Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Seek and share information about clerkship applications, clerkship hiring timelines, and post-clerkship employment opportunities.
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are sharing sensitive information about clerkship applications and clerkship hiring. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned."
Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Is it possible to do a SA at a firm I've never worked at between two clerkships?

For example, say I didn't want to return to my 2L summer firm and had two clerkships like up for after graduation. Could I do Clerkship 1 from June to June and then SA from June to August and then Clerkship 2 from August to August?

Has anyone done this before?

Really, you just need to talk to the judges to find out their schedules. The judges I've worked for had very clear preferences about when I started and going from June to June would not have worked for them. But I'm sure that's not universal - you just need to find out what your judges want.

(Edited to add: assuming a firm is willing to hire a law school grad as an SA. I don't see why they wouldn't, but you'd have to find that out, too. I know some government employers *can't* hire law school grads for student positions, but that's probably very different in the private sector.)

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Is it possible to do a SA at a firm I've never worked at between two clerkships?

For example, say I didn't want to return to my 2L summer firm and had two clerkships like up for after graduation. Could I do Clerkship 1 from June to June and then SA from June to August and then Clerkship 2 from August to August?

Has anyone done this before?

Really, you just need to talk to the judges to find out their schedules. The judges I've worked for had very clear preferences about when I started and going from June to June would not have worked for them. But I'm sure that's not universal - you just need to find out what your judges want.

(Edited to add: assuming a firm is willing to hire a law school grad as an SA. I don't see why they wouldn't, but you'd have to find that out, too. I know some government employers *can't* hire law school grads for student positions, but that's probably very different in the private sector.)

It's definitely not a universal thing. My judge is well-known for being flexible about clerkship start/end dates to make it easier for outgoing clerks to get jobs.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 23, 2012 3:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Is it possible to do a SA at a firm I've never worked at between two clerkships?

For example, say I didn't want to return to my 2L summer firm and had two clerkships like up for after graduation. Could I do Clerkship 1 from June to June and then SA from June to August and then Clerkship 2 from August to August?

Has anyone done this before?

Really, you just need to talk to the judges to find out their schedules. The judges I've worked for had very clear preferences about when I started and going from June to June would not have worked for them. But I'm sure that's not universal - you just need to find out what your judges want.

(Edited to add: assuming a firm is willing to hire a law school grad as an SA. I don't see why they wouldn't, but you'd have to find that out, too. I know some government employers *can't* hire law school grads for student positions, but that's probably very different in the private sector.)

It's definitely not a universal thing. My judge is well-known for being flexible about clerkship start/end dates to make it easier for outgoing clerks to get jobs.

Yeah, part of it is that my first judge almost always hires people right out of law school, and so if you left in June, getting someone to replace you in June would be hard because folks are taking the bar and don't usually want to start that early (or on the flip side, someone who started in Aug/Sept, which is normal here, may not want to leave in June to create an opening for you). Plus he doesn't have a lot of clerks, so he wouldn't want to go without one for a month or two. Beyond that, it's just a question of arranging with your predecessor/successor. I'm sure it just depends on the particular situation.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:34 pm

Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:39 pm

Got a phone interview lined up. Any advice for preparing for it?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.

What exactly are you wondering about? I'm in a second clerkship, but I went from state to federal, so not quite the same situation as you. Still, FWIW, it's a lot better the second time around, when you're not worried about the plan (assuming you were hired on the plan for your upcoming clerkship). There's a lot of debate about when to send out the applications, but most people seem to think March-April-May (unless you know that the judge hires really early, which some of the really selective judges do). I sent out applications sometime in May (after graduation), but my district is not especially competitive (I love my district, but it's not one of the preftigious ones).

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.

What exactly are you wondering about? I'm in a second clerkship, but I went from state to federal, so not quite the same situation as you. Still, FWIW, it's a lot better the second time around, when you're not worried about the plan (assuming you were hired on the plan for your upcoming clerkship). There's a lot of debate about when to send out the applications, but most people seem to think March-April-May (unless you know that the judge hires really early, which some of the really selective judges do). I sent out applications sometime in May (after graduation), but my district is not especially competitive (I love my district, but it's not one of the preftigious ones).



I was wondering about the timing of applications, so you're spot on with your response. Not exactly sure how early the judges I have in mind will start hiring, but I suppose it won't hurt to be prepared for early apps. Thanks!

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 25, 2012 1:06 pm

If you have a list of firms you want to apply to (and it is not indicated on the website), send an email to the recruiting coordinators and ask them when you should send your application.

"I am a 2012 law school grad clerking for a judge. The clerkship ends in August 2013. When should I send my application in for an associate position at your firm?"

If you are super worried, you can even send this email via a dummy email account.

As for me, I received responses from all the recruiters I sent emails to. Some told me to apply in January, a couple told me I can apply now, but the vast majority told me to apply in early spring. Just my 2 cents.

lolwat
Posts: 604
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:30 pm

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby lolwat » Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:36 am

Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.


Apply in March-July. I don't think it helps to apply earlier than that, but you don't really want to apply later than mid-summer either.

Got a phone interview lined up. Any advice for preparing for it?


According to the limited information I have on this, phone interviews will more or less be the same, callbacks will probably be longer (at least at some firms) since you're essentially coming in as a lateral so they don't get the 8-week (or whatever) test period to make sure you don't suck.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:59 am

lolwat wrote:
Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.


Apply in March-July. I don't think it helps to apply earlier than that, but you don't really want to apply later than mid-summer either.

Got a phone interview lined up. Any advice for preparing for it?


According to the limited information I have on this, phone interviews will more or less be the same, callbacks will probably be longer (at least at some firms) since you're essentially coming in as a lateral so they don't get the 8-week (or whatever) test period to make sure you don't suck.


Meant for a clerkship.

User avatar
20160810
Posts: 19648
Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 1:18 pm

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby 20160810 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 12:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
lolwat wrote:
Any clerks here who've done clerkships back-to-back with advice on how this works? I'm currently a 3L with a clerkship lined up for next year, but I'm interested in clerking again in a more competitive district after that.


Apply in March-July. I don't think it helps to apply earlier than that, but you don't really want to apply later than mid-summer either.

Got a phone interview lined up. Any advice for preparing for it?


According to the limited information I have on this, phone interviews will more or less be the same, callbacks will probably be longer (at least at some firms) since you're essentially coming in as a lateral so they don't get the 8-week (or whatever) test period to make sure you don't suck.


Meant for a clerkship.

Just breathe really heavily into the phone and then when the interview is almost over say "Don't go yet, I'm almost finished."

funghinog
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:30 pm

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby funghinog » Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:42 pm

Anybody personalizing their cover letters/emails? I've heard career services folks suggest that it should be specifically tailored to each firm and include the standard cover letter stuff (talking about past experience, ties to the city, etc.). But I was under the impression it just needed to be super-short and basically just say that we're clerking, interested in an associate position, and preferred practice group.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 06, 2013 7:10 am

When applying for post-clerkship jobs for I somewhat mixed up the length and targeting of cover letters. Some I personalized and made a bit longer, but some were literally 5 sentences. I think it may make a difference in some situations where the firm does not usually target your district.

For instance, one V5 I did not even include a cover letter, just sent resume and got a callback. For others in callbacks they mentioned my interest in their firm/region based on what I included in the letter. Others I know from law school who clerked in the middle of the country who were applying to firms in those regions seemed to make more of an effort to include targeted information simply because there were fewer firms.

Another way of approaching firms that I used that actually worked in two situations for getting a callback was to have a friend who worked at the firm contact the recruitment coordinator and say "my friend X clerk is looking for a job, what should they do."

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:59 am

Here's a question for you guys. I'll be starting a clerkship with a district judge in a large east coast city this summer. I will have been out of law school for approx. 5 years when I begin, and have been a state public defender the whole time. I worked at a big firm 2L summer, and got an offer, but don't really want to go back to there. My grades were about top 25% at a T6. I've got a kid on the way, and am thinking very seriously about going to the private sector post-clerkship. Do you think I'll have any chance making the transition to a big firm after clerking, or is it going to kill me that I'll be a 6th year with a lot of criminal trial experience, but nothing in a law firm other than a summer back in '07 or so? How about more midsize firms?

hiima3L
Posts: 835
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:26 pm

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby hiima3L » Mon Jan 07, 2013 7:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Here's a question for you guys. I'll be starting a clerkship with a district judge in a large east coast city this summer. I will have been out of law school for approx. 5 years when I begin, and have been a state public defender the whole time. I worked at a big firm 2L summer, and got an offer, but don't really want to go back to there. My grades were about top 25% at a T6. I've got a kid on the way, and am thinking very seriously about going to the private sector post-clerkship. Do you think I'll have any chance making the transition to a big firm after clerking, or is it going to kill me that I'll be a 6th year with a lot of criminal trial experience, but nothing in a law firm other than a summer back in '07 or so? How about more midsize firms?


Every thing I've ever heard is, more or less, AIII clerkship = firm offers.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 07, 2013 10:41 pm

hiima3L wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Here's a question for you guys. I'll be starting a clerkship with a district judge in a large east coast city this summer. I will have been out of law school for approx. 5 years when I begin, and have been a state public defender the whole time. I worked at a big firm 2L summer, and got an offer, but don't really want to go back to there. My grades were about top 25% at a T6. I've got a kid on the way, and am thinking very seriously about going to the private sector post-clerkship. Do you think I'll have any chance making the transition to a big firm after clerking, or is it going to kill me that I'll be a 6th year with a lot of criminal trial experience, but nothing in a law firm other than a summer back in '07 or so? How about more midsize firms?


Every thing I've ever heard is, more or less, AIII clerkship = firm offers.

Different Anon here. Is that true no matter what your district's docket is like? I'm in a district that includes a city with many big firms, but my particular branch/judge's docket is almost exclusively criminal. I certainly wouldn't mind parlaying the clerkship into a DA/AUSA(I know, "lol good luck") gig, but I'd like the option of a firm if possible. Would I have to explain away the fact that I worked on almost all criminal stuff?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:53 am

Any advice/anecdotes/success stories of turning a specialty court (one of limited jurisdiction) clerkship into an offer from a firm that doesn't practice much before the court, or in that area generally? I've always heard that, in terms of experience (of course not preftige), a clerkship is a clerkship is a clerkship. Thoughts?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 09, 2013 11:57 am

Anonymous User wrote:Any advice/anecdotes/success stories of turning a specialty court (one of limited jurisdiction) clerkship into an offer from a firm that doesn't practice much before the court, or in that area generally? I've always heard that, in terms of experience (of course not preftige), a clerkship is a clerkship is a clerkship. Thoughts?


Based on my experience so far, no. I work for a fed mag judge in "flyover" country and none of the firms in the surrounding area seemed remotely interested in hiring me. It's AIII clerkship or better, at least in my experience.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:02 pm

Anyone who's sent out resumes this month get any responses yet?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Anyone who's sent out resumes this month get any responses yet?

Not yet. Just getting going with the job hunt now really .

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:52 pm

I did, but it was more of an experiment than a serious application.

I sent my resume in to a midsized firm in my home (secondary) market who had posted an ad in the local bar journal looking for someone like me. They called back to arrange an interview within a couple of hours. I reiterated on the phone with the HR person that I wouldn't be able to start until late summer after the clerkship (I had put that in my cover email but wasn't sure if the message made it on). The hiring partner emailed back and said on second thought, given my timing, call him back in the late spring when it gets closer to my departure date.

Also, for the clerks with a bit more experience -- any thought about maybe applying for lower-level judge positions (like magistrate or county/municipal judges in the states that select this way)? I'm wondering if anyone has heard of anyone with success doing that.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Also, for the clerks with a bit more experience -- any thought about maybe applying for lower-level judge positions (like magistrate or county/municipal judges in the states that select this way)? I'm wondering if anyone has heard of anyone with success doing that.

I am not a particularly experienced clerk, and it's anecdotal, but FWIW: I have a classmate who did this (he didn't clerk; we graduated in May, and he was appointed in October). He had moved with his wife/family to a very rural, underpopulated county (county seat = < 3000 people) to work in a small firm run by the county attorney (I don't think he was from the area, but he was from the state, which makes a big difference here). The county judge retired in October and my classmate got the job. However, rural county courtships in my state are 20% positions that pay $25K/yr, and any position in a city is going to be fairly competitive. The consensus in my state is that almost everyone has to go through multiple applications before getting an appointment, and I'm not aware of anyone getting appointed post-clerkship - everyone I've seen appointed has been a practicing lawyer (one exception - someone who was a career clerk to a federal judge for 20+ years got appointed to the state COA. But he's always used as the exception that proves the rule) (oh, and I think in an even smaller, more rural county, someone got appointed county judge who didn't even have a JD).

tl;dr: I think it might be possible to do this, but most of the places you could, you wouldn't want to be (unless you really love very very small very very rural towns - which is cool, if you do. Most here don't). Depending on how much experience your "bit more experience" is, I suppose.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:27 pm

I can't catch a fucking break! During my 3L year in 2008, I was all about transactional work, clerked at a real estate law firm, but then got no-offered when the market tanked. Then I went to a personal injury firm because it was the only job I could find. Hated the firm, but liked civil litigation. I took the advice of a recruiter and obtained a clerkship (federal magistrate). Now my clerkship is about to end, but the litigation market is down. The transactional firms aren't interested in my resume, and the litigation shops are not hiring. What the hell else can I do?

User avatar
Wholigan
Posts: 763
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2011 4:51 pm

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Wholigan » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I can't catch a fucking break! During my 3L year in 2008, I was all about transactional work, clerked at a real estate law firm, but then got no-offered when the market tanked. Then I went to a personal injury firm because it was the only job I could find. Hated the firm, but liked civil litigation. I took the advice of a recruiter and obtained a clerkship (federal magistrate). Now my clerkship is about to end, but the litigation market is down. The transactional firms aren't interested in my resume, and the litigation shops are not hiring. What the hell else can I do?


When does your clerkship end? Don't they usually end in the summer? It seems like clerk hiring tends to gear up in the spring.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273047
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Clerk job hunting thread 2012/2013

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:52 pm

Wholigan wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I can't catch a fucking break! During my 3L year in 2008, I was all about transactional work, clerked at a real estate law firm, but then got no-offered when the market tanked. Then I went to a personal injury firm because it was the only job I could find. Hated the firm, but liked civil litigation. I took the advice of a recruiter and obtained a clerkship (federal magistrate). Now my clerkship is about to end, but the litigation market is down. The transactional firms aren't interested in my resume, and the litigation shops are not hiring. What the hell else can I do?


When does your clerkship end? Don't they usually end in the summer? It seems like clerk hiring tends to gear up in the spring.


Clerkship ends in August. Since I graduated in 2008, I have a lot of friends working in firms (including some that are on the hiring committees of their firm). They've been circulating my resume, but all I am hearing is that they don't have any litigation spots and don't foresee litigation picking up in the next year or so.




Return to “Judicial Clerkships”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.