My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

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fearless16

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My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby fearless16 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:27 pm

I'll make this as succinct as possible.

I went to law school after 10 years in another career. After graduation, I failed the bar but was able to leverage my previous career into a law-related field and eventually make a career in compliance. A few more unsuccessful attempts passed. I moved up to a director role in compliance and FINALLY this past year, was able to successfully pass my neighboring state's bar. (with help from therapy and a good tutor.)

Based on some of the responses I see on this forum, I'm going to guess that I'm a bit older than most folks here. I actually like compliance (I'm in healthcare) but want to see if I can use that experience to get an associate general counsel role in my current state or, in the alternative, be a hired gun for a solo or small firm in the neighboring state where I am barred (I don't plan to move there for the foreseeable future). I am quite unhappy at the very large corporation I've recently joined after my last company shut its doors.

My questions are the following:

1. I plan to go to neighboring state's annual bar association meeting for networking. I need an elevator speech that doesn't focus on the my multiple bar failures but on all the success I've had in spite of it.

2. My local bar association has a volunteer lawyer program. Has anyone ever used one of those in order to both help the community and gain some legal experience?

3. Is it feasible that a solo or small firm would be open to hire someone remotely?

Thanks, everyone.

NonTradHealthLaw

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby NonTradHealthLaw » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:03 pm

1. There's no reason to bring up bar failures in an elevator speech -- or, ever again now that you've passed. Your work in compliance is particularly helpful in health care. Use that as the key component of your speech. By chance, do you have your HCCA certification?

2. Yes, get involved, particularly if it is a medico-legal partnership. These are a great opportunity to hone your craft, get to know practitioners in parallel fields, and to help the community. You probably are not going to get an AGC position at a health care institute with only compliance experience, but that past experience is undeniably valuable.

3. Feasible, certainly, but not extremely likely, though perhaps given your past career record, you may have better luck than others. There is no crystal ball for such a thing.

If health care law is something you're interested in pursuing, I would encourage you to join the American Health Lawyers Association. Lots of good networking and mentoring opportunities available through that organization.

fearless16

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby fearless16 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:08 pm

I'm taking the CHC exam at the beginning of June so I'll be certified by then. I just completed all my CEUs for the certification.

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Apr 25, 2017 4:56 pm

I don't have advice, because I'm a newer JD and brand new bar passer (passed on the 3rd try), but I wanted to check in because I'm in a similar position.

I currently work in healthcare compliance and I absolutely love it. No plans to leave/do something else right now, but in the later future I'd be interested in counsel for a hospital/health system.

Going to the HCCA academy and taking the CHC in the next few months.

1styearlateral

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby 1styearlateral » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:10 pm

Unless you've made your bar failures public and live in a small community, almost no one will even think to ask you when you passed the bar exam. It just doesn't come up. If you're admitted, that's all that matters.

That being said, the only thing keeping you back is your lack of legal experience. In-house positions generally require experience working as outside counsel or for many years in an in-house capacity where you would learn the issues that generally come up in day-to-day operation. There's a lot more with regards to in-house positions that you might not even think about, such as managing outside counsel, having foresight into potential litigation, and reducing your company's legal fees that you just wouldn't be able to put into context unless you were on the other side of the phone call.

As far as remote work that doesn't include remote doc review, it's probably unlikely as you have pretty much zero experience. Who do you expect to mentor/supervise you?

fearless16

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby fearless16 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:37 pm

As far as remote work that doesn't include remote doc review, it's probably unlikely as you have pretty much zero experience. Who do you expect to mentor/supervise you?

Clearly, I don't have the answer to this ... which I why I posted the question.

1styearlateral

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby 1styearlateral » Tue Apr 25, 2017 5:50 pm

fearless16 wrote:As far as remote work that doesn't include remote doc review, it's probably unlikely as you have pretty much zero experience. Who do you expect to mentor/supervise you?

Clearly, I don't have the answer to this ... which I why I posted the question.

By saying that I guess I was saying unlikely. But stranger things have happened. Apply anywhere and everywhere. Also, why not try to move up the ranks at your current gig?

fearless16

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Re: My long road to practice -- Non-trad/Newly barred. Help!

Postby fearless16 » Tue Apr 25, 2017 6:00 pm

Moving up where I am is a possibility but I'm not wild about the company culture. I'm leaving all my options open so if something interesting were to open up here, I'd definitely jump on it.



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