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Messages - IPFreely

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21
Non-Traditional Students / Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« on: October 22, 2010, 11:26:19 AM »
People often trust mature lawyers more
You do understand that the reason people "trust mature lawyers more" is because they assume the "mature lawyers" have been practicing law for years and years, and so have experience?  Would you disabuse your clients of their mistaken notion that you have years of legal practice behind you, or would you let them assume you've been handling people's legal problems for forty or so years?

giving them  a massive competitive advantage over the kids that came straight through school and university to the law with no idea of how a business is run.
How does your business experience help you with:
I want to practice Elder Law.
?

What better person than an elder?
How about a 30yo who graduated law school at 25, worked for a firm specializing in elder law for five years, and then started her own practice?  You know, some kids really do love their grandparents, right?  Not everyone wants to stick their parents in a nursing home, seize power over their parents' retirement savings, and then go off to pre-spend their inheritance.

I am studying for LSAT  in December but it seems difficult for family to seriously leave me some time. My mother lives with us, she is 88 and in great shape, plus 22 year old son just came home from college to change schools and find a job and an apartment. Then ofcourse there is hubby who has demanding sales job in Petroleum industry and travels some.
Is your family going to be able to live without you for three years?  If they are unable to give you the time to study for the LSAT, do you think you will be able to put in the necessary time to study for your classes?  Will you need to hire a caretaker for your mother while you are in school, or is she in such great shape that she is truly still independent?

I want to learn more of the law.
That's a noble goal, in my opinion.  But as an academic exercise, do you need a law degree to do that?  Would buying some treatises and reading them on your own suffice?

As far as the money goes if I make a decent score on LSAT I think that is covered.
Maybe.  Depends on the school.  It does sound like you're doing well on your practice exams.  I don't know what UH's scholarship programs are like, so I can't comment on whether you are likely to get your tuition taken care of there.  Your GPA probably isn't going to be much of a hindrance to admission, since you went to school long before the spectre of "grade inflation" reared its head.

If you don't get a substantial scholarship, will you be impacting your and your husband's retirement?

With a 165, you'd likely get some scholarship money.  But note above about your family's time demands.  Some schools put all of their scholarship students in the same section, and have GPA requirements to keep receiving the scholarship.  Some proportion of the students will lose their scholarships after the first year (maybe after the first semester).  My understanding is that my second-choice school was such a place, and that half of the students lose theirs after the first year.  (They require a 3.0 to keep the scholarship, and 3.0 is the midpoint of the grading curve.)

If you think law school means hanging out on campus, sitting in the sunshine, watching clouds drift by, while talking with your classmates about legal issues . . . that can be part of it.  Most of it is hours and hours of studying.

As a mature entry lawyer, I expect some difficulty in finding a law firm that is a good fit for my expectations and experiences.  But within two years,  I also expect  to open my own law firm leveraging  my other experience  both legally and in terms of how I  help my clients.
Why would a firm hire you at age 65 (or would it be 66?), and go through all the effort of training you?  Do you think that such a generous firm would then be overjoyed to see you leave to start your own firm after only two years, presumably competing with them?  Since you imply that you have experience in business, look at it from the perspective of a hiring manager -- would YOU hire a job applicant in such a situation? or would you hire someone who is 25, has no family obligations, and plans to stay with the firm for ten or twenty years?

I really don't mean to throw cold water on your dreams, but try looking at it from the other side of the table.

Anyway, since your later posts make it clear that you don't really want advice, but rather want support and affirmation, I'll recommend that you take as much clinical training as you can in school, and try to clerk for small firms throughout 2L and 3L, so that you can have a basic understanding of how to serve your clients when you go solo.

Also, since you seem to dislike taking advice from young whippersnappers, I would suggest finding some older, perhaps retired, attorneys in your area to talk with.  Ask them their opinions, perhaps ask if they would be willing to let you clerk at their firms.

22
I was, in undergrad.  It was a structured six-year medical school program, with all in-program classes mapped out in a rigid order.  It was difficult to connect with the people in my "new" class year, since all the cliques had formed already.  I almost certainly would have switched into CS anyway, but that was still a factor.

I think it would be much less of an issue in law school, since 2Ls and 3Ls mix pretty thoroughly in their classes (with some exceptions for the few classes that have prerequisites).  I'm in classes with 2Ls now whom I took through orientation last year, as well as with my 3L peers.

Are you going back in January, or next September?  Either way, you'll still have one year together with your littermates, and can make connections with the kiddies during that time.  Focus on healing now, worry about school when you start again.  I'm betting you'll be fine.

23
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 12, 2010, 02:45:17 AM »
Well the employment for me has been pretty good up to this point and I have made some straight cash homie. Honestly, there are bitter people at tier 1's and at a tier 4's and it certainly does not help you to be in that category in any aspect of life. You seem to be taking it way to personally man it is an internet board.  Anyways, good luck to you out there.
Glad to hear, really.  And likewise.

BTW, I'm not bitter about law school.  I enjoy the hell out of it.  But I don't think it's a good idea for people to waste huge amounts of money on a degree with little likelihood of getting a job out of it.  Better to go do something that doesn't require $150K for an entry fee.

24
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 12, 2010, 02:23:11 AM »
Your really cool!  :)
I looked you up.  Golden Gate?  No wonder you're defending going to a T4.  Good luck with that.  What are their employment stats like?

25
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 12, 2010, 02:19:05 AM »
IPF's point (if I am understanding him), is that if she is serious, she needs to ring the alarm bell and "get hot."   At this stage she needs MUCH more information to make these important decisions about.
That would be part of it, but really, I'm suggesting she not go at all.  Unless she gets a full-ride scholarship somewhere, anyway, or miraculously gets into a T1, or even a T2.

The law market is saturated.  Doc review is being offshored to India as fast as the big firms can find literate workers there.  New associate hirings are down by more than half.  The number of law schools is INCREASING, and class sizes at existing schools are INCREASING too.  Does this strike anyone as being a little . . . off?

Getting "an education" isn't a ticket to anything but massive debt.  If you're extremely intelligent, very hardworking, and can do well in a good program . . . then go.  If you're average, want to devote your life to your family, and are just going to trudge through the motions, don't bother.  Go do something worthy of your talents.  Don't waste your money and your time on the sheet of paper that will somehow magically transform your dreary existence into a dreary indebted existence with collection agencies howling at you through the telephone three times every evening.

It's no different from the barfing undergrads who are drinking themselves into oblivion every single night in the undergrad bar district here.  Want to get drunk and hurl seven nights a week?  Why bother to take out student loans to pay a university ten, twenty, thirty, forty grand a year in tuition when you're too hung over to pay any attention in class anyway?  Just go get some crappy job, maybe working retail or waiting tables or something, and go get drunk every night without the debt, and without the pressure of explaining to parents why you flunked all of your classes, and so on.

(Brightens.)  Perhaps another anecdote is in order!

A couple of weeks ago, I was out getting plastered at a local bar along with some of my peers.  We got to talking with the waitress, and discovered that she too is a student at our local academic institution.  She is getting a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology.  Bog alone knows what her student loan debt is like, probably well into six figures.

After she wandered away to bring back more booze for us, I asked my peers, "what the hell do you do with a Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology?"

In retrospect, the answer was obvious.(*)

Now, all right, law is a little different, but not a whole lot.  The OP could graduate from her T4 and then go off and start her own law firm -- in the Obamaconomy, the odds of her finding an associate's gig are pretty damn low (and the current mess is going to last for years -- look at Japan for what Bernanke's policies, which he copied from post-Bubble Japan circa 1992, result in).  If she has a lot of friends and relatives with legal problems, she might be able to hang in there.

She could just as easily open a daycare and skip the whole law-school-massive-debt-hangover thing, and she would probably make about as much, without the debt service costs dragging down her net take-home pay.  Learn to be a plumber, or an interior decorator, or a stripper.

But in terms of being offered a job out of law school, what are the odds?  Especially when someone has absolutely no skill whatsoever other than "being a lawyer"?  And one who couldn't even get into a good school?  Like, a school with a large alumni network, in positions to hire their school's recent graduates?

When I was going through the decision process, and after having read this forum -- back when it was still fairly active -- I came to the conclusion that if I didn't get into a T1, it wasn't worth the expense.  Wasting $150,000 on a piece of paper just so I could help assho1e neighbors sue each other, for a net to me of $40K a year?  Not really worth it.

On the other hand, spending $60K (after scholarship) for a degree that would likely get me into a decent patent law firm, earning $100K to $150K a year?  Probably worth it.

You do the math, you make the decision.  If the numbers don't make sense, then don't do it.

I submit to you that the OP's current plan of action is one that, if she runs the numbers, will be one that will make absolutely no sense.



(*) Another round please, waitress.

26
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 12, 2010, 01:17:30 AM »
Well first off nothing indicates that IPfreely has even attended one law school class or even sat for the LSAT. Yet they feel the need to give all kinds of advice about  something they know absolutely nothing about.
Nice way to ASSume a lot of stuff.  I haven't checked your background out, but I don't go around blithely assuming that you recruit fools to attend a for-profit T4 law school at full price in order to make your living.

FYI, I'm a 3L at a mid-T1.  My LSAT was 167.  You could have found out at least the first part by looking at my past posts.  You might have guessed from the "IP" part of my user name that I'm interested in IP (something else you could have spotted from my posts here).  Just looking at my join date would have given you more info than what you ran with there, bubba.

I imagine IPfreely is one of those people that sits around criticizing everybody's decisions all the time and has never done anything ever themselves.
And I imagine that you're a complete idiot.  I also imagine that my imagination is more on-target than yours.

OP is free to make her own decisions.  Since she ASKED for opinions here, I figured I'd give her mine.  You don't like it?  Well, who cares what you think?

Again, law school is somewhat of a risk, but many people do find employment as a attorneys in some fashion. They do not all sit out in front of courthouses begging to defend child molesters. Also becoming a public defender is not an awful gig if they do have to defend child molesters. There is decent pay, loan forgiveness, and government benefits. Trust me there are a lot worse gigs in the world than becoming a Public Defender.
Hey, did *I* object to her becoming a defender of child molesters?  No, *she's* the one who spouted off about how she has morals.  Well, if she goes to a T4, she'll probably have to drop those.

(Brightens.)  Perhaps an anecdote would help to illustrate the situation!

The ex-girlfriend who convinced me that I could survive law school went to a T3.  She graduated into a really pretty damn great economy in 2006.  The only job she was offered was in the middle of nowhere in a tiny firm, earning a pittance.  The majority of her class ended up destitute, begging anyone to give them jobs.  She talked about her work, probably more than was permitted under the rules of professional conduct now that I know about such things, but anyway, her clients ran from small-time arsonists to a serial public masturbator who liked to jerk off in front of children to teach them proper technique.  When she wasn't defending dirtbags and perverts, she checked real estate titles at the county courthouse.  I suspect that that work has largely dried up, since housing sales are a quarter of what they were four years ago.

That's what the OP most likely has to look forward to, if she finds a law-related job at all.  A lot of T4 grads don't.  Especially in this economy.  Oh, and FYI, the economy isn't going to get any better any time soon -- enjoy your hope and change, they're what's for dinner.

27
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 11, 2010, 09:25:08 PM »
As people said there is a chance you might not get a job. That possibility exists in every profession and at every institution. I don't know if law school is a roll of the dice. It is a risk, but your odds are better in law school than they are in Vegas.
Nonsense.  Vegas is pure statistics.  If you understand the math, you can make a living there.  If you're just a tourist, you'll get eaten alive.  A bit like law school in that regard.

A lot of people who write all these negative comments about law school have entitlement issues and you will see that if you attend law school. They will bit** and moan about any situation they are put in and you can't listen to people like that.
I'm basing my comments on her "hi, I have no idea what I'm doing, I think lawyering is cool, but my paralegal program doesn't even have ABA accreditation, I have two small kids I have to take care of, and I'm planning on going to a T4 law school because that's the only program that's conveniently located" posts.  I predict that her future will include repeatedly hearing "Waitress, another Miller Lite!" The question is whether, while filling drink orders, she will be saddled with $150K in law school debt, or not.

If she'd written, "Hi, I just got accepted at HSY on a partial scholarship, my husband is really supportive, but is this a good idea?" my replies would be somewhat more positive.

28
General Board / Re: Thinking about going to law school....
« on: October 11, 2010, 08:49:15 PM »
I will have to go here.  And it's a T4.

Don't feed the trolls.  :-p
You see that?  Where was I trolling?  I was simply telling her the truth.

Who says I will be defending those people?  There are alot of other things that I could do you know.  And I have very high morals.  Thank you very much.
You could be a plumber, I suppose, or a daycare mommy.  T4?  In this economy??  With a college "degree" in "paralegal studies"??? Really????

I'll return to my earlier comment:  you're going to end up with $150K in debt, defending child molesters and drunk drivers.  You'll need to do that in order to pay off your law school debt.

Unless, of course, your idea of "high morals" includes defaulting on your student loan debt.  Good luck with that.

Stick with being a paralegal.  It doesn't pay much, but you won't destroy your entire family's future with a crushing debt load.

29
Where should I go next fall? / Re: Before you go to law school...
« on: October 11, 2010, 08:37:19 PM »
I really don't think med school is anymore of a guarantee. I was at a friends wedding these weekend and there were a lot of med students and they were saying oh it must be so nice to know you are going to make a ton of money as a lawyer. I thought ok well you don't know what you are talking about. I assumed med students would make a ton of money, but there situation is almost worse.
It depends on which specialty they go into.  A GP doesn't make shitloads.  An anaesthesiologist makes shitloads no matter what.  I forget what the other three golden specialties are, but any med student should be able to tell you.

Of course Obamacare may change all that.  In other countries, doctors make squat, which explains why their medical care is so crappy.

30
General Board / Re: Internship/Secretary/Paralegal Job
« on: October 08, 2010, 10:06:25 PM »
Of course it is.  That will be $75, please.

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