How to target BigFed

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Anonymous User
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How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 3:02 am

I just finished my 1L year at CCN and my hope is for a job with a financial regulator (FDIC, OCC, CFPB, ect..) when I graduate. I am spending my summer at one of those agencies and hope to intern there during my 2L year. Obviously these agencies have a limited amount of spots in their honors programs so I don't want to leave my self with no options. I plan on trying to secure a firm job for next summer and hopefully do well enough to receive an offer. I would then apply for a few of the honors programs and if nothing comes of them I have an offer to fall back on. I know I am getting way ahead of myself, and getting an offer from OCI is no guarantee, but I would like to know if this is a realistic goal and if anyone has been in this situation. Would I have enough time to receive a decision from the agencies before I accept the offer, or would I have to make a decision before hearing back from the agencies. Thanks for the help.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 11:00 am

At least at my V25 firm, you have to give them an answer by November 1. So that gives you a little time. Some people on these forums have said that you can get an extension. But that's all I know.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue May 21, 2013 11:06 am

Most of the Honors programs seem to extend offers around the end of November/December (sometimes later, especially when budget stuff is uncertain). I believe NALP regulations say that if you get an offer from a firm, and you're waiting to hear back from a government/public interest employer, you can get an extension on your deadline. Of course, then you have to tell them that you're considering another job, but I'm not sure how you can get around that.

(Or there's the option of accepting the firm's offer and reneging if you get the agency job. Dunno how people here would react to that - there are a lot of people who say that if you get government work for the summer and then a paid/firm gig comes along, renege on the government work, but I don't know if they'd say that for the opposite or for permanent employment.)

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 12:09 pm

How many new graduates are BigFed agencies hiring these days? What numbers would you need from a t14to have a shot/ other experience?

Thanks!

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The Brainalist
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby The Brainalist » Tue May 21, 2013 12:29 pm

Due to the sequester, you should anticipate very few. While agencies have typically kept the honors/slip programs going even when there were hiring freezes, the sequester is different insofar as agencies have to find ways to cut their budgets. For a lot of agencies that means furloughs, so they can't very well hire new attorneys while furloughing the ones they have and royally pissing them off.

When they are hiring, the competitiveness will vary a lot between agencies. In addition, agencies can be somewhat specialized, so you can be unwittingly out of the running for some agencies do to lack of any background in the regulatory area in which they operate. Best thing is to think about which practice area you want to work in first, then think about what opportunities there are on the public and private side. Once you figure that out, you'll be able to get an idea of what you'd need to get into the public side of the practice area.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 12:32 pm

The Brainalist wrote:Due to the sequester, you should anticipate very few. While agencies have typically kept the honors/slip programs going even when there were hiring freezes, the sequester is different insofar as agencies have to find ways to cut their budgets. For a lot of agencies that means furloughs, so they can't very well hire new attorneys while furloughing the ones they have and royally pissing them off.

When they are hiring, the competitiveness will vary a lot between agencies. In addition, agencies can be somewhat specialized, so you can be unwittingly out of the running for some agencies do to lack of any background in the regulatory area in which they operate. Best thing is to think about which practice area you want to work in first, then think about what opportunities there are on the public and private side. Once you figure that out, you'll be able to get an idea of what you'd need to get into the public side of the practice area.


Thanks for the reply, is there any hard data? I sort of agree with your sequester analysis, but I have parents who work for the Feds and they said despite some people being sequestered it's tricky because the same agencies are still hiring. The sequestering is occuring only from some budgets such as DOD intra office while other funding sources are still flowing for new hires (think mostly engineers, computer scientists etc...) That's why I was curious about actual numbers.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 12:36 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for the reply, is there any hard data? I sort of agree with your sequester analysis, but I have parents who work for the Feds and they said despite some people being sequestered it's tricky because the same agencies are still hiring. The sequestering is occuring only from some budgets such as DOD intra office while other funding sources are still flowing for new hires (think mostly engineers, computer scientists etc...) That's why I was curious about actual numbers.

Ya bro each fed agency publishes HR data weekly

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue May 21, 2013 12:47 pm

Just some examples (not specific to financial regulation, sorry): this past year, both DOL and DHS received 1000+ applications, and while it's not absolutely clear how many they hired, for DHS I think it was max 8-12, and for DOL - well, it's not clear anyone was hired. According to the AZ Honors Handbook, they didn't hire anyone for the 2012 program; in previous years they seem to have hired 5-8? The Dept of the Interior hires no more than 4, and they also received 1000+ applications last year. I think the NLRB got 400+, so much better odds! The FCC gets 750-1000 applications; I don't know how many they hire, but the GC's office is 60 attorneys, so I can't imagine it's huge numbers. Last year the DOJ Honors Program hired 13 people for the Antitrust division (no idea how many applied). The FTC hired 8 people out of over 700 applications. In 2012, the COC hired 12 out of over 900 applicants (and they note this was an untypically large class).

I'm afraid I don't know much about the specifics for the financial regulation agencies, and my impression is some of them may have a more reliable summer internship -> honors attorney position path than others. I think a lot of the Antitrust people had interned with DOJ Antitrust, for instance, and have heard the same for FTC. (Similarly, I have a friend who went from FCC internship to honors attorney there.)

The thing that's tough is that numbers are important but not everything - you need to have compelling experience. I have also heard people who do Honors hiring say that how much your school rank matters compared to your grades/class rank can depend on the individual doing the hiring (e.g. one year the hiring person might want only T14 people, another year a different person might prefer top 5% from a TT/TTT over a median or below T6, that kind of thing).

(I pulled a lot of this from the AZ Honors Handbook. Also, you can stalk linkedin to some extent by searching Honors Attorney + whatever agency, to get a glimpse at the qualifications of some recent hires. Results on that vary, but are better than nothing.)

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 2:08 pm

OP anon here. Do you guys think this is a decent strategy. Would there be any consequence from reneging an offer from a firm if I plan on spending my career in government. Once again I know I have a year plus before I hopefully have to worry about this, but it is never to early to make a game plan.

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The Brainalist
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby The Brainalist » Tue May 21, 2013 5:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
The Brainalist wrote:Due to the sequester, you should anticipate very few. While agencies have typically kept the honors/slip programs going even when there were hiring freezes, the sequester is different insofar as agencies have to find ways to cut their budgets. For a lot of agencies that means furloughs, so they can't very well hire new attorneys while furloughing the ones they have and royally pissing them off.

When they are hiring, the competitiveness will vary a lot between agencies. In addition, agencies can be somewhat specialized, so you can be unwittingly out of the running for some agencies do to lack of any background in the regulatory area in which they operate. Best thing is to think about which practice area you want to work in first, then think about what opportunities there are on the public and private side. Once you figure that out, you'll be able to get an idea of what you'd need to get into the public side of the practice area.


Thanks for the reply, is there any hard data? I sort of agree with your sequester analysis, but I have parents who work for the Feds and they said despite some people being sequestered it's tricky because the same agencies are still hiring. The sequestering is occuring only from some budgets such as DOD intra office while other funding sources are still flowing for new hires (think mostly engineers, computer scientists etc...) That's why I was curious about actual numbers.


This is all speculative. There is no way to know for sure how the entry level hiring will look until at least the Fall. I doubt that even the HR people at the agencies know at this point.

It is useless to think of BigFed as BigFed. Each agency is different in terms of how they handle their budget. Some will handle the cut by cutting costs, some will furlough, some will reduce workforce by holding of on making new hires. The thing is that this is worse than all the budget freezes in the past, since it requires actual cutting. For the last couple years, before cutting, the honors/slip hiring has consistently diminished. It will only get worse with the about 20% cuts across the board.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 5:52 pm

OP anon here once again. What would be the best practice area for someone in BigLaw who wants to move to a financial regulator in a few years?

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Postby Myself » Tue May 21, 2013 6:17 pm

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Last edited by Myself on Wed Nov 20, 2013 12:48 am, edited 2 times in total.

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quakeroats
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby quakeroats » Tue May 21, 2013 6:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP anon here once again. What would be the best practice area for someone in BigLaw who wants to move to a financial regulator in a few years?


Whatever your preferred regulator does. Capital Markets, Financial Regulation of any kind, Asset Management, Derivatives, etc.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 7:44 pm

ajax adonis wrote:Hiring in big fed can be incredibly variable and will differ so much from agency to agency. And even within the same agency, it can differ from year to year because of the vagaries involves (e.g., different hiring attorneys, different budgets, different experiences with past honors attorneys, etc., etc.). Therefore, if you're going to target BigFed, it's extremely difficult because it is a moving target. I personally wouldn't set your sights on BigFed at the expense of more traditional modes of employment (i.e., BigLaw). Get the best grades you can, get into extracurriculars that interest you and will be useful in the future, and just apply for BigFed kind of "as you go." Don't shoot for the moon and end up with only a bunch of spades.


So would applying for an honors program during 3L year with an offer from SA be a good plan, or would that be to risky and possibly leave me with a rescinded offer? I know these are just hypothetical but I'm curious to see if anyone who wants bigfed has done this before and what their results were.

LawIdiot86
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby LawIdiot86 » Wed May 22, 2013 9:11 am

The OCC and FDIC make their offers around Thanksgiving or later. The SEC and CFTC don't have formal programs, so it's whenever an office or division decides to hire someone. I don't know the FRB or CFPB timing. I don't think FHFA ever hires new grads. Between all of those agencies, there are maybe 20 openings for new lawyers. As far as laterals, they tend to like V50s with a preference to V25s. If you're at CCN, you have a really good shot at a V25 or better and you don't want to mess that up by invoking NALP's public sector deadline option. Doing that will just piss your firm off and they might assign practice groups on a first-come basis. To know which practice group, you need to decide on a regulator. Doing corporate lines you up for CorpFin at the SEC, FINRA's broker reg and NFA reg. Doing IM lines you up for SEC IM , CFTC DSIO (and maybe one person in the FRB). Otherwise, things like SEC TM or the bank regulators map to financial institutions/reg practice groups. Try to get a DC firm so that you can network as a first year.

LawIdiot86
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby LawIdiot86 » Wed May 22, 2013 9:13 am

Anonymous User wrote:
ajax adonis wrote:Hiring in big fed can be incredibly variable and will differ so much from agency to agency. And even within the same agency, it can differ from year to year because of the vagaries involves (e.g., different hiring attorneys, different budgets, different experiences with past honors attorneys, etc., etc.). Therefore, if you're going to target BigFed, it's extremely difficult because it is a moving target. I personally wouldn't set your sights on BigFed at the expense of more traditional modes of employment (i.e., BigLaw). Get the best grades you can, get into extracurriculars that interest you and will be useful in the future, and just apply for BigFed kind of "as you go." Don't shoot for the moon and end up with only a bunch of spades.


So would applying for an honors program during 3L year with an offer from SA be a good plan, or would that be to risky and possibly leave me with a rescinded offer? I know these are just hypothetical but I'm curious to see if anyone who wants bigfed has done this before and what their results were.


They won't rescind, they'll just be grumpy with you. It usually won't work, so why bite the hand that feeds you?

LawIdiot86
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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby LawIdiot86 » Wed May 22, 2013 9:25 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP anon here once again. What would be the best practice area for someone in BigLaw who wants to move to a financial regulator in a few years?

It depends. The gold standard would be Davis Polk's Dodd-Frank group, Weil's financial reform group, Cleary's financial institutions group, and Debevoise's financial institutions or IM groups. Outside of those, Wilkie and Dechert for IM, Gibson Dunn litigation, Latham's banking, Cravath, and BuckleySandler's consumer finance would probably give the best exit options into bigfed financial. I have heard good things about exits at A&P and Wilmer to the agencies.

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Re: How to target BigFed

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 22, 2013 5:58 pm

LawIdiot86 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP anon here once again. What would be the best practice area for someone in BigLaw who wants to move to a financial regulator in a few years?

It depends. The gold standard would be Davis Polk's Dodd-Frank group, Weil's financial reform group, Cleary's financial institutions group, and Debevoise's financial institutions or IM groups. Outside of those, Wilkie and Dechert for IM, Gibson Dunn litigation, Latham's banking, Cravath, and BuckleySandler's consumer finance would probably give the best exit options into bigfed financial. I have heard good things about exits at A&P and Wilmer to the agencies.


Thanks for the helpful post. Still not sure about how to handle 3L year but for now my goal is to just get an SA and try to make myself an attractive candidate for these agencies in the future.




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