Pittsburgh Legal Market

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Anonymous User
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Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:51 pm

Assume I am a 3L at the median at a T14 school and on a secondary journal with solid regulatory compliance experience.

Assume further that I could end up moving to Pittsburgh with a SO who is going to make 200k+/YR (non-legal career, obiously).

With zero ties outside of the SO for moving there, what are my chances at getting a job? I'm not biglaw or bust, but it would be nice.

Anonymous User
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:04 pm

I spoke with a biglaw attorney who is a T-20 alum a month or so ago. In Pittsburgh the top schools are Pitt and Harvard. He said every once in awhile someone will be impressed that he went to a T-20. All of this has nothing to do with you chances just thought some insight would be helpful.

EDIT: The only reason he got the job is because of a family friend. He was median at T-20 and already had work experience prior to going to law school.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Assume I am a 3L at the median at a T14 school and on a secondary journal with solid regulatory compliance experience.

Assume further that I could end up moving to Pittsburgh with a SO who is going to make 200k+/YR (non-legal career, obiously).

With zero ties outside of the SO for moving there, what are my chances at getting a job? I'm not biglaw or bust, but it would be nice.


1L, but from Pittsburgh. I'd say I know the legal market fairly well. Its going to be hard not going to lie. Pittsburgh is very over saturated with lawyers, and the top firms there are very loyal to Pitt grads and Dusquene law grads. Attorneys that I have talked to could quite honestly give a fuck less about anyones T14 degree especially if they are not from there. Best chance joining the allegheny bar association and maybe trying to network your way into something. Oil and gas law is huge right now with the marcellus shale so if you would be willing to get into this type of law your chances at landing something are decent. To be honest tho if your SO is making that much money in PGH its probably not going to matter whether your employed due to the low COL.

HTH

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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:07 pm

Lacepiece23 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Assume I am a 3L at the median at a T14 school and on a secondary journal with solid regulatory compliance experience.

Assume further that I could end up moving to Pittsburgh with a SO who is going to make 200k+/YR (non-legal career, obiously).

With zero ties outside of the SO for moving there, what are my chances at getting a job? I'm not biglaw or bust, but it would be nice.


1L, but from Pittsburgh. I'd say I know the legal market fairly well. Its going to be hard not going to lie. Pittsburgh is very over saturated with lawyers, and the top firms there are very loyal to Pitt grads and Dusquene law grads. Attorneys that I have talked to could quite honestly give a fuck less about anyones T14 degree especially if they are not from there. Best chance joining the allegheny bar association and maybe trying to network your way into something. Oil and gas law is huge right now with the marcellus shale so if you would be willing to get into this type of law your chances at landing something are decent. To be honest tho if your SO is making that much money in PGH its probably not going to matter whether your employed due to the low COL.

HTH


Great piece of advice and really echoes what my interviewer said.

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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:15 pm

OP: This is so far outside the realm of rational responses that either you are clouded by your 1Lness and will transfer out of Dusquene or Pitt ASAP if you get the grades OR the Pitt legal market is beyond all competency to compete in the larger legal marketplace.


However, I am very interested in energy law. So there is some up side.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP: This is so far outside the realm of rational responses that either you are clouded by your 1Lness and will transfer out of Dusquene or Pitt ASAP if you get the grades OR the Pitt legal market is beyond all competency to compete in the larger legal marketplace.


However, I am very interested in energy law. So there is some up side.



I don't know if this was addressed to me, but I do not attend either of those schools. OP is a 3L i don't understand what you were trying to say, unless you are the OP

CanadianWolf
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:36 pm

I think he doesn't buy the Pitt & Duquesne placement over T-14s in Pittsburgh.

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moonman157
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby moonman157 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:51 pm

I'm also having a difficult time buying the Pitt/Duquesne over T14 argument. I have strong ties to Pittsburgh, so I'm tagging this and am interested to hear what others have to say

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20160810
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby 20160810 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:26 pm

I don't know jack about Pittsburgh specifically other than that your baseball team is always horrible, but with any smaller, insular legal market you're going to have to try and establish personal connections. I also doubt that the top firms in town prefer to hire from Pitt over T-14 schools, but they do prefer to hire a sure thing from Pitt over a flight risk from a T-14. So you need to convince them you're not just there until something better comes along in NYC or DC, and without the much-ballyhooed "TIES TO THE AREA" this can be hard to do. It's just easier for them to look for people who grew up in Pittsburgh, because it saves them the trouble of having to listen to your story about why you want to live there and then decide if it's bullshit or not.

I would scour the local firms' websites for alumni of your law school. If it's a T-14 school, you'll probably find a few. Shoot them an email out of the blue, and just kind of explain your situation and ask if they have any advice on how to break into the Pittsburgh market from that school. Be polite, and understand that you're a stranger and these people are busy, so some won't have time to help you out, but you might be surprised how many people are willing to take you out to coffee and give you some pointers. From there, you can hopefully get some connections from them as far as people in town who do work in your area of interest, and then get in touch with those connections and say "So and So told me to contact you." It doesn't guarantee anything, but your odds that way will be tons better than just cold-emailing your resume to HR people.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 5:03 pm

Sorry my response I guess could have been clearer. Of course I wasn't trying to say that Pitt>T14 all things being equal (grades and ties). I was specifically talking about OPs situation. If OP was top 1/3 I'd say he'd probably have a decent shot and landing a biglaw job. Top 10 percent is required for Pitt grads to even have a chance at these jobs would definitely give OP the edge and he could probably have his pick. However, that is not OPs situation, and yes I am a 1L, but as someone who has talked to partners, associates, and attorneys in hiring positions in Pgh they have flat out told me they prefer to take their own at the top then a T14 in the middle.

So there you go. Biglaw is probably out. Not saying its impossible, but improbable. Like I said with the right networking OP might be able to pull something decent in terms of a mid sized firm. It probably won't be your degree that gets you in the door though. Pittsburgh has a lot of successful attorneys that didn't go to top schools so trying to flash your t14 degree as a selling point probably won't get you anywhere without top grades. Try to look into the marcellus shale stuff it really is booming right now.

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moonman157
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby moonman157 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 5:13 pm

Lacepiece23 wrote:Sorry my response I guess could have been clearer. Of course I wasn't trying to say that Pitt>T14 all things being equal (grades and ties). I was specifically talking about OPs situation. If OP was top 1/3 I'd say he'd probably have a decent shot and landing a biglaw job. Top 10 percent is required for Pitt grads to even have a chance at these jobs would definitely give OP the edge and he could probably have his pick. However, that is not OPs situation, and yes I am a 1L, but as someone who has talked to partners, associates, and attorneys in hiring positions in Pgh they have flat out told me they prefer to take their own at the top then a T14 in the middle.

So there you go. Biglaw is probably out. Not saying its impossible, but improbable. Like I said with the right networking OP might be able to pull something decent in terms of a mid sized firm. It probably won't be your degree that gets you in the door though. Pittsburgh has a lot of successful attorneys that didn't go to top schools so trying to flash your t14 degree as a selling point probably won't get you anywhere without top grades. Try to look into the marcellus shale stuff it really is booming right now.


Thanks for the clarification. I go back and forth about whether or not I want to return to Pittsburgh after law school, though that decision may be made for me. Just trying to maximize my options should I try to gun for that. Thanks!

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Lacepiece23
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby Lacepiece23 » Wed Nov 14, 2012 5:23 pm

moonman157 wrote:
Lacepiece23 wrote:Sorry my response I guess could have been clearer. Of course I wasn't trying to say that Pitt>T14 all things being equal (grades and ties). I was specifically talking about OPs situation. If OP was top 1/3 I'd say he'd probably have a decent shot and landing a biglaw job. Top 10 percent is required for Pitt grads to even have a chance at these jobs would definitely give OP the edge and he could probably have his pick. However, that is not OPs situation, and yes I am a 1L, but as someone who has talked to partners, associates, and attorneys in hiring positions in Pgh they have flat out told me they prefer to take their own at the top then a T14 in the middle.

So there you go. Biglaw is probably out. Not saying its impossible, but improbable. Like I said with the right networking OP might be able to pull something decent in terms of a mid sized firm. It probably won't be your degree that gets you in the door though. Pittsburgh has a lot of successful attorneys that didn't go to top schools so trying to flash your t14 degree as a selling point probably won't get you anywhere without top grades. Try to look into the marcellus shale stuff it really is booming right now.


Thanks for the clarification. I go back and forth about whether or not I want to return to Pittsburgh after law school, though that decision may be made for me. Just trying to maximize my options should I try to gun for that. Thanks!


PM if you want to talk further I want to go back after graduation... I have a job like 95% secured for the summer (1L year) already. If you wanted to bounce any ideas back and forth let me know.. Also my 1L position was completely lucky lol not trying to brag or anything.

mrosmith
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Re: Pittsburgh Legal Market

Postby mrosmith » Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:10 pm

I will be taking the PA bar and moving there in August. Nothing lined up. Other than shaking the network tree and spamming all the firms in the area with my resume, anyone have any advice?




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