In an excellent feature article, “Paralegals Given Wider Latitude in Signing Business Correspondence,” Law.com reports that the Advisory Committee on Professional Ethics and the Committee on the Unauthorized Practice of Law issued a joint opinion last month, allowing New Jersey paralegals to sign routine correspondence. Previously, they could only sign routine letters not addressed to…

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I don’t think any of you want to be associated with a “paralegal” or “investigator” whose qualifications, or lack thereof, include: An extensive criminal history No formal paralegal education No investigator’s license Yet that’s the person Georgia lawyer Joseph Maccione hired to assist him in his solo practice, allowing this fine fellow to prepare correspondence,…

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This says you’re tough on digital security. I’m working on a new ethics CLE presentation, “Old-Fashioned Ethics in a Newfangled World,” but in my focus on digital and online security and ethical issues, I haven’t been thinking as much about hardware as software. But a recent Mashable post, “10 Security Gadgets to Keep Your Stuff…

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Amy Dickinson is a syndicated advice columnist and the late Ann Landers’ successor at the Chicago Tribune. Although she’s not a legal professional, Dickinson knew exactly what to say when a reader wrote her about an uncomfortable dining experience at a Long Island restaurant: Dear Amy: Last night, I took my mother out for what…

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Producers have hired Guillermo Diaz to play one of the principal supporting characters. He’ll play a paralegal working in the main character’s firm that doubles as an expect hacker. He’s fiercely loyal and willing to get his hands dirty whenever his boss asks. Mixing things up was never a problem for his character on Weeds,…

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A couple of days ago I blogged about “How to Abuse a Notary Commission,” based on shocking allegations of notary stamp abuse in a foreclosure mill case that has made national news. A reader left the following question at the post: As a notary, I sometimes find myself in a bit of a sticky situation.…

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If you’re using handheld or mobile electronic devices including (but not limited to) laptops, netbooks, tablets, MP3 players, USB drives and/or smart phones for work, consider whether you have adequately secured these devices from possible confidentiality breaches. These handy digital devices are easy to lose, steal, or even access remotely without authorization – with the…

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How many of my readers are commissioned notary publics, i.e. effectively officers of the state they live in? While the public may view the business of notarizing signatures as the simple wielding of a rubber stamp, those who have earned their notary commissions know the standards are much higher. Misuse of a notary stamp, depending…

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