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Messages - loki13

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Choosing the Right Law School / Re: Brooklyn vs. Rutgers Newark
« on: April 15, 2016, 02:11:22 PM »
Let's see-

In the pre-crash days, Brooklyn was considered a better school (in terms of the "quality" of the student body, assuming you believe LSAT + uGPA = quality). However, post-crash, Rutgers/Newark is the equal of it. Rutgers has better employment numbers (getting a job) and even does better, now, in clerkships and "BigLaw." Brooklyn places most of the their students in New York state (duh), and Rutgers/Newark places about half in NJ, a quarter in NY.

So, what does this all mean? Well, I always say that the two things that matter most are cost and location. The locations are similar- if you want a NY job out of Rutgers, you will get it. So I'd make the decision base on cost (also cost of living- assume Rutgers/Newark is lower).

Finally- regarding the scholarship; remember that the curve is a 3.0, so a 2.67 is not *necessarily* a given as it is at some schools, but at least it doesn't mean you have to finish in the top half.

(As for me- I'd go with the money; Brooklyn doesn't offer enough advantage, and, TBH, I don't think your career plans are likely well-formed enough yet -"public interest of government work"- for you to pass that money up. Because if you're not going into a remunerative field, student debt can be a heckuva thing.)

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: University of Miami vs. Stetson
« on: April 14, 2016, 07:23:40 AM »
Thank you for the reply Loki! I want to note that I am planning on staying in Florida, but I want to consider my options in case I ever decided to move back home to Tennessee. You mentioned Stetson being great for litigation and oral advocacy, how does Miami compare in those areas? Also, if I chose to relocate from South FL at some point to North Florida is Miami still competitive in that region. Even with Stetson's scholarship I will more than likely be looking at six figures of debt regardless. Again, thank you for the in depth response.

The answers to your questions are both simple, and complicated. Florida is a single legal market, in the same sense that, say, California is a single market. But the market contains multitudes.

So let's discuss, first, the out-of-state thing. I wouldn't factor that in. But, to the extent you wish to consider it, UM (Miami) travels out of state better than Stetson. Why? Because UM is a private school that attracts a lot of undergrads from out-of-state, because it has a well-known football team, and because the law school (as well) attracts a fair number of out-of-state individuals. Stetson has good reputation in Florida, but not much of one outside of it. That said, if you work in Florida and then wish to go back, you'll have to make your own connections, etc. (And remember that the Florida bar, currently, has no reciprocity with any other state).

Next, there are markets. First, there's the "urban" markets- generally delineated as South Florida (which can be further sub-divided into Miami, F. Lau., "Broward", and W. Palm Beach), Tampa Bay (Tampa/St. Pete), Orlando, Jax, and Tallahassee. Then the state can otherwise be divided into South, Central, and North (incl. panhandle, which is basically Alabama).

Either UM or ST can get you a job state-wide. But UM has much, much better connections in the South Florida market, and Stetson has much better connections in the Central Florida market (esp. Tampa Bay, and Orlando to a lesser extent when looking at urban areas). Think of it partly as a function of proximity - you tend to make your connections where you are.

Either place can get you a job anywhere - an easy example would be applying for a state judicial clerkship, or doing work in Tallahassee.

Now, all that being said; I need to reiterate that if you have not been to these two areas, you probably should visit prior to making a decision if you are torn. There's a saying in Florida that when you travel south in Florida, you're really going north. Miami (and South Florida) is a wonderful, vibrant, international city that people tend to have strong reactions to (one way or the other). Kind of like Los Angeles. Tampa, on the other hand, is a more standard southern city with a lot of northern transplants (small downtown, sprawling suburbs) that also is close to some really nice gulf beaches.

Wrapping up- cost is a heck of a thing. That should play a large factor in your decision, esp. if you're planning on going into criminal work (although you will get loan forgiveness ... um, eventually). You can always see if you can get more money! :)

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: University of Miami vs. Stetson
« on: April 13, 2016, 02:54:11 PM »
I think I can be of more than generic help.

Let me tell you about the pecking order of schools in Florida.

First is UF.
Second (barely) is FSU (or, UF is second barely to FSU - depends on whether you talk to a Gator or a Nole).
Third is Miami.
Fourth is Stetson.
Fifth is everything else.

But that's a generic guide. Each school has advantages and disadvantages. UF, for example, can place better regionally (Atlanta, for example) and has a slightly better name. On the other hand, because it is remote, it doesn't have great internships/jobs while schools is in session. FSU is in the state capitol - and the home of the First DCA. Miami, of course, is king of South Florida. Stetson, while generally lower-perceived, has great connections in the Tampa area and is a great school for litigation / oral advocacy.

So what does this mean for you?

Location and cost. Do not go to law school assuming you will be practicing out-of-state. Period. You are choosing between two Florida schools, you will be learning a lot of Florida law, and it is likely (if not dispositive) that you will be taking the Florida bar and practicing in Florida. To give you an idea-

Of those employed within 9 months of graudation-
Stetson, approximately 81% in Florida, less than 10% elsewhere.
UM, ~ 65% Florida, ~21% elsewhere.

(Numbers don't add up to 100% due to those that report, but are not employed).

Now, note that many of the elsewhere are people that either clerked or snagged one of the few BigLaw jobs (NY, DC) or, for UM (which is a slightly different case) have a significant and substantial presence outside of the state, and made all their connections there.

What does that mean?

Well, UM is a slightly better school, and will give you better options out-of-state. This is all true. But you shouldn't be applying to schools like this with the assumption that you will be practicing somewhere other than Florida.

So, I would take into account two factors- cost, and location. Do you like South Florida? Most people love it, or hate it. South Florida is very different than the rest of the state. If you want to practice in S. Fla., you should go to UM. Definitely. Great connections. And it gives you a better out-of-state name and rep if it comes to it. But if you don't, and the money looks good, check out Stetson. Stetson has *great* connections with prosecutor/PD offices in central and N. Florida.

And I cannot emphasize this enough. Check them out before you decide. Miami is not Tampa.

Here's my thoughts, in brief-

First, as a general matter, I think it was a bad decision to move from three days to two days. If for no other reason that the three day CalBar had a certain ... mystique. I have more than one bar, and I can tell you - my three day CalBar is by far the most impressive, because of the three days.

I also think the changes are ... unfortunate. The essays are the part where the CalBar shines, although (in fairness) with the holistic grading approach ... it mostly weeded out the incompetent. Which is good!

I don't share your view of the PTs. Personally, the inclusion of PTs (which other Bars do not have) is not just distinctive for California, it also most closely resembles actual legal practice. You are given an issue and an area of law; now, make it work.

I also don't share your view that California will be flooded by out-of-state attorneys. The primary barriers to entry in California are two-fold; the existence of a Bar, and the rules on reciprocity. In short, if you're going to move and practice, you're going to take the Bar regardless of two or three days; it's the reciprocity rules that keep out most attorneys.

My personal view is that the three days is a good idea; but, then again, I would also be in favor of re-working the Bar extensively to more accurately reflect current legal practice; fewer "race to the courthouse to record a deed in random jurisdictions multiple choice questions," and more questions that reflect a knowledge of the law as it might be used.

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: POTUS
« on: April 05, 2016, 07:23:04 AM »
Maintain, have you given up on Hillary now that you see I was right that the FBI are going to interrogate hillary, huma and Cheryl?

Or do you think I made up that the FBI was going to interview her?

You seemed to be shocked now into silence...she may still have a chance but odds are that she was negligent. Agree?

No, it's just that nothing new has been added to the conversation. You're just repeating the same stuff, so there's nothing interesting to respond to.

Don't feed the troll.

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: POTUS
« on: March 18, 2016, 09:57:50 AM »

If your response is "Yes, but future FBI bombshells will affect the race", then we're back to the land of speculation and wishful thinking.

Stop feeding the troll. The "popcorn" began with the Benghazi hearing. Remember, the one that Senor Toll guaranteed would be the downfall of Clinton?

Same story, different day. You can't have a discussion with someone who changes the facts to fit their opinions.

Pursuing an LLM / Re: LLM thoughts?
« on: March 17, 2016, 12:03:31 PM »
It depends on what you want to do with the LLM. Are you looking for tenure track law school gig, getting into the private sector, etc. An LLM in what?

Generally, I don't think LLMs are all that useful, at least not enough to justify the cost. The exceptions would be Tax and Natural Resources/Environmental.

I would say that the only truly useful LLMs (outside of tenure track law school, and even those are marginal) is the Tax LLM, and even those are only good from specific schools.

I've known attorneys that have practiced in environmental law successfully; none of them needed an LLM. It doesn't hurt, but (unlike tax law) I don't see it as being worth the money.

Choosing the Right Law School / Re: KU v. Washburn
« on: March 14, 2016, 02:36:39 PM »
Disclaimer- while I am familiar with quite a few legal markets, KS/MO isn't one of them.

Generic advice; once you move out of the T14, the most important things to consider are cost and location. Period. Kansas will have marginally better job prospects, but it's unlikely to be worth the added expense. Especially if you are planning on practicing in that geographic location.

Make sure you review the terms and conditions of the scholarships. Also, don't depend on graduating at the top of your class- 100% of law school students believe they will finish at the top 10% of their class.

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: POTUS
« on: February 29, 2016, 03:21:31 PM »

Exactly. I got into a discussion with a guy once who was touting the Paul McCartney-is-Dead conspiracy. When I pointed out that there is no actual evidence to support the claim, he responded "Of course not! They covered it up man!" Logical reasoning at it's finest.

Yep. No more feeding the troll for me. I will say this - it's amazing not just how wrong he is, but how spectacularly. Even a stopped watch is right twice a day.

But engaging a troll is like banging you head against a wall; it only feels good when you stop. :)

Politics and Law-Related News / Re: POTUS
« on: February 29, 2016, 09:13:01 AM »


I will be brief. A website is not a periodical. Shocker. An op-ed by a person most known for writing a prior op-ed called, "Barack Obama's Presidency is spiraling downward," is not reporting.

Yes, we know that you love your popcorn. And before this, you got your popcorn out for the Benghazi hearing. And, well, that went as everyone expected except for you. And you have made many fearless predictions, such as Bernie will win it all, and the GOP will have an amazing and awesome candidate.

Here's the problem. Essentially, your predictions are non-falsifiable, as are those of any troll. That's why we're not responding to you (this will be my last exception). Other people bother with facts, and what is. That doesn't mean they will be right- after all, no one knows the future. But it means that they are basing on something other than want to happen.

On the other hand, you just repeat the same things. You will be here, trolling the same comments. If something happens, you can be right. If Clinton is elected, you will just say, "Oh, there must have been a cover up! I will be here with my popcorn, waiting for the revelations!"

Of course, I suppose one could make a substantial amount of money by taking whatever you say, and betting against it. Perhaps you'd be so kind to provide us your popcorn-worthy list of who will win the NBA Championship? I am quite positive that you have the 76ers.

In the meantime, enjoy your popcorn. Whether you are right (unlikely, if the past predicts the future) or wrong, why not take your political posturings to a place where people are a) more likely to care, and b) less likely to know that you're completely full of it?

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