Military Service vs. Criminal Record

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ehall20
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Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby ehall20 » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:04 pm

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Last edited by ehall20 on Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Tom Joad
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby Tom Joad » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:06 pm

Nobody is going to have any hard and fast answers because you are in a rare situation, but if you perform how you think you will at least apply to HYS and see what happens. If I had to guess, the military service would equal out the criminal record in my opinion.

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ehall20
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby ehall20 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:15 am

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Last edited by ehall20 on Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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johnpizzo
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby johnpizzo » Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:49 pm

I also have some C&F issues. Lets just say they are worse than underage drinking. Mine are very old 20+ years ago (I am a much older applicant obviously) so it is a bit different and I also did not apply to HYS so there is that difference as well. What I will say is that the first four schools I heard back from were acceptances with no additional questioning of my past transgressions. Like the previous poster stated, it is largely a gray area with no concrete predetermined outcomes. Some time has past from your issues and I think most people would be somewhat understanding about the battery, not that they would totally excuse it but the underlying emotional nature of it might let them look leniently on it. The underage drinking isn't even an issue, if they ruled applicants with that out there would be tumble weeds in law schools. You do need to explain this in your personal statement and take FULL responsibility for them as well as show how they have changed your life and way of thinking. Whatever you do don't do the old 'well I did it but it really wasn't my fault, blah, blah, blah'.
The only issue I see is that the more prestigious school you apply to the more you will be competing directly against people with similar numbers but without the C&F issues. Hopefully your service will offset some of that.

So the bottom line is nobody really knows, you just have to give it a shot. If you still really want to go to LS and are willing to accept someplace besides HYS then apply to them all but have some backups. Good luck and thank you for your service.

JP

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twenty
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby twenty » Sun Mar 11, 2012 3:29 pm

I highly doubt your C&F issues will "lock you out" of t14, or even law school in general. You're way better off with a 3.9 + old C&F issues that you disclose than a 2.9 with no C&F issues. If you "only" get CCN, you're still way ahead.

Previous1EL
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby Previous1EL » Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:55 pm

I could understand one brush with the law (I think most people could), but someone who has been arrested several times is a poor candidate for the legal profession. I don't care how high their LSAT score is. Also, 18 is a legal adult and I understand crimes you commit at age 18 and over, stay on your record.

Its a huge risk to spend three years in school, to find out later you can't sit for the bar exam.

Find something else to do with your life.

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Tom Joad
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby Tom Joad » Tue Mar 13, 2012 3:37 am

Previous1EL wrote:I could understand one brush with the law (I think most people could), but someone who has been arrested several times is a poor candidate for the legal profession. I don't care how high their LSAT score is. Also, 18 is a legal adult and I understand crimes you commit at age 18 and over, stay on your record.

Its a huge risk to spend three years in school, to find out later you can't sit for the bar exam.

Find something else to do with your life.

Fuck off. Don't troll military vets.

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kerflux
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby kerflux » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:01 am

Tom Joad wrote:
Previous1EL wrote:I could understand one brush with the law (I think most people could), but someone who has been arrested several times is a poor candidate for the legal profession. I don't care how high their LSAT score is. Also, 18 is a legal adult and I understand crimes you commit at age 18 and over, stay on your record.

Its a huge risk to spend three years in school, to find out later you can't sit for the bar exam.

Find something else to do with your life.

Fuck off. Don't troll military vets.

Where do you get off telling someone they're a poor candidate for the legal profession... youthful indiscretions happen. This guy's problem is that he got caught.

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TrojanHopeful
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby TrojanHopeful » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:20 am

ehall20 wrote:I'd like to preface myself by saying that I have used the search function and found several older topics related to criminal records. I didn't want to necro any of those topics, so here is my question:

As a teenager I had 3 offenses on my criminal record: (1) misdemeanor theft @ 16 years old, (2) underage drinking @ 18 years old, and (3) misdemeanor battery @ 18 years old. The circumstances of the battery were that I found out my wife had slept with some guy while I was in basic training and I fought him once I found out about it. Of these offenses, the only one that occurred after I enlisted in the military was the battery charge, which was 5 months after I enlisted.

Four years later, I haven't had any other run-ins with the law and have been enlisted since 2008. I plan on applying to law schools for fall of 2014, so at that point it will have been 5-6 years since my last criminal offense. I read in some of the other threads that law schools look for proof that you have been rehabilitated following any criminal charges. Would my having been enlisted in the military for 6 years prove my rehabilitation? If so, would it be enough of a positive soft to balance out the negatives of my criminal record?

For reference, my undergrad GPA is 3.9 and given how I'm pretesting I'd estimate an LSAT of 175+ (honestly not trying to sound full of myself). My target schools were originally HYS and Chicago, although the more time passes the more I worry that my past stupidity might make this impossible. Is this still a realistic goal, or should I adjust accordingly? I just want to manage my expectations so that I don't end up disappointed.


PMd

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echamberlin8
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby echamberlin8 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:14 pm

I'm curious how much my DUI charge and marijuana possession charges (I was only found guilty of a reckless driving misdemeanor) will affect my chances at law schools. I currently work as a paralegal at a V25 firm, but they did ask me about these during the background check for the job. So I'm assuming it won't pose too much of an issue with law schools. I'm currently working on expunging the marijuana charge from my record, although the state is apparently trying to prevent me from doing so, according to my lawyer.

Villanova3
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby Villanova3 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:37 pm

I have a similar record (but just two incidents), and I was older and thus, closer to applying, when I was arrested.

I got in everywhere my numbers dictated, and it didn't seem to have any effect on me.

Let me know if you need addendum advice, etc.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:58 pm

OP: Three concerns about the liklihood of getting admitted to a Top 18 law school:

1) No LSAT score
2) Your undergraduate business degree was from an online program
3) Three misdemeanor convictions, two of which occurred as an adult & one was a crime of violence. Additionally, these convictions were from separate incidents (as opposed to being intoxicated underage & getting in a fight giving rise to more than one charge from one incident).

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ehall20
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby ehall20 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:44 pm

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Last edited by ehall20 on Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

kakaa001
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby kakaa001 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:49 pm

Tom Joad wrote:
Previous1EL wrote:I could understand one brush with the law (I think most people could), but someone who has been arrested several times is a poor candidate for the legal profession. I don't care how high their LSAT score is. Also, 18 is a legal adult and I understand crimes you commit at age 18 and over, stay on your record.

Its a huge risk to spend three years in school, to find out later you can't sit for the bar exam.

Find something else to do with your life.

Fuck off. Don't troll military vets.


Amen to that.

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stillwater
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby stillwater » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:53 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:OP: Three concerns about the liklihood of getting admitted to a Top 18 law school:

1) No LSAT score
2) Your undergraduate business degree was from an online program
3) Three misdemeanor convictions, two of which occurred as an adult & one was a crime of violence. Additionally, these convictions were from separate incidents (as opposed to being intoxicated underage & getting in a fight giving rise to more than one charge from one incident).


Top 18?

CanadianWolf
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:56 pm

Yes, because they've been consistent over the past few years. I guess that Susan Estrich has finally convinced me that it should be the T-18. :D

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Tom Joad
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby Tom Joad » Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:57 pm

T12

CanadianWolf
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:01 pm

Also, the NLJ250 rankings lead me to think in terms of a T-18. Minnesota, GWU, etc. seem to present a different employment landscape than Vanderbilt, UCLA, Texas & USC.

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stillwater
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby stillwater » Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:03 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:Also, the NLJ250 rankings lead me to think in terms of a T-18. Minnesota, GWU, etc. seem to present a different employment landscape than Vanderbilt, UCLA, Texas & USC.


NLJ isn't that congruent with the USNWR top 18. You have BC poking around the top 18 in the NLJ for instance.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:05 pm

I like BU & BC too. :D So Top 18 plus 2. Any more candidates ?

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abbottsbar
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby abbottsbar » Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:39 pm

OP, not sure how the older transgressions will affect your upcoming cycle. However, if you have an idea about where you want to be after school it might not be a bad idea to either contact the Bar in that state or an attorney in that state who specializes in bar admission and pick their brain about how they may affect your CF evaluation.

Also, thanks for your service.

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ehall20
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby ehall20 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:24 pm

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Last edited by ehall20 on Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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minnbills
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby minnbills » Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:31 pm

OP I really don't think these charges are going to have much if any effect on getting in, and probably C&F as well.

First off, if bar admission is a problem the admissions committee will be the first "barrier" letting you know- they have an interest in not admitting people to their school who won't be able to practice. Regardless, these charges aren't that serious in the grand scheme- I think what they are really looking for are violent crimes (more serious than fighting someone one time) and financial crimes that indicate a dishonest personality- they don't want someone abusing client/firm funds for example.

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LSATsmasher
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby LSATsmasher » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:55 am

Just a heads up,

I don't know exactly how your record will affect your situation. However, I can share some experience. I was never in the military but I committed a serious crime when I was 16. I know, you were 18....I was charged as an adult and I was awarded the great honor of two strikes with two years in a state prison. I was worried about law school and the bar. I spoke with a member of the California Bar Association to see what my chances were. He was not able to give me a definitive answer but did say that when doing a moral character evaluation they look to see what you have done since the crime and that it is "in your favor if it happened prior to law school." That being said, I am planning on taking the June Lsat so I don't know if a school will accept me or not but talking to the head of the CBA seemed to lift up my spirits.

Oh yeah, crime is 10 years old and expunged (most of it).

CanadianWolf
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Re: Military Service vs. Criminal Record

Postby CanadianWolf » Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:46 am

@LSAT smasher: Why stay in a state with a "Three Strikes Law" when you have two strikes ?




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