Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

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Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 02, 2013 9:58 pm

I'm a current appellate clerk looking into a follow-up two year district court clerkship, but I'm curious as to whether having clerked for three years would lead to complications when I return either to my 2L summer firm or another firm in my market (NY/SF/DC/LA). In terms of class credit, I assume I'd be coming in as a fourth year? I can't imagine starting at that level without having had any firm experience; anyone know whether clerking for three years is consequently a bad idea?

nonprofit-prophet
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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Thu May 02, 2013 10:09 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a current appellate clerk looking into a follow-up two year district court clerkship, but I'm curious as to whether having clerked for three years would lead to complications when I return either to my 2L summer firm or another firm in my market (NY/SF/DC/LA). In terms of class credit, I assume I'd be coming in as a fourth year? I can't imagine starting at that level without having had any firm experience; anyone know whether clerking for three years is consequently a bad idea?


I could be wrong, but I thought they only give one class year credit, regardless of how many years you clerk.

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 02, 2013 10:17 pm

That would be a much better situation. I had been told that if you clerk for two years you come in as a third year, but that could be completely wrong. Regardless, do you think having clerked for three years would start to look like overkill on your resume?

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ManOfTheMinute
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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby ManOfTheMinute » Thu May 02, 2013 10:17 pm

nonprofit-prophet wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm a current appellate clerk looking into a follow-up two year district court clerkship, but I'm curious as to whether having clerked for three years would lead to complications when I return either to my 2L summer firm or another firm in my market (NY/SF/DC/LA). In terms of class credit, I assume I'd be coming in as a fourth year? I can't imagine starting at that level without having had any firm experience; anyone know whether clerking for three years is consequently a bad idea?


I could be wrong, but I thought they only give one class year credit, regardless of how many years you clerk.


that is what I have heard - unless its SCOTUS, in which case you get two+ years

jd20132013
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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby jd20132013 » Thu May 02, 2013 11:35 pm

I was pretty sure you could get a max of two years credit...

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Citizen Genet » Thu May 02, 2013 11:43 pm

jd20132013 wrote:I was pretty sure you could get a max of two years credit...


Totally firm dependent. Some will credit any amount of years (very rare), some a max of two years (common), some a max of one year (common), and some hate clerkships (very rare).

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TaipeiMort
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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby TaipeiMort » Thu May 02, 2013 11:55 pm

Corporate or Litigation? Firm policy is what really matters, but it seems that lit groups are generally more tolerant than Corporate groups toward clerking in general.

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 03, 2013 12:17 am

Data point: at my firm, someone entering after three years of clerking comes in as a fourth year associate, at least for compensation purposes. For partnership, it's evaluated case-by-case.

I know one attorney who was made partner one year later than others in the same graduating class year, because he spent three years clerking. So in that respect, he "lost" a year. But he was paid as a fourth-year during his first year in private practice, which is pretty sweet.

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 03, 2013 7:18 am

Anonymous User wrote:Data point: at my firm, someone entering after three years of clerking comes in as a fourth year associate, at least for compensation purposes. For partnership, it's evaluated case-by-case.

I know one attorney who was made partner one year later than others in the same graduating class year, because he spent three years clerking. So in that respect, he "lost" a year. But he was paid as a fourth-year during his first year in private practice, which is pretty sweet.

Wouldn't that put you in a rough situation, i.e. you're making fourth year money and I would assume getting fourth year tasks with no prior firm training? Or is BigLaw work really so basic that you can skip three years of introduction and still manage it?

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 03, 2013 11:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Data point: at my firm, someone entering after three years of clerking comes in as a fourth year associate, at least for compensation purposes. For partnership, it's evaluated case-by-case.

I know one attorney who was made partner one year later than others in the same graduating class year, because he spent three years clerking. So in that respect, he "lost" a year. But he was paid as a fourth-year during his first year in private practice, which is pretty sweet.

Wouldn't that put you in a rough situation, i.e. you're making fourth year money and I would assume getting fourth year tasks with no prior firm training? Or is BigLaw work really so basic that you can skip three years of introduction and still manage it?


I imagine clerking for three years might be different, but for people who clerk for two years, most firms will give third-year standing for compensation purposes, and second-year standing for all other purposes. I can't imagine any firm would want you to come in as a fourth-year associate for "work" purposes without having spent a day in a big law firm, and I would imagine there are many that wouldn't want to treat you as a third-year for seniority purposes either. In your type of (pretty rare if not SCOTUS) situation, I would think most firms would be open to negotiating standing for both compensation and seniority purposes.

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 03, 2013 7:43 pm

I'll be clerking for two years after graduation and then entering an NYC biglaw firm. I know there is a bonus for two-years of clerking, and I had always assumed I would come in at a third-year associate's salary, but now this exchange has me wondering if the salary-credit is limited to one year. Is there a resource to find out specific firm's policies, or is the only/best way here to ask directly?

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Re: Entering BigLaw After 3 Years of Clerking

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 03, 2013 8:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'll be clerking for two years after graduation and then entering an NYC biglaw firm. I know there is a bonus for two-years of clerking, and I had always assumed I would come in at a third-year associate's salary, but now this exchange has me wondering if the salary-credit is limited to one year. Is there a resource to find out specific firm's policies, or is the only/best way here to ask directly?


Different firms have different policies on this and I believe the more common policy is a single year's credit for a two year clerkship, so definitely ask if your understanding is otherwise.




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