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Author Topic: Alternatives to a 60-hour work week?  (Read 3816 times)

meaculpa

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Alternatives to a 60-hour work week?
« on: October 03, 2007, 05:41:08 PM »
Hey Everyone,

Anyone aware of any good alternatives to working huge hours for an indefinite amount of time as an attorney? Do so-called "lifestyle firms" exist? What does that even mean? And is government work really any better, and if so, how competitive is it to get?

I know that's alot of questions, but any feedback helps.

Thanks.

oscarsonthepond

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Re: Alternatives to a 60-hour work week?
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2007, 02:41:07 AM »
Government work can be *much* better, but it depends on that particular location (e.g. I talked to one public defender who is a full-time ski instructer during the winter and skis over 100 days a year).  Lifestyle firms are out there - in general they aren't as prestigious as "biglaw", but that may not matter if you find a lifestyle firm that you want to spend the rest of your career at.  To find a lifestyle firm, I'd search NALP for any that requires 1800 or fewer hours per year.  However, even if the stated minimum is low, some firms really only require the minimum while others require many more hours - the only way to find out is to talk to people.  Some firms (even big firms) have flexible hour programs (e.g. work less and get paid less).  This is very firm dependent and the impression I get is that even some firms that say they have good flex programs don't really have them in practice; however, I also get the impression that some really do have great programs where you can bill 1600, 1500, 1400, or even 1300 and get paid accordingly.

jacy85

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Re: Alternatives to a 60-hour work week?
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2007, 10:27:30 AM »
I talked to one public defender who is a full-time ski instructer during the winter and skis over 100 days a year

I'm putting this person on the list of attys that I would never want to represent me...

Budlaw

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Re: Alternatives to a 60-hour work week?
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2007, 05:11:07 PM »
45 grand a year is an alternative to a 60 hour work week.

In all seriousness, not that many firms (outside of New York) require you to work 60 hours a week. It's something more like 50 to 55. So you go in at 8 and get off at 6 or 7. Whats so hard about that? I did that at my summer associate job, and I made it just fine. It's really not too crazy of an idea.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but many government jobs, especially a public defender or prosecutor job, will require you to work more than a 40 hour week, and often times more than a 60 hour week. At least with a private firm you're going to get compensated for your time.