Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

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chrisryan

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Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby chrisryan » Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:49 am

I am a CPA that works in tax at a Big 4 firm. I recently got promoted to manager and make decent money (95k or so) living in California. In the past few years, I've been getting bored of accounting and compliance work (reviewing tax returns). I do enjoy the consultative work, but there is very little of it in my career (10-20% on average). Therefore, I am thinking of applying to law school.

I am considering law school for a few reasons: 1. Much better pay for Big Law (about twice what I make starting), 2. More interesting work, 3. Making a bigger impact than tax compliance will in my opinion, 4. prestige/status (hey I am honest).

I would only go to law school if I could get into a T-14 or potentially a top 20 school that is known for placing more than the top 5% in Big Law as I want this decision to give me a better return on investment.

I have a few questions as I am hoping to get some guidance and avoid putting myself in financial ruin:

1. My GPA at undergrad was fairly low (3.1-3.2). It's my understanding that if I get a very high LSAT, I have a chance at T-14. If so, what schools should I aim for?

2. Has anyone here made a similar career change and how did it go? If not, what do you advise me to do if you were in my situation?

3. If I do decide to start studying, I was planning to use The LSAT Trainer and 7Sage. Should i just use the materials for LSAT Trainer and 7Sage for practice questions, or would I use the 7Sage materials also? Would this be all I need to prepare for the LSAT? If not, what else should I consider?

4. What is the environment at Big Law really like? Do you really need to be in the office every night until 10 PM or so? I am a hard worker and put in about 1,800 - 2,000 billable hours a year, but I don't work late every night just to make the partners happy (unless I have urgent work). In addition, I work from home in the late evenings. Would this be allowed?

5. If I do decide to start studying, I will take the LSAT in December. Would this be a bad decision as I will be late in the admissions process?

6. I am in my late twenties. Would graduating from law school in my early thirties impact my ability to land a Big Law job?

7. Will the Big 4 and CPA experience help me in the admissions process or finding a job?

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OakBrook2021

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Re: Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby OakBrook2021 » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:28 am

How does law "make a bigger impact" than compliance?

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OakBrook2021

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Re: Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby OakBrook2021 » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:34 am

If I were you I'd take the LSAT and then decide whether going is an option (or retaking). Just know that if you get into a T14 at full price you pretty much have to work at a big firm for ten years (whether or not you get bored or hate your work) just to repay your loans. You can find plenty of posts on this site about the QOL in biglaw, but pretty much every attorney I've ever talked to has said you will have little to no life at a big firm (even in secondary markets). On the upside, you will get paid much more money than you're worth lol

chrisryan

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Re: Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby chrisryan » Fri Sep 01, 2017 5:31 pm

OakBrook2021 wrote:How does law "make a bigger impact" than compliance?

It's my understanding that there is more value added work involved.

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Sacred Cow

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Re: Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby Sacred Cow » Fri Sep 01, 2017 5:39 pm

chrisryan wrote:I do enjoy the consultative work


Seems like it would be a lot easier to lateral into a consulting job, no?

teleste

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Re: Transition from Big 4 to Law School?

Postby teleste » Fri Sep 01, 2017 5:55 pm

chrisryan wrote:I've been getting bored of accounting and compliance work (reviewing tax returns). I do enjoy the consultative work, but there is very little of it in my career (10-20% on average).


MBA.

chrisryan wrote:2. More interesting work, 3. Making a bigger impact than tax compliance will in my opinion, 4. prestige/status (hey I am honest).


MBA.

chrisryan wrote:1. My GPA at undergrad was fairly low (3.1-3.2).


MBA.

chrisryan wrote:2. Has anyone here made a similar career change


MBA.

chrisryan wrote:What is the environment at Big Law really like? Do you really need to be in the office every night until 10 PM or so? I am a hard worker and put in about 1,800 - 2,000 billable hours a year, but I don't work late every night just to make the partners happy (unless I have urgent work). In addition, I work from home in the late evenings. Would this be allowed?


MBA.

chrisryan wrote:Will the Big 4 and CPA experience help me in the admissions process or finding a job?


MBA.



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