What's up with South Florida and law firms?

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Aqualibrium
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby Aqualibrium » Fri Dec 10, 2010 3:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Fact is, 1st years are ridiculously over payed for their skill set, and 2200 hours comes with the territory. Period.


Whether they're overpaid or not is irrelevant. The pay becomes poor when associates have the opportunity to make either slightly less money with better hours, or the same money with better hours. The pay in biglaw becomes poor when the pay-out makes no economic sense compared to the other options associates have.

Moreover, the pay is definitely poor when associates bill 3,000 hours to be paid 167,500$. No economic sense in doing that when you can be paid the same amount billing less at a less prestigious firm.



Eye roll How many people are billing 3,000 hours?



Prestige points don't buy you much.



I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?

A&O
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby A&O » Fri Dec 10, 2010 3:05 pm

I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


"Exit options," I guess.

But we're also talking about law students here. Not the best example of people willing to sacrifice prestige.

I've always said that super-prestigious firms have a great asset on their side: The ability to persuade law students to work a lot more for the same money as what other firms will pay them :lol:

Anonymous User
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 10, 2010 3:44 pm

Aqualibrium wrote:I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


Because it makes you look like a fool to have gone through all the trouble of busting your butt to gain acceptance to [insert prestigious law school] only to go back home to work when you could probably have saved a lot of money by taking that big scholly your hometown law school was offering. No one likes to come home to the sound of your parents/family/etc saying "Well, why the hell did you suffer through three years of living in New Haven/Hyde Park/Morningside Heights only to come back home when you could have gone to UF/Miami/etc and done the same while saving a lot of money and being close to your family?" Plus, the point of attending [insert prestigious law school] is to use the prestige your degree confers upon you (whether deserved or not) as a stepping block. It's an arrogant thing to say, but working in a small market making less than NYC and working on less "big time" cases right out of law school makes [insert prestigious law school] graduates feel as if they've failed in a way.

This sort of thinking is arrogant and perhaps misguided, sure. But the pressures of appearing prestigious are more prevalent than one would hope.

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RVP11
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby RVP11 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 4:37 pm

I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


I think there are a few reasons:

a) Uncertainty about geography. A lot of 2Ls, especially those who've come straight through from UG, don't yet know where they want to settle permanently. So why not work in DC/NY and decide later?

b) Uncertainty about what you want to do. Not many people know what they want to do (government, PI, smaller firm, in-house), so why not go where you can "keep your options open?"

c) Desire to live in the big city, at least while you're young/single.

d) For many students at top schools, sense of self-worth is tied pretty closely to prestige (that's part of why they're at a top school).

e) I'm sure telling your friends you're working at Cravath is more fun than telling them you're working at Regional Mid-Size Firm They've Never Heard Of.

f) Exit options. If you want to work in BigGov, academia, try for a Circuit Court clerkship a few years out, etc. then going for prestige isn't a terrible idea. But I think a lot more people point to "exit options" as the reason they're going to a certain firm than really have it as their primary reason.

A&O
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby A&O » Fri Dec 10, 2010 4:48 pm

a) Uncertainty about geography. A lot of 2Ls, especially those who've come straight through from UG, don't yet know where they want to settle permanently. So why not work in DC/NY and decide later?


You can make 167,500$ while working in NY, but working for less hours. In fact, per AboveTheLaw, you can earn even more than that at a less prestigious firm (in Cahill). While your statement might make sense with respect to certain markets, it doesn't make sense with respect to choosing one firm over another in a specific one.

(b) Makes sense.

(c) Does not. You can live in a big city while still making substantially more, assuming you don't define "big city" as "NYC."

(d) and (e) feed right into the gimmick that prestigious law firms play on students to make them work more for the same money.

(f) is essentially the same point as (b).

Aqualibrium
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby Aqualibrium » Fri Dec 10, 2010 4:55 pm

I get you RVP. One question though: How many people actually have heard of Skadden, Cravath, etc...? You and I had this discussion before; the only people who care about the name or even know of it are those who have been conditioned by their surroundings to believe that working at a firm like that = true success. Is it really the proper measure of success though?

I know people that did extremely well at t14 law schools, and then went on to work at Jones Day, Sidley, Wilmer, and a few others. They all absolutely hated their lives. They paid off their loans and then escaped. In the end, what they were conditioned by the oci/prestige monster to believe = success ended up being a massive failure to them.

Like I said though, I get your point.

conn09
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby conn09 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 5:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


Because it makes you look like a fool to have gone through all the trouble of busting your butt to gain acceptance to [insert prestigious law school] only to go back home to work when you could probably have saved a lot of money by taking that big scholly your hometown law school was offering. No one likes to come home to the sound of your parents/family/etc saying "Well, why the hell did you suffer through three years of living in New Haven/Hyde Park/Morningside Heights only to come back home when you could have gone to UF/Miami/etc and done the same while saving a lot of money and being close to your family?" Plus, the point of attending [insert prestigious law school] is to use the prestige your degree confers upon you (whether deserved or not) as a stepping block. It's an arrogant thing to say, but working in a small market making less than NYC and working on less "big time" cases right out of law school makes [insert prestigious law school] graduates feel as if they've failed in a way.

This sort of thinking is arrogant and perhaps misguided, sure. But the pressures of appearing prestigious are more prevalent than one would hope.


Because getting those jobs is a lot more difficult than you think. The firms in Miami hire 1-3 SA's. What are the odds of you being ranked high enough in your class at Miami to even get an interview?

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98234872348
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby 98234872348 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:56 pm

conn09 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


Because it makes you look like a fool to have gone through all the trouble of busting your butt to gain acceptance to [insert prestigious law school] only to go back home to work when you could probably have saved a lot of money by taking that big scholly your hometown law school was offering. No one likes to come home to the sound of your parents/family/etc saying "Well, why the hell did you suffer through three years of living in New Haven/Hyde Park/Morningside Heights only to come back home when you could have gone to UF/Miami/etc and done the same while saving a lot of money and being close to your family?" Plus, the point of attending [insert prestigious law school] is to use the prestige your degree confers upon you (whether deserved or not) as a stepping block. It's an arrogant thing to say, but working in a small market making less than NYC and working on less "big time" cases right out of law school makes [insert prestigious law school] graduates feel as if they've failed in a way.

This sort of thinking is arrogant and perhaps misguided, sure. But the pressures of appearing prestigious are more prevalent than one would hope.


Because getting those jobs is a lot more difficult than you think. The firms in Miami hire 1-3 SA's. What are the odds of you being ranked high enough in your class at Miami to even get an interview?

Dude, if you get into UF with a full scholarship and a prestigious school with none, and your only goal is to get a job at a big law firm, go to the prestigious school. UF students do get jobs at these firms, but they are few and far between and are also at the top of their class (think top 10 students, not percent).

conn09
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby conn09 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 8:05 pm

mistergoft wrote:
conn09 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Aqualibrium wrote:I agree with that; so why worry about prestige at all. If these people's goal is to work at the sweatshop where they know they have little chance of making partner for a few years, and then lateral to a more reasonable, "less prestigious" job,why not just skip the first step and jump straight to the end?


Because it makes you look like a fool to have gone through all the trouble of busting your butt to gain acceptance to [insert prestigious law school] only to go back home to work when you could probably have saved a lot of money by taking that big scholly your hometown law school was offering. No one likes to come home to the sound of your parents/family/etc saying "Well, why the hell did you suffer through three years of living in New Haven/Hyde Park/Morningside Heights only to come back home when you could have gone to UF/Miami/etc and done the same while saving a lot of money and being close to your family?" Plus, the point of attending [insert prestigious law school] is to use the prestige your degree confers upon you (whether deserved or not) as a stepping block. It's an arrogant thing to say, but working in a small market making less than NYC and working on less "big time" cases right out of law school makes [insert prestigious law school] graduates feel as if they've failed in a way.

This sort of thinking is arrogant and perhaps misguided, sure. But the pressures of appearing prestigious are more prevalent than one would hope.


Because getting those jobs is a lot more difficult than you think. The firms in Miami hire 1-3 SA's. What are the odds of you being ranked high enough in your class at Miami to even get an interview?

Dude, if you get into UF with a full scholarship and a prestigious school with none, and your only goal is to get a job at a big law firm, go to the prestigious school. UF students do get jobs at these firms, but they are few and far between and are also at the top of their class (think top 10 students, not percent).



You said exactly what I said.

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98234872348
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby 98234872348 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 8:06 pm

conn09 wrote:You said exactly what I said.

Yeah, I was referring to the above poster, not you. Probably should have made that clear.

bigred87
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Re: What's up with South Florida and law firms?

Postby bigred87 » Sat Dec 11, 2010 5:39 am

As the original poster of this thread---> what are the chances of getting interviews? It's not AS hard to get an interview, if you're in the top 10-15 percent. Student @ UMiami and interviewed with all of these firms here in Miami during my 1L recruitment season/OCI, and they made the most random decisions (and yes, they do take summer associates from UMiami). I did not get callbacks from any, but instead landed a summer associate position in NY.

And the Miami BigLaw firms do NOT pay as much as people are saying on here...I think it's more in the range of $110-125k...

Bilzin-->$120k
Holland Knight-->125K
Carlton Fields-->$130k

and my original post was not about the lack of demand for legal services in Miami. Granted, this is not NY, DC or Chicago, and never will be. But it's not a po-dunk town either, and there are more companies headquartered here than Barcardi (think Burger King, Carnival Cruise Lines, tons and tons of international banks, etc.). Plus, even with the real estate market in the dumpster, for some reason, on every corner there seems to be yet another skyscraper, office tower, high-rise building going up, and or land being cleared and readied for another construction project. I don't get it, but I assume there are lawyers and firms working on those projects. And there have been lawyers and firms working on those projects for the past five years, when building and the skyline of Miami exploded. It's now like the second or third biggest skyline.

In fact, there seem to be a lot more regional, Florida only firms that do a lot of the business/legal work down here, and lot of these have been merging and growing, and my observation was that not enough BigLaw firms have set up shop in Miami... maybe that's the reason why these Florida only firms do so well and expand.

I don't know how attractive Miami is to young people, unless you are from the So. Florida area. I mean, it's a beautiful city to live in, and for those who don't appreciate the ethnic diversity of Miami, there's always Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, which is ethnically very different from Miami (mostly people form the northeast, Jewish, Italian...and mostly NOT senior citizen, esp. Broward Ft. lauderdale, which is very young). However, Miami itself is certainly not the place that has much in the way of culture, museums, different art, music and fashion scenes etc. It's pretty shallow and un-exciting, unless you're into expensive sports cars, strippers, living in glass/steel high rise,and not really the sort of place that attracts young, single lawyers or college graduates. I think that's it's biggest problem.




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