BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

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yossarian
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby yossarian » Thu May 01, 2014 2:26 pm

Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?

And what's the point for the firm? Why bring someone with 4 - 8 years of experience if not partner track? What is the shelf-life at the new firm?

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby unc0mm0n1 » Thu May 01, 2014 2:28 pm

rayiner wrote:
ph14 wrote:Associates with a few years experience at the firm I worked at had headhunters calling/emailing them frequently and seemed to be in demand. People who left ended up in a variety of different jobs, but the most common landing spot seemed to be smaller firms and boutiques with less pay but better hours. I do know some people who lateraled to other biglaw firms too, as well.


Oh, mid-levels are in very high demand, but almost all of that is from other big law firms. Many firms, especially outside of NYC, are cutting back on entry-level hiring and trying to poach attorneys with a few years of experience from the shops that still have big classes. But finding a non-big law landing spot isn't as easy.


Yeah you're right, at least from my experience. Most of the mid-levels who I looked to for advice had a ton of calls from law firms but when I asked them about in-house, it seemed like they had to do most of the leg work or got calls about in-house "opportunities" that is basically just a call for applications from a big search firm.

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unc0mm0n1
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby unc0mm0n1 » Thu May 01, 2014 2:39 pm

yossarian71 wrote:
Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?

And what's the point for the firm? Why bring someone with 4 - 8 years of experience if not partner track? What is the shelf-life at the new firm?


Actually I think more firms are making partners than before they are just using the two-track partnership shell game. The average number of nonequity partners at an Am Law 100 firm has gone from 19 (in 1994) to 141, with 816 at DLA Piper alone. So you can stay at firms longer without being called an associate (though you really are).

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Blindmelon
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby Blindmelon » Thu May 01, 2014 2:44 pm

unc0mm0n1 wrote:
yossarian71 wrote:
Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?

And what's the point for the firm? Why bring someone with 4 - 8 years of experience if not partner track? What is the shelf-life at the new firm?


Actually I think more firms are making partners than before they are just using the two-track partnership shell game. The average number of nonequity partners at an Am Law 100 firm has gone from 19 (in 1994) to 141, with 816 at DLA Piper alone. So you can stay at firms longer without being called an associate (though you really are).


Exactly, non-equity partners are not partners. Many firms will promote a good number of partners, but behind the veil, they are just locking some associates in to stay at a much lower salary than a partner to just run cases while partners look for more work.

Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?


10K sign on bonus. Most people move between large firms for #1 location (new city), #2 want different work, or #3 got stuck working with less than desirable people.

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rayiner
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 2:45 pm

Making partner isn't quite impossible: http://amlawdaily.typepad.com/amlawdail ... tners.html.

A four-year sample starting in 2008 shows 5,000 promotions, or about 1,250 per year, at a sampling of 179 Am Law 200 firms. That includes one probably good year (2008) and several bad ones (2009, 2010, 2011). That's out of probably 6,000 people going into Am Law 200 firms at an entry level each year.

Of course, that includes non-equity partners. Obviously, it continues to get harder to get equity. I don't think that trend is necessarily bad, though. Firms are moving to a diamond-shaped leverage model: http://lawyermetrics.com/2013/12/03/the ... unraveling. That means fewer associates coming in (total NALP summer associates down by more than 50% from 2002 to 2012), but given that Am Law 200 headcount is relatively stable, that also means less incentive to push associates out each year.

I mean, it's bad in the sense that back in the day, those non-equity partners would've been equity service partners, doing the same work but for more money...
Last edited by rayiner on Thu May 01, 2014 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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IAFG
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby IAFG » Thu May 01, 2014 2:46 pm

What's so fucking great about making (nonlockstep) partner tho

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rayiner
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 2:50 pm

IAFG wrote:What's so fucking great about making (nonlockstep) partner tho


That's a separate issue, of course. Being a non-equity partner or even an equity partner in an eat-what-you-kill shop is like being a senior associate for an indefinite period. The firm needs you, because they can bill you out at a high rate, but you're very expensive leverage that will be the first on the chopping block when times get tough.

But, non-equity partners can make decent money: http://www.americanlawyer.com/id=1202575852183, so hopefully you can build up a little nest-egg before you get kicked to the curb at the first sign of trouble.

(Don't go to law school.)

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby 09042014 » Thu May 01, 2014 3:20 pm

IAFG wrote:What's so fucking great about making (nonlockstep) partner tho


Making underlings pitch 20 cases a year and then make a million dollars when some dumb ass hires you.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby run26.2 » Thu May 01, 2014 3:20 pm

Mind providing the range given in the American Lawyer article? I have to login to Lexis to read it and I don't want to do that.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby NYSprague » Thu May 01, 2014 3:26 pm

Re that diamond law firm article rayiner posted: http://lawyermetrics.com/2013/12/03/the ... nraveling/

I don't remember seeing this stat before:

According to data collected by the National Association of Law Placement (NALP), among the nearly 600 firms that participate in the on-campus-interview process, the number of summer associates declined from 11,302 in 2002 to 5,584 in 2012—a decline of more than 50%



And their solution to the diamond model is that biglaw needs to hire more associates but pay less than 6 figures? (I know firms are doing this already with staff associates, but they are never on partnership track.) Oh and the article says that practice and experience is what matters but firms need to change training and mentoring practices because of some social contract, which ,tbf, I have no idea what they mean.

Firms that want to get ahead of this change curve need to do two things. First, start hiring junior talent again. Highly motivated and able law school grads are available for less than six-figures. Second, provide the type of training and mentoring that enables these lawyers to deliver superior value to clients. We think that firms that pursue this path will rediscover the power of a social contract that binds together the fortunes of junior and senior lawyers who share a commitment to integrity and professional excellence.


Really all they are saying is to hire more associates but pay them substantially less and give them more work.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby run26.2 » Thu May 01, 2014 3:33 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
IAFG wrote:What's so fucking great about making (nonlockstep) partner tho


Making underlings pitch 20 cases a year and then make a million dollars when some dumb ass hires you.

Being successful in this way is truly a talent in and of itself--regardless of whether you also have legal talent. Not even kidding.

At the same time, I wouldn't complain to be one of those associates. Regularly contributing to pitches that result in new business is very good for your reputation.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 3:49 pm

NYSprague wrote:Re that diamond law firm article rayiner posted: http://lawyermetrics.com/2013/12/03/the ... nraveling/

I don't remember seeing this stat before:

According to data collected by the National Association of Law Placement (NALP), among the nearly 600 firms that participate in the on-campus-interview process, the number of summer associates declined from 11,302 in 2002 to 5,584 in 2012—a decline of more than 50%



And their solution to the diamond model is that biglaw needs to hire more associates but pay less than 6 figures? (I know firms are doing this already with staff associates, but they are never on partnership track.) Oh and the article says that practice and experience is what matters but firms need to change training and mentoring practices because of some social contract, which ,tbf, I have no idea what they mean.

Firms that want to get ahead of this change curve need to do two things. First, start hiring junior talent again. Highly motivated and able law school grads are available for less than six-figures. Second, provide the type of training and mentoring that enables these lawyers to deliver superior value to clients. We think that firms that pursue this path will rediscover the power of a social contract that binds together the fortunes of junior and senior lawyers who share a commitment to integrity and professional excellence.


Really all they are saying is to hire more associates but pay them substantially less and give them more work.


Law firm consultants make their money selling older equity partners tricks to goose PPP. Saying that firms should hire 10 associates making $80k/year for every equity partner is right up their alley. They really hate the recent trend of having fewer junior associates and more non-equity partners and counsel because that's bad for PPP. In law firm consultant parlance, those people are "expensive leverage."

They're not wrong, in that cheap leverage is better for PPP than expensive leverage all else being equal. But only if you can keep that cheap leverage busy. I think in the face of technological changes and contract attorneys, that ship has sailed. Firms can barely keep their dramatically shrunken pool of junior associates busy, and clients continue to balk at associates being trained on their dime. Junior litigation associates have been replaced with contract attorneys and predictive coding software, and those trends aren't going to reverse themselves.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby OneMoreLawHopeful » Thu May 01, 2014 5:18 pm

rayiner wrote:They're not wrong, in that cheap leverage is better for PPP than expensive leverage all else being equal. But only if you can keep that cheap leverage busy. I think in the face of technological changes and contract attorneys, that ship has sailed. Firms can barely keep their dramatically shrunken pool of junior associates busy, and clients continue to balk at associates being trained on their dime. Junior litigation associates have been replaced with contract attorneys and predictive coding software, and those trends aren't going to reverse themselves.


Can you expand upon the whole "firms can barely keep their associates busy" thing?

I'm only asking because a common trope on TLS is to refer to several (all?) of the $160k paying firms as "sweatshops" which seems to be at odds with the simultaneous claim that there's just not enough work to go around.

I understand the difference between billables and hours in the office, and how a 12 hour day can result in only 4 hours billed, but that seems like a weak explanation for two reasons. First, a lot of non-billable work creates a clear benefit for the firm (e.g. pitch work is usually not billable, but it's what results in billable work; without the pitches you're not getting new cases at all; to a lesser degree, high-profile pro-bono and "helping a partner with an article" would also fall into this category), so it's work the firm needs done anyway, not "make-work". Second, the whole 12-hours-turns-into-4-billables clearly doesn't happen every day (I have enough friends who are currently associates to know this for a fact), it's more a once-a-month-once-every-two-months deal, usually when a lot of administrative shit is suddenly due.

There are also complaints on TLS from posters, currently working as associates, about how grueling a "300 billable hour" month is, and how you don't ever want those. I understand that - it does sound terrible. But again, it also sounds at odds with the whole "not enough work" narrative.

Can you help me understand what's going on here? It just seems really off that people can simultaneously complain that there isn't enough work to go around, and yet also claim that you're billing so many hours that your girlfriend leaves you.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby chem » Thu May 01, 2014 5:22 pm

OneMoreLawHopeful wrote:
rayiner wrote:They're not wrong, in that cheap leverage is better for PPP than expensive leverage all else being equal. But only if you can keep that cheap leverage busy. I think in the face of technological changes and contract attorneys, that ship has sailed. Firms can barely keep their dramatically shrunken pool of junior associates busy, and clients continue to balk at associates being trained on their dime. Junior litigation associates have been replaced with contract attorneys and predictive coding software, and those trends aren't going to reverse themselves.


Can you expand upon the whole "firms can barely keep their associates busy" thing?

I'm only asking because a common trope on TLS is to refer to several (all?) of the $160k paying firms as "sweatshops" which seems to be at odds with the simultaneous claim that there's just not enough work to go around.

I understand the difference between billables and hours in the office, and how a 12 hour day can result in only 4 hours billed, but that seems like a weak explanation for two reasons. First, a lot of non-billable work creates a clear benefit for the firm (e.g. pitch work is usually not billable, but it's what results in billable work; without the pitches you're not getting new cases at all; to a lesser degree, high-profile pro-bono and "helping a partner with an article" would also fall into this category), so it's work the firm needs done anyway, not "make-work". Second, the whole 12-hours-turns-into-4-billables clearly doesn't happen every day (I have enough friends who are currently associates to know this for a fact), it's more a once-a-month-once-every-two-months deal, usually when a lot of administrative shit is suddenly due.

There are also complaints on TLS from posters, currently working as associates, about how grueling a "300 billable hour" month is, and how you don't ever want those. I understand that - it does sound terrible. But again, it also sounds at odds with the whole "not enough work" narrative.

Can you help me understand what's going on here? It just seems really off that people can simultaneously complain that there isn't enough work to go around, and yet also claim that you're billing so many hours that your girlfriend leaves you.


Feast and famine. Some law firms have too much work for too few associates. Others have barely enough to get by. If you work at the former, the stress comes from keeping your life together billing 2400+. If you work at the latter, the stress comes from finding enough work to keep your job

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby IAFG » Thu May 01, 2014 5:24 pm

OneMoreLawHopeful wrote:
rayiner wrote:They're not wrong, in that cheap leverage is better for PPP than expensive leverage all else being equal. But only if you can keep that cheap leverage busy. I think in the face of technological changes and contract attorneys, that ship has sailed. Firms can barely keep their dramatically shrunken pool of junior associates busy, and clients continue to balk at associates being trained on their dime. Junior litigation associates have been replaced with contract attorneys and predictive coding software, and those trends aren't going to reverse themselves.


Can you expand upon the whole "firms can barely keep their associates busy" thing?

I'm only asking because a common trope on TLS is to refer to several (all?) of the $160k paying firms as "sweatshops" which seems to be at odds with the simultaneous claim that there's just not enough work to go around.

I understand the difference between billables and hours in the office, and how a 12 hour day can result in only 4 hours billed, but that seems like a weak explanation for two reasons. First, a lot of non-billable work creates a clear benefit for the firm (e.g. pitch work is usually not billable, but it's what results in billable work; without the pitches you're not getting new cases at all; to a lesser degree, high-profile pro-bono and "helping a partner with an article" would also fall into this category), so it's work the firm needs done anyway, not "make-work". Second, the whole 12-hours-turns-into-4-billables clearly doesn't happen every day (I have enough friends who are currently associates to know this for a fact), it's more a once-a-month-once-every-two-months deal, usually when a lot of administrative shit is suddenly due.

There are also complaints on TLS from posters, currently working as associates, about how grueling a "300 billable hour" month is, and how you don't ever want those. I understand that - it does sound terrible. But again, it also sounds at odds with the whole "not enough work" narrative.

Can you help me understand what's going on here? It just seems really off that people can simultaneously complain that there isn't enough work to go around, and yet also claim that you're billing so many hours that your girlfriend leaves you.

I have had an 80 hour month and am in the thick of an 80 hour week. So.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 5:43 pm

OneMoreLawHopeful wrote:
rayiner wrote:They're not wrong, in that cheap leverage is better for PPP than expensive leverage all else being equal. But only if you can keep that cheap leverage busy. I think in the face of technological changes and contract attorneys, that ship has sailed. Firms can barely keep their dramatically shrunken pool of junior associates busy, and clients continue to balk at associates being trained on their dime. Junior litigation associates have been replaced with contract attorneys and predictive coding software, and those trends aren't going to reverse themselves.


Can you expand upon the whole "firms can barely keep their associates busy" thing?

I'm only asking because a common trope on TLS is to refer to several (all?) of the $160k paying firms as "sweatshops" which seems to be at odds with the simultaneous claim that there's just not enough work to go around.

I understand the difference between billables and hours in the office, and how a 12 hour day can result in only 4 hours billed, but that seems like a weak explanation for two reasons. First, a lot of non-billable work creates a clear benefit for the firm (e.g. pitch work is usually not billable, but it's what results in billable work; without the pitches you're not getting new cases at all; to a lesser degree, high-profile pro-bono and "helping a partner with an article" would also fall into this category), so it's work the firm needs done anyway, not "make-work". Second, the whole 12-hours-turns-into-4-billables clearly doesn't happen every day (I have enough friends who are currently associates to know this for a fact), it's more a once-a-month-once-every-two-months deal, usually when a lot of administrative shit is suddenly due.

There are also complaints on TLS from posters, currently working as associates, about how grueling a "300 billable hour" month is, and how you don't ever want those. I understand that - it does sound terrible. But again, it also sounds at odds with the whole "not enough work" narrative.

Can you help me understand what's going on here? It just seems really off that people can simultaneously complain that there isn't enough work to go around, and yet also claim that you're billing so many hours that your girlfriend leaves you.


The basic issue is that demand is down, realization is down, and workflow is exhibiting higher variability. For example, let's say during the boom, juniors billed 2,000 hours on average, working 2,500 hours in the process (80% efficiency). If realization was 90%, the firm might collect 1,800 of those hours. Post-boom, there is less work overall, particularly for juniors, and realization is down, but firms have cut staff to compensate. But that only masks the underlying problem. If realization is at 80%, the associate has to bill 2,250 hours for the firm to collect that same 1,800. Or, the firm only collects 1,600 for the same 2,000 billed. And with work being more sporadic, efficiency goes down. The associate might have to work 3,000 hours to bill 2,250 for the firm to collect the same 1,800. Moreover, when the firm *is* busy, those associates have to handle the same workload they would have had pre-recession with fewer people.

Thus, you might have a few 300 hour months, but they'll be interspersed with 120 hour months, and you may still struggle to hit 2,000 billables for the year. The lean months make you push yourself really hard to get as many billables in those heavy months as you can. And even if you do hit 2,000 for the year, the firm isn't happy because they're only collecting 1,600. And they can't reduce staff even further, because then they risk not being able to sop-up all the billables that are there on the heavy periods.

These numbers are all made up, but you get the idea.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby beepboopbeep » Thu May 01, 2014 6:07 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Most litigators go to other firms (either big or small law). After you get to be more senior and you don't make partner (like the vast majority of senior associates), no one wants you. That's when things get really dicey. I've spoken to several recruiters who say it's nearly impossible to place a 9th+ year commercial lit associate who was passed over for partnership. I know a few of these super senior associate types who have left law altogether or taken quasi-non-law jobs like career counseling, headhunting, associate "coordinators" (i.e., coordinating work assignments to associates at a firm, kind of like a mid-level management position in a law firm (but not really practicing law)), etc.

In summary, there's a decent likelihood that you won't even be practicing law at all in 10 years if you're a junior litigator. And even though most ex-biglaw litigators who are no longer practicing would say they left the law "by choice" (because lawyers are usually pretty prideful people, in my experience), the truth of the matter is that most of them probably had no choice.


First, this thread is fantastic and, while I've heard a lot of this before in various places, scary.

It sounds like most people ITT are still in big firms, but does anyone have any more detailed insight on how to avoid the trouble getting a post-Biglaw jerb if you're leaning lit? Is going to a boutique and getting slightly-more-real experience enough? Or better to specialize and just really hustle to get a gov/compliance type gig? whynotboth.jpg? Or is the takeaway just, "don't do lit?"

rayiner wrote:I think there's an important take-away from these points, which is that the optimal early career plays for litigators should be different than that of transactional lawyers. Transactional lawyers get relatively early hands-on experience even at top V10-type firms, and benefit from being in NYC. Their doing "premium work" brings value to their post-firm job search. But for a litigator, "premium work" often means work where clients are willing to pay V10 rates for document review. Great for the firm, not so great for the junior associate.

I think people who are interested in litigation, some of the TLS conventional wisdom is sub-optimal. For example, TLS generally frowns on going to satellite offices. But during my stint at a V10, 90% of the meaningful work I did was sourced out of our satellite offices, and were lower-profile. In contrast, on the "headline" cases I worked on, the junior and mid-level associates were mostly occupied with document review. I think there's value, as an associate, to being in a firm that has a workload that is not amenable to 5:1 leverage and has clients that aren't willing to pay exorbitant rates for mid-levels to do document review. And I think it can be worth taking quite a "haircut" in terms of Vault ranking to get to such a firm.


Thanks - this is great. Have people who have gone to satellite/boutiques had this better experience? I'm mostly trying to stick to 1:1 places in looking forward to OCI, but it seems like even at those there's some big differences. Anyone with experience at these sorts of places able to talk about exits?

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 6:29 pm

I don't know if anyone can say what's "enough." I don't think anyone ITT is at that stage of their career. I wouldn't say to avoid lit just because. Its higher risk and you'll have to hustle more, and you might do everything right and still end up unemployable. But I think lit is a whole lot more fun than corp, myself. You just got to reconcile yourself to the possibility of making sub-100k after big law.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby Elston Gunn » Thu May 01, 2014 6:41 pm

rayiner wrote:
trombalontana wrote:How do regulatory exit ops (telecom, antitrust, etc.) compare to those in litigation? Just as bleak?


Way better.

Anyone have any insight into what these jobs usually look like? In house? Are there a lot of regulatory boutiques in D.C.? I suppose the transition into Big Gov is probably a bit easier, as well.

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rayiner
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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby rayiner » Thu May 01, 2014 6:45 pm

Elston Gunn wrote:
rayiner wrote:
trombalontana wrote:How do regulatory exit ops (telecom, antitrust, etc.) compare to those in litigation? Just as bleak?


Way better.

Anyone have any insight into what these jobs usually look like? In house? Are there a lot of regulatory boutiques in D.C.? I suppose the transition into Big Gov is probably a bit easier, as well.


Most regulatory work is handled by big law firms in DC. But teams are small, associate hiring is limited, and leverage is low. There is regulatory work in house. E.g. when I was at the FCC, the lawyers I worked with had come from regulatory practices at firms. One went firm, in house, then FCC, then partner at communications boutique. Another went firm then FCC then in house.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby beepboopbeep » Thu May 01, 2014 6:47 pm

rayiner wrote:I don't know if anyone can say what's "enough." I don't think anyone ITT is at that stage of their career. I wouldn't say to avoid lit just because. Its higher risk and you'll have to hustle more, and you might do everything right and still end up unemployable. But I think lit is a whole lot more fun than corp, myself. You just got to reconcile yourself to the possibility of making sub-100k after big law.


Sure - didn't mean to imply a one-size-fits-all. There's a big difference between unemployable and sub-100k, though - much more concerned with avoiding the former than the latter.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Thu May 01, 2014 6:48 pm

englawyer wrote:I've seen many people from lit change over to smaller "midlaw" type firms that seem to focus on a smaller businesses. I guess if you were worth $500/hr or whatever to Wall St banks, it is relatively easy to convince some small-ish business owner you are worth $200/hr to them?


You'd like to think this, but no. Wall St banks hire biglaw firms for at least two major reasons that I can think of:

1) The case/matter they need legal help with is gigantic and even some of the larger midlaw firms don't have the resources (i.e., associates) to handle it.

2) They just want to cover their ass by saying they hired "one of the best firms" to get the job done. You could also argue that connections between biglaw firms and in house attorneys keep business "in the family" for a similar reason: in house attorneys usually worked in biglaw firms (at least at some point during their careers) and, therefore, probably think they're better than non-biglaw firms.

It's the latter reason that really kills the smaller firms. Non-legal management probably doesn't have a good idea about how much some kind of legal work *should* cost, so they just tell the general counsel to get the job done and not screw it up. The only way a general counsel can ensure he/she won't get shitcanned or yelled at when something goes wrong is to get "one of the best firms" to do the job. It's not worth the risk of saving a few hundred thousand (or even million) on a deal/case to hire someone you don't know and (more importantly) who can't be vouched for by other lawyers in the same way a biglaw firm can be vouched for.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Thu May 01, 2014 6:58 pm

yossarian71 wrote:So what I'm gathering in terms of importance for exit outcomes:

market (substantive experience & practice area >> firm prestige >>> everything else)

Oversimplification, obviously, but what are other factors? How do school prestige and grades factor in? Is law a profession of recommendations or is it really just your experience + book?


You can't really summarize exit outcomes. It depends on where you're applying to, who is reading your resume, etc. Some people care mostly about experience. Some people care about grades/school. Some people care about recommendations. Until you get a book of business (which is most likely to be NEVER if you're in litigation), there's no sure-fire way to set yourself apart and guarantee success.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Thu May 01, 2014 7:01 pm

Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?


The only people I've known who have lateraled from biglaw firm to another biglaw firm did so because they wanted to be closer to family or follow a job their spouse had gotten. I have no idea why someone would try to lateral to a different biglaw firm to make partner (lol). None of the biglaw firms want to make you partner. Just accept that fact and your life will be a lot simpler. It's like some kind of sick reverse-Hunger Games thing where they choose a few of you to become partner just to keep hope alive, when in reality they really would prefer all of you to just work for them for free while they go boating in the Mediterranean.

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Re: BigLaw Exit Options: The Vale Part 2?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Thu May 01, 2014 7:04 pm

yossarian71 wrote:
Theopliske8711 wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:No one makes partner. Its harder than it was before when it was nearly impossible.


I'm just wondering what the point would be of moving to a different firm. What would they negotiate with you on?

And what's the point for the firm? Why bring someone with 4 - 8 years of experience if not partner track? What is the shelf-life at the new firm?


A lot of firms will keep senior associates around for a long time, as long as the associates are cool with never making partner. As I said early, attorneys are particularly prideful people. It's hard for them to just submit to being passed over for partnership and get viewed as inferior for the rest of their careers by people at the firm, including snotnosed LR striver dickhead junior associates dead set on gunning for partner.




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