What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.

Which job offer should I accept?

Dream job but as Staff Attorney
3
10%
Damn fine Midlaw Associate
28
90%
 
Total votes: 31

Anonymous User
Posts: 273537
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 11, 2013 4:29 pm

Me: 2013 grad, T20 slightly above median, strong prior WE, solid SA, T10 UG, NE corridor-focused.

Midlaw: Respected firm in major (non-NYC) NE market, not main office, pay one tier below biglaw, transactional niche that is somewhat interesting but not what I know I want to do, 2nd choice city.

Staff Atty: Biglaw, different major (non-NYC) NE market, not main office, pay: ???, 1st choice city, my preferred transactional niche, a top firm in this practice area.

I get that taking a staff attorney job comes with severe limitations and I'm not counting on transitioning to a full associate, but it's exactly what I want to do, where I want to do it. I'd be happy to practice for a couple years and try to move out of law into that business.

But the midlaw gig really has no drawbacks and it is an actual associate spot where I could see myself being as happy as any lawyer could be.

What would you do in my shoes?

lolwat
Posts: 604
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:30 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby lolwat » Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:40 pm

i'd take midlaw

maybe find out as much as possible about the staff attorney job, but i can't see it being better

maybe also talk to them and see if you can turn that staff atty job into a full associate job... i mean, if you have that offer already they seem interested, so if the options for them become (1) lose you or (2) hire you as a full associate, they may very well do #2.

and of course if that fails, you still have the midlaw job to go to!

MayomiSanchez
Posts: 23
Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2011 4:34 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby MayomiSanchez » Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:57 pm

This does not seem like a close decision to me. Midlaw.

anonymous2012
Posts: 82
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:04 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby anonymous2012 » Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:01 pm

Midlaw and it's not close.

But for arguments sake, define this midlaw. NLJ 250?

User avatar
NinerFan
Posts: 482
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:51 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby NinerFan » Tue Jun 11, 2013 7:18 pm

Staff attorneys, based on everything I hear, have little upward potential and does not look impressive on a resume regardless of the firm you're at.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273537
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 11, 2013 8:03 pm

OP here. Thanks for the responses. I think I knew this was the case, but I just needed to make sure I wasn't dead wrong and would be throwing away a great opportunity in the Staff Atty. job.

anonymous2012 wrote: But for arguments sake, define this midlaw. NLJ 250?


Yes, NLJ 250. Top half if memory serves.

lolwat wrote:maybe also talk to them and see if you can turn that staff atty job into a full associate job... i mean, if you have that offer already they seem interested, so if the options for them become (1) lose you or (2) hire you as a full associate, they may very well do #2.

and of course if that fails, you still have the midlaw job to go to!


Nice idea. I'll try this angle.

synergy
Posts: 33
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 5:43 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby synergy » Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:05 am

I think what people are neglecting to consider here is that the duties for the position of "Staff Attorney" in big law firms have traditionally consisted almost entirely of doc review. Judging by how OP has described the position as a specific niche practice, there's a chance that this position isn't the doc review job most of us think of when we hear staff attorney but instead might be basically an associate with less pay/hours. At my firm, the staff attorneys do the same work as the associates and don't do any doc review really. I think it's a bit premature to say the midlaw position for sure without at least hearing about some of the more specific details, or even the general details like the pay for the staff attorney position.

As an aside, OP would you care to share how you were able to snag 2 pretty good gigs like these at this stage of the game? Particularly with (no offense) only okay credentials?

lolwat
Posts: 604
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:30 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby lolwat » Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:49 am

I didn't neglect to consider that when I suggested midlaw, but it seemed like a closer choice to me than some of the other posters suggested though. The problem is with a staff attorney job I would always wonder whether I'm getting as much responsibility/good work as I could be, and if the firm happens to "have to" lay off anyone, whether I'd be the first to go over full associates. I'd also have to understand that I'll never really get anywhere and probably have a lot less exit options down the road. Just not worth it.

bbmic45
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby bbmic45 » Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:16 am

Take off them rose-colored glasses. Midlaw spot.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273537
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: What would you take? Midlaw vs. Staff Atty.

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jun 13, 2013 8:57 pm

OP again. To be fair, I don't actually have one of the offers yet. But based on the interview and the tells I got, I'm fairly confident, though I realize it can be a crapshoot. So this problem might be moot.

As for how I got here, differentiation, some development of actually applicable skills, focus on jobs in which I have an actual interest, a LOT of WORK on interviewing to build up narrative, confidence, spinning, presentation, etc. Also a ton of networking, some connections that hit, and a fair amount of proximate luck. Sort of abstract, I know, but don't want to outself.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.