Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
didntgo89072014
Posts: 44
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:01 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby didntgo89072014 » Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:53 pm

OP, random TLS posters don't understand the nature of the economic consulting industry. You have a very hard ceiling on how far you can rise with just a Bachelor's degree, and basically have to go to graduate school after 4-5 years. That said, a JD is definitely the worst option out of JD, MBA and PhD. You should really talk to other people at your firm; I imagine they will steer you towards an MBA too. With spousal income, a 750+ GMAT and a good track record at your firm, you could leave HBS/Wharton/Kellogg etc. with ~50k or less in debt, and gun for MBB consulting or a nice gig at Amazon or Google paying a salary similar to Biglaw.

Also, do you think the top law schools have similar 5-year out median salaries to the top business schools? I would guess not.

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505125_162-31042421/what-mba-grads-earn-five-years-out-even-during-the-recession/

User avatar
zazoo
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2012 7:14 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby zazoo » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:27 am

Thanks for all the feedback. To those interested in my logic for applying to law school, I'll try to summarize briefly:

1) I accept the fact that financially, I may never "make up" for the COA and opportunity costs associated with law school. As long as I'll be able to afford a decent life (eventually), I'm OK with this decision "costing" me. Perhaps not every person going to law school should assume they can get out from debt, but with my savings, WE, and ability to return to my current career, I like to think I've hedged my bet. I work in litigation with attorneys for corporate clients every day. No matter how awesome I become at my job, I will always be only a tool that attorneys use when advising/defending the client. I wouldn't mind working in the same space I'm in now but on the legal side where the real strategic decisions are being made. If I don't make it there, well, at least I tried. If I hate it, well, at least I tried. In both scenarios, I can (very likely) come back to my current job.

2) I work in an industry where, by 30, 35, I will have reached the peak of my career advancement. At that point, I will have a BA and highly specialized WE that isn't very transferable. I will likely live longer than 30, 35 and would like to have the prospect for advancement as well as other types of work opportunities. I understand that there are "better" (i.e., cheaper, less risky) graduate school alternatives than law school. As many have pointed out, business school and PhDs are options that many of my peers have taken. I have considered all of them and am confident law school is the best for my personality, temperament, etc. I'll spare you all from this analysis.

My parting thought is that there are MANY risks associated with law school and TLS does a great job of pointing them out. I like to think of it as a gauntlet that forces prospective students to really consider their decision and its risks (God knows I do every time I'm on here). If you survive the terror, then perhaps you're making the right decision for yourself. That said, there are MANY intrinsic benefits to law school (especially once one takes finances out of the equation) that don't get as much attention around these parts.

timbs4339
Posts: 2733
Joined: Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:19 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby timbs4339 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:44 am

zazoo wrote:Thanks for all the feedback. To those interested in my logic for applying to law school, I'll try to summarize briefly:

1) I accept the fact that financially, I may never "make up" for the COA and opportunity costs associated with law school. As long as I'll be able to afford a decent life (eventually), I'm OK with this decision "costing" me. Perhaps not every person going to law school should assume they can get out from debt, but with my savings, WE, and ability to return to my current career, I like to think I've hedged my bet. I work in litigation with attorneys for corporate clients every day. No matter how awesome I become at my job, I will always be only a tool that attorneys use when advising/defending the client. I wouldn't mind working in the same space I'm in now but on the legal side where the real strategic decisions are being made. If I don't make it there, well, at least I tried. If I hate it, well, at least I tried. In both scenarios, I can (very likely) come back to my current job.

2) I work in an industry where, by 30, 35, I will have reached the peak of my career advancement. At that point, I will have a BA and highly specialized WE that isn't very transferable. I will likely live longer than 30, 35 and would like to have the prospect for advancement as well as other types of work opportunities. I understand that there are "better" (i.e., cheaper, less risky) graduate school alternatives than law school. As many have pointed out, business school and PhDs are options that many of my peers have taken. I have considered all of them and am confident law school is the best for my personality, temperament, etc. I'll spare you all from this analysis.

My parting thought is that there are MANY risks associated with law school and TLS does a great job of pointing them out. I like to think of it as a gauntlet that forces prospective students to really consider their decision and its risks (God knows I do every time I'm on here). If you survive the terror, then perhaps you're making the right decision for yourself. That said, there are MANY intrinsic benefits to law school (especially once one takes finances out of the equation) that don't get as much attention around these parts.


FWIW my reflexive response is usually against attending and even I think the rhetoric ITT has been overblown. If you go to a school like NYU, even if you were K-JD have a pretty good shot of landing biglaw even if you fall below the median. With your work experience you have an even greater chance. Once grades are out of a certain "auto callback" range GPA distinctions matter less and less, and work experience becomes more relevant. It may not work out from a robotic cost/benefit standpoint but you're not going to be living under a bridge in three years.

If you were going to Cardozo or Loyola it would be a much different story, however.

onionz
Posts: 407
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 11:22 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby onionz » Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:00 am

You obviously have done your homework so if you want to go for it, do it. A comfortable living isn't enough even if some people are so incredibly debt adverse or only care about being comfortable. It's the same difference that separates the type of people who go from Microsoft to some start up.Most start ups fail, but they still think it's worth it.


The idea that "I would never leave a 100k job for law school" is pretty short sighted, and incredibly non ambitious. You're only considering good schools, so you'll be fine. I'm giving up 90k a year plus equity at the startup I work at, and I'm comfortable with that- I was a super splitter though so holding out for more money was unreasonable..if you can get money and are in no rush that is obviously preferable.

User avatar
hohenheim
Posts: 180
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:30 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby hohenheim » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:10 pm

zazoo wrote:2) I work in an industry where, by 30, 35, I will have reached the peak of my career advancement. At that point, I will have a BA and highly specialized WE that isn't very transferable. I will likely live longer than 30, 35 and would like to have the prospect for advancement as well as other types of work opportunities. I understand that there are "better" (i.e., cheaper, less risky) graduate school alternatives than law school. As many have pointed out, business school and PhDs are options that many of my peers have taken. I have considered all of them and am confident law school is the best for my personality, temperament, etc. I'll spare you all from this analysis.


+1 to all of this. It's hard for people who haven't been in the industry to understand just how upwardly limited you are .

User avatar
romothesavior
Posts: 14772
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:29 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby romothesavior » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:28 pm

Well, it sounds like you've thought it through and your reasons are fairly solid. I still don't think I would do something like this, but that's just me. In response to the other poster above, I don't think it's "non-ambitious" to avoid law school when you make six-figures and have a six-figure nest egg saved up; it's financially prudent and pretty reasonable. But I guess if a person really wants to practice law and is okay with possibly losing money to do so, then that's their decision.

The original purpose for this thread was to get opinions on whether sticker at a T10 was reasonable in your situation. I think it probably is. You won't be drowning in debt, your debtload will be manageable, and unless you just get terrible grades, I think a person with your background will do well at OCI. So if you've thought this through, then I think you'll be at least comfortable financially.

Just two things to think about, not to totally dissuade you, but just to think about: 1) If you're looking for an escape from that "pawn"-like feeling, the "tool" feeling you talked about, then law probably won't be it. You will still be answering to the client, and to your superiors, and that's a feeling that bothers a lot of attorneys. You answer to clients now (attorneys), and you'll answer to clients as a lawyer (GCs and the like). And 2) I get the thing about the lack of upward mobility, and a JD may help you if you go back to your other job (I can't speak to that), but there are a lot of legal jobs that you will hit a wall in. You may make 160k for a few years and go back to 100k or less after you wash out of biglaw. Very few people make partner in biglaw, and even at smaller shops its not an easy thing to do. You certainly will have a wider range of income opportunities if you go to law school than if you stay where you are, but it's no guarantee that you're going to make much more than you do now.

You definitely sound like you've thought this through. Again, this isn't something I would want to do personally, but I can at least understand your reasons for it and I don't think it's going to destroy you financially or anything. Your situation is a little unique, so I guess go for it if its what you want and you think it will benefit you long-term.

User avatar
sinfiery
Posts: 3308
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:55 am

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby sinfiery » Fri Mar 15, 2013 3:01 pm

Legit reasons. I'd do the same if I were in your position but wouldn't risk telling a stranger that advice. Weird.

NYstate
Posts: 1566
Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:44 am

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby NYstate » Sat Mar 16, 2013 7:56 am

zazoo wrote:Thanks for all the feedback. To those interested in my logic for applying to law school, I'll try to summarize briefly:

1) I accept the fact that financially, I may never "make up" for the COA and opportunity costs associated with law school. As long as I'll be able to afford a decent life (eventually), I'm OK with this decision "costing" me. Perhaps not every person going to law school should assume they can get out from debt, but with my savings, WE, and ability to return to my current career, I like to think I've hedged my bet. I work in litigation with attorneys for corporate clients every day. No matter how awesome I become at my job, I will always be only a tool that attorneys use when advising/defending the client. I wouldn't mind working in the same space I'm in now but on the legal side where the real strategic decisions are being made. If I don't make it there, well, at least I tried. If I hate it, well, at least I tried. In both scenarios, I can (very likely) come back to my current job.

2) I work in an industry where, by 30, 35, I will have reached the peak of my career advancement. At that point, I will have a BA and highly specialized WE that isn't very transferable. I will likely live longer than 30, 35 and would like to have the prospect for advancement as well as other types of work opportunities. I understand that there are "better" (i.e., cheaper, less risky) graduate school alternatives than law school. As many have pointed out, business school and PhDs are options that many of my peers have taken. I have considered all of them and am confident law school is the best for my personality, temperament, etc. I'll spare you all from this analysis.

My parting thought is that there are MANY risks associated with law school and TLS does a great job of pointing them out. I like to think of it as a gauntlet that forces prospective students to really consider their decision and its risks (God knows I do every time I'm on here). If you survive the terror, then perhaps you're making the right decision for yourself. That said, there are MANY intrinsic benefits to law school (especially once one takes finances out of the equation) that don't get as much attention around these parts.


Holy fuck. The only benefit to law school is that you can be a lawyer. There are no intrinsic benefits to law school that you can't get in some other way. Maybe you consider supposed status from law as a benefit? But that would only be because you get to be a lawyer if you go to law school. Don't kid yourself about this.

Don't minimize the different lifestyle you will face in biglaw
. Read the threads on this that are on the forum now. Your life will not be the same.

There is never a reason to take finances out of the equation
. I suppose of you are a trust fund kid or independently wealthy at such an extreme level you never need to work, maybe finances don't matter. Hell I had no debt from law school and I know that money matters. For everyone else it does matter.
You have never explained why you want law other than you need some kind of grad degree to get ahead. You have expressed no interest in practicing law. You don't know what it will be like to transfer from a job relying on your quantitative analysis to a completely different area where you may or may not do well. No one in biglaw is going to care much for your ability to crunch numbers. I know no one in my corporate department that does this; maybe some people in tax or the T&E, but no ones job revolves around quantitative analysis. That is why they hire consultants like you.

Are you sure your current job will take you back in 3 years with a JD?
Some companies feel that once people have law degrees they will not be happy unless they are practicing law. They view JDs as a flight risk.

I think you are making a mistake.
But you are going to do what you want. So all I can do is wish you well.

User avatar
Sheffield
Posts: 411
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:07 am

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby Sheffield » Sat Apr 06, 2013 6:34 pm

No to sticker!

So... for a T-10 what is the sensible maximum exit debt. Is $75K reasonable? Perhaps $100K tops? As far as COL, I have to live somewhere, so I have factored that out. Loss of income for 3 years —hard to calculate since I have friends with BAs and Masters making only slightly more (annually) than my 10 week SA income — calling it a near wash (noting another $4K in RA income).

Projected Hypothetical: Entering day one at the law firm with a $120K-130K income and around $75K/$100K in debt. Knowing that we live on some shaky level of ITE, is this the kind of deal you would accept (begrudgingly or otherwise); runaway from; or flip a coin?

User avatar
Micdiddy
Posts: 2189
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:38 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby Micdiddy » Sat Apr 06, 2013 6:39 pm

Sheffield wrote:No to sticker!

So... for a T-10 what is the sensible maximum exit debt. Is $75K reasonable? Perhaps $100K tops? As far as COL, I have to live somewhere, so I have factored that out. Loss of income for 3 years —hard to calculate since I have friends with BAs and Masters making only slightly more (annually) than my 10 week SA income — calling it a near wash (noting another $4K in RA income).

Projected Hypothetical: Entering day one at the law firm with a $120K-130K income and around $75K/$100K in debt. Knowing that we live on some shaky level of ITE, is this the kind of deal you would accept (begrudgingly or otherwise); runaway from; or flip a coin?


If I was going to law school KNOWING 100% I would get a 120k-130k job and have 100k in debt right after graduation, I would be pretty ecstatic about that.

User avatar
jbagelboy
Posts: 9635
Joined: Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:57 pm

Re: Thoughts on paying "sticker" @ T10

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Apr 07, 2013 12:52 am

resilience99 wrote:
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.



I'm a litigation consultant at a firm in CA. I got my job during consulting interview rounds senior year of college when the employers came to campus. So the best thing to do would be to go to the career services department at your undergrad (if you are still in undergrad) and ask. then again, this might only be realistic out of relatively prestigious undergrads.

The next way to get into litigation consulting is to work in a particular industry that involves a lot of risk factors/heavy litigation, like medicine, construction, ect. make contacts in that industry and then apply to a consulting firm that's had you as a client and stress your industry knowledge. this is admittedly a lot more difficult.

the last way would be to get a JD -- these are the % on job lists that say "Business" rather than "Law Firm" or "Gov't".

OP, don't worry, I get it. I like my job enough, but only temporarily. We are on the outside looking in. I'm essentially a well versed forensic accountant, and without an mba or JD there's a solid salary ceiling in lit consulting.. I talk to the attorneys every week, but I'm not at their level without their degree. And I'm going next year to get it. I feel for you if you are doing the same.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider], SweetTort and 2 guests