Clerkship bonuses

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Anonymous User
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Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 18, 2012 7:38 am

Which V100 firms/offices pay clerkship bonuses for SSCs? Do any pay for federal magistrates or bankruptcy judges if you're go into a non-bankruptcy practice?

TheProsecutor
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby TheProsecutor » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:15 am

Firms do not generally pay bonuses for State Supreme Court clerkships. They used to, but they do not anymore - at least not as a uniform policy. That being said, firms may pay a bonus to a State Supreme Court clerk on a case by case basis. Once you get into a firm, simply ask them if they pay a State Supreme Court bonus. If no, ask them to make an exception for you and give a pitch why your clerkship is similar in nature to a federal clerkship (emphasize a lot of writing responsibility, research responsibility, etc). They'll probably still say no, but it is worth a try.

As for magistrate judge clerkships, no firms that I am aware of pay the bonus. I am not sure about BK so I'll let others speak to that.

TheZoid
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby TheZoid » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:33 am

Just out of curiousity, what do SCOTUS clerks get for bonuses?

TheProsecutor
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby TheProsecutor » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:35 am

SCOTUS Clerks are being paid 250k at most firms. Several firms are paying 280k. That's just the bonus though. They often also get class credit for their clerkships and often come into firms as 3rd or 4th year associates making their total compensation just south of 500k.

TheZoid
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby TheZoid » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:40 am

Haha holy shit.

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:19 am

TheProsecutor wrote:Firms do not generally pay bonuses for State Supreme Court clerkships. They used to, but they do not anymore - at least not as a uniform policy. That being said, firms may pay a bonus to a State Supreme Court clerk on a case by case basis. Once you get into a firm, simply ask them if they pay a State Supreme Court bonus. If no, ask them to make an exception for you and give a pitch why your clerkship is similar in nature to a federal clerkship (emphasize a lot of writing responsibility, research responsibility, etc). They'll probably still say no, but it is worth a try.

As for magistrate judge clerkships, no firms that I am aware of pay the bonus. I am not sure about BK so I'll let others speak to that.


Most firms do pay the bonus to SSC clerks. They may not give the same hiring bump especially if you didn't work there as a 2L SA, but they still pay.

overandout
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby overandout » Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:16 pm

TheProsecutor wrote:SCOTUS Clerks are being paid 250k at most firms. Several firms are paying 280k. That's just the bonus though. They often also get class credit for their clerkships and often come into firms as 3rd or 4th year associates making their total compensation just south of 500k.


That doesn't make the compensation from the clerkship bonus just south of $500K, it makes it $280K + whatever the difference in pay is between 3rd year salary and bonus and 1st year salary and bonus. Which probably works out to be about $30K at most firms. So your added value from the clerkship is $310K. And then you are actually sacrificing the salary you would have had from two years working at the firm, so if clerks make about $50K a year, and they would have made $160K their first year and $170K their second year, plus bonus of, let's say, $17,500 over the two years. So that means they sacrificed $247.5K to make $310K. Disregarding time value of money, it's still a pretty solid boost... if you can get a SCOTUS clerkship, but nowhere near $500K. More like $60K all things considered. You'd lose value without the SCOTUS clerkship, and you shouldn't be doing these clerkships in the hopes of any immediate financial gain, because if you do, you don't understand math.

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sambeber
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby sambeber » Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:20 pm

overandout wrote:
TheProsecutor wrote:SCOTUS Clerks are being paid 250k at most firms. Several firms are paying 280k. That's just the bonus though. They often also get class credit for their clerkships and often come into firms as 3rd or 4th year associates making their total compensation just south of 500k.


That doesn't make the compensation from the clerkship bonus just south of $500K, it makes it $280K + whatever the difference in pay is between 3rd year salary and bonus and 1st year salary and bonus. Which probably works out to be about $30K at most firms. So your added value from the clerkship is $310K. And then you are actually sacrificing the salary you would have had from two years working at the firm, so if clerks make about $50K a year, and they would have made $160K their first year and $170K their second year, plus bonus of, let's say, $17,500 over the two years. So that means they sacrificed $247.5K to make $310K. Disregarding time value of money, it's still a pretty solid boost... if you can get a SCOTUS clerkship, but nowhere near $500K. More like $60K all things considered. You'd lose value without the SCOTUS clerkship, and you shouldn't be doing these clerkships in the hopes of any immediate financial gain, because if you do, you don't understand math.


Pretty sure TheProsecutor is just saying that total comp in their first year at a firm is just south of $500k.

overandout
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby overandout » Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:23 pm

sambeber wrote:
overandout wrote:
TheProsecutor wrote:SCOTUS Clerks are being paid 250k at most firms. Several firms are paying 280k. That's just the bonus though. They often also get class credit for their clerkships and often come into firms as 3rd or 4th year associates making their total compensation just south of 500k.


That doesn't make the compensation from the clerkship bonus just south of $500K, it makes it $280K + whatever the difference in pay is between 3rd year salary and bonus and 1st year salary and bonus. Which probably works out to be about $30K at most firms. So your added value from the clerkship is $310K. And then you are actually sacrificing the salary you would have had from two years working at the firm, so if clerks make about $50K a year, and they would have made $160K their first year and $170K their second year, plus bonus of, let's say, $17,500 over the two years. So that means they sacrificed $247.5K to make $310K. Disregarding time value of money, it's still a pretty solid boost... if you can get a SCOTUS clerkship, but nowhere near $500K. More like $60K all things considered. You'd lose value without the SCOTUS clerkship, and you shouldn't be doing these clerkships in the hopes of any immediate financial gain, because if you do, you don't understand math.


Pretty sure TheProsecutor is just saying that total comp in their first year at a firm is just south of $500k.


Yeah you're right, I guess I was just trying to add that it misses part of the story. Also the understand math thing wasn't directed at TheProsecutor, it was directed at the general public. My bad.

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boosk
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby boosk » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:56 pm

also, it's worth keeping in mind that most people burn out of biglaw within 2-5 yrs, so you might as well do it at a higher pay-grade imo.

augusta1985
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby augusta1985 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:14 pm

Does anyone know if class credit is awarded for fed magistrate clerkships? Would mag clerk who just finished a 2-year term come into a firm as a 3rd year associate?

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:00 pm

Simple answer is "it depends." Most competitive firms do pay automatic district court clerkship bonuses of 50K.

As for magistrates and SSC, it really depends on the firm/practice group and how bad they want you. But I think that it's safe to assume that, at least for magistrate judges, assume you won't receive a bonus. Keep in mind that it depends a lot on the type of work you do for the magistrate judge. Some magistrate judges do mostly social security, habeas petitions, and discrete motions -- this type of work will be less valuable to most biglaw firms that would pay bonuses.

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 19, 2012 6:22 pm

Back to one of the OP's original questions: Are firms giving clerkship bonuses for bankruptcy clerkships? Only firms with well-regarded bankruptcy practices?

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 20, 2012 11:48 am

Is the bonus $50k if you do a 2-year d ct. clerkship (major city)?

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gotmilk?
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby gotmilk? » Sat Jul 21, 2012 4:10 am

augusta1985 wrote:Does anyone know if class credit is awarded for fed magistrate clerkships? Would mag clerk who just finished a 2-year term come into a firm as a 3rd year associate?


My understanding is that most firms only give 1 year of credit for 2-year clerkships. Add to that the fact that it is a magistrate clerkship, which different firms may handle entirely differently, and I wouldn't be surprised if a 2-year mag clerk came in as a 1st or 2nd year. If your firm is supportive of clerkships, just ask what its policy is.

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gotmilk?
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby gotmilk? » Sat Jul 21, 2012 4:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:Is the bonus $50k if you do a 2-year d ct. clerkship (major city)?


I think the answer here is typically yes. Firms often pay $70k for two 1-year clerkships, but one 2-year clerkship usually gets $50k. Firms' policies sometimes differ on these things, though.

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 21, 2012 12:09 pm

FWIW, my firm does pay bonuses for SSC, and typically pays $70k for two one-year clerkships but only $50k for a single two-year clerkship.

TLSNYC
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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby TLSNYC » Sat Jul 21, 2012 12:31 pm

I'd actually be pretty interested to know what firms pay bonuses for state supreme court clerkships and if the clerkship has to be in the state where the firm's office is.

Paul Hastings does pay bonuses to SSC: http://www.paulhastings.com/careers_att ... lerks.aspx

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 21, 2012 12:38 pm

TLSNYC wrote:I'd actually be pretty interested to know what firms pay bonuses for state supreme court clerkships and if the clerkship has to be in the state where the firm's office is.

Paul Hastings does pay bonuses to SSC: http://www.paulhastings.com/careers_att ... lerks.aspx


I'm a state supreme clerk. It would probably be easier to make a list of the ones that don't give the bonus.

I surveyed about 50 firms websites in the Vault 100 and only 2-3 of them specified they were paying federal only, those were Quinn, Goodwin Procter, and one more which I forget. Every other firm said they would give bonuses to federal clerks and clerks in the highest state level appellate court (or they didn't say anything at all).

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Re: Clerkship bonuses

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 21, 2012 1:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
TLSNYC wrote:I'd actually be pretty interested to know what firms pay bonuses for state supreme court clerkships and if the clerkship has to be in the state where the firm's office is.

Paul Hastings does pay bonuses to SSC: http://www.paulhastings.com/careers_att ... lerks.aspx


I'm a state supreme clerk. It would probably be easier to make a list of the ones that don't give the bonus.

I surveyed about 50 firms websites in the Vault 100 and only 2-3 of them specified they were paying federal only, those were Quinn, Goodwin Procter, and one more which I forget. Every other firm said they would give bonuses to federal clerks and clerks in the highest state level appellate court (or they didn't say anything at all).


Goodwin gives SSC bonuses but on a case-by-case basis, I believe.




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