Magistrate Judges

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Sam
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Magistrate Judges

Postby Sam » Tue Feb 14, 2012 8:37 pm

I know this topic has been posted before, but I have found the answers unsatisfactory, which is why I am posting again in hopes of more meaningful answers.

I'm a 1L at Hofstra and have been offered a judicial internship with a magistrate judge in the U.S. Dist. Ct. for the Eastern District of New York. I would like to know if there is a meaningful difference between how a judicial internship with a magistrate judge and one with a dist. ct. judge are viewed. Is there a prestige factor here, or a dist. ct. internship is a dist. ct. internship?

Again, please don't just say it depends or some generic response I already know. I am looking for real and meaningful answers. Thanks.
Last edited by Sam on Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

03121202698008
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby 03121202698008 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 8:45 pm

Some is prestige. Some is you don't get as good of writing experience due to the difference in workload. You also witness vastly different things which means you may not have as interesting of stuff to talk about during OCI.

Sam
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby Sam » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:26 pm

blowhard wrote:Some is prestige. Some is you don't get as good of writing experience due to the difference in workload. You also witness vastly different things which means you may not have as interesting of stuff to talk about during OCI.


Thanks! I appreciate it. I look forward to hearing more of everyone's thoughts.

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Unitas
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby Unitas » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:38 pm

It really all depends on the judge you are working for what you get out of it. Magistrates get some interesting and some really mundane stuff. You'll probably get something to talk about. They may also let you do additional things with the Judge which could be networking. Again this all depends on your judge and not on their "rank."

Also, you may want to edit your original post because you are certainly identifiable. It probably doesn't matter but still.

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kalvano
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby kalvano » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:54 pm

Sam wrote:I know this topic has been posted before, but I have found the answers unsatisfactory, which is why I am posting again in hopes of more meaningful answers.

I'm a 1L at Hofstra and have been offered a judicial internship with a magistrate judge in the U.S. Dist. Ct. for the Eastern District of New York. I would like to know if there is a meaningful difference between how a judicial internship with a magistrate judge and one with a dist. ct. judge are viewed. Is there a prestige factor here, or a dist. ct. internship is a dist. ct. internship?

Again, please don't just say it depends or some generic response I already know. I am looking for real and meaningful answers. Thanks.



If you've already been offered the internship, does your school require you to accept it?

Sam
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby Sam » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:00 pm

kalvano wrote:
Sam wrote:I know this topic has been posted before, but I have found the answers unsatisfactory, which is why I am posting again in hopes of more meaningful answers.

I'm a 1L at Hofstra and have been offered a judicial internship with a magistrate judge in the U.S. Dist. Ct. for the Eastern District of New York. I would like to know if there is a meaningful difference between how a judicial internship with a magistrate judge and one with a dist. ct. judge are viewed. Is there a prestige factor here, or a dist. ct. internship is a dist. ct. internship?

Again, please don't just say it depends or some generic response I already know. I am looking for real and meaningful answers. Thanks.


If you've already been offered the internship, does your school require you to accept it?


I don't believe they require it. But I don't have any better offers. I'm inquiring because I want to know if it's good enough or the difference between district ct. and magistrate ct. judges in terms of prestige and image is large enough that I should maybe keep searching not to reject this internship since I have accepted it, but to try to do two internships, which I have heard some people have done.

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kalvano
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby kalvano » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:09 pm

You're looking for a 1L internship, right? At that level, no, there is no real difference in prestige.

I certainly wouldn't turn it down and just hope for a better job.

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quiver
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby quiver » Tue Feb 14, 2012 11:34 pm

kalvano wrote:You're looking for a 1L internship, right? At that level, no, there is no real difference in prestige.

I certainly wouldn't turn it down and just hope for a better job.
Yeah I agree with this. It's 1L summer, all you need to do is something legal.

blowhard wrote:Some is prestige. Some is you don't get as good of writing experience due to the difference in workload. You also witness vastly different things which means you may not have as interesting of stuff to talk about during OCI.
I disagree with this. There is really no prestige difference for a 1L summer internship.

It may vary widely from judge to judge and district to district but I interned with a magistrate judge for my 1L summer and I got great writing experience; every one of my OCI interviewers commented on this. I don't see how the caseload has any affect on the writing experience, it would more depend on how the judge treats interns than what her/his caseload is. The judge's docket will not be as interesting in the sense that magistrates don't really handle criminal cases but we had plenty of civil cases that were pretty cool. And with respect to witnessing court proceedings, sure magistrates may only handle civil stuff, but there will be lots of other proceedings going on in the courthouse. My judge encouraged us to take breaks by checking out whatever was happening in the courthouse that day and I pretty much saw everything imaginable (criminal and civil); I had plenty to talk about during OCI.

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traehekat
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby traehekat » Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:46 am

I echo pretty much everything that has already been said.

1. It's a 1L summer internship, so one really isn't more prestigious than the other. Even interning with a circuit court judge isn't all that prestigious as a 1L. Don't let this be a motivating factor.

2. I also interned with a magistrate judge during 1L and found it to be a great experience. I actually observed a lot of preliminary criminal proceedings that got pretty interesting, but all my projects I worked on over the summer were civil, so I felt I got a balanced exposure in that regard. The projects were excellent, but I may have been lucky in that I was able to work on a number of summary judgment motions which are obviously dispositive of the case, and thus a little more interesting and substantive. I definitely feel I gained excellent research and writing experience from it and had plenty to talk about during OCI. I was also encouraged to observe proceedings happening with some of the other Art. III judges that were in the same courthouse, so I had some actual trial exposure.

3. Even if your school doesn't require it, my advice is to always accept a judge's offer pretty much on the spot unless they have given you specific permission to take your time and feel free to consider other offers that may be more convenient (typically this might have something to do with convenience of location and commuting). I knew I might have offers coming in from Art. III judges (and in fact I did), but I guess partly out of respect and partly based on what I had been told on here I felt that I should just accept on the spot. Haven't regretted it for a second.

Sam
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Re: Magistrate Judges

Postby Sam » Wed Feb 15, 2012 7:11 pm

Thank you guys for your very thoughtful responses. This has been really helpful. So I'm glad that I accepted my offer on the spot. It seems like I shouldn't think too much about the prestige factor and focus on the experience, which is definitely a great relief, because I can definitely use a break from writing any more cover letters!




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