Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

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Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby proetcontra » Fri Jan 03, 2014 8:51 am

Hi, I graduated from a continental law school (undergrad, GPA 3.9/4, LSAT 152) last summer and I am qualified to practice law in my home country.
There are some law schools in the US where I can complete JD in 2 years, but they all are TTT (Hawaii, Brooklyn, Washburn, etc). I have been lurking for over a year, and thanks to you all I am aware that these schools are not good.
However, would be a good plan to complete 2-year JD from TTT and then get LLM Tax at, for instance, NYU? I would need Big law because of visa/greencard issues.

There is a 2-year JD at Northwestern, but they told me that 5 years PQE is preferable, and I don't want to wait (economy at home getting really bad).
On another hand, there is LLM-JD transfer option for foreign lawyers. For example, at Cornell, Virginia, Vanderbilt, St. Louis. Would this path be better than 2year-JD+LLM(Tax)?

Thank you for your time.

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Re: Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Sat Jan 04, 2014 12:21 pm

You want to go to a TTT, so that you're only in school for 2 years, but then you plan to spend another year in school to get an LLM? If you've been lurking here so long, you should already know that is a ridiculous idea.

If you're going to be in school for 3 years, a JD from a decent school would be infinitely superior to a TTT JD + LLM. Banking on the idea of getting in to NYU's LLM program after a TTT JD is similarly ridiculous. Sure, some people do it, but some people also win the lottery.

If you're going to come to this country, you shouldn't even consider it unless you can get into a t14 school. You've probably already seen people here telling posters not to bother with schools outside the t14, but that's especially true for you, because you face disadvantages they don't.

For example:
1. You don't have ties to any region of the US. That will make it more difficult for you to get jobs outside of NY (and maybe the region you go to law school in).
2. Your employer will have to sponsor you for a work visa. Sure, big law will do this, but they prefer not to. Other employers will be less willing.
3. Various career options will be completely unavailable to you because you're not a US citizen. In particular, you won't be able to clerk or work for the federal government.
4. If you're from a non-English speaking country, employers will have doubts about your English language abilities. Obviously, complete fluency is very important for the practice of the law.

That said, if you could get into a t14 school and find some way to pay for it, it might be worth the risk.

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Re: Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby guano » Sat Jan 04, 2014 12:39 pm

proetcontra wrote:(economy at home getting really bad)

legal market in US is also really bad

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Re: Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby 20141023 » Sat Jan 04, 2014 6:21 pm

Last edited by 20141023 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:35 pm

Yeah, I don't think LLM admissions are nearly as stringent as JD admissions. For most places, the LLM program is just a cash cow, so there's little incentive to limit admissions.

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Re: Options for a foreign-educated lawyer

Postby proetcontra » Sun Jan 05, 2014 5:29 am

Thank you all for your responses. Retake, as I thought, is the best.

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