Pretty much everyone knows that grades in law school are extremely important. Indeed, a law student’s grades are perhaps the biggest indicator of where that individual will work after graduating from law school. For this reason, many law students read books or advice online about how they can succeed in law school. Of course, everyone understands that hard work and dedication to one’s studies are the biggest ways to impact one’s law school GPA. However, there are certain things that law students can do to artificially boost their GPAs that have little to do with hitting the books. Taking Summer or Evening Classes
I discussed in a previous article how law students can increase their GPAs by taking summer classes. At many law schools, the required curve does not apply to smaller classes, since it is difficult to apportion a curve with a small sample size. As a result, students in these classes are more likely to receive higher grades. Law schools typically offer many such classes during the summer when fewer students are on campus. Enrolling in such courses can be a great way to boost your GPA, since you are more likely to receive a higher grade. In addition, taking some classes during the summer lessens the amount of credits that you need to fulfill during the academic year. As a result, taking summer courses can relieve pressure during the academic year so that more time can be spent on the remaining courses a student takes. Of course, enrolling in summer classes might not be a viable option for many students, but summer classes can be an extremely effective way to boost your GPA.
Also, taking evening classes with part-time students can also help you boost your GPA. I don’t want to offend part-time students, and I met some amazing evening students while in law school. However, it is undeniable that part-time students usually have a job or other responsibilities that full-time students typically do not. As a result, if your law school offers a part-time program, and you take evening classes as a full-time student, you might […]
Whenever there is a discussion on deregulating the legal profession, those favoring deregulation claim that lawyers have a monopoly. This monopoly supposedly makes lawyers prohibitively expensive for most people. Whether lawyers’ fees are too damn high is subjective and will be discussed another time. But today, let’s determine if lawyers are really engaging in monopolistic behavior.
A monopoly has only one supplier of a good or service. This allows the supplier to charge the consumer whatever it can get away with. This is obviously not the case in the legal profession. I looked at the number of lawyers in randomly selected states:
New York: 182,296
North Carolina: 24,253
I get that not all lawyers are competing against each other. Some are working in government and get their salaries from the taxpayer community chest. Others are working in one of those quirky JD-advantage jobs. Despite that, there is a good chance you’ll find at least three law offices in a boardwalk of any major city. Because of this, fewer attorneys are in general practice in order to avoid competing against each other. Most specialize to differentiate themselves. For example, in my practice area, some specialize in minimizing income taxes, some specialize in estate taxes, and a rare few specialize in avoiding luxury taxes.Some might argue that lawyers as a group have a monopoly on giving legal advice. Assuming that is the case, the large number of lawyers makes it impossible for them to control prices by operating like a cartel. No state bar or other organization tells lawyers how much to charge a client. In fact, some lawyer message boards and listservs forbid recommending minimum fees or discussing fee structures.If there is an unspoken minimum floor on legal fees, it is due to the costs of running a law office, not because every lawyer is living on Park Avenue. My criminal defense colleagues tell me there is no free parking when they are just visiting their clients in jail. This is why I am skeptical […]
Passed the bar or LPC? Interned at all the right places? In possession of a glittering resume, filled with outstanding grades and certifications? It’s taken you years to get to this point and you might think that you’re finally ready to step out on your own…But making it within this ruthless industry, might require more than you ever thought.
As a lawyer, your reputation will always proceed you. It must be stellar, robust and most importantly – strong. Not only do you have to work hard to be the best at everything you do, but you need to work even harder to build a reputation that exceeds everything.
Whether you’re a Toronto Disability Lawyer or you’re a personal injury lawyer from Manchester, you need to build on your reputation in order to gain the trust and confidence of any potential clients. So, read on for 4 ways law graduates and junior lawyers can build on their reputation in the law industry. Always be transparent
Promised something to a client? Deliver it. Even sooner than you said you would. Always maintain your integrity and honesty by following through on every action, notion and promise. If you haven’t already been doing this, then you need to start now. Keep everything confidential (that should go without saying) and apply this private and professional ethos to every aspect of your legal work. Every client you come into contact with should be treated like the most important client in your legal career. Clients should feel confident and safe throughout their case. Common courtesy is everything
From the moment your law vocation begins, your reputation is building. A faux pas that occurred in law school has the potential to haunt you throughout your career. So, showing common courtesy to everyone you meet, regardless of their role, background or legal standing is of the upmost importance. So say your “good mornings”, your “pleases” and “thank you’s” – believe it or not, first impressions really do count. Remember to smile and be known as the law graduate who is kind, approachable and gets results. Think before you […]
Roger Maldonado ‘13 is an associate at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP in Minneapolis who works with clients on a variety of business-related issues including bankruptcy cases, equipment leasing issues, receiverships, and related commercial and financial litigation. He is also a captain in the Minnesota Army National Guard. In the spring of 2019, Maldonado became the president of the Minnesota Hispanic Bar Association (MHBA), an organization he first became involved with as a law student. We recently caught up with Maldonado to learn more about his leadership position with the MHBA and why he chooses to be active in a local professional legal organization. Roger Maldonado What are your goals for your year as president of MHBA?
I’ve served on the MHBA Board for the past six years and, from the friendships and connections I’ve made by serving the MHBA, I truly call this organization my familia. Not only is it a support system for me, but it has opened countless opportunities to serve our legal community, all which have helped me grow both personally and professionally. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the MHBA. My goals this year are to provide opportunities for all of our members through our programming and events.
Now that you are a few months into your post, what has been the most unexpected or most surprising thing about being president?
The most surprising thing about being president of the MHBA has been realizing the great impression you can leave on individuals and communities by simply sitting down and getting to know one another and sharing what we do at the MHBA. I’ve found that once you sit down with our members or prospective members, it’s pretty easy to get them engaged and involved by simply inviting them to join you in an effort.
What motivated you to pursue leadership positions within MHBA?
It was a really easy choice for me to jump into leadership positions at the MHBA once I started to get to know the great attorneys and judges involved in the organization. Particularly when you realize the work and effort […]
(Image via Getty) I’m a fan of education. Anything that makes people smarter and creates opportunities. Who doesn’t want to get behind an initiative that generally contributes to the good of the legal community? Through my affiliation with the University of Florida Levin College of Law and their eDiscovery program run by Professor William “Bill” Hamilton, I recently learned about a program that is creating new career paths for law school graduates. It’s a path that does not involve the typical grind of working at a law firm.
UF Law’s eDiscovery Program is of course well-known for providing law students hands-on knowledge of eDiscovery through its Distinguished Speaker Series and its annual eDiscovery conference. And on March 19, 2020, UF Law will host its eighth annual eDiscovery conference, an event not bogged down in vendor sponsorship or prohibitive costs. Just education — all day. In-person or streamed live online. And it’s free to students (full disclosure: I’m on the conference planning committee).
UF Law has now partnered with international eDiscovery company Consilio to offer graduates unique opportunities to learn the business of eDiscovery and practice law. This is nothing new for UF Law. Every year, before the eDiscovery conference, the law school hosts eDiscovery CareerFest, during which alternative career paths for law school graduates are explored through presentations by companies in the legal service and technology industry.
I spoke last week with several of the people who put this new internship program together, and below is the distillation of these conversations.
The program is referred to as the Consilio Summer Internship Program. It functions in the same way as law firm summer associate programs. Consilio came to the UF Law campus to recruit, just as law firms do, and they interviewed students for the program.
It used to be that law students “summered” at a firm, accepted an offer, and later joined as an associate. In six or seven years, they had an inkling as to whether they were in line for partner. That career path now is more elusive. Now students can intern at Consilio, learn the eDiscovery business, and decide whether it’s […]
Exclusive: Shorter, more flexible option will allow students to pause their studies after completing stage one BPP University Law School (BPP) is to offer a new two-part Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) which will see would-be barristers given the option to pause their studies at the end of stage one.
Legal Cheek can reveal that the law school’s new Barrister Training Course (BTC) is shorter than the current BPTC — eight months, as opposed to 12 — and will be available from September 2020.
The course, which is still subject to approval by the Bar Standards Board (BSB), is divided into two distinct, four-month teaching blocks, with students able to pause their studies upon completion of stage one. This, according to BPP, will give aspiring barristers “flexibility around any other commitments such as gaining paid work experience”.
BPP told Legal Cheek that students will be ready to sit the BSB centralised assessments — civil and criminal procedure, as well as evidence — at the end of stage one, while advocacy skills will be taught across the whole programme.
News of the course comes after the BSB approved a series of new training rules in a bid to make the route to qualification as a barrister more flexible and affordable.
BPP added that students will be supported by “intuitive online tools” that will give them instant feedback on their learning and help them track their progress, as well as an option to choose between “common law or commercial practice contexts” during part two of the course. The cost of the BTC will be revealed next month.
Mark Keith, lead designer of the BTC at BPP University Law School, said: “The new regulations have given us more freedom in the way we can deliver our training to student barristers. From day one, our students will learn to think and act like a barrister. Students will get regular opportunities to apply their knowledge by tackling realistic legal scenarios that will prepare them for the types of cases they are likely to encounter within their pupillage.” The current BPTC offered by BPP will remain unaffected by these changes.