Gov. Malloy: You Can Make A Difference In The Courts

Governor Dannel P. Malloy should be bold in proposing reform in the state’s courts. It is not that the judiciary is opposed in principle to change. But bench and bar are inherently conservative. They cherish the status quo, even if the current manner of doing business is wasteful. Someone needs to take a leadership role. Who better than a new governor?
All it would take would be a simple piece of legislation to reduce the backlog of cases in the criminal and civil courts, cut the cost to both plaintiffs and defendants of taking a case to trial, and, as a result, improve public...
January 27, 2011

A Lawyer, A Client and Bad News

I am in the business of offering hope, but there are hopeless situations, cases in which there is nothing that can be done. Accepting that is hard for me, but it is far harder on the man or woman viewing me as their last best hope. They abide in their sorrow, while I move on to another case. I never hear the stars of the bar talk about hopelessness. The literature of the bar's elite is generally of the self-congratulatory sort, with boast of cases won, impossible odds bested.
But what do you tell a man serving what will undoubtedly be the rest of his life behind bars after a plea of...
January 24, 2011

Minimum Fees For Criminal Defense Work?

The economic slowdown has finally trickled down to street lawyers. Clients now struggle to pay even modest fees. There is little by way of easy credit, and even less in home equity. As for credit card advances, well, good luck. But trouble keeps coming, and folks need lawyers. Lawyers also need work. It is a recipe for disaster.
I tried a habeas corpus case last week. Among the claims were that trial counsel failed to conduct a meaningful investigation of the allegations against the client, who was charged with possessing cocaine with the intent to sell. The case started with the...
January 22, 2011

If It's Good Enough For the Fox ...

I saw another of the law’s dismal and predictable set pieces last week. As always, a trial court blessed the mess and called it justice. When will the courts begin to hold police officers to the same standards to which other witnesses are held? A client was arrested and charged with possession of narcotics with the intent to sell. Officers handcuffed him, took him to a police station, and then started questioning him. At the end of several hours, the client signed his life away, writing a confession that led the officers to get a search warrant for another location where drugs and cash...
January 21, 2011

Cattle Chutes And Martln Luther King

January 17, 2011
I was born mid-way through the baby boom, that great torrent of folks tumbling from the womb between the end of the Second World War and the...

Civility? In Your Dreams

January 16, 2011
Let me see if I get this straight: Jared Loughner is an unhinged loner, a madman who, inspired by voices only he could hear, erupted in a destructive...

Memo To Texas Bar: Back Off

January 16, 2011
I hate the Texas Bar Association. You should too. So should everyone who cares about whether people accused of a crime can find a lawyer to represent...

King Of Death Row Toppled

January 15, 2011
The end came swiftly: Yesterday, Waterbury State's Attorney John Connelly resigned, ending a 30-year career as one of Connecticut's most colorful and...

Prosecuting An Act Of Kindness

January 13, 2011
It seems paradoxical to suggest that we need to fight for the right to die. We owe nature a death. Most of us spend the better part of our lives...

Nicotine and Jared Loughner

January 11, 2011
The rhetoricat bobbing and weaving responding to the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a federal judge and more than a dozen others, has...

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Taking Back the Courts
Norm Pattis Taking Back the Courts

The Wizard of Oz was one of my favorites movies as a kid. Little did I know judges were so much like the wizard, hiding behind empty trappings of power. This book tells you things you need to know about what really goes on in court. Read it, weep, and then demand that the courts do better.

In the Trenches
Norm Pattis In the Trenches

Plenty of lawyers write about the law, but few who write try cases. Judge for yourself whether I talk the talk and walk the walk in this collection of occasional essays about life in the law's trenches.

Juries and Justice
Norm Pattis Juries and Justice

How prepared are you to take seriously the notion that 'we the people' are, in fact, sovereign? Discover the secret, and unused, power of jurors. 'Ask why; then nullify.'

Norm Pattis

About Norm

Norm Pattis is a Connecticut based trial lawyer focused on high stakes criminal cases and civil right violations. He is a veteran of more than 150 jury trials, many resulting in acquittals for people charged with serious crimes, multi-million dollar civil rights and discrimination verdicts, and scores of cases favorably settled.

© Norm Pattis is represented by Elite Lawyer Management, managing agents for Exceptional American Lawyers
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