Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 10, 2014 1:09 pm

When should you reapply to firms? Is six months okay?

My issue is that I end in December, meaning I'd be able to start in early 2015. Problem is I sent out an email blast around February and received a lot of "sorry, we don't have any positions for the fall." I probably should have waited until after OCI/closer to bonus season to apply. Others have told me that's when firms will know if they have a specific need for an associate to start in early 2015. I'm wary about cutting it so close to the end of my clerkship, though.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Jul 10, 2014 2:25 pm

legalese_retard wrote:
AreJay711 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Agree completely. Dist. Ct. Clerk here. Over the year and a half of my clerkship, mass mailing accomplished nothing. Networking has yielded about 5 interviews, but it takes WORK.



Hey small question for any of the people who talked about networking: Do you use your court email for this?


I thought about it, especially since people are more likely to review an email with a court address. However, I think there are ethical issues since you would not be using for email address for "court business." Plus, I am working on several cases involving the same firms I am applying to.


Yeah, that's what I was thinking. Thanks.

And thanks to everyone on this thread for all the advice and the wake up call. I would probably have just lazily mass mailed apps in January / Feb if it wasn't for this thread but now I'm going to start reaching out to people to get my name out there at the beginning of my term.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Mon Jul 14, 2014 5:46 pm

Anyone with decent prospects? My clerkship is up in two weeks and I still haven't gotten any interviews.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:54 am

I gave up and just signed on to another year of clerkship but few of the clerks in our courthouse landed their job in the last couple of weeks so hopefully you land something soon!

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 15, 2014 11:35 am

Do federal clerks with good credentials (T-14, top 10%, etc) struggle finding work as much as this thread suggests? Are the folks with poor prospects the same folks that didn't have great prospects in terms of summer associate positions during law school?

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 15, 2014 11:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:Do federal clerks with good credentials (T-14, top 10%, etc) struggle finding work as much as this thread suggests? Are the folks with poor prospects the same folks that didn't have great prospects in terms of summer associate positions during law school?


As a corollary to this question: do COA clerks have an easier time finding biglaw work than district court clerks (assuming the target firms are in the same circuit or city as the clerkship)? I'm doing district now, COA after, and reading all this makes me worry about my longterm prospects. (I have a biglaw offer but it's not where the circuit is).

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Do federal clerks with good credentials (T-14, top 10%, etc) struggle finding work as much as this thread suggests? Are the folks with poor prospects the same folks that didn't have great prospects in terms of summer associate positions during law school?


As a corollary to this question: do COA clerks have an easier time finding biglaw work than district court clerks (assuming the target firms are in the same circuit or city as the clerkship)? I'm doing district now, COA after, and reading all this makes me worry about my longterm prospects. (I have a biglaw offer but it's not where the circuit is).


You have a biglaw offer. Why are you worried? Do you think it will be rescinded?

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Do federal clerks with good credentials (T-14, top 10%, etc) struggle finding work as much as this thread suggests? Are the folks with poor prospects the same folks that didn't have great prospects in terms of summer associate positions during law school?


As a corollary to this question: do COA clerks have an easier time finding biglaw work than district court clerks (assuming the target firms are in the same circuit or city as the clerkship)? I'm doing district now, COA after, and reading all this makes me worry about my longterm prospects. (I have a biglaw offer but it's not where the circuit is).


Biglaw firms care about your grades being above their cutoffs and where you went to law school. If your grades are above their cutoffs at a law school they're willing to hire from, it comes down to other things: relevant pre-law school work experience, ties to the area, and, of course, fit. All of this changes, however, if you already have 2+ years of actual biglaw experience before you start clerking. Having significant experience before you start clerking makes you much more marketable after your clerkship is over, because recruiters can sell you as a lateral rather than an entry-level graduate with some clerkship experience.

That being said, if a biglaw firm is not hiring, they are not hiring. You're going to have a hard time convincing firms to hire you when they don't have a need, no matter how stellar your credentials are.
Last edited by ExBiglawAssociate on Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:52 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:You have a biglaw offer. Why are you worried? Do you think it will be rescinded?


No, I am looking to move. Did not go to a T14 so grades will likely come into play, but I should meet all the necessary cutoffs I think.

Would you be willing to PM?

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:You have a biglaw offer. Why are you worried? Do you think it will be rescinded?


No, I am looking to move. Did not go to a T14 so grades will likely come into play, but I should meet all the necessary cutoffs I think.


Like I said above, it depends on whether the firm is willing to hire from your school and whether there's a need. It sounds like your grades won't be a problem. Also, none of this is really black and white. If there is an extreme need, firms might reach to lower-ranked schools or slightly lower grades. If there's no need, you're going to have to be a SCOTUS clerk or something, regardless of school/grades cutoffs.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 15, 2014 1:07 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Like I said above, it depends on whether the firm is willing to hire from your school and whether there's a need. It sounds like your grades won't be a problem. Also, none of this is really black and white. If there is an extreme need, firms might reach to lower-ranked schools or slightly lower grades. If there's no need, you're going to have to be a SCOTUS clerk or something, regardless of school/grades cutoffs.


Thanks. Luckily, still have a little time before starting the search. Guess I'll start networking until then.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 23, 2014 9:23 am

I had a couple interviews lined up, but I cancelled all but one of them. I REALLY liked this litigation boutique I interviewed at--hoping to hear back from them in the next few days. If I don't get an offer from them, then I'm going to clerk for my judge for another year.

I had a pretty easy time landing interviews; a few things in particular helped. First, I had a rule that I had to have at least one informational interview a week. Almost every attorney I asked responded, and I ended up getting more than a few interviews this way (like 20% of the time, the informational interview would turn into a real interview). Second, and this may be a bit controversial, use a recruiter. I found a decent recruiter; he really helped me get a feel for which firms were good to work for and which firms weren't. He was also much much much more connected with biglaw hiring needs than I was. I focused on lit boutiques and smaller firms, and he would work on biglaw positions. Third, my judge has been on the bench for a long time. I had lunch with a few of his former clerks, and those often turned into leads or interview opportunities.

I don't think any of that is particularly revolutionary, just thought I'd post in case someone found it helpful. Good luck to those who are still looking!

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 23, 2014 2:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I had a couple interviews lined up, but I cancelled all but one of them. I REALLY liked this litigation boutique I interviewed at--hoping to hear back from them in the next few days. If I don't get an offer from them, then I'm going to clerk for my judge for another year.

I had a pretty easy time landing interviews; a few things in particular helped. First, I had a rule that I had to have at least one informational interview a week. Almost every attorney I asked responded, and I ended up getting more than a few interviews this way (like 20% of the time, the informational interview would turn into a real interview). Second, and this may be a bit controversial, use a recruiter. I found a decent recruiter; he really helped me get a feel for which firms were good to work for and which firms weren't. He was also much much much more connected with biglaw hiring needs than I was. I focused on lit boutiques and smaller firms, and he would work on biglaw positions. Third, my judge has been on the bench for a long time. I had lunch with a few of his former clerks, and those often turned into leads or interview opportunities.

I don't think any of that is particularly revolutionary, just thought I'd post in case someone found it helpful. Good luck to those who are still looking!


Re: the recruiter. Do you have any practice experience aside from your clerkship? I'll have clerked about three years between district and COA when I'm done, and will have done it straight from law school. I've heard that recruiters are sometimes reticent to work with people who do not have experience in a firm already. My extent of biglaw experience was my time as a summer associate.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:51 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I had a couple interviews lined up, but I cancelled all but one of them. I REALLY liked this litigation boutique I interviewed at--hoping to hear back from them in the next few days. If I don't get an offer from them, then I'm going to clerk for my judge for another year.

I had a pretty easy time landing interviews; a few things in particular helped. First, I had a rule that I had to have at least one informational interview a week. Almost every attorney I asked responded, and I ended up getting more than a few interviews this way (like 20% of the time, the informational interview would turn into a real interview). Second, and this may be a bit controversial, use a recruiter. I found a decent recruiter; he really helped me get a feel for which firms were good to work for and which firms weren't. He was also much much much more connected with biglaw hiring needs than I was. I focused on lit boutiques and smaller firms, and he would work on biglaw positions. Third, my judge has been on the bench for a long time. I had lunch with a few of his former clerks, and those often turned into leads or interview opportunities.

I don't think any of that is particularly revolutionary, just thought I'd post in case someone found it helpful. Good luck to those who are still looking!


Re: the recruiter. Do you have any practice experience aside from your clerkship? I'll have clerked about three years between district and COA when I'm done, and will have done it straight from law school. I've heard that recruiters are sometimes reticent to work with people who do not have experience in a firm already. My extent of biglaw experience was my time as a summer associate.


None beyond being a summer associate. I was a K-JD too. Some may, but recruiters are more willing to help clerks on the theory that you'll come back and use them again if you need to lateral in the future.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:45 am

So one of the legal recruiting companies finally responded to my resume submission. Since I was a "law clerk" for a federal judge, the recruiter thought that this would be a great opportunity for me:

Call Center Law Clerks assist in the collection of delinquent property taxes, through phone collection and suit preparation.

Job Skills Requirements:
Must have excellent oral communication skills
Must have excellent written communication skills
Must have clear and neat handwriting.
Must be well organized.
Must have good computer skills.
Must have excellent critical-thinking skills.
Must be self-motivated and able to work independently.
Must be able to grasp complicated legal concepts.

Compensation: $10.00 per hour. Non-negotiable. No benefits included at this time.

I'm starting to feel sick.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby ResIpsa21 » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:27 pm

legalese_retard wrote:So one of the legal recruiting companies finally responded to my resume submission. Since I was a "law clerk" for a federal judge, the recruiter thought that this would be a great opportunity for me:

Call Center Law Clerks assist in the collection of delinquent property taxes, through phone collection and suit preparation.

Job Skills Requirements:
Must have excellent oral communication skills
Must have excellent written communication skills
Must have clear and neat handwriting.
Must be well organized.
Must have good computer skills.
Must have excellent critical-thinking skills.
Must be self-motivated and able to work independently.
Must be able to grasp complicated legal concepts.

Compensation: $10.00 per hour. Non-negotiable. No benefits included at this time.

I'm starting to feel sick.


Oh lordie. That's horrible. Have you talked to real recruiters? The biglaw kind? I understand they usually don't work with clerks because they can't collect fees for placement with biglaw, but maybe one would be able to give you some advice? I can't believe there aren't any IP lit firms nation-wide that want to snatch up a X.D. Tex. clerk who worked on an IP heavy docket.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Thu Jul 31, 2014 4:44 pm

Anyone else whose clerkship is about to end still jobless? Clerkship ends for me next week and I still haven't had any real interviews. The most promising lead I had was a firm that asked for my transcript last week.

Other than that, my inbox has been getting filled with rejection emails and viagra ads. I think the spambots looking at my emails are getting confused with the kinds of rejections I am getting.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby luthersloan » Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:36 pm

Is there any temp doc review work near you (or in a location you could move to easily?) I friend of mine who finished his clerkship and shortly thereafter found himself without work has been doing that for several months. He finds it to be a relatively inoffensive way to pay the bills while he looks for a permanent job.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Sun Aug 10, 2014 5:12 pm

luthersloan wrote:Is there any temp doc review work near you (or in a location you could move to easily?) I friend of mine who finished his clerkship and shortly thereafter found himself without work has been doing that for several months. He finds it to be a relatively inoffensive way to pay the bills while he looks for a permanent job.


Not really. The few that are available require previous doc review experience. I applied to one doc review project that didn't say anything about prior experience, but it was only paying $10/hour.

Now that my clerkship is officially over, guess I can attend more bar association CLEs/meetings. Other than that, I can only live off my limited savings and hope some firm gets desperate enough to hire me.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 20, 2014 6:57 pm

For those of us who aren't up on the lingo, what does "K-JD" mean?

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby insideman » Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:11 pm

Firms are still interviewing clerks. It's pretty late in the cycle, but sometimes people decide not to go back to their old Firm for whatever reason and a spot could open up. Also, for alum clerks the closer you get to an end date the better idea a Firm has of their needs. I wouldn't give up just yet, but KEEP NETWORKING.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:For those of us who aren't up on the lingo, what does "K-JD" mean?


Meaning kindergarten through JD--no work experience or break between HS and college or college and lawl school.

insideman wrote:Firms are still interviewing clerks. It's pretty late in the cycle, but sometimes people decide not to go back to their old Firm for whatever reason and a spot could open up. Also, for alum clerks the closer you get to an end date the better idea a Firm has of their needs. I wouldn't give up just yet, but KEEP NETWORKING.


Yup, I've had good success with just cold emailing or calling partners and setting up a time to talk/grab lunch or whatever. One partner strung me along for a while, saying that he wanted to hire an associate but hadn't gotten permission. I followed up every 6-10 weeks and emailed him a few days ago. He said he just got permission and wanted to interview me with the associates in his practice group in the next three days. I thought the interview went pretty well; I should find out next week whether I got the offer.

I sent out a few electronic apps, but I never heard back from any of those firms ever, so I abandoned that road pretty early on. I'm a huge fan of the networking phone call or lunch meeting if you're lucky enough to be in the city where you want to practice. You get to hear all kinds of cool stories, learn about how people got to where they are, and roughly 2/3 of mine have resulted in an interview (though sometimes there was a pretty big delay between the lunch meeting and interview).

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:15 am

Anyone know of any specific firms actually looking? For the life of me, I cannot get the stars to align. The firms that seem to be interested in me don't have positions, and the firms that do have positions aren't interested. At this point, I just want to make sure I don't do anything that will screw me over any more so long-term.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby ResIpsa21 » Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:39 am

legalese_retard wrote:Anyone know of any specific firms actually looking?
My biglaw firm just sent around our monthly internal recruiting opportunities newsletter with the headline "referrals encouraged." If I recall correctly from your earlier posts, you'd be a candidate for IP, right? Or are you looking broadly? Some openings are listed in this newsletter in our TX offices.

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Re: Post-Clerkship Job hunt (Fall 2014 cycle)

Postby legalese_retard » Fri Aug 22, 2014 10:43 am

ResIpsa21 wrote:
legalese_retard wrote:Anyone know of any specific firms actually looking?
My biglaw firm just sent around our monthly internal recruiting opportunities newsletter with the headline "referrals encouraged." If I recall correctly from your earlier posts, you'd be a candidate for IP, right? Or are you looking broadly? Some openings are listed in this newsletter in our TX offices.


I worked on a couple of patent cases as a clerk, but I don't have an engineering or science background. I'd say 10% of the work I did while clerking was patent related, so I don't think I'd be too competitive for IP positions.




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