When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

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When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:17 pm

I apologize in advance, as I am sure this question is often asked and answered. I couldn't find a recent thread about it though.

I've only just begun my clerkship for a district court in the midwest. My goal is to go biglaw in LA after my clerkship (previous ties to LA as well as a brief stint in biglaw there before clerking). It seems that hiring cycles are all over the place, and firms are willing to lock in good talent well in advanced. Therefore, I am wondering what a good time frame to begin applying would be.

Further, what are the best methods? I imagine personal contacts in a firm would be best, but outside of that, do you just email the recruiting contacts directly with your resume? Has anyone used a legal headhunter? Are there any pros vs. cons to using one?

Any insight would be appreciated.

Jchance

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Re: When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby Jchance » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:19 pm

Common advice I heard is immediately after New Year.

No need for headhunter.

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rpupkin

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Re: When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby rpupkin » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:23 pm

Clerks typically apply in January and February. Most firms are done hiring by April, though some will still interview/hire clerks in late spring or early summer, depending on need.

You should definitely check in with your judge about this. Some judges won't permit their clerks to apply to firms until relatively late in the clerkship.

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Re: When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby Boltsfan » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:59 pm

rpupkin wrote:You should definitely check in with your judge about this. Some judges won't permit their clerks to apply to firms until relatively late in the clerkship.


This is important. There are judges out there who take this very seriously; I had friends who were not allowed to officially accept offers from their SA firms before their clerkship. Some judges do not care, but not all.

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Re: When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 07, 2016 10:13 am

OP here, thanks for all the info! I will start applying around January. Any input as to the method? Should I just email recruiters at the firms I am interested in?

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alicrimson

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Re: When and how to start applying for biglaw, during clerkship

Postby alicrimson » Fri Oct 14, 2016 3:05 pm

I think it largely depends on the market. I'm in a mid-size regional market that has biglaw firms, some of which have their home office here, and I was told it was too early to apply when I applied six months out from the end date of my clerkship. A lot of places, at least where I live, seem to hire only if they have a need. If there is a need, they often don't want to wait six months for the clerkship to finish. YMMV though, because I have no idea where you're applying or how larger markets like NYC or D.C. work.



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