Law School Discussion

Law Students => Online Law Schools => Topic started by: sekagirl on March 31, 2009, 07:18:33 PM

Title: taft law school
Post by: sekagirl on March 31, 2009, 07:18:33 PM
I am in florida. I have done research on the various distance law schools. Does any body have any experience with taft law school? any suggestions?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Netopalis on March 31, 2009, 07:57:38 PM
Taft is not accredited - avoid it like the plague.  In fact, the ABA does not accredit any distance learning programs...
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: externalaw on March 31, 2009, 08:38:53 PM
We run a site specifically for your situation, have a look www.externalaw.com
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: just Trev on March 31, 2009, 10:05:55 PM
all i did was read the subject of this thread,

so interpret my response based on that...

here goes:

"no."
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: befco on April 10, 2009, 01:32:37 PM
From what I've read a law degree online simply does not allow you to take a bar exam.
So if you just want to put "JD" on your stationary, go for it.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: seliot on April 27, 2009, 10:22:17 PM
Taft graduates are able to take the California Bar, and become fully registered CA attorneys.  I'm in my 2nd year at Taft, and it's pretty decent.  If you want to become a California attorney, and don't have the time or money for regular law school, it is a good option.

The only drawback is that to become an attorney, California makes you take a "Baby Bar" after the first year.  The pass rate is only about 20%.  So this is how California weeds out the non-accredited law school students.  The "Baby Bar" is a subset of the regular bar, but only covers Torts, Contracts, and Criminal law.  If you pass the "Baby Bar" (actual name "FYLSE"), then about 70% of the 4-year graduates ultimately pass the regular bar. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Ninja1 on April 28, 2009, 03:06:24 AM
You live in Florida. Counting the coming of Ave Maria, there are 11 different schools in Florida of various calibers all over the place. There's no reason you can't go to a real law school in Florida.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: softsculptor on April 06, 2011, 02:11:27 AM
Yeah, but how much do those FL law schools cost? I think money is a big reason someone might want to go to an online school. At $7,920.00 per year, it's affordable. Not to mention the fact that one can do it while working or while abroad.
 
Ok, I did some research on this. I hope it clears up the accreditation question.

Taft Law School is accredited through the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council. This is the national accrediting body that accredits distance learning schools, allowing them to legally bestow degrees to their students. This accreditation body is 100% legitimate and recognized by the U.S. government. If you go to FAFSA.org, and type in "Taft" you will see "Taft University System" (of which Taft Law School is a part) show up. This is evidence that it is a legitimate, accredited school. It also means you are eligible for Federal Student Loans to take courses with them (and most of the distance learning law schools do not have that option).

Taft Law School, along with any online Law program is not ABA accredited. That's correct. The ABA doesn't recognize online law schools. I suspect the reason for this is that it is because it is run by lawyers, and they want to keep up the mystique and privilege about becoming an attorney.  ABA accreditation, however, has no substantial purpose other than allowing a student to sit the bar exam. It is a prerequisite to sit the bar in most states - expect in California. California (gotta love it) doesn't require ABA accreditation to sit the bar.

Thus, theoretically, you attend a non-ABA accredited school, get a J.D., and still be admitted to the bar in California...but just because it is not ABA-accredited, does not mean that it is not accredited. It IS an accredited school in the eyes of the U.S. government.

Hope that helped!

If you want more info, then the most helpful article I've read are these:

http://www.elearners.com/guide/online-colleges-universities-and-schools/regional-accreditation-vs-national-accreditation/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Bar_Association
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: calgal27 on April 17, 2011, 07:16:49 PM
I actually tried Taft.  I am in Georgia and there are only 5 law schools in the state and only 2 of them have evening programs.  Didn't get into either.

So... I tried Taft.  Terrible!  When I would brief a case and get a 3/4 on it, I would want to know what went wrong.  That is only 75%.  I would get some canned answer as if the teacher was responding without even knowing who I was or what I wrote.

I have 20 years in the legal profession, an Associates in Paralegal, Bachelor in Business and a Masters in Law & Public Policy.  I am not dumb.

I just didn't think it was worth it and would not recommend online law school to anyone.

I am now looking at Birmingham School of Law in Alabama.  They have a weekend program and Birmingham is about 2.5 hours from Atlanta.  It is actually feesible to go there on the weekend.  They are not ABA approved, but that is not a concern for me.  I I am 45.  I am not going to start some big law career when and if I graduate law school
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: ipscientific on January 18, 2012, 01:55:39 AM
I disagree with the negative comments about Taft Law School. I currently attend and love it.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Opie58 on January 18, 2012, 07:50:12 AM
I disagree with the negative comments about Taft Law School. I currently attend and love it.

Are you doing their structured or independent format?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: ipscientific on January 18, 2012, 01:26:18 PM
I'm doing the JDAT. All of their programs are structured. In my program I interact with my classmates on discussion boards. My classmates are from all over the country. It seems like most of my classmates have their Masters. There are a couple PHDs. I myself have 2 Masters. But I literally just started Jan 2 and I am very happy with everything that I have learned so far in this small amount of time.

They provide many resources and the website the students use is state of the art. This is coming from someone that has worked on large government and fortune 50 websites. There are videos, study resources, ebooks, and your courses content.

As far as practicing law, my background is in design, web development and information systems security and I plan on getting into Intellectual Property.

The 2 instructors that I've had so far, 1 is an attorney and the other has their JD. They are active on the discussion board and post great insightful and useful information a couple days a week. They answer many student questions.

As far as the law, you have to study the law and cases to learn it. This is what I'm learning. I used to think you looked up a law and you do a couple more things and that's that. I was way wrong and there is so much more to it. Our legal system is like no other and it's beautiful thing. But I have been reading a lot. I really enjoy it and would recommend it to anyone.

A lot of people say that a Non ABA degree isn't worth it but I disagree. You can practice in California or Wisconsin and most states you can apply for a waiver. As far as biglaw jobs...I'm not interested. I think a more strategic opportunity would be to start your own company. I'm fortunate to already have a sports doctor as a web client and since letting him know that I started law school I have been assisting him with his patents.

I was also able to get financial aid which is great and I included my trip to take the baby bar in my aid so that is covered. It also covers books. I think it is a perfect fit for what I am trying to do and that is to continue to work for myself and have knowledge of the law to protect me in my efforts. I mean if you have a skill and just the JD and ambition, the possibilities are endless. Go for it. Trust your gut.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Opie58 on January 18, 2012, 03:04:01 PM
Structured was a bad word choice; I meant telecommunication or independant, I suspect you're doing it telecom.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: ipscientific on January 30, 2012, 06:39:06 PM
Structured was a bad word choice; I meant telecommunication or independant, I suspect you're doing it telecom.

Hey!

I'm doing Telecommunications. I started in January and just finished intro to law. I learned how to brief a case, learned a lot of new words: shepardize, stare decisis, statutes, burden of proof, et cetera. The classes change throughout the year and it is organized in weeks. Last week was intro to law and legal writing. This week and next week is Torts. Then the following is I believe contracts.

I like it. If you have an interest in law and hold a Bachelors degree, go for it.

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: jjohnny51 on April 02, 2013, 07:23:42 AM


Yes I have experience with Taft Law School formerly Witkin School of Law at Taft University.  As you know, the ABA does not accredit any online law school, but in the state of California where Taft Law School is located, if one passes the "Baby Bar" after the first year, you can continue on to the second and third years and eventually sit for the California Bar Exam.  I found the school to be terrific, but that the posting regulations to be a bit misconstrued.  If you miss nine posts in a 48 week period you are out!  They go out of their way to work with you and have some very outstanding lawyers that work with you.  The schedule is intense and you move around quite a bit between sections (Contracts, Torts, of course the introduction which is quite easy, Essays, and Criminal Law the first year)  Whatever you do - don't get sick or have any personal problems in your life because it will affect your standing at the school.  It happened to me.  I had a heart attack and was told that I could take whatever time I needed to complete the courses to take the  mid-terms, but the administration and the professors are not on the same page.  I was late on several assignments and could have caught up, but a few professors would not cooperate.  Some are outright nasty.  I attempted to withdraw based on medical reasons and was convinced to stay on and take the time i needed. I had several problems logging on and did not get response for Charles Torres and was dismissed because they said I missed the nine posts.  The people are actually quite wonderful; especially on the admin side.  The Dean even teaches some of the courses.  I thought this was my dream school and it all fell apart.  They kept a good portion of the money even though I did not get to the mid-terms which is when you get any refunds due you.  It was easy to get financial aide, but I also learned that anyone in the state of California an sit for the Baby Bar, pass it, and sit for the bar without going to any law school.  I think it is why they wanted me not to withdraw, so they could keep the money.  In all fairness, I first started before they had the blackboard and actually like it better, but after the switch things changed.  Their accreditation is real or you would no be able to get financial aide.  That is the main key to knowing if a school is accredited.  If the school accepts financial aide (FAFSA and government guaranteed student loans, they are legit), and just because the ABA has not yet come around to accrediting the top online schools does not dismiss the fact that the school is a very good law school.  However, it is 48 weeks straight with no breaks ever accept to study for the baby bar and the school lets you come there and study with the attorneys on staff and they have monthly discussions on specific topics.  There have been many students that have gone on to practice law, and from what I understand they are now accredited in Colorado as well.  It is tough going through 48 non stop weeks.  Everyone needs a break from time to time.  In fact, I am thinking about having a serious discussion about why I was dismissed and the promise made to me, that I have in an email and seeing if I can get back in.  I spent several thousand dollars on books and that really bothers me.  Also, once you have practiced law in California for whatever the number of years is, you can sit for the bar in another state, and you can also petition any state after completion of the program to sit for the bar in that state.  No guarantees, but it has been done.  I think I got caught posting in the lounge and they did not count toward my regular posts.  One good thing is you can call or email any time and they get back to you right away and do work with you.  Like any college you have to follow rules and file certain papers to get access to Lexus Nexis, be accepted to take the bar, apply for the baby bar, and try to get into a group that is serious about studying.  You have to figure on at least 20 hours a week reading, writing essays, posts, and going over the material.  I was not able to get into a group and it was much harder on me.  I have Taft Law School shirts, and a hat, coffee mug - all of which I was proud of.  It was great to say I was a true law student and all my family live in California.  If you are thinking about a law school that is affordable and willing to put in the time - Taft is great, but you have to stay on top of your game.  The Professors do post the answers to the weekly assignments which take a good amount of time.  The amount of reading is intense, but it would be in a regular brick and mortar school as well.  I recommend Taft Law school if you can put in the time.  Where else are you going to be able to go to law school for 6000.00 per year and eventually sit for the bar exam in California.  You can also just get your JD or LLM.  If you don't want to take the bar but have a Juris Doctorate, you can do that too.  Again, I love the people in the admin departments, but some of the profs were not reasonable as I am sure they have heard many excuses in the past.  The first time I withdrew they did not charge me to return and start over.   I did pay the second time and thought it to be quite reasonable.  Your credit is not an issue as it was the first time around having to apply for a personal loan.  The program is tough, very tough and you have to be seriously motivated to make it through, but if that is what you want, I thought it was better than Lexington, Concord and several others.  There is also Novus Law School online for getting your JD.  You can look up a list of all the states and their requirements for sitting for the bar.  Best wishes.

John
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on April 02, 2013, 08:24:35 PM
Not sure why you would recommend Novus, they are bogus and not registered with California.  Very doubtful a Novus degree would qualify anyone for a bar exam anywhere.

The Novus site is full of official looking garbage but no mention of EVEN ONE sucker graduate who ever passed a bar anywhere.

Taft on the other hand is a real law school with real praticing attorneys who graduated:

http://www.taftu.edu/tls/honoredgrads.htm
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: reformer on May 07, 2013, 01:41:44 PM
John,
May I suggest some structure in your writing?
How can somebody read such along paragraph and make any sense out of it?


Yes I have experience with Taft Law School formerly Witkin School of Law at Taft University.  As you know, the ABA does not accredit any online law school, but in the state of California where Taft Law School is located, if one passes the "Baby Bar" after

John
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: jennid1234 on May 08, 2013, 11:28:39 AM
Taft like Concord is a good way to achieve if your ambition is to become a lawyer.  I'm at Concord, and in June I will be halfway through my third year. It's a lot of work, especially if you have a full time job.  Loving this year because I passed the baby bar in October.  I took the baby bar twice and barely passed the second time, but studying for that test while doing second year classes and working was incredibly hard - no vacation last year - but went to a Raider game before the October test to just clear my mind.  This year was a shocker, 6 classes to start and now that I passed my elective, dropping to 5 classes is a little easier. I am looking forward to only 4 classes in July as our legal research final is in June.  My progress was slow at first but now I'm maintaining an agressive schedule of studying every chance I can.  I still love the law, evidence is a great class this year, professional responsibility has a great instructor.  Legal analysis is hard and my corporations class - EASY EASY - since I work in the corporate group at a law firm (LARGE law firm).  I have no regrets leaving it in two years to practice in CALI;)  Will be close to family, this goal, although not completed, was well worth the work!
Title: Taft Law School beginning in Sept
Post by: bigdaddyju34 on August 17, 2013, 01:10:15 PM
I have decided to attend Taft beginning this fall. I am 100% dedicated to attending law school. Honestly, I would rather attend ABA accredited school because of the options it would open. At this time in my life it is not an option due to distance, money and being self employed. I am enrolled in the JDAT (attorney track) and plan on taking the FYLSX and then eventually the CA state bar. I would like to communicate with currently enrolled students or former graduates of online law schools. I would like any feedback you would like to give.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: DeltaBravoKS on August 17, 2013, 02:45:46 PM
Good luck, Big Daddy.  Please keep us posted on your experience.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 18, 2013, 11:03:44 AM
Good luck, Big Daddy.  Please keep us posted on your experience.

Putting in the time is the key. Also don't expect high grades from Taft just give it 100% effort.  The GPA is irrelevant; I graduated with under 3.0 and passed the Cal Bar on the first go.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: bigdaddyju34 on October 15, 2013, 08:50:25 AM
Just wanted to take a quick moment and post an update. So I started Taft in August 2013. I began in their Intro to Law class which was a very basic understanding of Law. I enjoyed the class and did very well. Now we have begun the substantive classes. We began with two weeks of Torts class and the Intentional Torts. At Taft you study one subject for one week or possibly two weeks and some weeks you have two classes, the second class is always Legal Writing. The discussion boards are great within the Taft online system. It could compare to consulting with your classmates in a brick and mortar school, however I do not believe the quality of current students even closely compares with that of a brick and mortar school. There is ALOT of reading and case briefing, which I expected. I am not sure if switching from class to class each week is a good idea, but I am only two months in so what do I know? It is hard giving 110% to Torts and then dropping that at the drop of a hat and going into Criminal Law or Contracts. Some people believe that they all tie together and so far they have but it is hard. I will say that I can already tell that it is NO CAKE WALK. It is apparent that there are some students that will not make it, but there are some very bright individuals as well. I guess with no formal admission test like the LSAT you will get students with all types of educational experiences. All in all, I am very happy with my decision but I will say that it would not be a form of study for people with no discipline. You are given assignments and expected to complete them all on your own or if you have formed a study group you can work with them. The professors will be happy to work with you and post model responses to the questions but you are expected to learn the law on your own and make time to complete all assignments. So far I am spending about 25-30 hours a week on my studies. I could always spend more time and it would be very beneficial, however I do not believe that you could spend any less time and get an efficient education enough to pass the hardest bar exam in the county.  I will continue to post my experiences on this discussion board, but overall, I am very pleased and I look forward to my studies each and every day.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on October 16, 2013, 12:22:38 AM
Good to hear you are enjoying Taft as for the intentional torts and learning differnet topics that is what you will be expected to do when the bar comes around. The California bar consists of 13 subjects Torts, Contracts, Civil Procedure, Property, Con-Law, Evidence, Community Property, Remedies, Wills & Trusts, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure and Business Associations/Corporations. Any of those 13 subjects can be tested during the three day exam, but only 6 will be so learning to cram different in now is good practice.

I imagine you are correct ABA students as a whole are probably higher caliber than those at Taft, but all that really matters is what you do. I know the first few months can be overwhelming, but stay focused and you will be fine.

Also I think a common mistake 1L's make is overthinking and making topics more complicated than they need to be. I was guilty of this first year, but improved as time went on.

Also some good sites to use are ecasebriefs.com to get a grasp on cases and also use CALI lessons to start working on practice problems.

Additionally continue using this site it is a great resource for current law students.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: mqureshi8 on January 03, 2014, 11:24:37 PM
Has anyone graduated from any of these non-accredited online law Schools from California i.e (Taft, Concord) and is earning decent salary as an Attorney?  If so, how many years did it take in order to establish ones credentials after passing the California bar and work solo or elsewhere?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on January 04, 2014, 05:18:43 PM
Graduated from Taft and made over 100K as a solo practice attorney my first full year out in 1993.  But if it's a salary you crave, you will earn $8700 at the mall selling shoes.  In other words if you can't do it on your own, look elsewhere for law school.  No one hires DL grads.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: mqureshi8 on January 04, 2014, 09:44:45 PM
Thanks for the info,  so your advise is to work as a solo practicing Attorney in Cali, because no one will hire Bar accepted DL graduate.  By the way, which mall offers a 90,000 salary for selling shoes at the mall.  I would love to work at the mall selling shoes making that much.  Someone should inform Al Bundy of the potential in such a career.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on January 04, 2014, 10:31:20 PM
I think he said $8700, not $90,000.

I've met several DL law grads here in California. They have all struck me as exceptionally motivated, sharp individuals. I think they have to be, even more so than the average lawyer, because the majority of firms and government offices simply won't hire a DL grad. It's probably unfair and snobby, but that's just the way it is.

If you are a HIGHLY motivated, disciplined individual then DL may be the way to go as long as you take the time to inform yourself of any potential limitations. Ask yourself what you hope to accomplish with your degree, because as Jonlevy said you will almost certainly work as a solo practitioner. After you build up several years of experience you may be able to join a small/mid sized firm. Depending on what you want to do, that may or may not be an acceptable career for you.

You will likely be limited to CA practice, as the vast majority of states will not allow non-ABA grads to sit for the bar.

I think DL can be the right choice for the right student, but you've go to make that critical self-assessment: do you have the discipline to make it happen, and are you realistic about your post grad options? If so, then you can have a rewarding career.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: mqureshi8 on January 05, 2014, 02:56:51 AM
Thanks for the advise.  I believe anyone who intends to enroll in a distant learning law degree understands that the self discipline and dedication must be present in order to complete the degree, even though the job opportunities will be limited due to it not being a traditional degree through an ABA accredited school.  However, those who inquire about attending would like to know that there's at minimum the opportunity to earn a living, even if it's self employment taking on cases until you receive the experience to prove yourself.  Just as online undergrad degrees were viewed in a limited manner as compared to traditional degrees through B&M schools, I believe one day the negative stigma associated with DL degrees in the law field will also be lifted and viewed as somewhat more equivalent similar to JD degrees through institutions.  I appreciate your input. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on January 05, 2014, 09:07:49 AM
If you are willing to take the cases other attorney's spurn and learn as you earn, DL is for you.  Workers Comp, Disability, Immigration and contract PD can all be entered with no or minimum experience provided one gets additional training first.  Check what fields are needed in the locality you plan to practice in by asking attorneys what sort of cases they reject. You don't even need much of an office anymore and California does not require malpractice insurance - so barriers to solo practice are non existent. If solo practice seems too daunting; I'd rethink the DL option.  In theory any law firm can hire you but they won't unless they are your uncle and you will be frozen out of most government jobs because they usually require a ABA or California accredited degree. All online degrees are viewed suspiciously by employers and will contune to be so for many years to come. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: bigdaddyju34 on January 07, 2014, 07:08:40 PM
So here we are beginning 2014. This is the year I will take the FYLSX in October. I am currently attending Taft and I thoroughly enjoy my studies. As I said before it is very demanding and you must be very self disciplined. Nobody is going to hold your hand and they are not going to wait for you to understand the material before they move on. There are mass amounts of reading and personal homework assignments that are not sent in for grading. I complete all of the personal review assignments even though they do not get turned in, frankly because I want to learn the material and pass the FYLSX on my first try. I am dedicated to understanding the material and learning how to apply the law. We do have weekly homework assignments that must be turned in for a grade. From my understanding this is not like a typically B&M law school. They say in the B&M law schools you have a mid-term and final and that is your class grade. Our grades at Taft come from homework, discussions with other classmates, mid-term, creating outlines and case briefs, and a final. While you are not limited to just one or two grades, you do have to keep up with alot of material and be disciplined enough to do all of it. While I believe that Taft will prepare you well for the exam if you do all that is assigned, I do not believe you would be well prepared if you only completed the assigned homework that is turned in for a grade.

My grades have been very good on my essay assignments and hypotheticals. But we do have multiple choice assignments from time to time and I seem to struggle with the multiple choice questions. I have a FINZ  strategies and tactics for the Multistate method book that has tons of MC questions and I do complete them, however I still do not do very well on the MC questions. This is an area that I need more work, I can also use more work on the hypo's and essays but my grades have suffered from the MC questions.

Overall, I am pleased with Taft and the education they can provide, even though it is mainly self teaching, they can provide some valuable feedback. It is what you make of it. As stated before, no employer is going to hire a DL graduate so be prepared for sole practice. That is what I want to do anyway, so it is of no bother to me. I would like to get a job as a prosecutor for a few years to gain the experience in criminal law, but that is highly doubtful with a DL degree. Maybe by the time I pass the CBX it could be discussed but I highly doubt it. I may end up applying to the state I live in to take the bar exam and if denied, I may try an appeal but that is not something I would prefer or recommend. But I have all the time in the world to fight these people so it does not matter to me if I win or if I lose. After passing the CBX I can practice on my own in CA.

Good luck to all that decide to attend Taft or any other DL school. Lets take a stand and defund the ABA. They want to defund ObamaCare, which I agree, but I want to defund the monopoly called the ABA! Just a little rant before I end my post. Thanks for listening.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on January 09, 2014, 05:59:39 AM
Agree with you 100% on Taft.  It is what it is.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: livinglegend on January 16, 2014, 08:43:40 AM
Very good post by the Taft student. The reality is at an ABA law school you are mainly self taught as well and there is no homework or personal feedback.

Upon graduation you may be able to obtain a public defender position in some of the smaller Califirnia Counties and maybe DA in a rural California county such as Siskiyous to gain experience.

Good luck on the exam and stay positive
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Steveandlanada on June 01, 2014, 06:08:30 PM
I have been researching D.L. school and also am highly considering TAFT.  Can anyone tell me who is allowed to proctor the exams?  Has anyone done any more research into any city, county or state govt's that might hire in California with this degree from TAFT?  I am happy to see that everyone that has posted has overall had very positive remarks about the school.  Thanks for any information everyone.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: barprephero on June 01, 2014, 06:56:37 PM
Very good post by the Taft student. The reality is at an ABA law school you are mainly self taught as well and there is no homework or personal feedback.

Upon graduation you may be able to obtain a public defender position in some of the smaller Califirnia Counties and maybe DA in a rural California county such as Siskiyous to gain experience.

Good luck on the exam and stay positive
This is just plain untrue
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: barprephero on June 01, 2014, 06:59:59 PM
Taft is not accredited - avoid it like the plague.  In fact, the ABA does not accredit any distance learning programs...
no longer true

and taft is accredited, just not "CBE Accredited" it is "DETC Accredited and CBE approved"
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on June 02, 2014, 12:32:48 PM
Has anyone done any more research into any city, county or state govt's that might hire in California with this degree from TAFT? 

I don't think there is necessarily a definitive list of which govt agencies might hire a DL grad, but you'd probably have better luck at some than at others.

For example, where I live in Los Angeles County it would be nearly impossible for a DL grad to get hired by any govt office. That's due to the fact that we have large numbers of ABA grads (many from well respected schools) competing for those jobs.

In a rural county in northern or central California, there may not be the stiff competition and a DL grad may have a better shot. Even then, however, I would caution that many lawyers are highly skeptical of DL degrees. It may be unfair, but it's true nonetheless.

It's conceivable that a DL grad who gains some experience first as a solo practitioner or small firm lawyer might get hired as a PD, DA, county counsel, etc. in a rural county. There definitely are examples of DL grads in those positions, but the numbers are very low. My guess is they probably brought some experience to the table.

DL can be the right choice for the right student, but it's important to understand the potential limitations before embarking on the journey. Just do your due diligence, have realistic goals, and you'll be pointing yourself in the right direction.   
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on June 02, 2014, 12:37:35 PM
Very good post by the Taft student. The reality is at an ABA law school you are mainly self taught as well and there is no homework or personal feedback.

Upon graduation you may be able to obtain a public defender position in some of the smaller Califirnia Counties and maybe DA in a rural California county such as Siskiyous to gain experience.

Good luck on the exam and stay positive
This is just plain untrue

Which part is untrue?

If you're referring to the notion of self-study, that was definitely my experience at an ABA school. We were pretty much left on our own to figure out what mattered and what didn't, had no homework, got minimal feedback. Lectures often consisted of the prof waxing on about some theoretical aspect of the law which was the focus of their academic research, and had nothing to do with our exams or the bar exam.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: barprephero on June 02, 2014, 01:43:41 PM
Very good post by the Taft student. The reality is at an ABA law school you are mainly self taught as well and there is no homework or personal feedback.

Upon graduation you may be able to obtain a public defender position in some of the smaller Califirnia Counties and maybe DA in a rural California county such as Siskiyous to gain experience.

Good luck on the exam and stay positive
This is just plain untrue

Which part is untrue?

If you're referring to the notion of self-study, that was definitely my experience at an ABA school. We were pretty much left on our own to figure out what mattered and what didn't, had no homework, got minimal feedback. Lectures often consisted of the prof waxing on about some theoretical aspect of the law which was the focus of their academic research, and had nothing to do with our exams or the bar exam.
In person Socratic Method requires the student to have done the reading (thus homework) and paper classes obviously had papers that had to be done (homework) and all you have to do is raise your hand or meet after class to get teacher involvement. Heck, even shooting an email (all you will get from an online school) will normally get you feedback from ABA too.

It may not be perfect, but its better than the online "alternative" is my point
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on June 02, 2014, 02:50:32 PM
It may not be perfect, but its better than the online "alternative" is my point

I don't disagree with that. I would never argue that online is a better/equivalent option. I've taken online courses, and there is a big difference between the traditional classroom experience vs online. If a person has the option of attending a brick and mortar ABA school, that is almost always a better option in my opinion.

I was just remembering back to 1L and how lost I often felt, and that the profs didn't really seem to care. I'm sure there is variation among schools, however. Mine came with a heavy dose of "you're on your own".
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: barprephero on June 02, 2014, 04:47:40 PM
For those in that situation there are (I am told) 1L help courses from Kaplan and other companies that could probably help with that (as much as one would get from an online school anyways)

Me, I just got lucky and studied with classmates who had similar schedules. We don't all get that lucky though.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: aubray1986 on August 20, 2014, 05:02:31 PM
Taft law school does in fact let you sit for the bar. However, each state to their own is different in the requirements. I currently reside in the state of California where Taft is located. For the last 3 years I have been monitoring the online capabilities of going to a law school online. Though not necessarily approved by the ABA (which is a private organization by the way) here in California graduates of Taft can and do site for the BAR EVERY YEAR.

Recently, i graduated with a DUAL Bachelors Degree from an accredited online degree program through known as Walden University. I found I was able to do much better as it cut out the BS of attending a Brick and Mortar structured system.

In the state of California to practice law many people do not realize you actually do NOT have to attend an ABA school to practice law. In fact many personal friends of mine completed their law degrees by working directly underneath a Judge or already practicing attorney. In California you are required to inform the actual state of your intent to practice law in this method. This information can be found by reading the following link which redirects you to the ACTUAL STATE WEBSITE: https://www.calbarxap.com/ (https://www.calbarxap.com/) Taft Law school is also accredited.

Though NOT THROUGH THE ABA- They are accredited through Distance Education and Training Council, by having this accreditation student are eligible for Financial Aid which- for those of you who may be unaware means you can ACTUALLY GET A LAW DEGREE, FROM A LAW SCHOOL, AND TAKE THE BAR.

To be a great lawyer I would suggest those of you who read this to learn what is means to actually conduct research. In the event whether you graduated from an ABA school or non= ABA- as an attorney you must set forth a moral obligation to ensure you are obtaining all the FACTS and not just listening to misleading and incorrect feedback from those who may have a personal interest or could be benefiting financially by making misleading or not presenting all the truths.

If you are planning on attending law school ask yourself these 7 questions?
1. What do I want to get out of my education?
2. What is it financially I can truly afford?
3. Where do I want to practice Law?
4. What type of law do I want to practice?
5. Does the state I currently reside in allow distance learning?
6. What are my obligations to my family, friends, or job?
7. Is an online program right for me, or do I require a 'Brick and Mortar' setting?

Success in an online setting requires drive and dedication. You must be able to become self taught, stay true to your outline course, and rely on your own abilities to focused. If you can not successfully maintain your attention to you a computer screen at minimum 25 hours a week, most-likely this learning is not for you.

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on August 20, 2014, 09:01:11 PM
I think the seven points you listed are right on point. Distance learning and non-ABA law schools can be the right fit for the right student. It all depends on your goals, where you want to live and practice, and whether you are a highly motivated self starter. If so, I think it can work.

In fact many personal friends of mine completed their law degrees by working directly underneath a Judge or already practicing attorney.

CA is one of the few states that allows study in a judge's chambers or with an attorney, but very few people go this route. The number of individuals sitting for the bar exam via this method is usually in the single digits, and of those only a few pass.

Most people need the experience and structure of a law school (either brick and mortar or DL) to adequately prepare for the bar.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: DeltaBravoKS on August 21, 2014, 05:02:07 AM
Good writing skills, including grammar, are a big plus too!
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on August 21, 2014, 01:27:43 PM
Good writing skills, including grammar, are a big plus too!

I agree, and it's especially true when it comes to taking the bar exam. Those graders are blasting through hundreds of essays. If you can't state the answer in a clear, concise manner you're in trouble. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: barprephero on August 21, 2014, 04:45:39 PM
Good writing skills, including grammar, are a big plus too!

I agree, and it's especially true when it comes to taking the bar exam. Those graders are blasting through hundreds of essays. If you can't state the answer in a clear, concise manner you're in trouble.

Not really. Unless you are talking a bar review or legal writing class. Just IRAC and you could have English skills that would flunk English1 in Freshman year of high school and still get an A-
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: bigdaddyju34 on February 20, 2015, 09:08:48 AM
So here we are in 2015. I wanted to post an update to my previous post in regards to Taft. So I started in Aug. 2013 at Taft. I have completed the first year of school at Taft but I have made the decision to not continue at Taft. My reasoning is that now we have ABA accredited hybrid programs that will allow you to complete most of the course online and have 1-2 weeks per semester at the actual campus doing a very rigorous program with many hours put in those 2 weeks. I did not go on to take the CA FYLSX. I made great grades on my homework and tests at Taft and was considered a leader in the chat rooms and discussion boards. I just get it and some do not get it. You have to put the time in or you will never make it. Anyway, I have now applied at William Mitchell for their hybrid program. I weighed my options and determined that it would be much more beneficial for me to attend an ABA program due to the fact that I am in a state that requires it and do not plan on moving to CA just to be an attorney. I thought upon first enrollment with Taft that I would at least see what the first year is like for a student since most people say this is the hardest year. This was a hard year but it can be done and now I do not feel like I would struggle with an ABA education. Taft provides a good education if you want to learn the material, but I did find that if you just want to learn the law, buy some text books on Amazon or somewhere and read them and brief the cases and then get on a discussion board such as this and throw your ideas out there for someone else to critique. That will help you understand if you are getting the concepts right. So all in all, if you want to learn the law and you need a school to do so or if you plan on practicing solo in CA then Taft may be the school for you. I am happy that I attended for one year and while I don't think the cost of this one year is a bargain for what you get, it did give me some experience in first year law so now I know about what to expect from somewhere else. Would I do it again? Absolutely.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: HappyStudent on February 20, 2015, 11:23:17 AM
Thank you for responding to my email and taking the time to write your experience. I wish I could do a hybrid program but I do not have a bachelors degree and a California school is perfect for me because I would like to practice in California after I pass the bar.
Thanks again and I wish you all the luck in your future,
Jahny
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: doctorlaw on February 20, 2015, 03:47:24 PM
So here we are in 2015. I wanted to post an update to my previous post in regards to Taft. So I started in Aug. 2013 at Taft. I have completed the first year of school at Taft but I have made the decision to not continue at Taft. My reasoning is that now we have ABA accredited hybrid programs that will allow you to complete most of the course online and have 1-2 weeks per semester at the actual campus doing a very rigorous program with many hours put in those 2 weeks. I did not go on to take the CA FYLSX. I made great grades on my homework and tests at Taft and was considered a leader in the chat rooms and discussion boards. I just get it and some do not get it. You have to put the time in or you will never make it. Anyway, I have now applied at William Mitchell for their hybrid program. I weighed my options and determined that it would be much more beneficial for me to attend an ABA program due to the fact that I am in a state that requires it and do not plan on moving to CA just to be an attorney. I thought upon first enrollment with Taft that I would at least see what the first year is like for a student since most people say this is the hardest year. This was a hard year but it can be done and now I do not feel like I would struggle with an ABA education. Taft provides a good education if you want to learn the material, but I did find that if you just want to learn the law, buy some text books on Amazon or somewhere and read them and brief the cases and then get on a discussion board such as this and throw your ideas out there for someone else to critique. That will help you understand if you are getting the concepts right. So all in all, if you want to learn the law and you need a school to do so or if you plan on practicing solo in CA then Taft may be the school for you. I am happy that I attended for one year and while I don't think the cost of this one year is a bargain for what you get, it did give me some experience in first year law so now I know about what to expect from somewhere else. Would I do it again? Absolutely.
This strikes me as a "good money on top of bad" decision making moment. Where you had to decide whether to "have wasted" a year of 1L with a decent GPA or stay with it at non ABA when ABA was a feasible alternative for you.

I think you made the right choice FYI. I hope they somehow let you transfer in some of your classes. Have you asked them about that option? It seems doubtful but I would still for sure at least ask. Heck, even if you only get one class let in, that's still a win right?

Good luck. You may actually have an advantage on your classmates due to your experience.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: doctorlaw on February 20, 2015, 03:54:42 PM
Thank you for responding to my email and taking the time to write your experience. I wish I could do a hybrid program but I do not have a bachelors degree and a California school is perfect for me because I would like to practice in California after I pass the bar.
Thanks again and I wish you all the luck in your future,
Jahny

THIS is what I think of when I think of online law school.
"I want to practice in CA" can ABA not practice in CA? If not, its a nonstarter.
"I cant because I don't have a BA" Well...........And? So? First there ARE ABA schools that take less than a BA just FYI on that (trust me, they are out there) Second, if you can't get into ABA then you shouldn't do online. If you can't get at least a 150 LSAT and have the focus to finish a BA then you are a statistic waiting to happen. DON'T BE THAT GUY.
You can do good in online or on campus, but ONLY if you raise yourself up to the ability first. Finish a BA online if you have to. Take LSAT prep and get a good score on it. THEN you will be ready for law school. Otherwise the first year exam is going to chew you up and spit you out and you will have nothing to show for it but wasted time and effort.

Its a seductive trap, criminally so in my view of it. Take people not smart enough to know they aren't smart enough. Feed them a lie about saving money and other false hopes. Don't do it.

That being said IF you are going to do at least enroll in a joint BA/JD program. That way if you don't pass the first year exam you can at least get a BA from it and use that to apply to real law schools. DON'T WALK AWAY WITH NOTHING.
(I can't think of links right now, but Know for a fact I've seen them out there-if other posters can post a few links on such programs that would be great in case future readers can benefit from it)
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: bigdaddyju34 on February 21, 2015, 09:21:04 AM
I understand the posts about not wasting your money or wasting your time and my personal opinion is that i have not wasted anything. I gained valuable experience in coursework required for law and the ideas and concepts it takes to make decisions regarding the law. I have discussed with my admissions counselor about my current coursework and they will not accept any classes as a transfer from a non-ABA approved school. As far as the money goes, yes, saving the amount of one year with Taft would have been good, but I feel like it is a small price to pay to see if a $30k per year education is going to be what I want. I would rather pay $5k than $30k. Money was not my motivating factor in attending Taft and did not really even enter my mind since I could have cared less what it cost, it is the education and what you can do with it that matters most to me. Not that I will in the future but right now I am living comfortably and have set the necessary steps in place to maintain my lifestyle for a long period of time. So while money may be a motivating factor for other students if you are wanting your education bad enough then you will do what it takes. So this is what I weigh when I consider money involved. I live in NC, in state tuition at a location that is a minimum of 3 hours from where I reside is $12k at the least. Then you factor in moving your whole family for 3 years, either renting or buying another house and the cost of living in the urban areas it comes out to about the same as $30k per year for tuition where you can complete your education online and keep your status quo with employment and living arrangements seems to make more financial sense.

In regards to the Bachelors degree, I believe that if you have not finished your degree then you have no business continuing on with law. Sorry if that hurts your ego or feelings but its true. If you can't make it through the basics then you will never make it in law school. As far as the LSAT goes, I am torn in this space. I spent almost 6 months studying for this test and I am glad I did because I do not think I would have scored as high as I did if I did not study. This test is not a test you want to go in blind on. This test concepts that you really do not learn in college unless you were a philosophy major and/or took some formal logic classes. I understand why law schools use this test because you will hear the story from your client and then you must make your deductions from that truth, but I think law schools could come up with a better test that would actually test ability in law rather than critical thinking. Don't get me wrong, I do think there should be a critical thinking section, but come on! All A's are B's and Some B's are C's and Not all C's are D's will really get your mind scrambled and I struggle to find much relevance with law deductions on some of this crap, but it is what it is and you must follow suit. Anyway, that is my two cents on the matters. Did I waste a year of my time by not continuing with Taft? NO. Did I waste money by attending Taft? Not in my eyes, it was a valuable learning experience that will carry with me throughout everything I do, so I find value in that. Are people going to hate on you for your decisions? Always, so take it with stride and learn from it.

Thanks for having this chat and discussion forum!
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: doctorlaw on February 21, 2015, 07:33:15 PM
I agree with a lot of what you said BUT the "having to move the family for 3 years" seems null compared to "having to move the family for the rest of their lives" since CA online law schools are ONLY good in CA. That part seemed odd to me.

It stinks you can't transfer in the credits though, but I still agree you are making the right choice switching to ABA. ESPECIALLY if you don't want to move the family (ABA can be used in your home state)
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: useropionion on June 12, 2015, 11:18:46 AM
I do not suggest TAFT Law School to anyone.  Have been accepted, spoken to rude people there, and based on my experience have no desire to  even start.  First impressions tell a lot. No accredidation is the least of my concerns with that school.  Customer service is primary, and if I'm not satisfied now, I will certainly not be confident with them with my education nor money for the next 4 years,

Sincerely, 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on June 12, 2015, 06:44:26 PM
I do not suggest TAFT Law School to anyone.  Have been accepted, spoken to rude people there, and based on my experience have no desire to  even start.  First impressions tell a lot. No accredidation is the least of my concerns with that school.  Customer service is primary, and if I'm not satisfied now, I will certainly not be confident with them with my education nor money for the next 4 years,

Sincerely,

Lies. They are Nationally Accredited by an agency recognized by the US dept of education..................pl ease, do avoid a legal career. Please.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on June 12, 2015, 08:37:12 PM
I am assuming he meant that Taft is not ABA accredited, which it isn't.

I know nothing about Taft, but I don't think you should expect great customer service from a law school.

It sounds like it is not a fit for OP, but if OP wants to pursue a legal education they should keep looking for a fit.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on June 12, 2015, 10:39:40 PM
I am assuming he meant that Taft is not ABA accredited, which it isn't.

I know nothing about Taft, but I don't think you should expect great customer service from a law school.

It sounds like it is not a fit for OP, but if OP wants to pursue a legal education they should keep looking for a fit.

By that math NONE of the online law schools are, and this guy was an idiot for not knowing that going into it.
I can see how being on campus would force more teacher interaction though. To be fair non aba is on campus too though.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: useropionion on June 17, 2015, 07:57:56 PM
In reading some of the responses it seems to me that some of the posts on here might be from persons working at Taft Law School. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on June 17, 2015, 10:57:56 PM
In reading some of the responses it seems to me that some of the posts on here might be from persons working at Taft Law School.
which ones? The one calling people idiots? Yeah, THAT is GREAT marketing..........
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 08, 2015, 07:39:52 AM
Lot of nonsense here:

The only accredited online law school is Concord, but it is not ABA accredited but regionally accredited meaning its JD could be the be accepted as an academic degree by another regionally accredited university.

Having actually acquired your California law license, you are not limited to California law.  You can also engage in federal practice and you do not have to live in California. You can also motion in to the DC bar after 5 years. However, each jurisdiction is different and you will need to do your own research as to what works and what doesn't.  Suffice to say given technology, a lot of lawyers do not physically work or reside in the states in which they are licensed.

Taft Law School unlike many other distance learning law schools, has a long term verifiable record of graduating students who pass the bar:

https://www.taftu.edu/TLS/honoredgrads.htm

Hope this helps.

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 08, 2015, 11:16:12 AM
To be fair a lot of them ARE accredited on the national level (which the US dept of education recognizes as accredited)

The federal practice is 100% Bull though, since you normally have to first be licensed IN THE STATE THE FEDERAL COURT IS IN to practice there. So, unless that federal court is in California anyways..................
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 08, 2015, 08:18:08 PM
"To be fair a lot of them ARE accredited on the national level (which the US dept of education recognizes as accredited"

USDOE accreditation is not useful in any sense to the student.  Regional accreditation means the degree is actually acceptable by other universities.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regional_accreditation

You are mistaken on federal practice.  A number of federal district courts (not all) allow any bar member to join, almost all the federal circuit courts of appeal and SCOTUS only require a bar membership.  Federal agency practice, US Court  of Veterans Appeals,  Military Courts of Appeal, Immigration, US Court of International Trade,  Social Security, all will accept any bar member.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 08, 2015, 09:09:50 PM
By other universities? You think they all plan to go to LLM/PhD programs or something??

And I speak of the federal courts that I have looked into. You speak of the common misconception that profs teach, but is proven wrong upon application.
VA and SSA don't even require you to have a GED, so those aren't the best examples either.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 09, 2015, 08:20:20 AM
"You are mistaken on federal practice.  A number of federal district courts (not all) allow any bar member to join,"

I was uncertain on this, so I looked into this in response to a query in another thread. Every single D.C. I looked at in a brief sample required licensure in the state in which the D.C. was located, or, on occasion, a neighboring state. I did not find a single D.C. in my limited search would allow for "any bar member" to join. I highly recommend doing a thorough search prior to accepting this advice. Short version- I belive this to be wrong, unless you have a very generous definition of "a number."

I do agree that there are other federal bars, including the Supreme Court and the COAs that you can get admitted to by bootstrapping, say, a CalBar admittance- but you should also note that CalBar has really, really, really bad reciprocity.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 09, 2015, 09:13:57 AM
Check the reciprocity map on page 5:

http://www.msba.org/uploadedFiles/MSBA/Member_Groups/Sections/Litigation/USDCTMDSurvey0115.pdf

56 district court have no reciprocity
37 have some form of reciprocity

How many are you admitted to?

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 09, 2015, 06:22:35 PM
Check the reciprocity map on page 5:

http://www.msba.org/uploadedFiles/MSBA/Member_Groups/Sections/Litigation/USDCTMDSurvey0115.pdf

56 district court have no reciprocity
37 have some form of reciprocity

How many are you admitted to?
"some form"
Just go to an ABA school people.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 10, 2015, 05:56:48 AM
I deal in facts.  Fact is you can motion into a number of federal district courts which are not in California.  Including some big ones in Illinois, Texas, and Michigan.  Is that viable for most online law grads, nope, but for a few who actually litigate, it can work.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 10, 2015, 08:06:48 PM
I deal in facts too, the odds are against them. And most aren't smart enough to check the jurisdictions before enrolling, plus a bunch of other stuff I am sure.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 11, 2015, 07:01:34 AM
I deal in facts too, the odds are against them. And most aren't smart enough to check the jurisdictions before enrolling, plus a bunch of other stuff I am sure.

That dear sir is a generalization not a fact leading me to believe that you must be one 'em.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 11, 2015, 08:30:09 AM
Generalizations are generally true......ESPECIALLY when dealing with COURT LAWS...........did you even read the conversation before kneejerk responding?
I'm done with this.

Some of the stuff that I said SUPPORTED the schools, some were AGAINST it..........most were just reality.
Most are smart enough to weed that out. Some very obvious people are not, and I suspect they know why.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 11, 2015, 08:32:35 AM
Generalizations are generally true......ESPECIALLY when dealing with COURT LAWS...........did you even read the conversation before kneejerk responding?
I'm done with this.

Some of the stuff that I said SUPPORTED the schools, some were AGAINST it..........most were just reality.
Most are smart enough to weed that out. Some very obvious people are not, and I suspect they know why.

"not a fact leading me to believe that you must be one 'em."
And I honestly can't imagine a more backwards uneducated attempt at self defeating ad hominem.............your name proves you aren't a lawyer so just stop.






Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 11, 2015, 10:32:35 AM
"And I honestly can't imagine a more backwards uneducated attempt at self defeating ad hominem.............your name proves you aren't a lawyer so just stop."

Bro how does a "handle" on this board prove anything?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 11, 2015, 10:43:59 AM
Wow, that escalated quickly.

First, I would like to say that I appreciated the links to the Fed. Ct. admissions. It's nice to see it collected in one place. So thank you to Jon Levy / Legalpractioner (I'll call you LP).

That said, this is true, and misleading. Allow me to explain. Imagine this scenario- someone passes online, wants to practice in Florida. They can't. They have a vague idea that federal practice will be allowed, provided they "pass a bar." They know they can pass California. So, they do (which is something, but we'll get to that).

Now, ignoring the fact that N.D. Fla. is about to change their rules to bring them into conformity with S.D. and M.D. Fla, let's assume they get in immediately to N.D. Fla. Here's the thing though- we are all aware of the federal jurisdiction case (state bars can't control it), but it would be almost impossible to-
1. Get hired by a firm with only a N.D. Fla. bar.
2. Practice law in Florida with only a N.D. Fla. bar.
3. Not get a ULP charge.

All of this is to say- it's incredibly hard. Is it doable? Well, anything can be doable. But if I was investing in online, I would expect to practice in a jurisdiction that explicitly allowed for it. Period. And then look into reciprocity. Maybe this will change- but I wouldn't bet on it.

Assuming you will be doing federal practice only ... um, yeah. And given the patchwork of admissions requirements.... (and don't get me started on the "But you can get a Supreme Court bar membership!" that and 4 bucks will get you coffee at Starbucks.)
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 11, 2015, 11:25:40 AM
It depends on the UPL laws in each state exactly what one can get away with.  Setting up a physical office in a state where one is not a member of the bar can be trouble, not always, but is not advised.  There are things one can do to mitigate the UPL issue though:

1.  Always state in any written communication that does not trace back to California - Member of California Bar and also affirmatively state not a member of the bar in any other state involved if there is any ambiguity involved.

2.  Check each states UPL rules and rulings.

3.  Gravitate towards low risk federal practice like immigration, tax, veterans disability, social security disability, international trade, SEC, military appeals and federal tort claims.  The feds occupy 100% of these practice so also regulate who can practice, not the states.

4.  Have your virtual office and mailing address where you are licensed.

5.  And finally avoid clients from your state of residence like the plague.

6. get admitted to as many courts and bars as possible.

7. look to other attorneys who practice online as mentors

Follow the above and you can live anywhere and practice with a Cal bar. license.

Does the typical online grad have these abilities, sure, if they pass the bar they are not dopes.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 11, 2015, 11:34:20 AM
Let's also assume that no online grad is going to get hired by anyone.

Now it is possible to file federal lawsuits in a large number of jurisdictions with just a California license.  Just Google "Orly Taitz."  Now Orly took a lot of heat for her political views but she has litigated in numerous federal courts with a Taft degree.  She did get sanctioned once but not for UPL.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orly_Taitz
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 11, 2015, 12:02:38 PM
LP-

First, if the answer is Orly Taitz, I suggest re-examining your question.

Of course, if you want to be a dentist, you can always do the non-ABA route. That is not at issue. That said, your last post conflate pro hac status and pro se status with admissions to a specific bar. Once you get admission to a state bar (such as California), there are different rules regarding pro hac, and, of course, a person can always represent themselves.

I would avoid your advice regarding UPL. It's pretty simply- if you're going to be practicing law in a state, you should be admitted to practice in that state.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 11, 2015, 02:44:07 PM
Unless one is still meeting with clients face to face, there is no need to reside in the same state as one practices.  Virtual law firms have been around for well over a decade. If one has gone to all the trouble to study law by distance learning why would they go back to the old school practice of law?
Just pick a field that does not require showing up for court, leave that for others.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 12, 2015, 07:59:48 AM
LP,

I'm not entirely sure where this conversation went awry, but it does seem like you're very close to giving advice to people out there that they do not have to follow the bar rules of jurisdictions, and, moreover, that these types of ethical constraints are just old fashioned. This might be true, but they exist, and if you are what your name says (a legal practitioner), I find it hard to believe that you would knowingly counsel people to engage in the unauthorized practice of law.

I think the more appropriate answer is that if a person really wants to practice law, they should go to an ABA-approved law school. If they are considering a non-traditional option, they should fully educate themselves on the various barriers to entry in the profession, and match those with their desired objectives. This includes paying attention to jurisdiction-specific rules, as well as desired future employment.

These things may change in the future; that said, I do not find your assertions... reassuring.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 12, 2015, 08:38:07 AM
Florida has one of the toughest UPL regimes but even Florida admits that practice of patent law, federal tax, immigration at the agency level is federally, not state, regulated:

http://www.flcourts.org/core/fileparse.php/304/urlt/Summary-UPL-Cases.pdf

Point is do not make sweeping generalizations and do your own research.


Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 12, 2015, 08:48:18 AM
LP,

I think you are missing, well, a lot of points. I have already covered what you discussed, twice. Anyone who has been through law school has encountered Sperry v. Florida ex rel. Florida Bar, 373 U.S. 379 (1963) and its progeny.

However, your "sweeping generalizations" about the protections afforded by, inter alia, not meeting clients face to face and just trying to avoid bar licensing requirements are dangerous. Telling people not to worry about bar licensing requirements because they can look forward to a career litigating exclusively federal claims is disingenuous.

I will reiterate- don't give bad advice. The best advice, if you don't want to worry about a severe lack of career options, is to attend an ABA-accredited school. If you attend a school that is not ABA-accredited, you should understand that your options may be very limited, and you should have identifiable goals (in terms of jurisdiction and career options) prior to attending, and research same. But if you have some type of nebulous, "Maybe I'll be a public defender, or try to work at BigLaw(tm), or patent law sounds interesting, and what's this I hear about trust..." then you're doing it very, very, very wrong.

This may change in the future. But that future is not today.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 12, 2015, 09:44:42 AM
I agree - anyone going into DL law school should know the score, 20-1 odds (5% chance) against ever passing the Cal Bar (whereas an ABA is grad is looking at maybe a 90- 95% chance they will eventually pass a bar) and no job at the end.  But people do it and are successful.  And they do have options besides sitting in California.  Everyone has to find their own way and that involves specific research.  Personally, I'd advise avoid Florida like the plague because unlike most states it really does occasionally go after UPL violations BUT I know attorneys who have navigated around that via federal practice alternatives and other methods.

But this forum is about alternatives and if someone serious and qualified wants to go the DL route for various good reasons, telling them ABA or no way is a disservice IMO.  There are enough DL and correspondence California grads out there practicing now to provide empirical proof this works for some people, some of the time.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 12, 2015, 10:11:36 AM
"telling them ABA or no way is a disservice IMO"

I don't think I do that. But I would say that it is a very, very rare person for whom a non-ABA school is a better alternative. And I wouldn't be giving advice such as you were giving- instead, I would be upfront as you were in the last post (20-1 odds again, probably no job), before saying that it might make sense, if you are just the right type of unique snowflake.

Overall, I am agnostic about the future of accreditation, distance learning, etc. But I prefer advice that is descriptive rather than normative. And for the vast majority of people, going to a non-accredited school is a bad decision (unless you don't particularly want or need to practice law). To use an analogy- just because there are example of people that make a career out of the NBA, doesn't mean I suggest that everyone in middle school can make it to the NBA. If you want to be a practicing attorney, you significantly increase your odds by going to an ABA-accredited school. I think people can make reasonable arguments about the barriers to entry, but they exist currently. And I think you can point to people that have succeeded from non-ABA schools (but not Orly Taitz, please), but they are exceptions. Maybe this will change, but I wouldn't bet *my* future on it.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 12, 2015, 05:03:08 PM
I think that is what LP and I often say.

I don't think anyone anywhere including Taft law School itself would say it is as good as an ABA school or that there is a guarantee of a job or a guarantee of bar passage.  In fact, no school except Wisconsin/Marquette guarantees you will pass the bar they have degree privilege and as far as I know only Westpoint and Annapolis guarantee their graduates jobs out of school.

I will build on your NBA analogy Steve Nash a 6'1 white Canadian won the NBA MVP it "can" happen. However, I or anyone else with a shred of logic would not tell a 6'1 white kid with no jumping ability living in Canada the NBA is in their grasp and certainly not the NBA "MVP", but it happened.

 I would even tell a 7'2 guys that jump out of the building the same thing although they have a better shot. Plenty of 7'2 guys do not make the NBA about 5% of high school players play in any level of college basketball and about 1% play at D1 schools half of which are usually walk on. There are 317 D1 Teams each with for math purposes lets say 12 roster spots, which means 3,804 D1 players and a D1 player is in the top 1 of high school players. Of these elite of elite there are 30 draft picks with guaranteed contracts and international players are drafted so about 20 college players get drafted in a year.

The odds of making millions with a law degree from Harvard or any other law school are about the same. Going to a DL school makes the 1% chance a .01 % chance and the truth is to whatever "making it" means in any profession are against you, but low and behold we all struggle day in and day out hoping to "make it" and in the 1% chance we "make it" we will still want more.

Nobody out there will say Taft is an amazing school. It will offer you a chance to take the bar exam in California and possibly through legal maneuvering enable you to take another exam, but no guarantee.

So the point of the rant is there is no easy way plenty of people go to "good" schools and get hit by bus and never work in a day, get strung out on heroin, or god knows what could happen.  This crazy chick went to Taft law school and is passionate about Obama's birth certificate that is how she chooses to spend her time and Taft has given her that chance. That is what she wants I don't, but she got the benefit of her bargain.

I think it really comes down to expectations. 99% of people in any ABA or even CBA law school class have had a pretty f'ing blessed life. There are literally billions of people in the world that would trade places to be in that position, but these students expect the bar to be passed for them, to not get rejected by employers, to not fail, and not having something bad happen.

People going to law school, undergrad, or pursuing any profession just need to do a reality check before pursuing it. I recently was talking to this kid who will be attending Cooley and he thinks he will make millions at graduation. Cooley did not tell him that he made up in his own head. That is nobody's fault, but his own, because even if he went to Harvard millions at graduation aren't coming.

Well that is what happens when you drink two red bulls within two hours end of rant. : )


Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 13, 2015, 07:38:55 AM
"The odds of making millions with a law degree from Harvard or any other law school are about the same."

That's just a false statement. First, if you really want to make tons of money (as opposed to a lot of money), get an MBA and take some risks. Start a firm. But if you want to the best shot of making "millions," then, yes, Harvard is your best bet. Sure, some people will go to "Random Law School U" and strike it rich as a plaintiff's attorney. But if you want the best odds of one of those million-dollar partner jobs, Harvard is the place to go. You're pretty much guaranteed an opportunity to compete for one (getting a rung on the BigLaw(tm)) latter). Let's go with a football analogy. If you want to play in the NFL-
Then Harvard is a guaranteed slot in training camp.
Other schools are like going to Alabama.
Other schools are like going to a FCS school.
DL is like going to a NESCAC (DIII) school- it's theoretically possible, and people have done it, but that might not be your best option if you want to play in the NFL.

"So the point of the rant is there is no easy way plenty of people go to "good" schools and get hit by bus and never work in a day, get strung out on heroin, or god knows what could happen."

Just stop it. This is why your advice is bad. You can't acknowledge the obvious truth. Yes, I am sure that there are people that go to good schools and get hit by a bus or strung out on heroin- but I'm guessing that bad things happen to people at bad schools as well. Your constant reiteration of (paraphrasing) "any school that might eventually let you take a bar somewhere is just dandy" is wrong. Moreover, we just went through a period where advice, just like you are giving now, hurt people. Badly. That you haven't learned from these mistakes, and continue to parrot this terrible point is telling.

/rant
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 13, 2015, 10:45:01 AM
They do happen to people at bad, medium and good schools.

Yes I agree with your football camp analogy and it sounds like we are in agreement. A degree from Harvard will get you into training camp, but not a roster spot.

Harvard is a great school and will undoubtedly open more doors.

If you want to be an NBA Basketball Player being 7'0 is better than being 6'2 . No argument there, but can a 6'2 guy do better than a 7'0 yes it happens, but I will bet on the 7'0 everytime.

I will bet on a Harvard Grad over a Taft Grad anyday of the week nobody is arguing that, but as with any bet it could go wrong the Taft Grad might end up being better, but I wouldn't bet on it.

I don't think anybody was hurt by going to law school. It didn't work for some people that is life and I wouldn't tell anyone oh you got into Taft Law School your set for life you really did it. I would say a non-aba school the odds are against you and thinking you will "work really hard" and do great isn't the same as doing it. Everybody thinks that and for the most part when the rubber meets the road people back down.

I encourage anyone to attend an ABA school over a non-aba school.

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 13, 2015, 10:59:23 AM
"I don't think anybody was hurt by going to law school."

Let's be clear here. People were hurt, some badly. Now, we can debate whether these people were partially, mostly, or totally to blame for it. Whether they should have done their own research in, say, 2007 rather than depending on T4U's glossies and a half-remembered episode of Boston Legal. But the simple reality is that a large number of young people went to schools, spent three years of their life (which they will not get back), spent 200k (which they will not get back), spent the opportunity cost (which they will not get back), have gigantic student loans (which, like herpes, will stay with you forever- and they're even larger if they had to finance UG), and will never, ever, work in the legal profession. Moreover, contrary to some beliefs, a law degree is not a great "general purpose" degree, and I know from talking to many who were in those years that they omit their JD when they apply for certain, lower-level jobs because it is a hindrance to employment.

But that's why it's so important to emphasize that law school really should be a risk/reward situation. If you are paying for it, then it needs to be treated like a job opportunity- an investment. And most people wouldn't invest without trying to cost in the risk, and the possible payoffs. That's why, when we discuss what we would "bet on," it's important to state things clearly.

Sure, Taft might work for some people. But that's going to be an incredibly small subset of people. For the vast majority of people, the standard advice is, and should always be, attend the lowest cost ABA-accredited school in (or near) the jurisdiction in which you plan to practice (if you are completely agnostic about where you want to practice, that's increases your options, but factor in cost of living). Check the scholarship conditions. Be wary of certain schools (although they may have attractive options- do your research). Check the real employment numbers, and where students likely place. You can make an exception to this if you get into a T14 school, and believe you want to either do a clerkship/2 years in BigLaw/academic route, or the BigLaw route, or you have other clearly identifiable goals that the connections will help with.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 13, 2015, 11:14:21 AM
I agree 100%.

Law school is a risk as is any form form of education and don't do it expecting anything to be handed to you . Additionally, the lower the level the law school you attend the harder it will be to succeed, but for all intents and purposes most ABA schools are on the same level the location/cost matters more than whatever a school is "ranked" with obvious exceptions Harvard, Yale Stanford and the like.

 A non-aba is not the same level as an ABA school. Although you might be able to get licensed in another state after passing the California Bar Exam you will have to fight just to take the test. I personally have been to lazy to fill out some paperwork to get admitted into the D.C. Bar and I certainly would not want to or get around to filing a lawsuit to take a bar exam.

 I also recommend anyone attending law school to try working in a law office for a year or two as a paralegal or something.   The life of a lawyer is not as cool as it is portrayed on TV and that can be said about every profession.  like every other profession is not as cool as it is on T.V.

Additionally, just because you attend law school does not mean your a special little snowflake as I tell anyone that attends law school there is a 90% chance they won't be in the top 10% and a 50% chance they will be in the bottom-half of their class. Realistically, if you want attend Cooley and finish in the bottom half of your class your job prospects are not ideal, but you take that risk when choosing to enter.

There are no guarantees and law school is expensive it is a choice people make, but all a law school owes you is the right to take a bar exam. That is all they are selling.





Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 13, 2015, 03:10:16 PM
Well back when I attended Taft it was about $1000 a year tuition and another $600 a year for the books and outlines.  Another $1000 for FYLSE related costs and maybe $1500 for the bar exam related costs.  So costs also used to be criteria but as I understand it the spread is not  that big anymorebetween DL and ABA law schools.  First full year out in solo practice I netted six figures.

So there are financial calculations there that might help mitigate extreme odds.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 13, 2015, 03:25:08 PM
If that is the rate to take the bar exam in California that is great.

I think costs are a huge factor and DL schools are great for non-traditional students.

I think the typical right out of undergrad student is better served going to an ABA-School, but a 38 year old married professional with lets say two kids that lives in lets just say Boise Idaho with the nearest ABA School U of Idaho 500 miles away attending a non-aba school is not a realistic option. They could move their family, lose jobs and pay $100,000 while losing their income to attend an ABA school or if those costs are true put a few $1,000 down and continuing living their life. If it doesn't work out it doesn't work out.  In that scenario going to an ABA school makes no sense a DL school does.

If that student passes the California Bar then they might have to Petition the Idaho Bar to take the exam, but under those facts and having passed the Cali-Exam I think a court would allow it, but no guarantees. Again, those all considerations a non-aba grad would have to take into consideration.

I think the issue with a lot of bloggers etc is that they only see their scenario and for an unattached single person right out of undergrad they can realistically move anywhere and they have years to recoup their educational investment. So in that scenario yea attend an ABA school, but not everyone has that setup.

I am sure as a Taft grad you knew what you were into and a Federal Clerkship-Big Law gig was not going to happen and it doesn't happen for most ABA grads either.

I attended an ABA school, but by no means was it Harvard and I went in with realistic expectations and I was happy with my school and career up to this point. Different things work for different people.

Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Groundhog on August 13, 2015, 04:43:29 PM
I think the typical right out of undergrad student is better served going to an ABA-School, but a 38 year old married professional with lets say two kids that lives in lets just say Boise Idaho with the nearest ABA School U of Idaho 500 miles away attending a non-aba school is not a realistic option. They could move their family, lose jobs and pay $100,000 while losing their income to attend an ABA school or if those costs are true put a few $1,000 down and continuing living their life. If it doesn't work out it doesn't work out.  In that scenario going to an ABA school makes no sense a DL school does.

If that student passes the California Bar then they might have to Petition the Idaho Bar to take the exam, but under those facts and having passed the Cali-Exam I think a court would allow it, but no guarantees. Again, those all considerations a non-aba grad would have to take into consideration.

I think the issue with a lot of bloggers etc is that they only see their scenario and for an unattached single person right out of undergrad they can realistically move anywhere and they have years to recoup their educational investment. So in that scenario yea attend an ABA school, but not everyone has that setup.

So this Boise, ID graduate is going to go to Taft online, take the California bar, and roll the dice on a novel lawsuit that would ask the state bar of Idaho to overturn its rules? I don't think so.

The applicable rule, 207 (j) from the Idaho bar states, "The Supreme Court, upon application, may in its discretion vary the application or waive any provision of this rule where strict compliance will cause undue hardship to the Applicant." There is no way the Idaho Supreme Court is going to consider a non-approved law school to be relief from "strict" compliance or that your inability to attend an ABA-accredited law school will count as undue hardship.

Your argument fails both prongs of the actual rule, when both are required for your theory. I am concerned because this took all of 1 minute to google given what we as attorneys know, but I sincerely hope you do not encourage someone less familiar with bar admissions to think such a path is reasonable.

Finally, the fact that Boise, a regional legal market, is without an ABA-school or even a state-approved one is a rather unique situation.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 13, 2015, 05:00:04 PM
I didn't say it was likely or even a good idea, but they could take the California Bar and attempt a lawsuit not an ideal situation, but for that persons situation if they really wanted to attend law school that would probably be a better route than attending an ABA school. Or before going to Taft that person could contact the Idaho Bar and what if any options they can reach and maybe one can't be reached.

TheA 6'1 Canadian winning the NBA MVP is highly unlikely, but it happened. However, I would not encourage any 6'1 Canadian to drop everything and pursue an NBA career, but people are responsible for their own lives and I am sure plenty of people told Steve Nash it couldn't be done and he can laugh in their face, but I wouldn't have bet on Steve Nash either nor will I bet on another 6'1 Canadian winning an NBA MVP.

As Legal Practioner's post said the point is to find alternatives.

Taft is unlikely to be anyone's dream school, but for the person in the Boise Scenario a DL school is probably their best option if they really want to be a lawyer and it may not work out. The logical thing for that person and probably better choice would be not to attend law school at all and why obtaining education at a younger age is the better route, but as I stated not everyone fits the cookie cutter mold of a 23-24 year old 1L right out of undergrad without any responsibility, but yea get straight A's in undergrad, 180 on the LSAT attend Harvard make partner by the time your 30 get married at 32 knock out a few kids and buy a few mansions and sail around the world. I recommend that route to anyone, but unfortunately it hardly ever happens, but I recommend that route over Taft.




Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: DeltaBravoKS on August 13, 2015, 05:07:20 PM
"Finally, the fact that Boise, a regional legal market, is without an ABA-school or even a state-approved one is a rather unique situation."

Unique, but not alone.  Wichita, our largest city in Kansas, has no law school.  The nearest is two hours away in Topeka.  An attempt to start a school catering to working adults was attempted in the 2000's but it never gained ABA accreditation and subsequently failed.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Groundhog on August 13, 2015, 06:35:26 PM
Two hours may not be ideal, but one could split the difference and live an hour away from each.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 13, 2015, 07:09:42 PM
Well back when I attended Taft it was about $1000 a year tuition and another $600 a year for the books and outlines.  Another $1000 for FYLSE related costs and maybe $1500 for the bar exam related costs.  So costs also used to be criteria but as I understand it the spread is not  that big anymorebetween DL and ABA law schools.  First full year out in solo practice I netted six figures.

So there are financial calculations there that might help mitigate extreme odds.
Did you have full undergrad prior to enrolling into Taft? Did you do it online or by correspondence? What was your undergrad GPA/Lawschool GPA?
Did you sit the LSAT? If so what score? Did you pass the FXBX and Bar Exam both on your first shot (or at all) and if so what was your MBE score?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 13, 2015, 08:38:46 PM
I graduated from Taft in 1992.  I had a BA and was working full time for the county govt. when I started in 1988.  Taft did not require a LSAT but I had taken one earlier but dropped out of Golden Gate Law School after a few weeks because I didn't like the lectures.  My GPA at Taft was maybe 2.5 but I passed the FYLSE and Cal Bar on the first try each.  I didn't really pay any attention to the score.  I studied only to pass the FYLSE and Bar.  Within six months I was getting PD conflict and family law cases on a regular basis because I let every attorney in town know I would gladly take any cases they wanted to get rid of. 

I have no affiliation with Taft except as an alumni.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 13, 2015, 09:54:18 PM
I graduated from Taft in 1992.  I had a BA and was working full time for the county govt. when I started in 1988.  Taft did not require a LSAT but I had taken one earlier but dropped out of Golden Gate Law School after a few weeks because I didn't like the lectures.  My GPA at Taft was maybe 2.5 but I passed the FYLSE and Cal Bar on the first try each.  I didn't really pay any attention to the score.  I studied only to pass the FYLSE and Bar.  Within six months I was getting PD conflict and family law cases on a regular basis because I let every attorney in town know I would gladly take any cases they wanted to get rid of. 

I have no affiliation with Taft except as an alumni.
You didn't mention the LSAT score, only that you sat it.
I still call BS on the rest of it FYI.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 07:03:53 AM
"You didn't mention the LSAT score, only that you sat it. I still call BS on the rest of it FYI"

Just trying to be helpful anonymous Pi dude since you asked.  But I am not about to argue with you.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 07:21:54 AM
LP,

I have no reasons to doubt  your post- after all, on the internet, no one knows you're a dog! That said, one thing did catch my eye-

"Within six months I was getting PD conflict and family law cases on a regular basis because I let every attorney in town know I would gladly take any cases they wanted to get rid of. "

cf.

"First full year out in solo practice I netted six figures."

I have some great deal of difficulty reconciling these two statements based on what I know. First, even had you said that you grossed six figures, I would find that remarkable and difficult to believe. But you wrote that you netted six figures (that is to say, after expenses, filing fees, staff - if any-, phone service, rent, what have you).

Family law and conflict PD cases earn almost no money. Now, I can believe that the rates were a little more beneficial before the state cutbacks of the last recession, but that time period was: a) also a recession, and b) before the most recent expansion in attorney salaries. And to *net* six figures, in your first year, doing discarded (not desirable) family law cases and conflict PD cases.... I don't know what to say. I can't say that it's impossible, but I know a lot of family law practitioners, and people that try to make it starting out, and they work hard- and I've never known any of them to have that success in their first year.

If you're not misremembering, you should really post about how you did it in more detail, because I'm sure there's a lot of people that would love to know about it.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 08:43:35 AM
EZ - one man office, cut the overhead, no employees, work 16 hours every day,  never take a vacation,  take every case that walks in the door and try to charge $350 an hour, back then PD conflict was $75 and hour.  SSD and SSI cases also pay big multiples on not so many hours. Never did much PI because too time consuming and too much competition.  20 years ago and no cell phones or email to waste time.  You could do it now too, you just need a flow of clients and a referral network and a plan.  I located my office between the two biggest bars in a one horse town that way the clients could have a drink before and after they met with me.  After I ended up getting killed on taxes, I worked a lot smarter and a lot less. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 09:01:20 AM
LP-

I have to quibble with a few things. I find it exceptionally hard to believe that a person, straight from Taft Law School and in their first year of practice, was commanding $350/hr in 1992. Perhaps you ... mischarged a client or two. But practitioners in fields quite a bit more lucrative than family law and with 10 years experience get fee reversals for charging $300 an hour.

SSD and SSI cases are time consuming and not very lucrative- they require high volume and take time. I find it relatively difficult to believe that you were seeing quick returns on those in your first year. Moreover, the 9th Cir., even then, was using the lodestar for these claims, and $150/hr for a seasoned practitioner would be a good recovery. See Starr v. Bowen (noting that contingent fee arrangement amounting to $150/hr was acceptable).

I understand that you hustled. I know many people that have hustled and eventually built up a successful practice. I have known precisely no people that have netted six figures in their first year of solo practice in the manner you described.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Groundhog on August 14, 2015, 09:01:55 AM
SSI fee agreements were the lesser of $4000 or 25% past due benefits. You must've had a lot of successful cases with back pay in your first year. How did you become competent in the area?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 09:14:55 AM
"and try to charge $350 an hour,"

As an FYI, there is also the Laffey Matrix.
In 2006-07, an attorney with 1-3 years of experience should command $151/hour in Sacramento, $209/hour in Los Angeles (useful as a benchmark for lodestar calculation in Federal litigation).

I don't feel like doing the math, but- the same attorney would earn $205/hour in DC (equivalent to LA). In 94-95, an attorney with equivalent experience would expect $151 in DC.

I am finding it difficult to reconcile what I know with some of your statements.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 09:38:32 AM
They have things called practice books that tell you what to do, step by step with forms for every specialty imaginable.  You should invest in them if you ever get a license to practice.  As for private fees, what a federal court might award is irrelevant.  Private fees are negotiated between the parties and unless unconscionable are usually much higher than federal court rates.  I dare say, a competent solo practioner can gross 200K these days their first full year out these days because technology would make them even more efficient.

http://myshingle.com/2011/06/articles/solo-out-of-law-school/is-160000-for-a-solo-out-of-law-school-realistic-or-rare/

I was in a good location, small town with only a few attorneys that was also the county seat with a giant prison just opening up there which provided as many PD, family law and civil rights cases as one could ever want from prisoners and correctional officers.  They were so short of lawyers, lawyers drove up 90 minutes from the next county down to take cases.  Now if I was opening up in LA which is crawling with lawyers, I doubt I would have done as well.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 10:00:14 AM
LP-

I'm not sure you understand the basis for the criticism, and that article does not support you. You made specific claims (conflict PD and family law). When it was pointed out that those sorts of cases couldn't support your claims, your claims shifted to include SSD and SSDI. When specific evidence about the amounts spent on that was proffered, you then stated, wait for it... "Private fees are negotiated between the parties and unless unconscionable are usually much higher than federal court rates." But wait, SSD and SSDI cases are federal cases.

I have known precisely no attorneys that start out billing $350/hour. None. And this would be in major metro markets that might support higher billing rates- yet you know state you are in a rural market, which would have lower rates. Conflict PD cases are not, and have never been, lucrative (as you should know). You can scrape by a living with it, but not a six figure income. As for civil rights cases (1983 cases) from the prison... um.... in your first year of practice, you were winning 1983 cases, from prisoners, and getting the attorneys fees from those? You know those take a while, right?

As for getting it from the guards- they are represented by a union, and they already have representation (the union attorney and the county attorney). They aren't farming it out to a solo practitioner in their first year if they get hit with a 1983 suit.

I could believe that you worked as a solo practitioner, and that you made a go of it, but you are offering up details that just aren't adding up in my experience. And then you keep adding more details that would appear to contradict your prior details.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 14, 2015, 10:25:21 AM
Go to a small town in California of which there are plenty and you can find lawyers billing $350 an hour. I am not sure where LP was located, but Butte County, Siskiyou County, Fresno County, Kern County, Calveras County, I could go on and on have almost no lawyers in them and often plenty of drug problems and therefore extensive criminal/family law cases.

People succeed not everyone goes the same route and if you have the aggressiveness to start a business I know plenty of people like LP that have succeed in Solo Practice. Doing criminal defense/family/foreclosure defense etc  is not rocket science, but you have to deal with people and relate with clients. Clients particularly criminal defense/family law etc clients do not care what your LSAT score was and are unlikely to know the difference between an ABA/Non-ABA school.

Those clients aren't attracted that nitpick every detail etc. Those are the kind of people that have been *&^%**ng  on criminal defendants, poor people in divorce or those being foreclosed on.

There are plenty of paths in the legal profession and LP took one. Not everybody goes to Federal Clerkship to law Firm nor do they want to.

I will make analogy I live in San Francisco so there are plenty of "boutique" barbers-hair salons etc that have charged me $60 for a haircut, but I don't need a $60 haircut so I go to Supercuts for $15.00. The barbers and boutiques probably went to some better cosmetology school or something, but I could care less my hair gets to long and I want to shorten it.

With a criminal defendant/family law case you don't need a Harvard guy to handle it. As LP says get a practice guide and fill out the forms and charge per hour and just because you also just because you bill these type of clients $350hr doesn't mean you will get full payment either. It is not representing a Bank or something where the money is guaranteed or working for a City, which I do now where payments and it is great. However, I have worked in small firms probably similar to LP where we spent 50 hours on a case only to have our client file bankruptcy and not collect a dime. Those are risks and why you should get a retainer lesson learned after that, but there are plenty of avenues in the legal field. However, none are easy and neither is anything else.

Again, if someone knows of a career that guaranteeing a million dollar salary, sitting in a cush office, offering court-side seats to the warriors and a private jet that is easy to get I really want to know. I will get out of this rat-race and do if that gig is easily obtainable.

 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 10:48:39 AM
"Go to a small town in California of which there are plenty and you can find lawyers billing $350 an hour."

That's not the issue. I know of many small jurisdictions, in states less wealthy than California, that have attorneys billing $350/hour... or more. Do you know what I don't know about? Solo practitioners, who have just graduated from law school (even a Harvard), charging $350/hour for law that they just picked up from a practice manual.

And this is in 2015. 1992 was 23 years ago. The rates weren't the same. An equivalent rate of $350, based on CPI, was $160 then (($206.50 based only on inflation).

Put another way, his claimed rate of $350, then, is the equivalent of someone today charging $600/hr. You tell me- does this make sense?

I know that you're all, "Anyone can do it, man." But at some point, Citylaw, you have to pay a little bit of attention to what's going on.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Groundhog on August 14, 2015, 11:01:34 AM
There's no way you'd get more than $4000 approved in fee agreements, especially if the cases were as little work as you claim. Furthermore, the fee agreements would have to be approved by a U.S. ALJ, a fact you failed to mention and your post suggests you were not aware.

Finally, I'm not sure who the barb about getting a license to practice is aimed at, but everyone here has held themselves out to be a licensed attorney.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 11:18:54 AM
I think Citylaw knows their stuff, the others, LOL.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 14, 2015, 11:31:48 AM
The Barber Shop, Dentist, Doctor all of them need licenses and I don't care where they went as long as they are reasonable and get the job done.

My dentist is two blocks away I truly have no idea where they went to Dental School, but I like them. They are licensed and I am not going to seek out another Dentist the Barber is the same thing I don't care where they went to cosmetology school I need a haircut. This is how people feel about lawyers believe it or not they have other things to worry about than what school you went to, what you got in contracts, etc. Some people do, but for the most part they want legal work done end of story.

As for the U.S. ALJ cases I assume you are referring to LP's SSI cases, but in California for normal representation such as Family Law/Criminal Defense etc work there is no $4,000 requirement. http://www.calbar.ca.gov/portals/0/documents/mfa/Sample-Fee-Agreement-Forms.pdf  see the forms provided by Cal-Bar.

Again, as I have said court is not an ivory tower. Not everything is done perfectly in fact far from it particularly in busy-state courts. Federal Court is a different animal, but California State Courts particularly Criminal/Family law ones are a zoo.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 11:36:23 AM
There's no way you'd get more than $4000 approved in fee agreements, especially if the cases were as little work as you claim. Furthermore, the fee agreements would have to be approved by a U.S. ALJ, a fact you failed to mention and your post suggests you were not aware.

Finally, I'm not sure who the barb about getting a license to practice is aimed at, but everyone here has held themselves out to be a licensed attorney.

I am sure you are right, 4K seems OK for a SSD case to me but I really haven't done any for a long time.  But these are great cases for a beginner, attorneys turn their noses up at them and the clients really do need help.  I always went the extra mile too and helped my clients get aid while they sweated out the long wait for a reconsideration or hearing.

No offense intended GH but I would not assume everyone here is an attorney otherwise they would know new lawyers don't know crap and need to get smart real fast about how to practice by attending court and hitting the practice books.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 11:43:54 AM
"I think Citylaw knows their stuff, the others, LOL."

Citylaw has a record of being overly optimistic, without a firm basis in what actually happens outside of his experience. I'll leave it at that.

I find some of your claims more interesting. You seem to have changed your claims regarding what you did during your first year as a solo practitioner.
Originally, you claimed that you worked as Conflict PD and in family law cases that other practitioners did not want.
When it was pointed out that these cases were unlikely to support your claimed income, you stated that you worked SSI cases.
When it was pointed out that these cases were unlikely to support your claimed income, you stated that you worked civil rights cases involving prisoners and prison guards.
You've also stated that federal rates (that's the lodestar I've referred to) don't apply to you because, "As for private fees, what a federal court might award is irrelevant."

Except that you've now claimed that also you made your money working SSI and 1983 cases, which are federal cases. Leaving aside the recovery time and difficulty of prisoner 1983 claims, and the fact that correctional officers would be represented by the government or by union attorneys first (not a solo practitioner), *any recovery would be in federal court.*

Look, I understand that this was a long time ago. Maybe you had a little bit of hyperbole. Maybe you meant to say something like, "I worked my behind off, and within the first few years, I was netting six figures." I don't know. Maybe the $350 was inflation adjusted, or you're just extrapolating backwards. But to quote Kagan, have you ever considered just confessing error? You've had a bunch of time to think about it.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 11:53:32 AM
First full year in practice (1993) I netted over 100K and had to pay about 50K in taxes and penalties which taught me a lesson that hard work does not necessarily get rewarded.  FYI, the first six months (1992), I lost money while I waited for payments to come through.  But 100K pretax was not big money in 1993 and even less so now.  Solos also don't have benefits and have to pay self employment tax.  So why on earth are you implying me a liar and/or senile? Also, there is more to be a lawyer than just arguing.   Point is, a DL grad can be successful and make a living but most likely as a solo.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 12:07:27 PM
LP-

I didn't say you were senile. What I have said is that your various claims don't make sense when viewed together. For example, I don't think you understand the difference between net and gross (or you glossed over it). That's one point of distinction that I brought up in the very first response.  Then you make statements like "100k was not big money in 1993[.]" (so when you said "six figures," you literally meant 100k?). Just to refresh your recollection- that amount of money, today, is more that $165,000.

So, yes, it is a lot. It's more than the starting salary of a BigLaw associate in a major metropolitan market. Admittedly, no benefits, but that's a lot of money for someone straight out of law school.

Your rates don't make sense (350/hr). Your vague assertions about civil rights cases in your first year don't add up. I have no doubt that you succeeded (it's not like I haven't figured out who you are). I just think you misremembered a few details about your first year of practice. For example, perhaps you worked your butt off, realized money from 1992 into 1993 (so really, 1993's income was for 18 months), didn't think about the full difference between net and gross (even minimal expenses implies some expenses), and so on. 

" Point is, a DL grad can be successful and make a living but most likely as a solo."

Sure. It's hard. Especially because law school doesn't do much to teach practice skills. DL, even less so. Congratulations on your success.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 12:36:13 PM
OK Loki, now let's get back to helping people on Avvo.

   "I don't mean sell it. I mean have an income from it. This kind is called the Lucky Cat. Its owner finds four silver groschen in his pocket every morning."
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Groundhog on August 14, 2015, 01:01:48 PM
There's no way you'd get more than $4000 approved in fee agreements, especially if the cases were as little work as you claim. Furthermore, the fee agreements would have to be approved by a U.S. ALJ, a fact you failed to mention and your post suggests you were not aware.

Finally, I'm not sure who the barb about getting a license to practice is aimed at, but everyone here has held themselves out to be a licensed attorney.

I am sure you are right, 4K seems OK for a SSD case to me but I really haven't done any for a long time.  But these are great cases for a beginner, attorneys turn their noses up at them and the clients really do need help.  I always went the extra mile too and helped my clients get aid while they sweated out the long wait for a reconsideration or hearing.

No offense intended GH but I would not assume everyone here is an attorney otherwise they would know new lawyers don't know crap and need to get smart real fast about how to practice by attending court and hitting the practice books.

$4,000 seems ok? That was the statutory maximum at the time of claimed SSI practice.

As far as assuming, no offense yourself but I'll repeat what I said: everyone here has, in some form or another, asserted that they are licensed to practice law. But that doesn't really change the substantive nature of this conversation.

I find it hard to believe there's a town so small it doesn't have enough lawyers yet it also somehow has enough folks to provide a steady stream of SSI cases (before boomers got old), civil rights cases and court appointed referrals for a newly minted lawyer to make $100k. It literally and figuratively doesn't add up. This kind of "advice" is dangerous given how relatively little prospective law school applicants know.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 14, 2015, 01:11:50 PM
"I find it hard to believe there's a town so small it doesn't have enough lawyers yet it also somehow has enough folks to provide a steady stream of SSI cases (before boomers got old), civil rights cases and court appointed referrals for a newly minted lawyer to make $100k. It literally and figuratively doesn't add up. This kind of "advice" is dangerous given how relatively little prospective law school applicants know."

Not advice.  Just what worked for me for a while.  Of course as Citylaw might tell you, small California counties notoriously also have their dangers.  In 5 years I was there, I got punched by an opposing party, spat on, had a  confused client show up with a rifle at the front door on a weekend, got accused falsely of several felonies, received numerous threats and was finally warned to get out of town.  Myself and a lot of attorneys there either had conceal carry, kept a loaded gun in the desk or just plain out in the open.  As they used to say, there is no law north of  the _______ river.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 14, 2015, 01:47:26 PM
California is a very unique state and there are countless counties with hundreds of thousands of people in them without an ABA school within 200 miles. Humboldt, San Joaquin, Fresno, Siskiyou, King, Butte, Calaveras to name a few.

This unique setup is likely why CBA schools have done well. In San Joaquin County it's CBA school San Joaquin College of Law does quite well.  Cal-Northern does quite well in Butte County and Monterrey College of Law does well in Monterrey and Empire College of Law does well in Santa Rosa.

That is the thing with California there are jobs for California Attorneys, but in places nobody wants to live.

As to being overly-optimistic I don't think I ever encouraged anyone to go to law school. All I ever say is you "can" succeed. I "can" have six pack abs if I exercised more and ate less as could most people. However, instead of going to the gym last night I went out drinking and I just ate a huge burrito. Nobody forced me to do those things and I could easily have not done them, but I choose the easier route.

This is the same with attending law school. You "can" finish as Valedictorian, but will you dig deep every-night for three years, attend every class, never check your e-mail during class, go to professor office hours, brief every case and do every single practice problem imaginable? Probably not and even if you do all that you probably won't be #1, but odds are you will no do any of those things.

We all tell ourselves we will do this.  BowFlex sells the ripped body image to people and if you buy one and use it all the time you would probably get in great shape, but nobody does it.  Everybody wants to learn a language and tries half-ass although they can "learn" one. I am certain everyone involved in this conversation "can" be doing something more productive, but for whatever reason we seem to enjoy arguing with each other anonymously over the internet.

So if you attend Taft or any law school be realistic.

End of rant.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 14, 2015, 02:10:42 PM
"I am certain everyone involved in this conversation "can" be doing something more productive, but for whatever reason we seem to enjoy arguing with each other anonymously over the internet."

I find it soothing. I rant here, get it out of my system, and it keeps me from being overly mean in my summary judgment motions.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 14, 2015, 03:19:52 PM
I find it soothing as well it is nice to be able to rant about whatever the hell you want on the internet and get in random arguments that will not result in any real repercussion occasionally I even learn something.

However, for these reasons I hope anyone actually considering law school takes anonymous internet poster advice with a major grain of salt. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFBDn5PiL00
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 14, 2015, 10:33:05 PM
First full year in practice (1993) I netted over 100K and had to pay about 50K in taxes and penalties which taught me a lesson that hard work does not necessarily get rewarded.  FYI, the first six months (1992), I lost money while I waited for payments to come through.  But 100K pretax was not big money in 1993 and even less so now.  Solos also don't have benefits and have to pay self employment tax.  So why on earth are you implying me a liar and/or senile? Also, there is more to be a lawyer than just arguing.   Point is, a DL grad can be successful and make a living but most likely as a solo.
Lulz DL is trying to teach me what being a lawyer is..............
and I don't know how much of this is BS (and don't care) but its the lack of Taft affiliation that I call BS on.
And unsure how unemployment insurance came into discussion, but like I said, I don't care. Tell me more I guess? And Senile? Odd to just come up out of nowhere. I take it you are accused of that often?
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 15, 2015, 07:45:55 AM
"its the lack of Taft affiliation that I call BS on. "

I told you I am an alumni of Taft.  So correspondence law (Taft is technically a correspondence law school) worked for me.  I am also on the faculty of two regionally accredited universities in the their graduate programs where I instruct online public administration and international law.  And yes I have the appropriate credentials to teach graduate courses.  So you could say I am a proponent of distance learning, especially in law where I think it is proven it works in a fashion given sub-par students and if ABA accredited would work a lot better.  But I am not a shill for Taft and would have said so if I was.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 15, 2015, 08:32:06 AM
"its the lack of Taft affiliation that I call BS on. "

I told you I am an alumni of Taft.  So correspondence law (Taft is technically a correspondence law school) worked for me.  I am also on the faculty of two regionally accredited universities in the their graduate programs where I instruct online public administration and international law.  And yes I have the appropriate credentials to teach graduate courses.  So you could say I am a proponent of distance learning, especially in law where I think it is proven it works in a fashion given sub-par students and if ABA accredited would work a lot better.  But I am not a shill for Taft and would have said so if I was.
To be fair, "if you were" you NEVER "would have said so"
-The rest, meh, maybe I'm just a cynic. I dunno. I agree with skeletor that this a good place to shoot the sheet though. It always ponders the brain when people say stuff like "If you were X, you'd be doing something else" um...........whut? Doesn't matter what the X is either I've noticed. Odd how the human brain works in people.
Is $160,000 For A Solo Out of Law School Realistic or Rare? - See more at: http://myshingle.com/2011/06/articles/solo-out-of-law-school/is-160000-for-a-solo-out-of-law-school-realistic-or-rare/#sthash.E1r5F2IS.dpuf

Rare. The answer is rare. And if a non ABA grad, near impossible.
I finally went to that link.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 15, 2015, 10:05:21 AM
You are missing the point, a DL law school grad who has passed the bar realistically has no choice but to go solo if they want to actually practice because no one will hire them.  If you have a law license you can practice law as a solo or any other lawful way.  And if someone has managed to basically teach themselves law and pass the bar, they should be able to figure out how to defend misdemeanors or handle a disability claim.  After a year, no reason why they can't do jury trials if they have had some contested hearings and watched a few jury trials. It is not as complicated as it sounds.  A lot of attorneys just plain get tired and never want to try anything new because it's "too complex."  I say law is law and if you have a license you can argue to the USSC if they will let you in the door.  I've filed some Writs of Certiorari with SCOTUS but am still waiting to get that call.
That Taft degree has served me well and will continue to do so.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 15, 2015, 07:32:31 PM
You are missing the point, a DL law school grad who has passed the bar realistically has no choice but to go solo if they want to actually practice because no one will hire them.  If you have a law license you can practice law as a solo or any other lawful way.  And if someone has managed to basically teach themselves law and pass the bar, they should be able to figure out how to defend misdemeanors or handle a disability claim.  After a year, no reason why they can't do jury trials if they have had some contested hearings and watched a few jury trials. It is not as complicated as it sounds.  A lot of attorneys just plain get tired and never want to try anything new because it's "too complex."  I say law is law and if you have a license you can argue to the USSC if they will let you in the door.  I've filed some Writs of Certiorari with SCOTUS but am still waiting to get that call.
That Taft degree has served me well and will continue to do so.
I get the "no other choice" part. I agree their other options suck. But saying that all is left to eat is your own poop doesn't make doing it a good idea.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 15, 2015, 08:30:57 PM
"But saying that all is left to eat is your own poop doesn't make doing it a good idea."

I don't understand the attitude, what is wrong with being a solo practitioner?  About 40-50% of lawyers in private practice are solo, get a grip.

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/migrated/marketresearch/PublicDocuments/lawyer_demographics_2013.authcheckdam.pdf


Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 15, 2015, 09:22:41 PM
"But saying that all is left to eat is your own poop doesn't make doing it a good idea."

I don't understand the attitude, what is wrong with being a solo practitioner?  About 40-50% of lawyers in private practice are solo, get a grip.

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/migrated/marketresearch/PublicDocuments/lawyer_demographics_2013.authcheckdam.pdf
"get a grip"...........on reality.

Starting solo without experience is an idiots task. The stats you gave mean jack. How many started that way? How many attended online schools with little to no real life connections of any kind?

I can't imagine this being more simple.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 16, 2015, 07:09:58 AM
Woah.... somehow, this thread devolved into the battle of the coprophages. :)

Anyway, I'll throw in my two cents. Solo practice is always an option after law school. But it it's a lot harder than just needing some gumption and practice manuals. I cannot speak for every jurisdiction, but it's an issue with my (current) state bar and a topic of conversation with local bar ass'n that there just aren't a replenishment of solo practitioners coming out of law school. I would say that ths issue is a little different than, say, 1992.

Next, it will be even harder with the DL option than with in-person, because you're not getting any connections, chances for internships, summer positions, etc., that often lets you learn to practice. What you learn for the bar exam is not what you need to practice.

Then there's the actual practice. As LP wrote, there are practice guides. These can be invaluable. But early on, there are a lot of things you just will not know. Does your court have local rules? What about this particular judge? What are the deadlines that can change... and what can't change? And so on. There's a lot of play in the system, but try to make connections and get some other attorneys who have already climbed that mountain to offer some advice.

Finally, the practicalities of being a solo practitioner involve business .... something many people are unprepared for. The tax issues, setting up client trust accounts, scheduling (and.or hiring an assistant)... all of these small things. Make sure you see if there are resources to help if you chose this route, or you could end up with a client complaint to the Bar early on in your career.

Working as a solo practioner (so I've heard- I'm more of the firm type) can be a wonderfully rewarding experience, allowing you to chart your own destiny. But it will be very difficult to go straight out of law school. If it was easy, then instead of hearing of all of those unemployed attorneys duing the last recession, we would have heard of a lot of solo practitioners.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on August 16, 2015, 07:58:55 AM
I would say DL learners are well suited to be solos since they have essentially taught themselves the law and therefore already have the basic qualities a solo needs which is self reliance and focus.  ABA learners are spoon fed by the law schools by comparison. You know what correspondence law consists of - reading Gilbert's outlines or whatever the online version is these days.  Concord if it is like its parent KU, might even have live lectures online.  Additionally, most successful DL students already have careers or are ex military or law enforcement and have networks and have been around the courts.  So I agree most 24 year olds wouldn't be capable of  going solo due to lack of life experience but that is not the DL demographic IMO.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on August 16, 2015, 08:54:36 AM
LP-

Well, if I concede your priors, that the DL learners in question have an aptitude for the law since they successfully learned it, have self-reliance, have focus, and, moreover, already have a great deal of experience with the court system from their prior careers... then, yes, the transition might not be as difficult.

There's a lot of assumptions built in there.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 16, 2015, 09:37:44 AM
Having the right attitude is great, but like 1% of the battle. Showing up and going "I'll figure it out, I'm self taught" is a BAD idea.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Citylaw on August 21, 2015, 05:37:02 PM
I do think LP makesa  point the few and I mean few lawyers that graduate from a DL and pass the bar have displayed reliance and likely have networks established.  The majority of DL attorneys I have met were non-traditional types with backgroudns similar to those described by LP. However, as I am sure even LP would admit very few people graduate from DL school it is very hard to be motivated in an online environment and for those that do get thruogh it the bar passage rates are minimal, because as LP claims they are not spoon-fed the law as ABA schools do.

The ABA model does a better of educating its students I don't think anyone is debating that. In a DL school you are paying less and getting less and the only way to succeed in that environment would be self-motivation, risk, etc which are the qualities a solo has.

I would never recommend a 23 year old right out of college choose anything other than an ABA school. However, the earlier hypo of the 37 year old living in Boise etc ABA is not actually an option.

I don't think anyone is arguing Taft is a "great" school. However, it can work for the right person, but it is a huge risk and odds are it will not work out as is the case for most DL grads, but it certainly can and does happen.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: 🍟💵🌲🍥 on August 30, 2015, 09:17:20 AM
I do think LP makesa  point the few and I mean few lawyers that graduate from a DL and pass the bar have displayed reliance and likely have networks established.  The majority of DL attorneys I have met were non-traditional types with backgroudns similar to those described by LP. However, as I am sure even LP would admit very few people graduate from DL school it is very hard to be motivated in an online environment and for those that do get thruogh it the bar passage rates are minimal, because as LP claims they are not spoon-fed the law as ABA schools do.

The ABA model does a better of educating its students I don't think anyone is debating that. In a DL school you are paying less and getting less and the only way to succeed in that environment would be self-motivation, risk, etc which are the qualities a solo has.

I would never recommend a 23 year old right out of college choose anything other than an ABA school. However, the earlier hypo of the 37 year old living in Boise etc ABA is not actually an option.

I don't think anyone is arguing Taft is a "great" school. However, it can work for the right person, but it is a huge risk and odds are it will not work out as is the case for most DL grads, but it certainly can and does happen.
I agree with most of what you are saying, but the sad part is that their target audience doesn't appear to be anyone "straight out of college" since they don't even require a full degree to enroll, and the credits can be from other quasi-accredited online schools like them (often they offer an undergrad associates of something or other-such as paralegal- for those lacking the credits as well) I can't recall if Taft does this, but I do recall seeing a few out there that do.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: iryancooper on February 12, 2017, 10:37:26 PM
After spending a good hour or more (and a full glass of Pinot Grigio) reading this entire thread (which I realize I just revived), I decided to actually take the time to register for an account on lawschooldiscussion JUST to reply to what seems like a largely derailed and hijacked thread about Taft (which LP continuously tried to bring back on point lol). 

I wanted to say that the last couple of pages had phrases like "just a place to argue" etc. 

As one of the few (only?) Taft alumni on this site, Legal Practitioner was almost completely UN-argumentative, though baited (trolled?) consistently.  As someone considering an online JD (just to add some knowledge to my other, completely separate, profession, clinical psychology), LP, I wanted to let you know that you have displayed a consistently grounded, pertinent, even humble(?) (not sure what word I'm looking for) demeanor on these thirteen pages.  You come off as as slightly older, mature, and to the point.  When other users said you changed your story (which having read all 13 pages back to back, I can assure that you absolutely didn't, you provided additional details) you remained collected.  As we say here in the south, your goat don't git easily. 

I don't mean to say "Wow, your demeanor is so leveled that you sold me on Taft," however I do mean to say that Taft is what is, and it fits a certain bill.  AND, I'm pleased to see an online presence that let's me know folks like you have found Taft quite able to fit your bill. 

Not only was the information you presented (quantitative) in this thread useful for Taft-considerers, but the quality of your online presence is extremely noted and appreciated.  For an attorney (and I know dozens) you don't seem to have a pathological (as a psych clinician, I use that term literally) need to argue, you aren't easily riled, and you are not overly wordy (opposite of this, my own post, and many of the other's on this thread).

Just wanted to say that on all 13 pages of this thread, you represented yourself and your alma mater well, and it helps folks like me who are closely judging Taft, with little more to go on than Orly.  I hope you keep up a presence on lawschooldiscussion. 

R.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: loki13 on February 13, 2017, 08:01:44 AM
Just wanted to say that on all 13 pages of this thread, you represented yourself and your alma mater well, and it helps folks like me who are closely judging Taft, with little more to go on than Orly.  I hope you keep up a presence on lawschooldiscussion. 

R.

I will point this out for those reading the thread. There are various advantages to different "law school" solutions. The Taft "Distance Learning" solution is not a good one for the vast majority of people. Allow me to explain why-

If you choose to go the Taft route, then (IIRC), you have to pass the Baby Bar in California. That's your first possible point of failure. They don't break it down by school, but recent statistics show that Taft is in the category of schools that have an approximate 25% passage rate (first time), lower for repeaters. So, assuming you get past that (showing your aptitude), then you get to spend even more money to take the real California Bar. And if you do, then Taft has a terrible passage rate on the real Bar. (again, look this up- it's 20% or so). So you have a 25% chance of getting to take the Bar, and then a 20% chance of passing it. Those aren't good odds.

If you do overcome those odds, you will have graduated with a degree that doesn't mean a whole lot in the legal practice, and isn't very portable. Yes, you can practice in California, but you won't have any connections. And you will find it nearly impossible to practice anywhere else.

There may be particularly motivated people that can make Taft work to their advantage; but most of those people would be better off at a different school. The number of people that a) succeed at Taft, and b) can only do distance learning, and c) are able to successfully practice law after Taft are vanishingly small.

This isn't impossible. But if you want to actually practice law with your JD, there are almost always going to be better options.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: Maintain FL 350 on February 14, 2017, 11:46:34 AM
Right.

I don't think that anyone here is arguing that correspondence/online legal education is always a bad idea, I think we are simply trying to point out that for the vast majority of students a non-ABA degree will present risks and limitations that are very difficult to overcome.

As long as the prospective is fully aware of the obstacles, then more power to them. But the key is to be open and realistic in your assessments, rather than seeing what you want to see. 
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: cusc2011 on February 15, 2017, 04:01:30 PM
Online legal education is not for everyone. I went to law school via online in my 40's while working full-time and obtained a foreign law degree and online LLM all in 45 months. It was right for me because I have a career and obligations and incurring 100k plus debt was not an option for me. I had no problems in my journey, I got to keep my six figure career and once I become a lawyer I won't have a problem transitioning over as a General Counsel if I decided to go that route. I never had my sites on working for anyone when I become a lawyer, so my route worked perfectly fine. I had no problems getting a bar ticket and will be taking the bar for the first time and once I pass I will have other jurisdictions available to me.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on February 16, 2017, 06:03:55 PM
I had no problems getting a bar ticket and will be taking the bar for the first time and once I pass I will have other jurisdictions available to me.

Not passed yet?  When you pass, let us know.  And you will have to wait five years to motion into DC.  After that you may want to take the QLTS.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: cusc2011 on February 16, 2017, 09:25:50 PM
Yes, that is in my future plans as well is the QLTS. Also, the DC bar, however, there's been new rule modification to Rule 46.  Also, DC is now a UBE state and I am taking the UBE and plan to transfer in DC through UBE transfer admissions.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: legalpractitioner on March 01, 2017, 06:57:02 PM
Yes, that is in my future plans as well is the QLTS. Also, the DC bar, however, there's been new rule modification to Rule 46.  Also, DC is now a UBE state and I am taking the UBE and plan to transfer in DC through UBE transfer admissions.

Once you have the equivalent of enough years English practice, you can also qualify for Ireland without an exam beased on reciprocity.  Good ole Taft diploma has been good for admission in North America, Africa, Europe and the Carribbean though got turned down in Northern Ireland and a Pacific jurisdiction.  Key to hopping out of the US is the English qualification.
Title: Re: taft law school
Post by: cusc2011 on March 12, 2017, 02:46:46 PM
When I started my journey, taking the California bar exam was my only option, however other opportunities came available during my journey and I was able to take the WA bar exam. One thing for sure the bar exam is doable, hopefully I pass the first time if not I will get it on the second attempt. The UBE is a game changer.