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Author Topic: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?  (Read 3782 times)

ngdo2007

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What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« on: November 18, 2007, 06:41:44 PM »
Just curious, I've heard it's almost impossible to get canned under 2 years.

Runner-up

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2007, 07:35:08 PM »
I find that hard to believe.

Seeing that so many people want to work there, I would imagine they have relative freedom in getting rid of people whose work they don't like.

ngdo2007

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2007, 07:48:45 PM »
I've heard it looks bad for them to fire you so they generally won't in under 2 years- although they may treat you badly to make you quit.

jacy85

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2007, 10:41:43 PM »
I've heard it take forever to get fired, and they'd much rather encourage you to look for something elsewhere rather than actually fire you.  I've heard stories from associates at firms about that one guy who could (or wouldn't) pull their own weight, couldn't write to save their lives, etc.  After 3 years of crappy reviews and crappy work, he still wasn't fired; instead he "took another opportunity"

ngdo2007

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2007, 07:55:39 PM »
I've heard it take forever to get fired, and they'd much rather encourage you to look for something elsewhere rather than actually fire you.  I've heard stories from associates at firms about that one guy who could (or wouldn't) pull their own weight, couldn't write to save their lives, etc.  After 3 years of crappy reviews and crappy work, he still wasn't fired; instead he "took another opportunity"

I've heard similar stories- including one from a guy who was hitting about half of the billable number for close to a year- the firm knew he was leaving to go to grad school so they let it slide...

vaplaugh

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2007, 08:42:45 PM »
Same here.  I knew an attorney who was off her billables for the first nine months (working 40-45 regular hour weeks).  She had a "talking to" by senior partners, and then was put on a trial team (where she worked over 80 hours a week).  The impression I got was that it's pretty easy to ride through the first year.

ngdo2007

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2007, 12:31:50 AM »
Same here.  I knew an attorney who was off her billables for the first nine months (working 40-45 regular hour weeks).  She had a "talking to" by senior partners, and then was put on a trial team (where she worked over 80 hours a week).  The impression I got was that it's pretty easy to ride through the first year.
I tried really hard all summer to find out what people were working to hit close to 2000 (many people were around 1900 or so).  Although this information is carefully guarded, the best I can figure is work 4 to bill 3, so maybe around 2700 hours worked per year- over 50 weeks, that's 54 a week.  Or if you divide it across 48 weeks and try to take the 4 weeks of vacation you supposedly have, it comes to 56 a week.  Anybody else thought about this? 

Alamo79

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Re: What does it take to get fired at biglaw?
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2007, 10:46:59 AM »
The AmLaw midlevel survey states that the avg. midlevel attorney works 56 hours/week and bills 45.  http://www.americanlawyer.com/contents0807.shtml (free registration required to access survey)