Law School Discussion

I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read

Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2007, 05:49:10 PM »
HI, I'm really sorry to hear about your struggles as a 1L, and even sorrier at some of the responses with which you were met the first time you posted.

Many of the Non-Trads on this board are Pre-Law as well; if you want to hit the most number of current students, go to the home page and click on Students and Graduates.

To address your problem, I think aerynn gave the most sound advice. H/she is a current student, I believe.
Also, I don't know if you would be willing to go out on a limb after graduation, but people who are not prime candidates for medium or BIGLAW or who are more independent-spirited have opened their own law offices immediately after passing the bar and have essentially become small business owners who set their own hours.
Obviously, there are trade-offs involved such as needing to work hard to network, hitting up your friends and family for potential client contacts (Hey, they were the ones who pressured you into law school  ;)) and not making a lot of money immediately. However, from the lawyers I know who did this (and they all went to respectable but not highly ranked state schools), it can absolutely be done.

It is my understanding from these "hang-your-own-shingle" lawyers with whom I've been in contact that starting your own small firm is ideal for people without stellar grades or from little-known schools that many mid to big firms wouldn't look twice at. The only people who will affect your work will be your clients, and most small firm clients are low to middle income people who need help with traffic tickets, personal injury, immigration, etc. You would have a chance to start working with real people and helping them with their issues immediately.

Go to the students and grads board and look for posts by Susan Cartier Liebal, or go to her site:

She is a law professor at a school in the Midwest and is eager to help students start their own law firms. She seems really nice and I think will probably respond to you right away.

Best of luck to you and your family


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Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2007, 06:01:01 PM »
I'm also sorry about the obnoxious posters on the other thread. It looks like the serious posters gave some good advice though (except the advice to post your question on xoxo--it's famous for being rude and obnoxious).

I would suggest lots of informational interviews. Since with your credentials your best employment bets will be small group or solo practice make a list of solo practitioners and small firm lawyers and then cold call them or email them. Briefly explain your situation and ask to meet for a half hour or so to discuss their career and get advice. You'll get good advice and start building a network. Do at least 10 of these. I did a few before making the decision to go to law school and the people I talked to were very nice about it and eager to help.

Google "informational interview" and you'll find a lot of articles from career sites that better explain how to set up the interviews and proper etiquette (for example: it's not a job interview so don't ask for a job).

Once you've done that you'll be better able to evaluate your job prospects. Talk them over with your wife then decide whether to stick it out. You're not sunk but you can't just show up to on campus interviews and wait for the job offers to come. Network like crazy (can you shadow a lawyer or do some kind of unpaid internship to get some experience?) and get as many people on your side as possible.

Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2007, 07:21:40 PM »
If you haven't read this thread yet, take a look at it. Lot's of good advice on networking etc.. listed here. Matthies and Rev are very reputable posters on here and are also non-trads at T2 and T3 schools. BTW, a good friend of mine graduated with like a 2.? and joined a small 2 man firm right after passing the bar (7 years ago), small rual town in Arkansas but making a s**tload of money. So it's possible. Don't give up unless you know you won't look back and regret it.


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Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2007, 07:40:51 PM »
Starting your own firm is really good advice, or even starting a small firm with a couple other lawyers.  It depends on your region though.  In NYC you are going to have a tough time, because it is so competitive.  In Oregon, on the other hand, you will do much better.  Do you mind posting what area of the country you are in or even the state?  It can make a big difference in the value of a T3 degree.

Oh, and the problem with the other thread is that there was a post on XOXO that said they were going to use that thread as a way to make fun of regular LSD posters.  Because your account is so new, the LSD posters thought that your account was created by XOXOers who were trying to trap LSDers into giving helpful advice, so they could make fun of those helpful LSD posters.


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Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2007, 07:48:32 PM »
Does your school offer a chance to repeat the first year?  I've read of several tier3/tier4 schools that do it.  The slate is wiped clean, and you basically start over.  It's an expensive option, but considering that you like law school and already know the material, you would be able to do much better.  Just a thought...


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Re: I posted my story in the wrong forum, but please read
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2007, 12:04:28 AM »
I share your pain.  Law School isn't easy for non-trad, especially those of us married with children.  As for advice, probably no one here can really give you anything affirmative since we're all still just beginners in the whole process (even if we are law students). 

I think if you believe your situation will improve and the next 2 years will be better, then keep your chin up because you got 4 more semesters to raise your GPA.  Most people seem to do better in their 2/3 years anyway when the classes are smaller and the professors tend to be nicer with grades.  Some people mention network early and get to know practicing lawyers if you can.  Work for free in your spare time to get your foot in the door if you have to.  And, yes, do make sure you can pass the Bar in your state, otherwise it's 3 years down the drain.  Luckily, even in Ca, it's not the school that will prep you for the Bar, but BarBri that will do the trick.

    Good luck on Finals....