Switching Law Firms

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Anonymous User
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Switching Law Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 03, 2014 3:43 pm

Pretty sensitive topic here, so can't share too many details, but had general Q for those who are currently working. I've only ever wanted to be a lawyer in a specific niche group, and went to a big firm that has this group, though its relatively small (in my office at least). But, due to bad luck, lots of people in my class year are interested in this group (which usually isn't the case). Having a lot of trouble getting exposure to the group since there simply isn't enough work to go to all the folks interested. I constantly express my interest, stay in touch with the group, and all my work has received very good reviews. But I just don't have enough exposure, haven't gotten to work with most of the people in the group, and feel like I'm not getting into the group simply due to lack of facetime and exposure. I have wanted to practice this niche area ever since I first applied to law school, loved studying the area in school, and loved my projects in this area in my firm.

So my Q is, if I don't get into this group, you think its possible to switch firms after one year? On one hand, I'm glad to know I could fall back on other, larger and more general groups, and I know I'm lucky to at least have a job. But on the other hand, I've only ever wanted to be an attorney in that niche area, and everything I have done since law school began has only strengthened that feeling.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273475
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Switching Law Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 03, 2014 6:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Pretty sensitive topic here, so can't share too many details, but had general Q for those who are currently working. I've only ever wanted to be a lawyer in a specific niche group, and went to a big firm that has this group, though its relatively small (in my office at least). But, due to bad luck, lots of people in my class year are interested in this group (which usually isn't the case). Having a lot of trouble getting exposure to the group since there simply isn't enough work to go to all the folks interested. I constantly express my interest, stay in touch with the group, and all my work has received very good reviews. But I just don't have enough exposure, haven't gotten to work with most of the people in the group, and feel like I'm not getting into the group simply due to lack of facetime and exposure. I have wanted to practice this niche area ever since I first applied to law school, loved studying the area in school, and loved my projects in this area in my firm.

So my Q is, if I don't get into this group, you think its possible to switch firms after one year? On one hand, I'm glad to know I could fall back on other, larger and more general groups, and I know I'm lucky to at least have a job. But on the other hand, I've only ever wanted to be an attorney in that niche area, and everything I have done since law school began has only strengthened that feeling.


The lateral market is pretty active right now and I have experience lateraling recently. It seems that firms want people with experience in the specific area when they are looking for lateral hires so if you have the resume lines and can spin whatever practice area experience into looking like you are focused on that area, then you can absolutely lateral after 1 year. The sweet spot really is 2-5 years however.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273475
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Switching Law Firms

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Feb 03, 2014 8:52 pm

Problem is, I've only been at my firm for a few months so it's not like I actually have experience in my niche area yet. And that's sort of why I would consider switching firms, to get into that area in the first place. Its not like my resume indicates a background in that area (I went to law school straight from undergrad). All I have is my 100% interest in that area, my curiosity and willingness to learn the law in that area, etc. I'm afraid that, after 2-5 years of general litigation, you can't just lateral and end up in a niche group that you aren't well versed in (since I would have been on the outside looking in for 2-5 years)




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