FL4answer58

How many aspiring Lawyers here

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I'm sure there are a few. I graduated last year (May 2009) and I'm licensed to practice in two eastern US states.

If anyone is on the fence about it, go ahead and take LSATSs and DO IT. It was the best experience of my life. Plan on not sleeping for 3-4 years or seeing anyone you know, but well worth the price of admission imo.

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Guest usctrojanalum

I'm seriously on the fence right now. I love what I'm doing, making a decent enough living and do have enough $ saved to go to law school. I graduated USC in 2008 and just been doing my thing for the past 2 years. OTOH I do have a bunch of friends who are L1 and L2 right now and they absolutely hate life and I'm kind of over school. I was thinking about taking the February LSAT but I think I just want this year to pass and make it a 2011 goal or something.

Edited by usctrojanalum
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While my own background, education and work history is in journalism, I have often wondered...

...is it ever too late for a career change?

I'm not sure I have the necessary fortitude, but I have the keen interest.

I have debated the cost and found it 'out of my meager means'.

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I have debated the cost and found it 'out of my meager means'.

The federal government will loan you $120,000. I'm not saying to take the loans if you don't need them, but don't let that stop you. Just beware that a $1500/month student loan payment that starts 6 months after graduation probably means any dream of working for those with very modest means is out the window.
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Just beware that a $1500/month student loan payment that starts 6 months after graduation probably means any dream of working for those with very modest means is out the window.

You just stated my reason for not going to law school. I have always felt "everyman" needed protection through representation rather than more abuse and all the justice he could pay for.

Good dream though, check out "The Who: Behind Blue Eyes" on youtube, if you're not familiar with it.

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When I can't sleep I hit the tv and late at night the local community college shows the law school lectures... I'll watch them for fun and I actually learn stuff... :) but no way will I really do much more than that. This world has too many lawyers as it is, though a couple years ago I was thinking about taking a few law classes just for relevance to topics discussed here on the boards...

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Is it possible, that one might dare to pursue the legal profession, risk the financial hardship for education, and then think it possible to employ yourself in the legal aid or consumer protection services that provide for lower income base?

Let's say for example,

a) No mortgage (paid off - newer home)

B) Local Law college (accepted)

c) 2nd Income (Business exists)

d) Small savings no real nest egg to speak (other then Business & Home)

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Is it possible, that one might dare to pursue the legal profession, risk the financial hardship for education, and then think it possible to employ yourself in the legal aid or consumer protection services that provide for lower income base?

Yes, I would think. Maybe more pro bono in the beginning, then full time legal aid when finances allowed. IMHO, of course.

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This world has too many lawyers as it is
For the most part, law school has little to do with courtrooms. And over half of those with JDs never step foot in a courtroom in their life.

Besides, your loans are usually for 10 years, so after that point you could always take a pay cut and do whatever it is you really want to do. ;)

Keep in mind that there are also programs in place to reduce debt burdens for lower income attorneys serving those in need.

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Well I'm no lawyer but I do intend to attend law school I'm just waiting to take the Lsat. I already have a Paralegal degree consumer law is looking very interesting so I might dabble in that as well. But, my real intent is to do law in a community service setting for lower income clients so they may get their day in court and learn their legal rights as well.

Edited by soveu38
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Another deterrent for me is nowadays even the crappiest tier 3 law schools are 30k a year.
My law school debt was roughly 90k. Top tier 2 school. I pay $950/month to my lender. It definitely puts a dent in my paycheck.

To soveu38- take a good LSAT course. It is tough to get in most schools unless you come in at least at 162. The courses are definitely worth the money.

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You have payment options. I am choosing the 10yr plan. You can choose a plan up to 25 years and have a much lower payment. I won't do this because my student loan interest rate is the highest rate of interest of any debt I have- currently around 6.0% blended rate (not deductible to any extent because wife works too and we are phased out thanks to marriage penalty). So I want to eliminate it before I have two kids in college. :idea:

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Well, I'm now a volunteer at local legal aid office(s).

It may not be much, but it gives me an opportunity to get feel for the work environment.

I’m not involved in any type of legal advice (nor do I want to be) but I do help prepare basic docs for those applying.

It’s interesting to see the case loads…the type of complaints often associated with legal aid office and this area of law.

They do seem to 'turn away' many consumer related disputes like debt collection.

The standard 'memo' reflects 'judgment proof’' analysis or BK recommendation.

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Starting Law School in the Jan semester myself.
Good luck and enjoy it!!!! It is an enormous amount of work but if you are an innately curious person, you will love every minute of it. Plan on drinking no less than 3,546,579,576 cups of coffee in the next three to four years.
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Is that what it takes - curiosity? That's me - I spend all day and all night learning. I am addicted. I comb the internet and I pick up textbooks from yard sales (sociology, for example, is my latest interest and I was told today that I should pursue accounting) and read them in the bathtub even though I am not in college.

I think I drink more coffee than that each month. Check that box, too, then.

:lol: Sorry I butted in here. I am not an aspiring lawyer. The thread title caught my attention, though (see? curiosity)

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I am entertaining the notion myself. As a pro se litigant, I fought a three year long, civil harassment suit (defamation) and successfully prosecuted a counterclaim for the same. It was a grueling three years, and I hated it initially. Once I got the hang of writing and arguing motions however, it was great.

Few challenges in life have more rewarding than watching the plaintiff's attorney squirm during the trial.

Although the jury declared each party "guilty," they awarded no monetary relief. With no prevailing party, each side was stuck with their own costs. I lost three years of my life, but the Plaintiff lost close to $250,000 in legal costs. I count that as a victory.

I guess that if I hang around here long enough, I may just try to become a "real" lawyer, although being a "guerrilla lawyer" has come in quite handy several times since. They never see me coming!

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I've thought about it, but I think I'm going to do something else instead.
So if you ask 10 attorneys if they would do it all over again, 9 of them would tell you NO WAY. Honestly, I don't know one attorney who is happy. I have a brother-in-law that is a partner at age 37 at a huge west coast firm, brings home $300k+ annually, and he hates his life. Assign a price to your life and then every individual would have to calculate the cost/benefit of their own situation.

Additionally, burnout is high and the vast majority of attorneys don't make big money. They just come home with a headache at 7:30pm every night. Just playing devil's advocate here for those on the fence.

One more consideration, the debt is considerable. I got off light with a mere $90k in nondischargeable student loans. The first $12,000 per year in after tax income ($16,500 in gross income) goes to pay my student loan for the next 9 years. It puts a hurting on the budget.

Edited by jq26
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