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Author Topic: Do big firms hire from their support staff??  (Read 8552 times)

jacy85

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2005, 09:47:30 AM »
Is it possible?  Yes.  The firm I worked for has taken on 2 summer associates who used to work for us as paralegals, file clerks, or administrative/HR positions.

Is it common?  No.  The ones we hired went to well respected schools and performed near the top of their class.  They had other aspects of their legal resume other than employment with "Firm Name Here."

I'm sure it helped get their foot in the door, but they in no way lowered standards in hiring them.  I've known 4 or 5 people that used to work for us, went to law school and weren't even given an initial interview either for summer positions or for a first year associate after graduation, despite the fact that they worked for/with various partners for 3, 4, 5, 8 years.

What the overall rule seems to be is that if your grades and resume would be attractive to the firm as a perfect stranger, then yes, your experience with them may help out a little bit.  If they'd never consider even interviewing someone with your grades and performance, then you could work there for 20 years and not get anywhere with them.

aryeal

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2005, 01:09:29 PM »
I would say it depends on the firm. 

My situation is very lucky.  I've worked for a partner for years who worked up from staff.  She had to fight tooth and nail to be accepted, developed her own lucrative practice within the firm, and made partner early.  Because I've been trained by this very hard-act-to-follow, her endorsement of me alone has a lot of weight. Plus, she already did all the groundwork for me by showing them the positive aspects of hiring in the firm.

My advice is to be proactive and tell the decision-makers you want a shot at working as an associate, you intend to apply for an internship, blah blah blah.  If they are lukewarm or you don't get an internship, get on the OCI train and put yourself out there in volunteer clinics, etc.

In other words, don't wait until you've graduated clinging to hope the firm is going to keep you on.  My firm makes offers to interns they like before the interns return to their third year.  If I don't have an offer by that time, I'm going to scramble!

Ad oculos

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2007, 01:14:28 AM »
I've never heard of any vault firm hiring from their support staff.  This isn't Boston Legal.  If you have the grades to work there, you'll get a job.  If you don't, slapping labels on binders isn't going to make a difference.

LawLady

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2007, 12:28:47 PM »
For those of you who think that being a Paralegal just means "slapping labels on binders," you are going to have a very difficult time at your first job.  Paralegals run more than you think in big firms, especially since some stay on much longer than the associates.  Treat the support staff like crap, and your reputation will suffer.  Have some class and stop acting like a pompous jerk.  You don't know what you are talking about!

oscarsonthepond

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2007, 11:43:49 AM »
Someone I interviewed with at a big firm did it...in fact I know some other people who've done it as well.  It of course requires good grades from a good school, though, but I think you'd have a leg up all things being equal.

Connelly

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2008, 09:35:05 AM »
My apologies for the bump.

I work in the IT department of a 400+ attorney firm, and I will be attending law school part-time in the evenings starting next month.  My assumption is (from talking to many around here) that if I have grades in the normal range that they would hire from, that they might be pulling for me if I apply here.  I have no problem with this, because I don't know if I'd want to work at a law firm that hired out of guilt.  I also know that if I have the grades to get a job here on my own merits, that I'll be pulling for them if I get offers from other places. :)

HippieLawChick

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #16 on: September 07, 2008, 08:59:30 PM »
I've never heard of any vault firm hiring from their support staff. This isn't Boston Legal. If you have the grades to work there, you'll get a job. If you don't, slapping labels on binders isn't going to make a difference.

Prediction: you will have a very difficult time with law firm life, if you believe this is all a paralegal does.  FYI: every paralegal in the firm knows more than you do for your first year or two as an associate. 

westcoaster

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #17 on: September 12, 2008, 09:09:50 PM »
for what it's worth, we had a student who had worked as a paralegal at a very well known V25 firm, had medicore grades T1 school, and rec'd a callback from the firm at OCI b/c of his past experience.  I'm not sure if they have made him an offer or not, but it got his foot in the door at a firm he never would have gotten a screening interview at normally.

BigLawHopeful

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Re: Do big firms hire from their support staff??
« Reply #18 on: September 12, 2008, 10:16:51 PM »
I work at V50 in support staff. They do hire support staff to be associates but being support staff doesn't give you a leg up at all. Doesn't hurt, doesn't help! Probably just depends on the firm....