Biglaw Horror Stories

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Cogburn87
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Cogburn87 » Mon Apr 11, 2016 1:04 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
homestyle28 wrote:This is probably a more run of the mill story. I've only heard it second hand, but a number of people tell it the same way, and knowing the parties involved, probably legit:

Super Sr. Associate is an up-and-comer, thought highly of, works tons of hours (think repeat years of 2700 billables). Has a go to partner for work, who is, objectively a bitch. She routinely calls, yells at him for fucking up things he did not fuck up, he grins, bears it and keeps working for her. This goes on for several years. Super Sr. is up for partnership, which here is significantly determined by who will speak up for your skills. Super Sr. has taken many deps, worked many trials, and has all the requisite experiences for becoming a young partner. GoTo Partner refuses to speak up for him, and may have even spoke out against him, after years of going back to him to do her work.

This was a few years ago. Super Sr. Assoc is now Super Duper Sr. Assoc (b/c some people don't know how to quit). GoTo Partner remains...and I have an assignment due for her today.


This goes to show a lot of the randomness involved in making partner. Every year at my firm there are senior associates who've been gunning their hearts out for years with similar or more billables, great experience, well liked, etc. only to get told "no more room" by the bouncer at the doors to breakfast.


This wasn't a random no breakfasting, though. Unless we're missing the part about how he also brought in a lot of work for the firm, he was never really in the running.

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DELG
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby DELG » Mon Apr 11, 2016 1:20 pm

Cogburn87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
homestyle28 wrote:This is probably a more run of the mill story. I've only heard it second hand, but a number of people tell it the same way, and knowing the parties involved, probably legit:

Super Sr. Associate is an up-and-comer, thought highly of, works tons of hours (think repeat years of 2700 billables). Has a go to partner for work, who is, objectively a bitch. She routinely calls, yells at him for fucking up things he did not fuck up, he grins, bears it and keeps working for her. This goes on for several years. Super Sr. is up for partnership, which here is significantly determined by who will speak up for your skills. Super Sr. has taken many deps, worked many trials, and has all the requisite experiences for becoming a young partner. GoTo Partner refuses to speak up for him, and may have even spoke out against him, after years of going back to him to do her work.

This was a few years ago. Super Sr. Assoc is now Super Duper Sr. Assoc (b/c some people don't know how to quit). GoTo Partner remains...and I have an assignment due for her today.


This goes to show a lot of the randomness involved in making partner. Every year at my firm there are senior associates who've been gunning their hearts out for years with similar or more billables, great experience, well liked, etc. only to get told "no more room" by the bouncer at the doors to breakfast.


This wasn't a random no breakfasting, though. Unless we're missing the part about how he also brought in a lot of work for the firm, he was never really in the running.



Exactly. I'm surprised anyone thinks someone who is just an excellent associate would be made partner. Unless the bitchy partner lead him to believe so and was a major rainmaker.

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homestyle28
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby homestyle28 » Mon Apr 11, 2016 6:31 pm

At my firm, associates, and really even Jr. partners aren't really expected to have a book of business. No doubt the inability to stand up for himself, reflected poorly on people's assessment of whether or not he was partner material. The shitty part is two-fold, imo 1) GoTo partner going back the the well over and over to get this guy to do her work, then saying "nah, he does shit work actually" when it mattered and 2) pretty sure until the "No" decision came out, Super Sr. was lead to believe he was on track.

The story is usually told in the context of he got completely blind-sided/fucked over.

Anonymous User
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:28 pm

Haven't seen anything like that, but a percentage of people are bound to be assholes. It's worth noting that the 99 out of 100 times this happens and everyone replies with condolences, nobody writes about it. It's probably less common in big law partners, because it's difficult to survive that long being obtuse at anything, social skills included. Even if we assume this person is a sociopath capable of forging empathy when speaking to other partners or a client, you really have to be an idiot to send a work e-mail like this to anybody. It's unlikely more than a handful of people who make partner can be this stupid.

Anonymous User
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:36 pm

Nowhere close to the earlier two stories posted, but I heard of an instance at my firm where this guy had a weekend vacation booked out to propose to his girlfriend with this really elaborate setup that took months of planning. He requested the time off way in advance and everyone knew when and why he would be gone. Partner calls him the day before his trip saying some big deal came up and he will need to cancel the proposal vacation. The guy pleads with the partner, saying this one weekend he needs to himself. Partner turns him down and says he will need to cancel.

To his credit, the guy stood up for himself and actually quit rather than relent to this disrespectful fool of a partner, because he wasn't going to be walked over to that extent...And his GF was so pissed that he had quit his job and thrown his career into turmoil that she said no at the proposal (or more like, at least not yet).

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MarkinKansasCity
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby MarkinKansasCity » Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Nowhere close to the earlier two stories posted, but I heard of an instance at my firm where this guy had a weekend vacation booked out to propose to his girlfriend with this really elaborate setup that took months of planning. He requested the time off way in advance and everyone knew when and why he would be gone. Partner calls him the day before his trip saying some big deal came up and he will need to cancel the proposal vacation. The guy pleads with the partner, saying this one weekend he needs to himself. Partner turns him down and says he will need to cancel.

To his credit, the guy stood up for himself and actually quit rather than relent to this disrespectful fool of a partner, because he wasn't going to be walked over to that extent...And his GF was so pissed that he had quit his job and thrown his career into turmoil that she said no at the proposal (or more like, at least not yet).


Fuck everyone involved in that story. (except the guy who got double fucked... or not fucked at all)

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mrs.miawallace
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby mrs.miawallace » Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:12 pm

GUY IS ROMANTIC.

Anonymous User
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:25 pm

mrs.miawallace wrote:GUY IS ROMANTIC.


He def is. And thats why the girl ultimately stuck with him (they ended up engaged real soon after that). He won in the end. Held strong to his principles by saying no to the partner, ended up with a better firm, and got the girl. More than a bit cavalier, the romantic he is, but luckily it worked out in the end.

Nekrowizard
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Nekrowizard » Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:28 pm

I've always been curious about this "you don't make partner unless you bring in business" thing. How do you bring business to, like, Cravath or S&C?

umichman
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby umichman » Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:39 pm

Nekrowizard wrote:I've always been curious about this "you don't make partner unless you bring in business" thing. How do you bring business to, like, Cravath or S&C?


you dont. which is why nobody makes partner. thats the point.

Snowy Shaw
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Snowy Shaw » Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:41 pm

Nekrowizard wrote:I've always been curious about this "you don't make partner unless you bring in business" thing. How do you bring business to, like, Cravath or S&C?


From what I understand, you inherit some of your business from partners you've worked closely with over the years

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Pokemon
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Pokemon » Mon Apr 11, 2016 11:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Nowhere close to the earlier two stories posted, but I heard of an instance at my firm where this guy had a weekend vacation booked out to propose to his girlfriend with this really elaborate setup that took months of planning. He requested the time off way in advance and everyone knew when and why he would be gone. Partner calls him the day before his trip saying some big deal came up and he will need to cancel the proposal vacation. The guy pleads with the partner, saying this one weekend he needs to himself. Partner turns him down and says he will need to cancel.

To his credit, the guy stood up for himself and actually quit rather than relent to this disrespectful fool of a partner, because he wasn't going to be walked over to that extent...And his GF was so pissed that he had quit his job and thrown his career into turmoil that she said no at the proposal (or more like, at least not yet).


Some of these stories seem made up/urban myth like. Not saying it did not happen, but also not common in my experience.

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Monochromatic Oeuvre
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Monochromatic Oeuvre » Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:03 am

Anonymous User wrote:Nowhere close to the earlier two stories posted, but I heard of an instance at my firm where this guy had a weekend vacation booked out to propose to his girlfriend with this really elaborate setup that took months of planning. He requested the time off way in advance and everyone knew when and why he would be gone. Partner calls him the day before his trip saying some big deal came up and he will need to cancel the proposal vacation. The guy pleads with the partner, saying this one weekend he needs to himself. Partner turns him down and says he will need to cancel.

To his credit, the guy stood up for himself and actually quit rather than relent to this disrespectful fool of a partner, because he wasn't going to be walked over to that extent...And his GF was so pissed that he had quit his job and thrown his career into turmoil that she said no at the proposal (or more like, at least not yet).


I...I just...I hate this planet.

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Johann
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Johann » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:09 am

Yeah when you trade these stories with old law school friends it's actually pretty crazy what happens. I don't even know that many biglawyers and I've heard about:
- being assigned work when you leave to go be with a dying immediate family member
- being back in the office the same week of an out of the blue family death
- billing 50+ hours on a thurs-sun vacation
- missing weddings
- cancelled vacations
- delaying/not taking a honeymoon
- having a baby and being back in the office within a week
- talking to partners that laugh about firing people

Really makes the 11pm calls with asia and 4 am calls with Europe seem like nothing.

Foghornleghorn
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Foghornleghorn » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:44 am

JohannDeMann wrote:being back in the office the same week of an out of the blue family death


Is this really that big of a deal? I interned for a judge when my grandmother died out of the blue on a Sunday. I was given Monday off and was back drafting stuff on Tuesday. . . quite frankly, I needed the distraction.

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Johann
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Johann » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:48 am

Foghornleghorn wrote:
JohannDeMann wrote:being back in the office the same week of an out of the blue family death


Is this really that big of a deal? I interned for a judge when my grandmother died out of the blue on a Sunday. I was given Monday off and was back drafting stuff on Tuesday. . . quite frankly, I needed the distraction.


I meant out of the blue to mean 20 year old brother/50 year old mom. A grandma? Yeah that's one of the skipped funerals I covered elsewhere.

Anonymous User
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:51 am

Pokemon wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Nowhere close to the earlier two stories posted, but I heard of an instance at my firm where this guy had a weekend vacation booked out to propose to his girlfriend with this really elaborate setup that took months of planning. He requested the time off way in advance and everyone knew when and why he would be gone. Partner calls him the day before his trip saying some big deal came up and he will need to cancel the proposal vacation. The guy pleads with the partner, saying this one weekend he needs to himself. Partner turns him down and says he will need to cancel.

To his credit, the guy stood up for himself and actually quit rather than relent to this disrespectful fool of a partner, because he wasn't going to be walked over to that extent...And his GF was so pissed that he had quit his job and thrown his career into turmoil that she said no at the proposal (or more like, at least not yet).


Some of these stories seem made up/urban myth like. Not saying it did not happen, but also not common in my experience.


All I will say is that I am at a firm that is seriously not that bad (have only cancelled around 1 small vacation in 4 years, people are generally okay most everything, did work one big holiday, but haven't been given shit about hours around 1900-2000) and I can say that the entire first part happened to me. I didn't quit though, nor did she say no, and I just did it a few weeks later. If that's possible for a relatively lax firm with decent (for big law) humans, I have absolutely no doubt this could be true.

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Clyde Frog
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Clyde Frog » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:32 am

Condolences to OP. Sorry to hear about your father.

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Lincoln
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Re: Biglaw Horror Stories

Postby Lincoln » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:47 pm

"No one at [my firm] misses the birth of their first child."




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