.

(Please Ask Questions and Answer Questions)
04172016
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2015 9:45 pm

.

Postby 04172016 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 8:57 am

.

User avatar
kalvano
Posts: 11725
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:24 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby kalvano » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:08 am

If you were to trade your current job to go to law school because you want more "intellectual stimulation," I'll be honest, I would assume you had a debilitating accident that caused brain damage.

Read some more books if you want intellectual stimulation.

User avatar
northwood
Posts: 4872
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 7:29 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby northwood » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:27 am

If you really want to go into law, I would at least wait until your pension is guaranteed and you have saved enough money to be able to pay the sticker price of law school + books + living expenses + bar prep expenses without having to take a single dollar out in loans.

120K for 30 hour weeks is amazing. You'll be lucky to get 120K after graduation and if you do, you will not be working only 30 hours a week.


If you want, I would try to teach criminal justice classes instead. No extra cost, and you will be able to intellectually stimulate others. Plus, there may even be an opportunity for you to do some research into an issue/ topic that you find interesting.

User avatar
RCSOB657
Posts: 2276
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 2:50 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby RCSOB657 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:33 am

Are you still doing patrol work? Have you tried to do other things in your department, because you're hitting the wall kind of early. That's a sign that either the work wasn't what you expected or something's wrong. IMO, unless you do amazingly well on your LSAT you should stick with what you're doing. Lateral if you have to, but you still probably need a couple more years to transition higher level cop jobs.

Hutz_and_Goodman
Posts: 1413
Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:42 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby Hutz_and_Goodman » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:53 am

I knew a cop who got two MAs in 5-6 years while still working full time. Why not do that? I actually think law is intellectually stimulating and interesting but the education is usually expensive and you will not be able to work 30 hrs and make $100k.

Also PI law will have less pay than your current job unless you are in the very narrow slice of superstars, in which case yes you will make crazy bank.

User avatar
bretby
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 5:15 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby bretby » Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:17 am

I thought the starting salary for cops was in the 30s-40s. 120k? Yeesh. That being said, I'm a 0L, but from my friends who are in law (BigLaw, FBI, State, plaintiff's attorney), I can say that the level of intellectual stimulation varies greatly depending on the type of law you go into. Also, the law school you go to will have a huge impact on the kinds of opportunities that are available to you after you graduate. What's your LSAT score? And once again, how does a cop with 3 years experience make 120k?

Lawyerrr
Posts: 48
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2015 3:58 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby Lawyerrr » Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:29 am

As for pay, you're going to take a pay cut, at least initially, if you do plaintiff-side personal injury work. My estimate is that an NJ-based firm that does PI would start you somewhere around $60-70k. Some of the major NJ firms would start you around $125 - $140k, but you won't be doing PI there.

That said, personal injury can be the most lucrative field of law, but it all depends on how good you are because you're running on contingency fees. There are some really good, PI trial lawyers who win 8-figure settlements/verdicts every year and make more than partners at top law firms in NYC. But there are way, way more PI lawyers who are just ambulance chasers and are making less than you are now.

Hard to predict how you'll do. But if you really don't like your job and think you'd love law, Rutgers Law may not be a bad option. You have enough saved up where you'll be able to pay for all three years withouttaking out loans. (Obviously if you get into Harvard on a full ride go there but that's another conversation.)

User avatar
lacrossebrother
Top 17 consensus poster
Posts: 6875
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2014 11:15 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby lacrossebrother » Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:32 am

Holy shit. Cops make $120k for 30hrs? Talk about highway robbery!

User avatar
kalvano
Posts: 11725
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:24 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby kalvano » Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:51 am

lacrossebrother wrote:Holy shit. Cops make $120k for 30hrs? Talk about highway robbery!


That includes bribes.

mvp99
Posts: 1384
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:00 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby mvp99 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 11:01 am

Where I live a cop can make around six figures but they do so by working overtime (and they are strategic about it, like taking a task that requires them to do something just before the end of their shift). I would like to know how OP pulls 130k with 30 hours a week.

User avatar
Mack.Hambleton
Posts: 5417
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:09 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby Mack.Hambleton » Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:44 pm

How many tickets do you have to give out to make 120k a year

mvp99
Posts: 1384
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:00 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby mvp99 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:57 pm


Hutz_and_Goodman
Posts: 1413
Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:42 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby Hutz_and_Goodman » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:07 pm

For those wondering how a cop can make $120k per year, you need to watch Bad Lieutenant (starring Harvey Keitel). Great movie.

User avatar
lacrossebrother
Top 17 consensus poster
Posts: 6875
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2014 11:15 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby lacrossebrother » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:11 pm

Do you pay tax on bribes? Why would you post that you make 120k on an Internet forum if that includes bribes

rwhyAn
Posts: 294
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 1:09 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby rwhyAn » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:14 pm

OP, I would not give up that job to go to law school. Ask doc reviewers how intellectually stimulating their careers are. Hell, you might not even like law school, and a cushy gig like that would be dumb to turn down for an unknown. I'm an evening student at Rutgers, and there's a cop in my class. Would you be able to go part-time at night? At least that way you can try it out risk-free without having to sacrifice your current career, and if it turns out you hate law, you're only out a few grand.

User avatar
pancakes3
Posts: 3923
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:49 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby pancakes3 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:37 pm

Can't you gun for detective or something? SWAT? Chief?

I understand being unfulfilled in your job but law school is not the answer. If you're serious about expanding your horizons, you can study for the CPA, CFA, Realtor's license, Pilot's license, SCUBA license, Bartending license, Coursera, coding boot camp, cooking class, painting class, beer brewing, or any one of literally thousands of other learning opportunities that would be at a fraction of what law school would cost in terms of time and money.

25 is awfully young to be having a career identity crisis.

User avatar
lacrossebrother
Top 17 consensus poster
Posts: 6875
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2014 11:15 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby lacrossebrother » Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:47 pm

You get paid more for more arrests? Do you think this is appropriate? What do you think of the nypd slowdown whereby they only made "necessary arrests?" Does this not highlight the absurdity of the criminal justice system especially wrt police-as-revenue sources? Im suprised you make more money than a lot of lawyers, especially per hour --but not sure id be comfortable working for such a fucked institution.

js1663
Posts: 216
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 2:13 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby js1663 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:05 pm

First of all i've never heard of anyone getting paid for arrests/tickets and i'm 99% sure that's illegal and if not definitely should be... but ignoring that for the moment -

With that said, if you're in NJ and currently making $120k working 40 hours a week, if you want to go into law (which I think is a bad idea for you - you'll probably be working double the hours for less pay) - you have two options - either quit LE and go full time to law school (at which point with your GPA any school would be on the table with the right LSAT). Alternatively and what I think is your best option if you want to practice law - see if you can attend Rutgers Law part time - I bet you'd get a full scholarship with a halfway decent (156-160+) LSAT, and you'll be able to maintain your employment during this time. Along with this, once you get the degree you can practice part time while working in law enforcement, or utilize it at that point to try to make the switch either into prosecutors office or private practice. Either way, at least you wont be throwing away your great job until you know what kind of job you'll get and if you want it, and probably the only thing you'll be spending on this would be time.

Also, I have to agree with others here - there are tons of interesting aspects of LE including detective, swat, various rescue or response teams, etc - you should certainly look in house before you look outside for stimulation. Finally, I know of several people in LE who instead of looking 3 years in, begin law school part time when they are 3-4 years from retirement, which allows them to go straight from retirement with a pension to an additional career as a lawyer.
Last edited by js1663 on Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

indo
Posts: 288
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:02 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby indo » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:06 pm

I assume OP means he works 30 hours overtime.

js1663
Posts: 216
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 2:13 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby js1663 » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:11 pm

indo wrote:I assume OP means he works 30 hours overtime.


That would better explain the extremely high salary - usually it takes between 5-9 years to top out...

Though some departments have shift arrangements where officers work 36 hours on most weeks and 48 hours every 3rd week... maybe that's what he's referring to? 30 hours obviously wouldn't make sense.

User avatar
DKM
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2013 11:09 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby DKM » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:30 pm

Am I the only one having trouble believing a cop 3 years out of school is making 120k working 30 hours a week?

User avatar
Helioze
Posts: 190
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2014 5:10 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby Helioze » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:32 pm

All anyone in this thread cares about is the $$$

User avatar
baal hadad
Posts: 3168
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:57 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby baal hadad » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:37 pm

Your union must be really good to be bilking the taxpayers for so much $

User avatar
sublime
Posts: 15418
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:21 pm

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby sublime » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:45 pm

..

User avatar
runinthefront
Posts: 1105
Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2014 2:18 am

Re: From cop to lawyer?

Postby runinthefront » Sun Mar 15, 2015 2:53 pm

DKM wrote:Am I the only one having trouble believing a cop 3 years out of school is making 120k working 30 hours a week?


I mean it's pretty surprising and we're probably misconstruing OP's words

but idk with the state of police unions nowadays it wouldn't exactly shock me




Return to “Law School FAQ”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests