What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

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akaBlondie
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What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby akaBlondie » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:32 pm

I'm an American, but I love living in Europe. I don't speak any other language at a high proficiency. What do the fine people here on TLS know about getting a job in Europe? I'm most drawn to litigation, but am an 0L so that could all change. Looking for any and all info.

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fatduck
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby fatduck » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:33 pm

international law doesn't exist, sorry.

paulinaporizkova
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby paulinaporizkova » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:34 pm

fatduck: destroyer of dreams, est. 2010

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thesealocust
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby thesealocust » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:34 pm

fatduck wrote:international law doesn't exist, sorry.


While true, it has nothing to do with what OP asked. OP asked about practicing in Europe, which is a very achievable goal. I know classmates who summered or are starting full-time in Madrid, Paris, London, and Tokyo.

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fatduck
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby fatduck » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:36 pm

thesealocust wrote:
fatduck wrote:international law doesn't exist, sorry.


While true, it has nothing to do with what OP asked.


this is only true in a world where you miss the joke.

ChuckC
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby ChuckC » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:37 pm

I always see schools' websites bragging about graduates working in x number of states and y number of countries. What are the y folks doing then?

seriouslyinformative
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby seriouslyinformative » Tue Jun 14, 2011 9:38 pm

fatduck wrote:international law doesn't exist, sorry.


...and I'm the worst poster here. Nicely done.

From what I've seen, even with foreign language skills, the best chance a US-trained lawyer has of landing a job at a European practice is by working in a transactional practice. US-trained litigators working abroad are far more rare. First, if they are working abroad, they are usually working in international arbitration. Second, US-trained litigators abroad are rarer because, to practice a case before a court, one must also be locally licensed to practice law. This, for the most part, involves taking qualifying exams in the language of that country, and may even involve having to get an LLM from a law school in that country.

Transactional lawyers avoid this because they're able to do what they do without having to go to court.

In other words, if you're looking to globe-trot, litigation is probably not the best route to take.

Anonymous User
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:42 am

The European market isn't doing so hot, so I'm not sure what your odds are if you work for an American firm. You basically have to work in a transactional area (Capital Markets, Corporate). Better shot if you work in a Magic Circle firm than American firm, but people do get transferred to European offices of American firms for transactional work.

Basically NO shot at working abroad in litigation.

Not sure about European offices, but I know that a lot of other foreign offices (Asia and Latin America) work you even harder than New York.

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Holly Golightly
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby Holly Golightly » Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:36 am

According to my career adviser, if you are looking to do transactional work and do well in school, London is a possibility straight away. Apparently a lot of UK-based firms look to hire JDs, even for their UK offices. He also said that if you're willing to put in a few years in the U.S. and speak another language, other major European cities are also possible down the line, although you will likely have to put in a few years in a U.S. office (probably NY) first.

This is all second-hand and I don't actually know if it's true, considering I just finished 1L, so take everything I say with a grain of salt.

seriouslyinformative
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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby seriouslyinformative » Wed Jun 15, 2011 7:52 am

Germany is doing great.

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Re: What does TLS Know about Practicing in Europe?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 15, 2011 9:39 pm

akaBlondie wrote:I'm an American, but I love living in Europe. I don't speak any other language at a high proficiency. What do the fine people here on TLS know about getting a job in Europe? I'm most drawn to litigation, but am an 0L so that could all change. Looking for any and all info.


A relative of mine used to be the managing partner of a European office of an American based firm before he left the legal field. I remember asking him similar questions when I was making the transition back to the US and law school. He basically said that an American with a JD would only be useful in corporate. So a lot of what people are saying here is basically correct, the likelihood of you getting a job litigating is practically impossible.

Also as a side note I remember him saying that outside of London based firms, an American has almost zero chance of getting hired in a European office straight out of law school. Keep in mind that unless you have an EU passport, your chances at getting hired at an office on the Continent without language skills or experience is nearly impossible; you just wouldn't be an attractive candidate.




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