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Author Topic: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?  (Read 1903 times)

scooby21322

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Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« on: June 17, 2010, 04:12:48 PM »
So, I've heard bad things about taking contracts jobs, but this is a seriously bad job market.  I just got an interview for one of these kinds of jobs (I sent in a resume not expecting to hear back, but surprisingly I did).  Would it be a bad idea to go to work with one of these companies and keep looking for a job that would be more desirable?  I never thought I'd consider stooping this low, but it seems like this would be a better option than sitting at home with no job.  Anyway, everyone's thoughts would be appreciated. 

bigs5068

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2010, 06:31:07 PM »
Obviously go to the interview at the minimum especially if you are not doing anything. If the people seem cool it probably won't be that bad and if it at least seems tolerable making money is better than sitting around doing nothing.  Obviously, you can look for a job and accept one if you have this contract job as I find it unlikely they would waste time suing or anything like that if you left the job.

If you just graduated I wouldn't think a contract job would not be that awful.  That is the way it is anything you do  you start from the bottom and work your way up.

scooby21322

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2010, 07:01:43 PM »
I should add that I would want to do litigation of some form (whether it be civil or criminal).  I'm just worried about making myself less marketable by taking a job like this.  Would that be something to worry about?

bigs5068

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2010, 07:45:22 PM »
Well being a one 1L in transition to my 2L and having approximately two years of paralegal experience I know absolutely everything one could possibly know about the legal profession. That was purely sarcastic, but I would not think it would hurt you to have any kind of experience if you want to be a DA they probably will not say well this guy worked as a contract lawyer he must be hired and I would not think they would burn your resume since you  did a contract job either. I think most attorneys struggle out of the gate and if it comes up in an interview at some point you would just say I needed a job and it wasn't my lives ambition to be a contract attorney, but I had bills to pay.  I have gone on interviews and even at my job they all say I remember my first legal job it sucked. That is the way it is once you graduate you are thrown into the real world and you have to start at the bottom no matter what field you are in. Even Lebron James had to do all the B.S. rookie stuff i.e getting donuts for the team etc. Bottom line you have to pay your dues no matter who you are or where you came from.

I am sure there is wiser advice out there, but if you are not working at all and if you have law school debt to pay I would start doing something to make the numbers in your bank account go up even if it is way less than ideal. The real world kicks everybody's ass at the end of the day and you will have to do less than glamorous stuff as an attorney. That is my view on things, but I have limited knowledge.


nealric

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2010, 05:11:16 PM »
Are you talking about doc-review jobs?

Those are basically placeholder jobs that allow you to earn money. They do not develop any useful skills. Doc review is basically just clicking "responsive" and "non responsive" as random emails and corporate document pop up on your screen. Any high-school graduate could do it.

It won't kill your career to do it for a very short term, but keep hustling for something substantive. Someone who's been a doc reviewer for too long will become less marketable.
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the white rabbit

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2010, 09:20:09 AM »
I know folks, both friends and people my firm has used, who have transitioned from these types of jobs to full time substantive legal jobs.  I don't think it's a career-killer to do short term.
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Thane Messinger

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2010, 03:47:40 PM »
Are you talking about doc-review jobs?

Those are basically placeholder jobs that allow you to earn money. They do not develop any useful skills. Doc review is basically just clicking "responsive" and "non responsive" as random emails and corporate document pop up on your screen. Any high-school graduate could do it.

It won't kill your career to do it for a very short term, but keep hustling for something substantive. Someone who's been a doc reviewer for too long will become less marketable.

As always, Miguel is quite right.  It's relatively neutral in terms of a legal career (and some interviewers will understand, given the market), but it's definitely a placeholder.  More importantly, it will bring in an income, and it will lift your spirits (with the right attitude).  It's definitely not glamorous, but--key point for everyone--NO law job is glamorous in the first few years.  (Okay, there's the one sports law job the senior partner's kid gets, and the art law job for the chief justice's nephew.)  Use this as a stepping stone, and if you get it, it's a way to stay busy, connected, and motivated. 

Good luck,

Thane.

PS:  If you'd like a picture of what this type of work and "office" is like (assuming it is a doc-review-type position), there is a hilarious chapter in Slacker's Guide to Law School that gives what I assume is a very accurate picture.

bigs5068

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Re: Contracts Job-How bad of an idea is it?
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2010, 04:06:38 PM »
 It's definitely not glamorous, but--key point for everyone--NO law job is glamorous in the first few years.


Thank you for saying that common sense thing that law or any career is not glamorous when you start out.  80% of people on this board and JDundergrond don't seem to understand that basic concept.