Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

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patriot888
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Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby patriot888 » Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:17 pm

Thanks for all the input.
Last edited by patriot888 on Sat Nov 09, 2013 6:46 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Anonymous User
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Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 28, 2013 4:04 pm

I am currently clerking for a non-DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge this year but will be clerking for a DE/SDNY judge next year.

First off--outside of DE and SDNY it is way more that 50% consumer. Most places you would be like 98% consumer unless you get very lucky and some big corporation has to file in your district (probably because a DE or SDNY judge kicked the debtor out of his/her court). Maybe you would see more big chapter 11 cases in Chi/LA/Dallas but even there it would be less that 50% I'm sure and most places chapter 11 stuff is much less that 50%.

Based on your numbers I would say you have an uphill battle ahead of you. I was top 15% from a T20 with some very good bankruptcy-specific credentials and I didn't get DE/SDNY the first time around. I think a lot of the DE/SDNY judges like to see another clerkship or work experience before you start with them. I would say you have almost no shot just based on your numbers. Hiring in bankruptcy courts has gotten much more competitive in the past five years. DE judges probably get like 300-400 apps for one spot. I think your best chance would be to really emphasize your interest and experience in bankruptcy. I would say that bankruptcy judges are less driven by grades in their hiring decisions and like to see a demonstrated interest in bankruptcy. But, with the DE/SDNY judges they get so many apps that they are likely to find someone with both the grades and the demonstrated interest.

I will say I have no idea how URM would factor into this as I am not a URM. In short--it could be very tough for you to break in because of your school/grades. But, the fact that you are a URM and have some good bankruptcy experience could be a great boost (especially the experience). So, really do your best to accentuate your bankruptcy credentials and send out your apps, can't hurt. Do your best to get more bankruptcy stuff on your resume too--you could write something for the ABI journal, do the Duberstein moot court competition in NYC, etc.

Also, clerks from other bankruptcy judges besides SDNY and DE get biglaw. I have first hand knowledge of clerks from Houston/Dallas judges getting biglaw gigs, as well as Chicago and LA (those places you would see some decent Ch 11 activity). I have even seen some people from almost purely consumer judges in random districts get there--it took them much more hustling to get there though. So, since SDNY/DE seems like a bit of a long shot for you it may serve you well expand your base. You have good enough grades and some good bankruptcy specific credentials so you could get on with a bankruptcy judge somewhere. Then, in a year re-evaluate your chances and biglaw. You can also send out another round of apps to the SDNY/DE judges like I did. DE/SDNY is certainly an easier way into biglaw but not the only way a bankruptcy clerkship gets your there.

Sorry for the rambling--happy to answer any questions.

Anonymous User
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Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 28, 2013 7:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I am currently clerking for a non-DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge this year but will be clerking for a DE/SDNY judge next year.

First off--outside of DE and SDNY it is way more that 50% consumer. Most places you would be like 98% consumer unless you get very lucky and some big corporation has to file in your district (probably because a DE or SDNY judge kicked the debtor out of his/her court). Maybe you would see more big chapter 11 cases in Chi/LA/Dallas but even there it would be less that 50% I'm sure and most places chapter 11 stuff is much less that 50%.

Based on your numbers I would say you have an uphill battle ahead of you. I was top 15% from a T20 with some very good bankruptcy-specific credentials and I didn't get DE/SDNY the first time around. I think a lot of the DE/SDNY judges like to see another clerkship or work experience before you start with them. I would say you have almost no shot just based on your numbers. Hiring in bankruptcy courts has gotten much more competitive in the past five years. DE judges probably get like 300-400 apps for one spot. I think your best chance would be to really emphasize your interest and experience in bankruptcy. I would say that bankruptcy judges are less driven by grades in their hiring decisions and like to see a demonstrated interest in bankruptcy. But, with the DE/SDNY judges they get so many apps that they are likely to find someone with both the grades and the demonstrated interest.

I will say I have no idea how URM would factor into this as I am not a URM. In short--it could be very tough for you to break in because of your school/grades. But, the fact that you are a URM and have some good bankruptcy experience could be a great boost (especially the experience). So, really do your best to accentuate your bankruptcy credentials and send out your apps, can't hurt. Do your best to get more bankruptcy stuff on your resume too--you could write something for the ABI journal, do the Duberstein moot court competition in NYC, etc.

Also, clerks from other bankruptcy judges besides SDNY and DE get biglaw. I have first hand knowledge of clerks from Houston/Dallas judges getting biglaw gigs, as well as Chicago and LA (those places you would see some decent Ch 11 activity). I have even seen some people from almost purely consumer judges in random districts get there--it took them much more hustling to get there though. So, since SDNY/DE seems like a bit of a long shot for you it may serve you well expand your base. You have good enough grades and some good bankruptcy specific credentials so you could get on with a bankruptcy judge somewhere. Then, in a year re-evaluate your chances and biglaw. You can also send out another round of apps to the SDNY/DE judges like I did. DE/SDNY is certainly an easier way into biglaw but not the only way a bankruptcy clerkship gets your there.

Sorry for the rambling--happy to answer any questions.


Thank you. By the way, I am OP, though I mistakenly clicked "anonymous post."

Question: If most courts are more than 50% consumer, then why do BigLaw firms value the clerkship experience by literally giving you a backdoor into BigLaw?

I'm trying to make more sense of it. I'm sure I can get good recommendations from my externship bk judge and law firm. I am planning to write my case note and comment on a bk case. Yeah, I am sure I can get bk clerkship outside DE/SDNY... though, of course, I would prefer DE/SDNY.

Thank you for input.

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

Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 29, 2013 2:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I am currently clerking for a non-DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge this year but will be clerking for a DE/SDNY judge next year.

First off--outside of DE and SDNY it is way more that 50% consumer. Most places you would be like 98% consumer unless you get very lucky and some big corporation has to file in your district (probably because a DE or SDNY judge kicked the debtor out of his/her court). Maybe you would see more big chapter 11 cases in Chi/LA/Dallas but even there it would be less that 50% I'm sure and most places chapter 11 stuff is much less that 50%.

Based on your numbers I would say you have an uphill battle ahead of you. I was top 15% from a T20 with some very good bankruptcy-specific credentials and I didn't get DE/SDNY the first time around. I think a lot of the DE/SDNY judges like to see another clerkship or work experience before you start with them. I would say you have almost no shot just based on your numbers. Hiring in bankruptcy courts has gotten much more competitive in the past five years. DE judges probably get like 300-400 apps for one spot. I think your best chance would be to really emphasize your interest and experience in bankruptcy. I would say that bankruptcy judges are less driven by grades in their hiring decisions and like to see a demonstrated interest in bankruptcy. But, with the DE/SDNY judges they get so many apps that they are likely to find someone with both the grades and the demonstrated interest.

I will say I have no idea how URM would factor into this as I am not a URM. In short--it could be very tough for you to break in because of your school/grades. But, the fact that you are a URM and have some good bankruptcy experience could be a great boost (especially the experience). So, really do your best to accentuate your bankruptcy credentials and send out your apps, can't hurt. Do your best to get more bankruptcy stuff on your resume too--you could write something for the ABI journal, do the Duberstein moot court competition in NYC, etc.

Also, clerks from other bankruptcy judges besides SDNY and DE get biglaw. I have first hand knowledge of clerks from Houston/Dallas judges getting biglaw gigs, as well as Chicago and LA (those places you would see some decent Ch 11 activity). I have even seen some people from almost purely consumer judges in random districts get there--it took them much more hustling to get there though. So, since SDNY/DE seems like a bit of a long shot for you it may serve you well expand your base. You have good enough grades and some good bankruptcy specific credentials so you could get on with a bankruptcy judge somewhere. Then, in a year re-evaluate your chances and biglaw. You can also send out another round of apps to the SDNY/DE judges like I did. DE/SDNY is certainly an easier way into biglaw but not the only way a bankruptcy clerkship gets your there.

Sorry for the rambling--happy to answer any questions.


Thank you. By the way, I am OP, though I mistakenly clicked "anonymous post."

Question: If most courts are more than 50% consumer, then why do BigLaw firms value the clerkship experience by literally giving you a backdoor into BigLaw?

I'm trying to make more sense of it. I'm sure I can get good recommendations from my externship bk judge and law firm. I am planning to write my case note and comment on a bk case. Yeah, I am sure I can get bk clerkship outside DE/SDNY... though, of course, I would prefer DE/SDNY.

Thank you for input.


I think there is definitely a hierarchy. The DE/SDNY clerks definitely don't have to hustle as hard to get those big law spots and would be able to branch out more geographically. BK clerkships in Dallas/Chicago/LA give you a good shot at a big law gig because you will probably get enough chapter 11 experience to make a compelling case on your résumé/in an interview. But, you have to hustle harder and probably are confined to the geographical area of your clerkship since the fact that you clerked for the judge you may appear before is a plus. The people that get biglaw gigs from other random consumer districts probably hustled pretty hard and have some other X factor that makes them attractive (work exp or URM or something). It happens though--having even a consumer clerkship will certainly not hurt your career prospects and gets you a year of experience so you can start selling yourself as a pseudo lateral.

I don't want to make you feel like you a have absolutely no shot, with some good BK credentials and a good rec from a judge it is certainly possible since BK judges love a demonstrated interest in BK. Just don't put your eggs in one basket and know that there are other ways to get the biglaw restructuring gig...it's just gets more difficult as you go down the tiers of BK clerkships.

Good luck! Feel free to ask if you have any more questions.

Anonymous User
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Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Question: If most courts are more than 50% consumer, then why do BigLaw firms value the clerkship experience by literally giving you a backdoor into BigLaw?

I'm trying to make more sense of it. I'm sure I can get good recommendations from my externship bk judge and law firm. I am planning to write my case note and comment on a bk case. Yeah, I am sure I can get bk clerkship outside DE/SDNY... though, of course, I would prefer DE/SDNY.

Thank you for input.


I wouldn't say a BK clerkship is a "backdoor into BigLaw." I don't want to over-generalize, but I seriously doubt a clerkship in a small market is going to do much for you if you're looking to break into BigLaw.

A clerkship in a court located in a larger market that sees its fair share of large/mid-sized Chapter 11s (someone said 50/50 consumer to Chapter 11 - I seriously doubt there would even be that kind of parity. I would say 75/25 at most, and far more mid-sized or mini Chapter 11s than large ones) is obviously much more valuable because there are big/mid-sized/boutique firms in those cities that file those cases and hire BK clerks. I also imagine that some clerks in those larger markets could be able to get jobs with BigLaw firms in New York that are associated with mega-filings (this type of hiring might be rare these days due to the depressed BK market).

A clerkship in a large market is also valuable because you will be a pretty good candidate for a clerkship in SDNY/DE. I would say the more recognizable your judge, the better your chances of getting noticed by SDNY/DE judges.

Based on what you're telling us, I think you might have a shot at getting some interviews in larger market courts. SDNY or DE straight out of law school? I think the odds are long for anyone applying. You would be competing against clerks, top students from local schools, and even some practicing attorneys.

Anonymous User
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Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 07, 2013 1:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I am currently clerking for a non-DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge this year but will be clerking for a DE/SDNY judge next year.

First off--outside of DE and SDNY it is way more that 50% consumer. Most places you would be like 98% consumer unless you get very lucky and some big corporation has to file in your district (probably because a DE or SDNY judge kicked the debtor out of his/her court). Maybe you would see more big chapter 11 cases in Chi/LA/Dallas but even there it would be less that 50% I'm sure and most places chapter 11 stuff is much less that 50%.

Based on your numbers I would say you have an uphill battle ahead of you. I was top 15% from a T20 with some very good bankruptcy-specific credentials and I didn't get DE/SDNY the first time around. I think a lot of the DE/SDNY judges like to see another clerkship or work experience before you start with them. I would say you have almost no shot just based on your numbers. Hiring in bankruptcy courts has gotten much more competitive in the past five years. DE judges probably get like 300-400 apps for one spot. I think your best chance would be to really emphasize your interest and experience in bankruptcy. I would say that bankruptcy judges are less driven by grades in their hiring decisions and like to see a demonstrated interest in bankruptcy. But, with the DE/SDNY judges they get so many apps that they are likely to find someone with both the grades and the demonstrated interest.

I will say I have no idea how URM would factor into this as I am not a URM. In short--it could be very tough for you to break in because of your school/grades. But, the fact that you are a URM and have some good bankruptcy experience could be a great boost (especially the experience). So, really do your best to accentuate your bankruptcy credentials and send out your apps, can't hurt. Do your best to get more bankruptcy stuff on your resume too--you could write something for the ABI journal, do the Duberstein moot court competition in NYC, etc.

Also, clerks from other bankruptcy judges besides SDNY and DE get biglaw. I have first hand knowledge of clerks from Houston/Dallas judges getting biglaw gigs, as well as Chicago and LA (those places you would see some decent Ch 11 activity). I have even seen some people from almost purely consumer judges in random districts get there--it took them much more hustling to get there though. So, since SDNY/DE seems like a bit of a long shot for you it may serve you well expand your base. You have good enough grades and some good bankruptcy specific credentials so you could get on with a bankruptcy judge somewhere. Then, in a year re-evaluate your chances and biglaw. You can also send out another round of apps to the SDNY/DE judges like I did. DE/SDNY is certainly an easier way into biglaw but not the only way a bankruptcy clerkship gets your there.

Sorry for the rambling--happy to answer any questions.


Thank you. By the way, I am OP, though I mistakenly clicked "anonymous post."

Question: If most courts are more than 50% consumer, then why do BigLaw firms value the clerkship experience by literally giving you a backdoor into BigLaw?

I'm trying to make more sense of it. I'm sure I can get good recommendations from my externship bk judge and law firm. I am planning to write my case note and comment on a bk case. Yeah, I am sure I can get bk clerkship outside DE/SDNY... though, of course, I would prefer DE/SDNY.

Thank you for input.


Why can't you go back to the boutique firm you worked at?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273345
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:44 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I am currently clerking for a non-DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge this year but will be clerking for a DE/SDNY judge next year.

First off--outside of DE and SDNY it is way more that 50% consumer. Most places you would be like 98% consumer unless you get very lucky and some big corporation has to file in your district (probably because a DE or SDNY judge kicked the debtor out of his/her court). Maybe you would see more big chapter 11 cases in Chi/LA/Dallas but even there it would be less that 50% I'm sure and most places chapter 11 stuff is much less that 50%.

Based on your numbers I would say you have an uphill battle ahead of you. I was top 15% from a T20 with some very good bankruptcy-specific credentials and I didn't get DE/SDNY the first time around. I think a lot of the DE/SDNY judges like to see another clerkship or work experience before you start with them. I would say you have almost no shot just based on your numbers. Hiring in bankruptcy courts has gotten much more competitive in the past five years. DE judges probably get like 300-400 apps for one spot. I think your best chance would be to really emphasize your interest and experience in bankruptcy. I would say that bankruptcy judges are less driven by grades in their hiring decisions and like to see a demonstrated interest in bankruptcy. But, with the DE/SDNY judges they get so many apps that they are likely to find someone with both the grades and the demonstrated interest.

I will say I have no idea how URM would factor into this as I am not a URM. In short--it could be very tough for you to break in because of your school/grades. But, the fact that you are a URM and have some good bankruptcy experience could be a great boost (especially the experience). So, really do your best to accentuate your bankruptcy credentials and send out your apps, can't hurt. Do your best to get more bankruptcy stuff on your resume too--you could write something for the ABI journal, do the Duberstein moot court competition in NYC, etc.

Also, clerks from other bankruptcy judges besides SDNY and DE get biglaw. I have first hand knowledge of clerks from Houston/Dallas judges getting biglaw gigs, as well as Chicago and LA (those places you would see some decent Ch 11 activity). I have even seen some people from almost purely consumer judges in random districts get there--it took them much more hustling to get there though. So, since SDNY/DE seems like a bit of a long shot for you it may serve you well expand your base. You have good enough grades and some good bankruptcy specific credentials so you could get on with a bankruptcy judge somewhere. Then, in a year re-evaluate your chances and biglaw. You can also send out another round of apps to the SDNY/DE judges like I did. DE/SDNY is certainly an easier way into biglaw but not the only way a bankruptcy clerkship gets your there.

Sorry for the rambling--happy to answer any questions.


Thank you. By the way, I am OP, though I mistakenly clicked "anonymous post."

Question: If most courts are more than 50% consumer, then why do BigLaw firms value the clerkship experience by literally giving you a backdoor into BigLaw?

I'm trying to make more sense of it. I'm sure I can get good recommendations from my externship bk judge and law firm. I am planning to write my case note and comment on a bk case. Yeah, I am sure I can get bk clerkship outside DE/SDNY... though, of course, I would prefer DE/SDNY.

Thank you for input.


Why can't you go back to the boutique firm you worked at?


I'm with my boutique. I didn't extern and work with boutique at same time. It is a good firm - the best bk boutique in the area. When I say, "I struck out of OCI" I mean "I struck out of BigLaw." I am not applying to the non-BigLaw OCI firms because my boutique is better than all of non-BigLaw OCI firms. I just want to succeed in my goal of tapping into BigLaw. I will do whatever it takes to tap into BigLaw. When I apply for clerkships, I will have at least 1.5 to 2 years of high end bk boutique experience and 3-4 months of bk externship experience.

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emciosn
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Re: Chances at DE or S.D.N.Y. Bankruptcy Clerkship

Postby emciosn » Thu Oct 10, 2013 2:25 pm

My understanding is that if you were not biglaw material prior to your bankruptcy clerkship, you will likely not land a biglaw job as a product of your bankrutpcy clerkship. Now, most of the people who clerked for the bankruptcy judges in SDNY and DE probably end up in biglaw. But, is this because of some sort of clerkship boost (there probably is some boost) or because the person had biglaw numbers (school/gpa) to begin with? It is probably more that latter than the former since the DE and SDNY bankruptcy judges get some very qualified applicants. It could be, for instance, that someone from a good school did not have biglaw grades at the time of 2L OCI but killed 2L year and would have biglaw type numbers except that 3L OCI is a joke most places. So, take those good numbers, clerk for a DE/SDNY bankruptcy judge and proceed to biglaw. Or maybe someone that had biglaw type numbers and had a biglaw SA just wants to do a DE/SDNY clerkship so that can land at Weil and work on the best cases.

My point is that if you like the boutique you are with and they have that could of a reputation it may be for the best to just stay put if they offer post-grad employment. It sounds like a pretty decent gig actually as decent ch 11 bankrutpcy boutiques are few and far between. Top 25% from a top 50 law school is probably not biglaw type numbers (not a URM so I dont know how that factors in) and a bankruptcy clerkship probably won't change that much. There is a chance that a clerkship in SDNY/DE would, but they chances of you getting that clerkship are low.

By all means try--you never know what could happen. I am just thinking that going all in where you are at might be a better plan (if that is a possibility).




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