Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:05 pm

utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.

Give us some numbers on personal injury, would you care to make another thread detailing what kind of salaries and what kind of income a personal injury lawyer can make/expect on a year by year break down, and how to break into personal injury law. I am really interested now.

User avatar
boredatwork
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby boredatwork » Thu Apr 26, 2012 5:21 pm

There is small firm I know of in LA that starts new associates off at 85k and the partners are bringing home 500-800k a year, but it is a defense firm.

Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:09 am

Lord Randolph McDuff wrote:Shit law is way too large of a category. I'm still in school and work part-time in shitlaw-- (sitting in my office as we speak..) and I'd have to say the cases can be really interesting. All four I'm working on now are interesting to me-- contract stuff, crim defense, some crazy defamation claim. Some of it can be downright hilarious. Also the two partners here make about half a million a year, so you can make money if you build your own practice. I think the last associate they hired was two years ago and he started at 70k, although I don't think he makes too much more than that now.

The majority of posters here would say this was "shitlaw," but I'd rather do this than big law. I'm happy in life and not very ambitious-- working in big law would dominate everything, whereas everyone here has a life outside the office. Hell, the higher you are on the pyramid scheme that is legal employment the less you work in shitlaw. The partners might work 30 a week..

LOL.
Isn't it ironic that shit law partners are netting more than big law counterparts in the long run if they are clever. I mean there is a way to hide your income through shell corporations if you know what I mean when your partner at a 2 man firm thats impossible in a major hundred partner firm.

Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:13 am

utlaw2007 wrote:
RedBirds2011 wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.


I will agree with this with one caveat. Family law and probate can be very lucrative if you get into high net worth cases, which is similar to the difference between car accidents and high payout plaintiffs work. Also, isn't patent litigation pretty much biglaw territory?



That is a very good point you raise. A wills an estates lawyer who manages a very large estate or a lawyer who does a very large bankruptcy makes a lot of money. Doing traffic tickets suck. But doing DUI's (if you have a little volume are absolutely great) And if you get a murder case, you've hit the jackpot. A lot of lawyers charge like 60 grand for a murder case. Others charge 20k+ which is on the cheaper side.

Patent infringement as well as contract litigation (my specialty) can be done on all scales. You might have a small corporation that just doesn't want to pay biglaw fees or they can't afford biglaw fees. So that's where smaller firms like mine come in to help and save the day. Most everything can be reduced to a smaller scale that is too small for biglaw.

Construction litigation is another main practice area of mine. That is an area that some biglaw firms here in Texas practice. They oversee projects that are hundreds of millions if not a few billion dollars large. However, if you have a dispute where the amount in controversy is only 1, 5 ,or 10 million dollars, that is far too small a case for a biglaw firm to take. So guess who is coming to save the day in that scenario?


I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.

User avatar
RedBirds2011
Posts: 623
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby RedBirds2011 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:25 am

Geon wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:
RedBirds2011 wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.


I will agree with this with one caveat. Family law and probate can be very lucrative if you get into high net worth cases, which is similar to the difference between car accidents and high payout plaintiffs work. Also, isn't patent litigation pretty much biglaw territory?



That is a very good point you raise. A wills an estates lawyer who manages a very large estate or a lawyer who does a very large bankruptcy makes a lot of money. Doing traffic tickets suck. But doing DUI's (if you have a little volume are absolutely great) And if you get a murder case, you've hit the jackpot. A lot of lawyers charge like 60 grand for a murder case. Others charge 20k+ which is on the cheaper side.

Patent infringement as well as contract litigation (my specialty) can be done on all scales. You might have a small corporation that just doesn't want to pay biglaw fees or they can't afford biglaw fees. So that's where smaller firms like mine come in to help and save the day. Most everything can be reduced to a smaller scale that is too small for biglaw.

Construction litigation is another main practice area of mine. That is an area that some biglaw firms here in Texas practice. They oversee projects that are hundreds of millions if not a few billion dollars large. However, if you have a dispute where the amount in controversy is only 1, 5 ,or 10 million dollars, that is far too small a case for a biglaw firm to take. So guess who is coming to save the day in that scenario?


I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


Yes. They do.

User avatar
boredatwork
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby boredatwork » Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:31 am

Is the kicker here "If they get charged" A good attorney with the right connections could get you charged with a less serious crime correct?

User avatar
dood
Posts: 1639
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:59 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby dood » Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:04 am

Lord Randolph McDuff wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:
Lord Randolph McDuff wrote:
dood wrote:big law = firms that do important deals and litigation, often between multinational fortune 100 corps.

ie
AT&T FTC antitrust review
FB IPO

shit law = private for-profit practices that do everything else, typically advertising on billboards, TV, bus stops

ie
insurance defense
DUI defense


So shitlaw is everything else, but the truth is only probably 1% of "shit law" advertises on billboards, TV, or bus stops. Also you don't really think the middle to upper middle class can afford big law? So where do they go to get their legal work done? I guess they only need help with insurance defense/DUI defense.......


Agreed. That is the biggest problem with this site and it is primarily the reason why I am on it. I want to dispel myths for those who are being misled due to the misinformation on this site. There are too many kids on here that comment on the profession that know NOTHING about the profession. Not all banks and smaller corporations, can afford or even want to pay for biglaw services. But like I always say, let those who know nothing continue acting on their flawed thinking. It does you no harm if they think that way.


Haha I think my favorite is he put "for-profit" by shitlaw and not big law. Yeah those altruists who work for the very richest people on the planet, god love em.


u sub-160 morons. read the title of OPs post. does it say "describe everything between shit and big"? NO. OP asked about "Big Law vs "Shit" Law" - and i answered his Q.

User avatar
RedBirds2011
Posts: 623
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby RedBirds2011 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:31 am

I think you missed the point. He was making fun of you because you seemed to imply biglaw wasn't "for profit" lol I'm sure you didnt actually mean this, but it kind of flowed that way.

Also :lol: to "sub 160 morons"

Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:10 am

Lord Randolph McDuff wrote:
dood wrote:big law = firms that do important deals and litigation, often between multinational fortune 100 corps.

ie
AT&T FTC antitrust review
FB IPO

shit law = private for-profit practices that do everything else, typically advertising on billboards, TV, bus stops

ie
insurance defense
DUI defense


So shitlaw is everything else, but the truth is only probably 1% of "shit law" advertises on billboards, TV, or bus stops. Also you don't really think the middle to upper middle class can afford big law? So where do they go to get their legal work done? I guess they only need help with insurance defense/DUI defense.......


Funny story, I know a guy who went into to a major law firm and wanted representation for a case that was worth about 100k. The lawyer there told him that he (the lawyer) couldn't afford his own firms legal bill and he charges $700 an hour. So yeah. If someone making 200k a year can't afford big law, that tells you that shit law ain't that shitty.

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby rad lulz » Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:20 am

Geon wrote:I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.

I worked for a successful, established solo and we would charge like $75k for the retainer, and an extra $50k-$75k if the thing went to trial. Money comes from family or whatever usually. Also we would do payment plans. Families would put up a mortgage on a house to secure a promissory note.

edit: This is probably on the lower end for what we would charge too. Also keep in mind that that's a flat fee, so that money goes into stuff like investigators and experts and whatnot. It wasn't uncommon to pay an investigator like $5k cash. So not all of that is pocketed.

Well since murder in a lot of states makes you eligible for death penalty of life in prison, it's not something you want to fuck around with even though the odds are against you. Cmon bro.

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby rad lulz » Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:47 am

boredatwork wrote:Is the kicker here "If they get charged" A good attorney with the right connections could get you charged with a less serious crime correct?

If you get hit w a murder a good defense atty could get you to cop to a 2nd degree or a manslaughter depending on the strength of the state's case, how committed they are to prosecuting, etc.

utlaw2007
Posts: 783
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:49 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby utlaw2007 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:23 am

rad lulz wrote:
boredatwork wrote:Is the kicker here "If they get charged" A good attorney with the right connections could get you charged with a less serious crime correct?

If you get hit w a murder a good defense atty could get you to cop to a 2nd degree or a manslaughter depending on the strength of the state's case, how committed they are to prosecuting, etc.


You can't get a charge reduced no matter what you do at the beginning of a case. But you can plea to a lower charge. But I'm talking getting charged with murder in the first place. And the other poster was right. People sell all of their private possessions, mortgage their house, and do whatever else they need to come up with the money.

Like the above poster said, you're either faced with going to jail for a long time or you're facing the death penalty. So you are going to take extraordinary steps to get cash to save yourself.

I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


If you are charged with murder, you are not going to pretty much get convicted. It just depends on the lawyer representing you.
Last edited by utlaw2007 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

utlaw2007
Posts: 783
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:49 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby utlaw2007 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:26 am

Geon wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.

Give us some numbers on personal injury, would you care to make another thread detailing what kind of salaries and what kind of income a personal injury lawyer can make/expect on a year by year break down, and how to break into personal injury law. I am really interested now.


There are no stats that I'm aware of. And even if there were, they're not going to distinguish a personal injury practice that does nothing but minor car accidents from one that does nothing but catastrophic personal injury or wrongful death.

utlaw2007
Posts: 783
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:49 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby utlaw2007 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 9:37 am

utlaw2007 wrote:
Geon wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.

Give us some numbers on personal injury, would you care to make another thread detailing what kind of salaries and what kind of income a personal injury lawyer can make/expect on a year by year break down, and how to break into personal injury law. I am really interested now.


There are no stats that I'm aware of. And even if there were, they're not going to distinguish a personal injury practice that does nothing but minor car accidents from one that does nothing but catastrophic personal injury or wrongful death.


I don't want to hijack the thread, but I don't have stats to start a thread. But one gets into it by becoming a civil trial lawyer. So you need to learn civil procedure for both federal and the state you live in by taking those classes. You need to learn the rules of evidence by taking the class. And you should participate in your school's interscholastic mock trial program or take an advocacy class. After that, it's best that you start out by working or even clerking for a PI firm. The pay will be absolutely terrible for an associate who's not making the firm money (i.e. winning cases in court), but you will learn the ropes of personal injury litigation which isn't much different than any other type of civil litigation.

User avatar
rickgrimes69
Posts: 1107
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2012 8:56 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby rickgrimes69 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:17 pm

Geon wrote:I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


"oh well I'm probably going to be convicted anyway so why spare the expense"

:roll:


Also I'm trying to back this up with a source but murder is a very commonly unsolved crime. Clearance rate for U.S. homicides in 2010 was only about 65%, although this varies from city to city - 92% in San Diego, for example, compared to a measly 22% in New Orleans. In any event, murder cases are most definitely not open-shut.

Edit: Sources
--LinkRemoved--
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this ... 8r9zSH1a6L
http://www.thecrimereport.org/archive/h ... u-s-cities

User avatar
angrybird
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:15 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby angrybird » Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:44 pm

rickgrimes69 wrote:Also I'm trying to back this up with a source but murder is a very commonly unsolved crime. Clearance rate for U.S. homicides in 2010 was only about 65%, although this varies from city to city - 92% in San Diego, for example, compared to a measly 22% in New Orleans. In any event, murder cases are most definitely not open-shut.

Edit: Sources
--LinkRemoved--
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this ... 8r9zSH1a6L
http://www.thecrimereport.org/archive/h ... u-s-cities

shitlaw lawyers get hired to cover up their clients' murders? count me in.

User avatar
Wily
Posts: 280
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:35 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Wily » Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:51 pm

So far this thread has delivered more than 99% of TLS threads have.

UTLaw, out of curiosity, how does employment/discrimination law fare on the scale of profitability for smaller firms? I work right now as a paralegal for a plaintiff's side employment law firm and my boss seems to make decent money. Usually the cases settle for low six figures but we do have one with 20 plaintiffs that's settling for above a million. It's also an area of law that's pretty interesting to me, even after writing a few dozen complaints for racial/gender/age discrimination.

Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 10:24 pm

utlaw2007 wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:
Geon wrote:
utlaw2007 wrote:The other key is that you have to own your own law firm. You cannot make that kind of money working for someone else. And when you own your own law firm, you have to work hard to get business. But if you do, the work MAY come. It just depends on how hard you work and how smart you work. Many lawyers who pose as trial lawyers are broke. However, really good ones make a ton of money. I would say that you have to be a good trial lawyer and you have to be an even better business man.

Give us some numbers on personal injury, would you care to make another thread detailing what kind of salaries and what kind of income a personal injury lawyer can make/expect on a year by year break down, and how to break into personal injury law. I am really interested now.


There are no stats that I'm aware of. And even if there were, they're not going to distinguish a personal injury practice that does nothing but minor car accidents from one that does nothing but catastrophic personal injury or wrongful death.


I don't want to hijack the thread, but I don't have stats to start a thread. But one gets into it by becoming a civil trial lawyer. So you need to learn civil procedure for both federal and the state you live in by taking those classes. You need to learn the rules of evidence by taking the class. And you should participate in your school's interscholastic mock trial program or take an advocacy class. After that, it's best that you start out by working or even clerking for a PI firm. The pay will be absolutely terrible for an associate who's not making the firm money (i.e. winning cases in court), but you will learn the ropes of personal injury litigation which isn't much different than any other type of civil litigation.


So how would one manage to get a steady stream of clients without engaging in unethical practices orrunning grossly expensive tv ads. I just have difficulty understanding that.

Geon
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:10 am

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Geon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 10:28 pm

rickgrimes69 wrote:
Geon wrote:I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


"oh well I'm probably going to be convicted anyway so why spare the expense"

:roll:


Also I'm trying to back this up with a source but murder is a very commonly unsolved crime. Clearance rate for U.S. homicides in 2010 was only about 65%, although this varies from city to city - 92% in San Diego, for example, compared to a measly 22% in New Orleans. In any event, murder cases are most definitely not open-shut.

Edit: Sources
--LinkRemoved--
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this ... 8r9zSH1a6L
http://www.thecrimereport.org/archive/h ... u-s-cities


Your analysis is off. My point was if you are charged you're like 90%+ to be convicted. You are posting the chance of being caught. If the murder rate being solved is 20% and 80% of murderers get away because a epic milenial hurricane wipes out the city and all the police confiscate guns and run away, then yes lots of people will get away. But those charged will still get convicted at like 90%+ rates

User avatar
RedBirds2011
Posts: 623
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby RedBirds2011 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 10:32 pm

Geon wrote:
rickgrimes69 wrote:
Geon wrote:I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


"oh well I'm probably going to be convicted anyway so why spare the expense"

:roll:


Also I'm trying to back this up with a source but murder is a very commonly unsolved crime. Clearance rate for U.S. homicides in 2010 was only about 65%, although this varies from city to city - 92% in San Diego, for example, compared to a measly 22% in New Orleans. In any event, murder cases are most definitely not open-shut.

Edit: Sources
--LinkRemoved--
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this ... 8r9zSH1a6L
http://www.thecrimereport.org/archive/h ... u-s-cities


Your analysis is off. My point was if you are charged you're like 90%+ to be convicted. You are posting the chance of being caught. If the murder rate being solved is 20% and 80% of murderers get away because a epic milenial hurricane wipes out the city and all the police confiscate guns and run away, then yes lots of people will get away. But those charged will still get convicted at like 90%+ rates


So you're saying if you had a 10 percent chance to not get convicted of murder you'd just tell your lawyer fuck it, the odds are against me, just let them give me the worst? Just because they are convicted doesn't mean they are getting the worst sentence they could have gotten. For example, you could get convicted but still get out of the death penalty and/or get convicted of a lesser charge than the original charge.

Edit: and I'm assuming your 90% is accurate so I'll let someone else address that.
Last edited by RedBirds2011 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 10:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby rad lulz » Fri Apr 27, 2012 10:33 pm

Geon wrote:
rickgrimes69 wrote:
Geon wrote:I'm sorry but do people really pay 60 grand to get off murder cases? I mean
1. where does the money come from?
2. Don't these people know that they are pretty much going to be convicted if charged with murder. Its not 100% but its like 90-93% or so I heard anyways.


"oh well I'm probably going to be convicted anyway so why spare the expense"

:roll:


Also I'm trying to back this up with a source but murder is a very commonly unsolved crime. Clearance rate for U.S. homicides in 2010 was only about 65%, although this varies from city to city - 92% in San Diego, for example, compared to a measly 22% in New Orleans. In any event, murder cases are most definitely not open-shut.

Edit: Sources
--LinkRemoved--
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/this ... 8r9zSH1a6L
http://www.thecrimereport.org/archive/h ... u-s-cities


Your analysis is off. My point was if you are charged you're like 90%+ to be convicted. You are posting the chance of being caught. If the murder rate being solved is 20% and 80% of murderers get away because a epic milenial hurricane wipes out the city and all the police confiscate guns and run away, then yes lots of people will get away. But those charged will still get convicted at like 90%+ rates

Your point though was "why hire a lawyer then, especially for $60k?" Well because a substantial portion of those 90% are from plea deals. You definitely need a lawyer for that.

Kimberly
Posts: 120
Joined: Sat Jul 23, 2011 10:45 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby Kimberly » Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:00 pm

Do none of these murder defense lawyers feel somewhat guilty about having clients mortgage their homes, etc for this type of thing knowing how bad the odds are for the clients? I hope the attys at least put their heart and soul into making the case... either way (assuming most people charged with murder are actually guilty), I couldn't sleep at night knowing that I either made the family of a murderer suffer their entire livelihoods for their murdering family member or that I got a murderer a lesser deserved punishment... I will take doc review and just spare life's extravagances... thanks.

User avatar
RedBirds2011
Posts: 623
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:26 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby RedBirds2011 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:14 pm

Kimberly wrote:Do none of these murder defense lawyers feel somewhat guilty about having clients mortgage their homes, etc for this type of thing knowing how bad the odds are for the clients? I hope the attys at least put their heart and soul into making the case... either way (assuming most people charged with murder are actually guilty), I couldn't sleep at night knowing that I either made the family of a murderer suffer their entire livelihoods for their murdering family member or that I got a murderer a lesser deserved punishment... I will take doc review and just spare life's extravagances... thanks.


1. A defense attorney has to eat to.

2. A lot of these trials are actually done by public defenders. If they can't afford it they get appointed one of these.

3. Yea, there's just this really annoying thing in the constitution that guarantees every individual in this country has the right to legal representation and a fair trial. We should totally just get rid of it. Fucking lawyers lol

Edit: I know you dont actually advocate that but I've been hearing it a lot lately IRL and it drives me absolutely freaking nuts so I'm venting lol
Last edited by RedBirds2011 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rad lulz
Posts: 9844
Joined: Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:53 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby rad lulz » Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:17 pm

Kimberly wrote:Do none of these murder defense lawyers feel somewhat guilty about having clients mortgage their homes, etc for this type of thing knowing how bad the odds are for the clients? I hope the attys at least put their heart and soul into making the case... either way (assuming most people charged with murder are actually guilty), I couldn't sleep at night knowing that I either made the family of a murderer suffer their entire livelihoods for their murdering family member or that I got a murderer a lesser deserved punishment... I will take doc review and just spare life's extravagances... thanks.

Whatever, they don't have to pay if they don't want to.

utlaw2007
Posts: 783
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 9:49 pm

Re: Big Law vs "Shit" Law. I don't get it.

Postby utlaw2007 » Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:24 pm

Wily wrote:So far this thread has delivered more than 99% of TLS threads have.

UTLaw, out of curiosity, how does employment/discrimination law fare on the scale of profitability for smaller firms? I work right now as a paralegal for a plaintiff's side employment law firm and my boss seems to make decent money. Usually the cases settle for low six figures but we do have one with 20 plaintiffs that's settling for above a million. It's also an area of law that's pretty interesting to me, even after writing a few dozen complaints for racial/gender/age discrimination.


Employment discrimination is actually one of my practice areas. I am plaintiff's side, as well. The cases are more complex than your typical PI or criminal case. But I like them. As far as profitability goes, it depends on your clients' cases. But overall, I'd say this is a good practice area that allows for a very good profit margin. Your clients should be professionals. It raises the value of the cases.

So how would one manage to get a steady stream of clients without engaging in unethical practices orrunning grossly expensive tv ads. I just have difficulty understanding that.


You have to get out there and meet as many people as you can. That's the hard part. I have no problem doing this because I am a very social person. When you make small talk with all kinds of people, big cases can spring out of nowhere. But you have to make small talk with LOTS of people. Only when you've built up a rep after years of doing this, will people come to you. Otherwise, you have to find your cases. But expand your superficial network as much as possible. Be out and about.

Also, be likeable. If your clients like you, they will refer other cases to you. I practice contracts litigation, construction litigation, employment discrimination, and products liability. I would not advise anyone to get involved with products liability unless you are partnered with a law firm with deep pockets. These cases have very large payouts, but they nearly all involve you suing a major corporation. And when you are suing a major corporation, you better have money to spend just to survive summary judgment. It's also imperative that you are VERY knowledgeable about civil procedure, both federal and state, because you will have to plead it perfectly, otherwise, your case WILL get dismissed. The first time I sued a major corporation who was foreign to the state of Texas, I must have pled like 7 paragraphs of jurisdiction just to make sure they could not get the case dismissed. I was up against the statute of limitations so I had no room for error.

This is all small firm work, but sometimes, you are going up against biglaw firms. So you better be ready. I haven't had to face any of my classmates yet, but a law school classmate of mine works at a small plaintiffs firm and he has already faced a classmate of ours working biglaw when going up against a major manufacturer.
Last edited by utlaw2007 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 11:45 pm, edited 3 times in total.




Return to “Ask a Law Student / Graduate”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: TripTrip and 5 guests