Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Nov 02, 2009 12:18 pm

In all seriousness, like everything else.. There are schlockey, low-end practicioners oozzzing out of the walls of the lower trial courts, begging for 5,000 dollar nuisance settlements on soft-tissue, rear-end, garbage cases (this is a much larger segment of the legal profession than you might want to admit at the 0L statge as this is where a good portion of the newly minted lawyers are headed each year), and there are the real hard-core, top-end practicioners that really know what they are doing. The top end of the personal injury firms in a single year can earn more than the best biglaw partner can in several years. Many of these attorneys will earn double and tripple what a biglaw partner will earn in just one year and some can earn more in a signle settlement than many biglaw partners will earn all year.

Trouble is, these firms are few and far between and do not often higher new blood. The attorneys from these firms are also, usually, some of the finest trial lawyers you will ever encounter. You don't just hang a shingle and watch the bucks roll in..

vvoc
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:57 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby vvoc » Tue Nov 03, 2009 4:02 am

so whats the best route to getting hired at one of these firms? any advice to becoming a successful PI lawyer for a 0L? thanks

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Nov 03, 2009 12:04 pm

vvoc wrote:so whats the best route to getting hired at one of these firms? any advice to becoming a successful PI lawyer for a 0L? thanks


Typically, the best way to get into a plaintiff's shop is to clerk for them during law school and hope to hell they hire you afterward. Starting salary is usually in the range of 35k to 50k. Believe it or not, competition for these jobs is pretty intense. Down the line, your starting salary may not increase, but you may either: a) start to get a cut of the fees earned; b) eventually become a partner and share in the profits directly; or c) may decide to strike out on your own, should you feel you have the ability to bring in enough work to sustain yourself.

Try to attend the lowest cost law school option you can and make sure that school is in the region you intend to practice. Personal Injury firms care much less about which school you attend.

Personal injury attorneys can earn anywhere from 35k per year at the very low end to tens of millions per year at the very high end... Getting to the high end is probably far more difficult than making partner at Skadden.

User avatar
Bustang
Posts: 439
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 4:26 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Bustang » Tue Nov 03, 2009 12:59 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
vvoc wrote:so whats the best route to getting hired at one of these firms? any advice to becoming a successful PI lawyer for a 0L? thanks


Typically, the best way to get into a plaintiff's shop is to clerk for them during law school and hope to hell they hire you afterward. Starting salary is usually in the range of 35k to 50k. Believe it or not, competition for these jobs is pretty intense. Down the line, your starting salary may not increase, but you may either: a) start to get a cut of the fees earned; b) eventually become a partner and share in the profits directly; or c) may decide to strike out on your own, should you feel you have the ability to bring in enough work to sustain yourself.

Try to attend the lowest cost law school option you can and make sure that school is in the region you intend to practice. Personal Injury firms care much less about which school you attend.

Personal injury attorneys can earn anywhere from 35k per year at the very low end to tens of millions per year at the very high end... Getting to the high end is probably far more difficult than making partner at Skadden.


I think this is good advice. PI is much like any other business out there: Some winners and a whole lot of losers(read: lower income). The salary data is probably so spread out that finding a median would be nearly impossible (albeit, possible if you really wanted to prove something). It's risky, but there have been quite a few very very influential/successful PI attorneys (Lanier etc) in our day. While the first thing that comes to mind is ambulance chaser, many of these people represent folk who have been deprived of their livelihood due to their work or an unfortunate circumstance. They need representation just as much as the yuppy who calls one of the big firms because of a business deal going poorly.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:14 pm

Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap.... These cases actually get tried and appealed in many instances... Where does everyone think that all the decisional law comes from.. Moreover, when I defend a 5 mill products claims, guess what; there is a personal injury lawyer on the other side bringing the claim. We go to the same court, talk to the same judge and try the case in much the same manner. And some of em, are really fucking good at what they do.

Without plaintiff's lawyers, many biglaw litigators would be out of work.

keg411
Posts: 5935
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:10 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby keg411 » Tue Nov 03, 2009 2:34 pm

reasonable_man wrote:Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap.... These cases actually get tried and appealed in many instances... Where does everyone think that all the decisional law comes from.. Moreover, when I defend a 5 mill products claims, guess what; there is a personal injury lawyer on the other side bringing the claim. We go to the same court, talk to the same judge and try the case in much the same manner. And some of em, are really fucking good at what they do.

Without plaintiff's lawyers, many biglaw litigators would be out of work.


Plus, all of the insurance defense guys would be out of work too ;).

vvoc
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:57 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby vvoc » Tue Nov 03, 2009 4:37 pm

im glad everyone isnt so negative about being a pi lawyer on this thread...good to hear that PI doesnt force you to become sleezy.

User avatar
nealric
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby nealric » Tue Nov 03, 2009 7:51 pm

Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap....


It has a lot to do with the guys on TV trolling for $5k MIST claims.

If all PI was multi-million dollar products liability cases, it wouldn't get a bad rap.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Nov 03, 2009 8:24 pm

nealric wrote:
Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap....


It has a lot to do with the guys on TV trolling for $5k MIST claims.

If all PI was multi-million dollar products liability cases, it wouldn't get a bad rap.


So an 850K construction accident has no value?

User avatar
nealric
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby nealric » Tue Nov 03, 2009 8:31 pm


So an 850K construction accident has no value?


I would say it's worth about $280,500 (minus overhead) :wink:

Scurredsitless1
Posts: 284
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 12:47 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Scurredsitless1 » Tue Nov 03, 2009 8:38 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
nealric wrote:
Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap....


It has a lot to do with the guys on TV trolling for $5k MIST claims.

If all PI was multi-million dollar products liability cases, it wouldn't get a bad rap.


So an 850K construction accident has no value?



For every $1 mill case, there's 1000 valued under $10k....

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Nov 03, 2009 8:45 pm

Scurredsitless1 wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
nealric wrote:
Its funny that PI gets such a bad wrap....


It has a lot to do with the guys on TV trolling for $5k MIST claims.

If all PI was multi-million dollar products liability cases, it wouldn't get a bad rap.


So an 850K construction accident has no value?



For every $1 mill case, there's 1000 valued under $10k....


Probably more.

Scurredsitless1
Posts: 284
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 12:47 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Scurredsitless1 » Tue Nov 03, 2009 9:02 pm

Sometimes Personal Injury attorneys hit gold though. I worked on this case (for one of the railroads) and attended the trial.

http://www.morelaw.com/verdicts/case.as ... CV955&s=PA

User avatar
SteelReserve
Posts: 299
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:46 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby SteelReserve » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:36 pm

Just as there are sleazy Plaintiff's lawyers, there are equally sleazy biglaw associates leading miserable lives defending tortfeasor corporations.

For the OP, if PI is what you want to do, don't sweat any special programs like Baylor's; most law schools are highly ranked in some specific area of the law, but in reality it means nothing.

PI firms definitely care less about school prestige and more about your prospects as a case builder, so go wherever is cheapest.

ToTransferOrNot
Posts: 1928
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:45 am

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:57 pm

SteelReserve wrote:Just as there are sleazy Plaintiff's lawyers, there are equally sleazy biglaw associates leading miserable lives defending tortfeasor corporations.

For the OP, if PI is what you want to do, don't sweat any special programs like Baylor's; most law schools are highly ranked in some specific area of the law, but in reality it means nothing.

PI firms definitely care less about school prestige and more about your prospects as a case builder, so go wherever is cheapest.


The difference is that, because PI is something that can be done in a very small firm, the amount of competition out there is intense, and there's a good chance you won't make enough money to keep food on the table.

If you're a miserable biglaw person defending a tortfeasor corporation, at least you know you'll be able to drink your misery away with quality liquor.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:58 pm

SteelReserve wrote:Just as there are sleazy Plaintiff's lawyers, there are equally sleazy biglaw associates leading miserable lives defending tortfeasor corporations.

For the OP, if PI is what you want to do, don't sweat any special programs like Baylor's; most law schools are highly ranked in some specific area of the law, but in reality it means nothing.

PI firms definitely care less about school prestige and more about your prospects as a case builder, so go wherever is cheapest.


True on all points. Frankly, if the USNWR started ranking on campus bathrooms, you'd have at least one TTT claiming it has the best on campus toiletts.. Specialty rankings are stupid.

User avatar
SteelReserve
Posts: 299
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:46 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby SteelReserve » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:15 pm

Code: Select all

Frankly, if the USNWR started ranking on campus bathrooms, you'd have at least one TTT claiming it has the best on campus toile{TTT}s

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:25 pm

School? wrote:Isn't the bottom of the class at any law school the big feeder for personal injury? I think you can pretty much take your pick...


If by 'bottom' you mean the lower 96% at most law schools ranked 30 - TTTT... then yes, you're correct.

User avatar
Jones, Dow
Posts: 123
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2009 3:42 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Jones, Dow » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:32 pm

grrrstick wrote:What about The Hammer?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFZigCwRhI8


no comments on this? this might be the best pi commercial i have ever seen.

"I cannot proceed until you call....You call, I HAMMER!!!!!"
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

User avatar
SteelReserve
Posts: 299
Joined: Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:46 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby SteelReserve » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:52 pm

Isn't the bottom of the class at any law school the big feeder for personal injury? I think you can pretty much take your pick...


I personally know people at well-ranked schools and on LR/secondary journals interviewing for $15-$20 per hour law clerk positions at PI firms for the summer of their 2L year. Your proposition assumes there are all these wonderful jobs out there for anyone in the top 20% of their class, but these notions have proved false for years, especially ITE. Your question is fair, but unfounded in reality.

The thing about PI is that it is an investment, like law school; your starting salary is low, but if you prove yourself to be a capable litigator, you can make great money down the road.

User avatar
Bustang
Posts: 439
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2009 4:26 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Bustang » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:44 pm

I would argue that Baylor's practice trial program while on paper might not boost you, but would help you significantly if you wanted to pursue PI or really any facet of litigation. There aren't too many programs out there where you get the hands on knowledge that you receive through Baylor's program.

User avatar
reasonable_man
Posts: 2200
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:41 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:59 pm

Bustang wrote:I would argue that Baylor's practice trial program while on paper might not boost you, but would help you significantly if you wanted to pursue PI or really any facet of litigation. There aren't too many programs out there where you get the hands on knowledge that you receive through Baylor's program.



Nope. Go to the school in the area where you want to work if you want to work in a small office. No one will care about the fact that you went to the radical super cool program at Baylor. Moreover, most schools will offer some hands-on experience, but the real experience comes from working anyway. Going to Baylor if you intend to work in PI in chicago is just a bad idea.

DaBears
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 1:19 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby DaBears » Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:36 am

SteelReserve wrote:Just as there are sleazy Plaintiff's lawyers, there are equally sleazy biglaw associates leading miserable lives defending tortfeasor corporations.

For the OP, if PI is what you want to do, don't sweat any special programs like Baylor's; most law schools are highly ranked in some specific area of the law, but in reality it means nothing.

PI firms definitely care less about school prestige and more about your prospects as a case builder, so go wherever is cheapest.


Truer words have never been spoken.

User avatar
ggocat
Posts: 1662
Joined: Sat Dec 13, 2008 1:51 pm

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby ggocat » Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:54 am

reasonable_man wrote:
vvoc wrote:so whats the best route to getting hired at one of these firms? any advice to becoming a successful PI lawyer for a 0L? thanks

Typically, the best way to get into a plaintiff's shop is to clerk for them during law school and hope to hell they hire you afterward. Starting salary is usually in the range of 35k to 50k. Believe it or not, competition for these jobs is pretty intense. Down the line, your starting salary may not increase, but you may either: a) start to get a cut of the fees earned; b) eventually become a partner and share in the profits directly; or c) may decide to strike out on your own, should you feel you have the ability to bring in enough work to sustain yourself.

Try to attend the lowest cost law school option you can and make sure that school is in the region you intend to practice. Personal Injury firms care much less about which school you attend.

Personal injury attorneys can earn anywhere from 35k per year at the very low end to tens of millions per year at the very high end... Getting to the high end is probably far more difficult than making partner at Skadden.

This. Go to school in the region you want to practice, preferably for cheap. During 1L, identify the big player PI firms, and start working as soon as possible at one of them where there is opportunity for a permanent position.

User avatar
Regionality
Posts: 789
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2010 5:13 am

Re: Best Personal Injury Law School Programs?

Postby Regionality » Sat Jun 12, 2010 12:04 pm

A TTTT with no scholarship will assure you personal injury.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: MSNbot Media, tinafeyclone and 3 guests