Integrations, integrations, integrations. You’ve probably heard about integrations for years, but lots of people still struggle to understand just how this stuff is going to change their workflows. Jared explains the whole concept, gives some of the first integrations you need to be using, and warns you away from some missteps.
Next, Emil Ali stops by chat with Jared about the unique challenges and worrying trends in IP ethics. Oh, what’s that? You’re not an IP attorney? Well, you’d be surprised how many non-IP attorneys get hit with these very much not trivial penalties.
Finally, the stars have aligned! Welcome to the era of Barbenheimer! Jared and Emil look back at past movie release days to debate other great film pairings that have paved the way for this “momentous” occasion.
Emil Ali is a partner at McCabe & Ali, LLP.
Since it’s Barbenheimer weekend, we’ve mixed some serious + silly songs together, in the spirit of the moment. (Though, I hear ‘Barbie’ is pretty deep, too.)
Our opening track is Two Cigarettes by Major Label Interest.
Our closing track is Healthy Snack by Reveille.
Special thanks to our
sponsors , , , and .
Intro: It’s the Legal Toolkit with Jared Correia with guest Emil Ali. We play “A Day at the Movies” and then, inspired by the top movies of today, we discuss what’s more explosive vision or fashion but I think we all know the answer. But first, your host, Jared Correia.
Jared Correia: The stately plump Buck Mulligan also listens to the Legal Toolkit podcast, do you? Well, yeah, I guess you are, because you’re listening to it right now. Never mind. And yes, it’s still called the Legal Toolkit podcast, even though I have no clue what a variable speed scroll saw is, though my guess is that it’s better than a single speed scroll saw. I’m your host, Jared Correia. You’re stuck with me because Milton Berle was unavailable. He was occupied building out the next episode of Texaco Star Theater. I’m the CEO of Red Cave Law Firm Consulting, a business management consulting service for attorneys and bar associations. Find us online at redcavelegal.com.
I’m the COO of Gideon Software. We build chat bots so law firms can convert more leads and conversational document assembly tools so law firms can build documents faster and more accurately. Schedule a demo to checkout our new e-signature tool at gideonlegal.com. Now, before we get to our interview today with Emil Ali of McCabe Ali, LLP. I want to talk about software integrations. That’s right, software integrations. I talk to people a lot about legal technology and one of the things we talk about quite a bit is this concept of software integrations which I think is still pretty hard for people to grasp, actually. Because when I have these conversations with a lot of folks, I’m like, “you have no idea what I’m talking about, do you?” So I wanted to do a little bit on integrations, talk about their importance and hopefully give people a better understanding of those before I talk about pop culture or music in the next episode.
So one of the biggest values of cloud-based software is that you can actually connect it to other cloud-based softwares which was a huge pain in the ass to do with desktop software at any level. So that’s a staggering advantage, frankly and if you look at some of the tools out there, Clio and Legal, Salesforce and CRM. Clio basically copied Salesforce’s strategy which was to have a bunch of integration partners who could help you sell your services. Great marketing strategy, obviously, worked pretty well for them. It’s a good thing to do in terms of business generation, revenue generation for vendors, but it’s also really effective for the end user. So let’s talk about why. Let’s talk about what integrations do. So integrations really do two things. They can surface features on one product through another and they can allow you to share data, like push and pull data between softwares which is really important. So what’s an example of being able to surface features in one software for another? Let’s say you’re using an automated calendaring tool like Calendly or Acuity or something like that, and you’ve got it connected to your calendar app like Outlook or Google Calendar, or you have it connected to your case management system or your CRM. See how helpful this is? Starting to get it, right? You can schedule into your calendar via another application, which is pretty cool, which means you don’t have to do that and you’ve unified these two products together. Super helpful, because lawyers are terrible at scheduling things otherwise. Not for nothing, but most business people are terrible about scheduling things without automated calendaring tools.
Another example of that would be you could track time on your cases in an automated fashion using an automated time tracking tool like Chrometa or timeBro or WiseTime or something like that and then you can push that directly into your case management system as a build item. That’s really helpful. Again, it takes a step away from what you’re doing, saving you time, allowing you to be more efficient. The reason you do this is because those features may not exist in your current system that you’re using or the primary system that you use. You may not have an automated time tracker in your case management system, some do. You may not have a scheduling tool in your case management system or CRM, some do. But if you don’t, you can supplement your product with another. If you have the two licenses and there’s direct integration between those two softwares, you’re good to go. I’ll talk about the types of integrations in a second here. The other thing you can do is you can share data from one system into another.
Probably the best example I can think of with this is now that law firms are starting to use CRMs, pre-regularly, post pandemic, you can take a lead profile, a set of information about a lead, a potential client, you take on with law firm and then push that automatically into a law practice management software or case management software once that client has closed. You don’t have to go in and manually input that data and maybe make some mistakes on it, and you don’t have to spend the time doing that. It’s really helpful. So integrations are great, and I just gave you three examples off top of my head. There are millions, literally millions. There’s so many different softwares that you can connect now via different attributes. We’ll talk about those. How does this all happen? This happens through something called an API. An API, at its most basic level is a tool that allows software, a programming environment, really, that allows softwares to swap data back and forth to surface some of these features. I always have a hard time explaining this, so let’s go to our friends at Wikipedia who have the following definition. An API is an application programming interface and it’s a way for two or more computer programs to communicate with each other. Beautiful. Thank you, Wikipedia. All right, further, it is a type of software interface offering a service to other pieces of software.
Now, this is an important part too. So a document or standard that describes how to build or use such a connection or interface is called an API specification and a computer system that meets this standard is said to implement or expose an API. The term API may refer either to the specification or to the implementation. All right, let’s unpack that a little bit. There is API documentation in place for companies that have APIs available for other software to write for their system or to code for their system, which may be published or which may be behind closed doors. So if a system has an open API, that means anyone can access that and create an integration for their system. There are certain specifications around that. When I say anyone, I don’t mean anyone. The API specifications will lock people out that potentially don’t have the right security protocols, for example, but you get my drift. Anybody can see the information, at least, even if they don’t have the chops to write for it. And then there’s these closed API environments where companies will only proffer that information to other organizations that they want to work with. You have to ask for it.
Now, there are three types of integrations that are available. One is a direct integration, and this is the easiest and cheapest way to do it. So a direct integration is when two companies have said, “Hey, let’s work together. You push your information into my software, I’ll push my information into your software. We’ll surface each other’s features.” Now, what’s great about that is there’s a direct integration. Two companies have built this integration together conceivably. You don’t need to pay anything else to access that integration. Super helpful. Lawyers are cheap. Wait, lawyers are cheap? Yeah, lawyers are cheap. Okay, then we’ve got the indirect integration which means that there’s not a direct integration that exists in the sense that two companies have built an integration together, but there is a third-party bridging technology that you can use. For example, Zapier is the most prolific tool like this. Make is another, but there are a bunch of others out there which will essentially create an API connection using its software to allow these two softwares to communicate with each other. Sounds more complicated than it is, frankly.
Think of it as each of the software, I use the term bridging software for a reason. Think of it as two software as being two separate banks on a river, and you need a bridge to connect them. Zapier is the bridge or Make is the bridge. Now, the challenge with this is, while there are a lot of software potentially using a bridging tool, especially one like Zapier, which means that you can connect to a bunch of other systems. There’s a fee for that once you get to a certain level, depending on how many systems you connect to each other, how many triggers they are called that you use. They’re called triggers in Zapier because you’re doing one thing in one software, which has another thing happen in the other software, right? It’s a cause and effect type of thing. So Zapier is really useful tool. You can connect almost anything to anything else using Zapier and/or the direct integrations that you have from a software provider, but you got to think about the additional cost for that. So what’s interesting is in my case, which is very anti-integration for a long time, they wanted you to use just their software which they kind of viewed as an operating system for legal which is kind of a myth that I think a lot of these companies have been peddling for a while.
They actually have a Zapier integration that they recently announced. So now you can connect that software to a whole bunch of other softwares. So Zapier is great, tools like that are great, but there is a little bit of additional cost to that. And then there’s the second type of indirect integration, which is if you can get a company to give you their API documents, or you can access the API documents on your own, you can build your own integration with the software. Unless, you know technology, unless you can hire engineers, unless you want to spend a boatload of money to do this and to update it, I would avoid this entirely as a law firm unless you’re a big law firm with lots of revenue, right? Because the challenge is not just building the API connection. Yeah, you can do that. It’s maintaining it because these things break all the time, right? So somebody on one side of that river, one software company, changes a field, or the way they name a field, and then that breaks everything. You got to fix that. It’s a pain in the ass, frankly. And I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” Which is a great Coen Brothers movie. If you have not seen “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” Check it out, and if you’re thinking of doing an indirect integration, building out your own integration using the API tools that are out there, do not seek the treasure but there is a treasure at the end of this podcast, which is not only our interview with Emil Ali, where we’re talking about ethics for intellectual property attorneys, but also, yes, the rump roast, where we’re celebrating Barbenheimer weekend. Stay tuned for all that and potentially more, I don’t know.
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Jared Correia: Okay, let’s get to the meat. In the middle of this legal podcasting sandwich. Today’s meat is spam, a Hawaiian delicacy and tremendous fried. Trust me, your heart will thank you when it implodes. All right, that’s enough of that. Let’s talk to our guest. We have today, in his very first appearance on the Legal Toolkit podcast, Emil Ali, who is a partner at McCabe &, Ali LLP.
Emil, I wanted to talk to you because I think you have a really interesting practice niche. So you’re an ethics attorney and you actually have this niche where you work with IP attorneys, right? Can you talk a little bit about that? Because I’ve never heard of that before.
Emil Ali: Yeah, that’s correct. So my background, I guess you can say, is I am a registered patent attorney, right? So I’m licensed in multiple jurisdictions, but I also now have a technical background, and I’ve taken and passed what you call the patent bar, the registration exam. So it allows me, if I wanted to prepare and prosecute patent applications, but most of the work that I’ve done over the years, both while in the government and now in private practice is representing lawyers and law firms in, I guess you could say, the intersection of ethics and IP. My elevator pitch is that I’m one of a few hundred ethics attorneys, but as far as I know, I’m one of two IP attorneys that’s within those few hundred ethics attorneys.
Jared Correia: Yeah, that’s wild.
Emil Ali: Yeah, my day-to-day job is doing things like helping defend lawyers when they get into you know, I meet a lot of attorneys because they’re being investigated either by a state bar or by the USPTO. And some of your listeners who are not IP attorneys will be surprised to know that the USPTO has its own disciplinary arm with something like over 20 attorneys who investigate and prosecute attorney misconduct.
Jared Correia: I didn’t even know that.
Emil Ali: Yeah, it is wild.
Jared Correia: So can we unpack this a little bit? Because this is some crazy shit right here.
How does that work? Does that mean that you can also — could you be prosecuted by like two entities, like your state ethics board and like the patent ethics board, whatever this thing is? Star Chamber?
Emil Ali: Yeah, yeah, Star Chamber is probably a good way to put it. So, yes, you can, but in fact, even as a state barred attorney in multiple states, you technically can be prosecuted by multiple states, right? So let’s say you are an attorney licensed in the State of Oregon, but you live in the State of California, and in California you get, I don’t know, two DUIs. Unfortunately, as you probably know, lawyers tend to have a high prevalence of DUIs. So you get two DUIs in California, and California says, ”Hey, we’re going to give you a reprimand.” You know, Oregon could say, “Nope, we think you deserve a suspension.”
Jared Correia: Right.
Emil Ali: The same conduct could give you two different results and the worst part about it, at two different times, the other thing, they could do – yeah, the other thing.
Jared Correia: Nice, just be a garbage man. No, no, keep going.
Emil Ali: Yeah, sometimes I wonder, right? So California could give you that reprimand and then Oregon could also take reciprocal action.
Jared Correia: Can you explain that? What does reciprocal action mean?
Emil Ali: So good question. So reciprocal action is, think of it like comedy. When one state says, we’re going to give deference to another state or jurisdictions kind of review of the case, and they look at it under general like, in federal law, we consider them the selling factors. It’s from a Supreme Court case called Selling V. Radford.
Jared Correia: Really?
Emil Ali: But really what they look at is, was there any issues with the burden of proof, right? Was there any problem with that? Were there any due process violations? And generally speaking, as far as I’ve seen, I’ve never been able to have a client show that there was anything wrong with the underlying process. So a lot of times my biggest take when I talk to somebody for the first time, you know, I’ll talk to them and they’ll say, “Hey, I have this investigation.” And I tell them, “Hey, this is the process.” And they’re like, “No, no, I’ll handle it myself.” And I’m like, “That’s fine, just remember, if you aren’t successful –” and obviously successful is very subjective, but if you aren’t successful, if you get, say, a two-year suspension at the USPTO and you’re barred in Massachusetts, Massachusetts could theoretically take that suspension and say,” Oh, even though you didn’t do anything in our state, —
Jared Correia: Oh my God.
Emil Ali: –you don’t even live here anymore, whatever, we’re going to go ahead and reciprocally discipline you.” And they’ll ask you, “Was there anything unfair about the process of the USPTO” and, you know, you’ll say, “Oh, well, they suspended me, that’s not fair.” And that’s not one of the factors that you can really rely upon in most jurisdictions, right?
Jared Correia: Yeah.
Emil Ali: Some jurisdictions don’t treat the USPTO or other states as reciprocal jurisdictions.
Jared Correia: Sure, sure.
Emil Ali: For the most part, I would say more than half do.
Jared Correia: So how active is this USPTO Board? Like on a likelihood scale like are they coming after me first if I’m a patent lawyer or am I more likely to get my state ethics Boards coming after me?
Emil Ali: You know, that’s a good question. I think it varies from person to person and conduct to conduct. It really depends on how the case is open. So there’s a few hundred cases a year. So I guess my question to you would be when it comes to complaints, right? Patent attorneys do the same thing as regular attorneys, right? For the most part, right?
Jared Correia: Yeah.
Emil Ali: Not responding to clients.
Jared Correia: Right, right, right, yeah.
Emil Ali: I’m not going to say stealing money from clients. I will say sometimes they borrow money from their trust account, you know, things of that nature.
Jared Correia: Yeah, I mean, largely they feel like they can pay it back. I think that’s —
Emil Ali: Yeah.
Jared Correia: — probably what they think, yeah.
Emil Ali: Yeah, so it depends, right? Who is the client going to complain to, right? They’re going to complain to their state bar.
Jared Correia: Right.
Emil Ali: And that’s just how it works because it’s easier for them to understand that concept. It’s very difficult for an unsophisticated user of legal services who just paid $10,000 to file a patent application to sit and find the number for OEd Online because they didn’t even know it existed.
Jared Correia: Yeah, right.
Emil Ali: But sometimes if you call the patent office and say, “Hey, my attorney filed this patent application for me, but I haven’t seen him or heard from her or whatever in 20 years,” whatever, then of course they might refer you to the correct office, and that’s how they might get the case.
Jared Correia: Oh, that makes sense. Classify under a blind squirrel finding a nut. Okay.
Emil Ali: Exactly.
Jared Correia: I got you.
Emil Ali: And there are also cases that originate within the office, so a trademark examining attorney or a patent examiner could submit a complaint. I know they say they don’t look for it, but there are people within the USPTO that are looking for patterns of funny enough, and I’m sure some of your listeners are like, “Ah, I don’t want to listen to people talking about discipline and all that.”
Jared Correia: Okay, I love it.
Emil Ali: Yeah, if you really want to know, what the USPTO has been focusing on of late. it’s signatures. Okay?
Jared Correia: Oh, God. Really?
Emil Ali: Yeah. It used to be a lot of my cases were very technical into patent application. Somebody, you know, putting in the wrong reference or failing to cite a reference. There’s so many different technical things that could happen or subject matter conflicts. These days, I’m representing more and more trademark attorneys. So I would say our firm probably does now more trademark disciplinary defense than patent disciplinary defense. And most of those people are getting in trouble for their representation of clients in and from China, and it generally has to do with signatures. So I’ll take a step back and I’ll tell you a little bit about what I think is a very common practice with attorneys and how the USPTO interacts with that practice.
So let’s say Jared, you and I were in litigation on behalf of opposing parties, and we have to file a joint motion or status update or something to the court. So Jared, you might say, “Hey Emil, based on our conversation today, I’m gonna file a joint motion saying such and such”. And then you’ll electronically sign your name and then you might say, “Hey, Emil.”
Jared Correia: As one would in 2023.
Emil Ali: Yeah, exactly. And then you might say, “Jey Emil, would you mind if I electronically sign your name?” Or you’ll say, “Hey, can you sign this document?” And I’ll say, “Go ahead, Jared. Just sign my name and submit it.”
Jared Correia: People do that?
Emil Ali: Yeah, it is very common.
Jared Correia: It’s so easy to get somebody’s signature with signature platform. That’s just crazy to me.
Emil Ali: So maybe you won’t think that the USPTO’s goal here or whatever, their trajectory here is as much of a problem as I do. So when it comes to filing trademark applications or patent applications, there are a lot of perfunctory pro forma aspects of it. Filing a trademark application requires some preparation ahead of time to get the information ready, to understand what you’re going to put but ultimately typing in the form is something a scrivener can do. So you know, when you’re filing this trademark application, a lot of times you might have a paralegal input the information, prepare the filing.
Jared Correia: Yeah.
Emil Ali: And there’s a proprietary system that they use. It requires you to log in, et cetera. So you go into this USPTO filing system, your paralegal prepares the application, and then now it’s — somebody’s turn to sign it, whether it’s the client or the attorney.
Jared Correia: Yeah.
Emil Ali: So the attorney says, “Hey paralegal, thanks for showing me the application. Go ahead and enter my name between two forward slashes and submit.” That three or four years ago, it may be a warning letter. Ten years ago, no action wouldn’t even been open. Two years ago, I would have been able to get you a reprimand or something like that. One year ago, maybe a 38(ph) suspension. Now, if it’s happened more than once, they’re tossing out one year suspensions for that.
Jared Correia: Wow!
Emil Ali: Yeah. And you know, it is extremely, extremely disconcerting that the folks that are getting that discipline are what I would call non-IP attorneys that happen to be practicing trade.
Jared Correia: Oh, that makes, yeah. Yeah.
Emil Ali: So, Jared, you would consider yourself to not be an IP attorney, right?
Jared Correia: Most definitely.
Emil Ali: So not that I’m going to say that you’re going to become under the jurisdiction of the USPTO.
Jared Correia: Oh, God, let’s hope not after this.
Emil Ali: But let’s say that you filed a trademark application on behalf of me or my company. Well now, you’re suddenly under the jurisdiction of the USPTO. And let’s say that you didn’t personally sign that trademark application. Your wife did, or your paralegal did.
Jared Correia: My dog maybe?
Emil Ali: Anyone, right? Now, you violated their special signature rule. It’s 37 CFR 2.193 on the trademark side.
Jared Correia: Good Lord.
Emil Ali: Yeah. It is really incredible. And I’ll tell you the really kind of, maybe political piece here. So when it comes to a majority of the trademark applications right now, they’re coming from China. So, Jared, your question is why are they coming from China? You know, really –
Jared Correia: This is from the whole showbiz. I’m taking that. Not (00:24:31).
Emil Ali: So we all buy things from Amazon. Amazon needs to prevent folks from selling counterfeit goods or gray market goods. So if I wanted to sell a Coach bag on Amazon, they’re not going to let me do it. But how does Coach establish that it owns the right to sell Coach bags? Really, Coach does that through something called Amazon Brand Registry. So you have to show Amazon that you have a right to sell those goods under that mark by showing ownership or control of that trademark.
So when the random person in China that wants to sell you, like, I don’t know, let’s call it ACME. Okay? So in order to sell under ACME, Amazon is treating them just like Coach. They’re like, we don’t want to get sued for selling gray market counterfeit or whatever goods on our platform. So prove to us that you own the ACME brand. So you file a trademark for ACME and that’s why a lot of these brands on Amazon are made up words, because a made up word is so easy to file a trademark application for, like, Verizon made up term, Xfinity made up term. Easy to say no one else is using it, we can easily get a trademark. Same thing with HHNNP(ph), right? Whatever. Like a random string of words or letters. So now we have to get this application filed.
Well, a couple of years ago, when all these applications were getting filed, the USPTO was like, “Wow! We’re getting way too many applications from China. What should we do?” And they decided to create this rule that says, you can no longer file applications pro se unless you’re domiciled in the United States.
Jared Correia: Oh, interesting. Okay.
Emil Ali: Yeah. If you’re outside the United States, instead of targeting a country, they just said, if you’re outside the United States, you need to have an attorney. Sounds reasonable. Unfortunately, that’s not really in the budget of these Amazon sellers. So these Amazon sellers who are previously kind of using companies to do this, they started contracting with U.S. attorneys and saying, “Hey, we’ll prepare the trademark application. Could you just review it and file it?” And that’s what they were doing. But then there’s such volumes that they were, like, delegating the signing task to a paralegal.
Jared Correia: Oh, that makes sense. Yeah. That’s really fascinating.
Emil Ali: Yeah. And I totally see the point of the USPTO in trying to protect and make sure that trademark register is appropriate. But the fact of the matter is, most attorneys don’t know this. And when you have an immigration attorney that got a message from somebody in China saying, “Hey, can you help us with this? You’re an attorney. You’re eligible to do this,” but hasn’t really understood the rules. It’s kind of sad to suspend them fora year, and then–
Jared Correia: I know, yeah.
Emil Ali: —switching back, and then their state reciprocally will discipline them. Luckily, most states are like, “You know what? That doesn’t seem right.” And they have been, for the most part, lowering those sanctions.
Jared Correia: Oh, Lord, look at this (00:27:35). You know, it’s funny. I was going to ask you, like, why would you specialize in a practice area like this? But clearly a lot of issues for you to resolve, and it sounds like you’re very busy. That’s super helpful. All right, last question for you. More of a general question like, lawyers worry about ethics all the time, IP attorneys, other attorneys. And a common question I get is like, okay, what’s my threshold for taking action? Like, I screwed something up, right? Maybe it’s not a big problem, or at least I don’t think it’s a big problem. Like, when do you report something to your carrier? When do you reach out to an ethics counsel to get advisory opinion before you do things? Like how do you advise attorneys on that?
Emil Ali: Yeah, great question. So I actually did two of these this week, two reports to a carrier. And the way I outline it is it’s always best to talk to me, obviously. If you already work with me and just run it by me, right?. Because the easiest thing to do is blame it on me and say, “Emil told me to do this.”
Jared Correia: Oh, good. Can I do that?
Emil Ali: Yeah.
Jared Correia: I mean, not legal stuff, but just generally.
Emil Ali: Yeah, you can tell your wife Emil told you to do. When I’m talking to these folks, I like to understand their problem. So first, there’s an ethics issue, and then there’s a malpractice issue.
Jared Correia: Right.
Emil Ali: And as part of the malpractice issue, there’s a duty to report to your carrier in most policies. So let’s talk about the ethics issue first. The ABA has a great opinion on this. I don’t recall it offhand. I think it’s 495. It’s about mistakes, and it deals with whether you have a duty to report under Rule 1.4, and I’m going to summarize it very simply, and I’m going to leave out a lot of facts, but if it’s a current client and it’s a material mistake, you have a duty to report.
Jared Correia: Okay.
Emil Ali: If it’s not material, or if it’s a former client for a number of reasons, you don’t have to report it. It doesn’t mean you cannot, but it doesn’t mean you have to so it’s not an ethical obligation.
So let’s have an example of a client forgets to send an email to opposing counsel, analyze it. Right? Is it material? Well, I sent it the next day. Does that mean the offer is pulled? Well, that’s a material mistake versus oh, no problem, we’ll just file this one day late. But it’s not going to impact the case, right? Those are two different things.
If you’ve made a mistake and your client asks you, “Hey, did you already send this letter?” You know, don’t lie about it, but at the same time, it’s not necessarily something you need to affirmatively tell them, “Oh, I forgot to send this. I sent this the next day.” But if there’s something else that happens so, for example, a client forgets to file a document, and because of that, in a patent application, because of that, there’s now a one-year bar. Like, you did it after the one-year period. You didn’t file the non-provisional application. Now there’s literally nothing you can do, right? You’ve really royally screwed up. That’s going to be you have a duty to communicate to your client, and then you have a malpractice liability.
One, you kind of have a duty in your contract to not make admissions generally, but you have a duty to report to your carrier. Let’s say many of my clients do this. They’re like, “Emil, I want to pay you out of pocket. I don’t want my premiums to go up”. And I tell them, “I’m happy to do it, but I would highly not recommend it because you’re not going to be paying the bills”, but also, there’s just so much risk, right? Because if you fail to report, that’s one thing, but now, five months later, when they sue you, that’s not covered, right? You failed to report, and you took corrective action without the input of the carrier, which, depending on the policy, could be the thing that really kills you. And I’m not a big insurance guy. I don’t practice in that area, but I know enough to be dangerous, and I think that’s a really, really big issue when it comes to policies.
And then on top of that, usually upon renewal, you have to notify them of any pending or past investigations and lawsuits or errors and things that you’ve come to be aware of, and you fail to report it. Now, that’s a false statement on an insurance application, and that could be a misdemeanor or a felony in your state. There’s definitely a lot of landmines, but I think one thing I will tell you is that we all make mistakes, right? I’m the first one to tell my clients.
Jared Correia: Go ahead.
Emil Ali: No, I’m not infallible, right? You’ll find a missing period. I’ve read this 30-page document like 20 times, but I missed that one period. We all make mistakes.
Jared Correia: Yeah.
Emil Ali: But it’s how we move on from them. And half my job is walking clients through a terrible experience, right? They’re pissed off that their client complained about them. They’re scared that they’re going to lose their house or their business, and they’re going to lose their license, and there’s no end in sight. My job is I don’t know yet what that end will be. I have an idea, but I have to investigate their claims to me because we’re so self-interested that when we’re telling the attorney, “Oh, hey, Emil, here’s what happened.” We’re telling them one side of the story, right? So I need to do my investigation and kind of understand what’s going on, but part of it is I really need to calm them down. I can’t mislead them into thinking, “Oh, yeah, this is going to close with no action.” You didn’t do anything wrong, because part of it is taking corrective action.
So, yeah, sometimes I can tell you I don’t love being a lawyer, but I do still love my job, because by and large, I get to help people and I try to help people be the best lawyer that they can be, right? I know that’s very cliche, but I do really enjoy that aspect of it.
Jared Correia: Well, this was really interesting like, a lot of cool stuff in here. Emil, I appreciate you coming on. Can you stick around for our final segment?
Emil Ali: Sure. This is going to be the death star of questions that I probably don’t know the answer to.
Jared Correia: Yeah, in a nutshell. All right, everybody. We’ll take one final sponsor break so you can hear more about our sponsor companies and their latest service offerings. Then stay tuned for the rump roast. It’s even more supple than the roast beast.
Male: You like Legal Podcasts because you’re curious and want to be the best attorney you can be. I’m Dave Scriven-Young, host of Litigation Radio produced by ABA’s Litigation Section with Legal Talk Network. Search in your favorite podcast player for Litigation Radio to join me and my guests as we examine hot topics in litigation and topics that will help you to develop your litigation skills and build your practice. I hope you’ll check out Litigation Radio and join the ABA Litigation Section for access to all of the resources, relationships, and referrals you need to thrive as a litigator.
Jared Correia: Welcome back everybody. That’s right, we’re at the rear end of the Legal Toolkit once again. This is the rump roast. It’s a grab bag of short form topics all of my choosing. Why do I get to pick? Because I’m the host. Emil, we were talking before, and I think you were telling me you’re a pop culture expert, right? I cooked up something fun for you, or at least I think it’s fun. We’re going to call it, a day at the movies, and we’re going to be pretty literal about that.
So we are recording this podcast on July 21, 2023 and that happens to be the day that both the Barbie movie and the Oppenheimer movie come out in general release. People have been enamored of the juxtaposition of these two films coming out at the same time, and there’s this phenomenon called Barbenheimer that’s coming out.
Now, a lot of people are like, I don’t have to choose. I’ll see both movies, but that’s not how we roll at the Legal Toolkit. So I’m going to need you to make a choice, not only between Barbie and Oppenheimer though, we’re also going to transport you back in time to similarly disjointed release days, and you’ll have to pick between additional, unusual or unexpected pairings. Are you ready to play?
Emil Ali: I am ready.
Jared Correia: Okay. July 21, 2023, Barbie’s out, Oppenheimer is out, which one do you see and why?
Emil Ali: I would probably say I would much prefer to see Oppenheimer. However, I do have a young daughter, and I believe I — she’s almost three. She has yet to see a movie in the theaters.
Jared Correia: Really?
Emil Ali: Yeah. My son was that age when he saw his first movie. So yeah, so I have a feeling she’s not super into Barbie, but she does play with her Barbie doll and all that. So I think that might be the movie that we’ll probably end up seeing, probably not in the first two weeks, but maybe probably –
Jared Correia: Probably not. No, it’s funny. I’m the same way. Like I do want to see the Oppenheimer movie. I love Christopher Nolan, but I will probably end up at Barbie. Girl dads, what are you going to do? All right, here’s another one, June 23, 1989 Batman — the original Batman with Michael Keaton came out on the same day as Honey, I Shrunk The Kids with Rick Moranis. What is your preference, sir?
Emil Ali: Wow, that’s a blast from the past. I remember watching Honey, I Shrunk the Kids on TV. I didn’t see it in the movie theater, but I remember seeing it on TV like every year, and even though I did love Batman, I love that original TV show as well. I probably would say, Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.
Jared Correia: Oh I mean like Rick Moranis is a boss. He crushes those movies and I’m basically retired. Living the dream. All right, well, let’s dive down a little bit deeper into this because I got bonus Batman content for you. July 18, 2008, Christopher Nolan’s Batman, The Dark Knight comes out on the same day as Mamma Mia. So this is not the first time that Christopher Nolan has been in this particular predicament. What do you see there?
Emil Ali: I would probably do Batman.
Jared Correia: Solid choice.
Emil Ali: Yeah. I don’t think I’ve seen Mamma Mia the movie, but I definitely have seen the musical, which is fun. I mean, everyone knows ABBA, right?
Jared Correia: Yes. Dark Knight was awesome. I thought it was a great movie. Okay, here’s another one. Blast from the past. May 21, 1980, The Empire Strikes Back comes out on the same day as The Shining. Believe it or not, I feel like that’s a tough choice. Where do you go?
Emil Ali: I would say Star Wars.
Jared Correia: All right. Are you a Star Wars guy or is that just like –
Emil Ali: You know, I used to be a Star Wars guy growing up, or I would say actually more of a Star Trek guy, but the general category, I guess the era that I grew up in was The Next Generation. That was like my favorite.
Jared Correia: Oh, Captain Picard.
Emil Ali: Yeah. Yeah.
Jared Correia: I’m not a big Star Wars guy. I’ll probably see The Shining, but I think that’s a tough choice. All right, I got some more for you. March 31, 1999, The Matrix is playing in movie theaters alongside Ten Things I Hate About You. So we got another Heath Ledger thing going on here.
Emil Ali: Okay, so I actually saw The Matrix in the theaters. I think like writhing the first — I think probably came out on a Thursday, and I probably saw it on that Friday with friends.
Jared Correia: You were stoked to see it then.
Emil Ali: Yeah. It was just — I mean, the idea of it was so cool and I will tell you my mind was blown. I was like, “Are we living in the Matrix?”
Jared Correia: Like, “Oh, my God, we’re in the simulation.”
Emil Ali: Right. Yeah.
Jared Correia: Here’s another one. June 8, 1985, we’ve got a Spooky Special Gremlins coming out the same day as Ghostbusters, which is something I did not know until earlier today.
Emil Ali: I have not seen Gremlins. I have seen Ghostbusters, so I would probably say Ghostbusters.
Jared Correia: Ghostbusters is a way better movie. I can confirm. Okay, November 12, 1993. Back in the time machine. The Piano with Holly Hunter comes out alongside Ernest Rides Again. The sequel to Ernest Goes to Camp. Do you remember those movies? And which one would you see?
Emil Ali: So I have not seen either of those movies, and I will say the Earnest movies were always very odd, so I’m not sure — I would skip that day.
Jared Correia: The answer is never the Earnest movie. Okay. This is fun. I got two more for you. November 22, 1995, Toy Story is out on the same day as a very dissimilar movie, Casino with Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci. What do you think?
Emil Ali: I guess it depends on how old I am at the time, right?
Jared Correia: True. Probably not going to go see Casino as an eight-year-old.
Emil Ali: Correct. But Toy Story, again, I think I saw that on TV or VHS or whatever, not in the theater, but it’s not my favorite movie, right?
Jared Correia: Really? Wow.
Emil Ali: I don’t love Toy Story.
Jared Correia: Oh, wow.
Emil Ali: Soundtrack was pretty good, right?
Jared Correia: Yeah. So Casino, you’re a Casino guy. Let’s assume you’re an adult.
Emil Ali: So adult wise, unless I’m taking my kids, I’d probably do Casino.
Jared Correia: Yeah, I mean, Goodfellas I feel like was better, Godfather was obviously better, and I really like Toy Story. All right, let’s see if we’re aligned on the last one. I got one more for you. We got our Christmas holiday special. November 7, 2003, Elf with Will Ferrell comes out on the same day as Love Actually, which is a movie my wife is like in love with. So what do you choose?
Emil Ali: Those are both solid movies.
Jared Correia: Yes.
Emil Ali: I don’t like the idea of watching Elf every year, right? It comes on a lot.
Jared Correia: You’ve had enough of Elf?
Emil Ali: Yeah.
Jared Correia: So like something else.
Emil Ali: Yeah. So maybe I’d say Love Actually.
Jared Correia: All right.
Emil Ali: It’s a good movie, yeah. I like my rom coms.
Jared Correia: I didn’t necessarily have high hopes for this segment when we talked earlier, but you crushed it, man. Thank you. That was great. I feel like I should have more movies teed up, but we’ll do something again next time. Thanks for coming on. I appreciate it.
Emil Ali: Thanks for having me.
Jared Correia: If you want to find out more about Emil Ali & McCabe Ali, LLP, visit appropriately enough, mccabeali.com. That’s M-C-C-A-B-E-A-L-I.com. mccabeali.com. Now, for those of you listening in Hollywood, California, check out our Barbenheimer playlist. We’ve got some serious songs. We’ve got some silly songs because we don’t have to choose. Sadly, I’ve run out of time today to talk about nuclear fission, but that’s okay, because I’m afraid of the consequences it will have for humanity being told the new nuclear bomb has already been developed. That’s awkward. I guess we’re fucked. This is Jared Correia reminding you that we girls can do anything.