Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

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GatorEagle1
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Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby GatorEagle1 » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:20 pm

Brief personal background - I attend TTT state school in Sun Belt, pay 10k tuition, and will probably have 100k in debt after graduation. My grades were at the lower end of the curve.

So I am talking with my parents and letting them know about my poor grades, debt issues, and low job prospects. But they don't want to hear it. They'll say "the job market will change in a few years," "I took out debt on my mortgage and am making it," and "you'll learn how to study better and get higher grades."

I'm on the fence about returning next year, and I don't want to turn this into a self-fulfilling prophecy about seeking to fail. I had a teaching career for a few years which didn't work out, and I would genuinely want to perform a lawyer's job duties, especially involving public interest, if money and job prospects weren't a major issue (I know jobs don't fall into people's laps usually, and that a little debt is ok).

Anyways, has anyone here had a similar issue with their parents who seem totally naive about the law profession? What can be done to let them know the risks of this career path?

BeenDidThat
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby BeenDidThat » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:26 pm

GatorEagle1 wrote:Brief personal background - I attend TTT state school in Sun Belt, pay 10k tuition, and will probably have 100k in debt after graduation. My grades were at the lower end of the curve.

So I am talking with my parents and letting them know about my poor grades, debt issues, and low job prospects. But they don't want to hear it. They'll say "the job market will change in a few years," "I took out debt on my mortgage and am making it," and "you'll learn how to study better and get higher grades."

I'm on the fence about returning next year, and I don't want to turn this into a self-fulfilling prophecy about seeking to fail. I had a teaching career for a few years which didn't work out, and I would genuinely want to perform a lawyer's job duties, especially involving public interest, if money and job prospects weren't a major issue (I know jobs don't fall into people's laps usually, and that a little debt is ok).

Anyways, has anyone here had a similar issue with their parents who seem totally naive about the law profession? What can be done to let them know the risks of this career path?


Why, exactly, do you give a fuck about making them come around to your (more reasonable) point-of-view? Just because they're your parents? If you want, you can show them the graphs running around here about salaries and you can compile data from your school and other sources about how grads of your school do after graduation. But if, as I suspect, your parents are like many people, and really don't understand how the world and finances work, you don't have some duty to set them straight. If anything, this could be a good opportunity for you to learn to look after yourself and, within reason, ignore the irrational mindsets of others, mindsets over which you have little control.

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moneybagsphd
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby moneybagsphd » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:30 pm

GatorEagle1 wrote:Anyways, has anyone here had a similar issue with their parents who seem totally naive about the law profession? What can be done to let them know the risks of this career path?

sorry, your folks sound like willfully ignorant boomers. have your parents read any of the articles that come out every other week in the nytimes/wsj advising people not to go to law school? not sure that will convince them of anything since they seem so determined to believe everything is business as usual.

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LawyerBrah
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby LawyerBrah » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:35 pm

You're a bit on the fence about returning where?

Also, how old are you? I'm assuming that 100k in debt isn't all from school.

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Br3v
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby Br3v » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:37 pm

I'm confused, you have 100k UG debt, or would have 100k law school debt if completed 3 years?

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Drake014
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby Drake014 » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:39 pm

GatorEagle1 wrote:Brief personal background - I attend TTT state school in Sun Belt, pay 10k tuition, and will probably have 100k in debt after graduation. My grades were at the lower end of the curve.

So I am talking with my parents and letting them know about my poor grades, debt issues, and low job prospects. But they don't want to hear it. They'll say "the job market will change in a few years," "I took out debt on my mortgage and am making it," and "you'll learn how to study better and get higher grades."

I'm on the fence about returning next year, and I don't want to turn this into a self-fulfilling prophecy about seeking to fail. I had a teaching career for a few years which didn't work out, and I would genuinely want to perform a lawyer's job duties, especially involving public interest, if money and job prospects weren't a major issue (I know jobs don't fall into people's laps usually, and that a little debt is ok).

Anyways, has anyone here had a similar issue with their parents who seem totally naive about the law profession? What can be done to let them know the risks of this career path?


Have them read this message board.

GatorEagle1
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby GatorEagle1 » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:39 pm

On the fence about returning to law school after 1L year based on my poor grades and job/debt prospects (not home unless there's real desperation lol). Also 100k is just rough estimate of expected debt unless my school somehow becomes generous with mediocre law students or I win the lotto.

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Nova
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby Nova » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:40 pm

Show them your school's LST page

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moneybagsphd
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby moneybagsphd » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:42 pm

Nova wrote:Show them your school's LST page

why do people think that reason will work on shitboomers?

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stillwater
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby stillwater » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:44 pm

once shitboomers devour the world, what will be left?

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LawyerBrah
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby LawyerBrah » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:58 pm

GatorEagle1 wrote:On the fence about returning to law school after 1L year based on my poor grades and job/debt prospects (not home unless there's real desperation lol). Also 100k is just rough estimate of expected debt unless my school somehow becomes generous with mediocre law students or I win the lotto.


If you're only paying 10k a year for tuition and already completed your first year, I'd probably finish.

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cinephile
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby cinephile » Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:11 pm

LawyerBrah wrote:
GatorEagle1 wrote:On the fence about returning to law school after 1L year based on my poor grades and job/debt prospects (not home unless there's real desperation lol). Also 100k is just rough estimate of expected debt unless my school somehow becomes generous with mediocre law students or I win the lotto.


If you're only paying 10k a year for tuition and already completed your first year, I'd probably finish.


This is terrible advice and you should ignore it.

It sounds like 10k a year for tuition PLUS COL loans, right? This is how you end up with 100k in debt from law school. This is a large amount, particularly for a TTT PARTICULARLY for someone who is not in the very top of the class. For someone like yourself, dropping out is unquestionably the right decision. Although it may be difficult for your parents to hear this now, think how much more difficult it'll be for them when you ask to move in with them after graduating law school and not finding a job. Do they promise to support you forever if you can't make something of your law degree? You mentioned the mortgage analogy - does your dad think you can live inside your diploma? If they can't understand commonsense when they hear it, that's too bad but it's not your problem. You're an adult and have to make this decision for yourself. As soon as you find another career and are happy and independent, I'm sure they'll be pleased.

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby jenesaislaw » Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:29 pm

Why not leave now, before paying this semester's tuition and borrowing to live?

Paul Campos
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby Paul Campos » Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:40 pm

cinephile wrote:
LawyerBrah wrote:
GatorEagle1 wrote:On the fence about returning to law school after 1L year based on my poor grades and job/debt prospects (not home unless there's real desperation lol). Also 100k is just rough estimate of expected debt unless my school somehow becomes generous with mediocre law students or I win the lotto.


If you're only paying 10k a year for tuition and already completed your first year, I'd probably finish.


This is terrible advice and you should ignore it.

It sounds like 10k a year for tuition PLUS COL loans, right? This is how you end up with 100k in debt from law school. This is a large amount, particularly for a TTT PARTICULARLY for someone who is not in the very top of the class. For someone like yourself, dropping out is unquestionably the right decision. Although it may be difficult for your parents to hear this now, think how much more difficult it'll be for them when you ask to move in with them after graduating law school and not finding a job. Do they promise to support you forever if you can't make something of your law degree? You mentioned the mortgage analogy - does your dad think you can live inside your diploma? If they can't understand commonsense when they hear it, that's too bad but it's not your problem. You're an adult and have to make this decision for yourself. As soon as you find another career and are happy and independent, I'm sure they'll be pleased.


This.

Your chances of getting and keeping legal jobs that pay more than you can make in your former career are slim. Don't throw good money after bad.

Ti Malice
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby Ti Malice » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:46 pm

LawyerBrah wrote:
GatorEagle1 wrote:On the fence about returning to law school after 1L year based on my poor grades and job/debt prospects (not home unless there's real desperation lol). Also 100k is just rough estimate of expected debt unless my school somehow becomes generous with mediocre law students or I win the lotto.


If you're only paying 10k a year for tuition and already completed your first year, I'd probably finish.


This is some of the worst advice possible.

ksllaw
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby ksllaw » Sat Jan 12, 2013 4:34 pm

Sorry to hear of your difficulties, OP. I definitely wish you the best whatever final decision you do decide to make.

In so far as trying to explain the legal economy to your parents, I would utilize reputable sources that they would easily recognize. The problem with asking them to read an online forum or a few blog posts on the subject matter - and even a news article from a source that was not nationally circulated or otherwise well-known - is that to the uninformed, it could seem to just be the skewed opinion of a few. You want to explain your case and back it up with reputable sources and data that cannot be easily dismissed, so that they can understand and be convinced of the truth of the matter.

I recommend Deborah Rhode (Stanford Prof. of Law) and Paul Campos' (Colorado Prof. of Law) lecture/talk, which can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2gvnPTHvH8 (3/5/12)

In it, they discuss the crisis in the legal economy and with law schools. Having the word of two actual prestigious law professors ought to help your case a great deal.

Additionally, the NYT piece a few years ago, by David Segal, "Is Law School a Losing Game?," (2011) is another dagger into the myth of law school being a mostly good investment and that all law grads make great money.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/09/busin ... d=all&_r=0

I believe Segal's piece was the first of it's kind (at the time) from a mainstream news source to address this topic. It opened the eyes of many.

And, lastly, you may wish to have them take a look at law Prof. (WUSTL) Brian Tamanaha's new book, Failing Law Schools (2012):

http://www.amazon.com/Failing-Law-Schoo ... 0226923614

LSTfan
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Re: Convincing parents about risks of pursuing legal career

Postby LSTfan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:14 pm

.




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