How to Get a Job as a Lawyer
John Farnan, board member of the National Lawyers Association, recommends: "Try to get your foot in the door. If you get an offer, consider taking it—even if it is not your 'dream job'—and build up your experience. Develop your contacts both inside and outside the legal field." Farnan encourages candidates to form and maintain relationships with friends in the field, prospective employers, and clients. After all, as Farnan says, "It is important to try and assess whether the lawyer would likely interact well with, and help retain and grow, existing firm clients and perhaps develop the capacity, down the road, to develop her or his own book of business."
Interview Questions Submitted by Real Lawyers
"What was most challenging case you tried and how did you navigate through it." - Fulton County District Attorney's Office Senior District Attorney Candidate (Atlanta, GA)
"Have you ever failed to speak and later regretted it and what was it that you failed to say." - CIGNA Lawyer Candidate (Philadelphia, PA)
"What do you consider a long workday?" - Minnesota Attorney General Attorney Candidate (Location Unknown)
What is the Job Like?
Most lawyers belong to private practices or firms. They begin as salaried associates, and, if they impress their superiors, move up to the level of partner—a part owner of the practice. A degree of business savvy is required to be successful at this level. Attorneys must continually court clients to maintain a consistent revenue stream. The constant need to make an impression on the partners as an associate and to secure new clients as a partner adds a high degree of stress to the profession. Attorneys can also be employed by corporations and the government. These "in-house" posts offer a higher degree of employment security but come with less autonomy than one has in a private practice.
Real Reviews From Lawyers
+ "Large amounts of responsibility almost immediately; interesting work; challenging issues." - U.S. Department of Justice Assistant United States Attorney (Location Unknown)
+ "High level of professionalism, very competent lawyers with strong skill sets—particularly in litigation, diverse and interesting cases in many different locations." - Mayer Brown Attorney (Location Unknown)
- "Your job does not end at 5 or 6 pm, you will always have stuff do you when you come into work the next day." - Travelers Companies Associate Attorney (New York, NY)
- "Most of the hard work is fighting with others. Sometime it is simple education about the issues, but more often than not it is ownership and credit." - Intel Senior Patent Attorney (Hillsboro, OR)
Review information and interview questions supplied by Glassdoor.