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Life of a Law Student, University of Houston Law Center

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Hurricane Ike Roils Houston Legal Community

By: Luke Gilman | Other Posts by
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The JP Morgan Chase Tower in downtown Houston lost most of the windows on the southeast side from the ground floor to somewhere near the 30th. The damage purportedly came from gravel and debris from a neighboring building.

The streets were littered with glass and debris including whole file cabinets and scattered documents marked "confidential." Yikes.

Some partners have been told not to expect to resume normal working operations there for 3-6 months. And yet…

All of our Blackberrys are working

The AP story, Houston port, airports wait to reopen after Ike, gives us a great reminder of the state of modern law practice -

Law firm Andrews Kurth LLP, headquartered in the JPMorgan tower, planned to farm out its 250 lawyers based there to other locations in Texas but continue doing its work — "All of our BlackBerrys are working," said spokeswoman Ashley Ronald.

Law practice, more than most industries, has the necessity for and the ability to develop contingency plans and backup systems to ‘take a licking and keep on ticking’  – it will be interesting to know what Houston law firms take from the Hurricane Ike experience. For the Galveston bar, it will be interesting to see what emerges. The Houston Chronicle is estimating that Galveston’s tax base may be cut in half. On the other hand the resulting damage may result in its own flood of insurance litigation.

For law students, the hurricane came in the middle of OCI, the on campus interviewing that starts the hiring process for most large and mid-sized law firms. Although interviews are being rescheduled and the hurricane presumably wouldn’t affect long-term hiring needs, it certainly doesn’t help.

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Category: advice to law students, houston and harris county, texas


One Response

  1. Erik says:

    Glad to see you made it through. I found it particularly disappointing that UH opened up on Tuesday with this still in disarray. Sigh.

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