49 year old thinking about law school

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trooper10538

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49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sat Dec 10, 2016 4:34 am

I am a 49 year old man, who has 17 years experience as a Texas State Trooper. I'm currently going through the process of retiring due to two back surgeries. I am no longer able to wear all the equipment etc. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice with a Major GPA of 3.90. I haven't taken the LSAT yet. Will my age hurt me during the admissions process? I will be considering University of Texas Law, University of Houston Law, South Texas College of Law and Saint Mary's Law in San Antonio. Thanks for any input. Ed

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby r2d2111 » Sat Dec 10, 2016 7:08 am

trooper10538 wrote:I am a 49 year old man, who has 17 years experience as a Texas State Trooper. I'm currently going through the process of retiring due to two back surgeries. I am no longer able to wear all the equipment etc. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice with a Major GPA of 3.90. I haven't taken the LSAT yet. Will my age hurt me during the admissions process? I will be considering University of Texas Law, University of Houston Law, South Texas College of Law and Saint Mary's Law in San Antonio. Thanks for any input. Ed


You may want to check out these threads:

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=143047

viewtopic.php?t=192567

Law school admissions is basically a numbers game. Just get a good LSAT score.

BobBoblaw

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby BobBoblaw » Sat Dec 10, 2016 8:02 am

In most of the non-discrimination statements, age is usually given protected status, so lets hope law schools aren't breaking the law by discriminating based on age.

That being said, focus on getting a good LSAT. Debt is probably a big consideration for you, and the higher your LSAT the more you will get in terms of scholarships/financial aid.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby mcmand » Sat Dec 10, 2016 10:58 pm

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Last edited by mcmand on Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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zot1

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby zot1 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:07 am

Getting into law at your age sounds like a nightmare to me, but perhaps you'll find joy in it. Get a good LSAT and you'll be in. But please go to a ranked school with a good rep and a giant scholarship.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:27 am

mcmand wrote:
trooper10538 wrote:I am a 49 year old man, who has 17 years experience as a Texas State Trooper. I'm currently going through the process of retiring due to two back surgeries. I am no longer able to wear all the equipment etc. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice with a Major GPA of 3.90. I haven't taken the LSAT yet. Will my age hurt me during the admissions process? I will be considering University of Texas Law, University of Houston Law, South Texas College of Law and Saint Mary's Law in San Antonio. Thanks for any input. Ed


Get as high of an LSAT score as you can, and go to the school that will give you a JD with minimal debt (lots of scholarships + no strings attached to said scholarships (i.e., no minimum GPA required, since law school is curved and people lose their scholarships that way)). The law schools probably won't discriminate against you based on your age, but employers might, since age discrimination is sadly very common everywhere, even in the legal field. Best to have minimal financial exposure in the event that you are hustling to find work. (And that's additional hustling on top of the tough hustling/competition for legal jobs as the market exists now.)

Is there a particular line of work you're trying to get into as a lawyer? Are you wanting to stay in criminal law? Prosecution or defense? Trial work or appellate? If you are sticking to criminal law, you probably have lots of good contacts who can answer these questions better than many of the folks on here. There are a lot of current students or 0Ls who dole out advice (current 3L here). There are grads and lawyers, too, but I see that less frequently. You need information from the people who actually have it, which would be practicing attorneys in Texas.

If you're looking to step away from criminal work and get into something different, start researching now and getting to know lawyers now in the practice areas you're considering. They can give you the scoop on starting law school as a second career, connect you with someone who has done the same, and foster more connections for you in your immediate geographic area.

Reach out to your contacts, and maybe start sending some cold emails to lawyers doing work you're interested in about getting coffee and bending their ear for a little advice on how to succeed as a lawyer in Texas starting a little later in the game than everyone else.

This forum's advice is usually a variation of: take the LSAT, retake the LSAT, get 170+, go to Harvard/Yale/Stanford, and if you don't, you're doomed. It's not very uplifting. It's realistic, but only to a point and only if one's conception of success is quite narrow.



Thanks for info. I want to stay in public service prosecutor (federal, state, county). The schools I listed are within reason for me, as far as, moving etc. What materials would you suggest I obtain for the LSAT? Was thinking about February, but may wait until June. I know classes are available are those worth the money? UT would be my best option because I wouldn't have to move at all, but it will be the most difficult to get into. Appreciate the advice. Ed

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:29 am

zot1 wrote:Getting into law at your age sounds like a nightmare to me, but perhaps you'll find joy in it. Get a good LSAT and you'll be in. But please go to a ranked school with a good rep and a giant scholarship.


Nightmare huh.....I don't mind hard work....Always wants to go to law school just never seemed to work out before. Time to hit the books.

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zot1

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby zot1 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:31 am

trooper10538 wrote:
zot1 wrote:Getting into law at your age sounds like a nightmare to me, but perhaps you'll find joy in it. Get a good LSAT and you'll be in. But please go to a ranked school with a good rep and a giant scholarship.


Nightmare huh.....I don't mind hard work....Always wants to go to law school just never seemed to work out before. Time to hit the books.


It's not about it being hard work. Rather, depending on the job you end up with, it can end up being soul-sucking. I'm not even in such a job, and I still dream of doing something different at your age. But you know, the grass is always greener...

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby UVA2B » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:39 am

trooper10538 wrote:I am a 49 year old man, who has 17 years experience as a Texas State Trooper. I'm currently going through the process of retiring due to two back surgeries. I am no longer able to wear all the equipment etc. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice with a Major GPA of 3.90. I haven't taken the LSAT yet. Will my age hurt me during the admissions process? I will be considering University of Texas Law, University of Houston Law, South Texas College of Law and Saint Mary's Law in San Antonio. Thanks for any input. Ed


Come back with LSAT. Not much else matters until you have that objective factor.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby kalvano » Sun Dec 11, 2016 12:45 am

Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:36 am

kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

I mean, if he's retiring from being a state trooper, he'll have to find something else to do regardless.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby Mcsale02 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:42 am

My view be different from others, but I may have a better understanding of the driving factors behind your decision. If there's nothing stopping you, I say go for it. You are at a point where you have to start a new career, so regardless of what you decide you will be starting from the bottom at a later age -- make it something you think you'll thrive at and enjoy. Study hard and do great on the LSAT. If you can get in to UT with a scholarship I'd say you're golden. I will say that I'm right there with you, so I might be a bit bias. I'll be starting law school at the age of 46, which means I will also be starting a new career late in the game. I am too old for my current career. :wink: However, the GI Bill will be paying for school, so I will graduate with no debt.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby zot1 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:44 am

Mcsale02 wrote:My view be different from others, but I may have a better understanding of the driving factors behind your decision. If there's nothing stopping you, I say go for it. You are at a point where you have to start a new career, so regardless of what you decide you will be starting from the bottom at a later age -- make it something you think you'll thrive at and enjoy. Study hard and do great on the LSAT. If you can get in to UT with a scholarship I'd say you're golden. I will say that I'm right there with you, so I might be a bit bias. I'll be starting law school at the age of 46, which means I will also be starting a new career late in the game. I am too old for my current career. :wink: However, the GI Bill will be paying for school, so I will graduate with no debt.


Yeah but we have our reasons too.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby kalvano » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:48 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

I mean, if he's retiring from being a state trooper, he'll have to find something else to do regardless.


I feel like there has to be other open doors with 17 years as a state trooper that will allow him to put those skills to use (and likely pay more / have a better quality of life). I could be wrong, though.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Dec 11, 2016 2:02 am

kalvano wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

I mean, if he's retiring from being a state trooper, he'll have to find something else to do regardless.


I feel like there has to be other open doors with 17 years as a state trooper that will allow him to put those skills to use (and likely pay more / have a better quality of life). I could be wrong, though.

But maybe he wants to be a lawyer. :D

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby dabigchina » Sun Dec 11, 2016 2:07 am

I'm sure a DA office somewhere would love to have you. Aim for a big scholarship from UT.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby cavalier1138 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 8:18 am

trooper10538 wrote:Thanks for info. I want to stay in public service prosecutor (federal, state, county). The schools I listed are within reason for me, as far as, moving etc. What materials would you suggest I obtain for the LSAT? Was thinking about February, but may wait until June. I know classes are available are those worth the money? UT would be my best option because I wouldn't have to move at all, but it will be the most difficult to get into. Appreciate the advice. Ed


The problem is that the requirements to work as a federal prosecutor are different from working at the state level, which are also different from working at the county level. You should also be aware that most AUSA positions are not open to fresh graduates; they want some experience, usually in biglaw and federal clerkships.

So if you want to work as a federal prosecutor, you'll need to go to UT (or really, a T14 school). If you want to work at the county level, you can probably go to a more local school with a bigger scholarship. But you're in the best position to find this information out for yourself. Talk with the prosecutors in your area at different levels and find out what it takes to get a job at those offices.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby studyingeveryday » Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:30 am

As an 0L, all I'll do is echo what others have said: get a great LSAT score so you can go to a school with minimal debt and not have the burden of debt while job searching. Don't take the LSAT until you're scoring at the range you want to be while studying, and don't feel compelled to take it at a certain date just because you told yourself you would or you already registered (the single piece of advice I wish I knew starting out). Aim for UTexas since you probably don't want to uproot your life at this point. I personally think that if you're already retiring, and you seem to really want to do law, you should go for it. It's not like you're leaving a stable job.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:02 pm

kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.


I'm being forced to retire because of a medical condition I'm not giving up a good career.

trooper10538

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:04 pm

Mcsale02 wrote:My view be different from others, but I may have a better understanding of the driving factors behind your decision. If there's nothing stopping you, I say go for it. You are at a point where you have to start a new career, so regardless of what you decide you will be starting from the bottom at a later age -- make it something you think you'll thrive at and enjoy. Study hard and do great on the LSAT. If you can get in to UT with a scholarship I'd say you're golden. I will say that I'm right there with you, so I might be a bit bias. I'll be starting law school at the age of 46, which means I will also be starting a new career late in the game. I am too old for my current career. :wink: However, the GI Bill will be paying for school, so I will graduate with no debt.


Thanks for input. I will use my Hazelwood (US Marine Corps) here in Texas, so as long as, I go to a public institution tuition will be paid for.

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby kalvano » Sun Dec 11, 2016 3:43 pm

trooper10538 wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.


I'm being forced to retire because of a medical condition I'm not giving up a good career.


Is there something else you can do with your experience, though (sorry, posting later at night doesn't always get to what I meant)?

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby trooper10538 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 4:15 pm

kalvano wrote:
trooper10538 wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.


I'm being forced to retire because of a medical condition I'm not giving up a good career.


Is there something else you can do with your experience, though (sorry, posting later at night doesn't always get to what I meant)?


No problem. Yes I can get a new job as an investigator or something similar. I've thought about law school for along time and find the legal profession fascinating. I believe it could be very rewarding career.

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ManoftheHour

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby ManoftheHour » Sun Dec 11, 2016 5:10 pm

You're in pretty good shape. You have a very good GPA so all you need is a decent LSAT score and UT should be golden. Since you're gonna have tuition paid for, there's even more breathing room on the LSAT.

Good luck!
Last edited by ManoftheHour on Sun Dec 11, 2016 5:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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zot1

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby zot1 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 5:10 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

I mean, if he's retiring from being a state trooper, he'll have to find something else to do regardless.


I feel like there has to be other open doors with 17 years as a state trooper that will allow him to put those skills to use (and likely pay more / have a better quality of life). I could be wrong, though.

But maybe he wants to be a lawyer. :D


:lol:

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kalvano

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Re: 49 year old thinking about law school

Postby kalvano » Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:38 pm

zot1 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
kalvano wrote:Preface: 36 years old, 2013 grad, work in Texas (Dallas), private practice.

Not a thing in the world would make me give up a good career at age 49 to go to law school and take a crapshoot at getting a job. Is there some deep, driving motivation behind this, or is it just something you want to do? You'll take a pay cut (relatively large, I would think) and essentially be starting over at the bottom without 17 years to catch up.

I mean, if he's retiring from being a state trooper, he'll have to find something else to do regardless.


I feel like there has to be other open doors with 17 years as a state trooper that will allow him to put those skills to use (and likely pay more / have a better quality of life). I could be wrong, though.

But maybe he wants to be a lawyer. :D


:lol:


Oh, you.



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