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Author Topic: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better  (Read 10218 times)

TheDudeMan

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #30 on: February 02, 2009, 11:51:00 PM »
DudeMan,

Thanks for your input. 

Yes, we realize we may be excluding a wide sector of bright, talented, ambitious students.  Unfortunately, the problem we face is we need a fair standard to compare candidates with high disparities of experience -- it is not that useful to rely on class rank when comparing a 1L to a 3L, for example.  Nor is it especially fair to have a predefined list of law schools, because very talented students go to "lesser" schools for any number of reasons. 

With respect to our prestige, that's not something we will ever worry about.  Our goal is to deliver top service to law firms at an affordable price, and provide a meaningful, flexible PT employment option for current law students. 

Best,

Will



But you realize delivering the service you seek is impossible when you are using a meaningless standard such as the LSAT lol. 

nealric

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #31 on: February 03, 2009, 12:00:31 AM »
Although I maintain serious doubts about the OP's business model, I am 95% sure he is legit after talking with him via PM.
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Susan B. Anthony

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #32 on: February 03, 2009, 12:09:39 AM »
Although I maintain serious doubts about the OP's business model, I am 95% sure he is legit after talking with him via PM.

you must be using a loose version of the term "legit".

Similar to that used here, perhaps?

nealric

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #33 on: February 03, 2009, 12:09:52 AM »
Legit in the sense that I don't think this is a flame or scam. I think he really is planning to do what he says he is.
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Bob Loblaw Esq.

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #34 on: February 03, 2009, 06:09:06 AM »


We charge the clients $50-$60 an hour.  We are the ones paying the students. 



even if you offered a quality, reputable service, what small firm would actually pay $50-60/hr for law student research anyway? i would imagine your target clientele probably bills $100/hr or less.  You might find a sucker or two, but I promise you, no reasonable small firm atty would pay $50-60/hr to babysit a law student. 

vap

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #35 on: February 03, 2009, 09:04:17 AM »
To the OP:  please take all this poo-pooing on your project as constructive criticism.  Most of these posts are coming off as very negative, but I think your idea in general sounds marketable. 

Sure, you might need to iron out some kinks.  I agree with Bob: $50-$60 is a lot for a small firm to pay for research conducted by a law students (which will be less efficient).  You might want to consider billing by the project rather than the hour.  That is, a law firm has a research issue, and they would pay X to have somebody else do it; you farm it out for 33% less (or a larger profit, if the math works).  You could require students to log their hours, too, if the attorneys want this info (for reasonable billing).  Of course, if you've already got firms lined up willing to pay $50-$60/hour for student research, more power to you!

I also think that small firms will be able to hire students directly for nothing or less than $25/hour, so you're best bet would be to focus on small firms in less urban areas (let's say, for example, more than an hour's drive from any law school). 

I've got to agree about LSAT as a selection tool.  The LSAT, combined with UGPA, has a mild correlation with 1L grades.  I don't think there is much else to be gleaned from the LSAT, unless you are thinking that grades will be predictive of research skills.  But then you should just rely on grades rather than LSAT. 

Stole Your Nose!

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #36 on: February 03, 2009, 09:09:37 AM »
Actually, no, this is generally a bad idea.  The only way it works is if students cheat Westlaw or Lexis out of money.  Most attorneys out on their own highly value their reputation; they can't advise their clients based on something that students didn't even shepherdize or do a Lexis search on. I'd rather hire someone directly for cheaper or free and let them use my firm's lexis/westlaw capabilities. Also, the small firms aren't going to get rid of their legal assistants. OP's idea is that they can drop their Legal Ass't, hire his firm and voila! money is saved and money is made!  But sole practitioners with any kind of a business stream have to have legal ass'ts to keep it going.  They'd rather research be done by someone already on salary.

And there will have to be disclaimers all over the place on OP's website.

Ricephilx

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #37 on: February 03, 2009, 10:13:18 AM »
Folks,

Thanks for the comments.

1) This is not intended to replace an in-office legal assistant, more a safety valve that allows a lawyer to get help from a smart law student on an as needed basis.  There is no subscription fee or retainer for the client -- it is simply by the hour. 

2) Firms based in India do this exact kind of work, only they do not have a US law education, and they charge $60-70.  Many of these firms are quite successful, and have big name US clients.  Look up "Legal process outsourcing" to learn more. 

3) Firms can pass on fees like this to their clients, as a separate line item.  If for whatever reason the in-office legal assistant is unavailable, or perhaps just not that bright (remember they only make $42k a year on average), the client saves money because they aren't paying for the lawyer to do research or other lower-level legal tasks.

4) There are too many hangups about the Lexis/Westlaw issue.  I'm sure there is a way to do it without lugging around books, and without going to prison. 

Best,

Will
acelawstudents@gmail.com


Stole Your Nose!

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #38 on: February 03, 2009, 10:29:59 AM »
1) Your target firms will very rarely need "safety valves" that are above and beyond an in-office legal assistant.  This doesn't at all fit with what you described as your motivation ("they were paying me and I only worked sometimes!" = replace you with an as-needed service), and it really exhibits a failure to understand your potential client base. The only thing that you could possibly be offering that they would be willing to pay $50-60/hr for is free Lexis or Westlaw usage.  Also, if I were working for you as an independent contractor, I would undercut you in a heartbeat. Thankfully, I am doing OK and have no need to join a scheme to defraud Lexis or Westlaw or provide shoddy outdated shoestring research to poor firms.

2) The firms in India actually are attracting mega firms with mega cases. You will not get mega firms with mega cases.  A large percentage of the outsourcing is back office functions rather than legal research. You also fundamentally fail to understand the economics of LPO or the big law firm.  Finally, these are lawyers that they are outsourcing to, not legal students.  And these are lawyers who will have access to Lexis or Westlaw, not library books. LPO has salaried employees who bill, and the company provides the overhead expenses, including access to legal research tools.

3) You clearly know absolutely nothing about legal research.  It is shocking that you claim to have worked as a "legal research assistant" without knowing this. Almost all legal research, even statutory construction, will involve case law research. Unless you want it done via google search, which is not a product you can have your independent contractors handing in to anyone and not something anyone would pay for, it has to be done using Lexis or Westlaw. They have a monopoly on legal research for a reason. Flat rate plans (or X # of searches/minutes plans) are available but individual or additional searches can cost hundreds of dollars.

Hope you've got a good lawyer drafting your contracts (or you could just outsource them to law students!!!) because you are exposing yourself to some liability here and lawyers are a very litigious bunch.

Stole Your Nose!

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Re: Top Law Students Needed to Fill PT Positions -- 167 LSAT or Better
« Reply #39 on: February 03, 2009, 10:43:55 AM »
Also, as you probably don't know, your target law student audience ("top law students" -- which does not equal LSAT) makes $3100 a week in the summer and are busting tail during the school year on law review, innocence project, moot court, mock trial, etc. Any student that you need, doesn't need you.