Patent prosecution has never been a mainstay of biglaw. Most pros work has always been done by boutiques.
and i assume boutiqes usually don't want to work with fresh graduates, and of course, doesn't pay big-law money?
Most boutiques do hire fresh grads and for the most part they pay market (or near market). Many also hire science advisors/patent agents and pay for them to attend law school at night. Even IP shops in flyover states start associates at six figures (~115K - 145K). The problem with big law pay and prosecution isn't the 1st year salary as much as it is the 5 - 8th year salary. A patent can only be drafted so fast, clients will only pay so much, and the billing rates for senior associates are often to high for them to be able to prosecute efficiently at typical big law billing rates.
that sounds pretty good. yes, big law associate salary increases pretty steady, at current rate, it's about 280k for a 7th year associate i take? how much does a 7th year associate at a boutique makes? and do they kick u out after 7/8 years at a boutique? thx