Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

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eggy
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Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:19 pm

Well, this is my first post on these forums, so I apologize if the nature of my question is on the noob-ish side, but bear with me.

I was an East Asian Studies major in university, and I specialized in Japanese. I have studied and lived in Japan for a total of 3 years as well and I speak fluent Japanese as a result.

I had initially given up my dreams of law school because I was afraid becoming a lawyer would reduce my possibilities of finding a career in Japan, but it turns out I was mistaken. There are lots of American firms in Japan, as well as possibilities for North Americans with law degrees. So, I have decided to take the plunge.

My question is this - does anyone know of some accredited law schools that have close ties with schools or North American law firms in Japan? Ideally I want to be able to do my internship at a firm in Japan, so I want to make sure I go to a school that has a lot to offer in that respect. I know that Temple Law School in Tokyo is the only Law School in Japan where you can graduate and receive a US Bar certification, so that is one big possibility.

If anyone here has any information or advice for someone like myself, who dreams about becoming a successful lawyer in Japan, it would be greatly appreciated.

As for my overall academic standing... I had a 3.6 GPA and I expect to get something around a 165 on my LSAT. I also have a reference letter from a Harvard Law professor, if that means anything :P

Thanks in advance!!!!

-Aaron

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PoorOrpheus
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby PoorOrpheus » Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:26 pm

The first school that comes to mind is CLS:
http://www.law.columbia.edu/center_program/japanese

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manbearwig
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby manbearwig » Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:26 pm

I'm a 1L at Temple (which basically means I know little to nothing) and one of my friends here plans on doing the Japanese study abroad program. It was one of the big reasons why she chose the school. I really don't know much about the program, but you should email the people in the study abroad/international departments. I'm sure they'd give you lots of info. Also, with your numbers, you've a good chance of getting some nice scholarship money as well.

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2ofspades
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby 2ofspades » Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:20 pm



I highly recommend trying to get your LSAT up 4+ points.

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johnnyutah
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby johnnyutah » Fri Sep 03, 2010 8:09 pm

manbearwig wrote:I'm a 1L at Temple (which basically means I know little to nothing) and one of my friends here plans on doing the Japanese study abroad program. It was one of the big reasons why she chose the school. I really don't know much about the program, but you should email the people in the study abroad/international departments. I'm sure they'd give you lots of info. Also, with your numbers, you've a good chance of getting some nice scholarship money as well.

PhilEEEEE

eggy
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:07 pm

Thanks for the advice everyone. If anyone else has info on other schools that are affiliated with firms in Japan please let me know!!!

Getting my LSAT up another 4 points is gonna be really tough I think... but I have the next 4 months to study, so I guess anything's possible.

dtubin
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby dtubin » Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:28 am

SFOT represent - gatoradevenom ;)


Good to see you on here Eggy. I saw your post on SF about going into law. Hope all is well and good luck. There is a vast amount of information on this forum.

edit: 4 points on your LSAT would be quite beneficial; 4 months is a lot of time to prep as well. Are you working right now? Not only that, if you would score 3-4 points higher I would think you got some serious cash coming your way and a better shot at some other schools. Going to a T50 (even T14), I think you would have a good shot at going back to Japan, which essentially seems like your goal : )

Just buckle down and go from there. It's all on you now.

oppotomus
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby oppotomus » Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:38 am

. . .
Last edited by oppotomus on Thu Apr 25, 2013 11:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

eggy
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Sun Sep 05, 2010 9:32 am

dtubin wrote:SFOT represent - gatoradevenom ;)


Good to see you on here Eggy. I saw your post on SF about going into law. Hope all is well and good luck. There is a vast amount of information on this forum.

edit: 4 points on your LSAT would be quite beneficial; 4 months is a lot of time to prep as well. Are you working right now? Not only that, if you would score 3-4 points higher I would think you got some serious cash coming your way and a better shot at some other schools. Going to a T50 (even T14), I think you would have a good shot at going back to Japan, which essentially seems like your goal : )

Just buckle down and go from there. It's all on you now.


Hahahaha

SFOT has such a strong presence, I love it.

Thanks for the tips bud.

I'm going to be taking a course from Oct. so hopefully that will be just what the doctor ordered in terms of getting my score up as high as possible. I do work part time, but that's only about 3 times a week, so it's not too bad.

When are you going to write your LSATs b?


Oppotomos and others: Just to be clear, I don't necessarily want to study "Japanese Law", I just want to go to a school that offers internships/has connections with American Law firms in Japan.

I appreciate the recommendations though, and will look into them next week.

dtubin
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby dtubin » Sun Sep 05, 2010 10:00 am

eggy wrote:
Hahahaha

SFOT has such a strong presence, I love it.

Thanks for the tips bud.

I'm going to be taking a course from Oct. so hopefully that will be just what the doctor ordered in terms of getting my score up as high as possible. I do work part time, but that's only about 3 times a week, so it's not too bad.

When are you going to write your LSATs b?


Funny stuff. We just need some lawyers in OT, haha. I wouldn't bank on the course to get you up to a 170. I would however, buy the powerscore books. Those will def help. Are you taking the LSAT in Dec? I would also buy a book on informal logic as well. I started to read it and it's quite...well..interesting..

Not sure about the last question if it's directed at me...but I'm taking my LSAT next June. Jan-June for prep.

Good luck, see you around.

eggy
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Sun Sep 05, 2010 5:59 pm

I have the powerscore books and they're really good :)

Good luck to you bud.

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nealric
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby nealric » Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:55 pm

There are lots of American firms in Japan, as well as possibilities for North Americans with law degrees. So, I have decided to take the plunge.


Just FYI: American firms are only going to hire a tiny handful of brand new US graduates to work in Japanese offices. I'm talking few enough to count with your fingers. It would be a very bad idea to go to law school (especially a non-elite one) with that as your singular goal.

I can't speak for non-US firms or corporate-type positions, but I strongly suspect they are going to be mostly looking for people who are already experienced US lawyers.

Bottom line: be prepared to practice in the US starting out.

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chadwick218
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby chadwick218 » Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:01 pm

Penn offers a dual program with Waseda (I believe that you spend your third year in Tokyo).

solidsnake
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby solidsnake » Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:06 pm

You need two years post-qualification US experience to get licensed in japan as a foreign atty. The best firm in tokyo, imo, is MOFO. Get your lsat up 7 points. go to ccn. grade into top 1/3d 1L yr. Nail your eip and callbacks and bam! you're in.

Pip
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby Pip » Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:50 am

nealric wrote:
There are lots of American firms in Japan, as well as possibilities for North Americans with law degrees. So, I have decided to take the plunge.


Just FYI: American firms are only going to hire a tiny handful of brand new US graduates to work in Japanese offices. I'm talking few enough to count with your fingers. It would be a very bad idea to go to law school (especially a non-elite one) with that as your singular goal.

I can't speak for non-US firms or corporate-type positions, but I strongly suspect they are going to be mostly looking for people who are already experienced US lawyers.

Bottom line: be prepared to practice in the US starting out.


Ding ding ding... you nailed that one... You will also find that the few firms that do hire someone for one of their foreign offices right out of school also favor hiring people from that country. The only two classmates I remember getting jobs in foreign offices was a woman from Spain and a guy from France... and they were hired to work in their home countries.

mr.undroppable
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby mr.undroppable » Wed Sep 08, 2010 10:26 am

Pip wrote:Ding ding ding... you nailed that one... You will also find that the few firms that do hire someone for one of their foreign offices right out of school also favor hiring people from that country. The only two classmates I remember getting jobs in foreign offices was a woman from Spain and a guy from France... and they were hired to work in their home countries.



Things to consider:

1) Firms like to hire locals because they have a reasonable justification for not giving them an expat package and they know that there will be no language/cultural issues. If you go straight to Asia out of law school and ever have to lateral you might find yourself cut out of an expat package as well since you're not really bringing anything to the table that a native lawyer with an LLM and a year of experience in the US isn't. They will label you as a local hire even though you're not Japanese if you don't have any US experience. Expat packages can be ridiculously large depending on the firm, so this is something to consider.

2) Going to Asia straight away can severely limit your training opportunities and lead to you becoming one dimensional/unemployable - that is to say you will be amazing at doing a 3rd year's job, but not much more, and the firm won't be able to justify billing you out as a 7th year (this is when they fire you). Also, if you ever have to go back to the US you might either have to negotiate a pay cut or reduce your class standing (so from fifth year associate back to second year).

3) Asia, and especially Japan, is a tiny market. Openings are few and far between now that the economy has cooled off since 2007 and if you look at firm websites you'll see that very few offices have lawyers from outside of the T14 and the lawyers that are from schools like UW were at the very top of their class. Basically it's a huge gamble, if all you want to do is work in Japan then surely there are safer ways to do it than law school. That said if you get your LSAT up into the 170s, schools like Harvard, Columbia, Penn and Michigan routinely send 1Ls and 2Ls to Japan if you have the language ability and can get decent grades. Also, if you do your homework, some firms in Japan will let you start out over there and still give you good training, you just have to be careful and not start the process off without knowing what you're getting into.

MrAnon
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby MrAnon » Wed Sep 08, 2010 1:19 pm

You need to go to an absolutely top ranked school like Harvard or Columbia. Anything lower than 10 is going to hurt you. Then you have to do better than 70% of your classmates. There are many easier paths to working in Japan than taking 3 years to go to law school. Whatever you do, do not go to Temple thinking that it will be your "in".

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manbearwig
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby manbearwig » Wed Sep 08, 2010 3:20 pm

MrAnon wrote:You need to go to an absolutely top ranked school like Harvard or Columbia. Anything lower than 10 is going to hurt you. Then you have to do better than 70% of your classmates. There are many easier paths to working in Japan than taking 3 years to go to law school. Whatever you do, do not go to Temple thinking that it will be your "in".


Definitely agree with this. Do not go to Temple expecting to get your dream Japan job. In fact, it most likely will not happen unless you go to a top top school. However, if you cannot get your LSAT up, and you have to choose a lower school, Temple has a decent program for being T2 plus you could get money.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby worldtraveler » Wed Sep 08, 2010 7:09 pm

If you really just want to live and work in Japan, this probably isn't the greatest plan.

eggy
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Fri Sep 10, 2010 8:34 am

nealric wrote:
Just FYI: American firms are only going to hire a tiny handful of brand new US graduates to work in Japanese offices. I'm talking few enough to count with your fingers. It would be a very bad idea to go to law school (especially a non-elite one) with that as your singular goal.

I can't speak for non-US firms or corporate-type positions, but I strongly suspect they are going to be mostly looking for people who are already experienced US lawyers.

Bottom line: be prepared to practice in the US starting out.


I am speaking purely from my own personal experience, but I have a friend that went to George Washington University, did an internship at a Japanese firm in Tokyo, and was offered a job at the end of his internship. This guy's Japanese level is not as good as mine by a long shot, nor does he have experience working in Japan. If I am correct George Washington does not fall into the top 10 either.

I do know that it's not 100%, but is everyone making these assumptions based on non-Japanese speaking lawyers. I feel like my background would give me a significant leg up.

I am prepared to practice in the US first either way, and I do appreciate the warning.

chadwick218"
Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:01 pm

Penn offers a dual program with Waseda (I believe that you spend your third year in Tokyo).

[/quote]

Thanks! I will look into that as well.

[quote="solidsnake wrote:
Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:06 pm

You need two years post-qualification US experience to get licensed in japan as a foreign atty. The best firm in tokyo, imo, is MOFO. Get your lsat up 7 points. go to ccn. grade into top 1/3d 1L yr. Nail your eip and callbacks and bam! you're in.



Please translate all those acronyms for me!! hahaha

Pip wrote: Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 8:50 am


Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:30 pm
Posts: 137
nealric wrote:
Quote:
There are lots of American firms in Japan, as well as possibilities for North Americans with law degrees. So, I have decided to take the plunge.


Just FYI: American firms are only going to hire a tiny handful of brand new US graduates to work in Japanese offices. I'm talking few enough to count with your fingers. It would be a very bad idea to go to law school (especially a non-elite one) with that as your singular goal.

I can't speak for non-US firms or corporate-type positions, but I strongly suspect they are going to be mostly looking for people who are already experienced US lawyers.

Bottom line: be prepared to practice in the US starting out.


Ding ding ding... you nailed that one... You will also find that the few firms that do hire someone for one of their foreign offices right out of school also favor hiring people from that country. The only two classmates I remember getting jobs in foreign offices was a woman from Spain and a guy from France... and they were hired to work in their home countries.



Interesting....

mr.undroppable wrote: Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:26 am

Pip wrote:
Ding ding ding... you nailed that one... You will also find that the few firms that do hire someone for one of their foreign offices right out of school also favor hiring people from that country. The only two classmates I remember getting jobs in foreign offices was a woman from Spain and a guy from France... and they were hired to work in their home countries.



Things to consider:

1) Firms like to hire locals because they have a reasonable justification for not giving them an expat package and they know that there will be no language/cultural issues. If you go straight to Asia out of law school and ever have to lateral you might find yourself cut out of an expat package as well since you're not really bringing anything to the table that a native lawyer with an LLM and a year of experience in the US isn't. They will label you as a local hire even though you're not Japanese if you don't have any US experience. Expat packages can be ridiculously large depending on the firm, so this is something to consider.

2) Going to Asia straight away can severely limit your training opportunities and lead to you becoming one dimensional/unemployable - that is to say you will be amazing at doing a 3rd year's job, but not much more, and the firm won't be able to justify billing you out as a 7th year (this is when they fire you). Also, if you ever have to go back to the US you might either have to negotiate a pay cut or reduce your class standing (so from fifth year associate back to second year).

3) Asia, and especially Japan, is a tiny market. Openings are few and far between now that the economy has cooled off since 2007 and if you look at firm websites you'll see that very few offices have lawyers from outside of the T14 and the lawyers that are from schools like UW were at the very top of their class. Basically it's a huge gamble, if all you want to do is work in Japan then surely there are safer ways to do it than law school. That said if you get your LSAT up into the 170s, schools like Harvard, Columbia, Penn and Michigan routinely send 1Ls and 2Ls to Japan if you have the language ability and can get decent grades. Also, if you do your homework, some firms in Japan will let you start out over there and still give you good training, you just have to be careful and not start the process off without knowing what you're getting into.



Wow, great information here. Thanks very much.

I will take all those points into consideration. It is looking more and more like I should stay and practice for 2 years first... I can always take vacations to Japan :)

Also, do you advise against programs like the one offered by Temple University that allows you to do your 3 years of law school at their Tokyo Campus?

Believe me, if there was another way that was a sure bet to make a lot of money and live in Japan I would do it, but at 26 I need to make sure I have a stable career. I've worked at a Japanese company and barely survived off the pay. Japan's one of those places where if you know the right people you can make it big, but I wasn't able to get a break :( Plus, I like Kyoto, and there's very little money to be made there.


MrAnon wrote: Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:19 pm

You need to go to an absolutely top ranked school like Harvard or Columbia. Anything lower than 10 is going to hurt you. Then you have to do better than 70% of your classmates. There are many easier paths to working in Japan than taking 3 years to go to law school. Whatever you do, do not go to Temple thinking that it will be your "in".



We are referring to Temple in Tokyo correct? If I do go it will be to that location.

I want to get into Harvard.... but the LSATs own me... I'm gonna do my best to get my score up.

manbearwig wrote: Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 2:20 pm

MrAnon wrote:
You need to go to an absolutely top ranked school like Harvard or Columbia. Anything lower than 10 is going to hurt you. Then you have to do better than 70% of your classmates. There are many easier paths to working in Japan than taking 3 years to go to law school. Whatever you do, do not go to Temple thinking that it will be your "in".


Definitely agree with this. Do not go to Temple expecting to get your dream Japan job. In fact, it most likely will not happen unless you go to a top top school. However, if you cannot get your LSAT up, and you have to choose a lower school, Temple has a decent program for being T2 plus you could get money.



Again I'm assuming we're not talking about their law school in Tokyo?

worldtraveler wrote:
Post subject: Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.Posted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:09 pm

If you really just want to live and work in Japan, this probably isn't the greatest plan.



Read a couple of posts up. I have worked too hard to settle for a 30-40k a year job in Japan. If a really good opportunity comes up that pays extremely well, I'm gone, especially if it's in Kyoto :) I have a deep spiritual connection to that place that I cannot explain. It sucks...

shastaca
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Re:

Postby shastaca » Fri Sep 10, 2010 8:46 am

. .
Last edited by shastaca on Fri Jan 28, 2011 4:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby worldtraveler » Fri Sep 10, 2010 5:26 pm

Why ask for advice if you're just going to tell everybody they're wrong?

eggy
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby eggy » Fri Sep 10, 2010 7:27 pm

I'm not telling people they're wrong. In fact, I wish you were right. If you can tell me how I can find a job in Japan that can provide me with a 2-300,000 dollar a year income that I can achieve within the next 10 years I would love to hear it.

I'm simply stating that it is more difficult than you may think, because I have first-hand experience in the matter. I don't, however, have experience being a lawyer in Japan.

MrAnon
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby MrAnon » Fri Sep 10, 2010 7:47 pm

Wow. Well, you go to Japan tomorrow and apply for jobs. If you are an excellent employee you will rise to the ranks of someone who earns 200K. If you cannot earn it this way then you will not earn it simply by manner of having a law degree from a T1 school. It sounds like the Japanese corporate world is not interested in you right now, and the likelihood that they will be interested in you with a law degree is roughly the same. That is how it works in law. Folks who had no chance of getting high paying jobs out of college don't end up with high paying jobs out of law school. The folks who do end up with those high paying types of jobs are the smarter and more dynamic students who had options out of college and went to the very top law schools. Otherwise it is the more dynamic kids from lower schools, who also could have eventually found success in other work if they tried.

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: Law schools with strong Japanese relations.

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Sat Sep 11, 2010 3:44 pm

MrAnon wrote:Wow. Well, you go to Japan tomorrow and apply for jobs. If you are an excellent employee you will rise to the ranks of someone who earns 200K. If you cannot earn it this way then you will not earn it simply by manner of having a law degree from a T1 school. It sounds like the Japanese corporate world is not interested in you right now, and the likelihood that they will be interested in you with a law degree is roughly the same. That is how it works in law. Folks who had no chance of getting high paying jobs out of college don't end up with high paying jobs out of law school. The folks who do end up with those high paying types of jobs are the smarter and more dynamic students who had options out of college and went to the very top law schools. Otherwise it is the more dynamic kids from lower schools, who also could have eventually found success in other work if they tried.


LOL. LOL. LOL.

Because my music degree from shitty state university would have put me in the running for a high-paying gig.

:roll:




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