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Author Topic: Is law school possible at 62?  (Read 10392 times)

john4040

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #30 on: September 15, 2010, 03:40:28 PM »
Realistically, if you have lived 62 and with all of that life experience you want to be a lawyer don't let some 25 year kid tell you what is best for you. 

Yes, because a person who hasn't attended law school knows more about the cost and rigors of law school than someone who has.  Nice logic - they teach you that at your T4?

You only have one chance at life and there is nothing worse than asking yourself what would have happened had I done X Y or Z. Obviously, use a bit of common sense. However, going to law school is not like throwing 100,000 on Red 18 in Vegas.

There is something worse than "asking yourself what would have happened had I done X Y or Z."  That something is throwing money after a proposition that is a sure loser just to find out that the proposition was a loser.  I can ask myself what would happen if I flush money down the toilet, but I don't have to actually flush it down to find out.  Same thing applies in OP's situation.

You're right, beginning law school at 63 is not like throwing $100,000 on Red 18 in Vegas - it's like plunking $100,000 on the table and simply walking away.  Sometimes you have to use a bit of common sense.

However, people like John4040 who go to top schools think you can only do any good if you work in BigLaw or for a judge.

Where have I said, or even implied, such a thing?  I'm tired of you jumping into threads without addressing arguments which are of legitimate concern.  Once again, you throw out bald assertions and bring nothing to the discussion.  You see reply #4?  Address my arguments, add something relevant to the discussion (specifically answering why a 62 year old should go to law school), or STFU.

bigs5068

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #31 on: September 15, 2010, 04:34:28 PM »
You never did say anything about the Biglaw etc so I was wrong to say that. Anyways, to argue your points.

1. Debt.   Unless you're loaded or get a substantial scholarship, you'll have to deplete your retirement / other assets.  I note that you plan on going the scholarship route... don't count on it.  Kids are much smarter on average (more educated) than those in your generation.  If you do manage to beat the LSAT curve and get a substantial scholarship, realize that scholarships are difficult to maintain at T3s and T4s;

Debt-He can probably get a scholarship, which are hard to maintain at tier 3's and 4's. However, he could go to a state school i.e. Florida International University, CUNY, there is a long list where tuition is only 10k or so. Or if he wanted to move to California the CBA schools have an extremely cheap price. I would not recommend going to a tier 1 school and paying full price at his age. Particularly since the typical OCI route will not work for someone who is 62

2. Time.   Go do something that is more useful for society - you don't have much time left.  Lawyers rarely see the fruits of their labor and in litigation, everyone tends to lose.  Lawyers do not cure others, they do not produce products that benefit society, and only the best and most experienced attorneys get the opportunity to become agents for significant societal change;

As he said what should he do everyone always says no matter what you do it is a waste of time, but as he said he wants to be lawyer. If being a lawyer is something he wants to do then going to law school is an excellent use of his time. Sitting around watching Larry King is a waste of time if he wants to be a lawyer. As you lawyers can do a lot of harm, but also a lot of good. As I mentioned you can help people in little ways like I did with my two friend's whose landlords were trying to rip them off insanely. The landlord was clearly wrong and I helped them no litigation my name is not in the paper etc, but what I learned helped my two friends from getting screwed. There are numerous ways the law can be used to help people and it doesn't need to be in litigation. He might not ever be a congressmen, judge, or mayor. However, he could join one of the many public interest groups particularly for Elder law, since I am sure elder clients would much rather talk to a 62 year old then some naive 25 year old kid like me.

3. Age.    No firm will hire you at your age - you're not profitable.  It'll take you 3 years to complete law school and it will take you another 5 years to learn how to properly litigate (protip:  Law school does NOT teach you how to be a lawyer).  You will therefore have to go solo.  It takes a long time to develop a client base by yourself.  Are you willing to run yourself ragged trying to develop a client base, run your practice,  and take a monetary hit for the first few years?;

No FIRM probably will hire him at his age. As I said before he could join public interest groups, because people might be more comfortable talking to a older person than a young kid like me or you. Maybe he can go Solo, maybe he is a really hard working person who has started two businesses by himself who knows. I have met 62 year old people that have more energy than me and I have met 24 year olds that are the laziest people in the world. Just because someone is 62 doesn't mean they can't work hard.

Another thing a 62 year old might do is learn Wills & Trusts extremely well. Again, I would be more comfortable with an older person drafting my will, because I would think they would understand the consequences importance of the will better than a punk 25 year old like me or you-(I don't know your age, so just guessing)

4. Lack of Return on Investment.  Self explanatory, considering the above analysis.

Again, what does this person want out of it. Maybe money is not what he wants. Not everything is dollars and cents. Even so there is possibility of making money as I said before maybe he will learn how to draft Wills & Trusts very well.I would also imagine at his age a lot of people think about drafting wills and he has friends that would rather use someone they trust and know their family situation opposed to some random attorney.

Also, it is not a waste of time if what he wants to do is be a lawyer. If that is his goal then going to law school is an excellent use of his time.  Again, maybe he has a lot of time on his hands maybe kids are out of the house if he has any and he needs an intellectual challenge. Some people don't like to be retired and sit around all day. What is a waste of time to one person is not to another and it is subjective. Let him decide what is or is not a waste of time, since I am sure he has heard that law school is somewhat difficult and time consuming.


5. Law school & Bar Exam will drain you physically and emotionally.  Do you want some young professor treating you like his b1tch? Are you ready to study more than you've ever studied before?  Is your husband ready to play second fiddle to your studies?  Do you feel like taking the bar exam at ~66?

Again, I am sure it is not a news flash to him that law school and the bar are difficult. I am also sure that over 62 years he has had some shi**y job. Not all professors treat you like a b***h some do and some don't. In all honestly, law school is hard, but it is not impossible people get through it. Again, you don't know what the OP has been through. Maybe they fought in Vietnamn and were a Navy Seal and they will laugh at how easy law school is compared to that sh**. Again, you are just making assumptions about this person. Do they even have a husband/wife? If they do maybe they have a pursuit they would like to take up as well instead of them both sitting around the house. That is why law school is an individual decision and what works for one person might not work for another. I am sure all the points you made are things he considered and are not newsflashes.

At your age, you cannot reasonably expect to have a profitable career in the law.  The only benefits you will get from law school are self gratification and the ability to analyze problems in a logical manner.  Is the intrinsic value of a law school education worth it to you?

He might have a profitable career for the reasons I mentioned above or he might not. Employment is very subjective and maybe a firm wants older people that are steady who the hell knows. Even if those firms are not there self-gratification is important. Maybe this is something he has wanted to do his whole life and now he has the time and money to do it. Maybe he has a specific cause he wants to support in his local community. If you are certified by the bar and you have the ability to take on clients you can do somethings. You can get clients if you know people. Assuming at 62 he has not been a complete a-hole and Hermit he probably knows some people that will have legal questions. A lot of them can be answered rather simply if you have a legal education and maybe helping people is something he wants to do. Or maybe he just plain wants an intellectual challenge.

Bottom line it is his subjective choice nothing you mentioned is news to anyone going to law school. It is expensive, time consuming, and difficult. Everybody knows that, but people choose to do it. Honestly, almost anything worth doing is time consuming and difficult. Let the OP make their own choices based on their own experiences and don't go on an 8 page rant about how miserably someone will fail without knowing anything about the person. Of course details the risks, but always give the pros and cons and let people figure it out.

For just anyone at any age considering law school there are pros and cons to it. It is outrageously expensive and I still cannot see how any school from Harvard to Cooley charges what they do. It is difficult, but not impossible. However, you need to be committed and hard working to get through and pass the bar. That is the bare minimum to being a moderately competent attorney. If you are scared of a challenge go get a job as a cashier, or admin etc there is nothing wrong with that and plenty of people do it. Even if you are up to the challenge and graduate and pass the bar you are going into a competitive world where everybody was smart and motivated enough to pass the bar. So finding jobs is difficult and just doing those two things is not really going to impress anybody and nobody is going to hand you a damn thing. To anyone who has played competitive sports it is the same deal. On any varsity basketball or football team everybody is tall, strong, fast, etc, but there can only be one starting quarterback or center etc and you are going to have to fight to get that spot and keep it. That is because there is someone just as good as you right behind and you ready to take your spot in a heartbeat. A legal career is demanding and hard, but generally anything worth doing is demanding and hard. Good luck to anyone who chooses to go down the law school path.

john4040

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #32 on: September 15, 2010, 04:41:21 PM »
You never did anything about the Biglaw etc so I was wrong to say that anyways. To argue your points...

Debt-He can probably get a scholarship....

OP is a "she."  Nevertheless, I'll go ahead and assume you actually read the thread.

bigs5068

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #33 on: September 15, 2010, 04:55:44 PM »
The same logic applies if the OP is a he/she. It sounds like they have had some life experience and again let them make their choices. How is going to law school at 62 like leaving 100k on the table in regards to the Vegas analogy. No even if it does not work out SHE will at least have a legal education, which is a marketable skill and hell something to talk about at cocktail parties. If you lose 100k on Red 18 in Vegas it's gone and you are no better for it.

In regards to her time her husband has an intense sales job so SHE has sometime on her hands and with school you can create your own schedule and make time when he is back. Also her kids are grown up, granted back in the house, but they are old enough to fend for themselves. A 62 year old lawyer can be just as effective as 24 year old lawyer and might be better in some instances and worse in others. It might be harder on a 62 year old, but maybe it will be easier I don't know, because I never went to law school as a 62 year old. If an older person wants to talk to her about being an older law student let them, because they know what it is like. You and me are not 62 year old law student's so we don't know what it is like.


john4040

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #34 on: September 15, 2010, 04:57:01 PM »
Debt-He can probably get a scholarship, which are hard to maintain at tier 3's and 4's. However, he could go to a state school i.e. Florida International University, CUNY, there is a long list where tuition is only 10k or so. Or if he wanted to move to California the CBA schools have an extremely cheap price. I would not recommend going to a tier 1 school and paying full price at his age. Particularly since the typical OCI route will not work for someone who is 62.

I agree with every bit of this.

As he said what should he do everyone always says no matter what you do it is a waste of time, but as he said he wants to be lawyer. If being a lawyer is something he wants to do then going to law school is an excellent use of his time. Sitting around watching Larry King is a waste of time if he wants to be a lawyer. As you lawyers can do a lot of harm, but also a lot of good. As I mentioned you can help people in little ways like I did with my two friend's whose landlords were trying to rip them off insanely. The landlord was clearly wrong and I helped them no litigation my name is not in the paper etc, but what I learned helped my two friends from getting screwed. There are numerous ways the law can be used to help people and it doesn't need to be in litigation. He might not ever be a congressmen, judge, or mayor. However, he could join one of the many public interest groups particularly for Elder law, since I am sure elder clients would much rather talk to a 62 year old then some naive 25 year old kid like me.

I absolutely agree.  Law would be an excellent option for OP, however, I fear that she would be much more productive doing something else - and have more money to boot.  Like I previously stated though, if OP can't live without being a lawyer, go for it - but proceed with caution.

No FIRM probably will hire him at his age. As I said before he could join public interest groups, because people might be more comfortable talking to a older person than a young kid like me or you. Maybe he can go Solo, maybe he is a really hard working person who has started two businesses by himself who knows. I have met 62 year old people that have more energy than me and I have met 24 year olds that are the laziest people in the world. Just because someone is 62 doesn't mean they can't work hard.

I really don't think it's an issue of being able to work hard.  No doubt, OP is a hard worker with great aspirations.  She mentioned that she wanted to work in a firm and start her own firm.  I stated that it takes years to develop client relationships and no matter how hard she worked, her efforts would probably not be profitable.

Again, what does this person want out of it. Maybe money is not what he wants. Not everything is dollars and cents. Even so there is possibility of making money as I said before maybe he will learn how to draft Wills & Trusts very well.I would also imagine at his age a lot of people think about drafting wills and he has friends that would rather use someone they trust and know their family situation opposed to some random attorney.
I'm not sure what she wants out of it.  I pointed out that it seemed like she was looking to make a profit and to "legally insulate herself."  I concluded that both of these options were out of the question.  I asked her what she wanted out of it and I have yet to receive an answer.

Again, I am sure it is not a news flash to him that law school and the bar are difficult. I am also sure that over 62 years he has had some shi**y job. Not all professors treat you like a b***h some do and some don't. In all honestly, law school is hard, but it is not impossible people get through it. Again, you don't know what the OP has been through. Maybe they fought in Vietnamn and were a Navy Seal and they will laugh at how easy law school is compared to that sh**. Again, you are just making assumptions about this person. Do they even have a husband/wife? If they do maybe they have a pursuit they would like to take up as well instead of them both sitting around the house. That is why law school is an individual decision and what works for one person might not work for another. I am sure all the points you made are things he considered and are not newsflashes.

I'm not so sure.  I think she legitimately came here to seek advice as to the rigors of law school.

Of course details the risks, but always give the pros and cons and let people figure it out. 

Cons:  See Reply #4.
Pros:  Self-gratification, the ability to think more logically, and admiration of others.

Edit:
The problem with speaking to those in a situation similar to her own is that it is incredibly rare to find those in a similar situation.  She can't exactly go talk to 62 year old practicing attorneys because they usually don't know how law schools are run these days and they aren't aware that costs have skyrocketed.

Roomdo

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #35 on: September 15, 2010, 05:05:40 PM »
So John4040, exactly how old are you and what is your background and status (specifically) that qualifies you to spend all day "advising" prospective law students?

john4040

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #36 on: September 15, 2010, 05:08:12 PM »
So John4040, exactly how old are you and what is your background and status (specifically) that qualifies you to spend all day "advising" prospective law students?

I'm young.  I have applied to, been accepted, and performed exceptionally well in law school.  I'm now a federal judicial law clerk.  There are no pending motions in my court at the moment.

Roomdo

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #37 on: September 15, 2010, 05:19:36 PM »
Then you are not  a practicing attorney at any level in a law firm?

john4040

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #38 on: September 15, 2010, 05:29:53 PM »
Then you are not  a practicing attorney at any level in a law firm?

I am a practicing attorney.  I don't practice in a law firm.  I draft rulings and advise my judge as to the proper disposition of cases.

Roomdo

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Re: Is law school possible at 62?
« Reply #39 on: September 15, 2010, 06:02:20 PM »
I am hopeful that you are at least at a grade 11 and higher than step 1 considering that $120,000 student loan. Government employment is only good for one thing, benefits. Make sure you get your share.  Been there- Done that .

To be perfectly honest  you really had me going- I was hoping to hear from someone  more "seasoned " who was willing to share some of their experiences.  I would not begin to expect that you could comprehend the desire or motivation of a person having lived my life experiences for the last 62 years.  But I appreciate your efforts to enlighten me. Word of advice: save it for someone younger more your age. Meanwhile I will continue to explore my options, which believe it or not, even at my age I have many of.  Also, it is interesting you don't give your age and I give mine all the time. You should be proud of what you have accomplished to this point and not try to feel you have to compensate.  A person's age is seldom representative of  their value but rather life's journey.