Friday, March 04, 2005

A swift change in circumstances at the law firm...

I am not sure if this journal entry belongs in this blog, but it was an important experience for me, especially because of the change of the situation at the law firm from one moment to the next.

Dear Journal,

I am starting to feel as if I am pigeonholed into a specific area of law, namely laches, marking, and general patent litigation. The cases I am reading are starting to seem redundant, each case referring to the other. The main issues of the case and in my opinion the bulk of the research has already been completed; the cases have been found, the arguments have been structured, and the hearing has occurred and has been determined in our favor.

So it is now only a matter of time before the court adjudicates the facts of the case based on the law we have laid out. Yet I am still shepardizing and reading the mentioned cases to check for variations in the law through subsequent cases. Most of what I am finding is the same elements being applied over and over to different sets of facts. The law seems to be laid out, and it seems we have flushed out the rules. Am I wasting my time? This work seems redundant and a bit boring. It pales in comparison to my original discovery of the Aukerman case, which broke all the former precedents and set the rules for which our case relies upon, or the Knorr-Bremse case which changed the rules for when a jury may make an adverse inference based on an infringer declining to disclose whether it received an opinion letter on the validity of its patent.

[Break in time; continued writing journal an hour later]

Since I started this journal entry, I had a visit from the attorney who was working with me on the case. He looked relaxed because he was no longer working on the case. My work with him was done. He is now working on a new issue with a new client. Wednesday’s hearing ended our function in the litigation; we served our part. Any further work I do on the case is to be forwarded to another attorney who is working on the next segment of the case. Our role was to survive the hearing regarding the summary judgment motion, and we accomplished our task.

This is strange, because now my work is done on this task, and so today I will finish up my research on the topic, I will tie up loose ends, and I will become social once again, speaking with partners and taking on new assignments. My feelings have gone from frustration (above) where I felt that I was being redundant to now a feeling of loneliness, knowing that my work on the subject has been completed. This chapter of my externship experience is now closed, and until now, I never stepped back to appreciate how much we worked and to reflect upon the strenuous efforts we exerted. On second thought, the whole experience was a rush, and I didn’t feel it until now that the pressure is off.

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