Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
AJRESQ
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:45 pm

Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby AJRESQ » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:41 pm

I know there is a lot of beef between this place and places like JD Underground. I think the truth is somewhere in the middle (law is great for some, bad for others), but I did want to chime in and give you guys the best advice I have on choosing a law school. I hope you find my post helpful. For what it's worth, I enjoy practicing law, and I hope you will like it as much as I do. In any event, here are my thoughts on selecting a law school:

1. If you get into a T14, go. Going to a T14 will open a lot of doors for you, regardless if where you practice. This is particularly true if you want to practice in BIGLAW, work for the Department of Justice, clerk at the federal level, etc. If you are dead set on BIGLAW, I would try and go T14 at almost any cost. While you can certainly go BIGLAW from TT - TTTT, the odds are against you, as you probably need to be top 15%ish of your class first year. Which means you have an 85% chance of not being BIGLAW material. This can vary depending on your geographic area.

2. Outside of the T14, geography is more important than the ranking of the law school, generally. Hear me out: Take for example Washington D.C. DC has a lot of great law schools -- American, Georgetown, George Washington, etc. They are all T1 schools. Compare with Philadelphia, that has mostly TT law schools -- Temple, Villanova, Rutgers, Dickinson, etc. You might think that if you want to practice in Philadelphia, you're better off going to the better DC school. WRONG. You're better off going to a local school if you want to practice in that area. If you are from the Philadelphia area, and want to practice in or around Philadelphia go to a local Philadelphia school. Do not go to a the higher ranked school just because it's ranked higher. This is true even in BIGLAW -- the BIGLAW firms routinely take the local graduates to work in the local offices. Why would someone who has all their ties to DC (and potential clients) want to work in Iowa? Philadelphia firms aren't going to bus in a bunch of D.C. grads just because the tier of law school is higher -- they're going to hire the best and brightest from the local schools. Same with the mid-sized Philadelphia county firms -- they want people who have local ties to the area. Also consider: most of your clients will be generated from your friends and family. You want to be close to them.

3. Consider your market. Areas like New York City and Washington D.C. are tiny. There are a lot of law schools, There are not enough jobs. However, compare those areas to an area like Pennsylvania where there are only a few law schools (Penn, Villanova, Temple, Pitt, Dickinson, Duquesne... plus Widener and Rutgers are close) for the entire STATE. Even though jobs in Philadelphia are competitive, there is work in the surrounding counties. Often mid-sized county firms pay close to what large Philadelphia / Pittsburgh firms pay. So, while you might attend a great school in DC like American or GW, ranked higher than all the Philly schools, in my opinion, you have a much better chance of success from a Philadelphia TT school like Villanova, Rutgers, or Temple, because the market isn't as saturated.

What I'm saying is, you can be successful from a TT or TTT or TTTT based on your market. For example -- Delaware only has 1 law school, TTTT Widener. However, Widener grads tend to fare decently because they're the only law school in Delaware. Comparatively, I would not recommend going to a TTT in New York or DC because there are not enough jobs for the T14s and TT schools -- let alone the lower ranked school. I think the reason people have a lot of beef with Seton Hall is because that area is so damn saturated. I would not want to practice in North Jersey or New York City. There are too many law schools, not enough work. The out of state firms will assume you wanted to practice in NYC but couldn't cut it, so now you're settling for Pennsylvania / Delaware. Conversely, if you went to school in Pennsylvania, it's assumed you live in Pennsylvania and want to practice there.

4. It's a marathon not a sprint. A lot of you might think your life is over because you didn't get into a BIGLAW firm (or your life is set now that you got into one). That isn't the case. Sadly, there are many people who get into a BIGLAW firm, go 5 - 7 years, and then find they "are not partner material." Imagine having to start a practice from scratch, going from making $155k+ a year to $50k a year with a wife and kids! In all that time in a BIGLAW firm, they might never have taken a deposition or tried a case at the federal level. Conversely, a lot of grads who start out in small law firms have their own firm within 5 - 7 years of practice and are making $155k+ a year with little to no chance of getting laid off -- since they're in charge. I'm not trying to discourage you from BIGLAW -- a lot of people love it and make great careers out of it. I'm just saying that the game isn't over just because you get in (or don't get in) at a BIGLAW firm. There are plenty of us doing well who aren't at a BIGLAW firm. Dollar per hour, a lot of guys at small firms or their own firms make more, especially a few years out. This is why I recommend practicing in an area where you have ties, because your friends, family, and social network will become a source of referrals for you.

5. You don't always know how things will turn out, and your school ranking and grades will not always dictate that. For example, I clerked at a small law firm doing municipal law. I worked for an associate who did personal injury work. That firm was bought out by a mid-sized firm, and then the mid-sized firm was bought out by the BIGLAW firm. The associate I used to work for? Now he's a partner at the BIGLAW firm. The firm and his practice was profitable enough for the BIGLAW firm to just buy him out and make him a partner. Another guy I'm close with was fired from his first small law firm only to later become an associate at a BIGLAW firm and state senator. There are a lot of paths that can't be planned out. A lot of smaller law firms and practitioners figure out a way to be profitable, and either continue on their own or get bought out by BIGLAW.

6. Your grades and tier of law school aren't that important for smaller law firms -- especially after you have experience. Personally, I don't really care where a person went to law school, and I stopped paying attention to the law school rankings after I was accepted to law school. I have no idea what school is ranked where. If I were going to take on an associate (we may soon), where that person went to law school wouldn't be important. What I would be looking for is enthusiasm for the subject matter (complex commercial litigation), charisma and a "can do" attitude, demonstrated research and writing ability, entrepreneurial spirit (i.e. you want to generate business and grow with the firm), and someone I enjoy spending long hours with. (an ability to talk intelligently about local sports teams would help you). With that said, going to a good law school and having decent grades makes it easier to lateral into a BIGLAW firm if that's what you want to do.

7. As for costs, $130k for undergraduate and law is steep. However, in the grand scheme of things, it's not that much money. It's hardly crippling debt -- the average cost of your first house will be about $230k. Law can be a real bitch at the beginning, paying only $50k a year for the first few years. However, once you're past those first few years, I would say the average salary is $75k - $120k, assuming of course, you're developed an area of practice and book of business. If you make $75k for 15 years, you've made a lot more than your initial $130k investment -- that's a lot better of a return that you would get on real estate. Who buys a house for $130k and then sells it 15 years later for over a million dollars? Not a lot of people. Your pay can vary a lot on the type of work you take on. Your practice area will dictate a lot of the $$$ you make in the next 10 years.

Anyway, I hope that helps and gives you guys something to chew on. Let me know if you have any questions. I came across this site while doing research from my own legal BLAWG and I saw there is some type of war with the JD Underground / anti-law school folks, and the prospective law students. I wanted to chime in a bit. I will probably not be around too much, as while I'm sure you're all very nice people, I don't see spending time on this board as a great way to develop my practice. That's probably why you don't get a lot of insight from a lot of successful attorneys -- we're busy working and developing a practice.

Also, I want to add, I see where everyone who is anti-law school is coming from. In a tight market, it's easy to listen to all the law school "statistics", put a lot of $$$ into a legal education, and then find out all that's out there is document review. I don't blame them at all for feeling screwed. Just make sure you consider the demand for lawyers in your area before sinking $130k+ into a legal education. Don't get your employment information from your school -- ask lawyers how tight the demand for associates is in the area. Also understand that you might need to make $50k a year for the first few years, but know that will mostly likely increase as you develop a practice area and add value to your clients / a law firm. A first year associate is not usually worth $50k, as there is a steep learning curve. Law school is not good preparation for actual practice. Try and take a lot of trial practice classes if they're available.

User avatar
nick637
Posts: 246
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby nick637 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:44 pm

Thank you for your insight!

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Mar 27, 2010 2:46 pm

This seems rather insightful (and confirming of many things that TLSers have heard elsewhere). Thank you for sharing.

User avatar
jss1100
Posts: 105
Joined: Wed May 20, 2009 6:25 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby jss1100 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 3:42 pm

Thanks for this post.

newyorklaw23
Posts: 82
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 3:52 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby newyorklaw23 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:30 pm

Any advice for people looking at schools just outside the t14? Many students don't quite make the cut for the t14 but are still interested in NY/DC/LA/CHI etc. For example, would you recommend Fordham over schools ranked 15-25 for someone who would like to practice in NY?

User avatar
FunkyJD
Posts: 1039
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2009 3:38 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby FunkyJD » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:37 pm

Thanks OP; I bookmarked this for future reference.

User avatar
Ragged
Posts: 1509
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 12:39 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby Ragged » Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:40 pm

tl;dr but probably will when I'm bored.

istorm88
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2010 11:33 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby istorm88 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 5:00 pm

Thank you for the post. It covered all the topics myself and I'm sure many other prospective law school students struggle with on a routine basis; I know I flip-flop on what my best path is on an hourly basis.

keg411
Posts: 5935
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:10 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby keg411 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 5:02 pm

Thanks for writing this. Very helpful.

debbiestevens
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat May 02, 2009 9:22 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby debbiestevens » Sat Mar 27, 2010 5:17 pm

Thanks for the post. How easy is it to transition into the federal govt. from the private sector? I can't work very many hours due to the family situation. I hear that govt. is typically normal hours (9-5). What advice if you don't desire a heavy workload and want sane hours?

AJRESQ
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby AJRESQ » Sat Mar 27, 2010 6:49 pm

newyorklaw23 wrote:Any advice for people looking at schools just outside the t14? Many students don't quite make the cut for the t14 but are still interested in NY/DC/LA/CHI etc. For example, would you recommend Fordham over schools ranked 15-25 for someone who would like to practice in NY?


Get really good grades and see how many people from the law school you are considering find meaningful legal work in those areas. (NOT document review). It would also be very helpful to have a skill before you went into law school. For instance, if you have a background in construction, you might be a valuable asset to a construction law firm. Similarly, if you have a background in finance, a firm that focuses on serving financial institutions might think you're an asset (lol irony... finance joke).

A word of caution: I know too many people who went to decent law schools, incurred a great deal of debt, then moved to one of those areas and couldn't find any work. (NYC in particular. Try being from TTTT Widener and moving to NYC... you'll be lucky to find doc review jobs. However, a TTTT Widener grad will more often than not find something in Delaware). Always remember that you have a 15% chance of being in the top 15% of your class. Meaning there is an 85% chance you won't be in the top of your class. Plan accordingly.

If you're dead set on one of those areas and a T14 isn't realistic, what I would do is make an assessment in each of those areas. Do the area firms tend to hire local graduates or look outside for higher ranked grads? For instance, here in Philly, they tend to hire graduates of local law schools over people outside the state from "better" law schools. (i.e. a Temple grad has a good shot at landing at a BIGLAW or mid-sized firm in Philly, but the lawyers from D.C. will have a tougher time. I guess the rationale is they don't want someone from D.C. seeing Philly as a second rate area w/ second rate firms. Plus, again, if you're local to the area, you'll develop a client base just by virtue of knowing people in the area).

I don't know how many law schools are in LA or CHI, but I do know there are several in and just outside DC and NYC. Along those lines,I know far too many unemployed/underemployed grads from Seton Hall, American, GW, Brooklyn, etc. My humable advice would be, unless you get into a T14, I would avoid DC and NYC, unless you have a connection into a law firm or a skill outside of law you can bring to a firm. Otherwise there is just too much risk. You might also consider starting in West Virginia or upstate New York and then moving into the city once you have experience and a book of business.

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7109
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby los blancos » Sat Mar 27, 2010 6:53 pm

FunkyJD wrote:Thanks OP; I bookmarked this for future reference.


+1

AJRESQ
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby AJRESQ » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:07 pm

debbiestevens wrote:Thanks for the post. How easy is it to transition into the federal govt. from the private sector? I can't work very many hours due to the family situation. I hear that govt. is typically normal hours (9-5). What advice if you don't desire a heavy workload and want sane hours?


It depends on what you did in the private sector and what the government's needs are. My best advice for getting a government job is to go into politics. Volunteer for campaigns and try running one. (although you won't get paid much and the hours are a pain). At the very least, know a few "political people" who will go to bat for you. Government 9-5 jobs are often more about connections than merit.

Also, don't go into litigation. Litigation has all kinds of status conferences,hearings, depositions across the state, etc. You will spend days preparing for trials and depositions.

Private fields I would consider are worker's compensation defense, administrative law, estate planning, in-house counsel, real estate transactional, municipal and zoning, etc. Field I would avoid: personal injury, commercial litigation, insurance defense, anything that involves volume work (i.e. personal bankruptcy, foreclosure defense). Avoid firms that have a minimum billable hour requirement... a lot of them require around 2400 a year, which means you'll be working a lot. Some firms just want 9-5 associates who get paid around $40k - $50k a year.

If you have very good grades, another option is to be a professional law clerk for a judge. I know a few graduates who have clerked their entire careers and then gone on to teach. Other than that, your best best is probably a part time or per diem associate, or working in a non-litigation firm.

avacado111
Posts: 419
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 8:49 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby avacado111 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:15 pm

so if someone goes to a t14 and lands at the end of their class in a major market (like dc)! would you consider these people to be screwed job-wise?

Action Jackson
Posts: 328
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby Action Jackson » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:33 pm

AJRESQ wrote:7. As for costs, $130k for undergraduate and law is steep. However, in the grand scheme of things, it's not that much money. It's hardly crippling debt -- the average cost of your first house will be about $230k. Law can be a real bitch at the beginning, paying only $50k a year for the first few years. However, once you're past those first few years, I would say the average salary is $75k - $120k, assuming of course, you're developed an area of practice and book of business. If you make $75k for 15 years, you've made a lot more than your initial $130k investment -- that's a lot better of a return that you would get on real estate. Who buys a house for $130k and then sells it 15 years later for over a million dollars? Not a lot of people. Your pay can vary a lot on the type of work you take on. Your practice area will dictate a lot of the $$$ you make in the next 10 years.


Your math is fucked.

First, LS debt (without UG debt) at a T14 runs between $100k-200k, and is comparable at lower ranked schools all the way down to tier 4. So you're underestimating the costs.

Second, your salary coming out of LS dictates how long you're going to be paying that debt off, and the longer it takes, the more money you lose to interest. $50k for the "first few years" means you're throwing a minimal amount of money at your interest, without ever having a chance to hit the principle.

Third, comparing a JD with real estate is nuts. Better is to compare a JD to not a JD. Without a JD you go straight into the work force. Then you have to estimate what your salary would be after 3 years of LS MINUS the loan repayments. So if you're estimating $50k (which might actually be generous ITE for people that don't get Biglaw) you can immediately take $10k off the top to go straight to the interest on your loan (assuming that $130k has been collecting interest while you were in school). Remember, this is without even touching the principle (interest only). So now after 3 years of LS you're only making $40k and you've got $130k in debt. It's not hard to imagine NOT getting a JD would be better.

The point of this isn't to dissuade people to go to LS, but this is why we keep telling people DO NOT GO TO LAW SCHOOL UNLESS YOU WANT TO BE A LAWYER. As an investment, LS is A VERY POOR investment. I'm sorry, but that's just it. If you're in it to make money you've screwing yourself. Even at a T14 school.

avacado111
Posts: 419
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 8:49 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby avacado111 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:36 pm

Action Jackson wrote:
AJRESQ wrote:7. As for costs, $130k for undergraduate and law is steep. However, in the grand scheme of things, it's not that much money. It's hardly crippling debt -- the average cost of your first house will be about $230k. Law can be a real bitch at the beginning, paying only $50k a year for the first few years. However, once you're past those first few years, I would say the average salary is $75k - $120k, assuming of course, you're developed an area of practice and book of business. If you make $75k for 15 years, you've made a lot more than your initial $130k investment -- that's a lot better of a return that you would get on real estate. Who buys a house for $130k and then sells it 15 years later for over a million dollars? Not a lot of people. Your pay can vary a lot on the type of work you take on. Your practice area will dictate a lot of the $$$ you make in the next 10 years.


Your math is fucked.

First, LS debt (without UG debt) at a T14 runs between $100k-200k, and is comparable at lower ranked schools all the way down to tier 4. So you're underestimating the costs.

Second, your salary coming out of LS dictates how long you're going to be paying that debt off, and the longer it takes, the more money you lose to interest. $50k for the "first few years" means you're throwing a minimal amount of money at your interest, without ever having a chance to hit the principle.

Third, comparing a JD with real estate is nuts. Better is to compare a JD to not a JD. Without a JD you go straight into the work force. Then you have to estimate what your salary would be after 3 years of LS MINUS the loan repayments. So if you're estimating $50k (which might actually be generous ITE for people that don't get Biglaw) you can immediately take $10k off the top to go straight to the interest on your loan (assuming that $130k has been collecting interest while you were in school). Remember, this is without even touching the principle (interest only). So now after 3 years of LS you're only making $40k and you've got $130k in debt. It's not hard to imagine NOT getting a JD would be better.

The point of this isn't to dissuade people to go to LS, but this is why we keep telling people DO NOT GO TO LAW SCHOOL UNLESS YOU WANT TO BE A LAWYER. As an investment, LS is A VERY POOR investment. I'm sorry, but that's just it. If you're in it to make money you've screwing yourself. Even at a T14 school.


wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.

Action Jackson
Posts: 328
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:46 am

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby Action Jackson » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:42 pm

avacado111 wrote:wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.


Dipshit, his math is fucked. Any of us that have looked at our loan paperwork could tell you that. Thinking of law school as an investment is almost universally stupid.

Pull your head out of your ass and get your facts straight.

mayra0509
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 4:41 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby mayra0509 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:52 pm

Action Jackson wrote:
AJRESQ wrote:7. As for costs, $130k for undergraduate and law is steep. However, in the grand scheme of things, it's not that much money. It's hardly crippling debt -- the average cost of your first house will be about $230k. Law can be a real bitch at the beginning, paying only $50k a year for the first few years. However, once you're past those first few years, I would say the average salary is $75k - $120k, assuming of course, you're developed an area of practice and book of business. If you make $75k for 15 years, you've made a lot more than your initial $130k investment -- that's a lot better of a return that you would get on real estate. Who buys a house for $130k and then sells it 15 years later for over a million dollars? Not a lot of people. Your pay can vary a lot on the type of work you take on. Your practice area will dictate a lot of the $$$ you make in the next 10 years.


Your math is fucked.

First, LS debt (without UG debt) at a T14 runs between $100k-200k, and is comparable at lower ranked schools all the way down to tier 4. So you're underestimating the costs.

Second, your salary coming out of LS dictates how long you're going to be paying that debt off, and the longer it takes, the more money you lose to interest. $50k for the "first few years" means you're throwing a minimal amount of money at your interest, without ever having a chance to hit the principle.

Third, comparing a JD with real estate is nuts. Better is to compare a JD to not a JD. Without a JD you go straight into the work force. Then you have to estimate what your salary would be after 3 years of LS MINUS the loan repayments. So if you're estimating $50k (which might actually be generous ITE for people that don't get Biglaw) you can immediately take $10k off the top to go straight to the interest on your loan (assuming that $130k has been collecting interest while you were in school). Remember, this is without even touching the principle (interest only). So now after 3 years of LS you're only making $40k and you've got $130k in debt. It's not hard to imagine NOT getting a JD would be better.

The point of this isn't to dissuade people to go to LS, but this is why we keep telling people DO NOT GO TO LAW SCHOOL UNLESS YOU WANT TO BE A LAWYER. As an investment, LS is A VERY POOR investment. I'm sorry, but that's just it. If you're in it to make money you've screwing yourself. Even at a T14 school.


I agree its a huge debt that may be difficult to pay off. However, I cant imagine attys making $500k+ even think about their student loans from LS. It may take a while to get to that point but its not impossible. I know attys who make over $1 mil. However, the field you go into is of HUGE importance.

User avatar
A'nold
Posts: 3622
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:07 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby A'nold » Sat Mar 27, 2010 7:55 pm

Action Jackson wrote:
avacado111 wrote:wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.


Dipshit, his math is fucked. Any of us that have looked at our loan paperwork could tell you that. Thinking of law school as an investment is almost universally stupid.

Pull your head out of your ass and get your facts straight.


Actually YOUR math is a grossly overgeneralized blanket statement. Law school is a great investment for somebody coming out of a typical UG with a lib. arts major or some other worthless major. People always underestimate the earnings potential of even small firm lawyers and just assume that you will be making 50k forever. You would be lucky to EVER make over 60k a year (adjusted for inflation) within 15 years or so graduating with a BA. You will typically be well over 100k in a much shorter span of time.

Spare me the "lost earnings" argument. I think I can handle not making 25k a year for 3 years.

rando
Posts: 908
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2010 1:57 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby rando » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:04 pm

mayra0509 wrote:
I agree its a huge debt that may be difficult to pay off. However, I cant imagine attys making $500k+ even think about their student loans from LS. It may take a while to get to that point but its not impossible. I know attys who make over $1 mil. However, the field you go into is of HUGE importance.


Going into LS with this kind of thinking is what gets people into enormous debt troubles. You're talking about making $1mill/yr and people are coming out of LS that can't get any job.

ViP
Posts: 419
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2009 11:53 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby ViP » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:13 pm

rando wrote:
mayra0509 wrote:
I agree its a huge debt that may be difficult to pay off. However, I cant imagine attys making $500k+ even think about their student loans from LS. It may take a while to get to that point but its not impossible. I know attys who make over $1 mil. However, the field you go into is of HUGE importance.


Going into LS with this kind of thinking is what gets people into enormous debt troubles. You're talking about making $1mill/yr and people are coming out of LS that can't get any job.


+48

avacado111
Posts: 419
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 8:49 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby avacado111 » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:15 pm

Action Jackson wrote:
avacado111 wrote:wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.


Dipshit, his math is fucked. Any of us that have looked at our loan paperwork could tell you that. Thinking of law school as an investment is almost universally stupid.
Pull your head out of your ass and get your facts straight.


:shock:

Education is an investment. Law school is part of that.

UnbornWidow
Posts: 19
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:47 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby UnbornWidow » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:19 pm

AJRESQ wrote:I know there is a lot of beef between this place and places like JD Underground. I think the truth is somewhere in the middle (law is great for some, bad for others)


JDUers never said law is bad for everyone. I think even the most angry scambloggers would say that if you get into a top 10 school, that is a rational gamble and that you should probably go.




What I'm saying is, you can be successful from a TT or TTT or TTTT based on your market.


The odds are against at least 30 percent of all law school grads unless they are willing to work side jobs in a nonlegal field for years while building their lemonade stand of a practice. I know whereof I speak.
This is why I recommend practicing in an area where you have ties, because your friends, family, and social network will become a source of referrals for you.


They will be your only source of referrals, in many situations.
YES, there are many grads who have made it solo in smaller markets. In fact, they are the only ones I know who have, save those who are black or hispanic and in an area where there is a large population of such.
But here is a very important and subtle point: these underserved, more rural areas, small or midsized cities, etc constitute a small percent of the population of america, relatively speaking, and so if all these jobless grads were to take your advice and move to these areas, this tidal wave of new lawyers would swamp the area and cause them to be even more saturated than the big cities.

It's called the 'turtles all the way down' logical fallacy.

Also, I want to add, I see where everyone who is anti-law school is coming from. In a tight market, it's easy to listen to all the law school "statistics", put a lot of $$$ into a legal education, and then find out all that's out there is document review.




As a lawyer who graduated from a TTT 2 years ago in the top 7 percent of my class, and who lives in a large metro, I would KILL to even get an interview for a doc review job. I have never even gotten a decent response for a lawyer job, even from the 100 or so resumes I sent out looking for contract work.

The most important things you need to know are this:
1) advertising does not work for legal clients, unless you have megabucks to spend.
Referrals are the only decent source for the most part.
2) there is a huge gulf between a lawyer with real training and experience and a law school grad who never has had a real law job.
3. The saturation really kicked in over the past 5 years. The advice that experienced lawyers have to give does not really apply to us.

Generally speaking if you are in a large metro area, you will have to work in some nonlegal night job or similar for a few years while your client base builds up to where you can live off of their referrals.

I am doing non-legal work now, pretty menial, low paying stuff. Could have done it right out of high school.

UnbornWidow
Posts: 19
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:47 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby UnbornWidow » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:22 pm

avacado111 wrote:
Action Jackson wrote:
avacado111 wrote:wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.


Dipshit, his math is fucked. Any of us that have looked at our loan paperwork could tell you that. Thinking of law school as an investment is almost universally stupid.
Pull your head out of your ass and get your facts straight.


:shock:

Education is an investment. Law school is part of that.


Indeed, law school is an investment, a very bad investment for most.

User avatar
crazycanuck
Posts: 3036
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2009 4:04 pm

Re: Advice on choosing a law school from a practicing lawyer

Postby crazycanuck » Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:23 pm

Action Jackson wrote:
avacado111 wrote:wtf is your problem? He is just trying to give advice. Go to JD Underground if you want to complain that badly. Besides, he says to consider the costs (you have a Reading Comp fail) before attending law school.


Dipshit, his math is fucked. Any of us that have looked at our loan paperwork could tell you that. Thinking of law school as an investment is almost universally stupid.

Pull your head out of your ass and get your facts straight.


And this is why attorneys don't come to TLS.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], MSNbot Media and 5 guests