MARRIAGE OF INCONVENIENCE - When Allen & Overy and Shearman & Sterling announced their merger plans, they said it was “driven by clients’ needs for a seamless global offering of the highest quality and depth.” But, as’s Maria Dinzeo reports while in-house attorneys agree that broader expertise can indeed be a major upside of law firm mergers, they also say there can be dark sides, such as new conflicts, administrative hassles and cultural tensions. Kimberly DeCarrera, who was a legal chief and chief financial officer for a nearly a decade before starting her own fractional general counsel business, said conflicts checks are always the No. 1 concern for legal teams when news of a law firm merger breaks. “Obviously there are headaches any time a relationship changes,” DeCarrera said.

DEEP TROUBLE - “Deepfakes,” which have become more sophisticated and easier to create given the democratization of generative AI tools like Midjourney and DALL-E, are inevitably poised to permeate the legal process. As a result, harmless memes like Pope Francis looking fly in a puffer jacket may soon give way to more sinister deceptions. Courts and e-discovery teams have some tools to deal with the flourishing deepfake technology—but, as’s Isha Marathe reports, much is also up in the air, like the emotional impact on juries, and the potential for long, costly discovery fights.

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