RickyDnwhyc wrote: Hutz_and_Goodman wrote: BunkMoreland wrote:
solotee wrote:If you're working big law in a southern market, for example, attorneys I worked with are usually in the office 12 hours a day, from 8 am until 8 pm, or 7 am to 7 pm, then go home to their families, usually doing 1 or 2 more hours of work until they bail out for the night. It really is a tough schedule day, after day, after day. It wears on you.
This definitely isn't true for all big southern firms. Attorneys at my office regularly work 9-6, with occasional bouts of 9-9 or 10 for deal closings or lit deadlines. For six figures in the south, you can't really complain.
People on here talk about big law and what they almost always mean is NYC/LA/SF/Chicago/Boston big law. These jobs in other markets are still taxing, but the pace of life overall is slower and similarly the big law pace is a lot but talking to attorneys who have been in both environments they say there is no comparison.
Does this mean that working big city big law is a monumentously terrible decision?
What are the benefits? You get to live in a nice city? And have no free time...
It's gotta be the prestige more than anything. "Oh, I work on Wall St"..........
Even if NYC / LA etc. firms pay higher salaries, this is EASILY offset by the reduced COL in the south, and then some.
This comes down to mobility in 5+ years down the road. If you have been born and bred in the market you take a job in, this argument will never be compelling to you.
However, assume a law student goes to an out of state t-14, gets offer at a big law firm in the South or Midwest, not a huge fan of area, but its a job so they take the offer. Five years later, they are not partner track and get the polite 'gtfo' talk by management. Now, this person is stuck in the unpleasant situation of having market experience in a place they do not want to live. It is possible for them to lateral to another major area, but this gets very tough as these markets all have their respective regional BigLaw firms they draw from.
On the other hand, the legal profession places a lot of weight on both those firms that are considered prestigious, and in what are considered prestigious areas (NYC/Chi/LA). After five years at one of these firms, the person will probably have networked in some sort (deals, disputes, alumni networks) with the regional biglaws in the market they want to parachute into. This + prestige of firm's name -> Attractive to the other market.
However, in the realities of ITE, if you have no big law offer in the major market areas, and you get one in the South or Midwest, take it for god's sake. Life happens, you just take the best route you can.