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Author Topic: District Court Clerkship  (Read 4610 times)

intel

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District Court Clerkship
« on: June 14, 2008, 09:43:17 AM »
How competitive are they? What credentials would someone need coming from a T15-20 type school? Do firms award bonuses for these?

intel

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2008, 12:25:31 PM »
jacy85 i know you know the answer please just respond and end the thread.

jacy85

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2008, 09:18:01 AM »
Ha...never intended to be the "clerkship expert."  You can look at some of my other posts about competition - I'd say for the most part, fed district cts are just as competitive as circuit courts (although some districts are obviously less desirable - it's a bit harder to find people to go live in Alaska for 2 years, but not MUCH harder).

Therefore, someone coming from a T-15-20 will need the same credentials as I mentioned in my last few clerkship posts (although some have suggested I've been too lenient in gpa/reank, and they may very well be right):  journal, top 10% (probably higher, though), publication and/or executive board position on journal, stellar recommendations, etc.

Having a judge who is an alum from your school, or who has in the past hired from your school is a huge benefit (for example, Judge Carnes on the 11th Cir tends to prefer hiring Emory grads).

As for whether firms give bonuses for fed district courts, it would depend on the firm.  I don't think I've ever heard of a firm with a clerkship bonus differentiating between district and circuit court clerkships, but maybe they're out there.  I know my firm doesn't, and if you do a federal clerkship, you get a bonus.

intel

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2008, 11:16:39 AM »
interesting...i figured they would be considerably less competitive if only because there are many more judges at the district level and therefore more spots to fight over.

Miss P

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2008, 12:05:43 PM »
My impression is that most are less competitive; clerkships with a few popular judges or judges who sit in popular districts (e.g., SDNY, CDCal) are probably at least as competitive as circuit-level clerkships.  Also, some district courts will hire mainly from local law schools, making those clerkships competitive for "outsiders" applying from so-called national schools.  (You see this in some smaller states.)  Magistrate and bankruptcy clerkships are less competitive and will likely score you the same bonuses, etc.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

vap

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2008, 01:28:13 PM »
interesting...i figured they would be considerably less competitive if only because there are many more judges at the district level and therefore more spots to fight over.

Most are less competitive than circuit courts.

And to be clear, you were inquiring about federal, right?  Because if you're talking about state-level district courts (or whatever the state trial court is called in your state), then yes, they are less competitive, and no, firms do not give bonuses.

Resident CLS Troll

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2008, 01:37:10 PM »
Depends which district court clerkship v. which circuit court clerkship.  SDNY for example is probably more competitive than most circuit court clerkships. 

Miss P

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2008, 01:40:10 PM »
Depends which district court clerkship v. which circuit court clerkship.  SDNY for example is probably more competitive than most circuit court clerkships. 

Is there an echo in here?  :P
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

Resident CLS Troll

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2008, 06:38:37 PM »
Depends which district court clerkship v. which circuit court clerkship.  SDNY for example is probably more competitive than most circuit court clerkships. 

Is there an echo in here?  :P

Sorry, next time I'll just disagree with you for the sake of saying something different.  ;)

T2Loser

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Re: District Court Clerkship
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2008, 08:17:58 AM »
Clerkships in general are competitive. Most federal judges think quite highly of themselves and think that they deserve the pick of the applicants. I think the only place where you see the difference is when it comes to recommendations for deans/ law professors. Every school has a handful of judges that take recommendations for interviewees directly from the law school. If it is a circuit judge, the school will try to only send the best and brightest her way. If it is a district judge, the school might try to force the judge to go deeper into the class, by focusing on people not at the top of the class, but whom have e-board positions on secondary journals.

I applied quite broadly and, oddly enough, got about an equal number of circuit and district court offers. Only 1 judge that called I would categorize as a "safety." The others were all circuit judges in non-elite circuits (3, 5-6, 8, 10-11) and district judges in very prestigious districts. It involved some quick balancing on my part to determine which interviews I would schedule first. I ended up deciding to do circuits first and, now that the process is over, am very glad that I did so.