder if you can combine class-action suits with 42 USC Sec. 1983 Civil Rights claims. I have some real complaints about things, and my representatives seem too busy doling out pork projects and salary increases to deal with anything that looks like a real problem.


Would you believe this post was originally going to be about the driveway? I dug out the Mustang and the Nissan, but there is still thirty feet of uncleared driveway behind them. I guess I'll leave that project for tomorrow.

Legal paper

Mar. 5th, 2007 02:19 pm
So, I've been working on my 15-page legal skills paper (I'm at around 10 pages) which is due Thursday. I have actual legitimate work to do, but I can hopefully make that up during break (right after this is due). I've hit a bit of an impasse in one of the three sections, and for now I think I've just going to detour around it for now and come back to it later.

I'm not going to bore you all with a bunch of legalese about it, but to show, by analogy, the nature of my complaint, I will give a mathematical example...

The professor divides the class in half. One half is supposed to answer yes, and the other no. We are given a problem to research, and we must support our answer with mathematical proof. However, in the course of the research, it comes out that the equation we are talking about is:

Does 2 + 2 = 4?

Now, imagine, that you ended up on the "no" side. Blarg.

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