Federal District Court or State Supreme Court?

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Which should I choose?

Federal District Court Judge
Chief Justice of State Supreme Court
Total votes: 43

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Re: Federal District Court or State Supreme Court?

Postby Veyron » Sun Mar 06, 2011 2:56 am

Adjudicator wrote:I'm sorry if this is hijacking a bit, but I have a question that is related to this topic. Obtaining a clerkship is a major goal of mine, but I realize that obtaining a prestigious federal clerkship is unlikely, coming out of the school that I will be attending.

However, I have a pretty good connection to one of the state supreme court justices in the state in which I want to practice (he was formerly law partners with my uncle in a small firm, and my cousin clerked for him.)

Is a state supreme court clerkship in the region that you're practicing in a pretty decent substitute for a prestigious federal gig?

Its not quite as good is D.Ct. but it ain't bad.


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Re: Federal District Court or State Supreme Court?

Postby keg411 » Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:32 am

CanadianWolf wrote:Appointed judges get their positions from one person and one political party

Federal judges get their positions the same way. Maybe not in your state, but the process in my state isn't too far off from the federal system. Judges have one seven year term and then are up for reappointment until the mandatory retirement age (and 99% of the time the governor grants it, no matter what the judge's or governor's political background is; when this didn't happen one time it was very very scandalous). Obviously there is some politics involved to get an appointment in the first place, but after that, it's really not much more than at the federal level.

Like I said, I think the reason to take federal district court is that it is a lot more practical because most people aren't going to do appellate level work. Not because OP would get black balled at certain firms because state judges are considered political. I've never heard of state judge work on any level HURTING someone at OCI.

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Re: Federal District Court or State Supreme Court?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Mar 06, 2011 3:35 pm

based on my time spending a summer at a state supreme ct, I would probably choose the fed dist ct. Besides what it looks like on your resume, you should consider the experience you'll get. A lot of state sup cts don't do much work at all. We all just sat around writing denials of cert for weeks on-end.

I'm sure some sup ct's put out enough opinions and hear enough cases that they have a lot of work/experience that you could get it on. But I get the feeling a district court would be much more useful in terms of learning law, which I've heard can be useful for law school classes, as well as post-school lawyerly things.

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Re: Federal District Court or State Supreme Court?

Postby dood » Sun Mar 06, 2011 4:43 pm

no one has mentioned one important factor u should consider: how u get along with the judge.

i.e. the judge i interned for had similar political beliefs and we shared several interests. thus i was lucky enough to become good friends with the judge. before OCI he wrote me a great letter of rec + personally called several partners at big firms. even if u dont become good friends, at minimum a judge could be a good future reference if he likes u.

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