New associate banter

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romothesavior
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Re: New associate banter

Postby romothesavior » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:58 pm

Big Shrimpin wrote:
seespotrun wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:Billed 450 one month. It sucked.

How?


I was kinda wondering this too. Unless I was block billing, I don't think I could physically do this.

I think I'm calling BS

DwightSchruteFarms
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Re: New associate banter

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:07 pm

romothesavior wrote:
Big Shrimpin wrote:
seespotrun wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:Billed 450 one month. It sucked.

How?


I was kinda wondering this too. Unless I was block billing, I don't think I could physically do this.

I think I'm calling BS


Obviously BSing. I don't even spend that much time in a month awake.

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Old Gregg
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Old Gregg » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:16 pm

I don't really care (and I'm not going to provide specifics just to support this; not worth it). And what's sad is that in terms of total billables, I'm probably solidly in the middle of the pack at my firm.

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seespotrun
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Re: New associate banter

Postby seespotrun » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:20 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:I don't really care. And what's sad is that in terms of total billables, I'm probably solidly in the middle of the pack at my firm.

I wasn't calling BS. I honestly want to know how you pulled that off without perishing. I've pulled a couple 100+ weeks, but I cannot imagine pulling four of those weeks in a row.

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Old Gregg
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Old Gregg » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:21 pm

thesealocust wrote:^ you like what you do.

You're doomed.


I like what I do substantively. But I'm not sure I have what it takes to last long in the field. Being a good biglaw associate in corporate, one that lasts long and has a nice bright path into partnership, depends on so many factors outside of liking that work. I've seen some incredibly talented people who were passionate about the job not make it. And all of them worked harder and were way better than I am.

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Old Gregg
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Old Gregg » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:25 pm

seespotrun wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:I don't really care. And what's sad is that in terms of total billables, I'm probably solidly in the middle of the pack at my firm.

I wasn't calling BS. I honestly want to know how you pulled that off without perishing. I've pulled a couple 100+ weeks, but I cannot imagine pulling four of those weeks in a row.


Thanks. It's hard to describe. As a corporate junior, you spend less time doing discreet tasks and more time just managing a process and pushing things along. It's easier when there are multiple junior associates and you can put them in charge on multiple different processes. But when you're the only junior on a deal, you end up getting all of the process. For massive company deals that are really complex and on a very short time-frame, this stuff can take all day. I'd literally take calls early in the morning (first with client, then with other side, then with client again, then with internal specialists, then with special counsel) that would last late into the day. These calls would generate to-dos that would last well into the night. Rinse and repeat for three weeks. Towards closing, it was basically than and a ton more. I didn't get sleep.

I think I gained at least 15 lbs that month and my complexion was akin to an un-masked Darth Vader.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Big Shrimpin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 11:17 pm

seespotrun wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:I don't really care. And what's sad is that in terms of total billables, I'm probably solidly in the middle of the pack at my firm.

I wasn't calling BS. I honestly want to know how you pulled that off without perishing. I've pulled a couple 100+ weeks, but I cannot imagine pulling four of those weeks in a row.


Yo SSR - I saw Louis tonight (yes, I got out of work before 9PM). Consummate awesomeness.

NewSouthernAssociate
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Re: New associate banter

Postby NewSouthernAssociate » Fri Oct 04, 2013 12:35 am

IAFG wrote:
NewSouthernAssociate wrote:Is anyone else having trouble delegating work to paralegals? I had two last week say they were too busy to help. Maybe they really were too busy, but I think they just don't see me as someone they work under yet... Advice?

What do you have for them that your secretary can't do? There are a list of things I was told to give to paralegals but I haven't hit on any of them yet.


I had a third paralegal say no earlier this week--she at least seemed legitimately busy. They've all been things that the partners have told me to ask the paralegals to do: prepare an affidavit, find something in discovery, and prepare a subpoena. If this continues I think I'll have to ask a partner for advice.

Unrelated question--how often is it acceptable to use the Westlaw hotline for help? I keep getting impossible research questions. At least it makes me feel better when the Westlaw people can't find anything either.

Anonymous User
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 04, 2013 12:38 am

When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Big Shrimpin » Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:54 am

Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the physical stamina and mental toughness to do so.

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ragelion
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Re: New associate banter

Postby ragelion » Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:12 am

Big Shrimpin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the Adderall to do so.

Uh huh.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Big Shrimpin » Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:41 am

ragelion wrote:
Big Shrimpin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the Adderall to do so.

Uh huh.


Yeah, PEDs seem to do the trick. Makes me tso jelly when I have a mt everest of work to do.

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Joe Quincy
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Joe Quincy » Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:09 am

NewSouthernAssociate wrote:
IAFG wrote:
NewSouthernAssociate wrote:Is anyone else having trouble delegating work to paralegals? I had two last week say they were too busy to help. Maybe they really were too busy, but I think they just don't see me as someone they work under yet... Advice?

What do you have for them that your secretary can't do? There are a list of things I was told to give to paralegals but I haven't hit on any of them yet.


I had a third paralegal say no earlier this week--she at least seemed legitimately busy. They've all been things that the partners have told me to ask the paralegals to do: prepare an affidavit, find something in discovery, and prepare a subpoena. If this continues I think I'll have to ask a partner for advice.

Unrelated question--how often is it acceptable to use the Westlaw hotline for help? I keep getting impossible research questions. At least it makes me feel better when the Westlaw people can't find anything either.


Sounds like you're getting played. Are you going in all "sorry I have to ask you to do this?" Next time tell them politely that partner X instructed you to give it to them...so when will they have time to complete it so you can let X know when to expect it.

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Old Gregg
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Old Gregg » Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:27 am

Big Shrimpin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the physical stamina and mental toughness to do so.


What do you mean by "block bill?" If by that you mean I enter multiple tasks under a single time entry, then yes I block bill and everyone should block bill.

phonepro
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Re: New associate banter

Postby phonepro » Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:58 am

I billed 400+ hours as a paralegal one month. So I dont think hes BSing.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: New associate banter

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:04 am

To the paralegal problems person - yeah as someone said, you've got to name drop - I'm working with "X" and we need this done blah blah blah.

If they say "I'm busy" say "ok, so when can you get it done?"

Law school doesn't teach you dick about management, but lawyers with assistants and paralegals are managers whether they view themselves that way or not.

Also, you're brand new, no one will take you seriously at first, not even your secretary. Don't be a pushover now or else they'll never respect you.
Last edited by NotMyRealName09 on Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

NotMyRealName09
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Re: New associate banter

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:04 am

Fresh Prince wrote:
Big Shrimpin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the physical stamina and mental toughness to do so.


What do you mean by "block bill?" If by that you mean I enter multiple tasks under a single time entry, then yes I block bill and everyone should block bill.


Some clients don't allow it. They suck.

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thesealocust
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Re: New associate banter

Postby thesealocust » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:04 am

phonepro wrote:I billed 400+ hours as a paralegal one month. So I dont think hes BSing.


That has to be, like, perilously close to the point where you earned more for the month than a first year associate... especially if you handicap for taxes... :lol:

My paralegals love to tease me that long nights mean more money for them and the same/less per hour for me (though obviously we're still doing similar work and I'm getting a comically larger amount overall).

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Big Shrimpin » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:06 am

Fresh Prince wrote:
Big Shrimpin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:When I was on a callback at Debevoise, a midlevel told me he had billed 525 hours one month that year, which is billing 17 hours a day for 31 straight days. Sounded like bullshit to me.


On a block bill, it's possible, but I can't imagine there are many humans out there with the physical stamina and mental toughness to do so.


What do you mean by "block bill?" If by that you mean I enter multiple tasks under a single time entry, then yes I block bill and everyone should block bill.


Basically, yes.

Some clients require itemization which is a colossal inefficiency and makes maximizing billables a little tougher.

Anonymous User
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:16 am

thesealocust wrote:
phonepro wrote:I billed 400+ hours as a paralegal one month. So I dont think hes BSing.


That has to be, like, perilously close to the point where you earned more for the month than a first year associate... especially if you handicap for taxes... :lol:

My paralegals love to tease me that long nights mean more money for them and the same/less per hour for me (though obviously we're still doing similar work and I'm getting a comically larger amount overall).


At my firm, our more senior paralegals make even more than senior associates. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the same at other firms. So I wouldn't necessarily laugh at their pay. A few of them make double my salary.

But also, they're worth their weight in gold. Easily some of the most valuable people on my teams.

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Joe Quincy
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Joe Quincy » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:At my firm, our more senior paralegals make even more than senior associates. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the same at other firms. So I wouldn't necessarily laugh at their pay. A few of them make double my salary.

But also, they're worth their weight in gold. Easily some of the most valuable people on my teams.


Is that a big firm? I can't imagine a paralegal making $300K+ because there is no way their billing rate can be high enough to break even on that...no matter how great they are. Salary.com suggests that even paralegal managers are unlikely to break $120K...the 90th percentile is $119,900.

In DC, it looks like paralegals at the big firms are unlikely to break $70K...at least in base salary.

Edit: I could see this happening at small firms as, quite frankly, they are probably more valuable resources. They are more likely to stick around versus young associates who are going to flee eventually.
Last edited by Joe Quincy on Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:33 am, edited 3 times in total.

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thesealocust
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Re: New associate banter

Postby thesealocust » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:27 am

Yeah, sounds like a firm with a more compressed salary range. Where I work paralegals start at like a quarter to a third of what an associate makes, but do get overtime.

Anonymous User
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:47 am

Same anon as above with the high-paying paralegals, my firm is a V10.

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Joe Quincy
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Joe Quincy » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:49 am

Anonymous User wrote:Same anon as above with the high-paying paralegals, my firm is a V10.


Then something is drastically off in your firm. No paralegal makes double what a first-year does in a big firm. Let alone more than a senior associate. At least not in base pay...I could see some making $$$ with overtime if they are also billing like 3,000 hours. But even then, they'd have to be really really valuable for a firm to just not hire more paralegals.

I'm not saying they aren't worth it. I'm saying the economics just don't work out. Not only would the firm lose money on their billing rate, it'd be cheaper to simply have young associates do the work since the market already demands they be overpaid in relation to what they bring in. And there would never be the future prospect of them bringing in way more than their pay like there are with 4th+ year attorneys.
Last edited by Joe Quincy on Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:55 am, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
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Re: New associate banter

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:54 am

Joe Quincy wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Same anon as above with the high-paying paralegals, my firm is a V10.


Then something is drastically off in your firm. No paralegal makes double what a first-year does in a big firm. Let alone more than a senior associate. At least not in base pay...I could see some making $$$ with overtime if they are also billing like 3,000 hours. But even then, they'd have to be really really valuable for a firm to just not hire more paralegals.


Yeah, nothing's "drastically off in [my] firm." Not all paralegals here make that. And most of the paralegals make below $100,000 (though some top ones still close to it when you include overtime). I was talking about our most senior paralegals.




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