Law practice Nothing Like Law School

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Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Law practice Nothing Like Law School

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Fri Jun 10, 2016 4:44 pm

Yeah OP, I think you (like many young law students) have had the revelation that there are really sorta two types of legal work, transactional and litigation. Law school never really explains this because it is so litigation-centric (which most law students don't see until they get out into some real practice and realize some lawyers never go to court at all).

You want to litigate - you want to clean up after the transactional people's mistakes, and that is cool, I do to. Sure litigation has its dull parts and depending on the type of practice, it can be mind numbing (either massive doc review, or high-volume insurance defense, PI, etc.), but as a general matter, real litigation can involve interesting legal issues, and every now and then I love a new case that comes my way with a fascinatingly nuanced legal issue with no real clear precedent (and a client with enough cash and / or who is pissed off enough to pay me to actually take it to the end).

You've discovered transactional work blows, and that's a plus at this point. I'm with you, I couldn't be a transactional lawyer ever. I'm meant to litigate, and I accept all the pros and cons that have come with my choice to style myself a litigator only.


Posts: 1396
Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Law practice Nothing Like Law School

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Fri Jun 10, 2016 4:54 pm

clshopeful wrote:I guess that's true. K class is largely a litigation-focused class. Never really realized that I guess.

For people doing upcoming OCI, is it appropriate to label myself as lit v. tran? Don't want to limit my callbacks by saying I only want lit

There are likely different views on this, but I straight up put on my OCI resume that I was interested in litigaiton, and it was a plus for firms that had litigator positions. The firm I worked at for my SA straight told me they hired me because I said I wanted litigation and they had a need for new litigation associates. Bear in mind that firms at OCI generally have a list of needs they need to fill in specific practice areas / groups, they don't just hire a bunch of SAs and figure out later where they will fit in.

Dirty little secret (at least at my SA firm) - SAs were hired into certain practice groups, and everyone knew that except us SAs. So we're all saying "we want as broad exposure as we can get to everything over the summer" and being eager little beavers to learn all we could over the summer, meanwhile one of us gets a bunch of lit work, and the other gets labor and employment work, the fact is that (unbeknownst to me) I was a litigation SA, my friend was a labor and employment SA, and regardless of how the summer went, if I was getting an offer it would be into the litigation group. I think firms don't come out and say this because many 2L SAs probably have no idea what type of law they want to practice, and if they knew early on they were being pigeonholed, it might scare them away. But I was pigeonholed, but that was cool because I knew I wanted that hot and sexy court action and did not want to sit and draw up fucking contracts all day.


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Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2016 3:48 pm

Re: Law practice Nothing Like Law School

Postby tyroneslothrop1 » Fri Jun 10, 2016 5:10 pm

Employers don't mind you being honest and saying you're not sure, assuming they have both litigation and transactional practices. Most OCI students express a firm idea one way or another despite having an extremely limited understanding of what the two entail.


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Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2016 4:24 pm

Re: Law practice Nothing Like Law School

Postby yay » Fri Jun 10, 2016 6:45 pm

if i wrote a MSJ like i did in law school or even on the bar exam, the judge would post it on his chamber doors as the joke of the year. same with complaints and any other pleadings/motions.

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