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Martin34
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:28 pm

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Postby Martin34 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:42 pm

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Last edited by Martin34 on Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:44 pm

Martin34 wrote:I just subscribed to freecreditscore.com and ran my credit for the first time in my life... I was irresponsible with credit cards and bills all throughout undergrad and, needless to say, my score is quite low. I am spending the day today working to resolve the outstanding issues with my credit.

I am concerned about this because next week I have an interview with a federal magistrate judge for a one-year post-graduation clerkship. Do federal judges typically run credit checks as a part of their background check? I externed with a district court judge after my 1l year and there was no problem there... but he only ran a criminal background check.

Does anyone know whether federal judges typically check the credit of applicants? Thanks very much!


Heh, I'd be more worried about whatever implications it may have for the C&F evaluation with the board of bar examiners.

Pretty sure most employers run a credit check at some point, but unless you fall under some threshold that makes you ineligible for federal employment generally (dont even know whether such a threshold exists) the judge won't make his/her decision based on that.

Martin34
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:28 pm

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby Martin34 » Fri Oct 28, 2011 4:51 pm

Good point.. I had no idea that they checked credit as a part of C&F.

For the people on this board who have clerked for a federal judge in the past, do you remember if a credit check was part of the hiring process?

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

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:03 pm

Martin34 wrote:Good point.. I had no idea that they checked credit as a part of C&F.

For the people on this board who have clerked for a federal judge in the past, do you remember if a credit check was part of the hiring process?


I had to authorize one, but it was after I was hired.

CanadianWolf
Posts: 10439
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:54 pm

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:01 pm

Wouldn't this depend upon the preferences of the hiring judge ?

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

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:44 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Wouldn't this depend upon the preferences of the hiring judge ?


And on circuit rules, and, and, and.

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Julio_El_Chavo
Posts: 803
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:09 pm

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Fri Oct 28, 2011 11:10 pm

*is in the top .1% of intelligence in the US*
*can't maintain a good credit score*

BeenDidThat
Posts: 704
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:18 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby BeenDidThat » Mon Oct 31, 2011 2:17 am

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:*is in the top .1% of intelligence in the US*
*can't hasn't maintained a good credit score*

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MrKappus
Posts: 1685
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 2:46 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby MrKappus » Mon Oct 31, 2011 2:59 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:Heh, I'd be more worried about whatever implications it may have for the C&F evaluation with the board of bar examiners.


Will not matter.

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

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Mon Oct 31, 2011 10:43 am

MrKappus wrote:
ToTransferOrNot wrote:Heh, I'd be more worried about whatever implications it may have for the C&F evaluation with the board of bar examiners.


Will not matter.


A person I know - and I mean a person I actually know, who went through the process - was denied membership to the bar because of his prior issues with debt nonpayment. He was invited to try again next year. Talk about panic-inducing.

It probably won't matter, but it could. Credit issues are one of the biggest red flags for C&F. Don't try to tell people otherwise.

BeautifulSW
Posts: 582
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 11:52 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby BeautifulSW » Mon Oct 31, 2011 11:01 am

Every state that I am aware of includes a credit check as part of the character and fitness screening for the bar. There's a very good reason for this; private lawyers are required to keep client trust accounts and are authorized to hold essentially unlimited client funds but are not subject to audit or a bond requirement.

This isn't to say that being in debt by itself will keep the applicant out. A history of indebtedness, even bankruptcy, is not a bar so long as the indebtedness is not the result of financial irresponsibility. One's credit score isn't really an issue. One's payment history can be. Where the applicant's credit history does show a pattern of financial irresponsibility, the Bar may condition admission on evidence of a change of heart, so to speak, usually "pay as agreed" for six months or so. Keep in mind that bar examiners understand that new lawyers will be carrying large amounts of student loan debt and it is a serious matter to deprive the applicant of the ability to earn a living in his chosen profession.

I don't know whether federal clerks undergo a financial evaluation prior to appointment. I do know that applicants for higher level federal security clearances are evaluated. Here at the state level, if a lawyer applicant has a law license, we assume that the State Bar is satisfied and we make no inquiry.

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MrKappus
Posts: 1685
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 2:46 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby MrKappus » Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:04 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
MrKappus wrote:
ToTransferOrNot wrote:Heh, I'd be more worried about whatever implications it may have for the C&F evaluation with the board of bar examiners.


Will not matter.


A person I know - and I mean a person I actually know, who went through the process - was denied membership to the bar because of his prior issues with debt nonpayment. He was invited to try again next year. Talk about panic-inducing.

It probably won't matter, but it could. Credit issues are one of the biggest red flags for C&F. Don't try to tell people otherwise.


You're hilarious.

BeautifulSW
Posts: 582
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 11:52 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby BeautifulSW » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:30 am

No, he's right. Do the research; the cases are reported and out there. Failure to pay lawful debt is grounds for denial of admission to the bar.

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MrKappus
Posts: 1685
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 2:46 am

Re: credit check for federal judicial clerkship?

Postby MrKappus » Tue Nov 01, 2011 5:11 pm

BeautifulSW wrote:No, he's right. Do the research; the cases are reported and out there. Failure to pay lawful debt is grounds for denial of admission to the bar.


I did the research. Unpaid debt or financial obligation has to be substantial. PS Putting "lawful" in front of words makes them super-cereal. Good job.

NOTE: NOT LEGAL ADVICE. If you want to know if your debt's going to be a problem, ask a lawyer that deals with ethics issues.




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