1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

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1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:13 am

I did some work over Christmas break at the firm I worked for prior to law school and they offered me a position over the summer. It's paid (not biglaw $ but a nice chunk of change), and the firm is probably the top in its niche practice area.

I'm unsure of whether to accept for a couple of reasons. First, would it look bad during OCI if I've only worked ever for one firm? Again the work they do is pretty niche so I don't know if that would be a detriment. Some biglaw firms have small practice groups for this area but my understanding is that it's not quite the same.

I'm not sure if I want to continue with this practice area once I become an attorney, but at the same time I kinda like it and have a good relationship with a few important partners. Basically, I don't want to burn bridges with anyone.

Lastly, I'm a URM and I've applied to a couple (literally 2) diversity SAs and haven't heard back yet. I know these really hard to get but is it worth eschewing the opportunity altogether? I was planning on applying to more this weekend but I'm not sure if I'm too late anyway.

Thanks in advance - happy new year!

foregetaboutdre

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby foregetaboutdre » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:18 am

Anonymous User wrote:I did some work over Christmas break at the firm I worked for prior to law school and they offered me a position over the summer. It's paid (not biglaw $ but a nice chunk of change), and the firm is probably the top in its niche practice area.

I'm unsure of whether to accept for a couple of reasons. First, would it look bad during OCI if I've only worked ever for one firm? Again the work they do is pretty niche so I don't know if that would be a detriment. Some biglaw firms have small practice groups for this area but my understanding is that it's not quite the same.

I'm not sure if I want to continue with this practice area once I become an attorney, but at the same time I kinda like it and have a good relationship with a few important partners. Basically, I don't want to burn bridges with anyone.

Lastly, I'm a URM and I've applied to a couple (literally 2) diversity SAs and haven't heard back yet. I know these really hard to get but is it worth eschewing the opportunity altogether? I was planning on applying to more this weekend but I'm not sure if I'm too late anyway.

Thanks in advance - happy new year!


1. No I don't think it would impact you whatsoever at OCI.

2. Not super sure on URM 1L SA's, but I lost the 1L SA sweepstakes (after getting a CB) so I'd honestly take it ASAP. Then you get the job stuff behind you and can totally focus on 2nd semester (and kill it for 2L OCI).

tomwatts

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby tomwatts » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:43 am

You'll need to prepare answers to a couple of questions that you may get asked at OCI: 1) Are you intending to go back to that firm when you graduate? (Your answer is "No" and you'll need some kind of explanation.) 2) Are you set on that particular practice area? (You probably want to answer "No" and give some kind of explanation.)

If you can come up with reasonably convincing answers to those two questions, I can't imagine that this will hurt you at OCI.

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BmoreOrLess

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby BmoreOrLess » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:41 am

tomwatts wrote:You'll need to prepare answers to a couple of questions that you may get asked at OCI: 1) Are you intending to go back to that firm when you graduate? (Your answer is "No" and you'll need some kind of explanation.) 2) Are you set on that particular practice area? (You probably want to answer "No" and give some kind of explanation.)

If you can come up with reasonably convincing answers to those two questions, I can't imagine that this will hurt you at OCI.


Just to be clear, both of these will be extremely easy to answer in some fashion. And 2) doesn’t need to be no. If the firm you’re interviewing with has that practice area, your answer will be something like “1L firm gave me experience in this area, but I think your firm would be a better fit for me for X, Y, and Z.” And then in your next interview with a firm that doesn’t, it’s an easy “I found the practice area interesting, but I don’t think it’s a great fit for me because of X, Y, and Z. Your firm’s practice areas would be a better fit for me because of A, B, and C.

The only reasonable risk here is not getting a return offer, but even still if it’s a smaller firm that can be easily played off as “they cannot project their current needs at this time” (which may be very true). Even there, I doubt you’ll be asked about a return offer if it’s not biglaw.

This seems like a no-brainer if you’re not looking great for a 1L SA (which barely anyone ever is).

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strawberrieee

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby strawberrieee » Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:17 am

What is the deadline to accept this offer? Can you wait until after you're done with 1L SA interviews to let them know your decision? I was in a similar situation (working at a law firm before law school and getting an offer to come back for 1L summer). But I was certain that I wanted 1L SA at biglaw, so I applied to 50+ biglaw while keeping that offer open, considering going back to the old firm only as a backup plan.

To address your concern, I don't think it hurts you in any way in OCI to accept the offer. The matter is whether you want to go through the 1L SA application process before accepting it. I think you should. It's not too late to apply for 1L SA, but you need to apply to more (think mass mailing).

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:48 am

strawberrieee wrote:What is the deadline to accept this offer? Can you wait until after you're done with 1L SA interviews to let them know your decision? I was in a similar situation (working at a law firm before law school and getting an offer to come back for 1L summer). But I was certain that I wanted 1L SA at biglaw, so I applied to 50+ biglaw while keeping that offer open, considering going back to the old firm only as a backup plan.

To address your concern, I don't think it hurts you in any way in OCI to accept the offer. The matter is whether you want to go through the 1L SA application process before accepting it. I think you should. It's not too late to apply for 1L SA, but you need to apply to more (think mass mailing).


OP here--they haven't given me a deadline but I imagine it would be sooner rather than later. They just gave me the offer today (the 28th). And re: 1L SA interviews, I haven't received any interview offers yet and there's no telling if I will. My fear is if I keep this offer on the back burner for too long they'll rescind and then I'll be scrambling.

tomwatts

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby tomwatts » Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:32 pm

BmoreOrLess wrote:Just to be clear, both of these will be extremely easy to answer in some fashion. And 2) doesn’t need to be no. If the firm you’re interviewing with has that practice area, your answer will be something like “1L firm gave me experience in this area, but I think your firm would be a better fit for me for X, Y, and Z.” And then in your next interview with a firm that doesn’t, it’s an easy “I found the practice area interesting, but I don’t think it’s a great fit for me because of X, Y, and Z. Your firm’s practice areas would be a better fit for me because of A, B, and C.

The only reasonable risk here is not getting a return offer, but even still if it’s a smaller firm that can be easily played off as “they cannot project their current needs at this time” (which may be very true). Even there, I doubt you’ll be asked about a return offer if it’s not biglaw.

I agree with this — I just meant that you should come up with X, Y, and Z and A, B, and C in advance and run them by your career advising office to make sure they're not stupid.

Anonymous User wrote:OP here--they haven't given me a deadline but I imagine it would be sooner rather than later. They just gave me the offer today (the 28th). And re: 1L SA interviews, I haven't received any interview offers yet and there's no telling if I will. My fear is if I keep this offer on the back burner for too long they'll rescind and then I'll be scrambling.

It would be bad form to rescind without warning. (Not that it's impossible that they would do it, just that it would be bad form.) Given that you have no clear timeline for your other applications, if you're concerned, you can ask your old firm when they need to hear back from you. Express interest in the offer, say that you're still evaluating your options, ask when they need a response — a relatively simple email.

drich88

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby drich88 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:36 pm

I would take the job and never look back. It won't hurt you at OCI

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landshoes

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby landshoes » Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:43 pm

There's no way this hurts you at OCI. A job at a well-respected firm---that asked you back after seeing your work---looks great. "Only working at one firm" is absolutely not a problem in this scenario. It indicates that you are valued and well-liked by that firm, instead of just tolerated because they already committed to you for a summer.

I agree that you should ask them explicitly how long you have to decide.

RaceJudicata

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Re: 1L Summer Offer at Old Firm

Postby RaceJudicata » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:02 pm

I “only worked at one firm” prior to 2L oci. And It was the shittiest of shit. Think personal injury/workers comp mill. Low value cases. Pure volume.

Didn’t impact me at all during my t2 school’s oci. Focus on grades and you’ll be fine.

Also, having experience at a law firm - regardless of the type of firm - puts you ahead of the vast majority of your classmates.



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