Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

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zazoo
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Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby zazoo » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:32 am

Would be curious about y'alls thoughts on my situation:

I've been working for 4 years in litigation consulting and have saved ~$100K to finance my law education. I currently make ~$100K a year and assume I could come back to this job after graduation. I am set on going to law school in NYC or the Bay Area (NYU or Boalt) so that my partner can get a job (and hopefully offset some COA).

Assuming I get no scholly money, am I right to think of my savings as a functional scholarship making the decision to pay "sticker" a low risk proposition even for the average TLSer (especially if I can count on my current job as a back-up plan). The plan is BigLaw, btw.

TheZoid
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby TheZoid » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:44 am

I wouldn't say count it as a functional scholarship, but it's certainly less risky since your loan payments and overall debt load are lower if you miss the big law boat. Especially if your wife can pay for cost of living, I think you can justify sticker at a T10 in your situation.

vinnnyvincenzo
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby vinnnyvincenzo » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:46 am

Seems like a poor investment for you. You're gonna drop $250k for law school, not to mention the ~$300k you would have gotten if you had kept working for a coin flip chance that you get big law.

mdrunner165
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby mdrunner165 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:49 am

What's the point of forgoing 3 years of $100,000 income to attend a school at sticker where your prospects of a job are uncertain.

Stick with job unless you get a full ride. <--- this even may be risky....

TheZoid
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby TheZoid » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:52 am

Eh, I think the above responses are fair enough from a purely financial/economic standpoint, but how much do you enjoy your job/how badly do you want to be a lawyer?

whereskyle
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby whereskyle » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:55 am

TheZoid wrote:Eh, I think the above responses are fair enough from a purely financial/economic standpoint, but how much do you enjoy your job/how badly do you want to be a lawyer?


Yeah, that sounds like a pretty good job.

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zazoo
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby zazoo » Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:04 am

Thanks for the replies. I'll be the first to admit attending law school is not necessarily a pragmatic financial decision; but I assume that either way, I'll be able to afford a decent life for me and my future family in the long run (perhaps not everyone assumes this). A law degree will afford me lifetime opportunities that staying at my current job without a PhD will not. There are other grad school options (I've considered many) and I think law is the best fit for me.

On a side note, there is a lot of focus on these boards on the down sides of law school but rarely any discussion on the intrinsic benefits. I know huge debt can "ruin" a life and many lawyers are unhappy; important things to consider. However, three years of learning in a new city, meeting many new friends and "contacts", and having a graduate degree that opens many doors are also important. While I get that financial realities are critical, if you can live with the worst case scenario, why not choose what gives you the best lifetime opportunities for success and, for some people, a more interesting life.

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francesfarmer
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby francesfarmer » Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:07 am

zazoo wrote:Would be curious about y'alls thoughts on my situation:

I've been working for 4 years in litigation consulting and have saved ~$100K to finance my law education. I currently make ~$100K a year and assume I could come back to this job after graduation. I am set on going to law school in NYC or the Bay Area (NYU or Boalt) so that my partner can get a job (and hopefully offset some COA).

Assuming I get no scholly money, am I right to think of my savings as a functional scholarship making the decision to pay "sticker" a low risk proposition even for the average TLSer (especially if I can count on my current job as a back-up plan). The plan is BigLaw, btw.

You should get money from the T-14 so if you are more flexible, your COA could be less than $100,000, depending on what industry your partner works in.

I think leaving a $100k a year job is pretty foolish though, unless you absolutely hate it. I guess law school would open doors in your particular industry, but other than that, its not a "diverse" degree like people claim it is.

eleemosynary2
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby eleemosynary2 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:06 pm

TheZoid wrote:I wouldn't say count it as a functional scholarship, but it's certainly less risky since your loan payments and overall debt load are lower if you miss the big law boat. Especially if your wife can pay for cost of living, I think you can justify sticker at a T10 in your situation.

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BruceWayne
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby BruceWayne » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:20 pm

The only situations worth leaving a 100K job to attend law school in this economy are...

1. You have been admitted to HYS with need based grants of at least 80K
2. You have been admitted to another top 14 with a full ride plus living stipend and you have money saved and are really passionate about being a lawyer.
3. You have a full ride+ stipend to whatever law school but someone who you can trust and who has the power has guaranteed you a full time paid/salaried legal position where you want to work.

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homestyle28
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby homestyle28 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:25 pm

What everyone here is going to overlook is the fact that with your background you've got a better than coin-flip chance at biglaw if you get NYU or Boalt. You'll come into LS with a background that most people lack so you'll probably pick it up faster and you'll have a great resume for OCI...nothing's guaranteed but your situation makes it less risky than most...I assume you have a strong professional network in Biglaw, so probably landing a 1L SA is a realistic goal, further offsetting the debt.

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BruceWayne
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby BruceWayne » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:26 pm

homestyle28 wrote:What everyone here is going to overlook is the fact that with your background you've got a better than coin-flip chance at biglaw if you get NYU or Boalt. You'll come into LS with a background that most people lack so you'll probably pick it up faster and you'll have a great resume for OCI...nothing's guaranteed but your situation makes it less risky than most...I assume you have a strong professional network in Biglaw, so probably landing a 1L SA is a realistic goal, further offsetting the debt.


If he lands below median they really won't give a damn about his background.

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homestyle28
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby homestyle28 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:37 pm

BruceWayne wrote:
homestyle28 wrote:What everyone here is going to overlook is the fact that with your background you've got a better than coin-flip chance at biglaw if you get NYU or Boalt. You'll come into LS with a background that most people lack so you'll probably pick it up faster and you'll have a great resume for OCI...nothing's guaranteed but your situation makes it less risky than most...I assume you have a strong professional network in Biglaw, so probably landing a 1L SA is a realistic goal, further offsetting the debt.


If he lands below median they really won't give a damn about his background.


Do you ever get tired of being wrong about everything?

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zazoo
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby zazoo » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:15 pm

If I'm below median, I guess I'll take my ball and go home. At least I tried...

whereskyle
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby whereskyle » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:34 pm

homestyle28 wrote:
BruceWayne wrote:
homestyle28 wrote:What everyone here is going to overlook is the fact that with your background you've got a better than coin-flip chance at biglaw if you get NYU or Boalt. You'll come into LS with a background that most people lack so you'll probably pick it up faster and you'll have a great resume for OCI...nothing's guaranteed but your situation makes it less risky than most...I assume you have a strong professional network in Biglaw, so probably landing a 1L SA is a realistic goal, further offsetting the debt.


If he lands below median they really won't give a damn about his background.


Do you ever get tired of being wrong about everything?


I'm sorta with Mr. Wayne on this one. I mean, when your most recent activity is getting below median grades as a full time student, it seems like that might put a damper on things.

Redfactor
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby Redfactor » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:36 pm

zazoo wrote:Would be curious about y'alls thoughts on my situation:

I've been working for 4 years in litigation consulting and have saved ~$100K to finance my law education. I currently make ~$100K a year and assume I could come back to this job after graduation. I am set on going to law school in NYC or the Bay Area (NYU or Boalt) so that my partner can get a job (and hopefully offset some COA).

Assuming I get no scholly money, am I right to think of my savings as a functional scholarship making the decision to pay "sticker" a low risk proposition even for the average TLSer (especially if I can count on my current job as a back-up plan). The plan is BigLaw, btw.


Don't listen to what some others on this thread are saying. They probably have no idea what it takes to save up 100k. And while they might not agree with how you choose to spend that money, you've done a great and impressive job to save that amount of money to shift your career in some capacity. You wouldn't have done it if you were passionate about your current trajectory.

I have much more confidence in someone like you, who has shown an ability to save rather than live at the top of or above their means, to pay off loans in a timely and comfortable manner than most all the people on these boards.

As long as you understand that spending the money on law school could extend your time renting a home rather than owning and that your partner is comfortable with taking on this much debt, I say you two are more than capable to figure this decision out on your own.

BTW apparently Columbia also has a decent law school in NYC. Who knew?

whereskyle
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby whereskyle » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:39 pm

Redfactor wrote:
zazoo wrote:Would be curious about y'alls thoughts on my situation:

I've been working for 4 years in litigation consulting and have saved ~$100K to finance my law education. I currently make ~$100K a year and assume I could come back to this job after graduation. I am set on going to law school in NYC or the Bay Area (NYU or Boalt) so that my partner can get a job (and hopefully offset some COA).

Assuming I get no scholly money, am I right to think of my savings as a functional scholarship making the decision to pay "sticker" a low risk proposition even for the average TLSer (especially if I can count on my current job as a back-up plan). The plan is BigLaw, btw.


Don't listen to what some others on this thread are saying. They probably have no idea what it takes to save up 100k. And while they might not agree with how you choose to spend that money, you've done a great and impressive job to save that amount of money to shift your career in some capacity. You wouldn't have done it if you were passionate about your current trajectory.

I have much more confidence in someone like you, who has shown an ability to save rather than live at the top of or above their means, to pay off loans in a timely and comfortable manner than most all the people on these boards.

As long as you understand that spending the money on law school could extend your time renting a home rather than owning and that your partner is comfortable with taking on this much debt, I say you two are more than capable to figure this decision out on your own.

BTW apparently Columbia also has a decent law school in NYC. Who knew?


I agree with this guy's sentiments in regards to your ability to save. However, I think you should exercise caution in detailing for yourself exactly what it is that you will be gaining from your legal education in concrete terms. As I said earlier, doing legal consulting making $100,000.00/year sounds like a good job.

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sinfiery
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby sinfiery » Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:42 pm

IF you land biglaw, the 4-5 years of work vs 7-8 at your current job will probably still leave you financially at a loss.


Past biglaw, no one on this board can really give you any good advice about what to expect, financially. We can look at historical data, but times have a changed, sir.


Don't go to law school for the money.

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cwid1391
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby cwid1391 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:31 pm

Also, how does one get into litigation consulting? I'm pretty sure I'd drop law school and do that for a few years instead.

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North
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby North » Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:52 pm

cwid1391 wrote:Also, how does one get into litigation consulting? I'm pretty sure I'd drop law school and do that for a few years instead.

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romothesavior
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby romothesavior » Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:55 pm

I'm with those who wonder if this is worth it. Like sinefry mentioned, this could be financially foolish even with a few years in big law. Do you hate your current job? Why do you want to be a lawyer so bad? I imagine you'll get a biglaw job and all that, but... why? Then what? It doesn't make much sense to me, so I think you need to really assess why you want to do this so badly, and make sure you understand what it takes to be a lawyer.

That said, 100k off + your wife working means a T10 at sticker isn't bad at all. Its just that I can think of a whole lot better ways to spend that 100k and three years, given that you have a comfortable job already.

timbs4339
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby timbs4339 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:03 pm

BruceWayne wrote:
homestyle28 wrote:What everyone here is going to overlook is the fact that with your background you've got a better than coin-flip chance at biglaw if you get NYU or Boalt. You'll come into LS with a background that most people lack so you'll probably pick it up faster and you'll have a great resume for OCI...nothing's guaranteed but your situation makes it less risky than most...I assume you have a strong professional network in Biglaw, so probably landing a 1L SA is a realistic goal, further offsetting the debt.


If he lands below median they really won't give a damn about his background.


This is dumb. Of course they will- they lump everyone who isn't below top 1/3 into the same category. He could probably be higher than bottom 20% (assuming NYU) and still get a huge bump.

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BerkeleyBear
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby BerkeleyBear » Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:07 pm

zazoo wrote:Would be curious about y'alls thoughts on my situation:

I've been working for 4 years in litigation consulting and have saved ~$100K to finance my law education. I currently make ~$100K a year and assume I could come back to this job after graduation. I am set on going to law school in NYC or the Bay Area (NYU or Boalt) so that my partner can get a job (and hopefully offset some COA).

Assuming I get no scholly money, am I right to think of my savings as a functional scholarship making the decision to pay "sticker" a low risk proposition even for the average TLSer (especially if I can count on my current job as a back-up plan). The plan is BigLaw, btw.


Don't think of your savings as a functional scholorship! You worked hard for that $$$. Either keep the well paying job or try to get a large scholorship.

With a 3.9, 171 you could get a large scholly somewhere in the T14. I personally wouldn't limit myself to NYU and Cal for my SO. The job market sucks in the bay area and the COL in both NY and SF is insane.
Last edited by BerkeleyBear on Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Gunnar Stahl
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby Gunnar Stahl » Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:09 pm

zazoo wrote:Thanks for the replies. I'll be the first to admit attending law school is not necessarily a pragmatic financial decision; but I assume that either way, I'll be able to afford a decent life for me and my future family in the long run (perhaps not everyone assumes this). A law degree will afford me lifetime opportunities that staying at my current job without a PhD will not. There are other grad school options (I've considered many) and I think law is the best fit for me.

On a side note, there is a lot of focus on these boards on the down sides of law school but rarely any discussion on the intrinsic benefits. I know huge debt can "ruin" a life and many lawyers are unhappy; important things to consider. However, three years of learning in a new city, meeting many new friends and "contacts", and having a graduate degree that opens many doors are also important. While I get that financial realities are critical, if you can live with the worst case scenario, why not choose what gives you the best lifetime opportunities for success and, for some people, a more interesting life.

Get a PhD then.

resilience99
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Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby resilience99 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 5:10 pm

cwid1391 wrote:Also, how does one get into litigation consulting? I'm pretty sure I'd drop law school and do that for a few years instead.




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