In-house 2L summer

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Anonymous User
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In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:37 pm

Got an interview with the in-house department of a Fortune 500 company (basically a very very large insurance company). They pay decently (I need money), but don't make offers at the end of the summer (whether this means they don't offer interns at any time ever or just don't do it at the end of the summer, I do not know). I know this is very premature, but here's my situation.

Top 20% at T30, secondary journal
Struck out (obviously), looking to spring OCI (very very slim pickings), 3L OCI (I know, 3L OCI is a joke) or clerking (I'm doing a judicial externship next semester in a specialty court that I have some background in, writing a note on a related topic). No debt. After striking out, I was hoping to work for a smallish midsize firm as a summer clerk, but most of those firms don't hire anyone until February at the earliest.

How does this type of internship look to judges and firms?
Will this give me some chance of working in house right after law school at a different company?
Any chance of a full time offer?
If I get a better offer later in the year for 2L summer, any repercussions for backing out of the internship? (I don't care about morality)

Thanks for your help!!

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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:44 pm

With your grades at a T30, why do you think 3L OCI is a joke? I know of some who lateraled from their 2L SA to a better 3L firm (better = more $), meaning that there are numerous opportunities for 3L.

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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:With your grades at a T30, why do you think 3L OCI is a joke? I know of some who lateraled from their 2L SA to a better 3L firm (better = more $), meaning that there are numerous opportunities for 3L.

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bk1
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby bk1 » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:With your grades at a T30, why do you think 3L OCI is a joke? I know of some who lateraled from their 2L SA to a better 3L firm (better = more $), meaning that there are numerous opportunities for 3L.

:|

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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 07, 2012 7:02 pm

anything substantive?

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kalvano
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby kalvano » Sat Dec 08, 2012 1:36 am

Almost certainly no offer, and the chance of going in-house immediately following graduation are very slim.

But I worked in-house part of the summer and it was pretty cool. Lots of employment law and compliance law to work with, and it certainly doesn't look bad to anyone.

Regardless, if you need money and they will pay, do you have anything better?

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danquayle
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby danquayle » Sat Dec 08, 2012 1:47 am

kalvano wrote:Almost certainly no offer, and the chance of going in-house immediately following graduation are very slim.

But I worked in-house part of the summer and it was pretty cool. Lots of employment law and compliance law to work with, and it certainly doesn't look bad to anyone.

Regardless, if you need money and they will pay, do you have anything better?


Depends on the company, but hiring directly out of law school is becoming much more common. I would think a large, nationally recognized in-house position would be preferable to a small to mid-sized firm for long term career prospects.

That said, 2L jobs are meant to set you up at the place you're at, not bolster your prospects elsewhere. I'd try to investigate whether this company hires at all following graduation. I know several people who worked at companies that claimed they did not make offers to 2L summers, but ended up doing so anyways on the basis of their work product.

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piccolittle
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby piccolittle » Sat Dec 08, 2012 2:16 am

Also, bear in mind that this company is likely to be a client of many (if not most) big firms in the area. Doing great work and impressing your supervisors will go a long way when you ask them during the summer whether they know of any firm contacts you could reach out to, or if they have any advice. Don't be afraid to tell them you're looking to go to a firm - it's expected! Most of them will have come from firms (especially if the company doesn't make a practice of hiring straight out of LS), and they will have outside counsel they work with all the time. I worked in-house this summer (between 1L and 2L) and my rising 3L friend ended up with his dream job because he worked hard and made it clear to his supervisors that he was looking for (and deserved) opportunities. Many times all it will take to get an interview is your boss picking up the phone and suggesting that they have a great 3L prospect if the partner knows of anything. These partners also want to cement their connections/loyalty with the client, so they'll do whatever it takes to make them happy (within reason).

ETA: That's if the firm has an opening for a 3L, obviously... But things can happen and firms won't do things like 3L OCI for one or two spots that they have to fill.

Honestly, I think a paying in-house gig at a well-known company is the next best thing to working at a firm for the summer, and will get you a lot if you know where and how to focus your effort during the summer.

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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:00 am

Hey OP, I do not mean to derail the thread, but do you mind sharing how you got the job this early? Mass mail, company site, simplicity?

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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:16 am

OP here. Got the interview through symplicity

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danquayle
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby danquayle » Sat Dec 08, 2012 2:17 pm

piccolittle wrote:Also, bear in mind that this company is likely to be a client of many (if not most) big firms in the area. Doing great work and impressing your supervisors will go a long way when you ask them during the summer whether they know of any firm contacts you could reach out to, or if they have any advice. Don't be afraid to tell them you're looking to go to a firm - it's expected! Most of them will have come from firms (especially if the company doesn't make a practice of hiring straight out of LS), and they will have outside counsel they work with all the time. I worked in-house this summer (between 1L and 2L) and my rising 3L friend ended up with his dream job because he worked hard and made it clear to his supervisors that he was looking for (and deserved) opportunities. Many times all it will take to get an interview is your boss picking up the phone and suggesting that they have a great 3L prospect if the partner knows of anything. These partners also want to cement their connections/loyalty with the client, so they'll do whatever it takes to make them happy (within reason).

ETA: That's if the firm has an opening for a 3L, obviously... But things can happen and firms won't do things like 3L OCI for one or two spots that they have to fill.

Honestly, I think a paying in-house gig at a well-known company is the next best thing to working at a firm for the summer, and will get you a lot if you know where and how to focus your effort during the summer.


Agree completely. There is a lot more upside to working in house at a large company than at a smallish firm. At a smallish firm, your best outcome is getting an offer with that firm. In house at a company can get you contacts to larger firms or in the industry.

There is a general rule that going in house chills your opportunity to go back to a firm later. While this is somewhat true, it is becoming much more common, particularly at the book ends of your career. I went straight in house out of law school to Fortune 500 along with a couple other people. Those other people have since moved on to NLJ 250 firms, with one landing at a top 10.

Like with law firms branding matters, and if the company is respected nationally its pretty hard to go wrong. It can also help if the company is in a demanded industry. I work in the IT industry, and that was a major selling point to the firms that hired those people since IT transactions, privacy, health, etc are all pretty in hot right now. Experience with a major auto company probably wouldn't be as marketable.

I think working at an insurance company in particular would be a strong selling point. Tons of firms do insurance work.

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piccolittle
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby piccolittle » Sat Dec 08, 2012 2:27 pm

danquayle wrote:
piccolittle wrote:Also, bear in mind that this company is likely to be a client of many (if not most) big firms in the area. Doing great work and impressing your supervisors will go a long way when you ask them during the summer whether they know of any firm contacts you could reach out to, or if they have any advice. Don't be afraid to tell them you're looking to go to a firm - it's expected! Most of them will have come from firms (especially if the company doesn't make a practice of hiring straight out of LS), and they will have outside counsel they work with all the time. I worked in-house this summer (between 1L and 2L) and my rising 3L friend ended up with his dream job because he worked hard and made it clear to his supervisors that he was looking for (and deserved) opportunities. Many times all it will take to get an interview is your boss picking up the phone and suggesting that they have a great 3L prospect if the partner knows of anything. These partners also want to cement their connections/loyalty with the client, so they'll do whatever it takes to make them happy (within reason).

ETA: That's if the firm has an opening for a 3L, obviously... But things can happen and firms won't do things like 3L OCI for one or two spots that they have to fill.

Honestly, I think a paying in-house gig at a well-known company is the next best thing to working at a firm for the summer, and will get you a lot if you know where and how to focus your effort during the summer.

There is a general rule that going in house chills your opportunity to go back to a firm later. While this is somewhat true, it is becoming much more common, particularly at the book ends of your career. I went straight in house out of law school to Fortune 500 along with a couple other people. Those other people have since moved on to NLJ 250 firms, with one landing at a top 10.

Also note that this "general rule" really applies to going in-house out of school, not working there during the summers. Does the insurance company have different legal departments they can slot you into? I know, for example, that MetLife does paid summer legal internships but it's not necessarily strictly insurance-related work. They have employment, litigation, IP, tax, etc. departments that you work in, so your experience wouldn't be narrowly applicable to only insurance companies, but to life at a corporation in general. This is a huge selling point when you're looking to go to a firm - you've seen the client's perspective and so you know how to tailor your legal advice to their business needs and can communicate it in a way that they can use.

Haha sorry I keep harping on this, but I honestly think in-house work is so valuable during law school. It was a huge selling point for me in all my interviews, and I know so many people who got crazy opportunities because they knew how to make the most of their time as legal interns at my company.

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danquayle
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Re: In-house 2L summer

Postby danquayle » Sat Dec 08, 2012 2:35 pm

piccolittle wrote:
danquayle wrote:
piccolittle wrote:Also, bear in mind that this company is likely to be a client of many (if not most) big firms in the area. Doing great work and impressing your supervisors will go a long way when you ask them during the summer whether they know of any firm contacts you could reach out to, or if they have any advice. Don't be afraid to tell them you're looking to go to a firm - it's expected! Most of them will have come from firms (especially if the company doesn't make a practice of hiring straight out of LS), and they will have outside counsel they work with all the time. I worked in-house this summer (between 1L and 2L) and my rising 3L friend ended up with his dream job because he worked hard and made it clear to his supervisors that he was looking for (and deserved) opportunities. Many times all it will take to get an interview is your boss picking up the phone and suggesting that they have a great 3L prospect if the partner knows of anything. These partners also want to cement their connections/loyalty with the client, so they'll do whatever it takes to make them happy (within reason).

ETA: That's if the firm has an opening for a 3L, obviously... But things can happen and firms won't do things like 3L OCI for one or two spots that they have to fill.

Honestly, I think a paying in-house gig at a well-known company is the next best thing to working at a firm for the summer, and will get you a lot if you know where and how to focus your effort during the summer.

There is a general rule that going in house chills your opportunity to go back to a firm later. While this is somewhat true, it is becoming much more common, particularly at the book ends of your career. I went straight in house out of law school to Fortune 500 along with a couple other people. Those other people have since moved on to NLJ 250 firms, with one landing at a top 10.

Also note that this "general rule" really applies to going in-house out of school, not working there during the summers. Does the insurance company have different legal departments they can slot you into? I know, for example, that MetLife does paid summer legal internships but it's not necessarily strictly insurance-related work. They have employment, litigation, IP, tax, etc. departments that you work in, so your experience wouldn't be narrowly applicable to only insurance companies, but to life at a corporation in general. This is a huge selling point when you're looking to go to a firm - you've seen the client's perspective and so you know how to tailor your legal advice to their business needs and can communicate it in a way that they can use.

Haha sorry I keep harping on this, but I honestly think in-house work is so valuable during law school. It was a huge selling point for me in all my interviews, and I know so many people who got crazy opportunities because they knew how to make the most of their time as legal interns at my company.


Agree completely. Remember when you're selling yourself to a potential firm, you're really selling them on their ability to sell you to a client. That's part of the reason they focus on prestige... so they can say "oh attorney X went to Harvard." Law firms would definitely highlight your in house experience to clients as making your better able to understand their needs.

Piccolittle is also spot on - in house lawyers tend to be generalists. That's not necessarily a bad thing early on... let's you cast a wide net.




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