WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

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WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 08, 2019 1:40 am

Haven't seen much info on here on the value of an NDNY/WDNY district clerkship for NY Biglaw (except one thread with like 3 basically unhelpful posts lol). Have to decide whether to interview soon...I'm coming from a mag clerkship in SDNY/EDNY/CDCal/NDCal after 1-2 years of practicing beforehand (in non-big law) so I feel like if i'm going to clerk for another year it REALLY needs to be worth it (otherwise i run into the, "do you really want to practice?" problem).

I want to practice in NY big law, I have NY ties but went to law school in CA. Can't really say much more without outing me. I've been telling myself that I'd only clerk for another year in 2nd Cir/9th Cir/SDNY/CDCal but it looks like this will be the only interview panning out given the timing. Right now i've been interviewing for associate gigs but it's tough out here for magistrate clerks, apparently, given my zero offers so far lol. Not sure whether to keep plugging on that or take my chances on this clerkship...it's still very early in hiring for law firms for me to be worried about striking out, so i'm leaning towards not taking this interview but need some more advice. Thanks!

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koval

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby koval » Thu May 09, 2019 10:18 am

WDNY/NDNY district-court clerkships are great to have on the resume for NYC biglaw. Personally, I think that the larger problem is that you don't have biglaw on your resume. I've seen circuit-court clerks with no prior biglaw experience (albeit from non-T14 schools in flyover circuits) strike out with NYC biglaw firms.

I can't really offer advice on what you should do to break into NYC biglaw. But, I'm relatively confident on my above advice that WDNY/NDNY district-court clerkships are well-considered for NYC biglaw.

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby LBJ's Hair » Thu May 09, 2019 2:14 pm

Can't speak to WDNY/NDNY specifically, but if you are currently doing a magistrate court clerkship and do not have prior BigLaw experience, you're not really in a position to say "I only want to do SDNY/NDCal/2d Cir./9th Cir." Like I'm sure you're a smart guy/gal and would be an excellent clerk, but you need to be realistic about how attractive your resume is vis-a-vis other applicants.

Is your clerkship ending this summer?

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 09, 2019 4:20 pm

LBJ's Hair wrote:Can't speak to WDNY/NDNY specifically, but if you are currently doing a magistrate court clerkship and do not have prior BigLaw experience, you're not really in a position to say "I only want to do SDNY/NDCal/2d Cir./9th Cir." Like I'm sure you're a smart guy/gal and would be an excellent clerk, but you need to be realistic about how attractive your resume is vis-a-vis other applicants.

Is your clerkship ending this summer?


It's ending in September. I don't mean to sound conceited, I just mean I feel that, another clerkship (meaning 2 years total clerking) would put me 4 years out of law school and raise questions of whether i want to practice. So that clerkship HAS to be something worthwhile. I've (personally) accepted my employment outcome if I come straight out of the gate with mag clerkship. I knew it was a gamble and I've accepted not working in big law a long time ago, just giving it a final shot. And if I'm not gonna get it, I don't want to waste a year clerking when I can get as good of a job as I'll ever get now. So basically unless a second clerkship would give me a MAJOR boost (i.e., those districts/circuits I mentioned), it could be counterproductive.

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Elston Gunn

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Elston Gunn » Thu May 09, 2019 4:43 pm

2 years of practice + 2 years of clerking does not in anyway suggest you don’t want to practice, at least to me. 2 years of clerking at different levels is totally common.

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Wild Card

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Wild Card » Thu May 09, 2019 4:49 pm

Clerking for a district court judge is a very high honor and it can only be an asset to you.

I hope that I'll be in as fortunate a position as you are.

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby LBJ's Hair » Thu May 09, 2019 8:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
LBJ's Hair wrote:Can't speak to WDNY/NDNY specifically, but if you are currently doing a magistrate court clerkship and do not have prior BigLaw experience, you're not really in a position to say "I only want to do SDNY/NDCal/2d Cir./9th Cir." Like I'm sure you're a smart guy/gal and would be an excellent clerk, but you need to be realistic about how attractive your resume is vis-a-vis other applicants.

Is your clerkship ending this summer?


It's ending in September. I don't mean to sound conceited, I just mean I feel that, another clerkship (meaning 2 years total clerking) would put me 4 years out of law school and raise questions of whether i want to practice. So that clerkship HAS to be something worthwhile. I've (personally) accepted my employment outcome if I come straight out of the gate with mag clerkship. I knew it was a gamble and I've accepted not working in big law a long time ago, just giving it a final shot. And if I'm not gonna get it, I don't want to waste a year clerking when I can get as good of a job as I'll ever get now. So basically unless a second clerkship would give me a MAJOR boost (i.e., those districts/circuits I mentioned), it could be counterproductive.


Right, I understand, and I totally think you should chase the BigLaw thing if you want it. But you don't need a 2/9/SDNY/CDCal clerkship to get a generic NY BigLaw job---like so would DNJ, EDPA, EDNY, literally any COA. That'd be a huge resume boost for you.

I guess what I'm saying is I think you overestimate how attractive a candidate you are for clerkships, employers, etc *right now*, but *underestimate* how attractive you'd be with a good-not-amazing Article III clerkship.

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Wild Card

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Wild Card » Thu May 09, 2019 8:21 pm

koval wrote:I've seen circuit-court clerks with no prior biglaw experience (albeit from non-T14 schools in flyover circuits) strike out with NYC biglaw firms.


I wanted to say I think this is an absolute disgrace--but on second thought everyone and his mother wants to be a litigator. There's so much competition for so few opportunities.

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 09, 2019 10:54 pm

I clerked in one of WDNY/NDNY. We had clerks go to NY biglaw. Most were returning to firms that they were at pre-clerkship, but there were a couple that got NY biglaw without prior biglaw experience. No outcome is guaranteed, but the experience working CA2 caselaw and NY state law (removal cases), plus standard federal law cases you would see in any district court, in WDNY/NDNY is valuable. With that said, obviously if you have the opportunity to do EDNY/SDNY or a COA, that will be more helpful in getting NY biglaw.

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2019 10:05 pm

Current NYC biglaw going to WDNY/NYNY d. ct. clerkship for a year. I second everything thats been said, and also want to add that there are two things you're under-estimating about being in that area. First - the value of being within an hour's flight or a 4-6 hour drive from NYC when you're applying/interviewing for biglaw. And second - you'll be surprised by how many people you'll be interacting with who came from nyc biglaw or SDNY/EDNY.

Also those districts are still very hard to get. There are fewer judges and fewer spots than downstate. Don't shoot yourself in the foot by ruling out something you may not even get.

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Re: WDNY/NDNY for NY Biglaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2019 11:41 pm

Thanks for the advice everyone (hope it helps someone else). I actually recently got an offer at a boutique i am very happy with, so I didn't take the interview. I will prob avoid big law forever, which honestly I'm pretty satisfied with :)



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