Am I still f**ked?

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Anonymous User
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Am I still f**ked?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:48 am

3L, just outside of top 10% + LR at a T25. Struck out at OCI last year and worked gov over the summer. Had about 10 firm/gov interviews lined up before I accepted an offer for a two-year clerkship with a federal district judge last week. The district is probably considered flyover, but it's in a rural part of a state that has desirable areas (so not D. Ark., but more like N.D. Fla./W.D. Pa./S.D. Tex.). I have no ties to the area and likely wouldn't want to practice in the state.

Coming into the cycle, I knew I wanted to clerk very badly regardless of where it was, so I'm certainly excited about the experience I'm going to have (especially because my long-term goal is a USAO). And I certainly feel lucky given how insanely competitive federal clerkships are these days. But I'm still worried about my prospects for permanent employment after my term ends. Do I have a decent shot at biglaw, or am I no better off than I was before the clerkship? Am I needlessly worrying? Everyone says ArtIII clerkships are almost universally large boosts to employment prospects, but I can't help but feel like my situation is uniquely a case where it might not be...

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traehekat
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby traehekat » Sat Sep 22, 2012 11:22 am

I really don't have much first-hand knowledge, but I've heard plenty of people say that a federal clerkship can "open the door" again for big law, and I've heard a couple specific stories of people who struck out as a 2L/3L but landed an Article III clerkship and ended up with multiple offers from firms when it was all said and done. This probably applies more so to those who want to do litigation versus corporate, though.

Either way, congrats on the clerkship!

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jessuf
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby jessuf » Sat Sep 22, 2012 1:43 pm

I interned in M.D. Fla., and there were clerks whose terms are expiring end of this month who don't have anything lined up yet. However, you come from a better school than them, and you have LR and a good rank. So you are definitely much more marketable!

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ggocat
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby ggocat » Sat Sep 22, 2012 8:32 pm

You could have biglaw options. Also likely midlaw / $100k and up. DOJ / big fed possible as well, including some USAO if the offifce is looking (e.g., sd and wd tex, az, nm). Also USCOA possible (unlikely).

luthersloan
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby luthersloan » Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:04 pm

You also might want to consider trying to make a run at a better clerkship for after your 2 year stint ends, might be able to land a COA clerkship in the middle of nowhere thanks to your 2 year district clerkship.

anon168
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby anon168 » Sat Sep 22, 2012 10:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:3L, just outside of top 10% + LR at a T25. Struck out at OCI last year and worked gov over the summer. Had about 10 firm/gov interviews lined up before I accepted an offer for a two-year clerkship with a federal district judge last week. The district is probably considered flyover, but it's in a rural part of a state that has desirable areas (so not D. Ark., but more like N.D. Fla./W.D. Pa./S.D. Tex.). I have no ties to the area and likely wouldn't want to practice in the state.

Coming into the cycle, I knew I wanted to clerk very badly regardless of where it was, so I'm certainly excited about the experience I'm going to have (especially because my long-term goal is a USAO). And I certainly feel lucky given how insanely competitive federal clerkships are these days. But I'm still worried about my prospects for permanent employment after my term ends. Do I have a decent shot at biglaw, or am I no better off than I was before the clerkship? Am I needlessly worrying? Everyone says ArtIII clerkships are almost universally large boosts to employment prospects, but I can't help but feel like my situation is uniquely a case where it might not be...


Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:10 pm

traehekat wrote:I've heard a couple specific stories of people who struck out as a 2L/3L but landed an Article III clerkship and ended up with multiple offers from firms when it was all said and done. This probably applies more so to those who want to do litigation versus corporate, though.

Definitely set on doing lit. I'm not even sure why people who want corp clerk at all (unless it's like, the Delaware Chancery Court, or something). :P

ggocat wrote:You could have biglaw options. Also likely midlaw / $100k and up. DOJ / big fed possible as well, including some USAO if the offifce is looking (e.g., sd and wd tex, az, nm). Also USCOA possible (unlikely).

Really? Do USAOs like that hire people straight out of clerkships? I had assumed that you were still considered an entry-level candidate out of a clerkship, so you still had to go through the Honors Program.

luthersloan wrote:You also might want to consider trying to make a run at a better clerkship for after your 2 year stint ends, might be able to land a COA clerkship in the middle of nowhere thanks to your 2 year district clerkship.

Certainly going to try this, though I imagine it would be an uphill battle unless I boost my GPA slightly this year and crack the top 10%.

anon168 wrote:Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

Anything that would provide interesting work and a decent salary. I'm not a prestige whore, and I would certainly consider Perkins Coie biglaw. And location-wise, I have ties to LA/SF, Las Vegas, and Boston, and would also work in NYC if necessary.

Pokemon
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby Pokemon » Sun Sep 23, 2012 3:19 pm

I was talking to a partner who got biglaw in a similar manner. This was before 2008 though. Middle of nowhere non-article III clerkship, local bigger firm, then NYC non-vault ranked, but high rated market paying boutique. My impression is that getting a clerkship is like making it to the big law station again; you might not get the big law train in the same way not everyone at OCI has, but together with OCI you have the best chance in your life.

anon168
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby anon168 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
anon168 wrote:Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

Anything that would provide interesting work and a decent salary. I'm not a prestige whore, and I would certainly consider Perkins Coie biglaw. And location-wise, I have ties to LA/SF, Las Vegas, and Boston, and would also work in NYC if necessary.


Then, yes, you do have a shot at biglaw. A pretty good one, in fact.

(But I'm not sure there are "biglaw" type firms in Vegas ...)

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ggocat
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby ggocat » Sun Sep 23, 2012 5:22 pm

Yep, some USAOs hire straight out of clerkships. It may be through the honor program (usao are part of doj). I know a guy hired straight from district court in 2008 and someone interviewing this year.

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paratactical
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby paratactical » Sun Sep 23, 2012 5:52 pm

anon168 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
anon168 wrote:Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

Anything that would provide interesting work and a decent salary. I'm not a prestige whore, and I would certainly consider Perkins Coie biglaw. And location-wise, I have ties to LA/SF, Las Vegas, and Boston, and would also work in NYC if necessary.


Then, yes, you do have a shot at biglaw. A pretty good one, in fact.

(But I'm not sure there are "biglaw" type firms in Vegas ...)

Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig both have Vegas offices, bro. I'm sure there are others as well.

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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 6:14 pm

paratactical wrote:
anon168 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
anon168 wrote:Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

Anything that would provide interesting work and a decent salary. I'm not a prestige whore, and I would certainly consider Perkins Coie biglaw. And location-wise, I have ties to LA/SF, Las Vegas, and Boston, and would also work in NYC if necessary.


Then, yes, you do have a shot at biglaw. A pretty good one, in fact.

(But I'm not sure there are "biglaw" type firms in Vegas ...)

Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig both have Vegas offices, bro. I'm sure there are others as well.

Yeah, plus there are firms like Snell & Wilmer where, while not technically biglaw, I'd probably be happy. But I'm wondering why you think I have a pretty good shot at big-but-not-super-prestigious firms, anon168. Conventional wisdom seems to state that one of the huge advantages of a D.Ct. clerkship is the connections you make through your judge. But if I don't want to practice in the state where I'll be clerking, those won't matter. Are firms really going to be receptive to a dude who mass mails them after going west coast UG --> east coast LS --> middle of fucking nowhere D.Ct. clerkship, and then tries to go back to west/east coast firm?

anon168
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby anon168 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:04 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Yeah, plus there are firms like Snell & Wilmer where, while not technically biglaw, I'd probably be happy. But I'm wondering why you think I have a pretty good shot at big-but-not-super-prestigious firms, anon168. Conventional wisdom seems to state that one of the huge advantages of a D.Ct. clerkship is the connections you make through your judge. But if I don't want to practice in the state where I'll be clerking, those won't matter. Are firms really going to be receptive to a dude who mass mails them after going west coast UG --> east coast LS --> middle of fucking nowhere D.Ct. clerkship, and then tries to go back to west/east coast firm?


Conventional wisdom is wrong. At least the conventional wisdom that you speak of. Because the conventional wisdom you speak of is only conventional here on TLS, which by definition makes it "not wisdom".

The biggest advantage of clerking at the D.Ct. level is learning what litigation is like behind the velvet rope.

Yes, getting to know a federal district court judge is great and of course it helps, but the experience you get from clerking 1 year is probably 10x more valuable than what an associate can get at a typical firm for 3 years. Most first years have no freaking idea what a 12(b)(6) motion is, much less what one looks like, or what a good one should be. You'll learn all three by your 3rd motion calendar.

And having to write a bench memo, or an OSC, or an opinion, and then having to defend your position with the judge is something many partners will never get to experience. The insights, knowledge and practical experience you get from that interaction is something money, and years at a firm, cannot buy.

Now, whether a particular firm will be receptive to you? Who knows. That's firm specific. But having clerked for 2 years you'll be in a far better position to mass mail than if you did not clerk.

anon168
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby anon168 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:06 pm

paratactical wrote:
anon168 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
anon168 wrote:Hard to say without knowing what you mean by biglaw, and in what city. Do you mean biglaw as in Skadden, or biglaw as in Perkins Coie (for example)? And really need to know what city you want to for work post-clerkship.

Anything that would provide interesting work and a decent salary. I'm not a prestige whore, and I would certainly consider Perkins Coie biglaw. And location-wise, I have ties to LA/SF, Las Vegas, and Boston, and would also work in NYC if necessary.


Then, yes, you do have a shot at biglaw. A pretty good one, in fact.

(But I'm not sure there are "biglaw" type firms in Vegas ...)

Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig both have Vegas offices, bro. I'm sure there are others as well.


There are undoubtedly biglaw firms in Vegas, but not necessarily biglaw work. Same could be said for markets like Phoenix, Jersey, Denver and even SD.

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paratactical
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby paratactical » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:18 pm

wut

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romothesavior
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby romothesavior » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:25 pm

paratactical wrote:wut

Look friendo, Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig are not "biglaw," they are festering hellholes kind of like Perkins Coie. NYC V5 or bust, bitch.

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ndirish2010
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby ndirish2010 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:29 pm

romothesavior wrote:
paratactical wrote:wut

Look friendo, Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig are not "biglaw," they are festering hellholes kind of like Perkins Coie. NYC V5 or bust, bitch.


Us midwesterners are so TTT.

Anonnn
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Re: Am I still fucked?

Postby Anonnn » Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:25 am

romothesavior wrote:
paratactical wrote:wut

Look friendo, Duane Morris and Greenberg Traurig are not "biglaw," they are festering hellholes kind of like Perkins Coie. NYC V5 or bust, bitch.



So TTT.




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