Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

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Anonymous User
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 21, 2009 3:50 pm

I worked at a real estate law practice for a summer; pretty straightforward just contracts stuff, no douchery unless self-inflicted.

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longhornem
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby longhornem » Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:29 pm

laidoffjournalist wrote:The one thing I hear and fear about being a lawyer is that you essentially ruin people's days on a regular basis. I mean, it's kind of the essence of a lawsuit is that it begins a dispute between people. As a newspaper reporter, I regularly would question the integrity of people and report on it -- that really was hard for me to do at first, but eventually I became callous enough that shitting all over people in print didn't bother me one bit. But still, I'd like to go into an area of law where I feel relatively less of an asshole than other areas.

For example, I have no interest in criminal law because a) I don't want to defend scum-bags b) feel the burden of making sure scum-bags get punished. I also don't want to do family law because getting involved in people's divorces and custody battles sounds like the most emotionally draining, depressing thing ever. Which areas of law are a little more benign? Personally, I have my eye on education law so I can work for a school district and collect a nice pension. I'm also interested in civil rights law and intellectual property law. Anything related to cyberlaw and communications law would be great too, I think.

Thoughts?


Just so you know, this can be a problem, too. I worked for a children's legal services non-profit over the summer and a large number of the situations were with schools - typically, school districts trying to provide as little as possible in the way of special ed services, when children with physical and emotional disabilities are entitled to a lot under federal law (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Individual ... cation_Act). There's a lot of the school and the parents going to court over whether, for example, the autistic kid should be in the class with all the troublemakers or whether the school should let the kid with speech problems go to a speech therapist. It can interesting if that's your thing, but don't think it's all benign, non-confrontational, and something you can do with absolutely no qualms. Not to mention the emotionally draining aspect.

Oblomov
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Oblomov » Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:37 pm

Posner wrote:I have heard that transactional practice areas are less confrontational (i.e. corporate, real estate, IP transactions, tax). Litigation is inherently confrontational and will get nasty at times. Transactional law isn't all sunshine though. Even if the other side of the deal is great, clients/partners can be demanding and get impatient at times.


Further, I suspect when it does get nastier it's more "business" and less "personal."

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:45 pm

I cut my profesional teeth in transportation. I had to deal with some awfully rough characters and confrontations were a fact of life. To me it's second nature. I dealt with some bad asses and if you ever acted scared you were toast. The practice of law is vicious, mean, nasty not to mention down and dirty. I imagine that politics in thetransactions side can be pretty nasty. It's not the genteel arena portrayed by Hollywood. It's tough as hell !

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rayiner
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby rayiner » Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:50 pm

Lame way to pick a profession. You'll have to deal with egos in any practice, and indeed in any field. In a previous job, I'd literally be assigned to babysit our lead engineer in meetings with the customer because he was such a egomaniacal dbag.

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:06 pm

Raynier I agree with you. In my current position I have to nursemaid my customers or my competition will. This jerks a knot in my ass ! Is accountabilty not in fashion anymore ? It appears as though it's not.

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GeePee
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby GeePee » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:08 pm

New question:

If you're not into confrontation... why the fuck are you becoming a lawyer?

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laidoffjournalist
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby laidoffjournalist » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:10 pm

I'm fine with confrontation, but I have my limits. Specifically, I don't want to deal with criminals, family break-ups and death. I'm trying to figure out what else I want to avoid. Thanks.

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:18 pm

Laidoffjournalist you better get mean as hell or the legal field will eat your lunch ! I dealt with criminals for 15 years in the trucking business. I sat down across the table with "Made" guys from the various families. Was I scared ? FUCK YES I WAS SCARED ! But I did it. I understand not wanting to do criminal law, it's nasty. However, I believe that virtually all areas of law have the potential to get ugly.

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Kompressor
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Kompressor » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:29 pm

Divorce law, obviously.

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laidoffjournalist
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby laidoffjournalist » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:39 pm

texaslawyer wrote:Laidoffjournalist you better get mean as hell or the legal field will eat your lunch ! I dealt with criminals for 15 years in the trucking business. I sat down across the table with "Made" guys from the various families. Was I scared ? FUCK YES I WAS SCARED ! But I did it. I understand not wanting to do criminal law, it's nasty. However, I believe that virtually all areas of law have the potential to get ugly.

That's what everyone said about the news business. "You better be aggressive or it will eat you alive." It didn't. I can adapt. I can become a callous jerk. I'm pretty sure stuff I have written in the news has gotten people fired. It's forced people to resign their jobs and triggered lawsuits. Whatever. I dealt with that and I will deal with whatever happens as a lawyer. But that doesn't mean I can't want to avoid the worst of it. I don't see why I deserve any flack for that.

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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:42 pm

texaslawyer wrote:Laidoffjournalist you better get mean as hell or the legal field will eat your lunch ! I dealt with criminals for 15 years in the trucking business. I sat down across the table with "Made" guys from the various families. Was I scared ? FUCK YES I WAS SCARED ! But I did it. I understand not wanting to do criminal law, it's nasty. However, I believe that virtually all areas of law have the potential to get ugly.

I think this is a bit harsh. From my experience (granted I'm a 3L), the law is not nearly as scary as you are making it out to be. Can negotiations get intense? Yes. But you won't be threatened and you don't have to be downright nasty in non-litigation practice areas. You need to be confident, firm and ready to advocate for your client, but that doesn't mean you need to go for the jugular and have a killer instinct.

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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Pearalegal » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:46 pm

laidoffjournalist wrote:That's what everyone said about the news business. "You better be aggressive or it will eat you alive." It didn't. I can adapt. I can become a callous jerk. I'm pretty sure stuff I have written in the news has gotten people fired. It's forced people to resign their jobs and triggered lawsuits. Whatever. I dealt with that and I will deal with whatever happens as a lawyer. But that doesn't mean I can't want to avoid the worst of it. I don't see why I deserve any flack for that.



I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting to avoid the less attractive side of any profession, but you're probably getting flack because you're listing things you don't want to work in before you even know what areas of law interest you through going to actual law school...which can come off overly-picky and a little light-hearted.

Just my suggestion, but I'd wait until you get involved in your studies and see what really interests you...then worry about the nastier sides of the type of law you're attracted to. You might even find your passion for the type of work is more important than your adversion to a particular part of it.

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:47 pm

Divorce law to the legal profession is what proctology is to the medical profession. If you want to make the big bucks, you better get almost predatory. Some can, some can't. You don't deserve flack, I feel like we are expressing ojective and opinions and observed facts. I want to be a criminal defense attorney. Bring on the druggies, DUIs, perverts, etc. Most criminal defense attorneys are bleeding heart liberals. I'm a fairly conservative Republican. I catch a lot of grief over that. I do believe in the death penalty, but I would do everything in my power to save a client's life. Capital cases are the ugliest in my opinion. Rarely will anyone win an acquittal there. Life without parole, from my observation is about as good as you can hope for.

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normalien
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby normalien » Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:52 pm

Tax

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Kompressor
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Kompressor » Mon Sep 21, 2009 7:03 pm

normalien wrote:Tax


I dunno, that creates much confrontation between metal forks and your eye.

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CE2JD
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby CE2JD » Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:16 am

Saying you want to work in law but without having contact with assholes is like saying you want to work in medicine but without having contact with the human body (and I mean not even looking at bones or anything).

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angiej
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby angiej » Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:30 am

CE2JD wrote:Saying you want to work in law but without having contact with assholes is like saying you want to work in medicine but without having contact with the human body (and I mean not even looking at bones or anything).


This is true, but isn't it like that in every profession? :lol:

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Kiersten1985
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Kiersten1985 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:42 am

EVERY area of law can get confrontational and assholey. It all depends on where you work and who your clients are. If you're dealing with any case where multimillion/billion dollar deals/settlements are at hand, people are going to be [rightfully] stressed and aggressive.

I also think people confuse that aggression with being an asshole. You can be a tiger in the courtroom and not be an asshole. Attorneys get stressed, but that's the work talking, not them.

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:15 am

I suppose there are some areas of law that are nice and tranquil and one can get a nice pension out of it. Government law in some areas might be like this, I don't know. But whenever money, lives and property are on the line, it can get nasty. When estates are being settled and it can get so nasty and estrangment is usually the net result. Especially when wives get involved. Talk about a shitstorm !

VerdiShmerdi
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby VerdiShmerdi » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:20 am

If you're not afraid to go toe-to-toe for victory, I would suggest bird law.

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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby ScaredWorkedBored » Tue Sep 22, 2009 12:31 pm

My father does transactional and restructuring/commerical bankruptcy work for a bank. Probably about every 4th person he talks to is an asshole with some extremely unrealistic position. They usually have drug along legal counsel that is clearly being ignored, or they have given marching orders to the lawyer to the same effect.

He doesn't really consider it confrontational because he's the money in the situation and usually tells the guy to come back when he's serious. Moderately stressful for him (no one likes listening to jerks); very stressful for counsel for the asshole client. Client wants you to negotiate and get something that the bank just said is a non-starter. Not their opening position, mind you. They just said they won't negotiate at all. Now you have to make that phone call.

Lawyers are agents. The stress can easily come from both sides.

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Jim_Stansel
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby Jim_Stansel » Tue Sep 22, 2009 12:37 pm

CE2JD wrote:Saying you want to work in law but without having contact with assholes is like saying you want to work in medicine but without having contact with the human body (and I mean not even looking at bones or anything).


What CE2JD is trying to say here is that if you want to avoid having "contact with assholes," you are even better off becoming a proctologist than a lawyer.

texaslawyer
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Re: Least confrontational, assholely area of law?

Postby texaslawyer » Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:55 pm

ScaredWorkedBored I can believe it. People generally have unrealistic expectations of any professional and feel gypped whenever they aren't met. I'm an insurance agent and people want "full coverage". There is no such animal. Talk about whores, insurance companies are the biggest hookers in the cathouse. It's a racket. The only difference between me and John Gotti is that I'm legal and licensed and he wasn't. Clients get pissed whn you can't provide all coverage known to man at a bargain basement price.




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