So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

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MurderafterMidnight
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So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby MurderafterMidnight » Sat Jun 27, 2015 4:26 pm

If you go to a good school and you don't get big law out of the gate are you pretty much out/done for ever getting biglaw?
Is it possible to move from mid law-to big law? What exit options do you usually have from big law? Is it is easy to move from big firm to big firm?
I see big law discussed here alot and just wanted to know.

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White Dwarf
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Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby White Dwarf » Sat Jun 27, 2015 4:32 pm

You could go Fed Gov and lateral in from some departments (SEC, DOJ), but outside of that the opportunities for entry seem pretty slim if you don't get it right out of school.

And I'm sure lateraling isn't a cakewalk either.

xiao_long
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Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 10:38 pm

Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby xiao_long » Sat Jun 27, 2015 5:06 pm

MurderafterMidnight wrote:If you go to a good school and you don't get big law out of the gate are you pretty much out/done for ever getting biglaw?
Is it possible to move from mid law-to big law? What exit options do you usually have from big law? Is it is easy to move from big firm to big firm?
I see big law discussed here alot and just wanted to know.


Do a forum search for "striking out" and you'll find plenty of literature on this topic.

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Aeon
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Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby Aeon » Sun Jun 28, 2015 12:30 am

MurderafterMidnight wrote:If you go to a good school and you don't get big law out of the gate are you pretty much out/done for ever getting biglaw?
Is it possible to move from mid law-to big law? What exit options do you usually have from big law? Is it is easy to move from big firm to big firm?
I see big law discussed here alot and just wanted to know.


As White Dwarf wrote, a frequent route is to lateral from a federal agency to a BigLaw firm.

It is possible to move from a middle market firm to BigLaw, I've seen it done. But it can be an uphill struggle. A lot depends on the needs of the hiring firm, as well as your specialty. If you have a niche practice area, it may make it easier than if you, for example, do general litigation. Similar factors apply to moving from one BigLaw firm to another, though with some nuance. For example, specializing in a niche practice area may limit your options, as there may be only a few firms that focus on it. If the economy is doing well, lateraling from one general corporate practice to another can be easy, since associate roles are fairly interchangeable; but if the economy slows down, you're stuck.

Common exit options from BigLaw are, in no particular order: federal government, other BigLaw firm, in-house counsel, small or middle market firm, returning to hometown to work at local firm.

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El Pollito
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Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby El Pollito » Sun Jun 28, 2015 12:31 am

if you can't get biglaw through oci at a good school, i don't think "just do fedgov" is going to be an option

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FullRamboLSGrad
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Joined: Thu May 07, 2015 6:47 pm

Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby FullRamboLSGrad » Sat Jul 04, 2015 2:02 pm

Have ties and make friends OP.

When I was in a smaller market, another associate in my building (different firm) managed to go from a 4 member law firm to a 150 member law firm with 5 locations by networking and demonstrating his abilities. With that the lost autonomy (the real benefit of small law) but gained a much larger salary for less hours. The real perk of small law is simply that you're essentially building your own practice, which is hard. With the larger firms the schmoozing is done for you.

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LA Spring
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Re: So is big law pretty much a boom or bust proposition?

Postby LA Spring » Sat Jul 04, 2015 2:20 pm

Out of the gate through OCI (or mass mailings) to a Big/Mid law firm is the way it works. If you start out with a -50 attorney firm your chances of lateraling to BL are slim. I have wondered how grads from smaller schools (with no OCI) end up with BL jobs….they do because when I surf V firms they do have grads from tier 2/3 schools, not sure how they get selected. Perhaps being in the top “x” percent of their class is my guess.




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