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Law Schools - Where and Why?

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by El Argentino, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    No, they are not "located in only a handful of cities." The vast majority of Vault 50 firms may be based in New York City, Washington DC, Chicago and Los Angeles, but they each have offices all over the country, as well as around the world. Also, you could probably extend the scenario to the Vault 100 with the same results.
     
  2. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    And where does the NY based firm have its offices? The handful of other cities like Chicago, LA, DC, San Fran, Boston, London, etc.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2012
  3. mafoofan

    mafoofan Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Also, cities like Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Seattle, etc.

    The point is that you can easily avoid paying for NYC cost-of-living and work in BigLaw. Only DC and San Francisco approach NYC in expense. Places like Boston and Chicago are leagues cheaper.
     
  4. randomkoreandude

    randomkoreandude Senior member

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    ill be at a vault top 75 and start at 145 for DC office
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. marg

    marg Senior member

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    FYI, there are still biglaw jobs and solid regional jobs being had by t3 and t4 in non NYC markets. This elitist bullshit is nonsense. It may be harder to get a job in a lower school, especially for socially awkward people, but it's not the death nail. Also, just like in finance, there are plenty of top-school trained people that are completely worthless outside the classroom (these are probably your profs).

    The main benefit to a higher-ranked school is that people won't initially question your ability, but I would put my ability up against any other law students. Get on law review, keep your grades up, and network with everyone you can. Finding a job will be on the candidate instead of career services.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. El Argentino

    El Argentino Senior member

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    The more I study it out, this is the conclusion I come to.
     
  7. nayr1982

    nayr1982 Well-Known Member

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    Have to agree with Moo. Having worked in "biglaw" it does matter. Our clients and the interactions we had with them led to exit oppertunities that you just don't have as an attorney in a smaller regional firm. Further, Moo's idea of biglaw is different than sns23's. I think moo's idea of what firms are "biglaw" is probably more in line with reality, there are certainly less than 50 truly prestigious big firms.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. odoreater

    odoreater Senior member

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    Can you elaborate on this? What makes one case a higher "quality" from another case, and why do you think that you are more likely to get higher quality cases at a big law firm?
     
  9. randomkoreandude

    randomkoreandude Senior member

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    clients ... fortune 500 go to the best firms. even amongst the top firms, certain ones are known for particular fields

    for example - hostile takeovers, m&a, leveraged buyouts of large global comps typically go for skadden and wachtell
     
  10. golfnutter66

    golfnutter66 Well-Known Member

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    I am a lawyer in Canada.

    We dont make the money you guys do south of the border.

    Anyway, I occassionally get the eager beaver college kid asking me about the practice of law and law school.

    I tell them if they just want to make a lot of money (nothing wrong with that aim), they would be better off getting an MBA from an ivy league school and head to Wall Street.

    What no one appreciates until they are in it, is the sheer huge hours that have to be logged at the office and of course billed. No one, also, understands that while you may spend 14 hours at the office, you may bill much less to client files. The constant pressure to bill can get to some people.

    Had to do it again, I would have done the MBA . . . and headed into M&A or investment banking (I know it is not a bed of roses either, but the money is better).
     
  11. Kai

    Kai Senior member

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    "death nail" ?
     
  12. deaddog

    deaddog Senior member

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    I think this is a pretty good assessment but don't forget that lawyers tend to be risk averse. Historically, biglaw provided much more security than did investment banking. The crash of 2008 altered that dynamic a bit but I still think the odds of losing your job in biglaw are lower than losing your job at, for example, Goldman.

    As to the other points raised in the thread, if you don't go T14 and graduate in top 50%, your odds of biglaw today are very small. Lots of kids in the bottom half of Northwestern and Georgetown scrambling for jobs that pay enough to make a dent in the loans. If you go below T14 but still decent (for example, Vandy or Illinois), you better be top 5 (people, not percent). There are exceptions to every rule but I wouldn't gamble $200K in loans on it. For the guy saying top 100 is ok, I hope you have a parent with a booming PI practice who can take you in after graduation. Remember those loans are no longer dischargeable in BK.
     
  13. sns23

    sns23 Senior member

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    I actually got paid to go to law school. Full ride plus regular paychecks for the two years of being a teaching assistant. Seven years of school, zero loans, zero debt.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
  14. Kid Nickels

    Kid Nickels Senior member

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    yes we know... you told us before. And I asked "at what school?" if you don't mind my asking?
     
  15. mexicutioner

    mexicutioner Senior member

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    only three sensible choices:

    • don't go to law school
    • T14 (or UCLA/UTAustin if you plan on practicing in LA or Austin respectively) and then work your ass off to be in the top X percentile needed to get an actual job as an attorney (percentile varies by school) + you drop out IMMEDIATELY first semester (or any semester, for that matter) if you aren't in that percentile
    • full ride scholarship at a lower-ranked school + you plan on practicing in that city + you drop out IMMEDIATELY if you lose your scholarship money due to low grades. even better if you go to law school at night and keep working your FT job to avoid racking up loans for living expenses
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
    1 person likes this.
  16. randomkoreandude

    randomkoreandude Senior member

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    very good summary
     
  17. marg

    marg Senior member

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    the death nail is on a financial chart when the company basically goes almost vertically straight down with corresponding volume spike straight up. no coming back from that.

    i work full time while going to school. no loans, and I can still save every paycheck while forking over the cash for too many shell aldens.
     
    1 person likes this.
  18. Kai

    Kai Senior member

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    Death knell.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_knell
     
  19. GreenFrog

    GreenFrog Senior member

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    Is it bad that when I meet people who say they're in law school, I immediately feel sorry for them and then think they're stupid (esp. when they aren't at a top law school)?

    I mean, I don't know jack shit about law, but at least I know that the job market for law school is SHIT. How come these kids don't know?

    I have friends who definitely weren't in the top X% in college, and are currently at mediocre law schools and probably aren't the top X% there either. I just can't help but think how reckless it was for them to decide that they should decide to go to law school with massive debt and even hope to make the big bucks without a huge stroke of luck.

    :facepalm:


    How good is Northeastern law school?
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
  20. skitlets

    skitlets Senior member

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    From my research, the law market is bleak but not as terrible as most make it out to be. IE not only top 5% get good jobs from T50 schools.

    Before the crash, about 1/3 of the students at Hastings were getting good jobs via OCI. It certainly has dropped but down to about 15. (Those numbers could be wrong, I got them from other Hastings students.)
     

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