180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

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180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:29 pm

180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY? I'm interested in transactional practice.
I plan to move to a biglaw firm in a big city in 2-3 years. What would give me a better opportunity?

tyroneslothrop1

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby tyroneslothrop1 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:33 pm

180K in the middle nowhere compared 130-150K in NY will net you like an extra 70K a year.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Damage Over Time » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:41 pm

180k in the middle of nowhere sounds fantastic, assuming COL is accordingly cheap

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jchiles

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby jchiles » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:42 pm

I am skeptical that a firm paying 180K is truly in the middle of nowhere, especially if this is entry level or close to it.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:43 pm

What kind of work do these two firms actually do?

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby lolwat » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:47 pm

jchiles wrote:I am skeptical that a firm paying 180K is truly in the middle of nowhere, especially if this is entry level or close to it.


There are a few such firms. But otherwise it's often a biglaw firm that has an office in the "middle of nowhere."
I'd certainly take the 180k firm, but given the OP's goals of lateraling to a big firm in a big city in a few years, though... who knows if this 180k middle-of-nowhere firm will get him there. There's not enough info at all...

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby pancakes3 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:49 pm

I don't get the conflict. Take the 180 and run.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby RedPurpleBlue » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:03 pm

jchiles wrote:I am skeptical that a firm paying 180K is truly in the middle of nowhere, especially if this is entry level or close to it.


My guess is "middle of nowhere" is like Portland, Oklahoma City, or some other reasonably sized secondary city. I know some people who consider anything not NYC, LA, and Chicago to be the middle of nowhere. Hell, I know some people from NYC who think everything that isn't NYC is the middle of nowhere.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby SmokeytheBear » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:04 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I plan to move to a biglaw firm in a big city in 2-3 years.


This may be difficult to do depending on the firm you start out at or the city you start out in. Don't count your chickens before the fat lady sings.
Last edited by SmokeytheBear on Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Danger Zone » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:05 pm

It's insane that you're even considering NYC in this instance
Last edited by Danger Zone on Sat Jan 27, 2018 2:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby merde_happens » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:11 pm

Could be something like Cooley's Reston office or Skadden's Wilmington office. I would not consider either of those to truly be "middle of nowhere" myself, but mileage varies.

The $180k paying firm seems like the right call, although sometimes in these randomly-located offices you can get shoehorned into niche work -- i.e. the work that provides the justification for having an office in the "middle of nowhere". So it might be worth looking into that.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby pancakes3 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:15 pm

RedPurpleBlue wrote:
jchiles wrote:I am skeptical that a firm paying 180K is truly in the middle of nowhere, especially if this is entry level or close to it.


My guess is "middle of nowhere" is like Portland, Oklahoma City, or some other reasonably sized secondary city. I know some people who consider anything not NYC, LA, and Chicago to be the middle of nowhere. Hell, I know some people from NYC who think everything that isn't NYC is the middle of nowhere.


0L? DC lit boutique paying is the literal grail for T13 strivers every year.

I'm guessing OP's at UT choosing between Houston practicing oil&gas vs. rando NYC firm.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:22 pm

Any firm that can pay you market paying (assuming reasonably large) has enough name brand to get you to a bigger market and most likely greater name brand than a NY firm that doesn't pay market.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby RedPurpleBlue » Wed Aug 30, 2017 5:34 pm

pancakes3 wrote:
RedPurpleBlue wrote:
jchiles wrote:I am skeptical that a firm paying 180K is truly in the middle of nowhere, especially if this is entry level or close to it.


My guess is "middle of nowhere" is like Portland, Oklahoma City, or some other reasonably sized secondary city. I know some people who consider anything not NYC, LA, and Chicago to be the middle of nowhere. Hell, I know some people from NYC who think everything that isn't NYC is the middle of nowhere.


0L? DC lit boutique paying is the literal grail for T13 strivers every year.

I'm guessing OP's at UT choosing between Houston practicing oil&gas vs. rando NYC firm.


1L. Many of my friends would consider DC the middle of nowhere (I never said they weren't ignorant or maybe even elitist). It's not really like the other three cities, despite being one of the largest legal markets in the US.

Your guess sounds pretty reasonable. Again though, it fits my description: a reasonably sized secondary city.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby 2014 » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:22 pm

I'm very skeptical that you could take your 130-150k firm job in NY and parlay it into anything market paying, not really the direction that type of move goes. I also don't know what your loan situation is but 130-150k does not go very far in New York if your loan payments are substantial and you are just going to burn out quicker if you are working NY hours for below market pay, sacrificing on apartment quality or location, probably with a roommate, generating no retirement savings to speak of, maintaining a strict budget, etc, etc. Not to suggest you will be destitute but you won't be building up wealth and won't have much in the way of an entertainment slush fund.

In light of all that, I don't think this is an actual dilemma.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Jchance » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:28 pm

Fish Richardson in Delaware or Minneapolis pays $180k/yr for 1st year. Take it and don't go to NYC.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Monochromatic Oeuvre » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:01 pm

There are no $180k jobs in the middle of nowhere and I have five to one OP is referring to St. Louis or something like that.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:16 pm

Monochromatic Oeuvre wrote:There are no $180k jobs in the middle of nowhere and I have five to one OP is referring to St. Louis or something like that.


My literal #1 metric in deciding which firm to pick was where I could make NYC market and pay the lowest cost of living. I did a ton of research at the time, and I don't believe STL has any market-paying firms. Could be wrong! I ended up in Denver, and feel like I'm cheating.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby lolwat » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:38 pm

The closest thing i can think of is a firm paying 150k in iowa. Which still isnt 180k. (I think they paid 160k back when that was market tho.)

But anyway, not enough info to give good advice besides the fact that money wise it would be a complete no brainer to take the 180k firm

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby SmokeytheBear » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Monochromatic Oeuvre wrote:There are no $180k jobs in the middle of nowhere and I have five to one OP is referring to St. Louis or something like that.


My literal #1 metric in deciding which firm to pick was where I could make NYC market and pay the lowest cost of living. I did a ton of research at the time, and I don't believe STL has any market-paying firms. Could be wrong! I ended up in Denver, and feel like I'm cheating.


I don't know, Lloyd. The French are assholes.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Monochromatic Oeuvre wrote:There are no $180k jobs in the middle of nowhere and I have five to one OP is referring to St. Louis or something like that.


My literal #1 metric in deciding which firm to pick was where I could make NYC market and pay the lowest cost of living. I did a ton of research at the time, and I don't believe STL has any market-paying firms. Could be wrong! I ended up in Denver, and feel like I'm cheating.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby elendinel » Wed Aug 30, 2017 9:23 pm

Biglaw doesn't hire based on how much money you earned in your first job, so you need more details here before anyone can help you (like what kind of firm is each firm, what would you be doing at each firm, what "big city" are you aiming for, etc.).

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Graybrow » Wed Aug 30, 2017 9:52 pm

There aren't that many markets that pay 180k in the "middle of nowhere". I'm curious what market this might be.

If he's referring to Chicago though (and some people do refer to Chicago as the middle of nowhere) then he can fuck right off back to NYC.

Actual advice though, take the 180k.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:20 pm

OP here. I apologize for being unclear. To be simple, I was referring to states like Ohio, Kansas, Indiana as "middle of nowhere." Sorry if I offended anyone. I've only lived in LA, NY, and DC. I guess I was being a snob here.

About the practice area, I want to do tax/corporate law and both of the firms are known for tax/corp in the area. It seems like most of you guys are considering money first but for me it's more about my career outlook than anything.. I would really like to move back to LA or NY after 2-3 years.

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Re: 180K firm in the middle of nowhere or 130-150K firm in NY?

Postby UVA2B » Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I apologize for being unclear. To be simple, I was referring to states like Ohio, Kansas, Indiana as "middle of nowhere." Sorry if I offended anyone. I've only lived in LA, NY, and DC. I guess I was being a snob here.

About the practice area, I want to do tax/corporate law and both of the firms are known for tax/corp in the area. It seems like most of you guys are considering money first but for me it's more about my career outlook than anything.. I would really like to move back to LA or NY after 2-3 years.


Ok, so since you're considering a move to a more major market, what are the prospects like at your current big firm that pays NYC market in a secondary market? Can you realistically plan a lateral to those markets in your current firm, or will you be relying on finding a new firm? That's pretty fundamental to your question.



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