Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

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star fox

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby star fox » Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:37 pm

tbf, once you get past 1L and realize it's all just an extended vacation law school is pretty chill

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trebekismyhero

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby trebekismyhero » Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:38 pm

star fox wrote:That's too much debt for Northwestern. If you're fine with the idea of not doing BigLaw but still doing law, then I think Illinois is fine. Illinois still gives around a 1/4 shot at a big Chicago firm, but you obviously gotta have contingencies in place like doing small firm work or local government.


Pretty much this. If you are going to go to law school this year, definitely go to Illinois. $300k in debt would scare me to death

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby Redfactor » Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:17 pm

UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby Redfactor » Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:20 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.


Sure. Except for the part about it mostly being 0Ls. And except for the part about it being terrible advice. But the rest of your post is totally on point. Except for the majority of it being a nonsensical rant about something completely unrelated to the OP's stated "goals".


Which law school did you graduate from? What's your area of practice? Are you even in law school now, because you write as though you're an 0L

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby cavalier1138 » Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:37 pm

Redfactor wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.


Sure. Except for the part about it mostly being 0Ls. And except for the part about it being terrible advice. But the rest of your post is totally on point. Except for the majority of it being a nonsensical rant about something completely unrelated to the OP's stated "goals".


Which law school did you graduate from? What's your area of practice? Are you even in law school now, because you write as though you're an 0L


In school now. You also have similar responses from practicing attorneys.

By the way, in response to your points above: the OP won't be making $100k three years out of law school at a small firm, and they sure as hell won't be making it in PI. And sure, a handful of plaintiff's attorneys make money hand-over-fist. And other plaintiff's attorneys bankrupt themselves pursuing cases on contingency. It's hardly a steady living for most people. The only way to get steady, six-figure income from a small operation is to work at a small firm for enough time to break into the $100k range or to work for a boutique litigation firm, which is usually harder to get than biglaw.

Anyway, this is all moot, since the OP's generic statements of "I wanna be a lawyer," aren't really helping anyone get a good picture of what they want to do, and your idiotic sidebars aren't helping.

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UVA2B

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby UVA2B » Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:50 pm

Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.


You're being unnecessarily aggressive with your distaste for people saying things different from what you believe, so I hope that's fun. I didn't say it was impossible to be making $100k three years out of law school. What I said was that the most likely outcome out of Illinois is a small firm where it's unlikely to ever make that amount. And while I appreciate your anecdotes of friends that are killing it for $70-85k working 50-55 hour weeks, there just isn't reliable data on how likely that outcome is that I've ever seen, and to advise someone wanting it to gamble on the $45k/year ballooning into $100k that soon, or possibly ever, is in my opinion irresponsible. As a lowly 1L who hasn't practiced law yet, you're right that I have no personal experience in seeing friends or colleagues in better situations that far removed from graduation. I will obviously concede that it's possible, but what do you actually have to point to in the way of hard data to show how likely the outcome is? Because relying on anecdotes to prove your point proves just this side of nothing to me. Maybe your friends are the lucky ones, or maybe that's normal, but nothing about the legal profession that I've ever seen in speaking with practicing attorneys suggests it's common for law firms with 2-25 attorneys ballooning to that level of pay. Maybe it does, and I'm absolutely willing to listen to your proof of that, should you have it.

Remember that last sentence where I said Illinois on a full ride is a great outcome if they are comfortable with a small law firm where pay is likely to be a lot less with no guarantee of salary improving that heavily/quickly? Is that my ignorance too, or was it my other reasoned analysis of their situation that was so objectionable to you?

As to helping people, did you ignore where I said lawyers for sure help people in the ways the OP mentioned, but just alluded to those ways of helping more often than not being for much less pay? So again, it's irresponsible to not set expectations appropriately in my opinion.

Finally, while it is useful to demonstrate you have actual experience in the legal field, and your opinion of the practice of law deserves more weight than someone like myself who is just a law student trying to help others in making this decision, but you wield this, "you all just sound like a bunch of 0Ls" like a petulant child. Sound advice is not the sole property of law school graduates.

Sorry for continuing to be such an ignorant prole.

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby guynourmin » Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:09 pm

UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.


You're being unnecessarily aggressive with your distaste for people saying things different from what you believe, so I hope that's fun. I didn't say it was impossible to be making $100k three years out of law school. What I said was that the most likely outcome out of Illinois is a small firm where it's unlikely to ever make that amount. And while I appreciate your anecdotes of friends that are killing it for $70-85k working 50-55 hour weeks, there just isn't reliable data on how likely that outcome is that I've ever seen, and to advise someone wanting it to gamble on the $45k/year ballooning into $100k that soon, or possibly ever, is in my opinion irresponsible. As a lowly 1L who hasn't practiced law yet, you're right that I have no personal experience in seeing friends or colleagues in better situations that far removed from graduation. I will obviously concede that it's possible, but what do you actually have to point to in the way of hard data to show how likely the outcome is? Because relying on anecdotes to prove your point proves just this side of nothing to me. Maybe your friends are the lucky ones, or maybe that's normal, but nothing about the legal profession that I've ever seen in speaking with practicing attorneys suggests it's common for law firms with 2-25 attorneys ballooning to that level of pay. Maybe it does, and I'm absolutely willing to listen to your proof of that, should you have it.

Remember that last sentence where I said Illinois on a full ride is a great outcome if they are comfortable with a small law firm where pay is likely to be a lot less with no guarantee of salary improving that heavily/quickly? Is that my ignorance too, or was it my other reasoned analysis of their situation that was so objectionable to you?

As to helping people, did you ignore where I said lawyers for sure help people in the ways the OP mentioned, but just alluded to those ways of helping more often than not being for much less pay? So again, it's irresponsible to not set expectations appropriately in my opinion.

Finally, while it is useful to demonstrate you have actual experience in the legal field, and your opinion of the practice of law deserves more weight than someone like myself who is just a law student trying to help others in making this decision, but you wield this, "you all just sound like a bunch of 0Ls" like a petulant child. Sound advice is not the sole property of law school graduates.

Sorry for continuing to be such an ignorant prole.


If legal salaries were anything like redfactor is saying, I would have taken a strong regional full last year instead of retaking/reapplying, and I would have NO hesitations about going to law school. I would encourage most people on this board to go, too. Love some proof of that! Won't hold my breath, though.

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby Redfactor » Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:06 pm

UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.


You're being unnecessarily aggressive with your distaste for people saying things different from what you believe, so I hope that's fun. I didn't say it was impossible to be making $100k three years out of law school. What I said was that the most likely outcome out of Illinois is a small firm where it's unlikely to ever make that amount. And while I appreciate your anecdotes of friends that are killing it for $70-85k working 50-55 hour weeks, there just isn't reliable data on how likely that outcome is that I've ever seen, and to advise someone wanting it to gamble on the $45k/year ballooning into $100k that soon, or possibly ever, is in my opinion irresponsible. As a lowly 1L who hasn't practiced law yet, you're right that I have no personal experience in seeing friends or colleagues in better situations that far removed from graduation. I will obviously concede that it's possible, but what do you actually have to point to in the way of hard data to show how likely the outcome is? Because relying on anecdotes to prove your point proves just this side of nothing to me. Maybe your friends are the lucky ones, or maybe that's normal, but nothing about the legal profession that I've ever seen in speaking with practicing attorneys suggests it's common for law firms with 2-25 attorneys ballooning to that level of pay. Maybe it does, and I'm absolutely willing to listen to your proof of that, should you have it.

Remember that last sentence where I said Illinois on a full ride is a great outcome if they are comfortable with a small law firm where pay is likely to be a lot less with no guarantee of salary improving that heavily/quickly? Is that my ignorance too, or was it my other reasoned analysis of their situation that was so objectionable to you?

As to helping people, did you ignore where I said lawyers for sure help people in the ways the OP mentioned, but just alluded to those ways of helping more often than not being for much less pay? So again, it's irresponsible to not set expectations appropriately in my opinion.

Finally, while it is useful to demonstrate you have actual experience in the legal field, and your opinion of the practice of law deserves more weight than someone like myself who is just a law student trying to help others in making this decision, but you wield this, "you all just sound like a bunch of 0Ls" like a petulant child. Sound advice is not the sole property of law school graduates.

Sorry for continuing to be such an ignorant prole.


tl;dr

Sorry for the tone; it was stronger than needed.

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby Redfactor » Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:12 pm

guybourdin wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.


You're being unnecessarily aggressive with your distaste for people saying things different from what you believe, so I hope that's fun. I didn't say it was impossible to be making $100k three years out of law school. What I said was that the most likely outcome out of Illinois is a small firm where it's unlikely to ever make that amount. And while I appreciate your anecdotes of friends that are killing it for $70-85k working 50-55 hour weeks, there just isn't reliable data on how likely that outcome is that I've ever seen, and to advise someone wanting it to gamble on the $45k/year ballooning into $100k that soon, or possibly ever, is in my opinion irresponsible. As a lowly 1L who hasn't practiced law yet, you're right that I have no personal experience in seeing friends or colleagues in better situations that far removed from graduation. I will obviously concede that it's possible, but what do you actually have to point to in the way of hard data to show how likely the outcome is? Because relying on anecdotes to prove your point proves just this side of nothing to me. Maybe your friends are the lucky ones, or maybe that's normal, but nothing about the legal profession that I've ever seen in speaking with practicing attorneys suggests it's common for law firms with 2-25 attorneys ballooning to that level of pay. Maybe it does, and I'm absolutely willing to listen to your proof of that, should you have it.

Remember that last sentence where I said Illinois on a full ride is a great outcome if they are comfortable with a small law firm where pay is likely to be a lot less with no guarantee of salary improving that heavily/quickly? Is that my ignorance too, or was it my other reasoned analysis of their situation that was so objectionable to you?

As to helping people, did you ignore where I said lawyers for sure help people in the ways the OP mentioned, but just alluded to those ways of helping more often than not being for much less pay? So again, it's irresponsible to not set expectations appropriately in my opinion.

Finally, while it is useful to demonstrate you have actual experience in the legal field, and your opinion of the practice of law deserves more weight than someone like myself who is just a law student trying to help others in making this decision, but you wield this, "you all just sound like a bunch of 0Ls" like a petulant child. Sound advice is not the sole property of law school graduates.

Sorry for continuing to be such an ignorant prole.


If legal salaries were anything like redfactor is saying, I would have taken a strong regional full last year instead of retaking/reapplying, and I would have NO hesitations about going to law school. I would encourage most people on this board to go, too. Love some proof of that! Won't hold my breath, though.



It all depends on goals. If you're not set on Biglaw or some unicorn job, the market's strongest regional for free is rarely, if ever, a bad choice (and usually provides a so-so shot at biglaw anyhow).

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UVA2B

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby UVA2B » Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:40 pm

Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
Redfactor wrote:There is a ton of terrible advice in this thread, and it's mostly by 0L's who have no idea what they're taking about.

OP is open to a lot of various legal positions. Not once did OP imply that s/he wasn't interested in doing legal work. All the things that OP is open to are obtainable from Illinois, and news flash, it's what the majority of attorneys in the US do.

The idea that lawyers don't help people is ridiculous. OP can do wills/trusts/estate planning, small business legal work, immigration law, civil plaintiff or defense work, employment law, or criminal -- or a host of other areas and work with/for people, not some corporate entity.

I get trying to help people think about their future, but wanting to do private practice but not biglaw-or-bust does not suggest someone hasn't thought things out.

OP, a free ride at Illinois sounds like a great option for your aspirations if you're looking to practice in the region.


Ok, quite a bit to unpack here. They said they wanted to be highly paid shortly after graduation. Do you know what that means? A big firm. Small firm lawyers can make good money, but only after building a book of business, which requires a unique brand of entrepreneurial ability outside of being a capable lawyer and plenty of time.

Lawyers help people for sure, but doing the type of work you're talking about (outside elite estate planning and trusts that happens at big firms) will not be highly paid. If that's the primary goal, then it won't work out well.

A free ride at Illinois is a great option with a realistic outcome in mind. It's possible to get highly paid work out of Illinois, but it's not likely. What is most likely is the low-paid work mentioned above. That's not horrible because debt would be minimal, but don't pretend like solely wanting to be well-paid and going to Illinois for law school is well thought out.


You're just further exposing your ignorance.

OP stated ideally 100k within three years of law school. That does not require biglaw. Hell, that's roughly half of what a first year makes after bonuses. Additionally, OP stated that s/he wanted to live comfortably and help people. Please point me in the direction of OP's post that s/he's "solely wanting to be well-paid."

100k is far from some unicorn salary for an attorney at a smaller shop with three years experience. Yes, hiring is bimodal but once an attorney gets a few years under their belt and actually learns how to practice, their value and salary usually go up.

Salaries are not going to be biglaw, but its still private practice and are generally on the upper end of the lower mode (70-85k). I have a lot of friends that went this route and they seem to enjoy their 50-55 hour weeks for decent money. They will get raises....

As for highly paid, it can be done in small shops. Are you going to create generational wealth outside of a plaintiff's firm? Unlikely. But if you're a halfway decent attorney, there is plenty of money to be made out there.


You're being unnecessarily aggressive with your distaste for people saying things different from what you believe, so I hope that's fun. I didn't say it was impossible to be making $100k three years out of law school. What I said was that the most likely outcome out of Illinois is a small firm where it's unlikely to ever make that amount. And while I appreciate your anecdotes of friends that are killing it for $70-85k working 50-55 hour weeks, there just isn't reliable data on how likely that outcome is that I've ever seen, and to advise someone wanting it to gamble on the $45k/year ballooning into $100k that soon, or possibly ever, is in my opinion irresponsible. As a lowly 1L who hasn't practiced law yet, you're right that I have no personal experience in seeing friends or colleagues in better situations that far removed from graduation. I will obviously concede that it's possible, but what do you actually have to point to in the way of hard data to show how likely the outcome is? Because relying on anecdotes to prove your point proves just this side of nothing to me. Maybe your friends are the lucky ones, or maybe that's normal, but nothing about the legal profession that I've ever seen in speaking with practicing attorneys suggests it's common for law firms with 2-25 attorneys ballooning to that level of pay. Maybe it does, and I'm absolutely willing to listen to your proof of that, should you have it.

Remember that last sentence where I said Illinois on a full ride is a great outcome if they are comfortable with a small law firm where pay is likely to be a lot less with no guarantee of salary improving that heavily/quickly? Is that my ignorance too, or was it my other reasoned analysis of their situation that was so objectionable to you?

As to helping people, did you ignore where I said lawyers for sure help people in the ways the OP mentioned, but just alluded to those ways of helping more often than not being for much less pay? So again, it's irresponsible to not set expectations appropriately in my opinion.

Finally, while it is useful to demonstrate you have actual experience in the legal field, and your opinion of the practice of law deserves more weight than someone like myself who is just a law student trying to help others in making this decision, but you wield this, "you all just sound like a bunch of 0Ls" like a petulant child. Sound advice is not the sole property of law school graduates.

Sorry for continuing to be such an ignorant prole.


tl;dr

Sorry for the tone; it was stronger than needed.


Wow, your level of condescending, reductionist tone to try to cement being right is astounding. My tone didn't change. I sent the same message throughout, you balked at my message because you went sensationalist proclaiming everyone to be ignorant 0Ls with no knowledge of the legal career from a small firm. That was patently unfair, and I called you on it, while providing you an opportunity to cement your point with something more than your friends and how awesome their small firm jobs are.

If you have any reason for people to actually believe the tripe you're pushing, I welcome it. But what you've done to this point is provide a condescending dismissal of those of us who want to rely on actual hiring data and legal salaries to make decisions in law schools.

Feel free to stop being a condescending ass at any time, respond to the substantive points I've made on multiple occasions in this thread, and back that up with something more than "you're all a bunch of know-nothing 0Ls." Seriously, as a practicing attorney (presumably), providing insight into post-graduation outcomes outside Biglaw can be incredibly valuable, but your input to this point has been essentially useless confirmation bias that your friends' outcomes worked out, so obviously that means because it's possible, people should rely on it.

Please give me better persuasive arguments as to why the median Illinois graduate can expect to end up doing the type of work the OP wants while making that $100k salary three years after graduation.

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Johann

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Re: Northwestern Sticker vs Illinois $$$

Postby Johann » Tue Apr 11, 2017 12:17 am

Another practicing attorney reference point -

Northwestern will get you your salary goals but you have to be content with a 20 year debt payment under PAYE. I'm doing that and it's fine (see more posts in the loan thread) but I understand for what it is - a 10% tax on my income for 20 years and the overall debt doesn't scare me or affect my day to day. If you aren't risk averse and want salary, I'd do that.

If you aren't scared of networking and. Wing entrepreneurial (opening own firm), debt free from Illinois will put you alright too. Most small law firm lawyers probably aren't making quite 100k after 3 years (midlaw would be 100-150 at that point), but if you get a skill and open your own place you'll be alright once you ramp up to a full client load if you can. I've known people that fail as solos, but the successful ones usually make about 200-300k in the city by their 3rd year (5-10 years out of law school). Happy to answer other questions by pm as I've got lots of friends in the Chicago market.



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