Monday status conference: brand new edition

It’s a brand new week, the Supreme Court is expected to hand down some brand new opinions today, and there is a brand new issue of Lawyers USA on the stands. Here is a taste of what’s in this issue (Subscribers can click the links for more).

A growing trend of custody battles involving adult children fighting over where their parents should live and who should control their finances has fostered a new preemptive tool: elder mediation. Across the U.S., family lawyers and estate planners are turning to mediators – and sometimes serving as mediators. More here.

In the midst of a nationwide foreclosure crisis, individual states have undertaken programs aimed at helping buyers and lenders sort out the mess. One of the more ambitious plans has been implemented in Ohio, where foreclosure filings have risen by one-third since 2005. More here.

Patent cases typically involve high stakes and large dollar amounts. But a recent petition for certiorari filed in the U.S. Supreme Court could be the most high-profile patent law case in years. At issue: the validity of the appointment of 46 (out of 74) patent judges and any decisions they rendered in the last eight years. More here.

As Internet marketing has grown more sophisticated, it is getting less clear exactly how the ethical rules governing lawyer marketing should apply.A few states, most notably Florida and New York, specific rules for ‘computer-accessed communications’ and separately address issues of websites and e-mail. More here.

Meanwhile,

Under the Senate’s version of a bill aimed at helping the country through the housing meltdown, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would foot part of the cost of helping Americans struggling with their mortgages. (Bloomberg).

Texas mayors and business leaders filed a class-action lawsuit Friday alleging Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff hoodwinked landowners into waiving their property rights for construction of a fence along the Mexican border. (AP)

Test results could shed some light today on what caused Sen. Edwards Kennedy to suffer a seizure of the weekend. (WaPo)

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