Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
User avatar
UVA2B

Gold
Posts: 3466
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 10:48 pm

Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby UVA2B » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:15 pm

After a summer of researching firms pretty extensively, I've come to rely on certain sources more than others in interview prep, both for reliability of information and substantive info. What should students reliably use to discuss the work of the firm and the experience of an associate?

1. Chambers
2. NALP
3. TLS (obviously)
4. Vault
5. Law firm websites/press releases
6. [insert sources]

I just feel like most of us are making incomplete decisions based on very calculated interactions with the firm, but at the same time, there is a limit to public information available for law students to make these decisions.

What are law students missing or not leveraging enough to make the best choice?

User avatar
yyyuppp

Bronze
Posts: 140
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:52 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby yyyuppp » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:35 pm

not exactly public info, but contacting alumni at firms is pretty good

User avatar
UVA2B

Gold
Posts: 3466
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 10:48 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby UVA2B » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:36 pm

yyyuppp wrote:not exactly public info, but contacting alumni at firms is pretty good


That's a great source, but when do you think alumni should be leveraged? I imagine it would be post-offer or at least in the CB stage, but I'm willing/accepting I could be wrong about that.

RaceJudicata

Gold
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:51 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby RaceJudicata » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:43 pm

Bloomberg law if (1) you are interested in lit and (2) if your school gives you subscription. Gives full access to PACER, for free. Can get a better idea of types of cases/types of clients/etc.

Anonymous User
Posts: 327365
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:44 pm

UVA2B wrote:
yyyuppp wrote:not exactly public info, but contacting alumni at firms is pretty good


That's a great source, but when do you think alumni should be leveraged? I imagine it would be post-offer or at least in the CB stage, but I'm willing/accepting I could be wrong about that.


in my experience, every time i mentioned who i talked to at a firm during screeners the interviewers wrote it down. not sure what that meant, but some people seemed pleased you did that kind of research. also, in interviews you can be like "i talked to this person, and they said they had this experience doing x, and that is really what I'm looking for because whatever."

i also know people who got CBs and offers prior to OCI through these connections. just my experience though.

User avatar
yyyuppp

Bronze
Posts: 140
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2016 8:52 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby yyyuppp » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
yyyuppp wrote:not exactly public info, but contacting alumni at firms is pretty good


That's a great source, but when do you think alumni should be leveraged? I imagine it would be post-offer or at least in the CB stage, but I'm willing/accepting I could be wrong about that.


in my experience, every time i mentioned who i talked to at a firm during screeners the interviewers wrote it down. not sure what that meant, but some people seemed pleased you did that kind of research. also, in interviews you can be like "i talked to this person, and they said they had this experience doing x, and that is really what I'm looking for because whatever."

i also know people who got CBs and offers prior to OCI through these connections. just my experience though.



sorry that was me.

as for vault, chambers/partners/associate, i think its good to get general ideas about firms to make sure you aren't missing some big selling point of the firm before an interview. also helps you understand where you'd wanna work given work, culture etc

User avatar
UVA2B

Gold
Posts: 3466
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 10:48 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby UVA2B » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:48 pm

RaceJudicata wrote:Bloomberg law if (1) you are interested in lit and (2) if your school gives you subscription. Gives full access to PACER, for free. Can get a better idea of types of cases/types of clients/etc.


I always forget about Bloomberg, and it's a great research tool. I was told to hold off on setting up a PACER account because that account would have to follow me for the rest of my career. I deliberately held off on setting up a PACER account this past summer because I should set it up with my law firm email account. Thoughts?

User avatar
UVA2B

Gold
Posts: 3466
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 10:48 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby UVA2B » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:49 pm

yyyuppp wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
UVA2B wrote:
yyyuppp wrote:not exactly public info, but contacting alumni at firms is pretty good


That's a great source, but when do you think alumni should be leveraged? I imagine it would be post-offer or at least in the CB stage, but I'm willing/accepting I could be wrong about that.


in my experience, every time i mentioned who i talked to at a firm during screeners the interviewers wrote it down. not sure what that meant, but some people seemed pleased you did that kind of research. also, in interviews you can be like "i talked to this person, and they said they had this experience doing x, and that is really what I'm looking for because whatever."

i also know people who got CBs and offers prior to OCI through these connections. just my experience though.



sorry that was me.

as for vault, chambers/partners/associate, i think its good to get general ideas about firms to make sure you aren't missing some big selling point of the firm before an interview. also helps you understand where you'd wanna work given work, culture etc


Thanks for clarifying. All of your insight is really helpful.

RaceJudicata

Gold
Posts: 1726
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:51 pm

Re: Law student research tools: the good, bad, and the ugly

Postby RaceJudicata » Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:58 am

UVA2B wrote:
RaceJudicata wrote:Bloomberg law if (1) you are interested in lit and (2) if your school gives you subscription. Gives full access to PACER, for free. Can get a better idea of types of cases/types of clients/etc.


I always forget about Bloomberg, and it's a great research tool. I was told to hold off on setting up a PACER account because that account would have to follow me for the rest of my career. I deliberately held off on setting up a PACER account this past summer because I should set it up with my law firm email account. Thoughts?


Within Bloomberg you can access PACER. No need to set up a real PACER account. Login to bloomberg law --> Search "Docket Search" --> then fill it whatever info you want (e.g., specific lawyer; firm; jurisdiction; docket number; etc.)



Return to “Legal Employment�

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.