How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

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priorities2
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How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby priorities2 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 12:23 am

I'm considering going to law school and becoming a private immigration lawyer. I really like the idea of working 40-50 hours a week - I'm not really willing to go over that, and if I have kids I'd like to reduce the amount for a while. Would this be realistic for an immigration lawyer?

Thanks for your input!

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JD Janitor
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby JD Janitor » Thu Jul 05, 2012 1:07 pm

I know a thing or two about immigration firms. New associates at the top firms (like Fragomen) work approximately 60-70 hrs a week...sometimes alittle less sometimes more. After several years this time can decrease. You will not find an associate position within a reputible immigration firm that will allow 40hr/wk

priorities2
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby priorities2 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 8:57 pm

Thanks for the reply. What about a solo practitioner/smaller practice that focuses less on employment based immigration?

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DCDuck
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby DCDuck » Thu Jul 05, 2012 9:00 pm

For a solo practitioner (immigration law or otherwise) the number of hours you work depends largely on how much money you want to make (or if a client's needs turn out to be more than you estimated). If you are looking for a job with few hours, law is probably not the best field to look into.

priorities2
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby priorities2 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:30 am

Hmm.

Are there fields of law that require less weekly hours than others?

I'm currently a sophomore in college wavering between pursuing a law degree or a direct entry master's in psychiatric nursing. I'm really interested in both psychology and the law, and I'd like a career where I don't need to move, I have good job security, and I have a good work-life balance. The con of a psych MSN is that I'd be dealing with really difficult people, which would be rewarding and fascinating, but it's also the reason human service professions have such a high burn-out rate.

I'm wondering if there's any way I could turn a law degree into a path that fits my criteria. I've got fantastic grades so far, not sure how I'll do on the LSAT of course, but I wouldn't bother pursuing law if I couldn't go to a T14 school. So just assuming I do, are there any secure, lucrative (ie starting pay higher than 60k, potential higher than 100k) jobs within the legal field that do not require such long hours?

Thank you again. I appreciate the comments!

Eliyahu7
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby Eliyahu7 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:41 am

priorities2 wrote:Are there fields of law that require less weekly hours than others?


A lot of government work is generally around the 40 hour mark.

priorities2
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby priorities2 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:11 am

I'd heard that before. Can you go into any more detail about government law? What are the most lucrative paths in it? I know some types of gov law might not even reach 60k...? Or is that an exaggeration?

LiberalLaw
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby LiberalLaw » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:31 am

priorities2 wrote:I'd heard that before. Can you go into any more detail about government law? What are the most lucrative paths in it? I know some types of gov law might not even reach 60k...? Or is that an exaggeration?



It depends on the position. The think the maximum pay rates are for U.S. Attorney's. Maybe in the range of low six figures.

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rayiner
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby rayiner » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:46 am

LiberalLaw wrote:
priorities2 wrote:I'd heard that before. Can you go into any more detail about government law? What are the most lucrative paths in it? I know some types of gov law might not even reach 60k...? Or is that an exaggeration?



It depends on the position. The think the maximum pay rates are for U.S. Attorney's. Maybe in the range of low six figures.


Federal attorneys are the ones who will be making six figures. They will not be working 40 hours/week.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby JamMasterJ » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:56 am

the government employees working 40 hrs per week and the ones making 6 figures are not the same people

LiberalLaw
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby LiberalLaw » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:05 am

rayiner wrote:
LiberalLaw wrote:
priorities2 wrote:I'd heard that before. Can you go into any more detail about government law? What are the most lucrative paths in it? I know some types of gov law might not even reach 60k...? Or is that an exaggeration?



It depends on the position. The think the maximum pay rates are for U.S. Attorney's. Maybe in the range of low six figures.


Federal attorneys are the ones who will be making six figures. They will not be working 40 hours/week.



I agree. I was stating the maximum amount of compensation for any public sector employee.

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nygrrrl
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby nygrrrl » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:36 am

rayiner wrote:
Federal attorneys are the ones who will be making six figures. They will not be working 40 hours/week.

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DCDuck
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby DCDuck » Fri Jul 06, 2012 11:51 am

A lot of people are looking for an interesting job with a good work/life balance, good pay, and few hours. Let me know when you find one. Those jobs are few and far between in the law (and most field I suspect.)

Tip: It sucks, but hard work is usually required for success. Bummer, huh?
Last edited by DCDuck on Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Samara
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby Samara » Fri Jul 06, 2012 11:58 am

HAI GAIZ. I was just wondering, are there jobs where I can get paid large sums of money for little work with no work experience? Oh, and I would really prefer to have excellent job security and be able to work wherever I please. These kind of jobs are just lying around, right? I can only assume that people don't take them because they haven't bothered to do even a minute of research into possible career fields.

attractive_NUisance
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby attractive_NUisance » Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:38 pm

Law is a service profession that is generally pretty well compensated because you are applying specialized knowledge to help people. When people or companies need lawyers they generally have big issues that have to be resolved quickly so they want a lawyer who will work hard until problems are solved. Generally, lawyers work more than every other field outside of finance and medicine.

It is possible to start a solo practice and set your own hours if you want. However, literally almost no one does this from T14 schools right after graduating and you will need a lot of post-law school training before you are ready to do this in a competent way.

People are mocking you because you didn't do your homework about this profession. There are lots of fields out there and good luck finding one that is a good fit with you. Once more for emphasis: If you are looking for a lifestyle profession where you don't need to work a lot it is not law.

attractive_NUisance
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby attractive_NUisance » Fri Jul 06, 2012 12:43 pm

priorities2 wrote:I'm currently a sophomore in college wavering between pursuing a law degree or a direct entry master's in psychiatric nursing.


PS either way you'll be around a lot of crazy people

priorities2
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby priorities2 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:48 pm

Not all fields of medicine require more than 40 hrs a week. Psychiatry is one area that doesn't. Also many finance jobs don't require more than 40 hrs a week -- think personal financial advising, or govt finance jobs. High compensation and prestige does not always equal long hours well after formalized education is over.

Law is a very diverse field. I think it would be difficult to do homework into all the nooks and crannies where one can find a lawyer job. My close relative is a lawyer, and works in a small business environment around other lawyers. I've informationally interviewed a lawyer besides my relative and I've found that they have extremely different job descriptions. That's why I ask for opinions on this forum. If you find that decision to be mock-worthy, fine. =) Perhaps I'll learn more than you in the long run, I'm more open to asking what might be stupid questions.

grace123
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby grace123 » Thu Jul 12, 2012 8:43 pm

Ignore the haters and obnoxious trolls.

Seconded that I have heard a lot of government jobs are less strenuous in terms of hours and workload. They also have good benefits and they qualify for loan forgiveness through IBR after 10 years. You're not going to be making as much as your peers and the work is generally more tedious, but you will probably be getting a better work/life balance. :D

sandiego222
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby sandiego222 » Fri Jul 13, 2012 12:53 pm

Almost ANY degree-required job is more than 40 hrs/ week these days. Maybe consider being flexibility into the 50 hr+ range

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IAFG
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby IAFG » Fri Jul 13, 2012 1:02 pm

priorities2 wrote:Not all fields of medicine require more than 40 hrs a week. Psychiatry is one area that doesn't. Also many finance jobs don't require more than 40 hrs a week -- think personal financial advising, or govt finance jobs. High compensation and prestige does not always equal long hours well after formalized education is over.

Law is a very diverse field. I think it would be difficult to do homework into all the nooks and crannies where one can find a lawyer job. My close relative is a lawyer, and works in a small business environment around other lawyers. I've informationally interviewed a lawyer besides my relative and I've found that they have extremely different job descriptions. That's why I ask for opinions on this forum. If you find that decision to be mock-worthy, fine. =) Perhaps I'll learn more than you in the long run, I'm more open to asking what might be stupid questions.

You sound every bit as young as you are.

Personal finance gigs with ligh hours and high pay? Maybe if you're former NFL and know dozens of people with $$$$$. Medical fields with stability, predictable hours and high pay? Please name some. If you want a mommy-friendly job, you aren't going to make $$$. End of story.

marksen
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby marksen » Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:23 am

deleted

Jacques_Bentley
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby Jacques_Bentley » Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:41 pm

Before I started law school, I worked as a paralegal at a well-regarded boutique firm that practiced immigration law exclusively. The attorneys there worked no more than 45-50 hours per week. It was definitely conducive to a healthy work-life balance. That having been said, I couldn't tell you what salaries they earned (definitely nowhere near biglaw numbers), nor how common such opportunities are these days (probably fairly rare).

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buddyt
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby buddyt » Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:42 pm

I know a c/o 2012 TTT graduate w/median grades working in the Phoenix area who has been at a couple 2-3 attorney immigration places. At both firms the hours were never more than 40-45/week, and the pay was a lot more than the $45k bi-modal peak (but certainly less than $115k market).

utlaw2007
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby utlaw2007 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:06 pm

priorities2 wrote:I'm considering going to law school and becoming a private immigration lawyer. I really like the idea of working 40-50 hours a week - I'm not really willing to go over that, and if I have kids I'd like to reduce the amount for a while. Would this be realistic for an immigration lawyer?

Thanks for your input!


You should not consider going to law school if you aren't ready to work more weekly hours than what you stated.

Going solo is the only way you can work less than 40 hrs a week as a lawyer and still make a lot of money. But that is far from a guarantee. That is not common in the least bit. The most likely reason for a solo working less than 40 hours a week is that you have no cases to work. And if you have no cases to work, you're probably living on the street or close to it. I would say that most small firms would still work you over 50 hours a week. If there is no need to, then why would the firm owners hire you? What good would you be to them?

timbs4339
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Re: How many hrs must a private immigration attorney work/wk?

Postby timbs4339 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:58 pm

utlaw2007 wrote:
priorities2 wrote:I'm considering going to law school and becoming a private immigration lawyer. I really like the idea of working 40-50 hours a week - I'm not really willing to go over that, and if I have kids I'd like to reduce the amount for a while. Would this be realistic for an immigration lawyer?

Thanks for your input!


You should not consider going to law school if you aren't ready to work more weekly hours than what you stated.

Going solo is the only way you can work less than 40 hrs a week as a lawyer and still make a lot of money. But that is far from a guarantee. That is not common in the least bit. The most likely reason for a solo working less than 40 hours a week is that you have no cases to work. And if you have no cases to work, you're probably living on the street or close to it. I would say that most small firms would still work you over 50 hours a week. If there is no need to, then why would the firm owners hire you? What good would you be to them?


This. And although you might be able to average 40 a week and still make decent money, you'll be working 70-80 hours certain weeks, such as before trial.

OP: I have a decent paying, interesting government job and average about 50 hours- but that includes nine months of the year when 60 is more like the average. The most I've done is 100.




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