Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:48 pm

Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I don't know how correct or incorrect the information is or how well I will deal with the stress or how big law will wear me down. I do know this though: Nobody in my family has had any level of career success, at least not financially, except for two uncles, who I estimate earn roughly $200k. One runs a supermarket and one works in real estate management. None of them have it easier than a big law lawyer. Both are on call 24/7, both have intense jobs with demanding clients and insane hours during particular seasons, and neither of them have exit options that are anything other than moar pie. The bottom line is that if you are happy bringing home 80k between you and your SO, then you can find a job working 9-5 and keep it from recession to recession. But if you want to be able to pay your kids' college tuition or pay for their braces, summer camps, and weddings without jeopardizing your retirement, you have to do a little more and whatever that is, it's unlikely to be soul-nourishing.


Aw, that's cute, you think big law is that job.

Talk to me after 4 years of big law when you don't have a wife to come home to, or kids (at least ones that don't mistake your wife's booty call for their dad and you for her booty call), and the only things that will listen to your sobs are TLS, your pillow, and maybe the prostitute you brought up for the evening just to have someone to talk to.

Talk to me after 5 when you're being suggested out the door and you find yourself a burnt out doc reviewing contract attorney getting paid hourly.

Talk to me after 6 when you find out that only one of your class of 50 summers is still at the firm and likely to make partner, while the most successful of the rest are desperately trying to concoct an interesting e-harmony profile to attract someone, anyone, into their web since they wasted the past 6 years in an all consuming, tedious, thankless job.
I mean, okay, if that's what happens I will obviously have had a pretty terrible outcome. Are you suggesting that most big law attorneys lead that sort of life? Because that's preposterous to anyone who has met a couple lawyers. Are you suggesting that some do? I'll grant you that, but there are desperate chain smoking alcoholics in every profession, especially those that pay the bills. If it's true that it happens to more lawyers, it's also true that lawyers get certain benefits unique to the profession.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I don't know how correct or incorrect the information is or how well I will deal with the stress or how big law will wear me down. I do know this though: Nobody in my family has had any level of career success, at least not financially, except for two uncles, who I estimate earn roughly $200k. One runs a supermarket and one works in real estate management. None of them have it easier than a big law lawyer. Both are on call 24/7, both have intense jobs with demanding clients and insane hours during particular seasons, and neither of them have exit options that are anything other than moar pie. The bottom line is that if you are happy bringing home 80k between you and your SO, then you can find a job working 9-5 and keep it from recession to recession. But if you want to be able to pay your kids' college tuition or pay for their braces, summer camps, and weddings without jeopardizing your retirement, you have to do a little more and whatever that is, it's unlikely to be soul-nourishing.


Aw, that's cute, you think big law is that job.

Talk to me after 4 years of big law when you don't have a wife to come home to, or kids (at least ones that don't mistake your wife's booty call for their dad and you for her booty call), and the only things that will listen to your sobs are TLS, your pillow, and maybe the prostitute you brought up for the evening just to have someone to talk to.

Talk to me after 5 when you're being suggested out the door and you find yourself a burnt out doc reviewing contract attorney getting paid hourly.

Talk to me after 6 when you find out that only one of your class of 50 summers is still at the firm and likely to make partner, while the most successful of the rest are desperately trying to concoct an interesting e-harmony profile to attract someone, anyone, into their web since they wasted the past 6 years in an all consuming, tedious, thankless job.
I mean, okay, if that's what happens I will obviously have had a pretty terrible outcome. Are you suggesting that most big law attorneys lead that sort of life? Because that's preposterous to anyone who has met a couple lawyers. Are you suggesting that some do? I'll grant you that, but there are desperate chain smoking alcoholics in every profession, especially those that pay the bills. If it's true that it happens to more lawyers, it's also true that lawyers get certain benefits unique to the profession.


I am suggesting that most lawyers in big law are unhappy.

I am suggesting that most lawyers in big law will not end up a rich partner able to pay for everything their wife and kids ever wanted, because to make partner, unless you're the son of a congressman, you'll likely have to sacrifice everything that isn't work to get there. Including your wife and family. But hey, you'd be able to get a Ferrari.

I am suggesting that a good chunk of big law lawyers -- perhaps a majority, and perhaps only applicable to litigators, but I have no data here -- probably are making less after 8 years than they were as a first year.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:00 pm

Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I don't know how correct or incorrect the information is or how well I will deal with the stress or how big law will wear me down. I do know this though: Nobody in my family has had any level of career success, at least not financially, except for two uncles, who I estimate earn roughly $200k. One runs a supermarket and one works in real estate management. None of them have it easier than a big law lawyer. Both are on call 24/7, both have intense jobs with demanding clients and insane hours during particular seasons, and neither of them have exit options that are anything other than moar pie. The bottom line is that if you are happy bringing home 80k between you and your SO, then you can find a job working 9-5 and keep it from recession to recession. But if you want to be able to pay your kids' college tuition or pay for their braces, summer camps, and weddings without jeopardizing your retirement, you have to do a little more and whatever that is, it's unlikely to be soul-nourishing.


Aw, that's cute, you think big law is that job.

Talk to me after 4 years of big law when you don't have a wife to come home to, or kids (at least ones that don't mistake your wife's booty call for their dad and you for her booty call), and the only things that will listen to your sobs are TLS, your pillow, and maybe the prostitute you brought up for the evening just to have someone to talk to.

Talk to me after 5 when you're being suggested out the door and you find yourself a burnt out doc reviewing contract attorney getting paid hourly.

Talk to me after 6 when you find out that only one of your class of 50 summers is still at the firm and likely to make partner, while the most successful of the rest are desperately trying to concoct an interesting e-harmony profile to attract someone, anyone, into their web since they wasted the past 6 years in an all consuming, tedious, thankless job.
I mean, okay, if that's what happens I will obviously have had a pretty terrible outcome. Are you suggesting that most big law attorneys lead that sort of life? Because that's preposterous to anyone who has met a couple lawyers. Are you suggesting that some do? I'll grant you that, but there are desperate chain smoking alcoholics in every profession, especially those that pay the bills. If it's true that it happens to more lawyers, it's also true that lawyers get certain benefits unique to the profession.


I am suggesting that most lawyers in big law are unhappy.

I am suggesting that most lawyers in big law will not end up a rich partner able to pay for everything their wife and kids ever wanted, because to make partner, unless you're the son of a congressman, you'll likely have to sacrifice everything that isn't work to get there. Including your wife and family. But hey, you'd be able to get a Ferrari.

I am suggesting that a good chunk of big law lawyers -- perhaps a majority, and perhaps only applicable to litigators, but I have no data here -- probably are making less after 8 years than they were as a first year.
Okay, so we're not that far apart. I didn't mean to say that I'll make partner. I just meant that law school is far more likely to lead to a long term job that pays in the low six figures, and that the stress is likely to be similar at almost any job with a similar pay scale.

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Objection
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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:09 pm

Sure it is.

I'm not trashing the legal profession.

I'm trashing big law and, in particular, this notion that big law is a realistic path to early retirement, wealth, and stable family.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby aces » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:22 pm

Can I quickly mention something? I get that you, Objection, have a perspective that is perhaps not as visible to 0Ls and law students as it should be. I understand that you want to share that perspective with folks that you think it might help. But I think at this point it has been pretty fully sketched out both on this thread and the other one on life in biglaw, and now you're just shouting over anyone who has an experience contrary to yours, which is just zealotry in the other direction. I mean, responding to everyone else's personal experiences with "you're wrong" is not helpful.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:24 pm

aces wrote:Can I quickly mention something? I get that you, Objection, have a perspective that is perhaps not as visible to 0Ls and law students as it should be. I understand that you want to share that perspective with folks that you think it might help. But I think at this point it has been pretty fully sketched out both on this thread and the other one on life in biglaw, and now you're just shouting over anyone who has an experience contrary to yours, which is just zealotry in the other direction. I mean, responding to everyone else's personal experiences with "you're wrong" is not helpful.


You're welcome to disapprove or disagree.

Also, I don't think that many people in this thread actually have big law experience. Lots of speculating. There are a few though.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:52 pm

Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k


Knobbe Martens.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k


I am not doing your research for you.

Go through NALP.

Try http://www.lawfirmstats.com/

Etc.

If you can't find them, you're not looking.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Old Gregg » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:06 pm

Objection wrote:
aces wrote:Can I quickly mention something? I get that you, Objection, have a perspective that is perhaps not as visible to 0Ls and law students as it should be. I understand that you want to share that perspective with folks that you think it might help. But I think at this point it has been pretty fully sketched out both on this thread and the other one on life in biglaw, and now you're just shouting over anyone who has an experience contrary to yours, which is just zealotry in the other direction. I mean, responding to everyone else's personal experiences with "you're wrong" is not helpful.


You're welcome to disapprove or disagree.

Also, I don't think that many people in this thread actually have big law experience. Lots of speculating. There are a few though.



You did only 6 months. Cool your jets.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:09 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
Objection wrote:
aces wrote:Can I quickly mention something? I get that you, Objection, have a perspective that is perhaps not as visible to 0Ls and law students as it should be. I understand that you want to share that perspective with folks that you think it might help. But I think at this point it has been pretty fully sketched out both on this thread and the other one on life in biglaw, and now you're just shouting over anyone who has an experience contrary to yours, which is just zealotry in the other direction. I mean, responding to everyone else's personal experiences with "you're wrong" is not helpful.


You're welcome to disapprove or disagree.

Also, I don't think that many people in this thread actually have big law experience. Lots of speculating. There are a few though.



You did only 6 months. Cool your jets.


I would think that doing 6 months and leaving gives me a more realistic perspective on what new associates will be facing than someone suffering from Stockholm Syndrome and still there.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Old Gregg » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:10 pm

Objection wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
Objection wrote:
aces wrote:Can I quickly mention something? I get that you, Objection, have a perspective that is perhaps not as visible to 0Ls and law students as it should be. I understand that you want to share that perspective with folks that you think it might help. But I think at this point it has been pretty fully sketched out both on this thread and the other one on life in biglaw, and now you're just shouting over anyone who has an experience contrary to yours, which is just zealotry in the other direction. I mean, responding to everyone else's personal experiences with "you're wrong" is not helpful.


You're welcome to disapprove or disagree.

Also, I don't think that many people in this thread actually have big law experience. Lots of speculating. There are a few though.



You did only 6 months. Cool your jets.


I would think that doing 6 months and leaving gives me a more realistic perspective on what new associates will be facing than someone suffering from Stockholm Syndrome and still there.


Kind of a false dichotomy.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:15 pm

Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k


I am not doing your research for you.

Go through NALP.

Try http://www.lawfirmstats.com/

Etc.

If you can't find them, you're not looking.

How are those sites supposed to help? If you could go back and talk to pre-OCI Objection what would you tell him to look for?

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:27 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k


Knobbe Martens.


You have fewer hours required at Knobbe but the hours counted are those after the partner write off, not what you put in the system. So...you have even less control over hours than in biglaw. My friends at Knobbe like it but are just as anxious as me, if not worse because of this

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby crazycanuck » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:28 pm

Most law students don't want to be lawyers. They want to wear suits and pretend to be important. Then they realize it's what DualIncomenodebt describe, and realize they hate life.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Mar 19, 2013 3:05 am

Anonymous User wrote:... If you go to law school, take out a lot of debt and therefore have to work biglaw, and then figure out "well crap, I would have preferred my 9-5 at $50k after all" well, oops, that is a mistake. But, that's also not a comparable job. When you are feeling crappy about your life choices, biglaw participants and hopefuls, just keep in mind that all the haters rarely have data to support the idea that biglaw is necessarily so much worse than COMPARABLE jobs.

As one of these biglaw "haters" (I am actually just an associate wishing I had believed people when they told me how bad it would be), I think whether comparable (salary-wise) jobs are attainable is beside the point. To the extent I have shared my experiences on the board, it is so that it might help someone avoid making the mistake you mention (though, I didn't believe people who were trying to do the same thing, so maybe this is something people have to experience for themselves).

I agree that there are few jobs with similar pay that are available to the average 0L or law school graduate (depending on whether this is a decision of going to law school or not, or going into biglaw vs another legal job upon graduation). In the former case, those options may have also required a large debt load (e.g. med school). This alone doesn't necessarily make biglaw a good choice for everyone.

As some of the other posters have mentioned, it isn't a choice between biglaw and a completely different career. Most people entering law school have never made $160k/year and biglaw may be their only realistic chance of doing so. All I am saying is that it's worth considering if you really care all that much about making that kind of salary (particularly taking into account that you won't have much time to enjoy it). I think most of us went in thinking, "well, nothing can be so bad that it wouldn't be worth doing for a few years to make that much money" (and this is true for some people). It's worth considering whether you'd prefer to have a lower salary and a different lifestyle. The options aren't as structured and obvious as biglaw recruitment, but people do other things out of law school. However, this choice is a lot easier to make if you planned for it by minimizing your debt load when choosing a school. (I do realize that this option isn't available to everyone, but most of those going to the usual biglaw feeder schools end up with scholarship offers elsewhere. The balance of job prospects out of those schools is obviously important, but this isn't all or nothing.)

But yes, if you are sure that what you want is to make $160k/year (or feel pressure to want this so that you can go to the highest ranked school you get into regardless of the debt load), there aren't a ton of comparable options and biglaw is probably the best bet for you. In that sense, biglaw is a great opportunity.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Kochel » Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:10 am

My first year in Biglaw was a real rush. Killer hours (multiple 70-hour weeks, lots of all-nighters), but those were spent on fast-paced deals or projects where it was just me and the partner. Got a big raise just a few months into the year when Biglaw universally raised starting salaries (I know this dates me). I was a K-JD and this was my first real job. It was exciting.

The next three years were bad. The glamor wore off, and then some. My social life vanished. In the first year, that seemed like a temporary thing that you could brush off in light of the adrenaline and the good paychecks. But as time went by, friendships melted away because I couldn't do anything outside the office. My wife was also in Biglaw and we barely saw one another. Friends at the firm started getting the boot: all it took was one bad relationship with a partner, or one client who complained, and that's all the rationale the firm needed. The firm's process of assigning work, which had seemed so orderly and evenhanded at first, turned out to rest solely on politics. The long hours stopped being exciting and became a true burden--that is, when work was to be had (there was a recession).

Rather than waiting to become a victim of performance reviews, I fled in my fourth year. To an in-house job that offered comparable pay, fantastic hours and little stress. Of my 70 summer associate classmates, fewer than 5 made partner. Biglaw, it turns out, does have its virtues, since I couldn't have gone in-house without it. But those virtues usually don't benefit current associates.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:20 am

Tiago Splitter wrote:
Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Objection wrote:Not sure why people have to look at comparable jobs when trying to decide what life they want for themselves and how big law jobs are usually wholly incompatible with that. It doesn't change anything that "all jobs paying this much to start are bad."

Another problem problem with that line of thinking is it is not "$160k or bust." You won't find many lifestyle firms paying $160, but you'll find a bunch paying $100-140.

Finally, I'm not sure where you're getting the "law school must pay itself off in 3-5 years" thing from.


Name the firms that are $140k but you know you have a better life than biglaw. Name it even at $100k


I am not doing your research for you.

Go through NALP.

Try http://www.lawfirmstats.com/

Etc.

If you can't find them, you're not looking.

How are those sites supposed to help? If you could go back and talk to pre-OCI Objection what would you tell him to look for?


If I could talk to pre-OCI Objection, I would tell him not to do big law, period. It would go from my plan A to my plan Z.

If he wouldn't listen, I'd tell him to ignore the vault and "prestigious" markets, which, when combined, are pretty sure signs of sweatshops.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby danitt » Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:29 am

Objection wrote:If I could talk to pre-OCI Objection, I would tell him not to do big law, period. It would go from my plan A to my plan Z.

If he wouldn't listen, I'd tell him to ignore the vault and "prestigious" markets, which, when combined, are pretty sure signs of sweatshops.

You would still go to law school?

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby los blancos » Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:35 am

JFC I'm so happy I'm not doing biglaw in a big market.

Midlaw in a secondary/tertiary market FTMFW

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:35 am

danitt wrote:
Objection wrote:If I could talk to pre-OCI Objection, I would tell him not to do big law, period. It would go from my plan A to my plan Z.

If he wouldn't listen, I'd tell him to ignore the vault and "prestigious" markets, which, when combined, are pretty sure signs of sweatshops.

You would still go to law school?


Yes, but I would have taken money over prestige in making my selection.

I actually really like the idea of being a lawyer -- trial lawyer in particular.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby run26.2 » Tue Mar 19, 2013 11:55 am

Objection wrote:
danitt wrote:
Objection wrote:If I could talk to pre-OCI Objection, I would tell him not to do big law, period. It would go from my plan A to my plan Z.

If he wouldn't listen, I'd tell him to ignore the vault and "prestigious" markets, which, when combined, are pretty sure signs of sweatshops.

You would still go to law school?


Yes, but I would have taken money over prestige in making my selection.

I actually really like the idea of being a lawyer -- trial lawyer in particular.

What did you leave to go do? Six months is pretty quick, but if you know, you know.

I am right at about six months in, and there have been a couple of times where I have strongly disliked my job. But it has always gotten better, and I'm generally enjoying it now.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby Objection » Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:07 pm

run26.2 wrote:
Objection wrote:
danitt wrote:
Objection wrote:If I could talk to pre-OCI Objection, I would tell him not to do big law, period. It would go from my plan A to my plan Z.

If he wouldn't listen, I'd tell him to ignore the vault and "prestigious" markets, which, when combined, are pretty sure signs of sweatshops.

You would still go to law school?


Yes, but I would have taken money over prestige in making my selection.

I actually really like the idea of being a lawyer -- trial lawyer in particular.

What did you leave to go do? Six months is pretty quick, but if you know, you know.

I am right at about six months in, and there have been a couple of times where I have strongly disliked my job. But it has always gotten better, and I'm generally enjoying it now.


The problem is it will only get worse from there, in all likelihood.

First year, from my understanding, is the easiest year of big law until you're partner tracked or made partner.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby run26.2 » Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:26 pm

Objection wrote:
The problem is it will only get worse from there, in all likelihood.

First year, from my understanding, is the easiest year of big law until you're partner tracked or made partner.

There are so many things on which QOL/busyness depends, e.g. office, practice area, stage of the deal/litigation, personal preference.

I work at a recognizable firm in a non-HQ office on the West Coast. there is a wide spectrum of degrees of people being busy among the associates, and this seems to be mainly based on personal preference, believe it or not. Most of the partners are at least as busy as the associates, with a few exceptions.

While I am busy, I do not feel overwhelmed or close to it. The main drag, when it becomes a drag, is the type of work as opposed to the amount. The other drawback is that as a junior, and perhaps even as a more senior attorney, your schedule is mainly subject to someone else's desires. But I take the good with the bad, and try to look forward to the interesting parts of my job.

If I were to give advice to people choosing a firm, I would say vet it well, and worry a bit less about prestige. Try to talk to associates that are not the ones that they put in front of you to email to get a sense for the personalities in the office and what work is like there. Then realize that a lot of what you are going to do will simply be a matter of chance, especially at the start of your legal career. Generally, it will relate to what case/work is available when you get there. As you grow, I would advise trying to work with people who you get along with professionally, because this is probably going to influence how much you like your job and how long you are likely to stick around. All of this is based on a limited perspective, but it has shaped why I am where I am, and the work I try to take on.

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Re: Fascinating thread on life in biglaw on a financial forum

Postby KidStuddi » Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:57 pm

Objection wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I don't know how correct or incorrect the information is or how well I will deal with the stress or how big law will wear me down. I do know this though: Nobody in my family has had any level of career success, at least not financially, except for two uncles, who I estimate earn roughly $200k. One runs a supermarket and one works in real estate management. None of them have it easier than a big law lawyer. Both are on call 24/7, both have intense jobs with demanding clients and insane hours during particular seasons, and neither of them have exit options that are anything other than moar pie. The bottom line is that if you are happy bringing home 80k between you and your SO, then you can find a job working 9-5 and keep it from recession to recession. But if you want to be able to pay your kids' college tuition or pay for their braces, summer camps, and weddings without jeopardizing your retirement, you have to do a little more and whatever that is, it's unlikely to be soul-nourishing.


Aw, that's cute, you think big law is that job.

Talk to me after 4 years of big law when you don't have a wife to come home to, or kids (at least ones that don't mistake your wife's booty call for their dad and you for her booty call), and the only things that will listen to your sobs are TLS, your pillow, and maybe the prostitute you brought up for the evening just to have someone to talk to.

Talk to me after 5 when you're being suggested out the door and you find yourself a burnt out doc reviewing contract attorney getting paid hourly.

Talk to me after 6 when you find out that only one of your class of 50 summers is still at the firm and likely to make partner, while the most successful of the rest are desperately trying to concoct an interesting e-harmony profile to attract someone, anyone, into their web since they wasted the past 6 years in an all consuming, tedious, thankless job.


So much hyperbole and melodrama. Not everyone is built the same way and not everyone's story will end the same way.

We get that BigLaw was not for you, but from the sound of it, any career that requires abnormal amounts of dedication would not have been for you. You might place a premium on being able to chillax with your bros every weekend, but that's not everyone's goal in life. I can only imagine what your posts would sound like had you signed up for a surgical residency (think five years of BigLaw hours, but you're standing on your feet 75% of the day and making 40-55k).




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