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

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

Postby chruck » Sat Nov 23, 2013 4:13 pm

Has anyone considered getting a antimoney laundering certificate or a becoming a certified fraud examiner? Seems like anti money laundering compliance is "hot" right now.

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

Postby chrisbru » Sun Nov 24, 2013 12:43 pm

chruck wrote:Has anyone considered getting a antimoney laundering certificate or a becoming a certified fraud examiner? Seems like anti money laundering compliance is "hot" right now.


I didn't know this was a thing. Are jobs that available? I've never seen a posting for something like this.

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

Postby CaseClosed » Sun Nov 24, 2013 1:13 pm

chruck wrote:Has anyone considered getting a antimoney laundering certificate or a becoming a certified fraud examiner? Seems like anti money laundering compliance is "hot" right now.


http://www.acfe.com/become-cfe-qualifications.aspx

Never heard of this until now

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

Postby chrisbru » Sun Nov 24, 2013 2:15 pm

CaseClosed wrote:
chruck wrote:Has anyone considered getting a antimoney laundering certificate or a becoming a certified fraud examiner? Seems like anti money laundering compliance is "hot" right now.


http://www.acfe.com/become-cfe-qualifications.aspx

Never heard of this until now


Interesting...

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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 » Sun Nov 24, 2013 5:13 pm

For all you brothers and sisters still looking, maybe one of these will be new or helpful:


Associate Attorney SRIS Law Group, P.C. (Fairfax, VA)
Associate attorney needed for a law firm in Fairfax, VA. Attorney will handle criminal, traffic and family law cases. Full time employment. Must be licensed in Virginia. No experience required. Please e-mail your resume and writing sample to jobopening@srislawgroup.biz or visit us at http://srislawyer.com

Patent Associate in Mechanical Engineering - Houston
Cantor Colburn LLP, one of the largest full-service intellectual property law firms in the country, is seeking a patent associate to work in its Houston office. In recent rankings, Cantor Colburn was #7 in the country for issued U.S. patents and #24 for registered U.S. trademarks. The firms clients are among the leading companies in the United States and around the world, including Fortune 100 companies, privately held companies, select high-tech start-ups and universities.

The associate will be responsible for drafting and globally prosecuting patent applications in the mechanical arts for a major oil and gas industry client. Because the associate or agent will have regular client contact, he or she must be service-oriented. The successful candidate must have a degree in mechanical engineering. It is required to have at least three years of patent drafting experience and registration with the USPTO. Also, candidates must have drafted more than 30 patent applications and prosecuted applications both in the U.S. and overseas. Excellent academic credentials, writing skills, and communication skills are required. Competitive salary and benefits offered.

Please send resume, cover letter, and work sample to careers@cantorcolburn.com. No calls, please. Cantor Colburn LLP is an equal opportunity employer.


Senior Risk Manager Capital One (Plano, TX)

As a Senior Risk Manager, you’ll be responsible for working with business partners from our Financial Services team (Capital One Auto Finance and Home Loans) to identify and mitigate potential risks for the organization, review and confirm that current controls are functioning effectively, and develop and provide periodic reporting of results to drive awareness and action where results do not meet targeted thresholds. This position will be based in our Plano, TX offices.

Responsibilities
- Assist in the enhancement of Risk Management programs
- Provide leadership to the Management of cross FS/LOB Compliance initiatives
- Build and maintain strong relationships with key points on contact in the business, related risk offices, Corporate Compliance and Enterprise Risk functions
- Analyze transaction testing results

Basic Qualifications
- Bachelor’s degree or Military experience
- At least 2 years of experience in researching existing processes and monitoring risks associated with business processes
- At least 2 years of experience in client management – relationship building with internal and external partners

Preferred Qualifications
Master’s degree or Military experience
- Professional certification such as a CIA, CPA, CRCM, CISA or other recognized certification
- At least 2 years of consulting experience in a large national firm
- At least 8 years of experience in risk management, compliance or legal
Comments
For more information about this opportunity, please contact Tobias Moon at tobias.moon@capitalone.com or 972-372-7139.

https://capitalone.taleo.net/careersect ... =101430233


Litigation Associate Hunton & Williams (Dallas, TX)

The Dallas office of Hunton & Williams LLP seeks an associate to join the Litigation & Intellectual Property team. The ideal candidate will have up to four years of experience in litigation, as well as a strong academic record, exceptional analytical and writing skills and be a true team player. Applicants should demonstrate the capacity for success with a distinguished record of academic achievement and excellent written and verbal communication skills (law review or journal experience preferred). Judicial clerkship preferred but not required. Texas bar admission is preferred. Equal opportunity employer/drug-free workplace/E-Verify participant.

http://www.huntoncareers.com/attorneys/ ... b5f1d1521a


Attorney Rogaliner Law Firm (Dallas, TX)

Entry level associate. Texas Bar admission, excellent grades and writing skills required.

Background in healthcare preferred.

REQUIRED: JD, Texas license, excellent grades and writing skills.



Junior Patent Prosecution Associate Attorney Edmonds & Nolte, PC (Houston, TX)

Edmonds & Nolte, PC is seeking an entry-level patent attorney with a mechanical engineering background to draft and prosecute domestic and foreign patent applications, assist in client counseling and managing client patent portfolios, and draft and review opinions and IP-related agreements. The ideal candidate will possess the following qualifications: • Admission to the USPTO; • A BS degree and/or advanced degree in Mechanical Engineering; • A JD degree from an accredited university, and admission to a state bar, preferably, Texas; • Ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing; • Must be able to work independently in a fast paced environment, resolve complicated issues, and be able to manage multiple tasks on a daily basis, including meeting strict deadlines; and • Strong academic credentials. Such a candidate may expect to receive an aggressive, performance-based compensation package and comprehensive benefit package.



Bankruptcy and Litigation Associate Part-Time/Contract-Delaware Office Cole, Schotz, Meisel, Forman & Leonard, P.A. (Hackensack, N

Major law firm seeks a part-time/contract associate (2-3 days/week 3-6 months) with 0-2 years experience in bankruptcy with emphasis in litigation to join our Delaware
Office and be part of a team working on matters in Delaware, New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, Texas and elsewhere. Large and experienced department of 25+ full-time
bankruptcy attorneys with a sophisticated practice offering an extraordinary opportunity for challenging, interesting, and rewarding work. We seek a motivated individual devoted to meeting the highest standards of excellence and serving clients, and who wants to be part of an established and dynamic office and firm. Strong academic credentials and excellent oral and written communication, research and analytical skills are required. Delaware Bar required, additional Bar(s) New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, District of Columbia and/or Virginia a plus.
We offer an excellent compensation package and benefits program.

Attorney I (Austin) Texas State Securities Board (Austin, TX)

Classification Number 3501.

The responsibilities include detecting and investigating violations of the Texas Securities Act, identifying and analyzing evidence of such violations for administrative, civil, and criminal enforcement actions, and participating in trials and hearings. The work also involves analyzing securities offerings and associated records, including advertisements, offering documents, forms, filings and financial records. Performs other duties as assigned.

The minimum qualifications require graduation from accredited law school with J.D. Degree and a license to practice law in Texas. The applicant must be skilled in using computer software for word processing, creating and maintaining spreadsheets and searching the Internet.

Completed applications, along with the supplement, transcripts, and writing sample, should be sent to Human Resources, State Securities Board, P.O. Box 13167, Austin, Texas 78711-3167; faxed to 512-305-8327; or emailed to human.resources@ssb.state.tx.us .

To be considered for this position, you must submit (1) a completed standard state application, (2) a State Securities Board “Supplement To Application For Employment,” (3) a copy of your law school transcripts, (4) and a writing sample. Applications and supplement may be obtained at 208 E. 10th Street, 5th Floor, Austin, Texas 78701, requested by calling 512-305-8300, or downloaded from website at http://www.ssb.state.tx.us.


Attorney I (Houston, TX) Texas State Securities Board (Austin, TX)

Description

Classification Number 3501.
Job Posting 04-14

The responsibilities include detecting and investigating violations of the Texas Securities Act, identifying and analyzing evidence of such violations for administrative, civil, and criminal enforcement actions, and participating in trials and hearings.

The minimum qualifications require graduation from accredited law school with J.D. Degree and a license to practice law in Texas.

To be considered for this position, you must submit (1) a completed standard state application, (2) a State Securities Board "Supplement To Application For Employment," (3) a copy of your law school transcripts, (4) and a writing sample. Applications and supplement may be downloaded from website at http://www.ssb.state.tx.us. Completed applications, along with the supplement, transcripts, and writing sample, should be sent to Human Resources, State Securities Board, P.O. Box 13167, Austin, Texas 78711-3167; faxed to 512-305-8327; or emailed to human.resources@ssb.state.tx.us. Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of a standard state application. EOE.

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:02 pm

I've had 4 interviews in 2 weeks after months of nothing. Keep pushing guys, it really does seem easier once you're actually barred and can just come in and work.

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

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:06 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:I've had 4 interviews in 2 weeks after months of nothing. Keep pushing guys, it really does seem easier once you're actually barred and can just come in and work.


I've also had an uptick in interviews lately, none in biglaw though. No logic to where I'm getting interviews from, since several are from states and cities I've never even been to before in various practices.

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

Postby Dr. Review » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:09 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:I've had 4 interviews in 2 weeks after months of nothing. Keep pushing guys, it really does seem easier once you're actually barred and can just come in and work.

Is your SO working, Barbell?

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

Postby Bikeflip » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:22 pm

Barbell and anon: Are you all doing anything different now that you're barred? The most significant uptick I've noticed is that gubmint HR drones don't instantly delete my application for lack of an attorney number.

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:34 pm

Bikeflip wrote:Barbell and anon: Are you all doing anything different now that you're barred? The most significant uptick I've noticed is that gubmint HR drones don't instantly delete my application for lack of an attorney number.


I don't think I am doing anything different outside of maybe pushing for informational interviews a bit more than I used to. I just think any firm, especially a small one, will want someone who can start tomorrow if they like you, not someone who maybe passes the bar in a month.

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

Postby Bikeflip » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:39 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:
Bikeflip wrote:Barbell and anon: Are you all doing anything different now that you're barred? The most significant uptick I've noticed is that gubmint HR drones don't instantly delete my application for lack of an attorney number.


I don't think I am doing anything different outside of maybe pushing for informational interviews a bit more than I used to. I just think any firm, especially a small one, will want someone who can start tomorrow if they like you, not someone who maybe passes the bar in a month.



Cool. I'm going to more networking events, and I've noticed that more people want to help me now that I'm on the other side of the bar. Hopefully it' just a numbers game.

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

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 25, 2013 2:40 pm

My firm is interviewing an unemployed grad tomorrow who was recommended to us by a client of ours. If it goes well enough, we may be creating a position for this person. Just a reminder that if you have someone willing to go to bat for you, it can make magic happen.

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

Postby chrisbru » Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:10 pm

Anyone thought about going solo? My buddy and I are thinking about starting a practice. He's done some serious legwork talking to attorneys in the area about referrals of potential cases that can't afford the $300/hr rates but could afford flat fee or closer to $100/hr rates.

gfunk01
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby gfunk01 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:29 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:
Bikeflip wrote:Barbell and anon: Are you all doing anything different now that you're barred? The most significant uptick I've noticed is that gubmint HR drones don't instantly delete my application for lack of an attorney number.


I don't think I am doing anything different outside of maybe pushing for informational interviews a bit more than I used to. I just think any firm, especially a small one, will want someone who can start tomorrow if they like you, not someone who maybe passes the bar in a month.


Anon here. Prolly should do that less. I changed the info on my resume to say i'm admitted and can select that option on the application forms, regardless if govt or private. I can't say how much difference it makes since some of the interviews I've gotten are in states where I am not admitted and would have to take another bar exam. These interviews have also been for advertisements looking for one to x years exp, some in practices I currently am not involved in, and I've only be out of law school for little more than half a year working in a postgraduate school fellowship.

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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 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:53 pm

chrisbru wrote:Anyone thought about going solo? My buddy and I are thinking about starting a practice. He's done some serious legwork talking to attorneys in the area about referrals of potential cases that can't afford the $300/hr rates but could afford flat fee or closer to $100/hr rates.

I've done some side work as a patent agent with a client of my own, and it does look interesting on a resume. The caviat is that these clients tend to be less sophisticated than a large client (mostly individuals), and they will also try to bargain a lot. Expect to get low-balling clients, but what can you do until you have enough experience and cred until you are able to refer clients to someone else? Overall, I think it's a good idea if you can support yourself. Not sure what firms will think if you are solo for TOO long -- you'll be expensive but not know how to work in a firm culture.

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:14 pm

I toyed around with the solo idea back when I was a 3L and thought about moving to an entirely different market and did some research on it as well as met with solos in the area to talk about it. Its not that it "can't" work, but most of the info I got involved the following hurdles that solos told me are going to be very difficult to overcome:

1.) If your dad is giving you 50K to play around with and you wanna solo with thats cool, but thats unlikely. More likely is the fact that you have no money and cannot invest anything in your very own business. Thus, because you are close to broke and don't have a job you decide to "double down" and start a solo firm. While you can cut corners nearly everywhere, any firm is going to need at least SOME startup money. How are you going to afford an office? Are you going to advertise and if so what kind or for how long? An office can't be bare bones so while you can cheap out on furniture you still need some. How about utility bills? Clients simply won't take you seriously if you at least don't have an office so while you can do the whole "We can just meet at your house" thing with a laptop and cellphone you're already setting up for failure.

2.) You don't know what the hell you are doing. Malpractice insurance is dirt cheap for recent grads cause the insurance company assumes you won't land any big case anyway but still, it'll cost you something, and you may not have that "something". But forget paying for malpractice, the larger problem is your reputation. In this industry you have 2 things, your skills and your reputation and once you lose one of those your career is over (think about this, when I heard this quote and really thought about it I realize just how much sense that makes). Also, while a happy client may tell 1-2 people and unhappy client is going to tell 20. If you have a very good mentor that is willing to take a LOT of calls about even the most basic stuff that you don't know how to do then it can work, bu otherwise you're kinda screwed.

3.) Bills. Not the firm ones, your own. While you get this thing set up and ready you may get a client or two and do some stuff for a couple of thousand bucks. Thats awesome but a couple of grand ain't gonna pay all your bills for months and months. You have no book of business, no repeat clients and no steady stream of referrals. You wont even know what to do at your office half the time cause there won't be anything TO do. How are bills getting paid during that time? Who knows. Starting your firm with a partner? Cool, now everything gets split in 2 so you need double the clients that you already don't have.

4.) Collection. Getting clients is awesome, but in this business you're not really ever guaranteed payment. An average solo receives 70% of his fees per year, that means 30% of the money you thought you had you won't be getting without lengthy small claims court appearances (assuming you can even find your client to serve, which if you do criminal law you won't). There are also these awesome clients we called "judgment-proof" meaning all of their assets are under someone else's name or under an LLC and no their own so you basically cannot get anything from them and they have a ton of technicalities with how they get their salaries so you can't wage garnish either (I've dealt with one client like this at a firm I worked at during 3L. You'll spend tens of hours before you finally realize you won't be getting your money ever).

There are many other problems that you may face but the above are the main ones that I have researched and spoke to solos about. Really anyone "can" do it, but for me anyway, too many things have to go perfectly in your favor for it to work out so I scrapped the idea. If you are interested in this route because you can't find anything and are determined, I think the best way is to find an office share with a senior attorney who will give you free office space, Lexis, utilities in exchange for 10-15 hours of work month/wee/whatever. This sets you up with zero overhead, practice doing work so you actually understand what you're doing, a presentable firm office and most importantly a mentor in the office next door who can help you out and refer clients. Good luck if you wanna go this route and PM me if you want, I have a LOT of info on this stuff to consider, some books to read and plenty of blogs/sites to visit.

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

Postby chrisbru » Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:28 pm

I have good mentors in the area, an office with phone/internet/furniture/shared conference rooms in a good location close to the court house is $600/month, and I'd absolutely do court-appointed stuff to make sure there are at least some clients coming in the door.

Really, I'm not worried about getting clients or being able to afford to live. I'm mostly worried about the malpractice/reputation stuff you mentioned. That's kind of scary.

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:38 pm

chrisbru wrote:I have good mentors in the area, an office with phone/internet/furniture/shared conference rooms in a good location close to the court house is $600/month, and I'd absolutely do court-appointed stuff to make sure there are at least some clients coming in the door.

Really, I'm not worried about getting clients or being able to afford to live. I'm mostly worried about the malpractice/reputation stuff you mentioned. That's kind of scary.


You'd probably be the first solo to ever say that. Idk about your market, but the court appointed stuff in major markets is so dry (especially for recent grads that aren't even allowed to take the heavy felony-type stuff) that you'd get more clients just begging on the street. The appointed list is also very buddy-buddy so typically the guy in charge just sends the cases to his friends unless they don't want them (verbatim what the guy in charge of the court appointed list in Montgomery County, PA said to me). Knowing people who control that list is huge.

The reputation stuff is definitely a big deal, but if you have mentors that are seriously willing to coach you then you can get by without messing up too bad between the mentors and spending hours and hours looking up how to do basic stuff online. I personally worried about being realistic on clients much more than messing up.

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typ3
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby typ3 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 5:54 pm

Failure rate for solos is pretty high.

To be honest if you're doing solo the best model is running a mill, divorce / bankruptcy / personal injury / debt relief / social security disability and cross selling services, but even this model has had most of the margins cut out.

Since you have a finance degree and a JD Chris you're better off going to be a solo in wealth management / financial planning etc or getting into trust / wealth management at a bank. At least you can solicit people directly in that field and it's easier to sell people to give you money to make them money than a direct loss like legal bills. The big advantage too is that you can socialize and talk to people which a lot of law grads can't, plus if you get people decent returns you can build your book of business. It's not like people get run over by a truck every single day in law nor do people commit torts that people are willing to sue over, but people buy and move money every second.

Also as a solo as the person above me noted you have to constantly worry about getting people to buy your services since there isn't recurring revenue in law like other businesses. It sucks to sit in an office that is silent waiting for the phone to ring. The bar rules are written to keep new lawyers from competing in the game by barring solicitation. So, it can get pretty depressing pretty fast :/

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

Postby Gorki » Mon Nov 25, 2013 6:56 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:I toyed around with the solo idea back when I was a 3L and thought about moving to an entirely different market and did some research on it as well as met with solos in the area to talk about it. Its not that it "can't" work, but most of the info I got involved the following hurdles that solos told me are going to be very difficult to overcome:

1.) If your dad is giving you 50K to play around with and you wanna solo with thats cool, but thats unlikely. More likely is the fact that you have no money and cannot invest anything in your very own business. Thus, because you are close to broke and don't have a job you decide to "double down" and start a solo firm. While you can cut corners nearly everywhere, any firm is going to need at least SOME startup money. How are you going to afford an office? Are you going to advertise and if so what kind or for how long? An office can't be bare bones so while you can cheap out on furniture you still need some. How about utility bills? Clients simply won't take you seriously if you at least don't have an office so while you can do the whole "We can just meet at your house" thing with a laptop and cellphone you're already setting up for failure.

2.) You don't know what the hell you are doing. Malpractice insurance is dirt cheap for recent grads cause the insurance company assumes you won't land any big case anyway but still, it'll cost you something, and you may not have that "something". But forget paying for malpractice, the larger problem is your reputation. In this industry you have 2 things, your skills and your reputation and once you lose one of those your career is over (think about this, when I heard this quote and really thought about it I realize just how much sense that makes). Also, while a happy client may tell 1-2 people and unhappy client is going to tell 20. If you have a very good mentor that is willing to take a LOT of calls about even the most basic stuff that you don't know how to do then it can work, bu otherwise you're kinda screwed.

3.) Bills. Not the firm ones, your own. While you get this thing set up and ready you may get a client or two and do some stuff for a couple of thousand bucks. Thats awesome but a couple of grand ain't gonna pay all your bills for months and months. You have no book of business, no repeat clients and no steady stream of referrals. You wont even know what to do at your office half the time cause there won't be anything TO do. How are bills getting paid during that time? Who knows. Starting your firm with a partner? Cool, now everything gets split in 2 so you need double the clients that you already don't have.

4.) Collection. Getting clients is awesome, but in this business you're not really ever guaranteed payment. An average solo receives 70% of his fees per year, that means 30% of the money you thought you had you won't be getting without lengthy small claims court appearances (assuming you can even find your client to serve, which if you do criminal law you won't). There are also these awesome clients we called "judgment-proof" meaning all of their assets are under someone else's name or under an LLC and no their own so you basically cannot get anything from them and they have a ton of technicalities with how they get their salaries so you can't wage garnish either (I've dealt with one client like this at a firm I worked at during 3L. You'll spend tens of hours before you finally realize you won't be getting your money ever).

There are many other problems that you may face but the above are the main ones that I have researched and spoke to solos about. Really anyone "can" do it, but for me anyway, too many things have to go perfectly in your favor for it to work out so I scrapped the idea. If you are interested in this route because you can't find anything and are determined, I think the best way is to find an office share with a senior attorney who will give you free office space, Lexis, utilities in exchange for 10-15 hours of work month/wee/whatever. This sets you up with zero overhead, practice doing work so you actually understand what you're doing, a presentable firm office and most importantly a mentor in the office next door who can help you out and refer clients. Good luck if you wanna go this route and PM me if you want, I have a LOT of info on this stuff to consider, some books to read and plenty of blogs/sites to visit.


+ 1 to all of this.

Another thing I might add is to basically do a google search of what you want to do (e.g., "wills trusts Tampa") and just see what comes up. For the stuff I have "expertise" in from my job there are about 3-5 pages of AdWords exploiters and/or small firms that have boss web development.

So that means all your clients have to be word of mouth, which depending on your market is gonna suck. You will need to put $ down to start the solo process, and really you want to do flatrate stuff with the cash up front. It is ridiculous how many first or second year solos I know from LS who continuously get burned and work $500-$2000 of billable work for free b/c they keep trusting their "clients" to actually pay.

(All my advice here is based on living in oversaturated legal market w/4 schools churning out grads and at least 3-4 other schools feeding more grads into my market)

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typ3
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Re: The Vale of Tears (3L Job Hunting) (No advice for 0/1/2Ls)

Postby typ3 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:01 pm

Gorki wrote:
BarbellDreams wrote:I toyed around with the solo idea back when I was a 3L and thought about moving to an entirely different market and did some research on it as well as met with solos in the area to talk about it. Its not that it "can't" work, but most of the info I got involved the following hurdles that solos told me are going to be very difficult to overcome:

1.) If your dad is giving you 50K to play around with and you wanna solo with thats cool, but thats unlikely. More likely is the fact that you have no money and cannot invest anything in your very own business. Thus, because you are close to broke and don't have a job you decide to "double down" and start a solo firm. While you can cut corners nearly everywhere, any firm is going to need at least SOME startup money. How are you going to afford an office? Are you going to advertise and if so what kind or for how long? An office can't be bare bones so while you can cheap out on furniture you still need some. How about utility bills? Clients simply won't take you seriously if you at least don't have an office so while you can do the whole "We can just meet at your house" thing with a laptop and cellphone you're already setting up for failure.

2.) You don't know what the hell you are doing. Malpractice insurance is dirt cheap for recent grads cause the insurance company assumes you won't land any big case anyway but still, it'll cost you something, and you may not have that "something". But forget paying for malpractice, the larger problem is your reputation. In this industry you have 2 things, your skills and your reputation and once you lose one of those your career is over (think about this, when I heard this quote and really thought about it I realize just how much sense that makes). Also, while a happy client may tell 1-2 people and unhappy client is going to tell 20. If you have a very good mentor that is willing to take a LOT of calls about even the most basic stuff that you don't know how to do then it can work, bu otherwise you're kinda screwed.

3.) Bills. Not the firm ones, your own. While you get this thing set up and ready you may get a client or two and do some stuff for a couple of thousand bucks. Thats awesome but a couple of grand ain't gonna pay all your bills for months and months. You have no book of business, no repeat clients and no steady stream of referrals. You wont even know what to do at your office half the time cause there won't be anything TO do. How are bills getting paid during that time? Who knows. Starting your firm with a partner? Cool, now everything gets split in 2 so you need double the clients that you already don't have.

4.) Collection. Getting clients is awesome, but in this business you're not really ever guaranteed payment. An average solo receives 70% of his fees per year, that means 30% of the money you thought you had you won't be getting without lengthy small claims court appearances (assuming you can even find your client to serve, which if you do criminal law you won't). There are also these awesome clients we called "judgment-proof" meaning all of their assets are under someone else's name or under an LLC and no their own so you basically cannot get anything from them and they have a ton of technicalities with how they get their salaries so you can't wage garnish either (I've dealt with one client like this at a firm I worked at during 3L. You'll spend tens of hours before you finally realize you won't be getting your money ever).

There are many other problems that you may face but the above are the main ones that I have researched and spoke to solos about. Really anyone "can" do it, but for me anyway, too many things have to go perfectly in your favor for it to work out so I scrapped the idea. If you are interested in this route because you can't find anything and are determined, I think the best way is to find an office share with a senior attorney who will give you free office space, Lexis, utilities in exchange for 10-15 hours of work month/wee/whatever. This sets you up with zero overhead, practice doing work so you actually understand what you're doing, a presentable firm office and most importantly a mentor in the office next door who can help you out and refer clients. Good luck if you wanna go this route and PM me if you want, I have a LOT of info on this stuff to consider, some books to read and plenty of blogs/sites to visit.


+ 1 to all of this.

Another thing I might add is to basically do a google search of what you want to do (e.g., "wills trusts Tampa") and just see what comes up. For the stuff I have "expertise" in from my job there are about 3-5 pages of AdWords exploiters and/or small firms that have boss web development.

So that means all your clients have to be word of mouth, which depending on your market is gonna suck. You will need to put $ down to start the solo process, and really you want to do flatrate stuff with the cash up front. It is ridiculous how many first or second year solos I know from LS who continuously get burned and work $500-$2000 of billable work for free b/c they keep trusting their "clients" to actually pay.

(All my advice here is based on living in oversaturated legal market w/4 schools churning out grads and at least 3-4 other schools feeding more grads into my market)


It's the same in every market unless you're doing contingency work. Also American plaintiff personal injury is the most expensive advertising of any industry in the world. And to be successful as a solo you need to advertise a lot to do volume work, unless you're a connected blue blood in which case your career choice is ancillary. Even in my small home market 165k, 220k metro solos spend upwards of 50-60k a year on advertising which is well below the yellow page book peak in the early 90's but still a ton to compete against. Also, solos that have been in the game for a long time are pretty shrewd.


Also, Chris have you looked at Cambridge in Fairfield? They might have openings, I know someone for our class got hired this last week in legal and they said they were hiring more people, although I don't know in what capacity. https://www.cir2.com/Public/PublicSite/

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:19 pm

I actually forgot to add my favorite solo story I got from a solo who is 4 years in and somewhat successful. He had a plaintiff side civil litigation case when he came out of law school that he filed. Drafted up his complaint, triple checked it, asked some mentors, was really excited. Then he learned that a midsized law firm was the defendant's counsel. The mid size firm's mindset was basically this: Oh, you're a fresh grad trying to sue our client as a solo with no skills and no money? Cool, lets play. Here is 10,000 pages of discovery that we know you don't have the staff or the time to review by yourself. Good luck. Oh, and while we're at it, here is a list of our 5 expert witnesses that we will be paying 10K/each to. We know that you don't know shit about experts and we also know you don't have the cash to even hire ONE expert to refute what ours are gonna testify to. Thanks for playing kid, try again next time."

The solo told me he was so rattled he wasn't sleeping and eventually just referred his case to another firm for a small %. His lesson was that if you're EVER going to do contingency or any complicated personal injury case make sure liability is not at issue and the only thing at issue is the amount owed. When liability is not at issue its a lot easier to settle and also a lot easier to try the case. Firms or older attorneys with a bankroll will absolutely try to steamroll you like this when they are aware that you're new and have absolutely no funds to work with for a case.

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

Postby typ3 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:27 pm

BarbellDreams wrote:I actually forgot to add my favorite solo story I got from a solo who is 4 years in and somewhat successful. He had a plaintiff side civil litigation case when he came out of law school that he filed. Drafted up his complaint, triple checked it, asked some mentors, was really excited. Then he learned that a midsized law firm was the defendant's counsel. The mid size firm's mindset was basically this: Oh, you're a fresh grad trying to sue our client as a solo with no skills and no money? Cool, lets play. Here is 10,000 pages of discovery that we know you don't have the staff or the time to review by yourself. Good luck. Oh, and while we're at it, here is a list of our 5 expert witnesses that we will be paying 10K/each to. We know that you don't know shit about experts and we also know you don't have the cash to even hire ONE expert to refute what ours are gonna testify to. Thanks for playing kid, try again next time."

The solo told me he was so rattled he wasn't sleeping and eventually just referred his case to another firm for a small %. His lesson was that if you're EVER going to do contingency or any complicated personal injury case make sure liability is not at issue and the only thing at issue is the amount owed. When liability is not at issue its a lot easier to settle and also a lot easier to try the case. Firms or older attorneys with a bankroll will absolutely try to steamroll you like this when they are aware that you're new and have absolutely no funds to work with for a case.



The successful lawyers who do personal injury work run it like a mill. No contest over liability, clear damages. That's the way to survive in the game. The only ones who do litigation over questionable liabilities have deep pockets and they litigate against defendants with deep pockets when their is catastrophic injuries.

A lot of lawyers in the plaintiffs bar will spend more than defendants on cases, but they're in high 7 figure / 8 figure cases damages. Also experts in PI cases are a lot less than engineering experts in say an apple patent suit so the mileage varies on recovery based on what the tort / facts are and who you're suing.

If you want a real idea of how shitlaw works watch the rainmaker with Matt Damon in it- it's based on the Grisham novel. It's probably the best and most accurate representation of law practice and how the law is.

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

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:31 pm

I am graduating from a TTT in Texas with median grades I am in the top 50% and might squeak into the 33.3% based on cake walk 3L classes. I just got offered a job as an ADA in Texas. How it works is after I grad I am an paid intern until after I get my bar results and then I am sworn in as ADA. Cost of living is cheap and the starting salary is 60k. The only downside is that I would be leaving a non-legal position that pays 72k now. With the cheaper ADA benefits I am only losing about 500.00 a month take home. Should I take the ADA or hold on to my non-legal job while looking for another legal position?

Also, I absolutely want to litigate, and love the courtroom.

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

Postby BarbellDreams » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I am graduating from a TTT in Texas with median grades I am in the top 50% and might squeak into the 33.3% based on cake walk 3L classes. I just got offered a job as an ADA in Texas. How it works is after I grad I am an paid intern until after I get my bar results and then I am sworn in as ADA. Cost of living is cheap and the starting salary is 60k. The only downside is that I would be leaving a non-legal position that pays 72k now. With the cheaper ADA benefits I am only losing about 500.00 a month take home. Should I take the ADA or hold on to my non-legal job while looking for another legal position?

Also, I absolutely want to litigate, and love the courtroom.


If you want to be an attorney take the ADA position.




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