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Author Topic: Well, I got into law school...  (Read 9316 times)

calgal27

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Well, I got into law school...
« on: June 22, 2011, 08:46:14 PM »
I was accepted at Birmingham School of Law.  I live in the Atlanta area and Birmingham is about a 2.5 hour drive.  It's a Saturday program.  3 classes every Saturday.    They are a state approved school, not an ABA approved school so I will only be able to take the bar in Alabama.    Not a big deal for me. 

So, I will give it a try.  I have wanted to go to law school for a long time so now is the time to take a chance. 


Nic Benny

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2011, 10:08:53 PM »
I've never heard of such a program. 
Does this mean you will only get to practice law in AL?

cusc2011

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2011, 07:37:35 PM »
Hi Calgal27 - I will be attending Birmingham School of Law on the weekends as well commuting in from another state.  I'm 40 yrs old with a very successful career that pays very well.  I just wanted to point out that Georgia has a waiver process for Non ABA graduates, the current waiver process was implemented in Feb. 2008.   Since, then there has been a Birmingham School of Law graduate and a Concord Law School graduate.  The waiver process consist of about 6 steps that has to be followed exactly as explained but obtainable.  The good thing about attending Birmingham School of Law is that you wont have any law school loans to pay back once you finish because you pay as you go.  Also, the majority of BSOL students work full-time jobs and are already established in the current careers.

fortook

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2011, 11:03:03 PM »
Yes, that means she can only practice in the state, unless AL has reciprocity with other states then she may have more options down the road.  Each state is different when it comes to non ABA schools and only a few states accredit law schools themselves, rather than go solely with ABA accreditation.  I was always told to avoid non ABA schools, but I have met some successful attorneys who went to non ABAs. It's an interesting quirk.
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cusc2011

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2011, 12:12:18 PM »
The GA bar wavier process is available to all Non ABA graduates and graduates from a foreign law school, reciprocity doesn't apply for Non ABA graduates as it relates to the GA Bar.  Waiver process consist of 6 detail steps in which you have to thoroughly state your case and have an ABA Dean or someone appointed by the Dean to conduct an evaluation of the program and write a letter to the GA Bar.  Even if  the requirements are met, finally decision is up to the GA Bar.  I don't know how many people have gone through this process but I am aware of 2 people that have gone through the process since the wavier rule has been in effect.

calgal27

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2011, 10:10:49 PM »
Hi Calgal27 - I will be attending Birmingham School of Law on the weekends as well commuting in from another state.  I'm 40 yrs old with a very successful career that pays very well.  I just wanted to point out that Georgia has a waiver process for Non ABA graduates, the current waiver process was implemented in Feb. 2008.   Since, then there has been a Birmingham School of Law graduate and a Concord Law School graduate.  The waiver process consist of about 6 steps that has to be followed exactly as explained but obtainable.  The good thing about attending Birmingham School of Law is that you wont have any law school loans to pay back once you finish because you pay as you go.  Also, the majority of BSOL students work full-time jobs and are already established in the current careers.

Hi!  Where are you commuting from?  Since I am 45 (50 by the time I graduate), the last thing I want is a law career.  I honestly would love to get a law degree, sit in a law firm and just do research and write brief, memos and other things.    My kids are 15 and 12.  My son wants to go to Auburn University ( that would be in 3 years) and my daughter will be off to college not too far after him.  I have no problem if I end up living in Alabama.  But, like you said, there is always the waiver for Georgia and there is always the federal court system.  I cannot believe a Concord graduate actually go through the waiver process.   

Hope to meet you at BSOL!

like_lasagna

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2011, 09:18:06 PM »
Mandatory mention that this is a bad idea. You won't listen. Carry on.

Duncanjp

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2011, 02:56:19 AM »
The ABA student community is a swell group of people to get to know, but honestly, who can deny that there is a surfeit of unemployed, deeply-indebted, ambitious young ABA graduates out there who don't know whether to go uphill or down bearing the chains of their coveted interstate law degree? How many ABA graduates would not be more than happy finding steady work in their home town alongside some blue collar, state-accredited attorney?

A substantial number of attorneys here in California, including judges and district attorneys, received their J.D.s from state law schools. They passed the exam. Becoming a lawyer simply means you've read society's rules and know how to play the game. It's becoming less elitist all the time to be an attorney, and the massive debt that attending an ABA school creates, just so you can become another unemployed lawyer who has hypothecated the next 20 years of his or her life, needs to be weighed. The point is, there is no dishonor in attending a state-accredited law school. Every single person who passes the Bar exam in his or her given state hopes to find meaningful employment in the field. Some do, some don't. Getting the gig is the object, not bragging about the train that got you there. Granted, if you're still in your 20s or 30s and you want to go to law school, you should prepare hard for the LSAT and get your tail into an ABA school. Absolutely. An ABA degree will help an inexperienced greenhorn get a foot in the door. But if you're over 45, with a family and a mortgage, and you've already established a solid reputation in a given field with a career that could be enhanced, perhaps perfected, by getting a law degree and becoming a member of your state Bar, then forget about an ABA education. You don't need it. It's a waste. A state-accredited school will do nicely and you won't squander three times as much in tuition to serve clients who couldn't care less one way or the other where you went to law school. After you reach about 40-45 years old, the object is singular: get the license. Get The License. Period. Then you can wield it in your field of expertise to parry opponents and any who stand in your way.

Ha. I wish I'd said that.

like_lasagna

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2011, 08:45:29 PM »
The ABA student community is a swell group of people to get to know, but honestly, who can deny that there is a surfeit of unemployed, deeply-indebted, ambitious young ABA graduates out there who don't know whether to go uphill or down bearing the chains of their coveted interstate law degree? How many ABA graduates would not be more than happy finding steady work in their home town alongside some blue collar, state-accredited attorney?

A substantial number of attorneys here in California, including judges and district attorneys, received their J.D.s from state law schools. They passed the exam. Becoming a lawyer simply means you've read society's rules and know how to play the game. It's becoming less elitist all the time to be an attorney, and the massive debt that attending an ABA school creates, just so you can become another unemployed lawyer who has hypothecated the next 20 years of his or her life, needs to be weighed. The point is, there is no dishonor in attending a state-accredited law school. Every single person who passes the Bar exam in his or her given state hopes to find meaningful employment in the field. Some do, some don't. Getting the gig is the object, not bragging about the train that got you there. Granted, if you're still in your 20s or 30s and you want to go to law school, you should prepare hard for the LSAT and get your tail into an ABA school. Absolutely. An ABA degree will help an inexperienced greenhorn get a foot in the door. But if you're over 45, with a family and a mortgage, and you've already established a solid reputation in a given field with a career that could be enhanced, perhaps perfected, by getting a law degree and becoming a member of your state Bar, then forget about an ABA education. You don't need it. It's a waste. A state-accredited school will do nicely and you won't squander three times as much in tuition to serve clients who couldn't care less one way or the other where you went to law school. After you reach about 40-45 years old, the object is singular: get the license. Get The License. Period. Then you can wield it in your field of expertise to parry opponents and any who stand in your way.

Ha. I wish I'd said that.

if you do this, please do not whine when you do not get a job

employers know that it's more difficult to get into an ABA school. you say there are tons of unemployed graduates of ABA accredited schools. this should mean something.

Duncanjp

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Re: Well, I got into law school...
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2011, 01:48:30 AM »
The ABA student community is a swell group of people to get to know, but honestly, who can deny that there is a surfeit of unemployed, deeply-indebted, ambitious young ABA graduates out there who don't know whether to go uphill or down bearing the chains of their coveted interstate law degree? How many ABA graduates would not be more than happy finding steady work in their home town alongside some blue collar, state-accredited attorney?

A substantial number of attorneys here in California, including judges and district attorneys, received their J.D.s from state law schools. They passed the exam. Becoming a lawyer simply means you've read society's rules and know how to play the game. It's becoming less elitist all the time to be an attorney, and the massive debt that attending an ABA school creates, just so you can become another unemployed lawyer who has hypothecated the next 20 years of his or her life, needs to be weighed. The point is, there is no dishonor in attending a state-accredited law school. Every single person who passes the Bar exam in his or her given state hopes to find meaningful employment in the field. Some do, some don't. Getting the gig is the object, not bragging about the train that got you there. Granted, if you're still in your 20s or 30s and you want to go to law school, you should prepare hard for the LSAT and get your tail into an ABA school. Absolutely. An ABA degree will help an inexperienced greenhorn get a foot in the door. But if you're over 45, with a family and a mortgage, and you've already established a solid reputation in a given field with a career that could be enhanced, perhaps perfected, by getting a law degree and becoming a member of your state Bar, then forget about an ABA education. You don't need it. It's a waste. A state-accredited school will do nicely and you won't squander three times as much in tuition to serve clients who couldn't care less one way or the other where you went to law school. After you reach about 40-45 years old, the object is singular: get the license. Get The License. Period. Then you can wield it in your field of expertise to parry opponents and any who stand in your way.

Ha. I wish I'd said that.

if you do this, please do not whine when you do not get a job

employers know that it's more difficult to get into an ABA school. you say there are tons of unemployed graduates of ABA accredited schools. this should mean something.

That's my point: it does mean something. It means a lot of people are being suckered into blowing enormous sums of money by the lure of a false hope that having an ABA degree will place them fat in the middle of a lucrative position in an office suite atop San Francisco or New York. Or that merely having an ABA degree guarantees them that they'll land a job. No degree guarantees anybody anything: you make of it what you can. But whatever the benefits and greater opportunities of having an ABA degree may be, the returns drop precipitously for older students, especially those with years of experience who have already forged careers in particular fields. For us, a state-accredited school is just fine. My professors are all judges and practicing attorneys. They know what they're talking about and they tend to be enthusiastic communicators. They have also not hidden the fact that statistically, the A-B students are the ones who pass the Bar exam. Students in a state-accredited school with a 2.0 GPA do tend to have problems passing. Regardless, I see absolutely no reason to join the stampede of 20-somethings into massive debt when you are considering law school at 45-50 unless you have money to burn. The prestige of the ABA degree will not pay off. And if you do not intend to relocate to another state, the ABA benefits diminish even further.

If you're 25 or 30, sure, get the best education you can afford. If I were 20 years younger, I would definitely set my sights on an ABA school by spending six months or a year preparing for the LSAT. I went to UC Davis and got great grades as an undergraduate. It's not my philosophy in life to settle for less than that of which I'm capable. But I'm also a realist. If you've established yourself in a worthwhile career that could be enhanced by admission to your State Bar Association, then why on Earth would you want to blow all that money on an ABA education? It would be a total waste. At this stage of the game, it's only about getting the license. Nothing else. I may have squandered some time in my life, but I'm not about to waste my money. The reality is, very few employers are likely to hire an older law school graduate solely on the basis of where he or she attended law school. If you're young with no experience in a field, then all you've got is your degree. Make it the best degree you can. But my resume hinges on the 20 years of experience I've gained in my field. A J.D. will enhance my resume, but it won't form the cornerstone of it, ABA or not. And it would show an incredible lack of vision on my part to take a step backwards in my career now by accepting a position as a public defender or an associate attorney somewhere at half my current salary. Not to mention the disappointment that my wife would rain down on my head for the loss of income.

And regarding whining, frankly, the only whining I ever hear is from the multitudes of deeply indebted ABA graduates out there scamblogging about how they can't find work to pay off their school loans. I've never heard any state-accredited law school graduates griping about their debt and how unfair the world has been to them. Further, I know numerous working attorneys who went to state schools. The J.D. is simply what you make of it. Honestly, a person who wants to go to an ABA law school really needs to consider what he's doing - and why - a lot more carefully than a person entering a state school. Granted, there are law firms that won't even talk to graduates of state-accredited schools. But at my age and station in life, I don't need those law firms. I only want the education and a chance to sit the Bar. When I graduate from my locally reputable, state-accredited law school, I won't owe anybody so much as one thin dime. I'm paying as I go. And I'm in the top 5% after the first year, so I believe I have a reasonable chance of passing the Bar exam on the first try if I can keep on keeping on. We'll see about that later. I know the stats. But the only whining I ever encounter comes from the ranks of disgruntled elitists blaming their ABA schools for their personal failures. Boo hoo. I moonlighted for years to keep my mortgage paid. My patience for whiners is fast evaporating.

As I said, if I were 20 years younger, I would set my sights on an ABA education. I can't dispute the greater prestige of an ABA degree. But if you're an older person who is entrenched in a career already, who merely wants to enhance that career by becoming a licensed attorney, then you don't need an ABA degree. State-accredited law schools serve the purpose fine and they don't put you 30 years in the hole.