C&F Addendum Help

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Anonymous User
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 6:01 pm

Saying that I "had a bad day in the office" or was just "stressed" reeks of minimizing. It would look horrible if I said that my conduct was "not that bad", as you say. There is 0 justification for my conduct. It was simply outrageous and unacceptable no matter how upset I was.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 6:06 pm

i'm not saying you say that. i'm saying you write it like a normal addendum instead of trying to write some long melodramatic novella like you're trying to show why your past life of choking prostitutes and selling cocaine to the children's choir shouldn't bar you from taking law classes.

no, your conduct can't be justified, but if you just say you were stressed about not getting a clinic and how that'd harm your job search amplified by a manic episode from undiagnosed bipolar, but have since been placed on medication, attend a support group and weekly visits - you've got enough. you just need literally 3 short sentences of rehabilitation.

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 7:10 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What's passive aggressive about it? Can you cite particular lines?


The passive aggression mingled with over-the-top defensiveness is all over your addendum, so I'm just going to extract three examples:

Anonymous User wrote:[Law School], however, has outright refused to send me the documentation that I required. Therefore, this account is solely based on my imperfect memory of the events as they transpired. [Law School].

Your law school may be the worst law school of all time, but this addendum is no place for you to air your grievances against it. If you must highlight the lack of supporting materials, just say you were unable to obtain your records and refrain from editorializing.

Anonymous User wrote:I am now doing very stably thanks to a robust combination of daily medication, weekly individual/group psychotherapy, and monthly psychiatric visits. My treatment providers can wholeheartedly attest to that, and you are more than welcome to contact them for corroboration of anything I have said.


This is insanely defensive. If you feel you would benefit from your treatment providers' input, asking them to write letters on your behalf and submitting those as supporting materials is infinitely preferable to inundating your addendum with I-AM-NOT-LYING-I-SWEAR verbiage.

Anonymous User wrote: Although my past disruptive behaviors directly and proximately stemmed from my then-untreated bipolar disorder, I accept 100% responsibility for my actions and harbor no malice and ill will toward those who disclosed the misconduct or initiated proceedings against me. I wholly deserved what I got.


This looks like a veiled dig at those who participated in the disciplinary process against you. In fact, it reads as: "Although I should be angry with those motherfuckers who complained about me because they showed zero understanding for my illness, I forgive them from the bottom of my generous heart." It should be taken as a given that you "harbor no malice and ill will" towards people who took issues with your harassment - that goes (or should go) without saying. By emphasizing that you're not mad, you're only going to have the reader thinking that you are, or were, indeed resentful at not being shown lenience.

The entire addendum is a bad idea. Just scrap it. At least two people ITT have edited it into something passable; in your place, I'd adopt one of those edited versions and call it a day if you're really serious about being a visiting student.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 7:20 pm

Should I ask my treatment providers to submit LORs instead of saying that they are on file?

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 7:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Besides, it's not like I am going into Big Law. I want to do civil legal aid, which is usually 9-5ish and very respectful of work-life balance. I hope my summer 2015 employers agrees to be my postgrad fellowship sponsor.

My hours at my first job, which was in the civil legal aid category, were as bad as my biglaw boyfriend's. My current hours aren't that horrific, but they're not the cushy 9-to-5 on many days either. "9-5" and "respectful of work life balance" is rarer than you might imagine, and that's particularly the case with legal orgs that do direct representation (vs. orgs like ACLU that do impact litigation).

The best shot at 9 to 5 are government jobs, and you don't seem likely to qualify for those.

While I'm on this topic, do yourself a favor and cut out sentences where you emphasize the significance of your ability to perform tasks such as screening, evaluating clients' eligibility for various forms of relief and helping attorneys conduct law school clinics. Skills like those are undoubtedly critical to any organization, but they're also very basic (and certainly far from the most complex responsibilities you would have as a nonprofit attorney). Bragging about your ability to perform them implies lack of perspective, which is hardly something you want to showcase in your application.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 7:39 pm

It varies by organization. The legal aid places in my city are strictly 9-5 type gigs, based on my conversations with the staff attorneys. Good benefits and generous vacation time too. Pay ins't great, but I'll have PSLF and I'll be living with family to keep CoL low.

Why can't I do government work? I am definitely qualified for state trial court clerkships, SSA Attorney Advisor positions, etc.

I think it is important to highlight that I worked full-time during my hiatus. I'm not "bragging". It shows that I can take initiative in the face of adversity. It will look very bad if they think that I sat around doing nothing for a year. Idleness is the devil's playground.

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 7:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:It varies by organization. The legal aid places in my city are strictly 9-5 type gigs, based on my conversations with the staff attorneys. Good benefits and generous vacation time too. Pay ins't great, but I'll have PSLF and I'll be living with family to keep CoL low.

Why can't I do government work? I am definitely qualified for state trial court clerkships, SSA Attorney Advisor positions, etc.

I think it is important to highlight that I worked full-time during my hiatus. I'm not "bragging". It shows that I can take initiative in the face of adversity. It will look very bad if they think that I sat around doing nothing for a year. Idleness is the devil's playground.


Government work is typically for people who didn't have to hire a lawyer to pass C and F, but I don't want to engage in an endless back and forth about that so I'll let it be.

And no one is saying that you shouldn't mention you worked full time. In fact, I'm not saying you shouldn't (briefly!) describe your responsibilities (although those should really be on your resume, rather than crowding this addendum). What I'm saying is that you should refrain from adding verbiage that tells the reader what they can infer from the fact that you worked those jobs and had the responsibilities you had. Just state where you were and what you did, let them draw their own conclusions and keep it moving.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 7:57 pm

You have to pass C&F to be an attorney period, whether it's gov't work or otherwise. After a delay, and possibly a hearing, I *will* pass C&F. My state is known to be very forgiving. My C&F attorney said that he has successfully represented people in my state with much worse records--multiple DUIS, aggravated assaults, grand larceny, etc. Why is government work foreclosed to me? (Besides obviously JAG)

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 8:07 pm

I really don't want to indulge you any further, but my point wasn't that you're "foreclosed" outright; it was that chances are good that you'll be a highly unattractive candidate there in particular.

As a general matter, you do understand that it's possible to be a very unattractive candidate thanks to your extensive baggage even after you pass C and F, right?

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worldtraveler
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby worldtraveler » Fri May 29, 2015 8:09 pm

Do you honestly think you can pass a government background check?

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:11 pm

Dresden, My "extensive baggage" is under control thru medication, individual and group psychotherapy. There is no need to tell employers that I have bipolar disorder. Ergo, they won't find out. I have a very strong resume for public interest, including fluency in multiple languages. I'll be fine in the long run. Just have to get over this bump in the road. I am very optimistic about my future, whether it is law or social work.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri May 29, 2015 8:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:13 pm

WT, state trial clerkships and such don't do extensive checks into mental health history and other HIPAA-protected records. It's not like I want to work for the FBI/CIA. I have an unblemished criminal record.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:16 pm

If this was a DUI or retail theft addendum, I wouldn't be facing so much skepticism about my "fitness" to practice law. This thread is exhibit A in how mental illness is so stigmatized in the legal community.

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 8:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:If this was a DUI or retail theft addendum, I wouldn't be facing so much skepticism about my "fitness" to practice law. This thread is exhibit A in how mental illness is so stigmatized in the legal community.


Your mental illness raises legitimate questions about your ability to practice law, whether you like it or not. It is up to you to show that it's under control, and your addendum does a very poor job of that. The fact that you seem to chalk up our criticisms to "stigmatization" does nothing to help your case, either.

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worldtraveler
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby worldtraveler » Fri May 29, 2015 8:26 pm

You don't get booted from law school for a year because of a DUI or retail theft. Those aren't even comparable situations.

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Holly Golightly
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Holly Golightly » Fri May 29, 2015 8:28 pm

dresden doll wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If this was a DUI or retail theft addendum, I wouldn't be facing so much skepticism about my "fitness" to practice law. This thread is exhibit A in how mental illness is so stigmatized in the legal community.


Your mental illness raises legitimate questions about your ability to practice law, whether you like it or not. It is up to you to show that it's under control, and your addendum does a very poor job of that. The fact that you seem to chalk up our criticisms to "stigmatization" does nothing to help your case, either.

Also, OP, I genuinely have no idea if it's related to your mental illness, but your responses to many well-meaning people in this thread have been illogical and incoherent.
Last edited by Holly Golightly on Fri May 29, 2015 8:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:29 pm

Then how come whenever someone posts a DUI or retail theft addendum on here, no one attacks the poster and tells them that they should avoid the stress of law practice altogether? DUI and retail theft most definitely raise legitimate questions about one's ability to practice law. I would rather trust a lawyer who called her dean an "insufferable bitch" in a heated moment than one who could possibly steal from me or miss a filing deadline because they were intoxicated.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:32 pm

WT...But you can get incarcerated for retail theft or a DUI, which would get you booted from law school anyway.

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rpupkin
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby rpupkin » Fri May 29, 2015 8:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Then how come whenever someone posts a DUI or retail theft addendum on here, no one attacks the poster and tells them that they should avoid the stress of law practice altogether?

Imagine someone wrote the following: "In Fall 2013 while in law school, I committed a series of thefts at retail department stores and was ultimately arrested. One year later, I robbed several grocery stores, and was again arrested and charged."

I would tell that person to avoid the practice of law.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:48 pm

I think we can all agree that a string of retail thefts is more problematic than calling a professor a "sh*thead".

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worldtraveler
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby worldtraveler » Fri May 29, 2015 8:51 pm

What does that have to do with anything?

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dresden doll
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby dresden doll » Fri May 29, 2015 8:51 pm

rpupkin wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Then how come whenever someone posts a DUI or retail theft addendum on here, no one attacks the poster and tells them that they should avoid the stress of law practice altogether?

Imagine someone wrote the following: "In Fall 2013 while in law school, I committed a series of thefts at retail department stores and was ultimately arrested. One year later, I robbed several grocery stores, and was again arrested and charged."

I would tell that person to avoid the practice of law.


You forgot that part where that person repeatedly talks past people who raise legitimate concerns about her excessively detailed addendum.

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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 29, 2015 8:59 pm

No one tells the DUI person that they should avoid the "stresses" inherent in the law, even though chemical dependency has a legitimate bearing on one's ability to practice law. People with mental health issues get told that all the time.

I already cut down on some of the details, dresden. I am just too lazy to post my final draft because it takes a long time to redact all the identifying information.

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worldtraveler
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby worldtraveler » Fri May 29, 2015 9:03 pm

One dui does not make you an alcoholic.

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Holly Golightly
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Re: C&F Addendum Help

Postby Holly Golightly » Fri May 29, 2015 9:08 pm

And if someone posted an addendum about harassing several faculty members while in law school (including one very recent incident), being required to withdraw from law school for a year, and having very serious problems with addiction, I am certain people would be concerned about that person's ability to practice law.




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