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Could you please share your suggestions for new or pre law students?

Englewood, CO |

I will assume that the journey that has brought you to practice law included good decisions and poor ones as well. I will also assume that you may or may not have done anything differently. Either way I would be interested in hearing your advice, contrary to your deaf eared child or nephew  Can you please share ANY tips or points of advice? I am interested in all areas from major/minor selection, financial decisions for school, grants, internships, LSAT and anything else that you feel would be relevant.
I am a non traditional student. A single mother of two going back to school in the process of getting a Bachelors from Metro in Denver. I have dabbled in LSAT prep but am not inclined to pay $3K for an offocial LSAT class unless I am convinced the cost/benefit.

Attorney Answers 5

Posted

You might look into becoming a paralegal first. It is a much less expensive education, it seems like there are more jobs and you get to find out if you like and are suited to the practice of law before investing so much of your time and money into law school.

I don't know if your major matters - it seems like engineers and English majors both can thrive as lawyers, since the skills and thinking learned in either undergrad program have benefits in law. I think an LSAT course is a critical investment for most people, as getting into law school is highly competitive and the better you do on your LSAT, the more options you have for schools, scholarships, etc. I hope this helps.

You can reach Dave Rich at (303) 886-2516 or dave@flatironlegal.com. Dave Rich is an attorney licensed in Colorado. Answering your questions does not create an attorney-client relationship between us. You should speak with an attorney to whom you have provided all the facts in your case, before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. I am not obligated to answer subsequent emails or phone calls unless you have hired me. I wish you the best of luck with your situation.

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As a single mother of two I assume you are pinched both for time and money. Law school is very expensive and low ranking law schools cost about as much as high ranked law schools. Any form of financial aid is hard to come by, except for student loans which can be a heavy burden in life. There is a huge difference between the career outlook for graduates of low ranked law schools and those of high ranked law schools. In brief, it is in my opinion a poor investment of time and money to attend a low ranked law school. I know plenty of good lawyers and successful lawyers who graduated from low ranked law schools, but in today's economic climate going to any law school is not as good an investment as it was even 10 years ago. So, think twice before you go in this direction. Law is still a great and interesting career but it's harder to make a go of it as a lawyer today than it has ever been..

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$3,000 for LSAT is a drop in the bucket - that is the least of your concerns when it comes to investment. A high LSAT score is critical to getting into law school and unless you have a natural aptitude for all three parts of the exam, you need to do some sort of class. A major part of what the LSAT tests is your ability to study and learn new skills.

I think Mr. Rich has a good suggestion. If not paralegal school, then perhaps looking for a job as a legal assistant. It would be a good idea to spend time around lawyers and law offices before deciding to make this your career. There is an enormout investment in money, time, and incredible stress to become and practice as an attorney. It has its benefits, but easy riches isn't one of them. You should get some experience in a law firm and ensure that you like the atmosphere and the work before you make such an huge investment.

You can reach Harkess & Salter LLC at (303) 531-5380 or info@Harkess-Salter.com. Stephen Harkess is an attorney licensed in the state and federal courts of Colorado. This answer is for general information only and does not create an attorney client relationship between Stephen Harkess or Harkess & Salter LLC and any person. You should schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your legal issues.

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Spend a couple of months reading on a daily basis at AbovetheLaw.com before you put ANY money or effort into this plan. http://abovethelaw.com/2013/01/gradenfreude-the-legal-profession-has-the-luck-of-the-irish/#more-216170

There are few law jobs for graduates of even good law schools these days, and there is compelling data to suggest that it will be more than a decade before there is "room" for new graduates from mid-level schools. If you don't have a relative who can guarantee employment in an on-going firm, or an entrepreneurial bent that will put you comfortably in a solo practice from the beginning of your career, this may not be a sound plan.

My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must not be relied upon as legal advice. I give legal advice only in the course of an attorney-client relationship. Exchange of information through Avvo's Questions forum does not establish an attorney-client relationship with me. That relationship is established only by individual consultation and execution of a written agreement for legal services.

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Posted

Have you considered vet school? It is not too late to go to medical school. Although teaching provides a very low income, it does allow you to have a schedule that mirrors that of your children.
All joking aside, this is a conversation better had in person. If you're every bored and feel like driving up to Longmont, I'd be happy to have you join me for a day to see and discuss what goes on in my office. Otherwise, I suggest you call some attorneys in your area and ask if you can shadow them for a day (week...).
If you are set on law school, then I suggest you figure out where you want to practice (which state) and apply to a school in that state. I attended DU. I'm a Colorado native and attended DU over CU because I thought it was more practical and less theoretical. It was a horrible decision. Yes, I had great professors, and made great friends, but I had student loans that were almost crippling. In state tuition would have been much wiser. Then, do all the student practicals you can, so you get to try different types of law. I don't suggest paralegal school - none of the credits would roll over to law school and the information/skills wouldn't directly transfer either.

Good luck!!! (And I really do suggest vet school!)

This legal information is provided for general legal purposes and does not establish a client-attorney relationship. Because of the limited information provided in the question, it is difficult to be certain that Counsel is answering the question correctly. You are encouraged to seek further information from an attorney directly so that follow up questions may be asked if necessary.

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David Littman

David Littman

Posted

Given the abundance of lawyers and the scarcity of open positions, it helps to be creative. There may be slots for military attorneys who attend law school while they are in the military. A good path might be ROTC to an officer's position. If you have a family member who can employ you, this would help. Certain law schools have extensive internship programs which help match law students with practicing lawyers.

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