Clerking before biglaw

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glitched
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Clerking before biglaw

Postby glitched » Mon Feb 28, 2011 2:44 pm

Will clerking help you land a biglaw job at a top top firm? And if biglaw is your goal, is it even a good idea to spend time clerking or would it be better to hit the ground running right out of law school? Or is it that if you could get a clerking gig in the first place, you probably could get a biglaw job anyway? I'm just trying to learn more about all of this.

Thanks!

EDIT: This thread totally already exists. i believe a lock or something is in order. sorry :(

ibtl loll

edit2: i guess people are interested. lol
Last edited by glitched on Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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thesealocust
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby thesealocust » Mon Feb 28, 2011 2:48 pm

Almost all federal clerks worked for a firm their 2L summer and then go to work for a firm after the clerkship. Most firms arrange, explicitly or otherwise, to re-hire former summers after they complete a clerkship. Some look for other firms after the clerkship instead.

Firms pay 5-figure bonuses for incoming clerks and often start them at a higher salary. Clerkships only last for 1-2 years (1 being more common). They are also harder to get than most biglaw jobs.

Anonymous User
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:09 pm

What about federal clerks who DID NOT work in biglaw their 2L summer? Do you think that once they finish their clerkship they would have a shot at biglaw? Or, is it the general rule that in order to do biglaw (even if you are a federal clerk) you MUST have clerked your 2L summer with that respective firm or another firm on the same "prestige level"?

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A'nold
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby A'nold » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What about federal clerks who DID NOT work in biglaw their 2L summer? Do you think that once they finish their clerkship they would have a shot at biglaw? Or, is it the general rule that in order to do biglaw (even if you are a federal clerk) you MUST have clerked your 2L summer with that respective firm or another firm on the same "prestige level"?

This is the question I keep asking......

Younger Abstention
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Younger Abstention » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:16 pm

Firms often hire COA clerks, who did not previously summer with the firm, to work following completion of the clerkship. For district court clerks, this is far less common from what I understand.

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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:24 pm

Younger Abstention wrote:For district court clerks, this is far less common from what I understand.


It would suck major donkey b**** to be a federal district court clerk and not be able to get hired all because you did not clerk in biglaw your 2L summer.

Anonymous User
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:36 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
glitched wrote:Will clerking help you land a biglaw job at a top top firm? And if biglaw is your goal, is it even a good idea to spend time clerking or would it be better to hit the ground running right out of law school? Or is it that if you could get a clerking gig in the first place, you probably could get a biglaw job anyway? I'm just trying to learn more about all of this.

Thanks!

"[f]or those who want biglaw and [didn't] get it [as 2Ls], clerkships are rarely a back door. It happens sometimes, but . . . if you didn't have the credentials to get biglaw at 2L OCI, you probably don't have the ammo to get a clerkship that will make firms change their minds."


I understand that not having the credentials your 2L summer would probably bar you from getting into biglaw after you graduate even if you have a federal clerkship. That being said, what about people who simply did not want to do biglaw their 2L summer? For example, what if they were offered a better paying 2L summer gig with a large company? So are you saying that not doing biglaw your 2L summer is a TOTAL bar (exaggerating) from you being able to do biglaw right after graduation?

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A'nold
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby A'nold » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:38 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
glitched wrote:Will clerking help you land a biglaw job at a top top firm? And if biglaw is your goal, is it even a good idea to spend time clerking or would it be better to hit the ground running right out of law school? Or is it that if you could get a clerking gig in the first place, you probably could get a biglaw job anyway? I'm just trying to learn more about all of this.

Thanks!

This post misunderstands how biglaw and clerkship hiring operates. One gets (or doesn't get) a biglaw job through a summer associate (SA) program. The hiring for that is done at the beginning of 2L year, and offers for full-time, post-grad employment at the firms are made at the conclusion of the 2L summer. Clerkship hiring traditionally occurs during, or, more often, immediately after 2L summer. Some clerkship hiring occurs even later, for judges who prefer clerks with post-LS experience.

Thus, for the most part, firms never know whether you are clerking before they decide to hire you. There are a few very narrow exceptions, such as when firms try to hire clerks who did not work for them as SAs. As a poster above mentioned, this happens most frequently at the CoA level, although it does happen among district court and state supreme court clerks too. The thing is--and this is the key part--most of the people hired this way already had biglaw gigs. They're just changing where they will be working within biglaw. As has been said elsewhere before, "[f]or those who want biglaw and [didn't] get it [as 2Ls], clerkships are rarely a back door. It happens sometimes, but . . . if you didn't have the credentials to get biglaw at 2L OCI, you probably don't have the ammo to get a clerkship that will make firms change their minds." So, while it might suck to do a district court clerkship and not have biglaw as an option at the tail end, the truth is that if you didn't have biglaw going in, odds are you won't going out either.


Yes, but what about the people that DID have the numbers (easily) to get biglaw but did not participate in 2L OCI, thus never getting the chance to even apply to these firms?

What if you are the #1 student at, say, Notre Dame, are on LR, etc. but did not participate in OCI? This student can likely get a federal clerkship.

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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 28, 2011 3:41 pm

A'nold wrote:
G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
glitched wrote:Will clerking help you land a biglaw job at a top top firm? And if biglaw is your goal, is it even a good idea to spend time clerking or would it be better to hit the ground running right out of law school? Or is it that if you could get a clerking gig in the first place, you probably could get a biglaw job anyway? I'm just trying to learn more about all of this.

Thanks!

This post misunderstands how biglaw and clerkship hiring operates. One gets (or doesn't get) a biglaw job through a summer associate (SA) program. The hiring for that is done at the beginning of 2L year, and offers for full-time, post-grad employment at the firms are made at the conclusion of the 2L summer. Clerkship hiring traditionally occurs during, or, more often, immediately after 2L summer. Some clerkship hiring occurs even later, for judges who prefer clerks with post-LS experience.

Thus, for the most part, firms never know whether you are clerking before they decide to hire you. There are a few very narrow exceptions, such as when firms try to hire clerks who did not work for them as SAs. As a poster above mentioned, this happens most frequently at the CoA level, although it does happen among district court and state supreme court clerks too. The thing is--and this is the key part--most of the people hired this way already had biglaw gigs. They're just changing where they will be working within biglaw. As has been said elsewhere before, "[f]or those who want biglaw and [didn't] get it [as 2Ls], clerkships are rarely a back door. It happens sometimes, but . . . if you didn't have the credentials to get biglaw at 2L OCI, you probably don't have the ammo to get a clerkship that will make firms change their minds." So, while it might suck to do a district court clerkship and not have biglaw as an option at the tail end, the truth is that if you didn't have biglaw going in, odds are you won't going out either.


Yes, but what about the people that DID have the numbers (easily) to get biglaw but did not participate in 2L OCI, thus never getting the chance to even apply to these firms?

What if you are the #1 student at, say, Notre Dame, are on LR, etc. but did not participate in OCI? This student can likely get a federal clerkship.


YEAH!?!?! (Pumps fist in air like a Libyan protester)

Interested Observer
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Interested Observer » Mon Feb 28, 2011 4:57 pm

I can share some anecdotal experience.

I externed for a judge at the Central District.

I would routinely walk into the office and find letters from law firms (usually strong litigation boutiques like Keker & Van Nest) basically saying that they're interested in hiring clerks and would be happy to interview them.

I don't know if the big firms do this, but I wouldn't think it to be outside the realm of possibility.

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Aberzombie1892
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Mon Feb 28, 2011 5:38 pm

A'nold wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:What about federal clerks who DID NOT work in biglaw their 2L summer? Do you think that once they finish their clerkship they would have a shot at biglaw? Or, is it the general rule that in order to do biglaw (even if you are a federal clerk) you MUST have clerked your 2L summer with that respective firm or another firm on the same "prestige level"?

This is the question I keep asking......


Many big law firms will interview 3L's for a summer associateship during the summer between 3L and the beginning of a federal clerkship. However, I don't think that these firms will conduct the interviews through OCI - mass mailing would be the vehicle to use.

If the clerkship is with a state court, you need to look at smaller (but still high profile) firms.

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A'nold
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby A'nold » Mon Feb 28, 2011 6:00 pm

Thanks for the info guys. This sounds about right.

adude
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Re: Clerking before biglaw

Postby adude » Wed Mar 02, 2011 6:19 am

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
glitched wrote:Will clerking help you land a biglaw job at a top top firm? And if biglaw is your goal, is it even a good idea to spend time clerking or would it be better to hit the ground running right out of law school? Or is it that if you could get a clerking gig in the first place, you probably could get a biglaw job anyway? I'm just trying to learn more about all of this.

Thanks!

This post misunderstands how biglaw and clerkship hiring operates. One gets (or doesn't get) a biglaw job through a summer associate (SA) program. The hiring for that is done at the beginning of 2L year, and offers for full-time, post-grad employment at the firms are made at the conclusion of the 2L summer. Clerkship hiring traditionally occurs during, or, more often, immediately after 2L summer. Some clerkship hiring occurs even later, for judges who prefer clerks with post-LS experience.

Thus, for the most part, firms never know whether you are clerking before they decide to hire you. There are a few very narrow exceptions, such as when firms try to hire clerks who did not work for them as SAs. As a poster above mentioned, this happens most frequently at the CoA level, although it does happen among district court and state supreme court clerks too. The thing is--and this is the key part--most of the people hired this way already had biglaw gigs. They're just changing where they will be working within biglaw. As has been said elsewhere before, "[f]or those who want biglaw and [didn't] get it [as 2Ls], clerkships are rarely a back door. It happens sometimes, but . . . if you didn't have the credentials to get biglaw at 2L OCI, you probably don't have the ammo to get a clerkship that will make firms change their minds." So, while it might suck to do a district court clerkship and not have biglaw as an option at the tail end, the truth is that if you didn't have biglaw going in, odds are you won't going out either.


thanks for the clarification. was wondering this myself




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