Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jun 11, 2016 8:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you have no debt, don't do biglaw. It has made me depressed (serious). I intend on never working for a firm again (yes, it's that bad).


Could you elaborate a bit based on the question I asked in OP? In particular do you think biglaw trained you better than smaller firms could? What was so bad about it?


It depends on what you want to do. If you want to run your own practice, go to a smaller firm. If you want to join the DOJ, you have to clerk and do biglaw. I think that a lot of the training focuses on writing style and formatting, etc., which may not be as important in a lot of other sectors like public interest, smaller firms, etc.

There are a lot of things bad about biglaw, and over time, they wear you down. I would say that as a first year I was more enthused about the work and had more fear. Now, as a midlevel, I just feel depressed and I hate the work.

I do transactional work, and it is incredibly boring - I don't like reading and drafting documents re: credit facilities, etc. all day. Just kill me. I think being an accountant, although boring, would be much more tolerable, because at least you would know what you're doing much more often...biglaw is both boring and stress-inducing.

Here's what I dislike about biglaw:
- The work (difficult work that requires you to constantly learn shit with no guidance). I am literally given new types of agreements to draft on a weekly basis, never having done them before. Most of the time I have no idea whats going on and am given pretty much no guidance. The work is both boring (financial services shit) and stressful (no guidance). The only way to know is to slowly work through tons of precedents, term sheets, etc. to figure out what's going on. (I am a midlevel.)
- The amount of work and expectations - here's a big pile of papers, go read and summarize them by tomorrow. Or here's a sample 100 page agreement - give me a draft in 2 days incorporating everything from the term sheet into a new 100 page agreement.
- Everything is a fire drill. I mean everything.
- The hours - unpredictable and long. You are on call which means you never know when you're going to bill. You could be in the office for 20 hours and only bill 10.
- The culture/people - a lot of assholes. Some people would have been fired in another industry for some of the shit that goes on in biglaw.

I personally don't even think the new pay is that great for places like NYC/DC given the amount of crap associates have to put up with. A fair number of people leave biglaw with the intent of leaving law forever.

I don't see why people without debt would want to do biglaw - a lot of in house jobs are just as boring (although less stressful). There are more interesting professions out there.

Anyway, I don't have any loans and am trying to get out - pretty much thinking about what i want to do with my life (not this).

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you have no debt, don't do biglaw. It has made me depressed (serious). I intend on never working for a firm again (yes, it's that bad).


Could you elaborate a bit based on the question I asked in OP? In particular do you think biglaw trained you better than smaller firms could? What was so bad about it?


It depends on what you want to do. If you want to run your own practice, go to a smaller firm. If you want to join the DOJ, you have to clerk and do biglaw. I think that a lot of the training focuses on writing style and formatting, etc., which may not be as important in a lot of other sectors like public interest, smaller firms, etc.

There are a lot of things bad about biglaw, and over time, they wear you down. I would say that as a first year I was more enthused about the work and had more fear. Now, as a midlevel, I just feel depressed and I hate the work.

I do transactional work, and it is incredibly boring - I don't like reading and drafting documents re: credit facilities, etc. all day. Just kill me. I think being an accountant, although boring, would be much more tolerable, because at least you would know what you're doing much more often...biglaw is both boring and stress-inducing.

Here's what I dislike about biglaw:
- The work (difficult work that requires you to constantly learn shit with no guidance). I am literally given new types of agreements to draft on a weekly basis, never having done them before. Most of the time I have no idea whats going on and am given pretty much no guidance. The work is both boring (financial services shit) and stressful (no guidance). The only way to know is to slowly work through tons of precedents, term sheets, etc. to figure out what's going on. (I am a midlevel.)
- The amount of work and expectations - here's a big pile of papers, go read and summarize them by tomorrow. Or here's a sample 100 page agreement - give me a draft in 2 days incorporating everything from the term sheet into a new 100 page agreement.
- Everything is a fire drill. I mean everything.
- The hours - unpredictable and long. You are on call which means you never know when you're going to bill. You could be in the office for 20 hours and only bill 10.
- The culture/people - a lot of assholes. Some people would have been fired in another industry for some of the shit that goes on in biglaw.

I personally don't even think the new pay is that great for places like NYC/DC given the amount of crap associates have to put up with. A fair number of people leave biglaw with the intent of leaving law forever.

I don't see why people without debt would want to do biglaw - a lot of in house jobs are just as boring (although less stressful). There are more interesting professions out there.

Anyway, I don't have any loans and am trying to get out - pretty much thinking about what i want to do with my life (not this).


Gosh i am so sorry to hear this. Would you care to answer a few more Qs? I am in the process of job searching and seriously have reservations about biglaw.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Pulsar » Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:17 pm

Do you think your criticisms apply to litigation?

My impression is that when litigation is boring, at least it's not super stressful (doc review is doc review). And when it's super stressful, at least writing the brief (or whatever it is) is less boring than a creditor agreement would be. That and hopefully having actual court deadlines set in advance makes it a little more predictable/less fire-drill-ey.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:35 am

Pulsar wrote:Do you think your criticisms apply to litigation?

My impression is that when litigation is boring, at least it's not super stressful (doc review is doc review). And when it's super stressful, at least writing the brief (or whatever it is) is less boring than a creditor agreement would be. That and hopefully having actual court deadlines set in advance makes it a little more predictable/less fire-drill-ey.

No you're still fucked.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby lavarman84 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:46 am

Personally, I think the nice thing about having no debt is that you can be very picky with the biglaw firm you choose and where you work (assuming you have the credentials) if you choose to go that route.

I'm considering it now. I like the firm I'm SAing at. Might opt to go there. I'd give the majority of biglaw firms a hard pass.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby juzam_djinn » Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:30 am

Pulsar wrote:Do you think your criticisms apply to litigation?

My impression is that when litigation is boring, at least it's not super stressful (doc review is doc review). And when it's super stressful, at least writing the brief (or whatever it is) is less boring than a creditor agreement would be. That and hopefully having actual court deadlines set in advance makes it a little more predictable/less fire-drill-ey.


from what associates have told me, the reasons you listed are what make lit a tiny bit better than corp. they all still say it's rough though

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby bern victim » Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:41 am

biglaw is generally shit, regardless of practice area, but there are worse things to do for a few years and the pay is pretty good. u can either pay off debt or build up savings and a 401k before moving on to what you really want to do. it's stressful but you can do anything for a few years.

man, you better hope you really want to be a lawyer though. having no debt helps but honestly it's the law degree that will keep you trapped in this shitty profession more than anything. I don't enjoy biglaw, but despite having very good credentials and exit options I don't see much that looks better. looking at non-law options and prospects are pretty dismal. leaving legal profession raises a lot of eyebrows. so I'm pretty much just sticking it out at a miserable job until I figure out what else to do with my life.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:50 am

I have no debt due to scholarships/working through law school. I continue to work in biglaw because the work is interesting and hours aren't really too bad. I do tech trans at firm in SF/SV. Hours are fairly predictable (9-7) unless on an M&A deal.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby KiltedKicker » Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:03 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Like, I have absolutely no reason to be uncomfortable while asking inane questions. But that doesn't mean I can't still be careful because you never know. I heard that all firm recruitment offices have a dedicated TLSer who searches every poster's history and figures out who they are. If they see me being hesitant about biglaw, then they'll likely not give me an offer during OCI.


Actually? Firms go to the trouble to try to seek out an applicants account and then scan their history for certain things? Is this sarcasm because this sounds like horseshit
Last edited by KiltedKicker on Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:11 am

Im graduating without debt (and with a trust fund) so the money isn't really an issue. But I'm still on the fence about biglaw. Part of it is skepticism about it being as bad as people say it is (I think people tend to overstate how much they work/like to complain). Part of it is money is money, and whether or not I need it, $130k pay difference is still a lot. Part of it is path determination; I feel like it'll be easier to leave biglaw if I don't like it, than to enter biglaw later if I change my mind. And lastly, part of it is being jaded with public interest; I've worked at too many non profits where nothing works because theres no money to replace things, the staff aren't nearly as qualified or capable as the private sector, and while the work sounds rewarding in theory it has little impact in practice. To be honest, my biggest hangup is that I feel like I'm obligated to do public interest because I don't need the money.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby UnicornHunter » Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:19 am

You're not

E. Also, definitely don't do it if that's your attitude. There are plenty of true beliebers out there, don't tak a spot from them.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:23 pm

KiltedKicker wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Like, I have absolutely no reason to be uncomfortable while asking inane questions. But that doesn't mean I can't still be careful because you never know. I heard that all firm recruitment offices have a dedicated TLSer who searches every poster's history and figures out who they are. If they see me being hesitant about biglaw, then they'll likely not give me an offer during OCI.


Actually? Firms go to the trouble to try to seek out an applicants account and then scan their history for certain things? Is this sarcasm because this sounds like horseshit

It is. They're trolling.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I have no debt due to scholarships/working through law school. I continue to work in biglaw because the work is interesting and hours aren't really too bad. I do tech trans at firm in SF/SV. Hours are fairly predictable (9-7) unless on an M&A deal.


Op here. 9-7 on a regular basis sounds really awful. I currently have a 10-5/7 job but it's because my firm is shit. From what ppl posted here, transactional work sounds really depressing but not that much worse than lit.

I think I will try to get a biglaw job for reasons no other than to have better exit opportunities. i feel like it kinda gives you street cred even you wanna do mid-size/pub int law later.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:58 pm

Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby UnicornHunter » Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I have no debt due to scholarships/working through law school. I continue to work in biglaw because the work is interesting and hours aren't really too bad. I do tech trans at firm in SF/SV. Hours are fairly predictable (9-7) unless on an M&A deal.


Op here. 9-7 on a regular basis sounds really awful. I currently have a 10-5/7 job but it's because my firm is shit. From what ppl posted here, transactional work sounds really depressing but not that much worse than lit.

I think I will try to get a biglaw job for reasons no other than to have better exit opportunities. i feel like it kinda gives you street cred even you wanna do mid-size/pub int law later.


Where are you in the process right now? Like there's no reason to not go to OCI, do a summer associateship, etc.. unless you are TRUEBELIEBER, but there's also no reason not to apply for clerkships, lit boutiques, gov. honors programs in areas you're interested in etc...

Like what the fuck do you want to do with a law degree? For some things, big law is a near necessity. For other things, big law is a borderline deal breaker. If you have absolutely no idea, it's a pretty good way to buy some time to figure things out, but you might also ask yourself why you're doing law in the first place.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:37 pm

I have no debt and will be doing biglaw for 5 years hopefully. I'll pull in over a million over 5 years post-tax, which is enough to pay off a nice house and save 500k, even after living costs.

And the reality is that most other non-biglaw legal jobs still require much more than 40-hr weeks.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby lavarman84 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I have no debt due to scholarships/working through law school. I continue to work in biglaw because the work is interesting and hours aren't really too bad. I do tech trans at firm in SF/SV. Hours are fairly predictable (9-7) unless on an M&A deal.


Op here. 9-7 on a regular basis sounds really awful. I currently have a 10-5/7 job but it's because my firm is shit. From what ppl posted here, transactional work sounds really depressing but not that much worse than lit.

I think I will try to get a biglaw job for reasons no other than to have better exit opportunities. i feel like it kinda gives you street cred even you wanna do mid-size/pub int law later.


The vast majority of decent-paying law jobs will require you to work something similar to 9-7.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby sublime » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I have no debt and will be doing biglaw for 5 years hopefully. I'll pull in over a million over 5 years post-tax, which is enough to pay off a nice house and save 500k, even after living costs.

And the reality is that most other non-biglaw legal jobs still require much more than 40-hr weeks.



Could you share how you figured the bolded? I looked at the salary scale and there is no way. And I don't know that the bonuses get you there either.

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Pomeranian » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.



OL here but curious.... is it frowned upon to post law school scholarship information on linkedin, resume, etc..

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby UnicornHunter » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:32 pm

Pomeranian wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.



OL here but curious.... is it frowned upon to post law school scholarship information on linkedin, resume, etc..


yes

e. maybe not resume if you have a named and prestigious scholarship

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Phil Brooks » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:35 pm

UnicornHunter wrote:
Pomeranian wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.



OL here but curious.... is it frowned upon to post law school scholarship information on linkedin, resume, etc..


yes

e. maybe not resume if you have a named and prestigious scholarship


Don't be this guy: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=262735

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jun 12, 2016 8:58 pm

Phil Brooks wrote:
UnicornHunter wrote:
Pomeranian wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.



OL here but curious.... is it frowned upon to post law school scholarship information on linkedin, resume, etc..


yes

e. maybe not resume if you have a named and prestigious scholarship


Don't be this guy: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=262735



It might be kind of douchey of him, but doesn't it show that he was a highly sought after candidate?

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby Nebby » Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Phil Brooks wrote:
UnicornHunter wrote:
Pomeranian wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Nebby wrote:
shruteHoosier wrote:Why would you need to be anonymous for this post?

Who knows man, who knows. Half the anon posts in legal employment have no reason to be anon but here we are


If classmates know this person, he or she may not want to broadcast that they are attending on full scholarship.



OL here but curious.... is it frowned upon to post law school scholarship information on linkedin, resume, etc..


yes

e. maybe not resume if you have a named and prestigious scholarship


Don't be this guy: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=262735



It might be kind of douchey of him, but doesn't it show that he was a highly sought after candidate?

Why is this anon?

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LaLiLuLeLo

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby LaLiLuLeLo » Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:14 pm

Imagine someone (no law) putting all the undergrad institutions they got into but didn't attend. What would you think then? Law isn't special; it's equally eye roll worthy. It doesn't make you look like a sought after candidate (and who would care?). It makes you look like a tool. There are enough arrogant, socially maladjusted douchebags in this profession, no need to encourage it more.

That being said, if your school has a scholarship that they only give to one person and it's the highest form of scholarship I think that's okay to put you're the "Dead Former Dean Scholar".

lavarman84

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Re: Is Biglaw for ppl with no debt?

Postby lavarman84 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:37 pm

Isn't the point of a resume to get you a job? Who looks at what scholarship you have when hiring? I think it's a terrible idea to put it on linkedin and a waste of space on your resume.



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