Clerks Taking Questions

Seek and share information about clerkship applications, clerkship hiring timelines, and post-clerkship employment opportunities.
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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:48 am

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks everyone! I found nothing via the usual methods. I guess I’ll just try to be prepared for anything. TBH, I’m a borderline candidate anyway (was shocked to get an interview) and probably will just consider this as “practice” for state court interviews (none of which I currently have, but would be more in line with my expectations).

Ask friends at other law schools? Ask your career services to put you in contact with someone? Or ask TLS?

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Moonraker » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Moonraker wrote:
FascinatedWanderer wrote:Does anyone know when we can start expecting solicitation letters/invites to clerk receptions and such? Not looking for a job, but would enjoy nabbing some free food and drink on someone else's dime.


Hi, these are definitely helpful, but not the only way to seek employment. I began mailing my materials in November and ultimately selected to begin work at a firm that did not mail anything to our chambers. If there is a firm you're particularly interested in, you should start sooner rather than later.


How soon?


I was mailing them in November, unlikely to be important before.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:29 pm

I went to tier 2 school (90-100 range), graduated top 13% (honors), Law Review, and I'm currently working in big law. I know that my school cuts against my chances, but considering that I'll have a couple of years of big law experience under my belt, and that I graduated with honors and was on LR, what do you think my chances of landing a federal clerkship on the district level anywhere in the country? Thanks.

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anon sequitur

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby anon sequitur » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:59 pm

If you really are willing to apply all over the country, your chances of eventually getting something are really high.

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mjb447

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby mjb447 » Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:28 pm

Good enough to apply. You'll want a current resume, writing sample, etc. for other reasons anyway.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Lincoln » Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:53 am

Anonymous User wrote:I went to tier 2 school (90-100 range), graduated top 13% (honors), Law Review, and I'm currently working in big law. I know that my school cuts against my chances, but considering that I'll have a couple of years of big law experience under my belt, and that I graduated with honors and was on LR, what do you think my chances of landing a federal clerkship on the district level anywhere in the country? Thanks.


You can apply broadly, sure, but depending on what T2 you went to, your best bet may be in your home region or with judges who have are alums or have hired interns/clerks from your school before.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Sweatshorts » Wed Dec 13, 2017 10:48 am

Lincoln wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I went to tier 2 school (90-100 range), graduated top 13% (honors), Law Review, and I'm currently working in big law. I know that my school cuts against my chances, but considering that I'll have a couple of years of big law experience under my belt, and that I graduated with honors and was on LR, what do you think my chances of landing a federal clerkship on the district level anywhere in the country? Thanks.


You can apply broadly, sure, but depending on what T2 you went to, your best bet may be in your home region or with judges who have are alums or have hired interns/clerks from your school before.

This is what someone else told me as well. Thanks for the insight!

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:29 pm

We're not supposed to get our judge something for Christmas, right? Please tell me the answer is no.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:24 pm

So, the federal policy on gifts says:

A judicial officer or employee shall not solicit a contribution from another officer or employee for a gift to an official superior, make a donation as a gift or give a gift to an official superior, or accept a gift from an officer or employee receiving less pay than himself or herself. This paragraph does not prohibit a judicial officer or employee from collecting voluntary contributions for a gift, or making a voluntary gift, to an official
superior for a special occasion such as marriage, anniversary, birthday, retirement, illness, or under other circumstances in which gifts are traditionally given or exchanged.


While I suppose technically you could lump Christmas in as "other circumstances in which gifts are traditionally given or exchanged," I think most judges aren't going to expect anything from their clerks for Christmas; I honestly can't remember what I did, but I'm pretty sure that means I didn't give my judge anything. But you can always ask the JA or a longer-term clerk if there's one around.

(I did go in with my co-clerk on a gift for the state judge I clerked for, in part b/c she was a career clerk who'd worked for him for 10 years and was close to him. She picked it out, though, and he was very generous with us, so nothing to complain about.)

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mjb447

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby mjb447 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:49 pm

I don't think most judges would expect it. If your chambers is different, a long term employee might be able to clue you in (one of mine did a group gift with small contributions from everyone).

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:53 pm

I'm a permanent clerk. In my judge's chambers, we usually exchange holiday goodies. It's not really an expectation, but I had one co-clerk who didn't bring anything and then felt awkward getting treats from everyone else (including the judge) without having anything to share. I agree with the advice to ask the JA or longer-term clerk what the usual practice is.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby ggocat » Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:43 pm

Definitely ask around. At my state court, it seems pretty much expected.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby BVest » Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:15 am

At my court it varied widely by chambers. I suspect my judge was the impetus behind the JA telling us sua sponte that he didn't want to receive gifts from staff/clerks.
Last edited by BVest on Sat Jan 27, 2018 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby FSK » Thu Dec 14, 2017 10:15 am

My holiday gift was a day or two off (using accrued leave of course).
Last edited by FSK on Sat Jan 27, 2018 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Leo » Thu Dec 14, 2017 10:50 am

Will a recommendation letter from a clinical professor carry less weight than one from a regular professor?

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Dec 14, 2017 10:59 am

Leo wrote:Will a recommendation letter from a clinical professor carry less weight than one from a regular professor?

Generally speaking, no - in fact, a clinic prof may be more likely to write a helpful, detailed, specific letter because they probably worked more closely with you and call tell the judge the kinds of things they really want to know about working with you.

I can’t say that there isn’t a single judge out there who has some bias against clinical profs, of course, but on the whole it shouldn’t make a whit of difference.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Leo » Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:03 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Leo wrote:Will a recommendation letter from a clinical professor carry less weight than one from a regular professor?

Generally speaking, no - in fact, a clinic prof may be more likely to write a helpful, detailed, specific letter because they probably worked more closely with you and call tell the judge the kinds of things they really want to know about working with you.

I can’t say that there isn’t a single judge out there who has some bias against clinical profs, of course, but on the whole it shouldn’t make a whit of difference.

Thanks!

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby butlerraider1 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:34 am

Hey everybody, I'm a first year associate at a NYC firm. When is the best time to apply if I'm looking for a 2019-2020 clerkship? Now?

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby lavarman84 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:41 am

butlerraider1 wrote:Hey everybody, I'm a first year associate at a NYC firm. When is the best time to apply if I'm looking for a 2019-2020 clerkship? Now?


Yes, I'd recommend applying ASAP.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby butlerraider1 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 1:12 am

lavarman84 wrote:
butlerraider1 wrote:Hey everybody, I'm a first year associate at a NYC firm. When is the best time to apply if I'm looking for a 2019-2020 clerkship? Now?


Yes, I'd recommend applying ASAP.


So in general you should apply in the Fall two years before you want to clerk?

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby lavarman84 » Sat Dec 16, 2017 1:19 am

butlerraider1 wrote:
lavarman84 wrote:
butlerraider1 wrote:Hey everybody, I'm a first year associate at a NYC firm. When is the best time to apply if I'm looking for a 2019-2020 clerkship? Now?


Yes, I'd recommend applying ASAP.


So in general you should apply in the Fall two years before you want to clerk?


It depends on the judge. But yes, at least two years.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 16, 2017 10:31 am

What do you do with a recommender who asks you to write the recommendation letter yourself? Should I find another recommender?

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby ernie » Sat Dec 16, 2017 10:46 am

butlerraider1 wrote:
lavarman84 wrote:
butlerraider1 wrote:Hey everybody, I'm a first year associate at a NYC firm. When is the best time to apply if I'm looking for a 2019-2020 clerkship? Now?


Yes, I'd recommend applying ASAP.


So in general you should apply in the Fall two years before you want to clerk?

Ideally you'd start earlier. In May 2017 one of my judges had already hired at least one clerk for 2019-2020 and the other had finished hiring.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sat Dec 16, 2017 10:58 am

Anonymous User wrote:What do you do with a recommender who asks you to write the recommendation letter yourself? Should I find another recommender?

There’s no reason you have to - this is totally fine, although admittedly sort of a pain. It usually means the recommender is really busy and/or wants to make sure to include all the details that will help you that they may not know. If you don’t think you can then by all means find another recommender, but there aren’t any issues with the practice.

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Re: Clerks Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:49 am

I'm about to start a D.Ct clerkship after clerking for 2.5 years in state court. After this clerkship I'd like to move to a city in a neighboring state. Would it make sense to apply for a clerkships located in that city? I'm worried any benefits from getting a local clerkship would be outweighed by having too many years of clerking on my resume at that point.




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