Hard to decide between lit and corp?

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Stinson
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Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 12:01 am

Re: Hard to decide between lit and corp?

Postby Stinson » Sat Jun 08, 2013 11:13 am

The point about more predictable hours in lit is true so far as I can tell; it's the impression of pretty much every lawyer at the firm for which I'm working. Clients like results, judges like schedules. There are exceptions, but that's generally how it is.

I'm mostly posting to complicate the whole "litigators are adversarial tigers" view a little. It's true that one-off litigations are quite often like this. If you smash someone with your car, they're not going to like you, but that isn't generally the kind of case for which it makes sense to hire a biglaw firm. Complex biglaw litigation often involves two or more repeat players - banks, insurance, companies, big tech companies, etc - who of course care about the litigation, but the litigation isn't the only thing in the world for them. They may be opponents one day and wind up on the same side the next, doubly so for the attorneys involved. There are reputations to be maintained.

When I was in law school I had a complex litigation course with a Cravath partner who mostly handled big class actions for large clients. He emphasized that, while the tiger personality no doubt exists in litigation, in big complicated cases cooperation and negotiation among the attorneys were absolutely key to just logistically getting the thing done. If you have simultaneous litigation in twenty states and hundreds of depositions to take and millions of documents to obtain through discovery, fighting tooth and nail on every point and being a dick to the other side doesn't make sense. You give on some things and you get on others. Ego doesn't equal effectiveness in many cases.

Just my two cents.

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Tom Joad
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Re: Hard to decide between lit and corp?

Postby Tom Joad » Sat Jun 08, 2013 2:23 pm

Bronte wrote:
Tom Joad wrote:
Bronte wrote:Transactional work, of course, has a number of advantages. Better exit options...

But is this really true? Sure you can go in house after doing corporate but what happens when your employer goes under or you get laid off?


Well, this is again something that you hear said regularly IRL and on this forum. But I've always just taken it on faith. Corporations going under doesn't strike me as something that would be a major factor, but maybe I'm wrong.

I think it depends on what kind of in house job you get, but corporations of all sizes merge and restructure all the time. Legal department seems like an obvious thing to cut when times are lean since so much of it can be farmed out.

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thesealocust
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Re: Hard to decide between lit and corp?

Postby thesealocust » Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:10 pm

Tom Joad wrote:I think it depends on what kind of in house job you get, but corporations of all sizes merge and restructure all the time. Legal department seems like an obvious thing to cut when times are lean since so much of it can be farmed out.


Obviously legal departments aren't immune to staff pruning, but let's be realistic - nobody fires an employee who earns a salary at a rate of maybe $100/hour plus overhead then farms the work out to firms charging $300 to $1,000 per hour in order to save money.

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sikemenow
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Re: Hard to decide between lit and corp?

Postby sikemenow » Sat Jun 08, 2013 4:32 pm

Curious if perspectives like these affect the discussions of biglaw exit options and going in-house...

http://www.bcgsearch.com/m/article/6063 ... -In-House/

http://wisconsinlawreview.org/wp-conten ... 7-Wald.pdf




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