Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

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anteater85
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2011 10:55 pm

Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby anteater85 » Fri May 27, 2011 10:31 am

I am asking this out of curiousity, and not because I expect to get one even if these existed . . .

Do firms ever give SAs or new associates more than market or a signing bonus even if the student is straight out of law school (vs. a clerkship or other WE)? Specifically, if a student has more than one offer from a big firm for through either OCI or for a permanent position, do firms ever offer $ to sweeten the deal?

I guess my followup question the answer to the first set of questions is yes is: Is this only in major markets?

bdubs
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Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby bdubs » Fri May 27, 2011 10:39 am

I might be wrong, but I think this is the whole reason why salaries are lockstep (at top firms). Firms dislike bidding, it's more of a take what you get here, or get the same or very similar elsewhere.

If you're talking about firms that are smaller, or lower than lockstep, then perhaps there is room to strike a deal.

ran12
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Joined: Sun Oct 31, 2010 4:28 pm

Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby ran12 » Fri May 27, 2011 10:42 am

In the current legal market where there are less jobs than qualified JDs it wouldn't make sense for firms to bid for someone. There could be rare instances of this happening but the person would be easily replaceable.

ToTransferOrNot
Posts: 1928
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:45 am

Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Sun May 29, 2011 10:27 pm

Doesn't even happen for Supreme Court clerks (I mean, ignoring the crazy high signing bonuses for SCOTUS clerks, anyway).

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RVP11
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Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby RVP11 » Mon May 30, 2011 12:41 am

ran12 wrote:In the current legal market where there are less jobs than qualified JDs it wouldn't make sense for firms to bid for someone.


By that logic it doesn't make sense for them to pay $160,000, either.

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Moxie
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Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby Moxie » Mon May 30, 2011 9:48 am

anteater85 wrote:I am asking this out of curiousity, and not because I expect to get one even if these existed . . .

Do firms ever give SAs or new associates more than market or a signing bonus even if the student is straight out of law school (vs. a clerkship or other WE)? Specifically, if a student has more than one offer from a big firm for through either OCI or for a permanent position, do firms ever offer $ to sweeten the deal?

I guess my followup question the answer to the first set of questions is yes is: Is this only in major markets?


I can't say I've ever heard of this, although maybe for SCOTUS clerks. But if you're choosing between V10 firm 1 and V10 firm 2, neither one is doing to up your offer just to pull you away from the other.

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holdencaulfield
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Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby holdencaulfield » Mon May 30, 2011 9:55 am

I figured new big law associates would get signing bonuses. I'm going to a mid law firm at below market, but I was given a signing bonus. I'm using it to cover expenses between graduation and my starting date after the bar.

How do new big law associates bridge the gap without signing bonuses?

Sup Kid
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Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:49 pm

Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby Sup Kid » Mon May 30, 2011 10:06 am

holdencaulfield wrote:I figured new big law associates would get signing bonuses. I'm going to a mid law firm at below market, but I was given a signing bonus. I'm using it to cover expenses between graduation and my starting date after the bar.

How do new big law associates bridge the gap without signing bonuses?

Some firms pay for bar prep courses + give salary advance or stipend, and other firms give larger stipends, expecting that you use some of the money to live on and some of it for a bar prep course.

spondee
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Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:53 pm

Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby spondee » Mon May 30, 2011 11:18 am

Diversity fellowships and other firm scholarships can function this way.

Renzo
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Re: Competitive bids for SA positions or signing bonuses?

Postby Renzo » Mon May 30, 2011 11:28 am

Some firms do give signing bonuses or bar stipends, but they (like salary) are non-negotiable and lockstep. They're not given to lure students in (that's what 2L summer jobs are for), but to bridge the gap during bar prep, as other posters said.




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