Assistant D.A. and Reserve Military Officer to Law Firm

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Assistant D.A. and Reserve Military Officer to Law Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:47 am

I'm hoping y'all can look into a crystal ball for me. I'm entering my 3L year at HLS. I think that I want to get some trial experience before writing memos for 8 years. That being said, I don't want to close the door on BigLaw salaries. Has anyone ever heard of someone going to a DA's office (while being in the Reserve JAG corps) and then (after a few years) going to BigLaw? I figure the trial experience would be amazing for me, and I'd imagine an asset to a firm... but idk.

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Re: Assistant D.A. and Reserve Military Officer to Law Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:55 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm hoping y'all can look into a crystal ball for me. I'm entering my 3L year at HLS. I think that I want to get some trial experience before writing memos for 8 years. That being said, I don't want to close the door on BigLaw salaries. Has anyone ever heard of someone going to a DA's office (while being in the Reserve JAG corps) and then (after a few years) going to BigLaw? I figure the trial experience would be amazing for me, and I'd imagine an asset to a firm... but idk.


There's a big difference between trial experience in federal court (where most biglaw litigation occurs) and state court. As a result, I doubt the skills are really that transferable. The only office I've seen where former ADAs go to biglaw is Manhattan DA.

blaze1306

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Re: Assistant D.A. and Reserve Military Officer to Law Firm

Postby blaze1306 » Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:31 pm

I am at a DA office right now and I am looking to go to a Firm. I would prefer a small to medium firm as I have family medical responsibilities that could cause me to miss some work and as I understand it smaller firms tend to "understand" more. I am in a little bit of a different boat as I already have corporate experience but there is a debate as to how firms see experience gained a DA office.

First of all about me. Tier 4 school. I have two years working for a consultancy group with AT&T doing contracts and land acquisition for senior counsel at AT&T. When AT&T bought Directv we all lost our jobs. Now I am working at a DA office and just took the UBE. My undergrad degree is in biology and chemistry so I will be taking the Patent bar as soon as I can afford the study materials. I really think this will help me get into a firm.

I am just now beginning my search for a Firm job and I am not sure how my experience will be taken. Most of my coworkers are convinced that the litigation we do as prosecutors is analogous to the corporation litigation advertised in most job post (not to mention my corp. law experience). I am not so sure. I am convinced that my experience should be just as good as any judicial law clerk out there. A judicial clerk will work with one or a few Judges, we as prosecutors work with 4-5 Judges everyday via motions and direct courtroom experience. We do depositions, prepare witnesses and work through all aspects of litigation and trial from voir dire to closing arguments. Clerks don't get to do that...I am wondering how to best establish this on my cover letter and resume.

Other members of the office don't think corp. litigation and the criminal litigation we do here at the DA is anywhere close to the same. These people think that without working in a civil firm, the litigation experience is not the same and cant be compared. My argument is, at a firm the majority of civil litigation isn't in the court room and unless you are a senior you wont get close to depositions or preparing witnesses or a courtroom for years, so how do you get the experience prosecutors already have?

I am looking for input.



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