Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

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CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:06 am

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areyouinsane
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby areyouinsane » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:10 am

When my father was in college in the early 1960s, most profs earned very modest incomes- some of them even lived in student-housing type bed & board places. University buildings were mostly old (pre-1900) and had only the basics: a blackboard, desks, and usually a pretty nice library.

Now profs earn north of 200 K a year (and many much, much more), universities went on a building binge making sure every school has dorms like a 5 star hotel and luxury classrooms, multi-million dollar sports arenas, etc. Meanwhile the overall quality of education had plunged.

None of this would have been possible without government interference re: student loan cash. The American taxpayers have bought into another wealth transfer which is contrary to their own interests. Hell, deans of ABA law schools earn north of 400 K a year, and even that isn't enough for these pigs:

http://www.jdjournal.com/2010/02/23/uni ... rmer-dean/


A simple solution would be strict professor and admin salary caps at any school which particpates in the Federal student loan program.

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NYC Law
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby NYC Law » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:11 am

hirschas wrote:No, the LLM and SJD both require a primary law degree, the JD does not. For non-LLB UGs, there only options for getting into law would be to (i) go back to UG and do a LLB or (ii) get a JD.


Why the JD though? Pretend it's any other field... say I majored in economics but later decide I want to be an Engineer - my options are to either go back to UG or attempt to get straight into a Masters/Doctoral program (the LLM/SJD) in Engineering. There wouldn't be a need for some other random useless degree floating around that a marginal amount of people would even need.

CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:13 am

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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:14 am

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CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:19 am

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NYC Law
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby NYC Law » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:19 am

hirschas wrote:Maybe, California and Florida have huge populations and massive economies. People with estates die everyday, as do drunk people get behind the wheel when they shouldn't. There probably is a need for all those lawyers, otherwise the schools would shut down. Even if the ABA accreditation standards are too lax, that should not in itself lead to a glut of law schools, because only so many law schools should exist as there students willing to pay tuition for their programs. I would be more worried about standards being to strict (I'm not saying they are, just talking theoretically), because that leads to shortage, and thus higher prices for consumers. Ideally, the standards should not aim to limit or grow the quantity of law schools, but rather just establish basic criteria which a institution must meet if it is too be accredited. Let the market decide how many law schools and of what quality.


lol no, not at all.
For a clearer picture - there are 30,000 lawyer jobs a year and 45,000 law school grads a year. Yes, we have too many lawyers.
The main culprits IMO are FL and CA (but that can be said for most of the nations problems).

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Blessedassurance
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby Blessedassurance » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:20 am

hirschas wrote:I don't get it, are you being sarcastic or serious, no offense. If there is a shortage, the package should be better. Did you mean to say there is a surplus?


He's being sarcastic but serious. Yes he means there is a surplus; a surplus so great that people can afford the audacity to employ hiring tactics associated with selling Kirby vacuum cleaners door-to-door or those fancy kitchen knives.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby vanwinkle » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:25 am

hirschas wrote:Yeah, pretty much right, and it all sounds good. I don't agree that the JD would die though. There will still be non-LLB UG grads who find they want to be lawyers after graduation, and the JD will provide them that option. I think it would actually be a decent size market. That is what they have in England - it is not called a JD, but it is a post-UG degree that lets one become a lawyer (one of the junior associates in our office followed this route, no he is a BigLaw associate). Another example, Hong Kong and Singapore, maybe Australia too, are beginning to offer JDs in addition to the LLB, which they probably wouldn't do if the relevant market did not exist. So, even in a post-LLB world, the JD could still survive.

I didn't say the JD would die, just that many JD-granting programs would. The JD would remain, mostly at T1 schools that continued to place well into the high-end job market. BigLaw would probably still want people with JDs, especially ones from the storied Ivy schools and the prominent state programs. You'd essentially preserve the T14 (and a good but random chunk of T1/T2 schools) while killing everything else and replace it with LLBs, in such a gradually-evolving system.

The JD market would remain, and it would likely remain as the gateway to high-end legal careers. The LLB schools would offer cheaper degrees, but at the expense of bring truly considered second-class and locking you out of parts of the job market entirely.

In the end all you've done is made it somewhat cheaper for folks at lower-tier schools to get a law degree, but in doing so you've created a two-tier hiring economy that even further reduces the chances of those people getting upper-end jobs. I suppose the transparency would be a good thing, but the cost of this plan is that you know going in you're not going to be making much money as a lawyer if you get an LLB. It doesn't give you the cheaper/faster access to big money you were originally extolling. It does the opposite.

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bk1
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby bk1 » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:27 am

hirschas wrote:Maybe, California and Florida have huge populations and massive economies. People with estates die everyday, as do drunk people get behind the wheel when they shouldn't. There probably is a need for all those lawyers, otherwise the schools would shut down. Even if the ABA accreditation standards are too lax, that should not in itself lead to a glut of law schools, because only so many law schools should exist as there students willing to pay tuition for their programs.


notsureifsrs.jpeg

CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:27 am

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athenian
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby athenian » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:28 am

Let's look at the consumers, shall we? Law firms are a major consumer. Do you really think that law firms are going to choose an LLB candidate over a candidate with a Bachelor's degree AND graduate level specialization? Law firms currently discriminate between J.D's based on the reputation the law schools that granted them. You'd have to logically assume that they'd provide the same level of scrutiny when comparing an LLB to a J.D. and that, more often than not, the J.D. would win.

The law firm's clients are consumers as well. Who do they want handling their case? The LLB or the J.D.? I'm not saying that everyone with a J.D. would be smarter than anyone with an LLB, but the impression of a JD being superior would certainly be created, especially in the minds of the layperson.

This country has already seen competition between the LLB and the J.D. People (both consumers and legal practitioners) preffered the J.D. over the LLB.

Barriers to entry attempt to maintain a certain level of quality among practitioners. The barriers to entry in the medical profession are an attempt to safeguard against some quack just waltzing in and performing open heart surgery. While the ABA does a less than stellar job at weeding out the quacks and nincompoops when compared to the AMA. It still attempts to create a sense that lawyers all have a certain base level of professional quality.

These barriers may drive up costs, but they also create faith in the system. Because lawyers or doctors must obtain some level of advanced professional training, people can feel safe in entrusting their lives and personal well-being to these people.

Doing away with these barriers when there is already a surplus of lawyers will flood the market and it may lead to a decrease in the cost of legal services, but it won't lead to an increase in access to justice. If I am involved in a legal matter (divorce, will, DUI), I'd rather pay more for an attorney that knows what he's doing than hiring Lionel Hutz for $20/hr.

Again, I'm sure one could get a solid legal education by focusing on it for four years as an undergrad. I'm also sure that one could get a solid foundation of medical knowledge if that's all they were to study in college. I also know that one could simply slack off for four years and not really learn anything, yet graduate with a degree nonetheless. I'd much rather have barriers to entry in professions like medicine and law.

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Blessedassurance
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby Blessedassurance » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:31 am

hirschas wrote: There probably is a need for all those lawyers, otherwise the schools would shut down. Even if the ABA accreditation standards are too lax, that should not in itself lead to a glut of law schools.


20-something year old's continue to enroll and pay the tuition because they do not have enough information about the market to make rational decisions and even when presented with the facts, most think they are going to be "that guy". Schools are producing huge swaths of students who graduate with crippling debt and no jobs. They are not going to shut themselves down because their graduates cannot find jobs. If you sold a shitty product which consistently failed to perform as expected and people kept buying it, would you stop selling it?

CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:37 am

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kazu
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby kazu » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:43 am

vanwinkle wrote:I didn't say the JD would die, just that many JD-granting programs would. The JD would remain, mostly at T1 schools that continued to place well into the high-end job market. BigLaw would probably still want people with JDs, especially ones from the storied Ivy schools and the prominent state programs. You'd essentially preserve the T14 (and a good but random chunk of T1/T2 schools) while killing everything else and replace it with LLBs, in such a gradually-evolving system.

The JD market would remain, and it would likely remain as the gateway to high-end legal careers. The LLB schools would offer cheaper degrees, but at the expense of bring truly considered second-class and locking you out of parts of the job market entirely.

In the end all you've done is made it somewhat cheaper for folks at lower-tier schools to get a law degree, but in doing so you've created a two-tier hiring economy that even further reduces the chances of those people getting upper-end jobs. I suppose the transparency would be a good thing, but the cost of this plan is that you know going in you're not going to be making much money as a lawyer if you get an LLB. It doesn't give you the cheaper/faster access to big money you were originally extolling. It does the opposite.

This, especially the bolded.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby vanwinkle » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:46 am

athenian wrote:Let's look at the consumers, shall we? Law firms are a major consumer. Do you really think that law firms are going to choose an LLB candidate over a candidate with a Bachelor's degree AND graduate level specialization? Law firms currently discriminate between J.D's based on the reputation the law schools that granted them. You'd have to logically assume that they'd provide the same level of scrutiny when comparing an LLB to a J.D. and that, more often than not, the J.D. would win.

The law firm's clients are consumers as well. Who do they want handling their case? The LLB or the J.D.? I'm not saying that everyone with a J.D. would be smarter than anyone with an LLB, but the impression of a JD being superior would certainly be created, especially in the minds of the layperson.

This. Not only that, but high-end firms and government employers are now giving preference to people with work experience between UG and LS. They want older, more experienced people, not some 22-year-old who just got their bachelor's degree. The notion that a large supply of people with LLBs would suddenly mean easier access to high-paying jobs is ludicrous. The hiring market is not just resisting such change, it's clearly going the opposite direction.

A law degree really is pretty much the same anywhere; you get practically the same education no matter where you go. What differentiates the value of degrees is the prestige, and what differentiates different job seekers from the same school is often their pre-JD credentials. It's a screening process. The more responsible work you've done in the real world, the more competitive it was to get accepted to your law school, then the more you've proven yourself amongst a sea of JD-holders.

That's how the legal market works. They value those credentials for their value screening applicants, and having a law degree as a graduate degree allows people to learn other things and work and mature before trying to start a legal career. Making it easier and cheaper to get a law degree means you end up with an LLB that screams, I'm young and inexperienced and have never worked in the real world!

CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:59 am

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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:00 pm

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vanwinkle
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby vanwinkle » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:04 pm

hirschas wrote:As for the JD, it is really just a quantitative barrier to entry, it has nothing to do with quality directly. In terms of quality, the LLB should attain the same outcome. After all, they materially identical, it is just that one comes after a irrelevant BA/BS, while the other does not.

This is just laughably stupid.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby vanwinkle » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:06 pm

hirschas wrote:So what does is the 20-year old who realizes this supposed to do?

Not go to law school.

CaveatLector
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:06 pm

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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:08 pm

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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:13 pm

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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby CaveatLector » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:16 pm

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athenian
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Re: Become American Lawyer Without JD or LSAT!!!

Postby athenian » Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:23 pm

hirschas wrote:
athenian wrote:Let's look at the consumers, shall we? Law firms are a major consumer. Do you really think that law firms are going to choose an LLB candidate over a candidate with a Bachelor's degree AND graduate level specialization? Law firms currently discriminate between J.D's based on the reputation the law schools that granted them. You'd have to logically assume that they'd provide the same level of scrutiny when comparing an LLB to a J.D. and that, more often than not, the J.D. would win.

The law firm's clients are consumers as well. Who do they want handling their case? The LLB or the J.D.? I'm not saying that everyone with a J.D. would be smarter than anyone with an LLB, but the impression of a JD being superior would certainly be created, especially in the minds of the layperson.

This country has already seen competition between the LLB and the J.D. People (both consumers and legal practitioners) preffered the J.D. over the LLB.

Barriers to entry attempt to maintain a certain level of quality among practitioners. The barriers to entry in the medical profession are an attempt to safeguard against some quack just waltzing in and performing open heart surgery. While the ABA does a less than stellar job at weeding out the quacks and nincompoops when compared to the AMA. It still attempts to create a sense that lawyers all have a certain base level of professional quality.

These barriers may drive up costs, but they also create faith in the system. Because lawyers or doctors must obtain some level of advanced professional training, people can feel safe in entrusting their lives and personal well-being to these people.

Doing away with these barriers when there is already a surplus of lawyers will flood the market and it may lead to a decrease in the cost of legal services, but it won't lead to an increase in access to justice. If I am involved in a legal matter (divorce, will, DUI), I'd rather pay more for an attorney that knows what he's doing than hiring Lionel Hutz for $20/hr.

Again, I'm sure one could get a solid legal education by focusing on it for four years as an undergrad. I'm also sure that one could get a solid foundation of medical knowledge if that's all they were to study in college. I also know that one could simply slack off for four years and not really learn anything, yet graduate with a degree nonetheless. I'd much rather have barriers to entry in professions like medicine and law.


You view barriers to entry from a quantity perspective, while I view it from a quality perspective. You say, limit the quantity of professionals, therein increasing quality. However, the result of doing that is keeping out a lot of otherwise qualified professionals, therein increasing prices, decreasing competition, and possibly decreasing quality. May view is, just set a basic standard of quality, if people pass it, then they can practice. The market will end up determining how many people get jobs and at what salary. If the salary for a qualified injury lawyer comes down to 20/hr, well then that is a good deal for the poor guy who just got injured, right?

As for the JD, it is really just a quantitative barrier to entry, it has nothing to do with quality directly. In terms of quality, the LLB should attain the same outcome. After all, they materially identical, it is just that one comes after a irrelevant BA/BS, while the other does not. If you really want to increase quality, and do it in a way that is efficient for professionals and clients, the answer to to institute the LLB + 2 year apprenticeship system; exactly that same as US CPAs go through.


I believe you have it backwards. You seem to be viewing barriers from the quantity perspective. If I've read you correctly, you're argument is that increasing the quantity will promote more competition, thereby increasing quality through this idealized notion of the free market.

In actuality, there is already a surplus of lawyers. Meaning that your increased supply will likely have zero impact on quality. You can't increase competition when the demand is already being satisfied. In addition, you're flooding the market with individuals that will be viewed by consumers as less qualified than their JD holding counterparts. Even if you can somehow generate competition in a system sans excess demand, the LLB's will be at a competitive disadvantage. This will ultimately lead to them sitting unemployed unless they decide to pursue an alternate field of labor (something that they could have prepared for by majoring in something else as an undergrad) or pursuing a JD.

I view barriers from a quality perspective. There are no caps on the number of people that can pursue a JD or take the bar exam (hence the surplus of lawyers). However, those who do eventually practice should all be seen as having maintained some level of professional quality. This creates faith. An economic system relys on trust. By having some barriers to entry, you can assure consumers that the product they're getting meets a standard of quality. Lawyers can have a major impact on the lives and well being of their clients. You don't want to entrust that respinsibilty to just anyone.




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