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Sen. Kaufman Questioning at Judge Sotomayor Confirmation Hearing

SOTOMAYOR: And then the fashion designer -- and -- and I think there are many people who know how famous that fashion house design is -- had trademark questions. And I participated with the partner who founded that practice within the law firm, and she had a very untimely death.

Actually, she came from her home ill to vote on my partnership at the firm, and I became a partner. And a couple of months later, she passed away. But she had worked with me and -- and introduced me to the intellectual property area of law.

SOTOMAYOR: I worked on real estate matters. I worked on contract matters of all kinds, licensing agreements, financing agreements, banking questions. There was such a wide berth of issues that I dealt with.

KAUFMAN: And how did that practice help you on the district court and then on the court of appeals?

SOTOMAYOR: Actually, one of the lessons I learned from my commercial practice, I learned in the context, first, of my grain commodity training. But in my work, as it related to all commercial disputes, there were one main lesson. In business, the predictability of law may be the most necessary, in the sense that people organize their business relationships by how they understand the Court's interpret their contracts.

I remember being involved in any number of litigations, where, at the end of the litigation, as part of the settlement, I would draft up a settlement agreement between the parties. And quite often it involved creating an ongoing new business relationship; or a temporary continuation of a business relationship so they could wind down.


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