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judgefriendly

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Tax LLM
« on: August 06, 2006, 02:11:03 PM »
Anybody out there doing a tax LLM? If so would you answer a couple questions for a JD candidate considering a tax LLM:

1. Did you work for a while after getting your JD and then go back to school -- or did you go straight-away from law school?

2. Which school are you going to?

3. What do you hope to be able to accomplish, professionally, that you would not have been able to w/o a tax LLM?

4. How intense is your program, i.e. can you work part-time?

5. Insert -- any other question that I should be asking but haven't

Thanks a lot

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2006, 07:55:59 PM »
I only know one person with a LLM Taxation. He probably wouldn't mind if I provide some of the information..


He graduated law school and worked as a deputy prosecutor. After a while, he and the prosecutor decided to start their own private practice firm--he went to John Marshall--Chicago for his LLM Taxation. (He also has an LLM International Business and Trade). His partner got his LLM in International Business and Trade and also has an MBA.

Is he happy with his specialization? I suppose. He is always busy.
"I enjoy being in school. I've learned so much already, with taking economics and law, and I have marketing and statistics coming up next."

judgefriendly

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2006, 02:15:05 PM »
Thanks for the post Wild Jack. I'm thinking about going to NYU, but I imagine that I'll have to keep my grades up in the top of the class in order to make it into the number 1 program in the country.

mt5245

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2006, 11:05:55 PM »
I just completed the application for NYU's tax program.  I'm currently working in tax now and I'm hoping to get into NYU, which is clearly the best program in the nation for tax.  I went to a lawschool ranked around 60 and did fairly well (just outside the top 10%) and served as a law review editor.  I've heard that its still very competitive to get into and by no means am I banking on getting accepted.  I've heard the program is extremely difficult so you should be absolutely certain that you want to spend your career as a tax attorney.  Take an advance tax course (like corporate, partnership, etc.) before you make this decision. Perhaps find out what its like to actually work in tax - its a lot more complex than most areas of the law. I hope to land a job in biglaw in international taxation upon graduation.  Good luck.

mnickel

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2007, 09:53:56 AM »
If you are a 3L, by now you've probably decided if you're going for an LL.M. next year or not - but regardless here is the advice I have to give for anyone who checks this thread out in the future.

1) It helps to have a job in the city where you want to get your LL.M.
I work in a corporate tax group in the DC office of a large business services firm, and every  attorney, save one, has an LL.M. from Georgetown.  Generally, grades are only really important if you are looking to get into a program in a city where you don't have any connections or a job - so if you're looking to go to NYU, the easiest way is to have a job waiting for you at NYU.  Georgetown's tax LL.M. along with NYU and Florida are considered the best programs in the country, but I know plenty of people who have LL.M.s from these school who don't have amazing grades - why? - b/c they convinced the school that they would be committed to succeeding b/c they wanted and b/c they had a firm they wanted to continue to impress.  That's how I got in to Georgetown sitting around the 50% mark in my class.

2) Get your job to pay for at least part of the program.
Actually, there are pluses and minuses to this.  The plus: It's free or lower cost.  If your firm is going to pay, you can probably pay for it with only Stafford loans and almost that's like free money.  The minus: You lose part of your available employee business tax deduction.  You can deduct the ENTIRE cost of an LL.M., b/c it is an enhancement to your career as an attorney, not a threshold requirement to a new career like a J.D. (Check out IRS publication 970 for more info -- www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p970.pdf).  I am having my firm pay for 1/2 - that way I get about $10,000 in deductions and support the tuition with only Federal fixed-rate loans - it's a win-win.

3) Get it right after law school.
Otherwise you will never have the patience or discipline to go back.  It's just 24 units - crank it out before you have kids.

4) Go to school part-time, go to work full-time.
Every attorney I work with says that the LL.M. is the easiest school you will ever go to.  It's impact is supposed to be like that of an extra project at work.  Get the money from your job and go to school two/three nights a week or on Saturdays - sure it will take you two years, but just think, you'll really want those tax deductions in your second year.




vaplaugh

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2007, 09:25:23 AM »
I know 3 people who went to Georgetown and one that went to NYU (the latter was many years ago) for an LLM in tax.  They all went straight from JD, so they viewed the LLM as a way to get a better starting job (which they all did - one of whom graduated this year and will be making $160K in DC for tax planning).

The NYU-LLM guy went to a 4th Tier school, and he says no one ever cares where his JD is from.  He says an LLM is a good way to boost your career initially if you went to a lower-ranked school.

But I think if 1) you can get a job in tax without it and 2) you don't want to teach tax, then there's no need.

UWTAX

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2007, 03:38:31 PM »
Anybody out there doing a tax LLM? If so would you answer a couple questions for a JD candidate considering a tax LLM:

1. Did you work for a while after getting your JD and then go back to school -- or did you go straight-away from law school?

2. Which school are you going to?

3. What do you hope to be able to accomplish, professionally, that you would not have been able to w/o a tax LLM?

4. How intense is your program, i.e. can you work part-time?

5. Insert -- any other question that I should be asking but haven't

Thanks a lot
1. I have not yet started my LL.M program, but I anticipate admission to at least one program this fall.  I graduated from law school in 2006.  I will have worked for just under a year before heading back to law school.

2.  I have applied to UW (University of WA), NYU, and GULC.  If I get into all three, I'll probably still end up at UW due to cost and family circumstances.

3.  I hope to obtain a position in the tax group of a large (hopefully v100) firm in Seattle.  I don't think I would be able to accomplish this goal with just my JD.

4.  I have heard that LL.M taxation programs are very academically challenging.  At the UW, students can go p/t and take up to 6 years to complete their degree.  It is possible to go f/t and work p/t (this is what I plan to do.

If you seriously wish to pursue an LL.M in taxation, I suggest researching firms you would like to work for in the market you would like to work in.  Check out the attorneys' profiles in their tax groups.  See what schools they are coming from.  That's how I refined my application list. 

PJP

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2008, 03:16:02 PM »
I am also interested in applying tax LLM after I finish my JD.  I am also thinking about applying to UW, GULC, NYU(far reach), and UF.  My first year grade from JD was not very good.  I was in bottom 50%.  I have several questions about the admission and the program at each school.

1.  If I want to get into the tax LLM right after finishing JD, how competitive is it to get into one of those schools mentioned above?  If I take a lot of tax courses at my current school, how important are the grades from those classes?

2.  I know the admission for tax ata NYU, GULC, and FC are pretty competitive since they're the top 3, but how competitive is the UW tax LLM? 

3.  Do you know if most or all graduates do well after finishing at one of those tax programs above?  Or is it like the law school scheme all over again where big firms hire only top 10% and so on.

Argent

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2008, 10:13:42 PM »
I went to Brooklyn Law and did well and graduated from NYU with an LL.M in tax. It took me four years at night and I only got one A (advanced corporate tax problems)during the entire program.

I barely made it through the program at the end as I found it to be that draining. I had class two nights a week, worked 50 hours and then spent weekends studying.

I think I was right about the middle of the class. The students are bright overachievers. A buddy of mine who graduated ahead of me at Brooklyn had to get a C+ in his last class to graduate. Today, he doing great and is a top flight tax lawyer.

The NYU degree is invaluable for someone like me. As good as Brooklyn may be, the value of the NYU pedigree in my instance is almost incalculable. I added a CPA certificate to the mix and I have managed to do really well by middle class standards($5 million in past 6 years; $300k average the prior 5 years). To be completely honest, I do believe that if I didn't have the LL.M., I would not made 1/3rd of what I've made.

If I had gone to NYU or the like for a JD and done well, I think the differnce would have been small to nil.

Hope that helps.


PJP

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Re: Tax LLM
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2008, 08:46:19 PM »
I went to Brooklyn Law and did well and graduated from NYU with an LL.M in tax. It took me four years at night and I only got one A (advanced corporate tax problems)during the entire program.

I barely made it through the program at the end as I found it to be that draining. I had class two nights a week, worked 50 hours and then spent weekends studying.

I think I was right about the middle of the class. The students are bright overachievers. A buddy of mine who graduated ahead of me at Brooklyn had to get a C+ in his last class to graduate. Today, he doing great and is a top flight tax lawyer.

The NYU degree is invaluable for someone like me. As good as Brooklyn may be, the value of the NYU pedigree in my instance is almost incalculable. I added a CPA certificate to the mix and I have managed to do really well by middle class standards($5 million in past 6 years; $300k average the prior 5 years). To be completely honest, I do believe that if I didn't have the LL.M., I would not made 1/3rd of what I've made.

If I had gone to NYU or the like for a JD and done well, I think the differnce would have been small to nil.

Hope that helps.



Agent, thank you for sharing your story.  So are you working at a law firm or as an in-house?  Do you know anyone who is not doing as well after NYU Tax LLM but with lower ranked JD?  I heard that a lot of people at NYU LLM did well in their law school or went to a top school that they already had an option of working at biglaw before the LLM.  These people probably have no problems in their career.  What about people with a lower ranked JD or didn't do well enough for biglaw (especially 1st yr) but still somehow managed to get into NYU or GUCL for Tax LLM?  I wonder how they do after LLM.