Rakofsky Settles with St. Thomas School of Law and Deborah Hackerson

University of St. Thomas School of Law

Joseph Rakofsky, who sued 81 people and entities for defamation (including me), has settled his suit against two of them. The University of St. Thomas School of Law and one of its staffers, Deborah Hackerson, have paid Rakofsky $5,000.

A copy of the stipulation and release, obtained from the County Clerk’s office, is here:St.ThomasLawSettlement

The allegation against Ms. Hackerson comes from paragraph 186 of the Amended Complaint:

186. On April 6,2011, ST. TIIOMAS through HACKERSON, with malice and hate, in a grossly irresponsible manner without due consideration for the standards of information gathering and dissemination ordinarily followed by responsible parties, in reckless disregard for the truth, published that “Recent Law Grad’s Incompetence Leads to Mstrial.” However, there was no mistrial, either in whole or in part for incompetence on the part of RAKOFSKY, the “recent law grad” referred to in their publication.

As previously noted, since I am local counsel to many of the defendants, I am publishing documents from the public record, but doing so without comment.

Interesting note about this matter, though, is that I am wearing three different hats: Defendant, counsel, and journalist.

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16 Responses Leave a comment

  • Ken 2011.8.4 at 17:57 | Quote

    What a freakishly humiliating capitulation to evil.

    I mean, settling a slip-and-fall because the settlement is less than the defense cost is one thing.

    But a law school — nominally an institution concerned with the rule of law, freedom of expression, and legal excellence — bending over for this? Pathetic. Just pathetic.

  • Max Kennerly 2011.8.4 at 20:57 | Quote

    “This stipulation shall not be filed in any court …” and yet, there it is, filed in court.

    Congratulations, St. Thomas, for officially becoming the worst law school in the country. There’s stiff competition, but your sheer cowardice in the face of a trivial, frivolous threat sealed the deal.

    I wonder what current and potential students will think. I don’t think I’d be too keen to “learn” from a school that can’t even competently defend itself from one of the most frivolous lawsuits in recent memory.

  • Dan 2011.8.4 at 21:08 | Quote

    Maybe I’ve missed it, but I don’t see anywhere in this document where the Rakofsky Law Firm releases its “claims” against these two defendants.

  • Eddie 2011.8.5 at 08:48 | Quote

    Disgraceful that Travelers paid a dime to Rakofsky. I know a number of people at Toomey’s office and am gonna give them grief over this.

  • Mark B. 2011.8.5 at 12:31 | Quote

    Interesting to note that the payment is to delivered to a residential address on Wall St, not the “office” down the block or the New Jersey HQ.

  • Rachel 2011.8.6 at 02:41 | Quote

    @Eddie – LOL. You’re going to give them grief for this rather than being a TTTToilet law degree diploma mill ripping off its students for an outrageous sticker price of almost $100k in tuition?

  • andrews 2011.8.8 at 12:39 | Quote

    Surely this settlement will enhance every reader’s understanding and appropriate respect for both the school and their attorneys.

  • Nick Spirtos 2011.8.9 at 12:49 | Quote

    How ironic. For the first time ever, I logged on to St. Thomas’ website and what was I greated with? An advertisement for an upcoming public debate hosted by St. Thomas and the Holloran Center for Ethical Leadership in the Professions.
    How sad that an educational institution such as St. Thomas, that is also a Catholic organization, would actually settle with Rakofsky. Shame on St. Thomas.
    I understand the financial wisdom in settling cases for nuisance value. But some cases cry out for full unblown litigation – no matter the cost. St. Thomas’ settlement only supports further frivolous and unethical conduct. ST. Thomas has demonstrated nothing but cowardice and a lack of commitment to ethical conduct and Catholic values.

  • Avenger 2011.8.10 at 19:43 | Quote

    Loser pays, anyone ? Cases like this should be defended with the loser footing the entire bill

  • Bill 2011.8.14 at 08:36 | Quote

    Why would they settle when there was no jurisdiction over them? If they defaulted, Rakofsky would have had to go through the effort of defaulting them to get an unenforceable judgment. By now, Rakofsky must realize that unless waived, there is no jurisdiction over the out-of-staters that he sued.

    Eric, this means that you and the other fighters must redouble your efforts to get significant sanctions against Rakofsky to disgorge him and from the “profits” of this frivolouslawsuit.

  • Grapes of Wrath 2011.8.24 at 16:47 | Quote

    Sour grapes, anyone? I think you all are a little sad that you didn’t figure out a way to make $5,000 appear out of thin air.

  • Eddie 2011.9.2 at 10:17 | Quote

    Was checking to see what the status of the motions was on e-law and I saw that JR has filed a new lawsuit, Pro Se of course, against another attorney claiming all sorts of nonsense including breach of contract. In his latest suit he basically claims his client in another case was stolen from him by another attorney, the defendant in the latest lawsuit. What is really interesting is that JR claims that for a case in which he was retained in mid September 2010 and that he was involved in up until April or May of this year he worked an astounding 1100 hours on the case and is entitled to $385,000 for his time. That’s approximately 137 hours a month on one client which doesn’t even take into consideration all the holidays and vacations and time he states in his complaint he was out of the country. Talk about diligently working hard for your client!! I guess now we know why he had such little time to adequately prepare himself for the Dontrell Deaner murder trial.

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