The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

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tacocabana
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby tacocabana » Fri Aug 30, 2013 3:52 pm

Cold e-mailing alums can also be surprisingly helpful.

This is same poster from above who is probably going to switch out of law completely. I've been cold-e-mailing alum who took circuitous routes to jobs I would be interested in doing, and contacting them for advice, and I've found some really phenomenally nice people who have been really helpful.

sparty99
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby sparty99 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Hi. I'm the guy who talked about getting the 35k/yr offer from a solo bankruptcy guy. The negatives were the low pay, would have to drive alot, work 50-70 hr per week, and requiring a 2-year commitment. I just received a call from his secretary and he is officially offering me the job on Sunday. I spoke with one of my professors about it, and she thinks that it's a great opportunity to get experience. I spoke with my gf (and her business-savvy parents) and they think I should hold out for something better when bar results come out. I don't know what to do. Thoughts?


That is shit pay. Say, "No." You will not commit to a job for $35,000 with a two year contract. You can get a job teaching for $35,000.

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a male human
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby a male human » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:26 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:
a male human wrote:I would take it ONLY IF it's your area of interest + you wouldn't mind working for free at the same job for the experience. Rather than get 35k for a 50-70-hour job, can you make it no pay at 30-40 hours? With the extra time you can make cash on the side and do other personal things.


Umm....what? You would rather take 0K and work 40 hours + part time work than take 35K and work 70 hours in the same job? Do you realize the chances of you getting a part time job for 30 hours a week that pays you 35K per year is close to zero, and if you did you would still end up breaking even with what is already proposed to him...Not sure what you were thinking here.

My bad. I probably meant to say minimum wage or something lower than 35k. I was thinking he could also get rid of the 2-year clause. It might be bad to be stuck in some job that gives you no experience or isn't going to work out otherwise. Also, I was thinking if he spends less time at that job, he can reach out to network and perhaps have a lateral opportunity down the line.

Again, it's only if he really wants to do bankruptcy. Otherwise, I wouldn't take it at all. Just my 2 cents, what my opinion is worth.

NYstate
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby NYstate » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:34 pm

SBL wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Hi. I'm the guy who talked about getting the 35k/yr offer from a solo bankruptcy guy. The negatives were the low pay, would have to drive alot, work 50-70 hr per week, and requiring a 2-year commitment. I just received a call from his secretary and he is officially offering me the job on Sunday. I spoke with one of my professors about it, and she thinks that it's a great opportunity to get experience. I spoke with my gf (and her business-savvy parents) and they think I should hold out for something better when bar results come out. I don't know what to do. Thoughts?

The pay is total shit but debtor side bk is one of the easiest things to go solo in and after two years you really will have the tools to do so. If you don't have any other options I'd seriously consider.


Do you have any other leads?
I just don't know if more jobs will open up after bar results. I would like to see what happens if you want or need to terminate the contract.

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crysmissmichelle
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby crysmissmichelle » Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:39 pm

My advice with a grain of salt, but if this guy is trying to stick it to you with the contract, plus such low pay. . .I'm imagining he won't be such a nice guy to work with or for. . . this would really worry me. Does your state follow ABA Model Rules where he cannot ask you to sign a no-compete? Have you seen his contract? Is it even allowed by ethical rules? (I do realize it may not be *exactly* the same thing, but he sounds a little sketchy with this. . .)

Aside: I am a 3L with no job offer, following this thread, but only taking advice, not typically commenting.

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20160810
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby 20160810 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 6:54 pm

NYstate wrote:
SBL wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Hi. I'm the guy who talked about getting the 35k/yr offer from a solo bankruptcy guy. The negatives were the low pay, would have to drive alot, work 50-70 hr per week, and requiring a 2-year commitment. I just received a call from his secretary and he is officially offering me the job on Sunday. I spoke with one of my professors about it, and she thinks that it's a great opportunity to get experience. I spoke with my gf (and her business-savvy parents) and they think I should hold out for something better when bar results come out. I don't know what to do. Thoughts?

The pay is total shit but debtor side bk is one of the easiest things to go solo in and after two years you really will have the tools to do so. If you don't have any other options I'd seriously consider.


Do you have any other leads?
I just don't know if more jobs will open up after bar results. I would like to see what happens if you want or need to terminate the contract.

Yea the more I think about it that 2 year contract seems ridiculous. You're not an indentured servant.

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kalvano
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby kalvano » Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:12 pm

70 hours a week for $35K is absurd, but if you've got nothing else, $35K is better than $0K. However, do not do it if he insists on a 2-year contract that could subject you to penalties for leaving early. He knows it's shit pay and a terrible job, and that's why he's trying to lock you in. He can't make you keep working but he can try and have some sort of early leave damages clause. He knows you'll keep looking and bail at the first better chance you get, and rightfully so.

Take the job if you've got nothing else, but do not sign a contract. If he wants to keep people working for him for two years, let him pay them a real salary.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Olive83 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 8:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Hi. I'm the guy who talked about getting the 35k/yr offer from a solo bankruptcy guy. The negatives were the low pay, would have to drive alot, work 50-70 hr per week, and requiring a 2-year commitment. I just received a call from his secretary and he is officially offering me the job on Sunday. I spoke with one of my professors about it, and she thinks that it's a great opportunity to get experience. I spoke with my gf (and her business-savvy parents) and they think I should hold out for something better when bar results come out. I don't know what to do. Thoughts?


My advice to you would be this: do not do this if you cannot do this without signing an agreement re: the two-year commitment.

I have experience with older attorneys who seem similar to this one. From my perspective, the two-year commitment is a huge red flag. If he wants to retain his associates the right way, this should be done through kind treatment, bonuses, good benefits, etc. If he needs you to sign something to stick around - watch out.

Plus, two years is just long enough to get pigeonholed.

If he took a look at you, spoke with you, liked you and your resume enough to make an offer and even enough to want to force you to stick around for two years - someone else will too.

Unfortunately, ITE, someone will sign on with him because, yes, $35k is better than nothing. So if you have no other choice but to make this money and make it ASAP, and you can't hang on for another job six months down the road, then you do need to do what is economically best for you. Even if he ends up being an overbearing asshole or there are other negatives to the job that you didn't foresee, you should weigh that against not being able to make rent or eat.

And, really, if your gut says this job will be fine, except for the low pay/long hours combination, and this guy seems nice and like he will actually teach you things (disclaimer: attorneys that operate as or similar to solos do NOT have time to appropriately train, so you may have to teach yourself how to practice law if he's too busy for you) or be a decent mentor, or if you think you'll get some great experience - by all means. At the end of the two years, perhaps you could even go to clerk for a bankruptcy judge.

But if your gut says this is fishy, this guy could end up being a jerk, he could throw you under the bus or push ridiculous expectations onto you + you can hold out without a paycheck for a bit longer - skip it.

Just my two cents :D

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 30, 2013 8:43 pm

I responded before to the 35k/two year contract dilemma, and I will mention my opinion again. Unless this guy wanted to screw you, I do not understand why he would push the contract?
I could have understood if he was willing to give you a larger wage, let's say 60, and he was like "I do not want to throw sixty down the drain so you can leave next year to another firm." But 35k is really on the low end if you also demand a contract.

Void
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Void » Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:02 pm

Just take the job and fucking bounce as soon as something better comes along. At that income you'll be judgment proof anyway.

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JCougar
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby JCougar » Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:55 pm

Had another interview today. Small firm, plaintiff side, but in my desired specialty area. I asked him about hours, and he said 50 billable per week. I was a bit stunned, and I think I could have misheard him, because I actually said "how many hours per week would I be putting in?" Maybe he just misspoke and meant 50 hours total. Even Biglaw only requires you to put in 40 billables/week. 50 billables probably translates into at least 70 hours/week.

I also get the impression that this job will pay around 40K. It's in a very affordable city, but 40K for more billable hours than biglaw is horrendously shitty. He did talk about giving me a cut of any business I bring in, but said the caseload right away may not give me much time for that. At least I'll probably pay close to zero taxes since at least 25% of my income will be going to student loan interest alone. I've already decided I'm not doing IBR, no matter what I get. I'm just going to live like a college student until I get my debt to a manageable level. There's no way I want the albatross of my loans hanging around my neck for 30 years.

But these are the kind of jobs people should be prepared to look for graduating at median, writing on to a journal, and getting published, from a school ranked not too far below the T14 (and probably including the bottom half of the T14 as well), with really good prior work experience.

Hopefully, 0Ls are taking note. I hope that other job calls me back...

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby JCougar » Fri Aug 30, 2013 9:59 pm

And it's not that there's anything wrong with my resume. I have an extremely strong resume for the area of law I want to get into. I'm getting interviews at most jobs in the area I apply to. I have another one scheduled next week.

So it's not that there are better jobs out there that I'm just not getting bites on. These are the best jobs that are even out there. I can't apply to better ones, because they don't exist. If you don't get a job out of OCI, you're going to have to work worse hours than biglaw for a quarter of the pay.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:01 pm

I realize this is your decision, but I would strongly suggest you sign up for IBR. There's nothing stopping you from making larger payments on IBR - you just don't have to. The thing is that if you don't sign up at the start of your repayment, at least as I understand it you can't join later, and there may be a time when you really want/need to lower those payments.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby JCougar » Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:16 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I realize this is your decision, but I would strongly suggest you sign up for IBR. There's nothing stopping you from making larger payments on IBR - you just don't have to. The thing is that if you don't sign up at the start of your repayment, at least as I understand it you can't join later, and there may be a time when you really want/need to lower those payments.


Thanks.

I was going to cross that bridge when I came to it, so I'll look into this.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Void » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:03 pm

PAYE + PSLF is the route I'm shooting for!

P.S. I just looked and I believe you can change your repayment plan at any time during the life of the loan, so you are not actually locked out of IBR/PAYE if you don't immediately elect them.
Last edited by Void on Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby TatteredDignity » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:18 pm

JCougar wrote:And it's not that there's anything wrong with my resume. I have an extremely strong resume for the area of law I want to get into. I'm getting interviews at most jobs in the area I apply to. I have another one scheduled next week.

So it's not that there are better jobs out there that I'm just not getting bites on. These are the best jobs that are even out there. I can't apply to better ones, because they don't exist. If you don't get a job out of OCI, you're going to have to work worse hours than biglaw for a quarter of the pay.


I won't say that you're completely wrong about the existence of non-biglaw jobs, but I don't think your depiction is completely accurate. There may not be postings for many other jobs, but lots of midlaw/boutique places hire quietly through connections. No one wants another lecture about networking, but there are jobs in the cracks and crevices out there if you know people who know people. Will those places be interested in a median student? Probably not. But that's a different issue.

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kalvano
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby kalvano » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:40 pm

Someone asked earlier why some of us are still considering or wanting to be lawyers.

There's a posting for a part-time attorney for a legal aid society here in a suburb of Dallas called Hope's Door that provides emergency legal help to domestic abuse victims. It's not a significant time investment, more of an as-needed basis.

I can't wait until I have a few years experience and can do that sort of thing. Even with not having a job and the stress that goes along with that, my life is pretty damn good. No one is beating the shit out of me on a regular basis. It would be nice to be able to help some people who aren't near as fortunate out. When I was volunteering at Legal Aid, there were just some broke-ass people that had been fucked over at every turn that just needed someone to help them out a bit. Working with those folks was probably the best I felt during law school.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Void » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:48 pm

Agreed. I roll my eyes every time I read "you could be a teacher/janitor/doorman for $X." If I were only interested in making money, I would have gone to business school where they teach classes all day long about how to make money. Believe it or not, some of us actually enjoy this legal crap.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby JCougar » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:07 am

TatteredDignity wrote:I won't say that you're completely wrong about the existence of non-biglaw jobs, but I don't think your depiction is completely accurate. There may not be postings for many other jobs, but lots of midlaw/boutique places hire quietly through connections. No one wants another lecture about networking, but there are jobs in the cracks and crevices out there if you know people who know people. Will those places be interested in a median student? Probably not. But that's a different issue.


I might not be in the 99th percentile grade-wise, but I'd be willing to bet that I'm in the 99th percentile networking-wise. I just pulled out a stack of about 200 business cards I've gotten over the last two years, because I've run out of jobs to apply to. Now, some of these people have said that they're willing to hire laterals, and some of them are at very good firms. But none have said they have positions open right now.

I hope I get proven wrong.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:11 am

I'm the poster who asked. I'm also a law student in the vale. I guess I was wondering if there was something I was missing in myself in comparison to the rest of you, which your responses indicate that yes, I am.

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JCougar
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby JCougar » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:20 am

JCougar wrote:
TatteredDignity wrote:I won't say that you're completely wrong about the existence of non-biglaw jobs, but I don't think your depiction is completely accurate. There may not be postings for many other jobs, but lots of midlaw/boutique places hire quietly through connections. No one wants another lecture about networking, but there are jobs in the cracks and crevices out there if you know people who know people. Will those places be interested in a median student? Probably not. But that's a different issue.


I might not be in the 99th percentile grade-wise, but I'd be willing to bet that I'm in the 99th percentile networking-wise. I just pulled out a stack of about 200 business cards I've gotten over the last two years, because I've run out of jobs to apply to. Now, some of these people have said that they're willing to hire laterals, and some of them are at very good firms. But none have said they have positions open right now.

I hope I get proven wrong.


Of course, it is in an area of law where the "nobody wants to pay a first year associate" mentality is kind of extreme, but there is a lot of lateral activity after 2-3 years, including from shitlaw as long as its decent experience. A number of big firms in my area have gone to only hiring laterals, or hiring more than 50% of their people as laterals. And the government agencies are on hiring freezes.

This actually makes more sense to me than the normal Biglaw hiring model, and I'd prefer this approach myself if I were a client. But it sucks right now, and I'm pretty much resigned to the fact that I'm going to have to bite a bullet or two for now.

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kalvano
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby kalvano » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:27 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm the poster who asked. I'm also a law student in the vale. I guess I was wondering if there was something I was missing in myself in comparison to the rest of you, which your responses indicate that yes, I am.


I really, really like being a lawyer. I want to make money at it, but I also really enjoy the law and the job. There's nothing at all wrong with not enjoying it and just wanting it to be a job and nothing more. I know plenty of good attorneys who aren't all that into the law. You're not missing anything, just a different outlook.

Although, if you find yourself wanting to maybe be enthused about the law again (or for the first time), once you get licensed and some experience, try volunteering at a Legal Aid or Hope's Door. I know around here, they take volunteers willing to to do simple cases pro bono. You'd be amazed at how different the perspective is between a made-up class hypo or exam, and when you actually put that knowledge and skill to work and make a fundamental difference in someone's life. It's really pretty cool to be able to help them out.

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okinawa
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby okinawa » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:39 am

It's also tough to define what "being a lawyer" is because it's not just one job. I hate going to court and actually don't enjoy adversarial situations very much at all. But I really like chatting with a client who I've talked to before, listening to his concerns, and then answering a few questions about them. For me, that's mostly what being a lawyer entails--being a concerned person who will listen to your problems and sympathize with you, offer some advice, and try and prevent future issues. Like a professional friend who also could probably get you fired if you are doing inappropriate things because I'm also your bosses' boss' professional friend too. I can't think of many jobs I would like better, to be honest.

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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:44 am

I'm gearing up to leave law, and there's a certain sense of, lol, did I really just waste all that time and money. I've actually done some pro bono work. It's nice to help them, but I don't really enjoy the process until the end (the victory). The rest of it feels like a chore. I do think there's a certain enthusiasm for this field that I'm just lacking. I know what it feels like to enjoy the work one does and the material one studies, and I haven't felt it at all in my entire law school experience. I was deeply troubled this past summer that this was going to be at least 3 of the years of my life after graduation (back when I thought I would get an offer) and seriously contemplated rejecting the offer, and so in that sense consider my no-offer something of a blessing in that now I feel free to just leave. But I hope, at least, this discussion, and the extent to which you don't relate to what I'm saying at all, does at least re-affirm your own desire to stay.

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kalvano
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby kalvano » Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:48 am

Not a thing wrong with that. If you don't like it, you don't like it. I hope you find a job that you do enjoy, in that case.




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