Salaries outside of biglaw?

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TheJudge
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Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby TheJudge » Tue Oct 20, 2009 2:33 am

I've been wondering what kinds of salaries people are looking at in small and medium sized firms outside the NLJ 250? For instance, what can you resonably expect to earn if you graduate from a T15-T25 somewhere around median?

Please answer under the assumption of normal economic condidtions.

Anonymous User
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 20, 2009 1:24 pm

TheJudge wrote:I've been wondering what kinds of salaries people are looking at in small and medium sized firms outside the NLJ 250? For instance, what can you resonably expect to earn if you graduate from a T15-T25 somewhere around median?

Please answer under the assumption of normal economic condidtions.


"Please answer under the assumption of normal economic condidtions"

Unfortunately, this IS normal economic conditions for post-recession hiring.

Many of my friends and I are top 33%/top 25% at a T25, and we've all been completely shut out of all NLJ 250 firms, and all of the smaller firms as well in secondary and tertiary markets. So, I'd go with $0 at the median, unless by T15-T25 you mean Vanderbilt or UCLA (Texas is apparently hyper-competitive, IIRC).

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joshikousei
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby joshikousei » Tue Oct 20, 2009 1:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Unfortunately, this IS normal economic conditions for post-recession hiring.

Many of my friends and I are top 33%/top 25% at a T25, and we've all been completely shut out of all NLJ 250 firms, and all of the smaller firms as well in secondary and tertiary markets. So, I'd go with $0 at the median, unless by T15-T25 you mean Vanderbilt or UCLA (Texas is apparently hyper-competitive, IIRC).


man, that is depressing.

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Matthies
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Matthies » Tue Oct 20, 2009 2:14 pm

ntzsch wrote:i want to know if the area in between the two humps on the bimodal graph of lawyer saleries is really existent, or if the area in between is just there because the math doesn't work with nothing there or something.


why would this be anonymous?


It exists, but not so much because there anr’t mid salary firms out there, but because the vast majority of law students don’t know how to target them. OCI and mass mailing don’t work well when a firm only needs one new hire, word of mouth and recommendations work best.

I’ve seen my friends find the mythical 80k mid law mid market job and every single one of them got it though knowing people in the legal community and getting recommend. Unfortunately if you strike out from OCI most students turn to mass mailing which is like throwing darts at a dart board blindfolded.

You have to settle for what you can get either unsolicited or through want ads, and if they are putting out a want ad its likely they could not get anyone recommended to them, last choice of anyone searching for a good employee is to wade through the stacks of crap you get from putting out an ad in the paper in hopes of finding that one good employee based simply on his resume.
When you only have one slot to fill, in a medium sized firm where keeping the other employees happy (by not hiring a guy who turns out to be a douchbag to the staff) you can’t take 10 SAs and hope 1-2 of them actually end up being decent lawyers, you often can;’t try them for the summer either, you will want to try to hire the right person for the job from the get go and take as little risk as possible, hence recoendations from other lawyers and judges who know the candidate and the quality of work they do and thier peersonality goes a hell of a long way for landing a mid firm job.

As to what lawyers make outside of biglaw check this 2008 salary report from Colorado. It will at least give you an idea. http://www.cobar.org/repository/LPM%20D ... Survey.pdf

Why these anonymous responses?

Anonymous User
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 20, 2009 3:49 pm

Matthies wrote:
ntzsch wrote:i want to know if the area in between the two humps on the bimodal graph of lawyer saleries is really existent, or if the area in between is just there because the math doesn't work with nothing there or something.


why would this be anonymous?


It exists, but not so much because there anr’t mid salary firms out there, but because the vast majority of law students don’t know how to target them. OCI and mass mailing don’t work well when a firm only needs one new hire, word of mouth and recommendations work best.

I’ve seen my friends find the mythical 80k mid law mid market job and every single one of them got it though knowing people in the legal community and getting recommend. Unfortunately if you strike out from OCI most students turn to mass mailing which is like throwing darts at a dart board blindfolded.

You have to settle for what you can get either unsolicited or through want ads, and if they are putting out a want ad its likely they could not get anyone recommended to them, last choice of anyone searching for a good employee is to wade through the stacks of crap you get from putting out an ad in the paper in hopes of finding that one good employee based simply on his resume.
When you only have one slot to fill, in a medium sized firm where keeping the other employees happy (by not hiring a guy who turns out to be a douchbag to the staff) you can’t take 10 SAs and hope 1-2 of them actually end up being decent lawyers, you often can;’t try them for the summer either, you will want to try to hire the right person for the job from the get go and take as little risk as possible, hence recoendations from other lawyers and judges who know the candidate and the quality of work they do and thier peersonality goes a hell of a long way for landing a mid firm job.

As to what lawyers make outside of biglaw check this 2008 salary report from Colorado. It will at least give you an idea. http://www.cobar.org/repository/LPM%20D ... Survey.pdf

Why these anonymous responses?



Some of us probably don't want to hurt our law school's enrollment by pointing out that even people on law review at t25 schools are getting shut out of mid-market firms. Also, some of us don't want publicly shamed by admitting we are 0-21 for even the smallest firms.

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Matthies
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Matthies » Tue Oct 20, 2009 3:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Matthies wrote:
ntzsch wrote:i want to know if the area in between the two humps on the bimodal graph of lawyer saleries is really existent, or if the area in between is just there because the math doesn't work with nothing there or something.


why would this be anonymous?


It exists, but not so much because there anr’t mid salary firms out there, but because the vast majority of law students don’t know how to target them. OCI and mass mailing don’t work well when a firm only needs one new hire, word of mouth and recommendations work best.

I’ve seen my friends find the mythical 80k mid law mid market job and every single one of them got it though knowing people in the legal community and getting recommend. Unfortunately if you strike out from OCI most students turn to mass mailing which is like throwing darts at a dart board blindfolded.

You have to settle for what you can get either unsolicited or through want ads, and if they are putting out a want ad its likely they could not get anyone recommended to them, last choice of anyone searching for a good employee is to wade through the stacks of crap you get from putting out an ad in the paper in hopes of finding that one good employee based simply on his resume.
When you only have one slot to fill, in a medium sized firm where keeping the other employees happy (by not hiring a guy who turns out to be a douchbag to the staff) you can’t take 10 SAs and hope 1-2 of them actually end up being decent lawyers, you often can;’t try them for the summer either, you will want to try to hire the right person for the job from the get go and take as little risk as possible, hence recoendations from other lawyers and judges who know the candidate and the quality of work they do and thier peersonality goes a hell of a long way for landing a mid firm job.

As to what lawyers make outside of biglaw check this 2008 salary report from Colorado. It will at least give you an idea. http://www.cobar.org/repository/LPM%20D ... Survey.pdf

Why these anonymous responses?



Also, some of us don't want publicly shamed by admitting we are 0-21 for even the smallest firms.


ouch, that sucks man. Start networking ASAP

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

Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 20, 2009 5:27 pm

Matthies wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Matthies wrote:
ntzsch wrote:i want to know if the area in between the two humps on the bimodal graph of lawyer saleries is really existent, or if the area in between is just there because the math doesn't work with nothing there or something.


why would this be anonymous?


It exists, but not so much because there anr’t mid salary firms out there, but because the vast majority of law students don’t know how to target them. OCI and mass mailing don’t work well when a firm only needs one new hire, word of mouth and recommendations work best.

I’ve seen my friends find the mythical 80k mid law mid market job and every single one of them got it though knowing people in the legal community and getting recommend. Unfortunately if you strike out from OCI most students turn to mass mailing which is like throwing darts at a dart board blindfolded.

You have to settle for what you can get either unsolicited or through want ads, and if they are putting out a want ad its likely they could not get anyone recommended to them, last choice of anyone searching for a good employee is to wade through the stacks of crap you get from putting out an ad in the paper in hopes of finding that one good employee based simply on his resume.
When you only have one slot to fill, in a medium sized firm where keeping the other employees happy (by not hiring a guy who turns out to be a douchbag to the staff) you can’t take 10 SAs and hope 1-2 of them actually end up being decent lawyers, you often can;’t try them for the summer either, you will want to try to hire the right person for the job from the get go and take as little risk as possible, hence recoendations from other lawyers and judges who know the candidate and the quality of work they do and thier peersonality goes a hell of a long way for landing a mid firm job.

As to what lawyers make outside of biglaw check this 2008 salary report from Colorado. It will at least give you an idea. http://www.cobar.org/repository/LPM%20D ... Survey.pdf

Why these anonymous responses?



Also, some of us don't want publicly shamed by admitting we are 0-21 for even the smallest firms.


ouch, that sucks man. Start networking ASAP


Career services has told me I've done more networking than "anyone they've ever met" and that I would undoubtedly come up with "something." Also, meeting with alumni at firms that did OCI here, they were shocked I wasn't hired with my strong GPA and my out-going personality. I haven't. I've decided to completely give up on firms, and just go the government/public interest route. If I'm going to be forced to take a vow of poverty, I'd at least like to do something interesting while I'm at it.

But I definitely think that this is more than the economy and might be a fundamental change in how firms do their hiring. I met with one partner of one of the largest tertiary-market firms for his particular city, and he said that not only did they get rid of their summer program for this year, but that he personally would like to see it gone forever since it hasn't "affected retention rates whatsoever," or netted them "better quality lawyers."

Anonymous User
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 20, 2009 5:35 pm

better than what? before they had the summer program?

were you able to glean any info on how they were going to do their hiring if not thru a summer program? i would imagine that is more a sign of the economic times, because if a firm is looking to grow or keep their size (presumably during better economic times), would they really be able to recruit enough people just by recommendations or word of mouth?

Anonymous User
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 20, 2009 5:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:better than what? before they had the summer program?

were you able to glean any info on how they were going to do their hiring if not thru a summer program? i would imagine that is more a sign of the economic times, because if a firm is looking to grow or keep their size (presumably during better economic times), would they really be able to recruit enough people just by recommendations or word of mouth?



Better as in, most people say the summer program helps you find personalities that fit. He was saying that essentially, two interviews gave him just as much information as a summer program. Given the historically high summer-offer rates, I'd say it is the case for nearly every firm as well.

From what he was telling me, their hiring consisted of taking maybe the top one or two people from the local law schools. Ironically, he said that being at a T25 is a huge disadvantage during the recession, because local law schools are still going to have essentially the same prospects due to their strong connections to a few local firms.

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Matthies
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Re: Salaries outside of biglaw?

Postby Matthies » Tue Oct 20, 2009 5:51 pm

[quote="Anonymous User"

Career services has told me I've done more networking than "anyone they've ever met" and that I would undoubtedly come up with "something." Also, meeting with alumni at firms that did OCI here, they were shocked I wasn't hired with my strong GPA and my out-going personality. I haven't. I've decided to completely give up on firms, and just go the government/public interest route. If I'm going to be forced to take a vow of poverty, I'd at least like to do something interesting while I'm at it.

But I definitely think that this is more than the economy and might be a fundamental change in how firms do their hiring. I met with one partner of one of the largest tertiary-market firms for his particular city, and he said that not only did they get rid of their summer program for this year, but that he personally would like to see it gone forever since it hasn't "affected retention rates whatsoever," or netted them "better quality lawyers."[/quote]

This is what I have heard as well, on both accounts. My friends in big firms say they are likely to move to hiring 3Ls on a PT basis third year and try them out that way (at clerk rates rather than SA rates). This is already what mid sized firms do here. Likewise because of that, and the local biases, local hiring from local schools will stay the same while out of state hiring will drop because there are not as many traditional SA programs. Its just does not make sense to hire on 10 SAs when you have to defer them for 6-12 months just to make room, Try before you buy 3L clerking seems to be the model firms here are moving towards.

i agree its not just the economy, but we are seeing firms do a fundemtal change in how they do business, clients are no longer willing to pay top dollar for top talent when they don’t really see any difference in the quality of work. Firms are adapting to that, and even if the economy bounces back, clients are not going to go back to paying the firm to train new lawyers on their dimes.

Are you wanting to stay local or are you trying to network out of state? I have had really good luck being active in the local bar association and if you have an Inn of the court in your town those are great. Several biglaw partners are members of my In n and a got a clerk job through one of them. Brought in directly by the partner, no hiring committee or anything like that.

Good luck in your search, hope things work out or you!




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