What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

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PeanutsNJam
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby PeanutsNJam » Mon May 18, 2015 8:23 am

I believe there are far, far less than 10k biglaw SA's out there.

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 9:20 am

PeanutsNJam wrote:I believe there are far, far less than 10k biglaw SA's out there.


yea, if there were 10k summer associates spots open then that means almost 25% of the class of 2013 (44k grads) got biglaw jobs

highly unlikely

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Mon May 18, 2015 9:58 am

Biglaw plus Fed Clerk was like 7500-8000 last year I believe. Don't think there are another 2k SA's that pay well but 10k may not have been far off for class of 2014.

The bigger problem is that there aren't too many good jobs beyond those first 10k.

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 11:38 am

Tiago Splitter wrote:Biglaw plus Fed Clerk was like 7500-8000 last year I believe. Don't think there are another 2k SA's that pay well but 10k may not have been far off for class of 2014.

The bigger problem is that there aren't too many good jobs beyond those first 10k.


But looking at the salary data from 1985 compRed to 2000 shows that even small firm jobs pay more than they did back in the 'good' days. There just seems to be ~10% fewer jobs to go around (on my phone can't look up exact stats atm)

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OhBoyOhBortles
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby OhBoyOhBortles » Mon May 18, 2015 11:41 am

Being a special snowflake, mostly.

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haus
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby haus » Mon May 18, 2015 12:08 pm

OhBoyOhBortles wrote:Being a special snowflake, mostly.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon May 18, 2015 2:47 pm

starry eyed wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:Biglaw plus Fed Clerk was like 7500-8000 last year I believe. Don't think there are another 2k SA's that pay well but 10k may not have been far off for class of 2014.

The bigger problem is that there aren't too many good jobs beyond those first 10k.


But looking at the salary data from 1985 compRed to 2000 shows that even small firm jobs pay more than they did back in the 'good' days. There just seems to be ~10% fewer jobs to go around (on my phone can't look up exact stats atm)

Aren't all salaries now higher than in 1985? Have they kept up with inflation/COL?

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 3:28 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
starry eyed wrote:
Tiago Splitter wrote:Biglaw plus Fed Clerk was like 7500-8000 last year I believe. Don't think there are another 2k SA's that pay well but 10k may not have been far off for class of 2014.

The bigger problem is that there aren't too many good jobs beyond those first 10k.


But looking at the salary data from 1985 compRed to 2000 shows that even small firm jobs pay more than they did back in the 'good' days. There just seems to be ~10% fewer jobs to go around (on my phone can't look up exact stats atm)

Aren't all salaries now higher than in 1985? Have they kept up with inflation/COL?


i adjusted the stats that someone else provided earlier ITT by putting the salaries into an inflation calculator.

for instance 20k was the 2-10 firm salary in 1985, after adjusting for inflation, it is 46k

idk about other professions but i don't think it would be hard to pull them up to compare, i'll try to find physician salaries

the avg physician's salary was 45k in 1973 (220k in today's dollars) so their salaries have not experienced similar increases as law
Last edited by starry eyed on Mon May 18, 2015 3:40 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon May 18, 2015 3:35 pm

Does that make $46k a good salary, though, especially given what law school cost in 1985 and what it costs today?

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 3:38 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Does that make $46k a good salary, though, especially given what law school cost in 1985 and what it costs today?


well yea if we are gonna still assume sticker price in both situations then i see your point, but the law school business model today is way different. Sticker paying students are subsidizing scholly'd students.

my point is that if you can go at the right price, law school is not any worse of a deal that it was 30 years ago

i think everyone should go to the top ranked school that they can go for free (while taking location preferences/ties into account)

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 3:47 pm

i think it would be interesting to see how much the avg matriculant PAYS to attend law school, then we can have a more meaningful discussion than comparing tuition

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djbatista
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby djbatista » Mon May 18, 2015 4:46 pm

The cost/benefit ratio of going to law school can always be debated, and for some it may not make sense. The bottom line is becoming an attorney offers you the opportunity to achieve great success in America, both in a monetary and social sense. Anyone who refuses to acknowledge this is likely not seeing things clearly, and thinking more from a fear/failure perspective. This is not what successful people do. Why the hell are we doing this if not because we believe it will be beneficial?

Yes, there's debt involved in going to law school. There's debt involved in growing a successful business from the ground up. There's debt involved in purchasing a house (for most people). If you're smart and work hard, chances are you will find success. This goes not just for law but all professions and areas of life.

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LA Spring
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby LA Spring » Mon May 18, 2015 4:55 pm

starry eyed wrote:for instance 20k was the 2-10 firm salary in 1985, after adjusting for inflation, it is 46k


Even with a minimal tuition debt, hard to fathom that 20k (9.62 an hour) was an acceptable attorney’s wage. Although 46k today (22.12 an hour) seems even worse given the lofty tuition debt.

Speaking of tuitions. Has any presidential candidate suggested that the gov’t wipe out the existing tuition debt? News story last night said that it would be expensive then they ran a story reporting that our gov’t just blew 1.5T on two fighter jets that are now scrapped.

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 5:04 pm

djbatista wrote:The cost/benefit ratio of going to law school can always be debated, and for some it may not make sense. The bottom line is becoming an attorney offers you the opportunity to achieve great success in America, both in a monetary and social sense. Anyone who refuses to acknowledge this is likely not seeing things clearly, and thinking more from a fear/failure perspective. This is not what successful people do. Why the hell are we doing this if not because we believe it will be beneficial?

Yes, there's debt involved in going to law school. There's debt involved in growing a successful business from the ground up. There's debt involved in purchasing a house (for most people). If you're smart and work hard, chances are you will find success. This goes not just for law but all professions and areas of life.


i am starting to wonder how much TLS really believes the doom and gloom and how much it is meant to further discourage law school enrollment (in order to continue the downward enrollment trend)

i started a thread saying that i would ACTUALLY GET PAID to attend SMU, i had a slight preference for biglaw but specified that any firm job would work. " RETAKE, SIT OUT A YEAR. "

"Don't go until you can get into HYS or t14 w/ $$" (never for many of us)
Last edited by starry eyed on Mon May 18, 2015 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 5:08 pm

LA Spring wrote:
starry eyed wrote:for instance 20k was the 2-10 firm salary in 1985, after adjusting for inflation, it is 46k


Even with a minimal tuition debt, hard to fathom that 20k (9.62 an hour) was an acceptable attorney’s wage. Although 46k today (22.12 an hour) seems even worse given the lofty tuition debt.

Speaking of tuitions. Has any presidential candidate suggested that the gov’t wipe out the existing tuition debt? News story last night said that it would be expensive then they ran a story reporting that our gov’t just blew 1.5T on two fighter jets that are now scrapped.


no 20k back then is the equivalent of 46k in today's dollars (so 8k less than today's small firm wages) -due to inflation

-current 2-10 firm avg is 54k

so in essence you paid 3k in today's tuition for a public law school and you earned 46k at a small firm (in 1985)

likewise, today, you can get a fullride, and make 8k more when you graduate than they did in 1985 (54k as opposed to 46k)

(meaning our situations CAN be better than theirs was)

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby smaug » Mon May 18, 2015 5:19 pm

starry eyed wrote:
djbatista wrote:The cost/benefit ratio of going to law school can always be debated, and for some it may not make sense. The bottom line is becoming an attorney offers you the opportunity to achieve great success in America, both in a monetary and social sense. Anyone who refuses to acknowledge this is likely not seeing things clearly, and thinking more from a fear/failure perspective. This is not what successful people do. Why the hell are we doing this if not because we believe it will be beneficial?

Yes, there's debt involved in going to law school. There's debt involved in growing a successful business from the ground up. There's debt involved in purchasing a house (for most people). If you're smart and work hard, chances are you will find success. This goes not just for law but all professions and areas of life.


i am starting to wonder how much TLS really believes the doom and gloom and how much it is meant to further discourage law school enrollment (in order to continue the downward enrollment trend)

i started a thread saying that i would ACTUALLY GET PAID to attend SMU, i had a slight preference for biglaw but specified that any firm job would work. " RETAKE, SIT OUT A YEAR. "

"Don't go until you can get into HYS or t14 w/ $$" (never for many of us)


What's the upside in me telling you not to go, Starry? We'll never be competing for the same jobs. I'm done with school.

Maybe people tell you not to go because they regret going, or they recognize how lucky they are.

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starry eyed
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 5:21 pm

but what would these ppl be doing with their lives if they didn't go (esp the lucky ones)?

prolly nothing special; why is there so much resentment for a system that allows you to have 3/4 ,1/2 or 1/4 chance at making 160k right out the gate. that is unheard of, and by comparison, a job that pays 60k is looked down as a bad outcome (but if there is no debt, howso?)
Last edited by starry eyed on Mon May 18, 2015 5:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby bjsesq » Mon May 18, 2015 5:22 pm

If I had to do it all over again, I'm beginning to think I probably would have done something else. I was one of those guys who was convinced I wanted to be a lawyer, but I had no clue what I was talking about, and access to loans was far too easy for me to say no to.

starry eyed wrote:but what would these ppl be doing with their lives if they didn't go (esp the lucky ones)?

prolly nothing special; why is there so much resentment for a system that allows you to have 1/2 or 1/4 chance at making 160k right out the gate


Because what happens to the other 20-some thousand people on a yearly basis?

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby starry eyed » Mon May 18, 2015 5:24 pm

bjsesq wrote:If I had to do it all over again, I'm beginning to think I probably would have done something else. I was one of those guys who was convinced I wanted to be a lawyer, but I had no clue what I was talking about, and access to loans was far too easy for me to say no to.

starry eyed wrote:but what would these ppl be doing with their lives if they didn't go (esp the lucky ones)?

prolly nothing special; why is there so much resentment for a system that allows you to have 1/2 or 1/4 chance at making 160k right out the gate


Because what happens to the other 20-some thousand people on a yearly basis?


i don't want anyone to take away from my ranting that it's a good idea to roll the dice by putting yourself into a lot of debt.

IMO, lower T14 at sticker is HUGE gamble that i wouldn't take, bc a 50% shot at biglaw for 200k is absurd.

but these people that didn't make it as lawyers, do you think they would be succesful in other areas?
Last edited by starry eyed on Mon May 18, 2015 5:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby bjsesq » Mon May 18, 2015 5:27 pm

starry eyed wrote:
bjsesq wrote:If I had to do it all over again, I'm beginning to think I probably would have done something else. I was one of those guys who was convinced I wanted to be a lawyer, but I had no clue what I was talking about, and access to loans was far too easy for me to say no to.

starry eyed wrote:but what would these ppl be doing with their lives if they didn't go (esp the lucky ones)?

prolly nothing special; why is there so much resentment for a system that allows you to have 1/2 or 1/4 chance at making 160k right out the gate


Because what happens to the other 20-some thousand people on a yearly basis?


i know. I don't want anyone to take aways from my ranting that it's a good idea to roll the dice by putting yourself into a lot of debt.

IMO, lower T14 at sticker is HUGE gamble that i wouldn't take, bc a 50% shot at biglaw for 200k is absurd

And this is the problem, imo. These schools prey on prospective students' ignorance of the job market and shove obscene amounts of debt down their throats in the process. I didn't really know what that sort of debt meant. I sure as fuck do now.

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby prezidentv8 » Mon May 18, 2015 5:31 pm

OhBoyOhBortles wrote:Being a special snowflake, mostly.


Also hubris.

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smaug
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby smaug » Mon May 18, 2015 5:33 pm

starry eyed wrote:but what would these ppl be doing with their lives if they didn't go (esp the lucky ones)?

prolly nothing special; why is there so much resentment for a system that allows you to have 3/4 ,1/2 or 1/4 chance at making 160k right out the gate. that is unheard of, and by comparison, a job that pays 60k is looked down as a bad outcome (but if there is no debt, howso?)

Because there are very, very few superlative outcomes in law school, and the modal outcome at a good school (Biglaw) isn't that good.

Outcomes that are more defensible/desirable (gubmint work, small law) are rare and ex ante one shouldn't strive for them.

Most of us should have just stuck with the 40-60k job, worked a bit, and then considered an MBA or something.

Or, maybe they should have become doctors.

The only people who should go to law school are those who are already pretty hopeless and know what they're getting into. Before someone (I think it was you, don't remember) was suggesting that people who end up in Biglaw are whiners and that others in the position would be grateful.

I'd posit the opposite is true: about the only people who are capable of functioning in that sort of environment already have pretty negative outlooks, or are so driven that they'd overwork to the point of suffering no matter what they did.

Regardless, "Don't go" has been the general advice on some corners of the Internet since before the great recession. The attrition rate is horrendous for a reason. People want to get out of Biglaw for a reason.

Maybe you're still trolling here (I hope so) but this is one of the few areas where I stay earnest no matter what. Most people who go to law school are making a mistake. That includes students at "top" schools.

I'm excited to start work. I hope that I can last long enough that law school wasn't a massive mistake. But, it might have been. I'm just trying to help others avoid the mistakes I made.

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon May 18, 2015 7:48 pm

djbatista wrote:The bottom line is becoming an attorney offers you the opportunity to achieve great success in America, both in a monetary and social sense. Anyone who refuses to acknowledge this is likely not seeing things clearly, and thinking more from a fear/failure perspective. This is not what successful people do. Why the hell are we doing this if not because we believe it will be beneficial?

How are you defining "great success," especially in a social sense? Law sometimes provides an entree into middle class life. That can be a great step up, but I don't think it's as great a "success" as people like to think it is and I don't get what it has to do with social success.
starry eyed wrote:but these people that didn't make it as lawyers, do you think they would be succesful in other areas?

Sure they would. It's great big huge fucking world. There are lots of different things people can do. Success or failure at one doesn't necessarily imply anything about success or failure in other fields.

Besides, people underestimate how much luck/serendipity plays into career paths and success.

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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon May 18, 2015 8:10 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Besides, people underestimate how much luck/serendipity plays into career paths and success.


This is so true, especially in law.

There are attorneys who, by sheer luck, get staffed on a huge litigation with big-name partners and end up milking it for 25+ years. They make partner and become huge "successes" in the eyes of the world.

Others get staffed on a series of cases that settle and eventually get pushed out of their firms for having no business or skills or both.

I know people who fit both of the above categories.

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LA Spring
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Re: What encourages you to attend law school among all the negativity?

Postby LA Spring » Tue May 19, 2015 1:36 am

I don’t chalk it all up to luck. I suppose it’s possible that Tom Trump Supporter Brady and LeBron James are really lucky or perhaps they are on the first string because they are talented. After 3 months as an SA and 8 months as an associate what I’ve continually seen is that certain people continually receive better assignments. There are first years handling bigger cases than 3rd years, I don’t believe that this is necessarily attributed to luck.




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