LLM Desperation

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paraguayfargus
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LLM Desperation

Postby paraguayfargus » Sat Apr 04, 2015 5:22 pm

Hey everyone. I know that getting a LLM is usually discouraged unless its NYU or Florida for tax. The problem is that I cannot find a job. I'm scheduled to take the bar in July, but hate not having ANYTHING lined up.

I've mass mailed but so far haven't even received a screener.

I'm looking at a Duke LLM and think that with my grades I could lock it up. I'm also open to move anywhere for decent work (aka not contract doc review).

Any advice? :cry:

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:14 pm

Taking on additional debt to get a pretty worthless degree doesn't seem like a bad idea to you? I mean it's one thing if it's a tax LLM from NYU or something like that, but otherwise it's a complete waste, and you're probably only going to be in a worse situation than you are now. You're better off just focusing on getting a job. You're going to need to look outside of biglaw. (The fact that you mentioned "mass mailing" and "screener" makes me think you're mostly only applying to biglaw jobs, which aren't particularly easy to get in your situation.)

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JohannDeMann
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby JohannDeMann » Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:38 pm

gotta scrap and hustle this next year. if you don't get anywhere, then prolly do an LLM. It might not help, but you won't have anything to lose.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:48 pm

JohannDeMann wrote:gotta scrap and hustle this next year. if you don't get anywhere, then prolly do an LLM. It might not help, but you won't have anything to lose.


But dat MEGADEBT. Not so sure that you're actually any more employable with an LLM. Imagine a lot of employers would wonder WTF happened/you were thinking, and not hire you. If I were interviewing someone with a JD and LLM, I'd certainly ask a lot of questions about it/be skeptical about that person. OP's seriously better off just trying to find a job. It's not like he's going to be totally "unemployable" until a year or so has passed by since he graduates. If he went to a t14, he probably could grab a stipend from the school to volunteer at some PI organization (since that helps the law school game USNews; at least it did until this year). Getting practical experience and/or networking is a billion times better than getting a worthless LLM.

CanadianWolf
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby CanadianWolf » Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:54 pm

Why do you think that you cannot get any interviews ?

Check to see how Duke handles LLM candidates at OCI. It may be worthwhile. Typically, however, LLM programs are designed for tax law specialization & for graduates of foreign law schools to enable them to be eligible for several states (New York & Mass. for example) bar exams.

As an LLM candidate, you'd have an advantage of interviewing with at least one state bar membership in hand.

paraguayfargus
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby paraguayfargus » Sat Apr 04, 2015 7:51 pm

Hi everyone,

Thanks for the advice so far. Here is a little more information:

I'm currently around top 20% at a lower end tier one and have 2 years of work exp. prior to law school in finance. I was thinking of this LLM (http://law.duke.edu/llmle/llm/) because of the opportunities it may open up in corporate law. I figured the Duke brand would go a long way, but I don't know.

The debt is shitty. I got a minor scholarship and have been frugal at my current school, but I really don't want to be paying 1200 a month for the next 20 years (what the situation would be if I took out loans for this degree and if I don't qualify for IBR etc.)

Anonymous User
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Apr 04, 2015 8:03 pm

OP, you know it's a bad idea, just keep hustling. I understand you think this is your only good opportunity so you should take it. The problem is, this isn't generally a good opportunity. Keep looking for a job. Only you know your employment situation but I doubt this will actually materially improve your job chances.

This feels like it may be a situation where you need ignore people in your life who don't know much about the legal market.

VPlaw
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby VPlaw » Sat Apr 04, 2015 8:13 pm

paraguayfargus wrote:Hey everyone. I know that getting a LLM is usually discouraged unless its NYU or Florida for tax. The problem is that I cannot find a job. I'm scheduled to take the bar in July, but hate not having ANYTHING lined up.

I've mass mailed but so far haven't even received a screener.

I'm looking at a Duke LLM and think that with my grades I could lock it up. I'm also open to move anywhere for decent work (aka not contract doc review).

Any advice? :cry:


Can I ask where you got your JD?

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sat Apr 04, 2015 8:40 pm

paraguayfargus wrote:Hi everyone,

Thanks for the advice so far. Here is a little more information:

I'm currently around top 20% at a lower end tier one and have 2 years of work exp. prior to law school in finance. I was thinking of this LLM (http://law.duke.edu/llmle/llm/) because of the opportunities it may open up in corporate law. I figured the Duke brand would go a long way, but I don't know.

The debt is shitty. I got a minor scholarship and have been frugal at my current school, but I really don't want to be paying 1200 a month for the next 20 years (what the situation would be if I took out loans for this degree and if I don't qualify for IBR etc.)


This is a terrible idea. You had around 2 years worth of electives courses while in law school, and I imagine you could've take most of those courses then. So I don't understand why you want to waste the money to take the same classes you could have already taken? It'd be a different story if you were a foreign student (and, hence, didn't have a JD). Moreover, if really want to waste the money on an LLM, why don't you just get a tax LLM from NYU? At least that's a marketable degree.

I also did a quick Google search about LLM OCI, and it's not like the 2L SA program. It sounds more like you're going to be in roughly the same situation you are in now, where you're going to have to convince firms to hire you as a straight up associate. I also read that a lot of the firms that do LLM OCI are looking for something very specific (e.g. students with specific language skills who are interested in a particular practice group, etc.) As US JD, I really don't see how a bullshit LLM, like the one you're looking to acquire, will benefit you.

paraguayfargus
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby paraguayfargus » Sat Apr 04, 2015 10:02 pm

I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.

JAYINSD
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby JAYINSD » Sat Apr 04, 2015 11:35 pm

paraguayfargus wrote:I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.


Then get a NYU LLM if you really want to do it. Why do you even want to go to Duke? Are u trolling?

paraguayfargus
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby paraguayfargus » Sat Apr 04, 2015 11:56 pm

Thanks for the help everyone.

I think this just confirmed what I already knew, I shouldn't do the LLM. I guess it just felt like it would be better to do something than be unemployed, but the only thing worse than being unemployed will be taking on new debt for the same opportunities.

VPlaw
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby VPlaw » Sun Apr 05, 2015 1:57 am

paraguayfargus wrote:I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.


Try looking outside of NY for a job. Try a market that your school outranks. I know you may have to take another bar is the bad part.

paraguayfargus
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby paraguayfargus » Sun Apr 05, 2015 12:20 pm

VPlaw wrote:
paraguayfargus wrote:I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.


Try looking outside of NY for a job. Try a market that your school outranks. I know you may have to take another bar is the bad part.


I waited to start applying to jobs outside NY for too long. I've only recently been applying elsewhere in new england and jersey.

hiima3L
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby hiima3L » Sun Apr 05, 2015 3:34 pm

An LLM is not a positive (unless it's tax), it's a negative in all respects. It just reeks of "I couldn't find a job so I went to more school."

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J9ofDiamonds
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby J9ofDiamonds » Sun Apr 05, 2015 5:54 pm

Definitely don't do the llm you posted.

VPlaw
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby VPlaw » Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:06 pm

paraguayfargus wrote:
VPlaw wrote:
paraguayfargus wrote:I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.


Try looking outside of NY for a job. Try a market that your school outranks. I know you may have to take another bar is the bad part.


I waited to start applying to jobs outside NY for too long. I've only recently been applying elsewhere in new england and jersey.


Have you tried the west coast. Not Cali, but AZ, NM, NV? Once you land your first professional gig and keep it a year or so, you can move on. Just a thought...but I am no expert.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:46 pm

VPlaw wrote:
paraguayfargus wrote:
VPlaw wrote:
paraguayfargus wrote:I'd rather not say my school, but its a T1 in NY.


Try looking outside of NY for a job. Try a market that your school outranks. I know you may have to take another bar is the bad part.


I waited to start applying to jobs outside NY for too long. I've only recently been applying elsewhere in new england and jersey.


Have you tried the west coast. Not Cali, but AZ, NM, NV? Once you land your first professional gig and keep it a year or so, you can move on. Just a thought...but I am no expert.


Def needs ties for those areas. But applying anywhere OP has some type of ties would make sense. Also, imagine OP would have better luck in NY if he forgot about biglaw and started focusing on applying to other jobs. (It sounds like he's basically just "mass mailing" to large firms in NY, which isn't very productive in his situation. I think this because he mentioned "mass mailing" and not being able to get a "screener" interview.)

UndecidedMN
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Re: LLM Desperation

Postby UndecidedMN » Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:51 pm

I posted this in another post that was similar to you, but may help you. PM if you have questions.

I did a lot of research on this because I wanted to be in Tax Law out of law school. I recently went to the ABA Tax Section meeting, have been to numerous local tax breakfasts, interviewed about six different attorneys from small and large firms, and lastly numerous professors from different law schools. So I think I got a handle on this. My information may be limited to the Minnesota/Wisc. market, but I do not believe so.

First, you have to decide what type of tax law you want to be in. Litigation or essentially non-litigation. Litigation firms in Minnesota are actually very small firms 1-3 attorneys who specialize in tax law. Big firms around here are known to contract with them for their tax litigation clients, especially if it is criminal tax work. The big law firms will do litigation tax work, but almost never criminal. Also, the cases that big law firms handle usually settle, so don't expect to be in the courtroom. The risks from the government side and the client side are often way too big to be litigate. You may also work at the IRS.

If you go the non-litigation route, you are going big law or accounting firms. I was in the tax clinic for a few years, and a third of my fellow classmates went there. If you are in an accounting firm, it is extremely corporate structured and you feel much more like an accountant then a lawyer. Mostly working for accounting firms, you are focusing on international tax and some mergers and acquisition stuff. If you want to go big law, you usually summered there or got a LLM in tax. If you work at big law, you are working on estates and M&A.

LLMs are not the be all and end all in tax. Top 25% to 33% do get big law jobs from top 3-4 schools. I stress top 3-4 schools. The only schools I would get an LLM from if you wish to work at U.S. Tax Court or Big Law is NYU and Georgetown. Northwestern has been pushing there LLM really hard and they are good for Midwest firms. Everyone says Florida, but I would stay away. Thats it for schools I would attend for an LLM. Villanova is also getting better based upon the quality of its faculty, location, and so forth. But they are shipping alot of their grads to Big 4 accounting from what I understand. If you think LLMs will get you into DOJ, it won't. For some reason, they want litigators they will teach tax to. So knowing tax is not really a benefit. Also getting your LLM will cost anywhere from 75K-100K. I was accepted to NYU and that is why I didn't go. LLMs will get you an edge over someone else who does not have one, however experience trumps all. Lastly, if you get an LLM, you will be writing the research memo or legal memo about the tax issue being litigated. Most often you will not be the litigator.

Good luck and happy to answer more, just PM or post.




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