International Law/Practicing in Europe

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splitterhopeful
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International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby splitterhopeful » Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:50 pm

Would it be better to earn a JD with an international law concentration (at GULC, George Washington, or American U.) or attend school in Europe? I do not have any foreign language experience, but would love to live and work in Europe practicing law. What would be the best course of action? Is the LSAT even applicable to European law schools? I'm a low GPA splitter, so LSAT is a big deal. I know that it is much different over there. Thanks anyone!

Scheveningen
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Scheveningen » Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:12 pm

Since you do not speak a foreign language, your career opportunities in Europe would be limited to Ireland and the United Kingdom. Several law schools elsewhere, however, offer LL.M. programs in English for which a first law degree is not an absolute prerequisite. Two such schools that come to mind are Leiden and Utrecht in the Netherlands, which are both highly regarded throughout Europe (especially for public international law and human rights law). As far as I know, no European law school requires applicants to take the LSAT.

If I may ask, why do you want to live and practice in Europe?
Last edited by Scheveningen on Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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burtonrideclub
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby burtonrideclub » Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:16 pm

Duck

derrickblagadoush
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby derrickblagadoush » Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:29 am

I'm also interested in concentrating on international law. I've lived in China for a few years, speak the language, and wouldn't mind working there after I graduate. Does anyone know which schools (outside the top-14 I'm afraid) have the best programs to prepare for China law career?

etlien
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby etlien » Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:50 am

I am interested too. Do the European offices of American firms hire directly or are most american trained lawyers working there transfers from american offices?

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nematoad
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby nematoad » Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:58 am

cornell and penn have joint degrees in france in which you get a french masters and can practice law in both the US and France, cornell with the sorbonne and penn with sciences po. only thing is, you need to be fluent in french. if you havent lived in europe yet, id suggest doing so for at least 6 months to a year before you set up your career goals in one direction w/o having ever experienced what it is you think you want. dont get me wrong... i lived in europe and its awesome, but its also not for everyone. check out joint degrees at other US institutions, i cant remember any others off the top of my head but if i do ill post em

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Holly Golightly
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Holly Golightly » Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:01 am

AU and Columbia also offer joint degrees in France, but again you have to be fluent in French. AU offers a few others, but I can't remember off the top of my head what countries they're in.

I'm also looking to do international law, and considering applying to schools in Europe. They don't look at the LSAT, but application procedures are also just completely different here, so a less than stellar GPA wouldn't necessary preclude you from getting into a good school. But make sure you research the specific country/countries you're interested in, because often the requirements to actually practice are totally different. Also, another plus side of school here is that (for the most part) it's a fraction of the cost of going in the U.S.

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holydonkey
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby holydonkey » Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:46 am

derrickblagadoush wrote:I'm also interested in concentrating on international law. I've lived in China for a few years, speak the language, and wouldn't mind working there after I graduate. Does anyone know which schools (outside the top-14 I'm afraid) have the best programs to prepare for China law career?


I've heard university of washington is good for this

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catharsis
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby catharsis » Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:17 am

isnt Tulane also a great option if you want to go international?

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98234872348
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby 98234872348 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:24 am

lol @ this thread.

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chadwick218
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby chadwick218 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:52 am

This thread is a bit silly. Obviously, if you want to practice law exclusively in Europe, then attend law school in the country where you intend to practice (assuming that visa issues down the road will not be a problem).

Otherwise, attend the best possible law school and forget about schools that claim to offer certificates in international law (i.e. GW or American). At the end of the day, you are still going to require ties to where you want to work!

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Holly Golightly
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Holly Golightly » Sat Jan 16, 2010 11:13 am

don't find it entirely silly. As someone who wants to study international law, I'm looking at schools in Europe and in the U.S. And if you know, for example, that you want to practice in France but keep your options open in the U.S., a J.D./master en droit from one of the aforementioned schools would be perfect.

sophie316
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby sophie316 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 12:53 pm

Depends what you want to do. Practice American law in Europe(get a JD), practice the law of the specific country in Europe(go to the country), unsure (this is me, and what I am doing) or practice 'International law' in the sense of working for the EU or something(I'd vote JD but anyone that knows more should correct me).

Also if you're not a European citizen I'd look into the immigration issues before deciding this. Having a European law degree will be of no use to you if you can't get a visa to work there after the fact. And is this a permanent move? I'm not sure how well civil law degrees travel back to the US...you'd probably have to get an LLM later to take the bar if you decided to return.

All in all unless you are dead set on moving to Europe, practicing domestic law there and never returning, probably best to get a JD.

ETA this is all for continental europe. If you want to work in the UK it's not that hard w a JD.

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Gamecubesupreme
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Gamecubesupreme » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:29 pm

I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

ScaredWorkedBored
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby ScaredWorkedBored » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:35 pm

sophie316 wrote:Also if you're not a European citizen I'd look into the immigration issues before deciding this. Having a European law degree will be of no use to you if you can't get a visa to work there after the fact. And is this a permanent move? I'm not sure how well civil law degrees travel back to the US...you'd probably have to get an LLM later to take the bar if you decided to return.


This. This. A thousand times this. There is a huge difference between being posted to a foreign office of a US firm and trying to get yourself set up in a European country as a foreign national. It can be *extraordinarily* difficult to get a work visa if you don't have a multinational employer holding a position for you. In the case of Germany (my sister and one of her friends had experience with this in the general job context), you'll be virtually automatically denied.
Last edited by ScaredWorkedBored on Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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heyyitskatie
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby heyyitskatie » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:35 pm

chadwick218 wrote: Obviously, if you want to practice law exclusively in Europe, then attend law school in the country where you intend to practice (assuming that visa issues down the road will not be a problem).



I can see where this sounds like it makes sense, but many European countries educate lawyers entirely differently than we do. At least in Spain and Italy, they don't have "law school" as something you do after your undergrad...it's something you start doing from the beginning of your college career. Maybe there's a way such that you wouldn't have to start as essentially a freshman in college again, but other than going the LLM route, I don't know what that would be.

Renzo
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Renzo » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:42 pm

Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!

etlien
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby etlien » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:44 pm

Renzo wrote:
Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!


Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.

knola002
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby knola002 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:45 pm

If you are going UK, some schools there require an LNAT (National Admissions Test for Law). Apparently it's like the LSAT but shorter and without logic games.

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chadwick218
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby chadwick218 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:51 pm

Beatrice wrote:don't find it entirely silly. As someone who wants to study international law, I'm looking at schools in Europe and in the U.S. And if you know, for example, that you want to practice in France but keep your options open in the U.S., a J.D./master en droit from one of the aforementioned schools would be perfect.


If you are a U.S. Citizen, this might be the best route. I imagine that if I wanted to work internationally in big law, I would attend a T14 and pursue a JD/Masters of Laws as mentioned above. The T14 would at least open the door to an international firm!

Renzo
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Renzo » Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:59 pm

etlien wrote:
Renzo wrote:
Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!


Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.

Yup. I know two biglaw associates who work/worked in European offices. They have the same credentials as every other biglaw associate. "I want to make sure my biglaw job will allow me to work at a foreign office, what should I do?" is not the same question as, "I want to go to a school that will let me jet off to Prague and open up shop, what should I do?"

sophie316
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby sophie316 » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:01 pm

etlien wrote:
Renzo wrote:
Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!


Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.


Yes but then OP would need an American law degree so the question is moot

Alexandria
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Alexandria » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:04 pm

etlien wrote:
Renzo wrote:
Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!


Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.


How true is this? I have limited experience... I worked in a German office of a large American firm my 1L summer. The attorneys in their German offices were German-educated Germans (though some secondarily had international degrees... sometimes American LLMs, but more often second degrees from other European countries), with the exception of one American guy who was long-term temporarily (it didn't seem like he was actually claimed as one of their office's attorneys instead of "belonging" to his American office, but I think he had been there at least a year) working in one of the German offices.

But it was one firm and one country that I have first-hand knowledge of. I know in the UK, it's a mix of Americans and Brits.

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General Tso
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby General Tso » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:07 pm

etlien wrote:
Renzo wrote:
Gamecubesupreme wrote:I can already feel the anti-international law legion thundering towards this thread.

I'm not anti-international law. I'm anti self-important assclown. Every single county in Europe is full of bright, motivated, and educated law students and potential law students who know the culture and, oh-by-the-way, speak the effing language. Why they fuck does any employer in any foreign country want you, OP? Ooooooooh, I see, because you are truly a special and unique individual! Of course!


Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.


Only the biggest biglaw firms. So to answer OP's question - make biglaw, learn a foreign language, and you might have a chance. Otherwise forget it.

Most of the time these people just like the idea of living in another country. In that case, an MBA from a T20 program in the US would probably work. Some countries like the UK have fast-track programs to permanent residence for holders of top MBAs.

Renzo
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Re: International Law/Practicing in Europe

Postby Renzo » Sat Jan 16, 2010 2:11 pm

Alexandria wrote:
etlien wrote:
Because American law firms have offices in Europe staffed with *gasp* American educated lawyers.


How true is this? I have limited experience... I worked in a German office of a large American firm my 1L summer. The attorneys in their German offices were German-educated Germans (though some secondarily had international degrees... sometimes American LLMs, but more often second degrees from other European countries), with the exception of one American guy who was long-term temporarily (it didn't seem like he was actually claimed as one of their office's attorneys instead of "belonging" to his American office, but I think he had been there at least a year) working in one of the German offices.

But it was one firm and one country that I have first-hand knowledge of. I know in the UK, it's a mix of Americans and Brits.
I think your experience is spot-on. Depending on which firm and which office, there might be more than one US associate, particularly if there is a lot of cross-border M&A work or something of the sort, but in general they are there to handle the US law components of a deal more than to practice the law of whatever nation they are in.




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