Mid law or Big Law

(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.

Mid law or Big Law, more details in first post.

Big Law (145k, typical biglaw hours)
36
57%
Mid Law (90k, 1500 billables)
27
43%
 
Total votes: 63

Anonymous User
Posts: 273092
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 27, 2015 10:09 am

I work at a midlaw firm (~50 atty). Here's my thought: You're going to get to do a wider variety of work and more substantive work right off the bat. That's a huge plus. I'm a third year attorney and I've handled appeals on my own (including an oral argument before the COA), done countless court appearances, second chaired trials, drafted more shit than you can shake a stick at, and of course done all the regular doc review and discovery BS. Point being, there just isn't enough manpower at a smaller firm to stick you on discovery for 3 years while you get your feet wet. The downside is your cases are going to be a little smaller. There will be a lot of Joe's Massage Parlor v. Disgruntled Ex Massage Girl and much less Apple v. Samsung. But the smaller cases mean they can be more leanly staffed, which means you get to do more shit. Life's about tradeoffs, but if it were me I'd take the midlaw gig because of your debt level. That said with small firms the people become paramount so make sure you get a good vibe from whoever you'd be working for.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273092
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 02, 2015 11:57 am

OP here. Poll results are pretty shocking and are not making this easy. Nearly 50/50 right now. I'm going to be visiting hte mid law place again this Friday. Will check in again afterwards and probably after making a decision to provide closure for all those who have helped me :)

JohannDeMann wrote:If that midlaw is going to give you client contact with local credit unions, that's a pretty sweet gig. I have a couple friends in house at credit unions and they have it very chill. Very very chill with pay that would be in line with your biglaw option.
A general theme on this forum I don't agree with is prestige matters. Going to biglaw firm with prestige clients isn't going to help you if you never get to interact with the client and the client because of prestige has lots of other great candidates vying for roles and so they only hire people in year 3-5 range. Meanwhile, client contact at a midlaw firm doing work for local credit unions and contact could be much better. It could mean you exit after 1-2 years. It could mean you work for a client that does 40 hour weeks. And it also could give you more unicorn like opportunities like CFO because the people you are competing with don't have your credentials and the business has less stringent hiring redtape requirements.
Just things to consider.


the Midlaw place did say that some second years were able to start running deals on their own, which sounded pretty awesome. Obviously, I'm not sure how much is fact/fiction.

Anonymous User wrote:I work at a midlaw firm (~50 atty). Here's my thought: You're going to get to do a wider variety of work and more substantive work right off the bat. That's a huge plus. I'm a third year attorney and I've handled appeals on my own (including an oral argument before the COA), done countless court appearances, second chaired trials, drafted more shit than you can shake a stick at, and of course done all the regular doc review and discovery BS. Point being, there just isn't enough manpower at a smaller firm to stick you on discovery for 3 years while you get your feet wet. The downside is your cases are going to be a little smaller. There will be a lot of Joe's Massage Parlor v. Disgruntled Ex Massage Girl and much less Apple v. Samsung. But the smaller cases mean they can be more leanly staffed, which means you get to do more shit. Life's about tradeoffs, but if it were me I'd take the midlaw gig because of your debt level. That said with small firms the people become paramount so make sure you get a good vibe from whoever you'd be working for.


this is super helpful. If you don't mind me asking- what is your 5 year plan?

User avatar
los blancos
Posts: 7108
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:18 pm

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby los blancos » Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:44 pm

I would temper that post by saying it's a generalization. It is generally true that midlaw is going to get you more substantive work earlier on, but it's by no means a guarantee and likely depends firm to firm. It's also unclear whether or not that advantage alone is going to help get you where you want to be in 5 years.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273092
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:04 pm

FWIW, I faced similar options as you, though not quite the same. I will be starting this fall at what I consider a regional midlaw firm (probably 500-600 attorneys total). My options were between this firm and a few much larger firms.

Without starting a day on the job, I instantly regret it. I enjoyed my summer there and was placed into my desired practice group, but I am coming to the sudden realization that the hours will likely be the same, the exit options will be worse, and the pay is worse.

If I had to do it over again, no question I would go with the bigger firm. I would seriously think about your exit options.

YMMV.

User avatar
sundance95
Posts: 2123
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 7:44 pm

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby sundance95 » Mon Mar 02, 2015 11:38 pm

600 attys is midlaw?

lawschoolftw
Posts: 338
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 2:34 pm

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby lawschoolftw » Tue Mar 03, 2015 8:55 am

sundance95 wrote:600 attys is midlaw?


yeah, when I think "mid-law" I think at the most, 100 attorneys--usually more in the realm of 50, though.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273092
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:00 am

sundance95 wrote:600 attys is midlaw?

Not exactly (I did say there were some differences) but when you spread them out over a dozen offices, all in the middle of the country, and the pay is less than $160, I don't see how it fits the true concept of biglaw.

User avatar
Dafaq
Posts: 354
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2014 6:19 pm

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby Dafaq » Tue Mar 03, 2015 12:50 pm

I think one of the ways to differentiate ML from BL. In a big case we might assign 5 attorneys while they assign 50 attorneys.

User avatar
romothesavior
Posts: 14772
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:29 pm

Re: Mid law or Big Law

Postby romothesavior » Tue Mar 03, 2015 1:17 pm

1500 billed or 1500 realized? Huge difference.

I have a hard time believing a firm pays 90k and only has a 1500 billable requirement.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.