Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

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Anonymous User
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Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 17, 2010 9:07 pm

I read on here somewhere before that you aren't suppose to turn down an offer for a judicial internship. My school never had that discussion with us. Is this really true?

I'm a 2L transfer student right now and interviewed with multiple judges and a couple smaller firms around 25 attorneys (surprisingly they are still hiring for this summer). Obviously the firm would be not only the better experience, but probably the only shot I got at finding a job next year. So what do I do if I get an offer from a judge (or judges) and then wait and end up getting an offer from one of the firms I interviewed with? It would be career suicide to not take the offer from the firm.

Anonymous User
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Feb 17, 2010 11:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I read on here somewhere before that you aren't suppose to turn down an offer for a judicial internship. My school never had that discussion with us. Is this really true?

I'm a 2L transfer student right now and interviewed with multiple judges and a couple smaller firms around 25 attorneys (surprisingly they are still hiring for this summer). Obviously the firm would be not only the better experience, but probably the only shot I got at finding a job next year. So what do I do if I get an offer from a judge (or judges) and then wait and end up getting an offer from one of the firms I interviewed with? It would be career suicide to not take the offer from the firm.
I'm not sold on the idea that you HAVE to accept a judicial internship. Although I understand it applies to clerkships, I'm not so convinced about internships. I met with the clerkship advisor at my school to discuss applying to judicial internships, and she never said anything suggesting that I had to accept a judge's offer. In terms of competition, the stakes for the judges, etc an internship simply isn't the same as a clerkship.

Here's my advice: once you've accepted with a judge, I don't really think you can back out (that's poor form in general). But if you end up with an open offer from both a firm and a judge and haven't accepted either yet, I see no reason why you can't politely turn down the judge and accept with the firm. I think the judge will understand what's at stake for you.

Good luck!

Renzo
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Renzo » Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:54 pm

The conventional wisdom is that you never, ever turn down a judge. That being said, I think you're in a different position as a 2L. If you are fairly sure that a given firm SA spot would result in a permanent offer, you'd be crazy not to turn down the judge. Think of it this way: is it worse for your career to potentially offend someone you might potentially appear in front of someday, or never to appear in front of anyone because you don't have a job.

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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:09 pm

My school does not have a policy where you have to accept an internship. Some judges will want a reply on the spot and others will give you a week or more. If you don't want to work for that judge, and your school doesn't have a policy against turning down judges, there's no reason why you should take it.

Renzo
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Renzo » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:My school does not have a policy where you have to accept an internship. Some judges will want a reply on the spot and others will give you a week or more. If you don't want to work for that judge, and your school doesn't have a policy against turning down judges, there's no reason why you should take it.

1) Why is this anonymous?

2)Few to zero schools will have an official policy requiring you to take any judge's offer; it's more of a professional courtesy/legal industry social norm.

ScaredWorkedBored
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby ScaredWorkedBored » Sat Feb 20, 2010 11:18 am

The reason people tell you not to take interviews with judges unless you are serious is that judges sometimes handle intern interivews like clerkship interviews. That offer may come in person. *That's* primarily the circumstance where "don't turn down a judge" comes from. With internships & correspondence offers, it shouldn't be as big a deal. However, if you think you can sit on a judge offer forever, you've got another think coming.

That's for accepting the job. What you seem to be saying, since the odds of sitting on a judge offer long enough to have the firm options as well are...low, is "I'll quit if I get something better after taking Job A w/ judge." That's entirely different and that *will* cause people to be pissed at you. You screwed up someone's plans and wasted their time because you were dishonest about your level of commitment in the interview. This is not acceptable conduct in any field.

I would be up-front when interviewing with judges about really needing paying work if that's available. It is what it is and they'll probably understand.

djeter2
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby djeter2 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 2:14 pm

For what it's worth this was a bizarre situation. I did not interview with the judge, and was offered the position after only sending in my materials and then ultimately my grades (they're above median at a top 10, but not excellent). I also am a 1L. I'm really conflicted on this and think that I'd better answer as soon as possible (I received the offer yesterday and feel like I'd better respond today). No deadline was given.

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20130312
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby 20130312 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 2:17 pm

djeter2 wrote:For what it's worth this was a bizarre situation. I did not interview with the judge, and was offered the position after only sending in my materials and then ultimately my grades (they're above median at a top 10, but not excellent). I also am a 1L. I'm really conflicted on this and think that I'd better answer as soon as possible (I received the offer yesterday and feel like I'd better respond today). No deadline was given.


Sweet necrobump.

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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby legalese_retard » Wed Jan 25, 2012 2:27 pm

djeter2 wrote:For what it's worth this was a bizarre situation. I did not interview with the judge, and was offered the position after only sending in my materials and then ultimately my grades (they're above median at a top 10, but not excellent). I also am a 1L. I'm really conflicted on this and think that I'd better answer as soon as possible (I received the offer yesterday and feel like I'd better respond today). No deadline was given.


My 2cents - take the internship, especially if it is with a federal judge. If you decide to pursue a judicial clerkship down the road, this experience (and resume bump) will be invaluable. The same thing happened to me where I got the internship without even speaking with the judge. It is not as bizarre as you think. Most judges don't waste time interviewing potential interns.

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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 30, 2012 10:42 pm

I'm in a similar situation as djeter2 - I have an interview with a judge coming up and a couple interviews with firms. But my grades are just above median at a top 10 school - should I give up hope for a 1L summer firm job and accept the externship if offered? Thanks for your advice.

kublaikahn
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby kublaikahn » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:12 pm

No.

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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:27 pm

kublaikahn wrote:No.


Thanks for your thoughts. I have three firm interviews through OCI that I was pre-selected for (it's a small program for the 1Ls), but they haven't seen my grades yet. The interview with the judge is tomorrow and the other interviews are 7 and 10 days from now, and they will probably require a second round. Is there any way to ask to wait? I really need money, I have no family support and it's an expensive area to live in - but I don't want to end up with nothing!

kublaikahn
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby kublaikahn » Mon Jan 30, 2012 11:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
kublaikahn wrote:No.


Thanks for your thoughts. I have three firm interviews through OCI that I was pre-selected for (it's a small program for the 1Ls), but they haven't seen my grades yet. The interview with the judge is tomorrow and the other interviews are 7 and 10 days from now, and they will probably require a second round. Is there any way to ask to wait? I really need money, I have no family support and it's an expensive area to live in - but I don't want to end up with nothing!


Go talk to your CDO. They will instruct you on how to handle it. But I promise they will be pissed to high heaven if you turn down a clerkship.

Edited: I mean internship.

traydeuce
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Re: Judicial internships -- can I turn down an offer?

Postby traydeuce » Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:17 am

I turned down one clerkship (exploding offer) to take another (offer stayed open for a few days); my career services office did not murder me, or seem particularly surprised or bothered, or question my decision to ask the first judge who gave me an offer to wait a few days, or anything. But maybe they're incompetent and I did some terrible thing.




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