Going Solo

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Cupidity
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Cupidity » Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:06 pm

You say "more people would be doing it" like half of all TTT grads aren't already.

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NinerFan
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Re: Going Solo

Postby NinerFan » Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:12 pm

Cupidity wrote:You say "more people would be doing it" like half of all TTT grads aren't already.


And you think they're happy to be doing that instead of the alternative of working in biglaw/midlaw/not solo law?

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gwuorbust
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Re: Going Solo

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:50 pm

NinerFan wrote:
Cupidity wrote:You say "more people would be doing it" like half of all TTT grads aren't already.


And you think they're happy to be doing that instead of the alternative of working in biglaw/midlaw/not solo law?


the problem with your statement is that you say "the alternative of biglaw/midlaw." For most TTT graduates, this is not an option. Many(most?) know this going in.

And to presume that everyone wants to work for a large firm is quite presumptuous.

Anonymous User
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:55 pm

yea i know plenty of kids in TTT and their goal from the beginning was to open up their own shop. in fact, many don't even know what "corporate law" really is. these kids haven't even heard of any firms in the vault 10 (maybe they of know of one or two). fact is, they were never gunning for biglaw in the first place.

buttonpusher
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Re: Going Solo

Postby buttonpusher » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:17 pm

Being a solo nowadays (as a newbie) is damn near impossible when you factor student loans into the equation. On top of that you have the intense over-saturation of shitlaw solos doing divorce, Ch 7 BK, DWI, slip n' fall ambulance chasing, etc. Just open up your local Yellow Pages and count the amount of established lawyers begging for this bottom-feeding garbage, and ask yourself if your town/county really has an unmet need for another solo shit- lawyer?

Using any baby-boomer aged solo as a means of comparison or predictor of your success as a solo is apples to oranges, as they got started when lawschool was dirt cheap and before Tom Cooley started opening lawschools on every streetcorner in America.

Shitlaw in general today is basically a part-time job. There isn't enough $$$ in shitlaw to pay anyone a decent salary and health benefits, and furthermore no reason to since the supply/demand metrics are so hopelessly out of whack. Here's typical shitlaw "running around in July in a suit" type of gig:

--LinkRemoved--

I myself was supplementing my teaching income by doing re-fi closings for Quicken Loans in the summer for the whopping fee of 150 per closing. I got about 3 a week and had to drive all over NJ to cover them, since Quicken hold the closing at borrower's home. So out of that 150 I also had to pay for gas, tolls, print the closing docs (which are 250 pages for a typical re-fi), pay for toner, call & schedule the closing, and then hope the borrowers didn't "forget" to be there since the "bust" fee was only $40.

I just wore shorts and a T-shirt since I had no incentive to give a shit what any of these clowns thought of me. But the funniest part of all is that Quicken got a new loan VP who decided to scrap using lawyers for re-fi and just send notaries instead. You could still get the work at the "notary rate" as a lawyer, but notaries only get $60 a closing, so it totally isn't worth doing for that price.

Solo shitlaw is a dying area anyway, as I pointed out in another thread. LLC Formation can be done online now via most state's websites, DWI is a joke, you can only get off maybe 0.00000001% of clients, wills/trusts=Legalzoom, real estate closings are DEAD in this terrible market, Ch 7 bankruptcy has intense price competition (and of course the thrill of chasing $$$ from people already piss broke), and so on. Trying to start a shitlaw solo operation after missing the Biglaw boat is just tossing good $$$ after bad. You're better off just giving up on law & going back to school to be a teacher, physical therapist, or some other area that actually has upward income growth and potential.

HTH

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Veyron
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Veyron » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:34 pm

NinerFan wrote:
Veyron wrote:
Yeah, I may never see a jury in big law, but give me that instead of running around in the summer heat in a suit making it from point A to point B for a couple of bucks.


Give me the thrill and agony of being a real lawyer anyday over the drudgery of being a highly paid filing clerk.


There's going to be a lot of thrills for people going solo right out of law school with no idea how to practice law, no experience, no connections, etc....

This thread makes it seem a bit too easy. If it was so easy, more people would be doing it.


Right. I'm not saying that its ideal to go from law school --> solo, but I wouldn't mind doing it after getting some training elsewhere. I'd probably like to have my own firm though with several attorneys under me to do the grunt-work eventually though.

03121202698008
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Re: Going Solo

Postby 03121202698008 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:41 pm

Veyron wrote:
NinerFan wrote:
Veyron wrote:
Yeah, I may never see a jury in big law, but give me that instead of running around in the summer heat in a suit making it from point A to point B for a couple of bucks.


Give me the thrill and agony of being a real lawyer anyday over the drudgery of being a highly paid filing clerk.


There's going to be a lot of thrills for people going solo right out of law school with no idea how to practice law, no experience, no connections, etc....

This thread makes it seem a bit too easy. If it was so easy, more people would be doing it.


Right. I'm not saying that its ideal to go from law school --> solo, but I wouldn't mind doing it after getting some training elsewhere. I'd probably like to have my own firm though with several attorneys under me to do the grunt-work eventually though.


I think the effective way to do this is to get training/experience and then break away with a few other attorneys from other practice areas...and a book of business willing to follow you.

psm11
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Re: Going Solo

Postby psm11 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:48 pm

This is very true and that is exactly what my uncle did. He graduate bottom 50 from Pitt law in the early 80's and got no offers from any of his summer jobs. He was a close friend of the guy who graduate either top 4 or 5 in the class and really badgered him into opening a practice with him. I think it took my uncle to agree to pay for the guys wedding before he would turn down the big law offers and go with him. 30 some years later my uncle and the guy are still partners and run a very successful personal injury firm in pgh. I talk to them about this all the time and while they say it is way harder to do what they do today, it is def still possible and can be much more rewarding, financially and personally, than big law. One thing my uncle tells me is that you have to be serious about opening up your own practice. Many people do it until another job comes along and most of those people fail. He told me from day one of law school he knew he could never deal with working for someone else and all the ass kissing and politics that went with a big law job. He says he never regretted his choice, although it took a lot sacrifice and consumed a lot of his time, because he feels he made way more money than he ever would have in big law and he also didn't have to spend every waking hour in the office.

buttonpusher
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Re: Going Solo

Postby buttonpusher » Sun Dec 11, 2011 2:51 pm

Right. I'm not saying that its ideal to go from law school --> solo, but I wouldn't mind doing it after getting some training elsewhere. I'd probably like to have my own firm though with several attorneys under me to do the grunt-work eventually though.



I'd like to be the first human to set foot on the planet Mars, but that doesn't mean it's likely to happen.

Here is the type of job most failed solos wash into:

--LinkRemoved--

Probably pays better than most shitlaw. Hell, it pays 100% more than the DOJ does!:

http://www.mainjustice.com/2011/07/18/d ... legal-aid/

God this website provides more laughs per minute than Saturday Night Live !!!!!!!!!

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Veyron
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Veyron » Sun Dec 11, 2011 3:02 pm

buttonpusher wrote:
Right. I'm not saying that its ideal to go from law school --> solo, but I wouldn't mind doing it after getting some training elsewhere. I'd probably like to have my own firm though with several attorneys under me to do the grunt-work eventually though.



I'd like to be the first human to set foot on the planet Mars, but that doesn't mean it's likely to happen.

Here is the type of job most failed solos wash into:

--LinkRemoved--

Probably pays better than most shitlaw. Hell, it pays 100% more than the DOJ does!:

http://www.mainjustice.com/2011/07/18/d ... legal-aid/

God this website provides more laughs per minute than Saturday Night Live !!!!!!!!!


I'm pretty sure that starting your own small firm is only considered strange, bizarre, and unattainable on this corner of the internets.

buttonpusher
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Re: Going Solo

Postby buttonpusher » Sun Dec 11, 2011 3:03 pm

This is very true and that is exactly what my uncle did. He graduate bottom 50 from Pitt law in the early 80's and got no offers from any of his summer jobs. He was a close friend of the guy who graduate either top 4 or 5 in the class and really badgered him into opening a practice with him. I think it took my uncle to agree to pay for the guys wedding before he would turn down the big law offers and go with him. 30 some years later my uncle and the guy are still partners and run a very successful personal injury firm in pgh. I talk to them about this all the time and while they say it is way harder to do what they do today, it is def still possible and can be much more rewarding, financially and personally, than big law. One thing my uncle tells me is that you have to be serious about opening up your own practice. Many people do it until another job comes along and most of those people fail. He told me from day one of law school he knew he could never deal with working for someone else and all the ass kissing and politics that went with a big law job. He says he never regretted his choice, although it took a lot sacrifice and consumed a lot of his time, because he feels he made way more money than he ever would have in big law and he also didn't have to spend every waking hour in the office.


ROTFL. Please let us know in 5 years how your first phone call to Allstate to settle a bulging lumbar disc at L-4 pans out:

Newbie Solo: "Hello, I'm a solo lawyer, wondering what the offer is on this spiffy tort case I just picked up? We have here all 4 elements of a tort here Mr. Adjuster: duty, breach, causation, and damages. Therefore, we are entitled to compensation for this inujury."

Allstate Adjuster: (after finished laughing hysterically and nearly choking to death on his coffee) "Kid, this isn't 1985. Allstate doesn't pay for those "good hands" TV commericials by forking over $$$ to fender bender plaintiffs. We have this file marked "no pay" just like the other 894,579 files in my system.

Newbie: "But there are damages here! I learned all about torts in law school and just rented a spiffy Regus mail-drop office to start up my new firm!

Allstrate Adjuster: "Kid, it's a no pay. You could bring your client's decapitated head into court and carry it up to the witness stand, and we'll still hold fast on our "no pay." We'll have Wilson Elser file 67,946 motions a day explaining to you in intricate detail why we are not now, or ever, giving you a dime for this case."

Newbie: "What if I prep for trial, do a great job, and you are found liable? You'll be sorry then you ever messed with Super Solo!"

Allstate: "Kid, this is a 15 K state minimum policy, so even if you win the most you'll see in attorney fees is 5 K. And just to get an expert MD to testify in court will run you 7500 bucks, which you need to pay him in cash upfront before his testimony. We have you by the balls, kid. Sorry, but thanks for the call, I needed a good laugh today."

Solo (begins weeping, looks up at law degree on wall and ponders suicide).

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Re: Going Solo

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 11, 2011 3:11 pm

--LinkRemoved--

this is cool.
I sort of know the young guy working for Halstrom. He sounded like he loves his job a lot.

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NinerFan
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Re: Going Solo

Postby NinerFan » Sun Dec 11, 2011 3:21 pm

Veyron wrote:
NinerFan wrote:
Veyron wrote:
Yeah, I may never see a jury in big law, but give me that instead of running around in the summer heat in a suit making it from point A to point B for a couple of bucks.


Give me the thrill and agony of being a real lawyer anyday over the drudgery of being a highly paid filing clerk.


There's going to be a lot of thrills for people going solo right out of law school with no idea how to practice law, no experience, no connections, etc....

This thread makes it seem a bit too easy. If it was so easy, more people would be doing it.


Right. I'm not saying that its ideal to go from law school --> solo, but I wouldn't mind doing it after getting some training elsewhere. I'd probably like to have my own firm though with several attorneys under me to do the grunt-work eventually though.


Sure. I don't mean to insult the solo profession, I just don't think it's very feasible to do right out of law school. If you work in a firm or something for awhile and learn how to be a lawyer, get some contacts, meet some mentors, etc, then it's much more realistic.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Going Solo

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Dec 11, 2011 4:43 pm

NinerFan wrote:
Sure. I don't mean to insult the solo profession, I just don't think it's very feasible to do right out of law school. If you work in a firm or something for awhile and learn how to be a lawyer, get some contacts, meet some mentors, etc, then it's much more realistic.


There are two flaws with your assumptions. (1) that you will make relevant connections and (2) that you will learn how to "be a lawyer."

In biglaw you are not going to make relevant connections. Most solo work is going to be working for real clients, not Fortune 500s. So if you are working on the Ford file, do you really think you are going to somehow end up connected many average joes? Nope. The connections you make in biglaw are going to be mostly irrelevant for solo work.

Also in biglaw the lawyering you learn is not the same as the lawyering for being a solo. It is not the rough and tumble of fighting other lawyers in litigation day-in and day-out. Only the senior attorney's at biglaw firms get significant court time.

now, if you were to work at a small-ish firm then you would probably make connections and learn how to be a "real lawyer." so working at a firm of between 5 and 30 lawyers is ideal if you want to start your own practice later on. Of course, since most firms of this size don't have set hiring policies, how you land one of these jobs is the real question...

That said, I do think starting a solo firm is possible right out of law school. But you can't just do it on a whim. You need to have a bullet-proof plan, including things like: client acquisition strategy, mentors, cash-reserves, side-job, etc.

buttonpusher
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Re: Going Solo

Postby buttonpusher » Sun Dec 11, 2011 5:06 pm

That said, I do think starting a solo firm is possible right out of law school. But you can't just do it on a whim. You need to have a bullet-proof plan, including things like: client acquisition strategy, mentors, cash-reserves, side-job, etc.


Trouble is, the likelihood of success is so remote as to be comical. Just about every area of the country is saturated beyond belief with shitlaw solos/small firms begging for consumer work. As a result, the prices for most legal services have plunged- hence the 150 a pop real estate closing and 795 flat fee bankruptcy, etc. So you try to make $$$ on volume, which is hard in law because everything is a paper-churning headache and the clients will badger you constantly with all sorts of phone calls and such. You can't spend half an hour on the phone explaining to Joe Schmoe that he can't keep using his credit card to buy crap while his Ch 7 petition is pending, etc. and then throw a fat .5 on the billing sheet like you can in Biglaw.

As I explained above, solos of the 1980s and 90s made their bread n' butter on personal injury, esp car accidents and such (the whiplash cases). But in the early 2000s the carriers stopped settling these cases and fighting everything to the death. It worked:

There is no greater poster child for insurance industry greed than Allstate. According to CEO Thomas Wilson, Allstate’s mission is clear: “our obligation is to earn a return for our shareholders.”9 Unfortunately, that dedication to shareholders has come at a price. According to investigations and documents Allstate was forced to make public, the company systematically placed profits over its own policyholders. The company that publicly touts its “good hands” approach privately instructs agents to employ a hardball “boxing gloves” strategy against its own policyholders.10

Allstate’s confrontational attitude towards its own policyholders was the brain child of consulting giant McKinsey & Co. in the mid-1990s.McKinsey was tasked with developing a way to boost Allstate’s bottom line.11 McKinsey recommended Allstate focus on reducing the amount of money it paid in claims, whether or not they were valid. When it adopted these recommendations, Allstate made a deliberate decision to start putting profits over policyholders.

The company essentially uses a combination of lowball offers and hardball litigation. When policyholders file a claim, they are often offered an unjustifiably low payment for their injuries, generated by Allstate using secretive claim-evaluation software called Colossus. Those that accept the lowballed settlements are treated with “good hands” but may be left with less money than they need to cover medical bills and lost wages. Those that do not settle frequently get the “boxing gloves”: an aggressive litigation strategy that aims to deny the claim at any cost. Former Allstate employees call it the “three Ds”: deny, delay, and defend. One particular powerpoint slide McKinsey prepared for Allstate featured an alligator and the caption “sit and wait”-emphasizing that delaying claims will increase the likelihood that the claimant gives up.12 According to former Allstate agent Shannon Kmatz, this would make claims “so expensive and so time consuming that lawyers would start refusing to help clients."


It worked. Call your local shitlaw ambulance chaser, tell him you have a bulging disc, and see how anxious he is to come sign up your case. All the other carrier followed Allstate's lead and mark almost every file a "no pay." They will lowball you even worse on good cases if they look you up in the diary and see you're a newbie solo shitlawyer from a TTT.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Going Solo

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Dec 11, 2011 5:52 pm

buttonpusher wrote:
That said, I do think starting a solo firm is possible right out of law school. But you can't just do it on a whim. You need to have a bullet-proof plan, including things like: client acquisition strategy, mentors, cash-reserves, side-job, etc.


Trouble is, the likelihood of success is so remote as to be comical. Just about every area of the country is saturated beyond belief with shitlaw solos/small firms begging for consumer work. As a result, the prices for most legal services have plunged- hence the 150 a pop real estate closing and 795 flat fee bankruptcy, etc. So you try to make $$$ on volume, which is hard in law because everything is a paper-churning headache and the clients will badger you constantly with all sorts of phone calls and such. You can't spend half an hour on the phone explaining to Joe Schmoe that he can't keep using his credit card to buy crap while his Ch 7 petition is pending, etc. and then throw a fat .5 on the billing sheet like you can in Biglaw.



Here is the thing. Running a law firm is no different from running a business. Yes, there are extra ethical issues to consider. Yes, you go before a judge. But ultimately, the key is to get revenues in excess of costs to a degree that is profitable.

If right out of law school you decide to open a pizza parlor out of desperation, but you have no plan, no marketing, no connection to supplier or promoters of your parlor..you are doomed to fail. If you have a bullet-proof plan, connections, marketing strategies, etc..then you have a chance of succeeding (you could still fail, but the chance is much lower).

The EXACT same thing applies to opening up your own law firm. If you start a shit business you will get shit results. Period. I don't care what industry you are in.

But if you have a plan to start a successful solo practice the chance of being successful is much higher. There are still people and companies out there that can pay for legal services. It comes down to finding them. You need to hit the ground running from day one, giving speeches to community groups, writing articles, going to endless number of networking events, etc. etc. Yeah, it won't be easy. But don't expect clients to be lining out her door if you sit in you mom's basement all day long posting on JD Underground.

BeautifulSW
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Re: Going Solo

Postby BeautifulSW » Sun Dec 11, 2011 5:58 pm

The enormous debt does make a difference. But not all of the country is as badly overlawyered as the Northeast. Arizona has many fewer lawyers per capita than most states and there is opportunity there for new small firms. There is room here in New Mexico as well if you are willing to set up shop in some of our less scenic places.

As to the Allstate adjuster, that depends a lot on how you handle yourself. Personally, I'd avoid plaintiffs' work altogether. A new lawyer cannot afford to take any contingent fee cases. You need the cash flow to keep the lights on.

The big complication for going into solo practice isn't the lack of practical experience out here; there are plenty of lawyers who will mentor. We haven't (yet) descended into the Hobbsian condition. The biggest problem is that the solo lawyer must not only practice law but must also run a small business. Don't underestimate the time and expense of doing the business side for yourself. If you let it go, it will eat you alive.

psm11
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Re: Going Solo

Postby psm11 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 6:50 pm

buttonpusher wrote:
This is very true and that is exactly what my uncle did. He graduate bottom 50 from Pitt law in the early 80's and got no offers from any of his summer jobs. He was a close friend of the guy who graduate either top 4 or 5 in the class and really badgered him into opening a practice with him. I think it took my uncle to agree to pay for the guys wedding before he would turn down the big law offers and go with him. 30 some years later my uncle and the guy are still partners and run a very successful personal injury firm in pgh. I talk to them about this all the time and while they say it is way harder to do what they do today, it is def still possible and can be much more rewarding, financially and personally, than big law. One thing my uncle tells me is that you have to be serious about opening up your own practice. Many people do it until another job comes along and most of those people fail. He told me from day one of law school he knew he could never deal with working for someone else and all the ass kissing and politics that went with a big law job. He says he never regretted his choice, although it took a lot sacrifice and consumed a lot of his time, because he feels he made way more money than he ever would have in big law and he also didn't have to spend every waking hour in the office.


ROTFL. Please let us know in 5 years how your first phone call to Allstate to settle a bulging lumbar disc at L-4 pans out:

Newbie Solo: "Hello, I'm a solo lawyer, wondering what the offer is on this spiffy tort case I just picked up? We have here all 4 elements of a tort here Mr. Adjuster: duty, breach, causation, and damages. Therefore, we are entitled to compensation for this inujury."

Allstate Adjuster: (after finished laughing hysterically and nearly choking to death on his coffee) "Kid, this isn't 1985. Allstate doesn't pay for those "good hands" TV commericials by forking over $$$ to fender bender plaintiffs. We have this file marked "no pay" just like the other 894,579 files in my system.

Newbie: "But there are damages here! I learned all about torts in law school and just rented a spiffy Regus mail-drop office to start up my new firm!

Allstrate Adjuster: "Kid, it's a no pay. You could bring your client's decapitated head into court and carry it up to the witness stand, and we'll still hold fast on our "no pay." We'll have Wilson Elser file 67,946 motions a day explaining to you in intricate detail why we are not now, or ever, giving you a dime for this case."

Newbie: "What if I prep for trial, do a great job, and you are found liable? You'll be sorry then you ever messed with Super Solo!"

Allstate: "Kid, this is a 15 K state minimum policy, so even if you win the most you'll see in attorney fees is 5 K. And just to get an expert MD to testify in court will run you 7500 bucks, which you need to pay him in cash upfront before his testimony. We have you by the balls, kid. Sorry, but thanks for the call, I needed a good laugh today."

Solo (begins weeping, looks up at law degree on wall and ponders suicide).

I never said I planned on going solo I was just sharing what he did--take it easy. He has already promised me a spot at his firm if I want it after law school. Going solo right out of law school would be pretty foolish with a job already lined up ITE. I was by no means saying what he did would happen to everyone. If anything he is probably the exception to the rule. I just shared it bc he was one of the few to do well right out of law school going on his own and is still doing very well today. I think going solo is just like going to law school--very risky. Some will do well, some will fall somewhere in the middle, and some will fail.

buttonpusher
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Re: Going Solo

Postby buttonpusher » Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:46 pm

Here is the thing. Running a law firm is no different from running a business. Yes, there are extra ethical issues to consider. Yes, you go before a judge. But ultimately, the key is to get revenues in excess of costs to a degree that is profitable.

If right out of law school you decide to open a pizza parlor out of desperation, but you have no plan, no marketing, no connection to supplier or promoters of your parlor..you are doomed to fail. If you have a bullet-proof plan, connections, marketing strategies, etc..then you have a chance of succeeding (you could still fail, but the chance is much lower).

The EXACT same thing applies to opening up your own law firm. If you start a shit business you will get shit results. Period. I don't care what industry you are in.

But if you have a plan to start a successful solo practice the chance of being successful is much higher. There are still people and companies out there that can pay for legal services. It comes down to finding them. You need to hit the ground running from day one, giving speeches to community groups, writing articles, going to endless number of networking events, etc. etc. Yeah, it won't be easy. But don't expect clients to be lining out her door if you sit in you mom's basement all day long posting on JD Underground.


Yes, but if you fail in a pizzeria you can file a Ch. 7 bankruptcy and discharge the debt, sell off the equipment, etc. Not so with a worthless law degree, which you are stuck paying for regardless of your ability to earn sufficient income to service said debt.

IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.

Also, by definition any person who missed Biglaw/OCI will be starting a consumer shitlaw operation, doing Ch 7 BK, residential real estate, and any other turds which come in the door. What's hilarious is that you aren't even close to qualified to even handle this garbage after paying 100K+ and pissing away 3 years in lawschool. You are literally a malpractice suit waiting to happen.

Other than the lowest price, there is no way to differentiate your "business." Can you cut and paste the boilerplate shitlaw forms better than the solo down the street? Unlike a restaurant, where you can have your own great recipes and such, shitlawyers all use the same exact forms and churn the identical cut n' paste shitpaper.

Also, forget about "mentors." The state bars try as hard as possible to stamp out newbie solos and make their lives miserable, such as NJ's new "bona fide office" rule:

http://myshingle.com/2010/03/articles/o ... -services/

As the comments to the article point out, the reason the bar drafted this rule was to present a roadblock to the hordes of unemployable losers coming out of TTT's like Seton Hall, Rutgers, etc and offering low prices by cutting overhead-i.e, not having an office. At the same time NJ also passed a draconian CLE rule that forces you to attend 12 of your 24 credits at live lectures, which cost 300 a pop. They also jacked up license fees & dues.

Who would want to enter a business where your own alleged "trade organization" actively works against your interests?

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AreJay711
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Re: Going Solo

Postby AreJay711 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:55 pm

buttonpusher wrote:
IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.


:roll:

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Veyron
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Veyron » Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:01 pm

AreJay711 wrote:
buttonpusher wrote:
IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.


:roll:


Can congress even change the repayment terms for loans already taken out?

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gwuorbust
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Re: Going Solo

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:04 pm

buttonpusher wrote:
Here is the thing. Running a law firm is no different from running a business. Yes, there are extra ethical issues to consider. Yes, you go before a judge. But ultimately, the key is to get revenues in excess of costs to a degree that is profitable.

If right out of law school you decide to open a pizza parlor out of desperation, but you have no plan, no marketing, no connection to supplier or promoters of your parlor..you are doomed to fail. If you have a bullet-proof plan, connections, marketing strategies, etc..then you have a chance of succeeding (you could still fail, but the chance is much lower).

The EXACT same thing applies to opening up your own law firm. If you start a shit business you will get shit results. Period. I don't care what industry you are in.

But if you have a plan to start a successful solo practice the chance of being successful is much higher. There are still people and companies out there that can pay for legal services. It comes down to finding them. You need to hit the ground running from day one, giving speeches to community groups, writing articles, going to endless number of networking events, etc. etc. Yeah, it won't be easy. But don't expect clients to be lining out her door if you sit in you mom's basement all day long posting on JD Underground.


Yes, but if you fail in a pizzeria you can file a Ch. 7 bankruptcy and discharge the debt, sell off the equipment, etc. Not so with a worthless law degree, which you are stuck paying for regardless of your ability to earn sufficient income to service said debt.

IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.

Also, by definition any person who missed Biglaw/OCI will be starting a consumer shitlaw operation, doing Ch 7 BK, residential real estate, and any other turds which come in the door. What's hilarious is that you aren't even close to qualified to even handle this garbage after paying 100K+ and pissing away 3 years in lawschool. You are literally a malpractice suit waiting to happen.

Other than the lowest price, there is no way to differentiate your "business." Can you cut and paste the boilerplate shitlaw forms better than the solo down the street? Unlike a restaurant, where you can have your own great recipes and such, shitlawyers all use the same exact forms and churn the identical cut n' paste shitpaper.


This is why you would (have? ) fail at starting a solo law practice. As a solo lawyer I would differentiate myself because I am me. I can tell my clients that I am going to charge them $200 an hour because there is only one of me. And that I will go in front of that jury and represent them to the best of my ability. I believe that I have a convincing personality and am a great public speaker (just as note, won several regional debate competitions, received about $5k in schlys from winning speech competitions, and am currently on the moot court team in LS). I am not trying to brag or gloat, I am just saying that what is going to differentiate ME to my clients is that I can speak articulately and hopefully convincingly in front of a jury. I am not just going to be rubber stamping forms.

but again, we get back to the pizza parlor analogy. I can differentiate myself with my public speaking. that is how I make my parlor special. but if you only try to compete on price then you are not going to be making much unless you have huge volumes (which requires a lot of advertising). Business 101.

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NinerFan
Posts: 482
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Re: Going Solo

Postby NinerFan » Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:16 pm

gwuorbust wrote:
buttonpusher wrote:
Here is the thing. Running a law firm is no different from running a business. Yes, there are extra ethical issues to consider. Yes, you go before a judge. But ultimately, the key is to get revenues in excess of costs to a degree that is profitable.

If right out of law school you decide to open a pizza parlor out of desperation, but you have no plan, no marketing, no connection to supplier or promoters of your parlor..you are doomed to fail. If you have a bullet-proof plan, connections, marketing strategies, etc..then you have a chance of succeeding (you could still fail, but the chance is much lower).

The EXACT same thing applies to opening up your own law firm. If you start a shit business you will get shit results. Period. I don't care what industry you are in.

But if you have a plan to start a successful solo practice the chance of being successful is much higher. There are still people and companies out there that can pay for legal services. It comes down to finding them. You need to hit the ground running from day one, giving speeches to community groups, writing articles, going to endless number of networking events, etc. etc. Yeah, it won't be easy. But don't expect clients to be lining out her door if you sit in you mom's basement all day long posting on JD Underground.


Yes, but if you fail in a pizzeria you can file a Ch. 7 bankruptcy and discharge the debt, sell off the equipment, etc. Not so with a worthless law degree, which you are stuck paying for regardless of your ability to earn sufficient income to service said debt.

IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.

Also, by definition any person who missed Biglaw/OCI will be starting a consumer shitlaw operation, doing Ch 7 BK, residential real estate, and any other turds which come in the door. What's hilarious is that you aren't even close to qualified to even handle this garbage after paying 100K+ and pissing away 3 years in lawschool. You are literally a malpractice suit waiting to happen.

Other than the lowest price, there is no way to differentiate your "business." Can you cut and paste the boilerplate shitlaw forms better than the solo down the street? Unlike a restaurant, where you can have your own great recipes and such, shitlawyers all use the same exact forms and churn the identical cut n' paste shitpaper.


This is why you would (have? ) fail at starting a solo law practice. As a solo lawyer I would differentiate myself because I am me. I can tell my clients that I am going to charge them $200 an hour because there is only one of me. And that I will go in front of that jury and represent them to the best of my ability. I believe that I have a convincing personality and am a great public speaker (just as note, won several regional debate competitions, received about $5k in schlys from winning speech competitions, and am currently on the moot court team in LS). I am not trying to brag or gloat, I am just saying that what is going to differentiate ME to my clients is that I can speak articulately and hopefully convincingly in front of a jury. I am not just going to be rubber stamping forms.

but again, we get back to the pizza parlor analogy. I can differentiate myself with my public speaking. that is how I make my parlor special. but if you only try to compete on price then you are not going to be making much unless you have huge volumes (which requires a lot of advertising). Business 101.


There's a lot of stuff you're going to have to do to even get before a jury. In my home state there are fewer than 50 jury trials all year. Can you do all of the stuff you have to do prior to seeing a jury? Because most of your cases aren't going to go all the way.

Edit: Well, for civil cases. Criminal is a different matter.

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Veyron
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Re: Going Solo

Postby Veyron » Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:54 pm

NinerFan wrote:
gwuorbust wrote:
buttonpusher wrote:
Here is the thing. Running a law firm is no different from running a business. Yes, there are extra ethical issues to consider. Yes, you go before a judge. But ultimately, the key is to get revenues in excess of costs to a degree that is profitable.

If right out of law school you decide to open a pizza parlor out of desperation, but you have no plan, no marketing, no connection to supplier or promoters of your parlor..you are doomed to fail. If you have a bullet-proof plan, connections, marketing strategies, etc..then you have a chance of succeeding (you could still fail, but the chance is much lower).

The EXACT same thing applies to opening up your own law firm. If you start a shit business you will get shit results. Period. I don't care what industry you are in.

But if you have a plan to start a successful solo practice the chance of being successful is much higher. There are still people and companies out there that can pay for legal services. It comes down to finding them. You need to hit the ground running from day one, giving speeches to community groups, writing articles, going to endless number of networking events, etc. etc. Yeah, it won't be easy. But don't expect clients to be lining out her door if you sit in you mom's basement all day long posting on JD Underground.


Yes, but if you fail in a pizzeria you can file a Ch. 7 bankruptcy and discharge the debt, sell off the equipment, etc. Not so with a worthless law degree, which you are stuck paying for regardless of your ability to earn sufficient income to service said debt.

IBR is a default. It's an admission that you made a poor choice (lawschool), cannot pay back the $$$, and as such the taxpayers have to step in & bail you out. Also with the GOP on the budget cutting warpath coupled with skyrocketing default rates, it's unlikely the program will be around much longer anyway.

Also, by definition any person who missed Biglaw/OCI will be starting a consumer shitlaw operation, doing Ch 7 BK, residential real estate, and any other turds which come in the door. What's hilarious is that you aren't even close to qualified to even handle this garbage after paying 100K+ and pissing away 3 years in lawschool. You are literally a malpractice suit waiting to happen.

Other than the lowest price, there is no way to differentiate your "business." Can you cut and paste the boilerplate shitlaw forms better than the solo down the street? Unlike a restaurant, where you can have your own great recipes and such, shitlawyers all use the same exact forms and churn the identical cut n' paste shitpaper.


This is why you would (have? ) fail at starting a solo law practice. As a solo lawyer I would differentiate myself because I am me. I can tell my clients that I am going to charge them $200 an hour because there is only one of me. And that I will go in front of that jury and represent them to the best of my ability. I believe that I have a convincing personality and am a great public speaker (just as note, won several regional debate competitions, received about $5k in schlys from winning speech competitions, and am currently on the moot court team in LS). I am not trying to brag or gloat, I am just saying that what is going to differentiate ME to my clients is that I can speak articulately and hopefully convincingly in front of a jury. I am not just going to be rubber stamping forms.

but again, we get back to the pizza parlor analogy. I can differentiate myself with my public speaking. that is how I make my parlor special. but if you only try to compete on price then you are not going to be making much unless you have huge volumes (which requires a lot of advertising). Business 101.


There's a lot of stuff you're going to have to do to even get before a jury. In my home state there are fewer than 50 jury trials all year. Can you do all of the stuff you have to do prior to seeing a jury? Because most of your cases aren't going to go all the way.

Edit: Well, for civil cases. Criminal is a different matter.


Yah, I was about to say ... WAY more than 50 criminal trials a year in any state. Criminal definitely seems like an important and fun component of solo practice.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Going Solo

Postby gwuorbust » Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:56 pm

NinerFan wrote:There's a lot of stuff you're going to have to do to even get before a jury. In my home state there are fewer than 50 jury trials all year. Can you do all of the stuff you have to do prior to seeing a jury? Because most of your cases aren't going to go all the way.

Edit: Well, for civil cases. Criminal is a different matter.


agreed, most civil cases probably won't go to trial and will settle before that. And as said, criminal work is very important. But my main point being that I will try to differentiate myself. That is important for every new solo.

And I do think I can do pretrial work. There are a ton of extremely detailed reference guides, and with mentors I think I can figure it out provided that I stay on top of all deadlines. It might take me a little longer at first, but there is going to be a learning curve whether I'm on my own or at a firm.

Right now I am trying to get in on a 5-15 person plaintiff firm. I am going to be doing a mailing for that in Feb (smaller firms don't make hiring decisions till later). But I think going solo is a legit back-up.




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