Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

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Georgetown51
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Georgetown51 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:25 pm

pereira6 wrote:
Aberzombie1892 wrote:
Be aware that LRAP's and IBR are interesting and all of that...no one really wants to be making half of the market salary into their thirties and possibly forties (people want to save money, buy property, get married, have children, etc.).


IBR grads can't do those things with a 60k salary + ~500-600 a month payment?

Again, not buying NYC condos, but a family and a mortgage is still readily attainable, no?

Please tell me if I'm wrong!



For LRAP, IBR and lots of that stuff, it takes into account your spouses income. If you happen to marry a successful spouse, you are out of the game. Secondly, with the amount of debt people were throwing around, 150k - 200k, you are going to be making monthly payments much larger than 500-600. Thirdly, everyone is talking about pretax dollars. With a 60k salary, you are looking at closer to $35-$40k after tax. Now, can you live - sure, but you can live as a gas station attendant or grocery clerk as well and probably do just about as well financially. I am guessing that most people who go to law school and take out $200k in loans aspire for something more, something like a house, family, retirement account, savings for kids college, etc. Now you may say that you will be happy being a lawyer, but why would most people think that? Being a lawyer is rated as one of the unhappiest professions and people routinely leave law to go into other careers. I'm not saying that one shouldn't go to law school, but it is a HUGE decision if you are going to take out loans that large for education. It is a gamble and there is no way around it.

pereira6
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby pereira6 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:35 pm

Georgetown51 wrote:
pereira6 wrote:
IBR grads can't do those things with a 60k salary + ~500-600 a month payment?

Again, not buying NYC condos, but a family and a mortgage is still readily attainable, no?

Please tell me if I'm wrong!


Secondly, with the amount of debt people were throwing around, 150k - 200k, you are going to be making monthly payments much larger than 500-600.


Isn't IBR supposed to keep payments at this level?

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Aberzombie1892
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:16 pm

Moxie wrote:
Wholigan wrote:What about a T14 with several years of good work experience vs. a non-T14 with the same work experience? Isn't the T14 still in a better position? Let's say a T14 and a T2 regional grad work for the same large law firm for several years, and then both want to get out, to lateral to a boutique, more lifestyle-oriented firm, or corporate law department. All other things being equal, isn't the T14 going to have much better opportunities?


At that point they're only going to care who's work product is better.


Basically. Or personal preference. But understand that employers do not personally prefer one associate over another associate simply because of where that associate went to school. Any preference in that area would have been dealt with when the associate was hired in the first place (i.e. when that associate was hired over other associates).

AreJay711 wrote:
Aberzombie1892 wrote:Also, this thread seemed aimed at only big law. Honestly, if you don't get a COA clerkship (or a COA feeder district court judge), big law, or big gov (only counting jobs only attainable through the summer honors programs), then you really aren't in a identifiably better position than your peers that went to lower ranked schools with larger scholarships.


Yeah, but not being in an obviously better position doesn't mean you are screwed. At some level you pick a better school because if you don't get what you want, you are still about the same as you would have been at a significantly lower ranked school.


I never said they were screwed. I said that if OP believed that people outside the top 20% of most T50s were screwed, than these T14 graduates were likely screwed under that definition as well. And that, it seems, is exactly what you are saying (that they are at the same playing ground) in terms of big law. On the other hand, scholarships at lower ranked schools would compensate prospective students for their decreased big law chances. So it's not like they are giving up something and not receiving anything in return.

Also, high performers at most T50s are picked up by regional non-nlj250 firms that generally don't visit the T14. So while their salaries would be lower than a T14 graduate that received big law, they aren't exactly left high and dry.

I'm not sure "the same" is the best way to describe it. It's hard to quantify that.

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AreJay711
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:32 pm

Aberzombie1892 wrote:
Yeah, but not being in an obviously better position doesn't mean you are screwed. At some level you pick a better school because if you don't get what you want, you are still about the same as you would have been at a significantly lower ranked school.


I never said they were screwed. I said that if OP believed that people outside the top 20% of most T50s were screwed, than these T14 graduates were likely screwed under that definition as well. And that, it seems, is exactly what you are saying (that they are at the same playing ground) in terms of big law. On the other hand, scholarships at lower ranked schools would compensate prospective students for their decreased big law chances. So it's not like they are giving up something and not receiving anything in return.

Also, high performers at most T50s are picked up by regional non-nlj250 firms that generally don't visit the T14. So while their salaries would be lower than a T14 graduate that received big law, they aren't exactly left high and dry.

I'm not sure "the same" is the best way to describe it. It's hard to quantify that.[/quote]
I agree with this in terms of biglaw but not other hiring and for government work. My thinking is that in almost every conceivable situation, I am probably better off attending a t14 rather than my state school. Even if I am near the bottom of my class there is still a pretty good chance I will find some shitlaw job and manage to scrape by which isn't necessarily the case out of a state school. Scholarships can make this matter less so it seems top be a wash to me except the better chances at the top end. Obviously, this can get complicated when you consider good schools in between.

seriously????
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby seriously???? » Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:55 pm

Redsgomarchingon wrote:even if you don't make biglaw and you're 150,000 in debt, at 6.8% interest, you'd be paying around 21,000 a year for a little over 10 years. Therefore, you'd be alright making 65K/yr. Not living the dream of course, but around the national average for income and definitely not in a cardboard box. For a recently graduated history major who needs a few years of work experience before they're making decent money anyway, this isn't that bad of an outcome


whats the 65k after taxes? 40-45k? Minus 21k a year. Living off of 20-25k a year...prolly only comfortable living in a town, but those starting salaries are less than 65k. if you're cool with it, its not hopeless.

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AreJay711
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 3:59 pm

seriously???? wrote:
Redsgomarchingon wrote:even if you don't make biglaw and you're 150,000 in debt, at 6.8% interest, you'd be paying around 21,000 a year for a little over 10 years. Therefore, you'd be alright making 65K/yr. Not living the dream of course, but around the national average for income and definitely not in a cardboard box. For a recently graduated history major who needs a few years of work experience before they're making decent money anyway, this isn't that bad of an outcome


whats the 65k after taxes? 40-45k? Minus 21k a year. Living off of 20-25k a year...prolly only comfortable living in a town, but those starting salaries are less than 65k. if you're cool with it, its not hopeless.

Why would anyone repay that in 10 years making 65k a year? Why would that person not enroll in IBR? I think it is more reasonable than people think. What it boils down to is that you can't be sure that the money will be much better as a lawyer so you shouldn't go to law school unless you actually want to be a lawyer.

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Redsgomarchingon
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Redsgomarchingon » Thu Mar 24, 2011 4:13 pm

seriously???? wrote:
Redsgomarchingon wrote:even if you don't make biglaw and you're 150,000 in debt, at 6.8% interest, you'd be paying around 21,000 a year for a little over 10 years. Therefore, you'd be alright making 65K/yr. Not living the dream of course, but around the national average for income and definitely not in a cardboard box. For a recently graduated history major who needs a few years of work experience before they're making decent money anyway, this isn't that bad of an outcome


whats the 65k after taxes? 40-45k? Minus 21k a year. Living off of 20-25k a year...prolly only comfortable living in a town, but those starting salaries are less than 65k. if you're cool with it, its not hopeless.


after taxes 65K becomes about 52K (if you deduct for student loans). Still more than the average american worker, who makes between 32K-44K in 2010 (not sure if this is before or after taxes), depending on which study you look at. And yea, you can always make it a 30yr loan and pay much less monthly

Dave Davely
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Dave Davely » Thu Mar 24, 2011 6:30 pm

AreJay711 wrote:I agree with this in terms of biglaw but not other hiring and for government work. My thinking is that in almost every conceivable situation, I am probably better off attending a t14 rather than my state school. Even if I am near the bottom of my class there is still a pretty good chance I will find some shitlaw job and manage to scrape by which isn't necessarily the case out of a state school. Scholarships can make this matter less so it seems top be a wash to me except the better chances at the top end. Obviously, this can get complicated when you consider good schools in between.


Does this mean that attending a strong regional school for free (only COL debt) would be a better move than paying sticker or near sticker for a lower T-14? I think most people on this board would advise 0Ls to pick Cornell, Duke, or Georgetown at near sticker over free tuition at WUSTL or UGA. Maybe they are miscalculating...or at least not very risk adverse.

Maybe what is come down to is that those attending lower T14 schools at sticker or near sticker are gambling on making big money immediately after graduation. I get the impression that few prospective law students are "gunning" for IBR, they want the type of income that will justify their efforts to get into and succeed at a top law school.

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ThomasMN
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby ThomasMN » Thu Mar 24, 2011 6:54 pm

If ten years down the line you are still making the same salary as when you came out of law school, then you must have been a fairly unsuccessful lawyer. Between inflation and work experience you should be making quite a bit more at the ten year mark then you were at year one. Plus, if the only reason you are going into law is for a good salary, well, you may want to choose something else. If you just want a good wage then become an accountant or an engineer of any sort. Honestly, I get the impression that a lot of people end up going to top-tier law school just because they can.

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AreJay711
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Mar 24, 2011 8:37 pm

Dave Davely wrote:
AreJay711 wrote:I agree with this in terms of biglaw but not other hiring and for government work. My thinking is that in almost every conceivable situation, I am probably better off attending a t14 rather than my state school. Even if I am near the bottom of my class there is still a pretty good chance I will find some shitlaw job and manage to scrape by which isn't necessarily the case out of a state school. Scholarships can make this matter less so it seems top be a wash to me except the better chances at the top end. Obviously, this can get complicated when you consider good schools in between.


Does this mean that attending a strong regional school for free (only COL debt) would be a better move than paying sticker or near sticker for a lower T-14? I think most people on this board would advise 0Ls to pick Cornell, Duke, or Georgetown at near sticker over free tuition at WUSTL or UGA. Maybe they are miscalculating...or at least not very risk adverse.

Maybe what is come down to is that those attending lower T14 schools at sticker or near sticker are gambling on making big money immediately after graduation. I get the impression that few prospective law students are "gunning" for IBR, they want the type of income that will justify their efforts to get into and succeed at a top law school.


Well I'm going to Michigan with a small scholarship plus an outside scholarship but my goal market (right now) is D.C. so ties don't matter and local schools don't really get much of a boost. I think I would have considered a full scholarship at a regional school more if I was aiming for less competitive market. If I knew I wanted Atlanta over any other market or I could be happy living in the non-Chicago Midwest (not that WUSTL can't take someone to Chicago), I think that going to WUSTL or UGA free might be a better choice than Duke, Cornell, or Georgetown.

This is how it breaks down from what I understand but it is strictly from info I've got through TLS:

Take the money at regional -- Top 1/3rd = Profit hard (right away)| Median = make out ok |Below median = not great prospects but no loans

Go with the higher ranked school -- Top 1/3 = profit hard (over a few years)| Median = Probably profit | Top 2/3 = Probably be ok | Bottom 1/3 = IBR

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vanwinkle
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Mar 24, 2011 8:51 pm

ThomasMN wrote:If ten years down the line you are still making the same salary as when you came out of law school, then you must have been a fairly unsuccessful lawyer. Between inflation and work experience you should be making quite a bit more at the ten year mark then you were at year one.

The majority of people who go into BigLaw are making less ten years out of law school than they did their first year out. Does this make them "unsuccessful"? Yes, but that level of success is hard to attain, so there are quite a few "fairly unsuccessful" lawyers out there.

It's rare, in this economic climate, to be able to get into a decent-salary job and then get that salary to steadily increase. Layoffs, wage stagnation, and hiring/promotion freezes have hit the legal sector as hard, if not harder, than the rest of the economy. Not only that, the law often has a "once you're out, you're out" mentality. If you don't get a $160K/yr job when you graduate, it's not like you can work your way up to one of those jobs. And the public sector, which so many have regarded as some sort of backup, is starting to face layoffs and wage cuts as well. Even the DOJ is getting its budget cut this year.

There are a LOT of people in law school today who will make "unsuccessful lawyers", if you define success by substantial wage growth over 10 years.

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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby BeautifulSW » Fri Mar 25, 2011 4:28 pm

This thread is intriguing. I would like to be sure I understand what people are saying about what the value of a T14 degree really is over, say, lower T1 or T2.

I had thought for years that the T14 degree was the most important credential to get into BigLaw. I gather that this is still the case? I also thought that entering any of the elite law careers out there depends entirely on getting that first BigLaw job. In other words, BigLaw partner (which very, very few BigLaw associates will ever achieve), boutique firms, major corporation in-house counsel, senior federal agency appointments, ALL of these demand a stint in BigLaw. Is this not so?

So if you do as I did and go to a middling T2, you might save yourself an enormous debt load (which I did; my J.D. was free) but the best careers in law are thereby placed forever beyond your reach? True or not true?

These things are on my mind because of some reading I've been doing about Wall Street and who got to the highest levels in investment banking and trading. Lots of Harvard East Coast elite types but also a surprising number of hard chargers from humble-to-desperately-poor backgrounds. The LAWYERS all came from the tippy-top schools and usually also came from family wealth but the CLIENTS seem to come from just about everywhere. Hm. And just guess which group makes more money...

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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Dave Davely » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:35 pm

Bump for MOAR!

Danteshek
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Danteshek » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:37 pm

Elite = equity partner. Best way to be a partner is to start your own firm, not getting on your knees and fellating some biglaw partner for 7 years so the partner can kick you to the curb once you've outlived your useful life.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:47 pm

Danteshek wrote:Elite = equity partner. Best way to be a partner is to start your own firm, not getting on your knees and fellating some biglaw partner for 7 years so the partner can kick you to the curb once you've outlived your useful life.

Except being partner in your solo firm isn't elite.

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dr123
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby dr123 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:51 pm

News flash: not everyone at top schools, even hys, get a good paying job or even a job at all

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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Danteshek » Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:57 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:Elite = equity partner. Best way to be a partner is to start your own firm, not getting on your knees and fellating some biglaw partner for 7 years so the partner can kick you to the curb once you've outlived your useful life.

Except being partner in your solo firm isn't elite.


Depends how much money you make, bro. If you need to feed off some other rainmaker in a biglaw firm, you definitely are not elite.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:24 pm

Danteshek wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:Elite = equity partner. Best way to be a partner is to start your own firm, not getting on your knees and fellating some biglaw partner for 7 years so the partner can kick you to the curb once you've outlived your useful life.

Except being partner in your solo firm isn't elite.


Depends how much money you make, bro. If you need to feed off some other rainmaker in a biglaw firm, you definitely are not elite.

There are almost no solo's who make as much as an equity partner at a v100 firm

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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Danteshek » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:26 pm

I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

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Patriot1208
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:38 pm

Danteshek wrote:I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

I'd rather have a porsche

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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Danteshek » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:40 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

I'd rather have a porsche


Have fun being a bitch. You are probably well suited for it

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dr123
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby dr123 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:42 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

I'd rather have a porsche


you can get a porsche with a 150k salary

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Patriot1208
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:42 pm

Danteshek wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

I'd rather have a porsche


Have fun being a bitch. You are probably well suited for it

Wait are u mad, bro?

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Patriot1208
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Patriot1208 » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:44 pm

dr123 wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:
Danteshek wrote:I'd rather make 150k and have my freedom, than 400k and be somebody's bitch. Even partners in biglaw firms are somebody's bitch. I suppose the firm CEO or managing partner is the exception. But even he is accountable to the other partners, which makes him a bitch.

I'd rather have a porsche


you can get a porsche with a 150k salary

100k car with 150k salary? Man have fun in bankruptcy with spending like that

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Holly Golightly
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Re: Are Some T14 Graduates Getting Buried by LS Debt?

Postby Holly Golightly » Fri Mar 25, 2011 9:45 pm

Dave Davely wrote:Maybe what is come down to is that those attending lower T14 schools at sticker or near sticker are gambling on making big money immediately after graduation. I get the impression that few prospective law students are "gunning" for IBR, they want the type of income that will justify their efforts to get into and succeed at a top law school.

Gunning for BIGFEDGOV. Sup?




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