Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

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Anonymous User
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Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:44 am

You know how interviewers will say something like, we'll be making decisions in about a month (or 2 weeks or w/e), but let us know if you get another offer so we can speed hat along. Obvs it would be bad to lie about an offer just to find out sooner, but does the implicit fact that you don't have any other offers at this stage and over a period of several weeks make you seem less desirable or competitive? Or to a sinilar effect, might saying you have an offer make you seem more attractive (kind of like how a person always seems more attractive if someone else is chasing them, also, and it's flattering if that person prefers you over this alternative)?

mrloblaw
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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby mrloblaw » Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:48 am

I'm just going to stop you right there.

No. No. Repeat after me: "No."

luthersloan
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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby luthersloan » Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:53 am

It is also easier to pay back your loans if you steal money. Of course, that makes it neither right, legal, nor wise.

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IAFG
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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby IAFG » Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:57 am

What will you say when they ask what the firm is?

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby mrloblaw » Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:58 am

IAFG wrote:What will you say when they ask what the firm is?


WLRK, Baby!

c3pO4
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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby c3pO4 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:You know how interviewers will say something like, we'll be making decisions in about a month (or 2 weeks or w/e), but let us know if you get another offer so we can speed hat along. Obvs it would be bad to lie about an offer just to find out sooner, but does the implicit fact that you don't have any other offers at this stage and over a period of several weeks make you seem less desirable or competitive? Or to a sinilar effect, might saying you have an offer make you seem more attractive (kind of like how a person always seems more attractive if someone else is chasing them, also, and it's flattering if that person prefers you over this alternative)?


Sad thing is, your lack of ethics is shared by many lawyers out there. Hope you keep doing it, get caught, and get disbarred some day.

kahechsof
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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby kahechsof » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:38 pm

I'm a bit surprised by the reaction here. This is way better than some of the unethical stuff that has been plugged on this site.

I'd be more concerned about the possibility of getting caught in this instance, than the lie. I don't really see how you are hurting anyone. Of course, you are lying, and I happen to think lying is itself unethical.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby Unitas » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:47 pm

kahechsof wrote:I'm a bit surprised by the reaction here. This is way better than some of the unethical stuff that has been plugged on this site.

I'd be more concerned about the possibility of getting caught in this instance, than the lie. I don't really see how you are hurting anyone. Of course, you are lying, and I happen to think lying is itself unethical.


Situation: You are a plaintiff's lawyer and are suing two parties over the same issue for your plaintiff. Would you be willing to go up to one of them separately the night before trial and tell them the other defendant has offered to settle for X amount? If yes, then good luck in your career. If no, then that should answer your question for this very analogous issue.

At this point they expect you don't have an offer from OCI otherwise you would likely already be passed the 28 days. So be honest and hope for the best. This doesn't mean say "No, no offer here" it means say I am still waiting to hear back from a few firms I have applied and/or interviewed with.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:52 pm

I think the reason why people are thinking about lying is because of how tough the legal market is. When you put people in desperate situations, they are willing to go to desperate measures.

Kinda like how law schools shouldn't be "misrepresenting" school statistics eh?
If lawyers are suppose to have a "higher standard of ethics", then why are schools allowed to blatantly misrepresent school statistics?

Bottom line is, I would tell the OP that it isn't a good idea, but dont blast him about "ethics, morals" and hoping to see him get disbarred.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:54 pm

Unitas wrote:
kahechsof wrote:I'm a bit surprised by the reaction here. This is way better than some of the unethical stuff that has been plugged on this site.

I'd be more concerned about the possibility of getting caught in this instance, than the lie. I don't really see how you are hurting anyone. Of course, you are lying, and I happen to think lying is itself unethical.


Situation: You are a plaintiff's lawyer and are suing two parties over the same issue for your plaintiff. Would you be willing to go up to one of them separately the night before trial and tell them the other defendant has offered to settle for X amount? If yes, then good luck in your career. If no, then that should answer your question for this very analogous issue.

At this point they expect you don't have an offer from OCI otherwise you would likely already be passed the 28 days. So be honest and hope for the best. This doesn't mean say "No, no offer here" it means say I am still waiting to hear back from a few firms I have applied and/or interviewed with.


Kahechsof's point, however, wasn't for this situation to be extrapolated onto all situations in the legal profession. In fact, he even agrees that lying is unethical. More importantly, the distinction he made in his post was that no one is getting hurt in this scenario (saying it is a victimless crime however is hardly any justification, I know) -- which is important to address as it is, no matter how unjustified, a distinction. The lie doesn't up his chances as much as it gets him an answer sooner. The settlement scenario is completely different on this point.

disclaimer: OP should not lie here -- it is wrong and I know of some entertaining stories where a person did lie in similar situations and got royally screwed lol. Also, I doubt firms waste so much time as to consider whether you mentioned an offer or not. What if you did have another offer but it wasn't going to expire within 2 weeks at all and decided not to let them know? A firm will not make some decision off of this rather insignificant possibility.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby c3pO4 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:57 pm

It's not a "victimless crime." ITT liars justify lying. If you aren't a competitive candidate, and you lie about being one, and you wouldn't have otherwise gotten the job, but now you do get the job. Guess who you just screwed over? The OTHER PERSON who was going to get the job over you. By definition, in this situation, if you are considering lying to increase your advantage you are hurting the other candidates.

Edit: Just LOL at lying here doesn't increase your chances just gets you an answer sooner.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Oct 30, 2011 12:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think the reason why people are thinking about lying is because of how tough the legal market is. When you put people in desperate situations, they are willing to go to desperate measures.

Kinda like how law schools shouldn't be "misrepresenting" school statistics eh?
If lawyers are suppose to have a "higher standard of ethics", then why are schools allowed to blatantly misrepresent school statistics?

Bottom line is, I would tell the OP that it isn't a good idea, but dont blast him about "ethics, morals" and hoping to see him get disbarred.


Hello Mr. Hide Behind the Cloak of Anonymity:

While I agree that law schools misrepresenting school statistics is horrible, this seems like a completely separate issue. Heck, this is technically between OP and the firm (the law school is only tangentially related). Not that a related person A lying should somehow excuse a related person B's lies...a barely related person C lying should definitely not excuse the related person B's lies lol.

And once again, I agree with you in that I would also only tell OP lying here is a bad idea, but I don't quite see why some people shouldn't blast him about ethics and morals (at least not from your logic/argument).

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby thexfactor » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:00 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I think the reason why people are thinking about lying is because of how tough the legal market is. When you put people in desperate situations, they are willing to go to desperate measures.

Kinda like how law schools shouldn't be "misrepresenting" school statistics eh?
If lawyers are suppose to have a "higher standard of ethics", then why are schools allowed to blatantly misrepresent school statistics?

Bottom line is, I would tell the OP that it isn't a good idea, but dont blast him about "ethics, morals" and hoping to see him get disbarred.


Hello Mr. Hide Behind the Cloak of Anonymity:

While I agree that law schools misrepresenting school statistics is horrible, this seems like a completely separate issue. Heck, this is technically between OP and the firm (the law school is only tangentially related). Not that a related person A lying should somehow excuse a related person B's lies...a barely related person C lying should definitely not excuse the related person B's lies lol.

And once again, I agree with you in that I would also only tell OP lying here is a bad idea, but I don't quite see why some people shouldn't blast him about ethics and morals (at least not from your logic/argument).


sorry clicked wrong button.
It s a non material lie that he is telling. If schools can misrepresent more material things than this, I don't think lying about a non material thing like this is a big deal.

Coudln't you treat interviewing like a negotiation? It's not like he is lying about his credentials which are material to the decision of whether or not to hire someone.
Last edited by thexfactor on Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:01 pm

c3pO4 wrote:It's not a "victimless crime." ITT liars justify lying. If you aren't a competitive candidate, and you lie about being one, and you wouldn't have otherwise gotten the job, but now you do get the job. Guess who you just screwed over? The OTHER PERSON who was going to get the job over you. By definition, in this situation, if you are considering lying to increase your advantage you are hurting the other candidates.

Edit: Just LOL at lying here doesn't increase your chances just gets you an answer sooner.


Thank you for ignoring the actual point of my post and focusing more on an issue that I was addressing almost from a devil's advocate position. Also, realistically, I somewhat doubt that an offer will hinge on whether the firm hears you may have received an offer from some other unnamed firm (assuming you don't name the firm -- that is an even greater shitstorm of dumb).

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby Unitas » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:03 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
Unitas wrote:
kahechsof wrote:I'm a bit surprised by the reaction here. This is way better than some of the unethical stuff that has been plugged on this site.

I'd be more concerned about the possibility of getting caught in this instance, than the lie. I don't really see how you are hurting anyone. Of course, you are lying, and I happen to think lying is itself unethical.


Situation: You are a plaintiff's lawyer and are suing two parties over the same issue for your plaintiff. Would you be willing to go up to one of them separately the night before trial and tell them the other defendant has offered to settle for X amount? If yes, then good luck in your career. If no, then that should answer your question for this very analogous issue.

At this point they expect you don't have an offer from OCI otherwise you would likely already be passed the 28 days. So be honest and hope for the best. This doesn't mean say "No, no offer here" it means say I am still waiting to hear back from a few firms I have applied and/or interviewed with.


Kahechsof's point, however, wasn't for this situation to be extrapolated onto all situations in the legal profession. In fact, he even agrees that lying is unethical. More importantly, the distinction he made in his post was that no one is getting hurt in this scenario (saying it is a victimless crime however is hardly any justification, I know) -- which is important to address as it is, no matter how unjustified, a distinction. The lie doesn't up his chances as much as it gets him an answer sooner. The settlement scenario is completely different on this point.

disclaimer: OP should not lie here -- it is wrong and I know of some entertaining stories where a person did lie in similar situations and got royally screwed lol. Also, I doubt firms waste so much time as to consider whether you mentioned an offer or not. What if you did have another offer but it wasn't going to expire within 2 weeks at all and decided not to let them know? A firm will not make some decision off of this rather insignificant possibility.


I should have quoted the OP and not who I did quote, my bad.

But even given my quoting the wrong person there is no distinction, no one would get hurt in telling defendant A that defendant B offered to settle, it would then be up to defendant A to also settle at their own will but under pressure of one side settling - similar to here. No one is hurt in my example either except the plaintiff's lawyer if he gets caught.

And yes, op considers the lie as an advantage: "but does the implicit fact that you don't have any other offers at this stage and over a period of several weeks make you seem less desirable or competitive?" So the negative implication of this quote is that having an offer makes you seem more desirable or at least more desirable than someone without an offer. I also believe that having an offer makes you a more desirable candidate to a firm due to the fact someone else has already vetted you and liked you enough to extend an offer.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:09 pm

Unitas wrote:
I should have quoted the OP and not who I did quote, my bad.

But even given my quoting the wrong person there is no distinction, no one would get hurt in telling defendant A that defendant B offered to settle, it would then be up to defendant A to also settle at their own will but under pressure of one side settling - similar to here. No one is hurt in my example either except the plaintiff's lawyer if he gets caught.

And yes, op considers the lie as an advantage: "but does the implicit fact that you don't have any other offers at this stage and over a period of several weeks make you seem less desirable or competitive?" So the negative implication of this quote is that having an offer makes you seem more desirable or at least more desirable than someone without an offer. I also believe that having an offer makes you a more desirable candidate to a firm due to the fact someone else has already vetted you and liked you enough to extend an offer.


Couldn't the fact that defendant A settled come back to hurt defendant B? Wouldn't that be the added pressure of one side settling? Isn't it implicit in the notification of when a person lets firm A know that firm B offered them already that the person is most likely more interested in firm A? (or else why bother letting them know, outside of collecting cb acceptances lol)

Sure the OP feels not having an offer at this stage = disadvantage. I disagree w/ him. Even if you had an offer, you would not be required to let the firm know, especially if the deadlines were not coming up//in conflict. I know I didn't. Doubt a firm would actually make a decision on not hearing you had other firms interested in you.

note: here, not letting firm know != disadvantage, while it is more arguable that lying to a firm may be a slight advantage. I still feel, however, that that advantage, realistically speaking, would be marginally useful at best as I doubt a firm hinges its decision on you having received an unnamed firm's offer -- and furthermore, taking you over another person (and then not offering the other person a spot as well, even in these times of austerity) [assumption made: we're talking biglaw here]
Last edited by DoubleChecks on Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby kahechsof » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:11 pm

Oh, I agree that it ups your chances of getting the job. I was just thinking that it was not in a way that hurts anyone, since it should not matter to the firm that you have another offer.
I hear the point about the other guy who would have gotten the job. (but if they want only someone who has another offer, then that guy would have an offer anyway.)

I need to mull this some more.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:23 pm

kahechsof wrote:Oh, I agree that it ups your chances of getting the job. I was just thinking that it was not in a way that hurts anyone, since it should not matter to the firm that you have another offer.
I hear the point about the other guy who would have gotten the job. (but if they want only someone who has another offer, then that guy would have an offer anyway.)

Wtf... that doesn't make sense at all. If you think it ups his chances you have to think it matters on some level to the firm. You can't have one without the other.

kahechsof wrote:I need to mull this some more.

Yes. Yes you do.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby kahechsof » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:28 pm

birdlaw117 wrote:
kahechsof wrote:Oh, I agree that it ups your chances of getting the job. I was just thinking that it was not in a way that hurts anyone, since it should not matter to the firm that you have another offer.
I hear the point about the other guy who would have gotten the job. (but if they want only someone who has another offer, then that guy would have an offer anyway.)

Wtf... that doesn't make sense at all. If you think it ups his chances you have to think it matters on some level to the firm. You can't have one without the other.


Really?
I think it matters to the firm in a stupid manner.
Imagine you tell a guy who is thinking of buying your car that you have another offer. You lied- I think that is unethical. But did you harm him?

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby birdlaw117 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:30 pm

kahechsof wrote:
birdlaw117 wrote:
kahechsof wrote:Oh, I agree that it ups your chances of getting the job. I was just thinking that it was not in a way that hurts anyone, since it should not matter to the firm that you have another offer.
I hear the point about the other guy who would have gotten the job. (but if they want only someone who has another offer, then that guy would have an offer anyway.)

Wtf... that doesn't make sense at all. If you think it ups his chances you have to think it matters on some level to the firm. You can't have one without the other.


Really?
I think it matters to the firm in a stupid manner.
Imagine you tell a guy who is thinking of buying your car that you have another offer. You lied- I think that is unethical. But did you harm him?

That's not the point. The point is you're harming the other candidates, and that is unethical. That is, assuming that your job prospects are increased. I'm not convinced that it would increase your chances. But if we assume that it does increase your chances, someone else's chances must go down.

But my comment was directed at the "it increases your chances but the firm won't take it into account" aspect. If the firm won't take it into account your chances will be unaffected.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby kahechsof » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:43 pm

birdlaw117 wrote:
kahechsof wrote:
birdlaw117 wrote:
kahechsof wrote:Oh, I agree that it ups your chances of getting the job. I was just thinking that it was not in a way that hurts anyone, since it should not matter to the firm that you have another offer.
I hear the point about the other guy who would have gotten the job. (but if they want only someone who has another offer, then that guy would have an offer anyway.)

Wtf... that doesn't make sense at all. If you think it ups his chances you have to think it matters on some level to the firm. You can't have one without the other.


Really?
I think it matters to the firm in a stupid manner.
Imagine you tell a guy who is thinking of buying your car that you have another offer. You lied- I think that is unethical. But did you harm him?


But my comment was directed at the "it increases your chances but the firm won't take it into account" aspect. If the firm won't take it into account your chances will be unaffected.


Right. If I said that, it would make no sense. I meant that the firm will take it into account, but in a stupid way. And I'm not sure I care about how they will stupidly do things.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby PeanutHead » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:52 pm

As a general rule it's a great idea to lie in order to find employment.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby newyorker88 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:54 pm

Having another offer makes you more desirable to a firm but lying is not good.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby c3pO4 » Sun Oct 30, 2011 1:54 pm

Friends, the ethical problem here is brutally simple:

Whatever the reason to lie in this situation may be, that same reason is why lying is unethical.

If lying wouldn't help the situation, then you wouldn't lie. If you are lying, it's to gain an unethical advantage. The reason it's unethical is because you have to be dishonest in order to achieve this advantage.

Advantage achieved by dishonesty = unethical.

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Re: Is it ever a good idea to lie about having another offer?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Oct 30, 2011 2:02 pm

c3pO4 wrote:Friends, the ethical problem here is brutally simple:

Whatever the reason to lie in this situation may be, that same reason is why lying is unethical.

If lying wouldn't help the situation, then you wouldn't lie. If you are lying, it's to gain an unethical advantage. The reason it's unethical is because you have to be dishonest in order to achieve this advantage.

Advantage achieved by dishonesty = unethical.


But you're forgetting situations in where a person perceives a lie to be advantageous when in reality it is not. I am not saying that is the situation here (separate issue), but those do exist. Furthermore, has anyone in this thread argued that lying is ethical?




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