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Texas Criminal Pattern Jury Charges: General, Evidentiary & Ancillary Instructions

The State Bar of Texas recently published an update to its Criminal Pattern Jury Charges with a new volume of General, Evidentiary, and Ancillary Instructions. Updated for the first time in five years, it includes new commentary and case references along with its sample charges. Specifically, the 2018 edition has added instruction on slow pleas (submissions not tantamount to guilty pleas), the corpus deliciti rule (requiring proof beyond a confession for conviction), and sample Allen instructions (instructing a deadlocked jury to continue deliberations).

The purpose of the Pattern Jury Charges is to assist the bench and bar in preparing the court’s charge in jury cases. They are general in nature, requiring an analysis of the specific case at and hand, and may be used as the starting point for drafting the instructions for trial court. The volume provides an outline that explicitly states the relevant statutes and legal definitions and then applies the law to the facts in plain langua…
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Intellectual Property and the University

Intellectual Property (IP) has become a major revenue source for colleges and universities. Trademarks, patents, and even trade secrets and copyrights are increasingly used as a money making opportunities for institutes of higher learning. In his book, The Branding of the American Mind, Jacob Rooksby argues that developing this new revenue source creates a tension between the university’s promotion of the public good and the private rights that intellectual property is designed to protect. The first chapter explores the tension starting with the Harvard OncoMouse. A mouse that Harvard sought to patent because it was unusually susceptible to cancers, making it ideal for medical testing. The second chapter is a broad overview of IP law as a whole. The remainder of the book explores the central thesis of the book, the tension between advancing the public good and protecting intellectual property rights, through each of the main areas of intellectual property (trademarks, copyright, pat…

Electronic Evidence for Family Law Attorneys

The ABA's Section of Family Law has recently published Electronic Evidence for Family Law Attorneysby Timothy J. Conlon and Anthony Hughes. This book, now available in the law library, begins with an introduction that discusses, among other things, what distinguishes family law from other areas of law with respect to electronic evidence. The chapter that covers integrating electronic evidence into one's practice focuses on several matters related to the attorney client relationship such as data security, e-mails, social media habits, and conducting a preliminary inventory of data assets. Deletion of electronic records, and gathering open source intelligence are also discussed. The authors also examine the preservation of webpages, text messages, e-mails, and social media and cloud services. The selection and the use of experts and obtaining access to electronic records are among the other topics explored.

The Law of Later-Life Healthcare and Decision Making

The O’Quinn Law Library recently acquired the second edition of The Law of Later-Life Healthcare and Decision Making, by Lawrence A. Frolik. This book, a publication of the American Bar Association, is a comprehensive guide to health-related legal issues facing the elderly. It contains sections on paying for health care, long-term care housing options, paying for long-term care, the legal implications of mental incapacity, and end-of-life decision making. The second edition has been updated to reflect recent statutory changes and developments in case law. The book is available in the library at KF3608.A4F76 2017.

The following titles in the library’s collection are recommended for further reading in this area: Medicare and Medicaid Guide – KF3608.A4.C64Master Medicare Guide – KF3608.A4.M347 Mastering Elder Law – KF390.A4B73 2015

Critical Thinking: Tools for Evaluating Research

In the era of fake news, information overload, and pseudoscience, critical thinking is more important than ever. While critical thinking it is becoming increasingly necessary, it can be a difficult skill to develop. Critical Thinking: Tools for Evaluating Research by Peter Nardi, Professor Emeritus of Sociology at Pitzer College, is here to help. The book focuses on teaching people about common errors in thinking, methods to evaluate and interpret information, and how to apply them in everyday life. In seven chapters it covers numeracy (understanding and using numbers); sampling and generalizability; probability and coincidence; visual thinking (interpreting graphs and charts); correlation and causation; scientific thinking; and fact, opinion, and logical reasoning.

Clear and concise, this book uses a variety of examples from academia, the government, the media, and others, to illustrate commons errors in thinking and methods to overcome them. While intended for students, this book is…

Landmarks of a Century in Oil and Gas Law: Twenty Cases That Shaped Texas Oil and Gas Jurisprudence

The law of oil and gas built through Texas jurisprudence has informed the laws of states and countries across the globe. But many still find that it is a daunting task to understand the cases that have built these laws and their respectiveimportance. Recently, the State Bar of Texas Section on Oil, Gas, and Energy Resources Law published Landmarks of a Century in Oil and Gas Law: Twenty Cases That Shaped Texas Oil and Gas Jurisprudence.

As the title suggests, the book highlights twenty of the most impactful oil and gas opinions of the century.The text of each opinion is printed, and then followed by expert commentary regarding the case, its origins, and implications. Most of these expert analyses are two to four pages long and are written with the non-expert in mind. While I admit to merely skimming the opinions, I found the commentaries both readable and illuminating.
Also included in the book is commentary from the Law Center’s own Professor Emeritus Jacqueline Weaver, one of the w…

The ABA Cybersecurity Handbook, 2nd Edition

The ABA's Cybersecurity Legal Task Force has recently published the second edition of The ABA Cybersecurity Handbook: A Resource for Attorneys, Law Firms, and Professionals. This book contains fifteen chapters, each authored by cyber legal experts and is co-edited by Jill D. Rhodes and Robert S. Litt. The authors cover cybersecurity risks, the legal obligations of attorneys to provide data security, and such obligations arising from ethics rules. There are chapters in Part III that discuss considerations for large firms, in-house, public interest, and government lawyers. Data practice training, creating a culture of awareness, and cyber insurance for firms are discussed in Part IV. The appendices contain selected statutes, regulations, and cases, lists of best practice guidelines issued by certain states and the federal government, lists of relevant cases, and relevant ethics opinions from the ABA and state bar associations, among other materials. This book is now available in the…