Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

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icydash
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby icydash » Mon Jun 07, 2010 9:43 pm

Oh just as a side note, I go to a T40 school and had a 3.52 GPA and got a half tuition scholarship with great conditions. My LSAT wasn't that great either (164)....So with a 170+ i'm sure you can do the same at a T30.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 9:56 pm

icydash wrote:Oh just as a side note, I go to a T40 school and had a 3.52 GPA and got a half tuition scholarship with great conditions. My LSAT wasn't that great either (164)....So with a 170+ i'm sure you can do the same at a T30.


Wow, thank you. That is great news.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 9:59 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:They do when they can afford them, and then they are probably going to go with a 40-50+ year old guy whose been doing whatever type of case it is they need handled for many years. Often they will get referrals from friends or coworkers. When you start your own firm, you won't have the luxury to turn paying clients away because you think they might be guilty. And ask anyone who has worked in small firm crim defense et al how much time they spend trying to collect atty fees.

Scallywaggums wrote:People in the [disappearing] middle class hire lawyers....... don't they?

Let's say criminal defense: am I completely delusional to dream of one day building this theoretical firm up so that I can just do criminal defense for cases where I actually believe the defendant is innocent?


Hrmmm. With this and icydash's dad, it seems like I'd need to partner up with at least one older vet to make it feasible.

Any other anecdotals?

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:06 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:
$100K outside of biglaw is rare. Unless you can luck out and get a job at a large regional firm (very hard to land), I'd say the chances of making $100K to start outside biglaw are pretty much nil.



I did not realize the market was basically BigLaw or bust (being less than $100K). Do others agree that $100K outside of biglaw is rare?

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thesealocust
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:09 pm

never mind
Last edited by thesealocust on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

icydash
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby icydash » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:09 pm

Scallywaggums wrote:
yabbadabbado wrote:
$100K outside of biglaw is rare. Unless you can luck out and get a job at a large regional firm (very hard to land), I'd say the chances of making $100K to start outside biglaw are pretty much nil.



I did not realize the market was basically BigLaw or bust (being less than $100K). Do others agree that $100K outside of biglaw is rare?

Not from what I've seen - I know quite a few attorneys first-hand that are not biglaw and make 80k-100k/yr.

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thesealocust
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:10 pm

never mind
Last edited by thesealocust on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:17 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:Let me guess, you haven't even taken the LSAT yet, have you?... Why don't you worry about the LSAT for now, figure out where to apply after that, then evaluate your offers as they come in?


1) No, but it'll be between 166 and 174, likely 168-170.
2) This thread has DRASTICALLY changed my perspective on what my life might be like, so I'm glad I started it now, BEFORE I choose where to apply.
3) If I had a specific score, this thread would not be as general and, by extension, relevant to others. I'm glad we're not discussing specific schools, because I hope I'm not the only one using this thread to plot for the day I can be home by 6:00.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:19 pm

thesealocust wrote:
Welcome to the bimodal distribution. You're learning a lot tonight :D


WOW... I've seen similar graphs, but from earlier. That is extreeeme.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:21 pm

thesealocust wrote:
icydash wrote:I know quite a few attorneys first-hand that are not biglaw and make 80k-100k/yr.


As a matter of population statistics, it's still very rare right out of law school. New attorneys tend to only command (near) six figure starting salaries as part of large & leveraged operations.


Icy, how many years deep are these people?

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lostjake
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby lostjake » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:26 pm

swiggybottoms

IRL if you have any doubts about going into law you shouldn't go. You sound like a liberal arts major who can't find a job, and for these people going to law school is probably the worse decision they can make if they do it based on just that. Remember in life there is no do over, so if you take out that debt and can't find any job you're screwed.

Advice: Do not go to law school.

icydash
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby icydash » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:36 pm

Scallywaggums wrote:
thesealocust wrote:
icydash wrote:I know quite a few attorneys first-hand that are not biglaw and make 80k-100k/yr.


As a matter of population statistics, it's still very rare right out of law school. New attorneys tend to only command (near) six figure starting salaries as part of large & leveraged operations.


Icy, how many years deep are these people?

Reasonably new -- I'd say they're 28ish? So maybe 3-4 years deep?

My friend whose a 3L says being a prosecutor is a pretty good gig. It's not that hard to get, pays 50-60k a year, and is mostly a 9-5 job. I'll just copy and paste from his IM conversation haha:

i've had this discussion with them
they all look at it as a trade off
their car isn't as nice
but they get a life outside work
most of what a prosecutor does isn't trial, either
every morning, there's a court docket they have to deal with
and that's like arraignments
and bail hearings
which take about an hour
and you just fly through defendants
the rest of the day is writing motions, and negotiating plea deals, basically
the vast, vast majority of defendants plead out
so trials are actually not that common for the individual prosecutors
the other good thing is...
if you work a public service job, like being a prosecutor
your monthly loan payments are cut significantly
and after 10 years, they forgive all your loans






So maybe this is the job for you?
Last edited by icydash on Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:38 pm

lostjake wrote:swiggybottoms

IRL if you have any doubts about going into law you shouldn't go. You sound like a liberal arts major who can't find a job, and for these people going to law school is probably the worse decision they can make if they do it based on just that. Remember in life there is no do over, so if you take out that debt and can't find any job you're screwed.

Advice: Do not go to law school.


1) Amazing nickname. Tickles my heart.
2) Come on, man. :( A liiiiittle slack? I've made my case earlier. Law school is my play, for solid reasons. I'll just have to adjust my workweek expectations till I'm 30 or so when I plug my nose, start a firm with a couple partners, and dive... unless I luck out and land one of the few rarities discussed above.
3) I've been working full-time since ten-ish days after graduation.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:47 pm

icydash wrote:
My friend whose a 3L says being a prosecutor is a pretty good gig. It's not that hard to get, pays 50-60k a year, and is mostly a 9-5 job. I'll just copy and paste from his IM conversation haha:

i've had this discussion with them
they all look at it as a trade off
their car isn't as nice
but they get a life outside work
most of what a prosecutor does isn't trial, either
every morning, there's a court docket they have to deal with
and that's like arraignments
and bail hearings
which take about an hour
and you just fly through defendants
the rest of the day is writing motions, and negotiating plea deals, basically
the vast, vast majority of defendants plead out
so trials are actually not that common for the individual prosecutors
the other good thing is...
if you work a public service job, like being a prosecutor
your monthly loan payments are cut significantly
and after 10 years, they forgive all your loans


So maybe this is the job for you?


The numbers add up, and I jumped at first at this key for our until-now stubborn lock, but the job description is leaving me hanging. If I'm gonna be a public servant, I'd rather be on the defending side. Why does it sound like the prosecutors have a WAAAAAAY better job than PD's?

Gotsta go, I'll have to respond to subsequent posts on the morrow. Thanks again everyone.

icydash
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby icydash » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:50 pm

Scallywaggums wrote:
icydash wrote:
My friend whose a 3L says being a prosecutor is a pretty good gig. It's not that hard to get, pays 50-60k a year, and is mostly a 9-5 job. I'll just copy and paste from his IM conversation haha:

i've had this discussion with them
they all look at it as a trade off
their car isn't as nice
but they get a life outside work
most of what a prosecutor does isn't trial, either
every morning, there's a court docket they have to deal with
and that's like arraignments
and bail hearings
which take about an hour
and you just fly through defendants
the rest of the day is writing motions, and negotiating plea deals, basically
the vast, vast majority of defendants plead out
so trials are actually not that common for the individual prosecutors
the other good thing is...
if you work a public service job, like being a prosecutor
your monthly loan payments are cut significantly
and after 10 years, they forgive all your loans


So maybe this is the job for you?


The numbers add up, and I jumped at first at this key for our until-now stubborn lock, but the job description is leaving me hanging. If I'm gonna be a public servant, I'd rather be on the defending side. Why does it sound like the prosecutors have a WAAAAAAY better job than PD's?

Gotsta go, I'll have to respond to subsequent posts on the morrow. Thanks again everyone.

But as a PD you might be defending someone you know/think is guilty, which you previously mentioned (i think) is morally controversial to you, or you'd rather not do. If you're on the prosecution side, then you get to prosecute those people, and possibly help people you think are innocent.

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thesealocust
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:55 pm

never mind
Last edited by thesealocust on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

OnWisconsin
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby OnWisconsin » Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:01 pm

thesealocust wrote:
Scallywaggums wrote:
thesealocust wrote:
Scallywaggums wrote:I was always the annoying kid in high school who reveled in disagreement. I was a social misfit before college. I will enjoy the work if it's not mundane. I'm confident that law school is the right play.


People like you are why people like me enjoy the law and law school but turn into raging alcoholics anyway.

HTH.


Hyuckles.

You mean people like me annoy you 'cause we enjoy nitpicking arguments for the hell of it... often when the actual subject matter is trivial??? :D


You have no idea how much I hate you right now. Seething, bitter, unmitigated contempt. Fire-eyed fury.



Awesome sounds like we've got a future gunner.

Not just a gunner, an endless, argumentative, hypothetical, change the facts and form of the question from the professor a thousand different ways until the initial given answer has semblance of being correct, gunner.

Don't worry about the job.

You'll make a great career politician.

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ggocat
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby ggocat » Tue Jun 08, 2010 9:38 am

Scallywaggums wrote:
ggocat wrote:
romothesavior wrote:
Scallywaggums wrote:
Seriously though, what does HTH stand for?


http://lmgtfy.com/?q=What+does+HTH+stand+for%3F

It's after 5:00 p.m. You expect OP to do any work?


Haha. Once a cleverness threshold is surpassed, being the brunt of a joke isn't so bad.

Haha. Sorry. I'm finding this thread entertaining for some reason.

Scallywaggums wrote:Let's say criminal defense: am I completely delusional to dream of one day building this theoretical firm up so that I can just do criminal defense for cases where I actually believe the defendant is innocent?

Probably not because most people charged with crimes actually did it.

But you can still do good by helping someone who did the crime.

Scallywaggums wrote:icydash threw out a ballpark of 200-300K. Anyone else's thoughts on this?

That's exactly the range I heard from an experienced solo in a small market. But he is a personal injury attorney and was talking more about that line of work (where you are paid on contingency only after you settle or get a verdict).

You definitely don't need a huge bank roll to start a firm. If you start a firm out of school, you will likely do some low-end work (and by "low-end," I don't necessarily mean any particular area of work--I mean low value and low return). But I've known people who were relatively successful yet had to finance start up on credit cards (not recommended).

Scallywaggums wrote:Hrmmm. With this and icydash's dad, it seems like I'd need to partner up with at least one older vet to make it feasible.

Any other anecdotals?

Most "going solo" books and blogs seem to discourage starting a partnership, particularly if you are new to the game. There are other arrangements that can be made, such as office sharing and non-exclusive referrals, which give you most of the benefits of the partnership without the risk and drama. During your time as a law student or new lawyer, you may also encounter some attorneys who will act as mentors, and some state bar associations have formal mentoring programs and small firm start-up sections with plenty of resources.

Jay Foonberg's How to Start and Build a Law Practice is one of the better books on starting a practice (although it's geared more toward attorneys who are ready to make the plunge): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/159031 ... PESY14S089.

Just do some googling on the topic to see if starting a firm is for you.

mikeh915
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby mikeh915 » Tue Jun 08, 2010 9:48 am

Scallywaggums wrote:
Greater than 1/2 tuition at T30 is probably impossible with a GPA of 3.55. I assume I'd need to be at LEAST above median for LSAT and GPA to do that. Am i correct that an LSAT above 75th percentile will get me in, but not land a massive scholly with a 3.55 that is below median?

Do other people think that Georgetown or Cornell at sticker is a better bet than the best scholly from a T30-100?
If you disagree, how far down the rankings would your cutoff point be before T11-14 at sticker sounded better?



By the way I was 3.54, 172.
I got multiple 1/2 to full scholarship offers at T30s and T14 acceptance. I didn't take my PS seriously and I have no softs of consequence. If you break the 170 mark with a 3.55 you won't only have the option of t-11 to t-14 sticker or TTT debt free. You will have many options in between for little to no debt.

also 2 offers had no conditions what so ever; 2 had like maintain median or something like that I believe

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Tue Jun 08, 2010 5:44 pm

icydash wrote:
Scallywaggums wrote:
icydash wrote:
My friend whose a 3L says being a prosecutor is a pretty good gig. It's not that hard to get, pays 50-60k a year, and is mostly a 9-5 job...

So maybe this is the job for you?


... If I'm gonna be a public servant, I'd rather be on the defending side. Why does it sound like the prosecutors have a WAAAAAAY better job than PD's?

But as a PD you might be defending someone you know/think is guilty, which you previously mentioned (i think) is morally controversial to you, or you'd rather not do. If you're on the prosecution side, then you get to prosecute those people, and possibly help people you think are innocent.


True. But I'd rest easier keeping a crook out of jail (especially for a non-violent crime, most of which I'd rather not enforce) than putting an innocent person behind bars.

But you suggest that prosecutors actually offer good bargains if they suspect innocence? I had always assumed it was their job description to go for the worst, and the PD's job to do the opposite. Is this incorrect? Do prosecutors actually have more flexibility?

Also, are PD's really that busy? If so, why do prosecutors work 9-5 while PDs have longer hours without better pay? Is being a prosecutor accepted as being a notch above PD in terms of skill and desirability, or is this picture not yet complete?

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:12 pm

ggocat wrote:...most people charged with crimes actually did it.


This is a very interesting point in the Prosecutor/Defender question. I never thought about this, but it makes sense that mistakes & framing are less frequent.

Here's the tricky part: I would not want to give people fines for most non-violent crimes, let alone put them in jail.

No clue how to balance this. I assume that the vast majority of cases are relatively trivial... yes?

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ggocat
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby ggocat » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:15 pm

Scallywaggums wrote:True. But I'd rest easier keeping a crook out of jail (especially for a non-violent crime, most of which I'd rather not enforce) than putting an innocent person behind bars.

But you suggest that prosecutors actually offer good bargains if they suspect innocence? I had always assumed it was their job description to go for the worst, and the PD's job to do the opposite. Is this incorrect? Do prosecutors actually have more flexibility?

Also, are PD's really that busy? If so, why do prosecutors work 9-5 while PDs have longer hours without better pay? Is being a prosecutor accepted as being a notch above PD in terms of skill and desirability, or is this picture not yet complete?

Prosecutors have an incredible amount of flexibility, particularly after a few years. They do not prosecute people they think are innocent. They are under a legal obligation to "do justice," not convict people. A prosecutor has incredible power because he/she can prevent injustice rather than simply defend against it.

PDs are in fact busy, but so are many prosecutors. Many, many prosecutors work more than 9-5. I also think it's incorrect to assume that prosecutors are paid better than PDs (it may be true in some states, but none that I'm familiar with).

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ggocat
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby ggocat » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:21 pm

Scallywaggums wrote:
ggocat wrote:...most people charged with crimes actually did it.


This is a very interesting point in the Prosecutor/Defender question. I never thought about this, but it makes sense that mistakes & framing are less frequent.

Here's the tricky part: I would not want to give people fines for most non-violent crimes, let alone put them in jail.

No clue how to balance this. I assume that the vast majority of cases are relatively trivial... yes?

Prosecutors enforce the law; they do not create it. You would not be able to categorically ignore statutes enacted by the state legislator simply because you disagree with them. If your moral center prevents you from doing so, then that's OK. You can be a lawyer and a person at the same time, but you just shouldn't be a prosecutor.

In many jurisdictions, you will work your way up as a prosecutor; sometimes starting in traffic court (i.e., relatively trivial matters). It depends, though. Some recent graduates are doing misdemeanors or felonies very soon after graduating.

Many prosecutor offices also have specialized sections; sometimes rotating, sometimes not. So you may be in one section that handles only drugs, one that handles only domestic violence, etc.

EDIT: One good thing about law school is that it allows you to test out career alternatives. You will have two summers and four semesters (most schools give you credit for externships). You can spend some time working for a solo/small firm, other time at a DA's office, some time with the PD's office, etc.
Last edited by ggocat on Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:23 pm

ggocat wrote:Most "going solo" books and blogs seem to discourage starting a partnership, particularly if you are new to the game. There are other arrangements that can be made, such as office sharing and non-exclusive referrals, which give you most of the benefits of the partnership without the risk and drama. During your time as a law student or new lawyer, you may also encounter some attorneys who will act as mentors, and some state bar associations have formal mentoring programs and small firm start-up sections with plenty of resources.

Jay Foonberg's How to Start and Build a Law Practice is one of the better books on starting a practice (although it's geared more toward attorneys who are ready to make the plunge): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/159031 ... PESY14S089.

Just do some googling on the topic to see if starting a firm is for you.


Alright, it seems like any future information-gathering on the subject should require actual research outside of TLS.

However, this seems like the juiciest long-term option, and I don't want to delude myself: does anyone have stats on failure rates? Googling "startup law firm" "failure rate" was a flop.

I don't want to spend the next 8 years of my life preparing for a statistical longshot. I realize that statistics don't take all the particulars into consideration, but still.

My middle school plans to be in a rock band as an adult weren't entirely practical, but it didn't screw me over the way it would to choose a school and start a career with a pipe dream goal.

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Scallywaggums
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Re: Non-menial work, 8-5, ~$60K start: possible?

Postby Scallywaggums » Tue Jun 08, 2010 6:33 pm

ggocat wrote:Prosecutors have an incredible amount of flexibility, particularly after a few years. They do not prosecute people they think are innocent. They are under a legal obligation to "do justice," not convict people. A prosecutor has incredible power because he/she can prevent injustice rather than simply defend against it.


Holy cats! This actually seems to be a reasonably realistic route, straight out of graduation. "They do not prosecute people they think are innocent" was the clincher.

How much $ can public prosecutors make after, say, 10 years experience?

How much flexibility to PD's have in deciding who they defend?




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