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Messages - kenpostudent

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Incoming 1Ls / Re: To Prep or Not To Prep
« on: October 26, 2012, 02:24:07 PM »

6.  Briefs are mostly a waste of time, how they're usually done.   


While I agree that case briefs can be a waste of time, I think it is useful to be able to summarize a case into bullet points, or a sentence or two.  Otherwise, how will you remember the case and refer to it on an exam.  Some of my professors did not care whether or not cases were referred to on an exam so long as black letter law was applied.  However, some professors required thoughtful examination of cases and direct fact-to-fact comparisons on exams to get above a B.  So, I don't know of any way to summarize the relevant facts and holdings of cases than to brief them.  Albeit, my case briefs were always very short.

they speak about these things:

- how every school not in the first tier gets you no job at all

- every school besides T1 leaves you unemployable and stuck taking temporary document review jobs for 35-45k/year in conditions similiar to a sweatshop - or doing insurance defense which to them is dispicable

- how people have no money after being over 100k in debt from what they think is a useless school

I went to a second tier school and got a job at a local law firm in Las Vegas.  I'll make six figures this year.  I think my class had about a 90% employment rate at graduation.  Although, not everyone had full time work.  I would imagine the full time figure would be around 75%.  I suppose that it depends on where you intend to practice.  You can make a decent living in law outside of big firms, but that depends on your geographic area.  For instance, if I were to move back to CA, I would be looking at 45% unemployment for new lawyers. I probably would struggle to find a position.  In Nevada, the bar is pretty tough.  He have a passage rate in the mid 60% range.  So, that keeps the populations of lawyers fairly small. The market is decent here.  I don't know anyone with a license that cannot find work.  However, unlicensed recent grads have to work harder to find jobs as law clerks, but those jobs are available for those willing to hustle.  Ultimately, the practice of law is what you make of it.  If you are a good entrepreneur, you can develop a vibrant practice.  Most law school grads, however, are looking for a job where their bosses hand them work.  To succeed in this economy, you have to find work and bring in business.  This means you have to network and creatively market yourself.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: To Prep or Not To Prep
« on: October 19, 2012, 10:24:35 AM »

But the bottom line is that what is going to get you through the trials and tribulations of law school and the bar (which i just did this novemberrrr!!!! 8) 8) 8)) is to remember that you have to pace yourself-and just like in university-do the absolute minimum you have to in order to ascertain the key information. A case in point of this is that the first time i studied for the bar i prepared by using BarBri outlines which were long and toooo fuckinnggg convoluted for me to really grasp. The end result was a lot of time studying-too muchhh in fact, and even more time stressing over how much information i haddd to cover. The 2nd time around on the MBE in cali (this last november) I used tony breeden's attack sheets. They were a lot simpler and more concise covering the key information and creating links between the disparate outlines. T



Preparation for the Bar Exam and law school exams are different.  However, the one aspect of this post that I agree with is that you need to somehow ascertain the limits of testable information and try to predict the types of issues that come up on the exam.  Review past exams is a good way to do this.  Sometimes you can review you prof's writings to get a clue of what he/she is passionate about.  Ultimately, you want to get as many practice exams as possible and see what issues have come up.  The good news is that there are only so many ways to test each issue.  So, you can determine which type of fact patterns signal which type of issues.  By exam week, you should have an attack outline that is one to two pages which contains the major rules that you will likely use on the exam. 

As for basic class prep, just read your cases.  I always did briefs, but they where very short by my third year, maybe a few sentences, mostly bullet points.  Don't be afraid to interact in class.  The most important thing is that you must condense the universe of information down regularly.  I never took copious notes in class.  My goal was to continually reduce my briefs and notes into an outline on a weekly basis, so by exam week, all I had to do is focus on practice exams and memorizing an attack outline.  Less is more.

Figure out where you want to practice.  Look at the Supreme Court Rule that governs the practice of law in that state.  If it does not list a felony conviction as a complete bar to admission to the bar, then it is just one factor in the overall evaluation of your character and fitness to practice law.  Fully disclose everything to the law school and the bar and you should be fine.  There are a ton of scumbags who practice law.  A juvenile felony conviction should not prevent you from practicing law, assuming that is the only baggage you have.

Law School Admissions / Re: Character and Fitness - Law School App
« on: August 08, 2012, 11:22:03 PM »
Answer the questions asked on your law school applications and your bar application.  Don't volunteer info that is outside the scope of a question, but don't be misleading.  I doubt either of these incidents will fall within the scope of questions on law school applications.  However, most states have a "catch-all" question on the bar application that is something to the effect of "Is there anything other than what is previously disclosed on this application that would negatively impact your character or fitness to practice law?"  You may need to report them on that question, however.  As previously mentioned, very few things prevent you from practicing law, but lying or failing to disclose is the big one.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: law school grades
« on: October 13, 2010, 08:02:56 AM »
Could we devise a better system?  Absolutely.  But the employers have little motivation to do so.  The current system works well enough from their perspective.  Yes, lots of good candidates are overlooked, but that isn't the employers' problem so long as they get their fill of good candidates. 

Most of the posts in this thread suggesting alternate systems appear to be motivated by a desire to reward the worthy candidate who doesn't get identified in today's system.  That's certainly a laudable goal, but it is not the purpose of the hiring system.  The hiring system exists to meet the need of employers, not to meet the needs of candidates.

"Fair" is not an applicable concept.

The fact that condoms come in different sizes proves that life is just not fair. I agree that the system should be employer-centric. However, my contentions are less about fairness and more about a more intellectually-honest and accurate system. It's a cop out to say that a better system could be had, but alas, we just have no incentive to make one. That statement is a truism, but it also reflects an apathy that; if carried to its logical extreme and overlaid upon other decisions, would stifle societal growth. Every decision has costs and opportunity costs. We both agree that the current hiring system meets the needs of most legal employers. I argue that the costs of developing a more accurate and honest system (at least for smaller firms) would not outweigh the benefits derived. I speculate that such a system could be adapted and used by larger firms, but we are both in agreement that this will NEVER happen because there is no incentive to do so.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: law school grades
« on: October 11, 2010, 03:12:16 PM »
Is an LSAT score taken 3-5 years ago still relevant today? Is that score still relevant after law school, the bar and professional experience? Maybe, but I doubt it.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: law school grades
« on: October 11, 2010, 01:46:21 PM »
I'm not sure I agree, but I am also not yet an attorney, graduate, hiring partner, nor employer. So, I'll defer to the wisdom of those who are in a legal context. However, I have interviewed and hired accountants. I share your concern with interviews. I would use an interview only to determine whether I like a candidate. However, the process could go one of two ways:

Option 1:

1. Pre-screening of Resumes

2. Preliminary Interview

3. Preliminary battery of aptitude tests

4. Interview with "Most Qualified Applicants"

5. Face-off between top 2  to 4 candidates.

Option 2:

1. Pre-screening of Resumes

2. Preliminary Interviews of Selected Resumes

3. Objective testing applied to most likeable candidates

4. Second interviews

5. Face-off of top 2-4 candidates

I'm not sure which way is best. I would have to experiment. BTW, many multi-national companies use similar models for screening employees. Why is such a model workable in business but not in law?

Incoming 1Ls / Re: law school grades
« on: October 11, 2010, 11:59:13 AM »

Do you really think you can just disregard all of the factors that got someone into Harvard in the first place?  Would you consider a 3.8 at Cooley and a Harvard grad equally if the Cooley grad got a 2.7 ugpa and a 151 on the LSAT when the Harvard grad got a 3.85 and a 176 on the LSAT?

Short answer: I would give them both a shot at passing a series of objective and measurable performance-based tests, assuming that I like both of them enough to want to hire them.

I'm not saying the Cooley grad will win. Maybe the Harvard grads win the vast majority of the time. If so, great... then I get the best candidates. I don't want to leave good candidates at the interview table simply because of an assumption of their potential based on the school they happened to attend. Even if the Cooley grad was a total screw up in undergrad and failed to do well on the LSAT, there is a small possibility that if he pulled a 3.8, he's learned some real skills. I would give him a chance to prove that in open competition.

Incoming 1Ls / Re: law school grades
« on: October 11, 2010, 09:31:19 AM »
Well, because I won't run a large national firm, I will be able to evaluate candidates more holistically. I will argue that my proposed approach could be adapted by big firms; however, we all know that they never will. I would use a performance approach, similar to what Big suggests. First, I would select candidates for further review by class rank and GPA, regardless of school. So, a candidate with a 3.8 from Cooley gets the same consideration as a Harvard grad (maybe more because Harvard does not issue grades). Because my firm will be local to Nevada (mostly likely, and for argument's sake), I would give the most weight to manifest and objective ties to NV. Therefore, graduates of Boyd, and graduates from other law schools who have lived in Las Vegas or in NV for a significant period of time get preference. The reasons for this are manifold: Las Vegas has peculiar climate (nearly an 80-degree temperature change from Summer to Winter); Las Vegas is a 24-hour town that exploits those with predisposition to addictions or lack of self control; Las Vegas is generally a transient town. So, naturally, I want people who are likely to stay in Nevada long-term.

My second factor would be manifest evidence of relevant legal experience or superior academic performance (which tends to show capacity to learn). The types of things that would embody this requirement are too numerous to list. However, I prefer real experience to academic potential. That real world experience must involve some form of demonstrable success in real life, but not necessarily law (it could be accounting, business, teaching, nursing, ect.) Real world success (that involves or approximates the representation of real clients or embodies equivalent skills) trumps academic success without experience.

So, in selecting a pool of people to interview, I would also randomly select a few "underdogs". Then, I would interview the pool on a purely subjective standard (likeability). Those who I don't like lose, regardless of qualifications. Once I get a pool of 5, I would subject those five to a battery of objective tests. I would use performance on the tests (both academic and practical) to wittle the pool down to two. Those two would compete against one another in some objective trial by ordeal (moot court or mock trial or writing competition or some combination thereof). The best candidate would win.

This is a time-consuming and costly approach. It also is worth its weight in gold to me. It will ensure the best candidates get hired. Because I don't take shortcuts, I usually create better mousetraps. I learned this from the USMC. Afterall, only the few and the proud can be Marines.

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