Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Patriot1208 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:53 pm

Veyron wrote:
deltasigbn wrote:This is off topic, but why are so many TLS forum posters obsessed with biglaw?

I get that the salaries are great, but big law firm jobs sound absolutely dreadful. Enlighten me please :D


Most high profile work, most money, opportunity to be the best and work with the best.

Same reasons people are obsessed with playing for the NFL realy.


Also, at least for me, the opportunity to fight for a casue I beleive in - representing corporate America.

If I can back up my man milton friedman, i'm going to do it.

rundoxierun
Posts: 1893
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2008 1:46 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby rundoxierun » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:10 pm

BruceWayne wrote:The people who keep saying "to pay off school debt" are fooling themselves. That's circular reasoning; one only "needs" biglaw to pay off debt if 1. They refuse to attend a school that would not require big debt (which many choose to avoid doing because they want to go to a school that can get them biglaw) and 2. Even at the schools that give one a good shot at biglaw but leave one in big debt; you can pay off the debt just as easily (perhaps more easily when one considers the huge payments that must be made to loan holders on a biglaw salary, and that biglaw is often in extraordinarily expensive COL locales with very high tax rates) by choosing to do P.I.

People do biglaw because they want the salary and the prestige--not for a "need".


Well the reason I would want biglaw is the combination of paying off debt with the added opportunity of still making good money after my time in biglaw is up. At the company I currently work for(in TN, what would be considered a secondary legal market), most in-house people make close to or above $100k in base salary plus benefits and stock options. The SVP of legal makes $400k+ plus bonus, benefits and killer stock options.

And for those complaining about hours... I spent the day a couple of days ago with someone who works at the lower levels of our company (in contact with the field and customers). Dude works 55+ hrs/wk. in a exhausting job, makes ~$40k and has very little room for salary growth. He would absolutely kill anyone companing about working 55-65 hrs/wk(which is the avg. work week for most biglaw associates I have talked to) in an office and making $160k($125k in my market) starting with 8-10% annual raise and a bonus.

User avatar
Veyron
Posts: 3598
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 3:50 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Veyron » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:34 pm

Patriot1208 wrote:
Veyron wrote:
deltasigbn wrote:This is off topic, but why are so many TLS forum posters obsessed with biglaw?

I get that the salaries are great, but big law firm jobs sound absolutely dreadful. Enlighten me please :D


Most high profile work, most money, opportunity to be the best and work with the best.

Same reasons people are obsessed with playing for the NFL realy.


Also, at least for me, the opportunity to fight for a casue I beleive in - representing corporate America.

If I can back up my man milton friedman, i'm going to do it.


True dat brother. Lets give the enemies of captialism a solid box about the ears with Hayek in one hand and Rand in the other while clentching a Thomas opinion between the teeth like a commando.

User avatar
BruceWayne
Posts: 2032
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:36 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby BruceWayne » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:43 pm

Desert Fox wrote:All the reasons big law sounds miserable exist in shit law, and good PI. Long hours and stress aren't just a big law thing. It's a profession wide thing.

Also big law is like the law version of the medical residency. It opens doors. It's one of the few job types that really trains lawyers at an entry level. Most government agencies don't hire direct from law school. Even PI orgs like a couple years in big law.

It also has most of the interesting private sector work. Do people really want to go into law to have a career litigating grocery store accidents?

But really models and bottles.


LOL no and no to both of the bolded.

1. I'm not sure what you mean by "good PI" but based off of what this board considers good you probably mean DOJ/working as an AUSA at a USAO. They have MUCH better hours than biglaw. It's not even close. They don't even work on Columbus and President's Day--- not to mention job satisfaction amongst people who work for main DOJ and at the USAO's is much higher than biglaw. That's one of the reasons it's hard to get many of the spots; unlike biglaw people don't leave these positions nearly as frequently.

2. Many government agencies hire directly from law school. Particularly the so called "non prestigious" one's. And DOJ does they just prefer a clerkship first. And considering that many of these big firm jobs people are pining for require such high GPAs from top schools, that's not that different in terms of selectivity.

People want biglaw because it pays big bucks and it's "prestigious". Plain and simple. There's nothing wrong with that but that's why people want it.

User avatar
kwais
Posts: 1683
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 12:28 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby kwais » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:44 pm

Veyron wrote:
Patriot1208 wrote:
Veyron wrote:
deltasigbn wrote:This is off topic, but why are so many TLS forum posters obsessed with biglaw?

I get that the salaries are great, but big law firm jobs sound absolutely dreadful. Enlighten me please :D


Most high profile work, most money, opportunity to be the best and work with the best.

Same reasons people are obsessed with playing for the NFL realy.


Also, at least for me, the opportunity to fight for a casue I beleive in - representing corporate America.

If I can back up my man milton friedman, i'm going to do it.


True dat brother. Lets give the enemies of captialism a solid box about the ears with Hayek in one hand and Rand in the other while clentching a Thomas opinion between the teeth like a commando.


Is the above assumption that you are an enemy of capitalism is you think Friedman is a hack and Thomas is a lunatic?

User avatar
Veyron
Posts: 3598
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 3:50 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Veyron » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:48 pm

Is the above assumption that you are an enemy of capitalism is you think Friedman is a hack and Thomas is a lunatic?


Well, Friedman was a bit big-gov for me so I could give you a pass on that. If you think Thomas is a lunatic. . . pistols at dawn?

User avatar
Stringer Bell
Posts: 1923
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:43 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Stringer Bell » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:52 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:for me the only appeal would be the money. im a litigator and I like actually litigating cases. there is no way I could be lead counsel from consult to trial, in any case, at a larger firm. for someone like me who wants to develop into a great trial lawyer, biglaw would be useless experience.

long hours and lifestyle issues can be found in all types of firms, but no one expects to own your ass like a biglaw firm does. im a hard worker, but there are only so many 70+ hour weeks I can do consecutively. Biglaw, AFAICT, is the only type of firm that will expect that of you.


What type of law do you do and what type of firm did you start out at? When I think "biglaw" in the manner OP presents it I'm also incorporating lit boutiques because the pay and the hours are comparable even if the work and the career path might be different.

User avatar
kwais
Posts: 1683
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 12:28 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby kwais » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:53 pm

Veyron wrote:
Is the above assumption that you are an enemy of capitalism is you think Friedman is a hack and Thomas is a lunatic?


Well, Friedman was a bit big-gov for me so I could give you a pass on that. If you think Thomas is a lunatic. . . pistols at dawn?


I'm there. From what I understand though, if I bring all those in agreement and you do the same, I will have more guns.

User avatar
Stringer Bell
Posts: 1923
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:43 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Stringer Bell » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:56 pm

BruceWayne wrote:People want biglaw because it pays big bucks and it's "prestigious". Plain and simple. There's nothing wrong with that but that's why people want it.


The "prestigous" part is less about bragging on TLS or using your firm as a line to pick up girls though. If you want to get a good in-house job, starting out in biglaw gives you a tremendous advantage.

User avatar
Veyron
Posts: 3598
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 3:50 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Veyron » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:56 pm

kwais wrote:
Veyron wrote:
Is the above assumption that you are an enemy of capitalism is you think Friedman is a hack and Thomas is a lunatic?


Well, Friedman was a bit big-gov for me so I could give you a pass on that. If you think Thomas is a lunatic. . . pistols at dawn?


I'm there. From what I understand though, if I bring all those in agreement and you do the same, I will have more guns.


No, you will have more people. The Thomas fans will have the guns.

User avatar
The Valkyrie
Posts: 215
Joined: Sat Dec 04, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby The Valkyrie » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:57 pm

Stringer Bell wrote:
The Valkyrie wrote:for me the only appeal would be the money. im a litigator and I like actually litigating cases. there is no way I could be lead counsel from consult to trial, in any case, at a larger firm. for someone like me who wants to develop into a great trial lawyer, biglaw would be useless experience.

long hours and lifestyle issues can be found in all types of firms, but no one expects to own your ass like a biglaw firm does. im a hard worker, but there are only so many 70+ hour weeks I can do consecutively. Biglaw, AFAICT, is the only type of firm that will expect that of you.


What type of law do you do and what type of firm did you start out at? When I think "biglaw" in the manner OP presents it I'm also incorporating lit boutiques because the pay and the hours are comparable even if the work and the career path might be different.



Business disputes, domestic, criminal

What is an example of a "lit boutique"?

User avatar
kwais
Posts: 1683
Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 12:28 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby kwais » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:58 pm

Veyron wrote:
kwais wrote:
Veyron wrote:
Is the above assumption that you are an enemy of capitalism is you think Friedman is a hack and Thomas is a lunatic?


Well, Friedman was a bit big-gov for me so I could give you a pass on that. If you think Thomas is a lunatic. . . pistols at dawn?


I'm there. From what I understand though, if I bring all those in agreement and you do the same, I will have more guns.


No, you will have more people. The Thomas fans will have the guns.


Touche!

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18422
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby bk1 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 5:59 pm

BruceWayne wrote:2. Many government agencies hire directly from law school. Particularly the so called "non prestigious" one's. And DOJ does they just prefer a clerkship first. And considering that many of these big firm jobs people are pining for require such high GPAs from top schools, that's not that different in terms of selectivity.


Seriously, the example you used was something that less than 10% of T14 grads even get and then go on to say that it is not that different from biglaw in terms of selectivity?

You sir need to hand me some of that fine shit you're smoking cause it must be goooooooood.

jarofsoup
Posts: 1952
Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 2:41 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby jarofsoup » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:03 pm

To be completely honest I am not sure why. I think it people the hope of paying of student loans relatively quickly and a bit of general naivety and prestige seeking. I would like to work for mid-law does not have to be big law. But from what I hear is that when you have a couple years of big law on your resume it gives you a lot of flexibility.

I have heard that the entire big law system will soon change. The of counsel roles may disappear and the billable hour system is changing.

I am a bit scared of the entire process and this is why.

Try to get decent LSAT score>try to get into highest ranked school with that score>try to get top grades>try to pass bar> try to get into big firm>try to make partner.

Just seems like a long and painful process for me from LSAT to partner at firm. But shit I am going to to my best.
Last edited by jarofsoup on Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Stringer Bell
Posts: 1923
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 9:43 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Stringer Bell » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:07 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:What is an example of a "lit boutique"?


Someone I know has worked at two different small shops that specialize in plaintiff side litigation with most of their work representing midsize to large companies. For the freaking life of me I can't remember the name of either firm though. In any event, associates at those firms bill a crapload of hours (2800+) and get paid market but get bigger bonuses if the firm is doing well and actually have a shot to make partner.

User avatar
Kiersten1985
Posts: 784
Joined: Fri Jul 31, 2009 3:36 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Kiersten1985 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:16 pm

boushi wrote:Despite hewing and hawing to the contrary, biglaw can also provide an extremely challenging and intellectually stimulating job. Of course this will depend on whether a given grad finds the right firm, work group, etc., but, outside of a choice few government agencies and clerkships, no where but biglaw will really expose an inexperienced lawyer to extremely complex litigation or business deals. I know it's not everyone's thing, but I've met quite a few biglaw lawyers who found their groove and really enjoy it. On top of that, the salary, partner dreams, and lateral mobility are all obvious draws to certain extents.

Don't forget too that there are many people on this site who have worked in big law firms in some capacity and understand very well there pluses and minuses; it's not like the posters here just amount to some huge, uninformed mass of deluded 0Ls who dream as one in technicolor Wachtell fantasies. At least not all the time.


Thank you.

There are some people who do actually like to work a lot, be challenged, and work on some of the biggest cases around. I worked for two years in BigLaw before law school and really enjoyed it. No, I'm not the norm, but there are lawyers who prefer the big stakes, big names, big cases that BigLaw offers. Not everyone wants just a 9-5 job.

User avatar
The Valkyrie
Posts: 215
Joined: Sat Dec 04, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby The Valkyrie » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:17 pm

How large would a firm like this be? Obvi there's no hard an fast rule, just wondering what a typical size might be

User avatar
Lawquacious
Posts: 2037
Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:36 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Lawquacious » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:23 pm

The money. /thread

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby 09042014 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:26 pm

In before Bruce Wayne shows a pic of his roommate and pretends to be him.

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18422
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby bk1 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:26 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:How large would a firm like this be? Obvi there's no hard an fast rule, just wondering what a typical size might be


--LinkRemoved--

This doesn't take into account how these attorneys are spread across several offices.

User avatar
minnbills
Posts: 3153
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:04 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby minnbills » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:33 pm

It seems to me that the orthodoxy for applicants is that only (as in plausible) biglaw offers a financially rewarding career.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby 09042014 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:36 pm

minnbills wrote:It seems to me that the orthodoxy for applicants is that only (as in plausible) biglaw offers a financially rewarding career.


Fed Gov seems like a great choice. But it's harder than big law to get.

User avatar
bk1
Posts: 18422
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 7:06 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby bk1 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:36 pm

minnbills wrote:It seems to me that the orthodoxy for applicants is that only (as in plausible) biglaw offers a financially rewarding career.


This view is held for probably 1 of 2 reasons:

1. Some people think that law school is a path to riches and that 6 figure salaries are necessary to be "rich."

2. Biglaw is the pretty much the only way (other than LRAP) to feasibly pay back 200k debt in a short time frame.

dkt4
Posts: 316
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 6:33 pm

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby dkt4 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:41 pm

BruceWayne wrote:
LOL no and no to both of the bolded.

1. I'm not sure what you mean by "good PI" but based off of what this board considers good you probably mean DOJ/working as an AUSA at a USAO. They have MUCH better hours than biglaw. It's not even close. They don't even work on Columbus and President's Day--- not to mention job satisfaction amongst people who work for main DOJ and at the USAO's is much higher than biglaw. That's one of the reasons it's hard to get many of the spots; unlike biglaw people don't leave these positions nearly as frequently.

2. Many government agencies hire directly from law school. Particularly the so called "non prestigious" one's. And DOJ does they just prefer a clerkship first. And considering that many of these big firm jobs people are pining for require such high GPAs from top schools, that's not that different in terms of selectivity.

People want biglaw because it pays big bucks and it's "prestigious". Plain and simple. There's nothing wrong with that but that's why people want it.


so, like, 90% of this is wrong.

User avatar
Patriot1208
Posts: 7044
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:28 am

Re: Why are so many people on TLS obsessed with Biglaw?

Postby Patriot1208 » Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:52 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
minnbills wrote:It seems to me that the orthodoxy for applicants is that only (as in plausible) biglaw offers a financially rewarding career.


Fed Gov seems like a great choice. But it's harder than big law to get.

Well some federal government jobs aren't so tough like department of transportation




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: hellohalo, PossumFiesta and 1 guest