How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

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How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Nov 17, 2016 3:23 pm

What is the best way to ask for the LOR? Do you offer to come visit them to catch up in person and casually bring it up? Or is it okay to directly ask for one in an email?

Also I believe we need at least 2 from academic sources right? Could it be 1 academic and 1 former employer?

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mjb447

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Re: How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby mjb447 » Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:40 pm

If you have the kind of relationship where you often drop in just to catch up, it's fine to mention it then. That said, if a person would take a negative view of me or be offended because I requested a recommendation via email, I probably wouldn't use that person as a recommender. (Of course, after you ask they may want to see your resume or talk to you about why you want to clerk.) Honestly, I think most people would prefer a direct approach to a perfunctory in-person visit followed by an "ask."

Judges vary in what kinds of recs they prefer, but I had no problems using recs from recent legal jobs where the recommenders could really speak to my personality and the quality of my work. That was partially because I applied as an alum, though; I wouldn't have been as comfortable using recs from summer employers, and I definitely wouldn't have used any of my pre-law school employers.

ETA I'd try to get three recs if you haven't.

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Re: How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:30 pm

It's fine to ask directly by email. I agree that you will probably need three letters. One employer is fine - there are some judges who want to see employers' recs, and if you then have 2 profs the more academic focused judges should be fine.

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Re: How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:12 pm

Thank you for the replies. When asking for LORs, does each recommender write one for each judge or can they write a generic LOR to be kept on file for my use? I am only applying for 1 position and will likely ask 3 recommenders, but I don't want to keep coming back to ask for more from them. Thank you.

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mjb447

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Re: How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby mjb447 » Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:33 pm

I used generic, kept-on-file LORs with no problems. A recommender usually doesn't have to do much tailoring for any particular judge (obviously, if a recommender knows a judge personally, a more tailored rec and a phone call will probably be in order). Generic letters can also be turned around faster, often without your recommender's direct involvement if the letter's already on file.

That said, not every recommender is comfortable with putting a letter on file somewhere, in which case you're stuck asking for another letter each time you apply to a position. (I found this to be more the case with my employers, who were probably less accustomed to how this process works.)

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Re: How to ask for letter of rec and from who?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:37 pm

mjb447 wrote:I used generic, kept-on-file LORs with no problems. A recommender usually doesn't have to do much tailoring for any particular judge (obviously, if a recommender knows a judge personally, a more tailored rec and a phone call will probably be in order). Generic letters can also be turned around faster, often without your recommender's direct involvement if the letter's already on file.

That said, not every recommender is comfortable with putting a letter on file somewhere, in which case you're stuck asking for another letter each time you apply to a position. (I found this to be more the case with my employers, who were probably less accustomed to how this process works.)


This is a noob question but I am a little confused with the instructions on OSCAR. I have the ability to select the professor from the dropdown menu but how do I send out the link to fill in the LOR? Is this process done like LSAC during law school admissions where you add a recommender and an email link is sent out to the professor to fill in the letter electronically? On OSCAR, I do not see any send button to launch the LOR request.



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