Changes during interview

Seek and share information about clerkship applications, clerkship hiring timelines, and post-clerkship employment opportunities.
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are sharing sensitive information about clerkship applications and clerkship hiring. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned."
Anonymous User
Posts: 327360
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Changes during interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:05 pm

Hi everyone,

I have a bit of a dilemma. A few weeks ago I applied for a clerkship with a non-Art III judge with Start Date X. I recently got an interview and went. Personality-wise, I really enjoyed meeting her and her staff. The only problem is that she told me during the interview that the start date will actually be Start Date Y, which is significantly after Start Date X, and that the salary will be ~ 75% expected due to hiring logistics. (I won't get into the details due to privacy reasons.) I got an offer very shortly after.

As I said before, I really like the judge and think I can learn a lot from her. The city she's in is very expensive, and my own saving likely won't be enough. Though I'm reluctant to ask my folks for money, I would do it if I could find a way to pay them back later. Unfortunately, I just learned from my firm that not only will they not pay the clerkship bonus for this clerkship, they won't even take me back after the clerkship due to it not being an Art III position. They want me to do Art III, and nothing but Art III, and this I found out only after I got the offer. This was a pretty crushing blow for me, as I was depending on the money to pay my folks back. And with the starting date being later, I'm likely looking at a gap time after the clerkship, so that's just more lost income.

So what do I do now? I know we're not supposed to say no to a judge, but I don't think I have an option. If it were only a change or two, I could make due or just deal with it. But right now I'm looking at losing my job and the connections I have, a lower pay, a inconvenient timeline, a resume gap and forgoing any other opportunities I might have. (I have also interviewed with other judges, some of whom really like me but said they needed more time due to a handful of late interviewers.)

Advice? Help? Anyone else been in this situation?

Thanks for listening.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Posts: 29306
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Changes during interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:16 pm

I think given all the circumstances you're fine saying no. Admittedly, in theory you could have found out earlier that the firm wouldn't hold your place for anything but AIII, and so could have known not to apply, but I can see how that might not come up. The other stuff you couldn't know. If this judge gave you time to consider, and didn't say anything like "before we start the interview I should let you you still want to go forward?" (that is, you haven't affirmatively said those conditions are okay), any reasonable person will understand if you say no.

(I know you're not supposed to apply if you wouldn't accept but I think most judges are actually reasonable and don't want people to feel there's a gun to their head. And in the end pissing off one judge is probably worth not losing your job.)

Anonymous User
Posts: 327360
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Changes during interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:26 pm

OP here, PMed you

User avatar

Posts: 3402
Joined: Mon May 31, 2010 1:39 am

Re: Changes during interview

Postby Lavitz » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:29 pm

+1 to what Nony said. I think it would be ridiculous to voluntarily lose your job in order to (1) clerk for a non-article III judge with low pay and a gap period and (2) avoid possibly making the judge a little upset.

User avatar

Posts: 5659
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:32 pm

Re: Changes during interview

Postby rpupkin » Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:05 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I think given all the circumstances you're fine saying no.

Definitely agree.

Oh, and OP, start looking for another firm. It's one thing for your firm to say that it won't give you a bonus for a magistrate clerkship--that's just general market practice. But it's quite another thing for your firm to say that it will refuse to hire you after a magistrate clerkship. That's a strange and hostile thing to say. I wouldn't want to work at that firm.

User avatar

Posts: 1280
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2013 4:36 am

Re: Changes during interview

Postby mjb447 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:06 pm

Yeah, ideally you would have gone into the interview knowing your firm's policy - if that alone wasn't a dealbreaker - and then withdrawn shortly after finding out about the pay cut and start date, but I think it would be alright to decline the offer. The fact that you've had other interviews also suggests that this won't be your only chance to clerk, and the fact that the judge gave you a little time to think it over suggests (although it's not a sure thing) that she actually wants you to consider whether you'd like to clerk for her and give an honest answer.

Return to “Judicial Clerkships�

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.