Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

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Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:28 pm

So I'm top 15% at DCNG with likely e-board for my secondary journal and at least two pretty solid professor recommendations. I'm working at a V10 in NY this summer.

I've heard rumors that off-plan hiring is not only for COA but also the more competitive district court judges. My career office is hilariously opaque about this, and I am wondering: am I really in contention for top-flight district courts that would merit figuring out how to do off-plan even though my career office is unhelpful? (I know and am okay with COA being out of the question.)

Also, at what point does firm prestige come into play? Like, V10 probably isn't particularly impressive. But does WLRK/CSM add bonus points?

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 19, 2013 10:41 pm

FWIW, most N.D. Cal. judges are off-plan.

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ph14
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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby ph14 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 10:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So I'm top 15% at DCNG with likely e-board for my secondary journal and at least two pretty solid professor recommendations. I'm working at a V10 in NY this summer.

I've heard rumors that off-plan hiring is not only for COA but also the more competitive district court judges. My career office is hilariously opaque about this, and I am wondering: am I really in contention for top-flight district courts that would merit figuring out how to do off-plan even though my career office is unhelpful? (I know and am okay with COA being out of the question.)

Also, at what point does firm prestige come into play? Like, V10 probably isn't particularly impressive. But does WLRK/CSM add bonus points?


Probably not, but the fact that one has the grades for such good firms (and I would probably group it more as WLRK, CSM/S&C) certainly is helpful in applying for competitive d. ct. judges.

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:09 am

Like, V10 probably isn't particularly impressive. But does WLRK/CSM add bonus points?


Based on my judge: Cravath, no. It would be generic "big prestigious firm." No different than S&C (in NYC), or Kirkland/Sidley (in Chicago), or Latham/GDC/OMM (in LA). Good to have on your resume, but not better than the others.

Wachtel, yes. This is just a guess, but my judge would be curious why you'd be willing to walk away from $250k or so to clerk. (OK, $200k after clerkship bonus.)

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:11 am

Do we think Wachtell is the only one that could give a slight boost? What about Boies or W&C?

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:40 am

What about Boies or W&C?


Again, I'm projecting here. But I'd guess that my judge wouldn't be blown away by Boies Schiller*, if only because the firm really only came to prominence after s/he took the bench, and they haven't appeared before him/her. W&C is a bit different, because it was so prominent during the Clinton impeachment proceedings. (Yes, I get the irony.) I'd probably guess that the boost would be dependent on whether your judge was a D or R, but that's just a guess.

* I should note that I'd be blown away by Boies Schiller, and would try to convey that sense of awe to my judge. PLEASE GIVE ME A JOB.

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:22 am

My sense is that a lot of C.D. Cal. judges are also off plan, although this may just be a function of the fact that they hire a disproportionately large number of alumni. FWIW, my experience with clerkship interviews suggest that most judges don't care a ton about what firm you're at as long as it's a respectable firm (biglaw or respectable boutique/midlaw), but anecdotally, the people who got the best clerkships at my school worked in DC (W&C, Kellogg Huber, Jenner DC, Sidley DC, Gibson DC, Jones Day DC all did very well), at Cravath (not Wachtell, interestingly), at MTO, or at elite plaintiffs' firms (e.g. Altshuler Berzon).

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby ClerkAdvisor » Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:39 pm

My 2 cents with regard to firms. As long as you have summered at either a respectable firm or a respectable PI/public service employer, my judges would not care. There may be certain firms that my judges have a particular affinity for, but that's based on their personal experiences and not on vault rankings. Plus, at least in the mid-Atlantic, the vast majority of applicants will have/be summering at a V10, W&C, Boies, Quinn, etc. type places.

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:12 pm

OP here. Am I at all competitive to C.D. Cal. and N.D. Cal. clerkships? I am from California and went to UG in SoCal if that helps.

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby theaccidentalclerk » Sun Jan 20, 2013 5:37 pm

Am I at all competitive to C.D. Cal. and N.D. Cal. clerkships? I am from California and went to UG in SoCal if that helps.


My guess is that outside the top 10% at DCNG would not be competitive as a student for CD Cal and ND Cal, unless you have a technical degree and can pitch yourself as an IP person (in which case you might have wheels in ND Cal). Probably not SD Cal either, but you might have some success in ED Cal. But I don't have firsthand knowledge about any of those districts, so take that for what it's worth.

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Re: Off-plan D. Ct. judges? Worth pursuing?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:05 pm

With the exception of a few judges (Alsup, Seeborg, Davila, Koh), N.D.Cal. judges prefer a few years of experience and basically won't consider law students. And Koh and Alsup are hired through 2015.




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