Quitting biglaw & notice

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radio1nowhere

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby radio1nowhere » Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:08 pm

I don't want to tell them immediately because I'm not sure what their reaction will be and I can't afford to have multiple months of no pay and a gap on my resume


To the extent you seem to be worried that your firm would actually fire you as a sort of "you can't quit, YOU'RE FIRED" type thing if you disclose the clerkship, I just can't imagine a V100 firm doing that. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot because all future associates would be deterred from giving the firm reasonable notice about doing clerkships or other future plans, and it's just generally a really bad look. You should be perfectly able to keep doing corp (or whatever you're doing now) until you leave for the clerkship.

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rpupkin

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby rpupkin » Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:54 pm

radio1nowhere wrote:
I don't want to tell them immediately because I'm not sure what their reaction will be and I can't afford to have multiple months of no pay and a gap on my resume

To the extent you seem to be worried that your firm would actually fire you as a sort of "you can't quit, YOU'RE FIRED" type thing if you disclose the clerkship, I just can't imagine a V100 firm doing that. They'd be shooting themselves in the foot because all future associates would be deterred from giving the firm reasonable notice about doing clerkships or other future plans, and it's just generally a really bad look.

The bolded is true, but there's an even bigger deterrent that helps OP: no big law firm wants to anger a federal judge. OP--telling the firm now that you're going to clerk probably makes it less likely that you'll be let go over the next year.

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:21 pm

rpupkin wrote:
$$$$$$ wrote:Month notice is insane - two weeks is plenty

Two weeks is not plenty in this situation. When someone accepts a clerkship offer while working at a firm, it's typical to let the firm know right away, even if the clerkship is a year or two out. When people accept offers to clerk and then wait until two or three months before leaving to tell their firm (usually this doesn't work because the firm finds out through other channels anyway), folks raise eyebrows. But two weeks? That's way outside the bounds of what is considered normal in the profession. I've never heard of someone accepting a clerkship offer a year out and then not telling their firm until a week or two before leaving.


Not necessarily. OP, I am in a similar situation. I'm also clerking in 2018 and switching practice groups, but I don't have the same bonus issue so I am waiting about 2-3 weeks before I leave to give my notice. I've spoken to people at my firm and they said this is totally fine. Maybe it is just my firm, or maybe it's because we're switching practice groups, but I think some people here are being too dramatic. People are right that quitting on just a few days notice is really bad though, but this is a little dramatic:

rpupkin wrote:Does your judge know of your "tell my firm the week before I leave" plans?

Yes, you are an at-will employee and can leave whenever and however you'd like, but your plan is weird and unprofessional. If you'd like to return to the practice of law after your clerkship, I'd reconsider your approach.

JusticeJackson

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby JusticeJackson » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:27 pm

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Last edited by JusticeJackson on Sat Dec 16, 2017 10:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rpupkin

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby rpupkin » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
$$$$$$ wrote:Month notice is insane - two weeks is plenty

Two weeks is not plenty in this situation. When someone accepts a clerkship offer while working at a firm, it's typical to let the firm know right away, even if the clerkship is a year or two out. When people accept offers to clerk and then wait until two or three months before leaving to tell their firm (usually this doesn't work because the firm finds out through other channels anyway), folks raise eyebrows. But two weeks? That's way outside the bounds of what is considered normal in the profession. I've never heard of someone accepting a clerkship offer a year out and then not telling their firm until a week or two before leaving.


Not necessarily. OP, I am in a similar situation. I'm also clerking in 2018 and switching practice groups, but I don't have the same bonus issue so I am waiting about 2-3 weeks before I leave to give my notice. I've spoken to people at my firm and they said this is totally fine. Maybe it is just my firm, or maybe it's because we're switching practice groups, but I think some people here are being too dramatic. People are right that quitting on just a few days notice is really bad though, but this is a little dramatic:

rpupkin wrote:Does your judge know of your "tell my firm the week before I leave" plans?

Yes, you are an at-will employee and can leave whenever and however you'd like, but your plan is weird and unprofessional. If you'd like to return to the practice of law after your clerkship, I'd reconsider your approach.

The bolded is a little dramatic, but I stand by it. The legal world is small. If you're going to clerk and if you'd like to work somewhere afterward, why do something weird like give just one week's notice before departing for a clerkship that you've had lined up for over a year? Even if OP doesn't want to return to her current firm, she should think about how her conduct affects her reputation. As I get more senior, I get more calls from friends at government agencies and other law firms about lateral and post-clerkship applicants whom I've worked with in the past. If OP provides one-week notice in this situation (which will likely end up screwing other associates), what do you think her colleagues will say if a friend calls to ask about her?

No, OP will not be blacklisted from practicing law if she gives unusually short notice, but she could needlessly damage her reputation (and thus potentially limit her opportunities) moving forward.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Aug 15, 2017 5:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
$$$$$$ wrote:Month notice is insane - two weeks is plenty

Two weeks is not plenty in this situation. When someone accepts a clerkship offer while working at a firm, it's typical to let the firm know right away, even if the clerkship is a year or two out. When people accept offers to clerk and then wait until two or three months before leaving to tell their firm (usually this doesn't work because the firm finds out through other channels anyway), folks raise eyebrows. But two weeks? That's way outside the bounds of what is considered normal in the profession. I've never heard of someone accepting a clerkship offer a year out and then not telling their firm until a week or two before leaving.


Not necessarily. OP, I am in a similar situation. I'm also clerking in 2018 and switching practice groups, but I don't have the same bonus issue so I am waiting about 2-3 weeks before I leave to give my notice. I've spoken to people at my firm and they said this is totally fine. Maybe it is just my firm, or maybe it's because we're switching practice groups, but I think some people here are being too dramatic. People are right that quitting on just a few days notice is really bad though, but this is a little dramatic:

rpupkin wrote:Does your judge know of your "tell my firm the week before I leave" plans?

Yes, you are an at-will employee and can leave whenever and however you'd like, but your plan is weird and unprofessional. If you'd like to return to the practice of law after your clerkship, I'd reconsider your approach.

So if people at your firm have said that giving notice 2-3 weeks before you leave is fine, don't they actually already know you're leaving?

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Pokemon

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby Pokemon » Tue Aug 15, 2017 5:22 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
rpupkin wrote:
$$$$$$ wrote:Month notice is insane - two weeks is plenty

Two weeks is not plenty in this situation. When someone accepts a clerkship offer while working at a firm, it's typical to let the firm know right away, even if the clerkship is a year or two out. When people accept offers to clerk and then wait until two or three months before leaving to tell their firm (usually this doesn't work because the firm finds out through other channels anyway), folks raise eyebrows. But two weeks? That's way outside the bounds of what is considered normal in the profession. I've never heard of someone accepting a clerkship offer a year out and then not telling their firm until a week or two before leaving.


Not necessarily. OP, I am in a similar situation. I'm also clerking in 2018 and switching practice groups, but I don't have the same bonus issue so I am waiting about 2-3 weeks before I leave to give my notice. I've spoken to people at my firm and they said this is totally fine. Maybe it is just my firm, or maybe it's because we're switching practice groups, but I think some people here are being too dramatic. People are right that quitting on just a few days notice is really bad though, but this is a little dramatic:

rpupkin wrote:Does your judge know of your "tell my firm the week before I leave" plans?

Yes, you are an at-will employee and can leave whenever and however you'd like, but your plan is weird and unprofessional. If you'd like to return to the practice of law after your clerkship, I'd reconsider your approach.

So if people at your firm have said that giving notice 2-3 weeks before you leave is fine, don't they actually already know you're leaving?



Maybe op prefaced it with if I were to leave, would...

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Re: Quitting biglaw & notice

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:24 am

OP here, thanks for the opinions/thoughts all. I hadn't really considered the post-clerkship world and as much as I dislike my practice area, I don't want to burn bridges.

I've decided to go ahead and give notice about a month or a month and a half or so out and discuss returning to the firm/how long they want to stay, which I think is a happy medium between a week notice and telling them now. I think it's probably true that there is a very small chance they would axe me immediately if I gave notice now, but I'm changing practice areas and even if it's unlikely, I'd rather not risk it and I'm sure they won't be happy no matter how early I tell them, so I don't think there's a real upside to telling them now vs. a few months from now.

This way I'm giving the firm sufficient notice and I can discuss how long they want me to stay to transition the matters I'm working on, while ensuring that I at least get paid and don't ruffle feathers for a few months.



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