Question: Animal Law?

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yeslekkkk
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Question: Animal Law?

Postby yeslekkkk » Fri Dec 13, 2013 8:33 pm

Is this actually a thing? Is there a field for this? Are there any current students or graduates who took some courses on animal law and doing something with it?

masterbrowski
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby masterbrowski » Fri Dec 13, 2013 8:38 pm

yeslekkkk wrote:Is this actually a thing? Is there a field for this? Are there any current students or graduates who took some courses on animal law and doing something with it?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YvSx7-CTTl4

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mr. wednesday
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby mr. wednesday » Fri Dec 13, 2013 8:42 pm

There are some lawyers working at the animal legal defense fund, and probably PETA and various SPCAs. Or there are attorneys that are more environmental attorneys dealing with fish and game. But of the very limited number of positions like that, I would guess only a much, much smaller number have anything to do with 'animal law.' PETA needs first amendment lawyers and employment lawyers and probably corporate lawyers, not people who are experts in animals or animal law.

HYSenberg
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby HYSenberg » Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:25 am

I remember seeing a job posting recently for ALDF in norcal that paid around 30k. If you're passionate about that kind of work and have a good LRAP it could certainly be a fulfilling career.

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Mauve.Dino
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby Mauve.Dino » Sat Dec 14, 2013 9:57 am

I'm also interested in Animal Law, OP, and it's difficult to find more than a class or two being offered on the subject at any law school. However, Lewis & Clark Law School (Oregon) actually has an Animal Law center that you might find interesting. If I lived on the West Coast, I'd probably apply just for this: http://law.lclark.edu/centers/animal_law_studies/

Ti Malice
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby Ti Malice » Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:24 am

If you actually want to practice it, you had better not go to a place like L&C.

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stillwater
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby stillwater » Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:26 am

lulwut?

go to the best school you can. best school for animal law is Yale.

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OneMoreLawHopeful
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby OneMoreLawHopeful » Sat Dec 14, 2013 2:46 pm

yeslekkkk wrote:Is this actually a thing? Is there a field for this? Are there any current students or graduates who took some courses on animal law and doing something with it?


What do you mean by "animal law"?

I know someone that practices livestock law as part of a more general agriculturally-related practice in the Central Valley of California. He was actually able to secure a job surprisingly easily (he had bad grades from a non T14, graduated ITE), mostly because it's a field no one is interested in, you have to move to some place like Bakersfield/Fresno, and he had ties to the area so he was able to come off as "not totally desperate." The pay is pretty bad, but the CoL is low in that region, so it evens out somewhat. It definitely exists, and given his experience w/ respect to grades, it's probably an option for more people than they think (though the "ties" thing may be all important, it's hard to say).

By contrast, if by "animal law" you mean "human rights for animals," no, that's not a real field.

Ti Malice
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby Ti Malice » Sat Dec 14, 2013 3:19 pm

OneMoreLawHopeful wrote:By contrast, if by "animal law" you mean "human rights for animals," no, that's not a real field.


Animal rights law is a real field -- it's just a very small field. But organizations like the U.S. Humane Society and the ALDF do animal rights litigation and advocacy. You really need to be at YHS and have a demonstrated commitment to the field to have much of a chance of getting that kind of work. A friend of mine from Y who graduated last year is on an EJW fellowship doing animal rights litigation, actually.

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shifty_eyed
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby shifty_eyed » Sun Dec 15, 2013 1:19 am

I attended an Animal Law lunch even by accident. The speaker was a UT grad who had been super into environmental stuff, but happened to get a job with the ALDF. It sounds like a really interesting organization and it's more than just saving pandas. Though there aren't many jobs in the field, he made it sound like a growing area. A lot of schools have ALDF chapters, so that might be worth looking into. But if you just want to work with/help animals, I wouldn't go to law school.

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yeslekkkk
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby yeslekkkk » Sun Dec 15, 2013 2:26 am

Hey everyone. Thanks for your thoughts. I was just curious. I have a long history of working with animals through 4-H, showing, and professionally. I started off undergrad as an Animal Science major, but then I switched for various reasons. It just peaked my interest. I was thinking how there might be a field especially with the livestock industry in California. However, I would rather not live in the Central Valley. I appreciate the thoughts.

Should I Transfer??
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby Should I Transfer?? » Sun Dec 15, 2013 8:21 pm

Perhaps surprisingly, some animal law issues (including save the animal type issues) are handled by mid/large law firms. Some non-profit organizations have well-heeled supporters who hire well-heeled law firms to handle their litigation matters. While this is obviously an extremely narrow field, it does exist at a few biglaw firms.

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Lwoods
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Re: Question: Animal Law?

Postby Lwoods » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:15 pm

I've been pretty involved in the SALDF chapters at both my home school and visiting school and have taken the only course on the topic available to me (a 2 credit seminar at my visiting school). The field is extremely small. Like, smaller than entertainment law small. The ALDF doesn't have many full-time attorneys, but the headquarters is in NorCal if you're interested in working with them.

Many attorneys I've come across who deal with animal law issues do so as pro bono work or as a portion of their larger career (a USAO who deals with any animal trafficking issues, for example).

Some environmental law work may also include animal law work, but the interests don't always align. For example, animal rights activists often take issue with the effects of certain alternative energy proposals.

If you're interested in lobbying, there's probably more work there, with groups like PETA, Mercy for Animals, and the ASPCA. A law degree helps for those types of jobs, but it's not necessary. A big area for this is fighting farm subsidies.

Alternatively, you could weave it into a different primary practice, namely criminal prosecution, family law, trusts & estates, and real estate. Some of the criminal stuff could be cool (prosecuting the trafficking of endangered animals at the federal level or activities like dog fighting or cock fighting at the state level), but with the others, the animal aspects will be focused more on helping the people instead of the animals.

L&C is pretty much the only school that has any sort of focus on animal law, but don't by any means choose it for that. A handful of schools have AN animal law course, but course lists often change. It can be a small plus if you're stuck between two great offers, but don't let it be too influential. Mercy for Animals has a summer internship in LA that you could always look into for 1L summer. It doesn't pay anything, but it comes with housing.




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