Need Advice on Working for the Gov't After Law School

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

Need Advice on Working for the Gov't After Law School

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 07, 2009 10:49 am

I have two questions:

Question #1:

Will any (likely federal) government job take me seriously 3L year if I have 2 summers working at a law firm (mid-sized first summer, V50 second summer) under my belt? What about after a clerkship?

My UG involvement shows a committment to public service, for what that's worth.

I'm doing the law firm thing again (1) because I actually might want to do it after law school, my skepticism from last summer might be born out of the fact that it was a state-wide, not a global firm; and (2) I got an offer and since there is no guarantee with government jobs... I felt stupid not to take it.

Question #2:

Is between 60-70K in debt doable on a government salary in a major market? I just want a normal life, I don't need the big bucks, but I also don't want to be eating ramen and constantly worrying about money.

Thanks...

hank44
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:20 am

Re: Need Advice on Working for the Gov't After Law School

Postby hank44 » Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:04 am

Anonymous User wrote:I have two questions:

Question #1:

Will any (likely federal) government job take me seriously 3L year if I have 2 summers working at a law firm (mid-sized first summer, V50 second summer) under my belt? What about after a clerkship?

My UG involvement shows a committment to public service, for what that's worth.

I'm doing the law firm thing again (1) because I actually might want to do it after law school, my skepticism from last summer might be born out of the fact that it was a state-wide, not a global firm; and (2) I got an offer and since there is no guarantee with government jobs... I felt stupid not to take it.

Question #2:

Is between 60-70K in debt doable on a government salary in a major market? I just want a normal life, I don't need the big bucks, but I also don't want to be eating ramen and constantly worrying about money.

Thanks...


haha ramen....well as a 0L, take this with the proverbial grain of salt. I have worked and currently work with public sector attorneys. The salaries really aren't so bad. Two points though. One, the jobs aren't necessarily easy to come by, especially now - which you obviously know. The difference is, people that get these govt jobs stick with them for years, and why wouldnt they. The turnover rate is much much lower from what ive seen. Second, a lot of the people I work with/have worked with, tend to get experience in a big DA's office of some other form of trial experience, etc before landing a 9-5 govt job. Got to pay your dues it seems, and rightly so. That said, since I myself am looking into law school, Ive talked to many of them and none of them regret having loans on a public salary. If you can budget, and I dont mean count pennies, just sensible budgeting, and you dont want tons and tons of dough, its certainly doable. With a couple years of experience (literally 5 or less) I see people making 75-90k working a 9-5 office job. Even with monthly loan bills, I dont see how you can beat that IF its what you want...

USAIRS
Posts: 134
Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:08 pm

Re: Need Advice on Working for the Gov't After Law School

Postby USAIRS » Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:56 am

1. I'm sure one will but you would at least have to demonstrate an interest in their particular area of law. You should think more specifically about exactly which agency for which you want to work, and take affirmative steps this year to make yourself attractive. They do like to see government interest demonstrated as well, so I suggest externing with a local government office in spring. You should apply for those right now.

2. You'll feel very good with only 70k debt. Federal jobs in most major markets get you to 100k in three years.




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