Compare hours and stress

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sprezzatura
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Compare hours and stress

Postby sprezzatura » Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:29 pm

I'm not going to be completely unrealistic; I know that most careers in law are going to be demanding. That said, what do you think about the relative difficulty in terms of hours and stress of some of these careers?
Biglaw associate (does it make a difference being in corporate or litigation?)
Gov't prosecution - ADA, DA, AUSA
Private defense - could vary according to what kind of crimes, but if that's the case, based on whatever kind of crime you're familiar with

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AlanShore
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby AlanShore » Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:43 pm

I'm an 0L but from what I've hard

litigation big law>any other big law>government jobs

what do you mean by private defense?

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AlanShore
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby AlanShore » Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:44 pm

if by private defense you mean criminal defense law firms (or something similar) then again, the hours and stress would vary depending on the size of the firm.

government jobs are often strictly 9-5. i dont think you can count on 9-5 for many other areas of law unless you start your own firm and control your own hours.

tengorazon
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby tengorazon » Sun Nov 22, 2009 6:53 pm

Stress is subjective. I work fairly long, demanding hours, but that doesn't stress me. OTOH, I have friends who work less and are incredibly stressed. Stress largely depends on your personality.

In terms of hours, though, all of the jobs listed above are probably about the same, depending on the market. To reduce hours, you probably have to look at other gov't jobs (e.g., DOJ FTCA probably isn't that demanding).

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AlanShore
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby AlanShore » Sun Nov 22, 2009 7:10 pm

tengo, what type of law do you practice?

sprezzatura
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby sprezzatura » Sun Nov 22, 2009 8:43 pm

I should have thrown private practice on that list too, although I mostly meant just criminal defense in private practice and stupidly assumed everyone would pick up on that.
So, to rephrase: considering the hours and the stress/demands of the job (hard cases with big workloads and short deadlines? or more spread-out, sometimes boring, but definitely less stressful work?), how do these stack up?
Biglaw litigation and corporate (if the two are that different)
Government - ADA, DA, AUSA
Defense in private practice
Oh, and if anyone has an idea of what a defense lawyer in private practice makes, I'm sure that it varies, but does anyone have an idea of what those varying numbers are?

Mr. Pablo
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby Mr. Pablo » Sun Nov 22, 2009 8:53 pm

sprezzatura wrote:I
Oh, and if anyone has an idea of what a defense lawyer in private practice makes, I'm sure that it varies, but does anyone have an idea of what those varying numbers are?


That description is so vague as to warrant this, equally silly, response:
Private practice defense lawyers make $0.00 dollars per year up to about $10,000,000 dollars per year. Does that help?

/ I try not to be a dick, but sometimes it makes sense.

tengorazon
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby tengorazon » Sun Nov 22, 2009 10:18 pm

AlanShore wrote:tengo, what type of law do you practice?


BIGLIT

Anonymous User
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Nov 22, 2009 11:33 pm

Mr. Pablo wrote:
sprezzatura wrote:I
Oh, and if anyone has an idea of what a defense lawyer in private practice makes, I'm sure that it varies, but does anyone have an idea of what those varying numbers are?


That description is so vague as to warrant this, equally silly, response:
Private practice defense lawyers make $0.00 dollars per year up to about $10,000,000 dollars per year. Does that help?

/ I try not to be a dick, but sometimes it makes sense.


There are two types of criminal defense in private practice: white-collar and everything else. White collar is mostly like any other biglaw practice. Everything else is largely covered by solos or very small firms, and the pay for a new lawyer in the field would be very low.

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JPJ
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby JPJ » Sun Nov 22, 2009 11:54 pm

I have a friend who works employment and executive benefits law for a top V firm. He had chosen that sector of law largely because the hours were a pretty steady 50 hours a week. However, he said the Mergers and Acquisition guys play golf for a few days and then work an 80 hour week. So, my impression was that even in big law, there's a lot variance in work load depending on what, exactly, you do.

Anonymous User
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 23, 2009 12:51 am

i dunno if the WORK you are given as a first yr associate will be stressful per se. it's gonna be tedious stuff. what makes it stressful are the hours/partners/economy/etc, im guessing

if the work stresses you, at least you are getting that magical "substantive" work

Anonymous User
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:38 pm

You can't make generalizations like this. It's based upon your personality and the individual firm. Some firms are sweatshops, some are not. Even within these firms, some of the partners at the non-sweatshops are very demanding. You may get paired up with a partner that is particularly demanding though or abusive.

I wouldn't base your practice choice upon generalizations because they could prove to be 100% inaccurate in your specific situation. Make a decision based upon the choices with which you are presented and upon what you think you will enjoy in terms of content and career options.

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Brawndo
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Re: Compare hours and stress

Postby Brawndo » Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:09 pm

AlanShore wrote:government jobs are often strictly 9-5. i dont think you can count on 9-5 for many other areas of law unless you start your own firm and control your own hours.


HA! Total bullshit. I did a summer program in Philly and we went to the DA's office- the prosecutors and public defenders there work 70-90 hours a week for 50k starting. If I'm gonna work insane hours I might as well get paid 6-figures

Now, some government agency jobs are 9-5, but that's also becoming a thing of the past.

Still, most government > Big Law any day




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