Gap Year Between Clerkships?

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Gap Year Between Clerkships?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:39 am

I had a clerkship opportunity that I didn't want to turn down (not SCOTUS, but awesome court and judge) that has left me with a gap of employment between a one-year fellowship and the clerkship. I know I could likely find a clerkship for that gap year, but I am wondering if anyone has had success landing firm work with an impending clerkship? I'd love to pay down debt and get my long-term career started during the gap year, but I just don't know how to approach it with recruiters. I'm especially worried about timing -- if I want to do a clerkship, I should really start hustling for those between now and August. Since I want to do a firm, I'd rather explore those options now, but I don't know what recruiters would do with me.

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Re: Gap Year Between Clerkships?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:15 pm

Don't tell firms about the clerkship. start at the firm and with 3 months to go, give the partner(s) you're working for notice. that is more than adequate time to transition you out.

Law firms don't deserve better treatment than the above.

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Re: Gap Year Between Clerkships?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Mar 03, 2013 1:20 am

Similar situation. I did a fed coa clerkship, went back to firm, and now have an opportunity to do a prestigious d ct clerkship. Should I do it? Will this end well? I dont think the firm will be okay with it, and probably wont take me back

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Re: Gap Year Between Clerkships?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Don't tell firms about the clerkship. start at the firm and with 3 months to go, give the partner(s) you're working for notice. that is more than adequate time to transition you out.

Law firms don't deserve better treatment than the above.


This is bad advice. The legal world is too small to risk someone at your firm finding out that you were less than honest with them in the hiring process. If you have already told people about your clerkship (or if it is publicly available information in any sense) it is certainly plausible that that information could one day make it to someone at your firm. And even if you haven't told a soul yourself, there are people who are aware of your future plans (the judge; his/her clerks).

And even if the firm never finds out that you hid your plans, they might not be thrilled that you're leaving after a year to clerk (which would require applying, at the latest, pretty soon after you started).

There are likely firms that will be happy to take you on for a year. If your clerkship is that awesome, they will view it as a signifier. You'll want to target firms with big classes who rely on attrition. In your interviews, you should be candid about your upcoming clerkship, but stress that you are planning on returning to whatever firm you work for after you clerk. If that doesn't end up happening, that's ok; no one will hold against you a change of plans.




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