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WHAT WE’RE WATCHING

NEW BREED  – Earlier this week, we ruined your post-Labor Day return to work by going over all the ways young lawyers are struggling during the pandemic. And, while it’s certainly true that remote work has thrown a wrench into the development of associates—who right now are deprived of the ability to pop into a senior attorney’s office with a quick question, shadow them in court or network at industry events—there may be an upside to growing in harsh conditions. For example, as bankruptcy attorney Joseph Pack of Pack Law in Miami noted to Raychel Lean, good work arguably carries added weight in an environment devoid of some of the more subjective factors of professional life. “A great letter is a great letter, but a great letter becomes a lot more important when writing and telecommunications becomes your main mode of communication,” Pack said. The experience of building a legal career in quarantine may also lead to a more resilient generation of attorneys. “Everyone needs to take comfort in the fact that everyone’s kind of going through the same thing or something similar and dealing with it in their own way,” Pack said.

CONTRACTING COVID – We’ve seen plenty of lawsuits alleging a defendant tried to use COVID-19 as cover to squirm out of a contractual obligation, but a new lawsuit by Family Dollar Inc. accuses one of of its soon-to-be ex-vendors of using the pandemic to strong-arm the discount variety store chain into signing a new contract. Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit Wednesday in North Carolina Western District Court on behalf of Family Dollar. The complaint pursues claims against Interface Security Systems LLC in connection with its provision of phone, internet and alarm services. According to the suit, the defendant threatened to cut off service to 2,500 Family Dollar stores by Sept. 30 after initially agreeing to let the retailer have until 2021 to transition to a new vendor. By doing so in the midst of a pandemic, ISS is “essentially blackmailing Family Dollar into signing a new, lucrative three-year contract for surveillance video services,” the complaint alleges. Counsel have not yet appeared for the defendant. Read the full complaint and stay up to date on major litigation nationwide with Law.com’s Legal Radar.

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Zack Needles

Zack Needles is Global Managing Editor, Regional Brands at ALM. He is also the Managing Editor of The Legal Intelligencer, Pennsylvania Law Weekly, Delaware Business Court Insider and Delaware Law Weekly. Contact him at 215-557-2373 or [email protected] On Twitter: @ZackNeedlesTLI.

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