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juzam_djinn

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby juzam_djinn » Fri Sep 26, 2014 8:08 pm

john7234797 wrote:
baal hadad wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Why do people choose Lit then?

Also, do the advantages to going corporate hold for firms with more respected lit practices than corporate ones, like Paul Weiss.

Bc corporate isn't being a lawyer

So you trade exit options to "be a lawyer"?


y so hard to believe...if you wanted to "be a lawyer" you don't care about trading away non-lit exit options

smallfirmassociate

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby smallfirmassociate » Fri Sep 26, 2014 8:25 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
smallfirmassociate wrote:
NotMyRealName09 wrote:Yeah probably. I've tangled with some good ones with good claims who we settle with, and I've dealt with some amazingly shitty, incompetent ones who probably see more court in a year than I will in my life. Quantity and quality of experience are factors too. DUI trial experience is valuable, but that experience may not translate to dealing with a more complex, higher dollar value commercial cases. Small-law (I don't like "shitlaw") may deal in more high-volume cases and get more day-in day-out court experience, but they may not have the resources to prosecute larger, more complex cases. There's a sliding scale, that's all I'm saying.


Fair enough. My point was only that, in many cases, courtroom experience isn't a good measure of courtroom skill. One of the most prolific criminal defense attorneys in my area is also uniformly regarded as one of the worst, if not the absolute worst. The best is a guy who has a trial maybe once every 3-4 years.

I'm guessing I am much more skilled in the courtroom than the vast majority of biglaw associates, but who knows. I've been surprised before. I've surprised others before. I've just learned to never underestimate other attorneys, overestimate other attorneys, or get caught up on who's "better" than others. It matters a little bit, but unlike the movies, lawyers don't really win (civil) cases. Granted, some can lose cases.

A little courtroom experience is important, but the more I practice, the more I feel like the important skills are either something you're born with or something you're not. Debate team, moot court, public speaking experience, all of that can polish a turd a little bit, but it doesn't make a good trial attorney. If someone has "it," he can walk out of law school, or out of three years in biglaw, and hold his own in the courtroom with some minimal training/experience.


I'm not up on my Sun Tzu, but I'm pretty sure he said something like "make your opponent underestimate your strength, then kill them when they act on it." I think he also said "kick ass, and then, only if there is time, take names." I think we both agree that we'd rather not let them see us coming.


Yes, I believe he said both of those things. I also believe he said trial tactics are for amateurs, motions practice is for professionals.

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:07 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
brazleton wrote:this circle-jerk is awesome.

1) many biglaw firms have armies of contract attorneys doing the doc review, so the junior associates are...not

2) If you would like to be an attorney for 25-30 years, what's wrong with slowly building up each component skill of the job? So you, third year shit law attorney would "smoke" a 3rd year BL associate in court. Who cares? He'll smoke you in 10 years (when he's probably lateraled to your market), make more money doing it and have a better grasp on how to organize a large complex litigation, because he's done all aspects of it.

3) In general, how about a little debate on this site, instead of the DF makes stupid claim --> people lap it up --> rinse --> repeat


1) Even as a first year, I'm not really allowed to doc review on most cases because I cost too much. But it's still all just legal research and writing and then fact collection and analysis. Most juniors aren't even allowed to second chair depos. Most mid levels aren't allowed to first chair, and senior associates are barely allowed to first chair shit tier witnesses.

2) Because we won't get 25 year in big law. We'll get AT BEST 8 year. And then WE drop into his level, not the other way around.

There is a reason why lit exit options suck. We are cannon fodder for partners. Someone to do the bitchwork.


Bolded is spot on. It definitely isn't mostly doc review/non-substantive experience, but you'd better like writing memos and sections of briefs and spending your life on WL/Lexis. And getting binders of cases made. If anything, doc review can be a breather when you're burnt out otherwise, because it's much easier billables than research/writing.

Getting on a BigLaw trial team is interesting inasmuch as you get to watch the senior associates coordinate a ton of moving parts and things that go into trial outside of the courtroom that are super important (even if they're not the ones who get to argue or do depos or anything like that). But you're not going to do anything meaningful as a junior -- you're going to help organize exhibits and designate depositions and make powerpoints and spreadsheets. If there's a mock jury/mock judge presentation, you'll get to help out with that in a fairly insubstantial way. It's still a really cool experience, though, even if it will destroy any semblance of a life you may have had. And then they'll probably settle at the last minute.

Cogburn87

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Cogburn87 » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote: It's still a really cool experience, though, even if it will destroy any semblance of a life you may have had. And then they'll probably settle at the last minute.

Steve McQueen was cool. Futilely putting together binders at 11:30PM on a Tuesday in your shitty interior office? Not so much.

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:33 pm

Cogburn87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote: It's still a really cool experience, though, even if it will destroy any semblance of a life you may have had. And then they'll probably settle at the last minute.

Steve McQueen was cool. Futilely putting together binders at 11:30PM on a Tuesday in your shitty interior office? Not so much.


Should've clarified. It's more interesting than sitting in the same shitty office until 11:30PM on a Tuesday night on Lexis/WL. Which are 90% of Tuesday nights. And then you still have to do binders anyway because god forbid someone read a .pdf.

Seriously, what is BigLaw's obsession with binders? I'm pretty sure it's just as bad with the damn binders in corporate/transactional. Are those at least useful?

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 10:03 pm

Uhh...what is going on ITT?

I'm an associate at Quinn and always thought the "you get more experience" thing was total crap until reading this.

DF is it true you're not even allowed to second chair a depo as a first year? That seems like bullshit. There's a guy in my office that first-chaired 3 depos after 10 months at the firm. I don't think I know a second year that hasn't at least second chaired.

I mean, we're not delivering the closing at Apple/Samsung either, but holy crap are you allowed to do anything?

Also, lol @ "If u get courtroom experience u can smoke biglaw" if that were even remotely true the patent trololol firms would win every case just because they've been to court so often - but we know that never happens.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Sep 26, 2014 10:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

dixiecupdrinking

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Fri Sep 26, 2014 10:04 pm

So do you guys like, actually, physically, put together binders, or...?

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 10:45 pm

dixiecupdrinking wrote:So do you guys like, actually, physically, put together binders, or...?


As a restructuring associate who's had to write off time for corp / lit first- and second-years because I knew the client would complain about paying attorneys for such administrative tasks, it would not surprise me. (But then again, also not uncommon for second-years in my group to have the primary speaking roles at certain hearings.)

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 11:46 pm

dixiecupdrinking wrote:So do you guys like, actually, physically, put together binders, or...?


In my cases, I'll download and pull together whatever I need (usually cases, sometimes other documents) and then give it to a paralegal/document services to actually put it together. But it's still really annoying, and you still have to check to make sure it was put together correctly before sending it to the partner / senior / midlevel. When it takes about 5 seconds to put everything in a .zip file....

I'm sure there are times when binders are helpful, but I have't run into any yet.

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5ky

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby 5ky » Fri Sep 26, 2014 11:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:So do you guys like, actually, physically, put together binders, or...?


In my cases, I'll download and pull together whatever I need (usually cases, sometimes other documents) and then give it to a paralegal/document services to actually put it together. But it's still really annoying, and you still have to check to make sure it was put together correctly before sending it to the partner / senior / midlevel. When it takes about 5 seconds to put everything in a .zip file....

I'm sure there are times when binders are helpful, but I have't run into any yet.


Sure, I've put them together multiple times (closing sets for corp). The clients and/or banks like them for their records, and then the lawyers use them as precedent for future deals. It's convenient to have a stack of precedent in binder or CD form sitting right there.

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 26, 2014 11:59 pm

5ky wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
dixiecupdrinking wrote:So do you guys like, actually, physically, put together binders, or...?


In my cases, I'll download and pull together whatever I need (usually cases, sometimes other documents) and then give it to a paralegal/document services to actually put it together. But it's still really annoying, and you still have to check to make sure it was put together correctly before sending it to the partner / senior / midlevel. When it takes about 5 seconds to put everything in a .zip file....

I'm sure there are times when binders are helpful, but I have't run into any yet.


Sure, I've put them together multiple times (closing sets for corp). The clients and/or banks like them for their records, and then the lawyers use them as precedent for future deals. It's convenient to have a stack of precedent in binder or CD form sitting right there.


Good to know they're helpful in some practice. The only time in lit I think they might be helpful is during actual depositions when you actually need paper docs in front of you. Which brings it back to the thread topic, in that the only thing litigation junior associates are going to do is help put together the binders for the deposition :lol:.

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 27, 2014 7:54 am

How much of the "0 substantive work" bit goes away over time? Put differently, how much could I skip by clerking for a year? (For two years?)

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:10 am

Anonymous User wrote:Does anyone have a sense of where BL labor & employment fits in? Not in terms of court room experience but in terms of substantive experience generally and the ability to move on to other things from BL. I get the sense it is better than general litigation at a large firm because of the frequency with which L&E issues come up for corporations, but I would be interested to hear if anyone has any comparisons. I'm talking about large firm defense side labor & employment, which includes litigation and counseling and possibly advising on transactions.

Note: anon because I'm pretty sure this post, combined with some of my previous posts, would out me.


Also interested. Any insight?

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:37 am

Anonymous User wrote:How much of the "0 substantive work" bit goes away over time? Put differently, how much could I skip by clerking for a year? (For two years?)

Probably not that much? The issue is that biglaw cases are just not typically the kinds of cases that will go to trial. It's more like grind out discovery, position yourself well in motion practice, get a good settlement. There isn't a lot of "substantive trial experience" to go around, and when it comes up, clients aren't paying what they're paying to have some associate do it for the first time. So you won't be cross examining anyone on the stand. But sure, you'd be closer to doing depos and stuff if you clerked first.

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baal hadad

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby baal hadad » Sat Sep 27, 2014 10:40 am

Anonymous User wrote:How much of the "0 substantive work" bit goes away over time? Put differently, how much could I skip by clerking for a year? (For two years?)

Maybe they will let you write a motion to compel discovery

Very substantive

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 28, 2014 3:35 pm

somehow i remember this thread originally being "You will get 0 substantive trial experience as BL Associate"

gl lit people

- tax

Cogburn87

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Cogburn87 » Sun Sep 28, 2014 3:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:somehow i remember this thread originally being "You will get 0 substantive trial experience as BL Associate"

gl lit people

- tax


(not a real lawyer)

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 28, 2014 4:41 pm

So corporate lawyers are not really lawyers and BL lit juniors and even mid levels are not lawyers = no way to make a decent living coming out of LS and also be a lawyer

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Rahviveh

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Rahviveh » Sun Sep 28, 2014 4:49 pm

Cogburn87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:somehow i remember this thread originally being "You will get 0 substantive trial experience as BL Associate"

gl lit people

- tax


(not a real lawyer)


Describe the benefits of being a real lawyer

Cogburn87

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Cogburn87 » Sun Sep 28, 2014 5:01 pm

In my experience, there are none.

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Sep 28, 2014 5:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So corporate lawyers are not really lawyers and BL lit juniors and even mid levels are not lawyers = no way to make a decent living coming out of LS and also be a lawyer


i'm gonna bite cause this thread is technically still on-topic (although the distinction b/t lounge and on-topic has been tenuous of late). sorry in advance

"Lawyer" =/= "stylized TV trial attorney". lawyers advise and consult on the law for their clients. "Law" includes the tax codes and federal administrative regulations handed down my agencies such as the SEC. While filing papers with courts and bringing claims should be in your firm's wheelhouse and serves as an important part of "practicing law," litigation is just one approach a company or individual might take to address their business problems or civil grievances. A decent "lawyer" can navigate the legal system and advise based on the needs of the client, so just because you aren't in court doesn't mean you're not a lawyer.

it's even more lol to treat transactional attorneys as bankers or tax attorneys as accountants or reg attorneys as lobbyists, which is whats negatively implied when one says those people "aren't real lawyers." They aren't bankers they are mostly just doing legal advisory and paper pushing work for the banker (or occasionally issuer), who does financial advisor and paper pushing work for the client.

ETA: also why is your post anon

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Flips88

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Flips88 » Sun Sep 28, 2014 5:36 pm

jbagelboy wrote:i'm gonna bite cause this thread is technically still on-topic (although the distinction b/t lounge and on-topic has been tenuous of late). sorry in advance

"Lawyer" =/= "stylized TV trial attorney". lawyers advise and consult on the law for their clients. "Law" includes the tax codes and federal administrative regulations handed down my agencies such as the SEC. While filing papers with courts and bringing claims should be in your firm's wheelhouse and serves as an important part of "practicing law," litigation is just one approach a company or individual might take to address their business problems or civil grievances. A decent "lawyer" can navigate the legal system and advise based on the needs of the client, so just because you aren't in court doesn't mean you're not a lawyer.

it's even more lol to treat transactional attorneys as bankers or tax attorneys as accountants or reg attorneys as lobbyists, which is whats negatively implied when one says those people "aren't real lawyers." They aren't bankers they are mostly just doing legal advisory and paper pushing work for the banker (or occasionally issuer), who does financial advisor and paper pushing work for the client.

ETA: also why is your post anon

(2L pontificating on what it is to be a lawyer)

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jbagelboy

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby jbagelboy » Sun Sep 28, 2014 5:39 pm

Flips88 wrote:
jbagelboy wrote:i'm gonna bite cause this thread is technically still on-topic (although the distinction b/t lounge and on-topic has been tenuous of late). sorry in advance

"Lawyer" =/= "stylized TV trial attorney". lawyers advise and consult on the law for their clients. "Law" includes the tax codes and federal administrative regulations handed down my agencies such as the SEC. While filing papers with courts and bringing claims should be in your firm's wheelhouse and serves as an important part of "practicing law," litigation is just one approach a company or individual might take to address their business problems or civil grievances. A decent "lawyer" can navigate the legal system and advise based on the needs of the client, so just because you aren't in court doesn't mean you're not a lawyer.

it's even more lol to treat transactional attorneys as bankers or tax attorneys as accountants or reg attorneys as lobbyists, which is whats negatively implied when one says those people "aren't real lawyers." They aren't bankers they are mostly just doing legal advisory and paper pushing work for the banker (or occasionally issuer), who does financial advisor and paper pushing work for the client.

ETA: also why is your post anon

(2L pontificating on what it is to be a lawyer)


basically

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:24 pm

Cogburn87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:somehow i remember this thread originally being "You will get 0 substantive trial experience as BL Associate"

gl lit people

- tax


(not a real lawyer)


okay, np, still make 160k + bonus

- tax

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Re: You will get 0 substantiv trial experience as BL Lit Associa

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 28, 2014 9:54 pm

dixiecupdrinking wrote:
brazleton wrote:this circle-jerk is awesome.

1) many biglaw firms have armies of contract attorneys doing the doc review, so the junior associates are...not

2) If you would like to be an attorney for 25-30 years, what's wrong with slowly building up each component skill of the job? So you, third year shit law attorney would "smoke" a 3rd year BL associate in court. Who cares? He'll smoke you in 10 years (when he's probably lateraled to your market), make more money doing it and have a better grasp on how to organize a large complex litigation, because he's done all aspects of it.

3) In general, how about a little debate on this site, instead of the DF makes stupid claim --> people lap it up --> rinse --> repeat

What is there to debate? He's 100% correct.

My experience after less than 1 month on the job conflicts with this



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