The Bar Association of the Perfect WorldLizardBreath -- Tuesday, December 17, 2002 -- 05:08:35 PM
Legal matters. Professional advancement, comparative conditions in differing legal careers, and anything else of concern to the attorneys among us.This thread is tagged: lawyers, job, law
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I could use job hunting advice. I'm looking for something either in NYC (midtown)or in Westchester or Stamford. I'm already in touch with a bunch of headhunters, although I'm always happy to talk to another one if they're both good and reputable. In addition, I'm checking listings in the NYT, the on-line version of the NYLJ (lawjobs.com) and, just in case, vault.com, monster.com and hotjobs.com. And, of course, networking and talking to everyone I know. I've also joined a networking group focused on pt attorneys and their concerns, since that's what I do now and would like to continue to do.
Can anyone think of anything I'm missing?
Don't headhunters concentrate on certain areas - i.e., on big firms, or on corporations, or on mid-size firms? (I don't know, but it seems likely judging by calls I get from headhunters). If so, are all your headhunters firm oriented headhunters? And if they are all firm oriented headhunters, maybe you ought to get a headhunter more tapped in to what corporations want, to complement the firm oriented ones.
Other than that, it seems like you're doing about as much as one can do.
I am a pseudo-lawyer -- that is, a law school graduate who has completed a one year articling stint at a small firm that focused almost entirely on securities law for small venture capital companies, but have not yet written my bar exams (in Ontario). For the past year, I have been doing business and quasi-legal consulting for a couple of companies that I used to work for.
I am leaving Toronto for London, England at the end of January to look for challenging work. I am, however, open to starting a career in any large European or Asian city.
I will eventually do what it takes to qualify for the bar in whatever jurisdiction I end up, but I have no intentions of practicing the law at this point. What I would like to do, ideally, is get some sort of job in the securities industry -- broker, analyst, toady, factotum, whatever -- that is capable of leading to a fulfilling career. Although, I am basically open to anything interesting and challenging at this point, provided it lets me see Europe or Asia and has the capacity to make me a reasonable amount of money.
I will be meeting with headhunters and I know people in England, but any advice from others would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Preferably with nasty little arguments about which schools are really top tier, and ceremonial demotions to a lesser thread if the US News ratings change.
I don't think separate threads are needed for each stage of lawyerdom (which is I think what j. ross was referring to). Better to concentrate input in one place, so lawyer types of all levels can get as wide an input as possible.
I suggest only one rule: Anyone who uses the word vis-a-vis (after this post) should be banned immediately.
Or "hereof". Or the phrase "including, without limitation."
I say this in full knowledge of the fact that these words and phrases are much beloved by denizens of top tier law schools and firms.
Tabouli - I don't know anything about the securities industry or job-hunting in Europe or Asia, but what I'd do with a law degree if I hadn't passed the bar is look into legal temping. The firm I used to work at used a lot of temp lawyers on big cases (for fairly grim, routine stuff, but those are the breaks) and I'm pretty sure they didn't require a bar admission.
This doesn't get you into the securities industry, and I'm not sure that legal temping works the same way overseas, but it might help pay the rent.
The phrases mentioned in the foregoing posts shall be banned in all contexts whatsoever, except where consented to in advance in a writing signed by the Requisite Posters (which shall be defined as 51% of the Posters Who Care About It).
Tabouli, j. ross was just carrying over a joke from another thread (the "Other Boards" thread), about a TT poster who persisted in describing law schools by their U.S. News & World Report "tier" ranking.
Greetings to all legal eagles (of which I am one).
I hadn't passed the bar . . .
Just to clarify, it is not that I didn't pass the bar -- that is, I did not fail the bar. I chose not to go the extra final step of doing my "bar ads" as they call it here in Ontario. The "bar ads" is an additional four months of school that you attend before or after your three years of law school and one year of articling with a firm. During these four months you write a series of exams that add up to your bar exam. I chose not to do my bar ads, because I made shit money articling, was ambivalent about practising and anticipated that I would be leaving Ontario within a year. So, I decided that bar ads were not worth the time and expense at this time. I did not fail.
Phew . . . that feels better.
I may do legal temp stuff for awhile; but, ultimately I would like to get a permanent non-lawyer gig. I also intend to begin my C.F.A. starting in August, regardless of where I end up.
And, hereof and any of its cognates should be banned, along with "notwithstanding" and, for that matter, so should the word "cognates".
I know of a few people in the securities industry with law degrees (one of my law school class mates is working as an investment banker), but most of them have some kind of business degree, usually a joint JD / MBA. I don't know if it works differently in Europe or Asia, but over here I think you'd need to either have some sort of business degree, or you'd need to start at a rather lower level than your law degree would command in a law firm.
And, of course, the securities industry in NY isn't exactly hiring in droves right now anyway. I think right now you'd have a hard time getting a job in NY as a lawyer looking for a non-lawyer securities industry job. Too many MBAs looking for the same job.
Sorry, I did understand what you meant (no bar admission yet, not that you failed the bar) I just didn't convey that understanding. What a hideous sounding admission process Canadians have - the American process (one 2 day exam, usually preceded by six weeks of cramming) sounds like a piece of cake by comparison.
. . . you'd need to start at a rather lower level than your law degree would command in a law firm . . .
I am actually comfortable with that and it is what I expect. My year doing securities law, I think gives me an in. For the last year, I have basically been biding my time, waiting for the equity markets to improve. I intend to supplement my law degree and any entry position by doing my C.F.A. Now is still not the most lucrative time to get into the securities industry, but it is, actually, a good time to learn about what makes the markets tick.
I assumed that is what you meant, but just wanted to clarify. No need to apologize.
I have thought, actually, of writing the New York Bar just so that I can call myself a lawyer -- as opposed to using the goofy phrase "trained as a lawyer" or "educated as a lawyer" -- and, also, because that would squeeze me into one of the NAFTA "professional categories" that would make it easier for me to emigrate to the U.S. if I ever decide to go that route. Ultimately, however, I figure that I will just get whatever credentials I feel are necessary overseas.
The annoying part about the Canadian bar admission process is that it basically assumes that your three years of law school were of little value in terms of practical learning in the law. Oh well. Quebec is the worst by the way -- there it is three years of law school, one year of articling plus another full year of bar school. Mind you, in Quebec, you can get into law school right out of CEGEP (basically two years of community college). So it balances out in that resepct for many Quebec legal eagles.
I'mn staying in tax. Most of the headhunters I'm working with seem to focus primarily on firms of various sizes and mostly in NYC, although I did get the names of a couple of headhunters who place a lot of people in CT/Westchester. If anyone has someone to recommend who does a lot of in-house and/or CT/Westchester, I'd love names.
Or the practically perfect job I interviewed for in September, that told me just before T-giving that they had filled 1 of 2 spots, but hadn't decided on the 2nd yet and didn't tell me any more than that about where I was in the running (although they didn't say no, either) could just MAKE ME A DAMN OFFER.
Tabouli, you may already know this but -- the NY bar requires a rather onerous version of the character and fitness review (after receiving notification that you have passed the bar exam). In my case (I was 3 years out of law school), it required securing 17 different letters (from previous legal employers, all schools attended, all courts admitted to, affidavits of moral character, etc.), all of which had to be notarized, plus digging up all the jobs (legal and non-legal) and all the permanent and temporary addresses I had ever had (since age 18). You then have an in-person character interview and an in-person swearing in, both of which must be conducted in NY and which are conducted on different days.