Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

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Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:30 pm

I am currently a 2nd year biglaw associate v100. I am thinking about potentially accepting a fed gov gig that heavily focuses on business and finance law. One thing that I am considering is down the road if I ever wanted to leave the government, what would be my options? Since the gig involves business and finance would I have a shot at coming back into a big firm? Would I be committing myself to a life of less than 160k?

I probably will take the job, I just want to know what I am getting myself into, and what doors I am closing.

Thanks!

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:36 pm

"Would I be committing myself to a life of less than 160k?"

The horror! lol

I've worked with several attorneys who did biglaw --> fedgov --> biglaw. Many times, they get to come back to the firm as partner or quickly make partner. It's a very common track especially if the subject area is relevant to biglaw practices, which it seems like yours is.

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:"Would I be committing myself to a life of less than 160k?"

The horror! lol



OP here. Fair enough mocking the above. I understand that 160k is ALOT of money. I still think its a fair question to ask, maybe I should have phrased it differently. Thanks for your real response after though

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I am currently a 2nd year biglaw associate v100. I am thinking about potentially accepting a fed gov gig that heavily focuses on business and finance law. One thing that I am considering is down the road if I ever wanted to leave the government, what would be my options? Since the gig involves business and finance would I have a shot at coming back into a big firm? Would I be committing myself to a life of less than 160k?

I probably will take the job, I just want to know what I am getting myself into, and what doors I am closing.

Thanks!


What fed gov agency/position focuses heavily on finance and business law? Just generally curious.

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 16, 2016 1:59 pm

I think it depends (I know...I know...) on many factors and some of which includes: 1. Why you're jumping ship; 2. Is it a competitive agency to get into; 3. does the agency practice a niche area of law; 4. Does the jump paint a coherent picture in which you're treating the job change part of the revolving door process. Based on my experience (we're not talking that much really) going back to biglaw would be most beneficial after you really built some recognition in the field and demonstrate your expertise.

Most gov folks I know, however, go to gov due to being burnt out rather than treating as revolving door. The finance will figure itself out (at least it did for me).

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think it depends (I know...I know...) on many factors and some of which includes: 1. Why you're jumping ship; 2. Is it a competitive agency to get into; 3. does the agency practice a niche area of law; 4. Does the jump paint a coherent picture in which you're treating the job change part of the revolving door process. Based on my experience (we're not talking that much really) going back to biglaw would be most beneficial after you really built some recognition in the field and demonstrate your expertise.

Most gov folks I know, however, go to gov due to being burnt out rather than treating as revolving door. The finance will figure itself out (at least it did for me).


Is DHS competitive/prestigious? And is a niche area of law good or bad?

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I think it depends (I know...I know...) on many factors and some of which includes: 1. Why you're jumping ship; 2. Is it a competitive agency to get into; 3. does the agency practice a niche area of law; 4. Does the jump paint a coherent picture in which you're treating the job change part of the revolving door process. Based on my experience (we're not talking that much really) going back to biglaw would be most beneficial after you really built some recognition in the field and demonstrate your expertise.

Most gov folks I know, however, go to gov due to being burnt out rather than treating as revolving door. The finance will figure itself out (at least it did for me).


Is DHS competitive/prestigious? And is a niche area of law good or bad?


DHS is not a prestigious position for the legal field per se (compared to other acronyms like DOJ SEC FTC) but it might be a competitive position to get to due its limited numbers and the appeal of a cushy gov job. In addition, folks in your field (national security??) value the expertise, skills, experiences, and connections you can pick up there.

Niche is good only if you intend to stay in that area and not become a generalist.

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby zot1 » Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:09 pm

DHS is an interesting agency. It has a lot of divisions and each division will provide you a different set of skills. They do have a procurement office, which would probably make it the easiest way to transition back to biglaw. The second best shot would probably be if you end up working in L&E. One of the most actively sued agency for ULPs is definitely DHS. That experience ought to be helpful to some biglaw firms.

Other than that, it can be a complete crapshoot. DHS is not necessarily prestigious, so name along won't carry you anywhere. However, depending on the division you fall into, you might be able to frame that experience in a way that would be attractive to firms.

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Re: Big law (2 years) >> Fed Gov >> Back to Biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 20, 2016 7:41 pm

Clue us in a little more on which agency?

There are two questions here: can I go back to biglaw after a couple years in government? Very likely yes; on the other hand: is it good for my career to spend that time in government? More difficult to say and dependent on the agency and your practice. By 'good for career' I mean partnership prospects, lateral and in-house hiring, other dream job, ect.



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