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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/04/18 in all areas

  1. 10 points
  2. 5 points
    Briefly: criminal law I enjoy it because I love being in court thinking on my feet, there are always new challenges with new legal issues arising that stretch my brain, and I love dealing with the wide variety of people I deal with. We have less paperwork than other lawyers, but there is always billing, legal aid applications and other requirements on their end, trust accounting etc and writing submissions for court. I work in both the courtroom and my office, but a lot of what is done in the office can be done at home or a library if I prefer. There is all the prep to be done for court - reviewing disclosure (which I guess is a form of paperwork), researching case law, getting people ready to testify, etc, and then the time in court, and then administrative work related to running my firm. Stress comes and goes. Trials are exhilarating but also stressful, but not necessarily in a bad way. A lot of things become routine and are not stressful and the longer I practice, the more things fall into that category. Re: work-life balance - that's difficult to answer. In some ways I have a lot of flexibility because I am my own boss and subject to court commitments I can set my own hours or work at home. But I need to be constantly available to clients who get arrested on evenings, weekends and holidays (our student handles routine calls but may need advice or need me for more serious charges) or otherwise need to talk to me, and especially during trials, review and prep can go well into the night, at home. I have a family and I have a life outside of work and I somehow find time for that so it can't be that bad. It is hard to turn my brain off work though. I have not noticed a drastic change in the almost a decade since I graduated. There is always plenty of demand for criminal lawyers and I find that I am more in demand the more experience I gain. Criminal lawyers are valued for our expertise/reputation which grows with the years if all goes well. So what is working for someone 5-10 years out is not necessarily going to apply to a new call. I am not sure if things are different for new calls now than they were when I was one, but I get the sense it is tougher for them to build a client base and earn a living.
  3. 3 points
    I've found exercise to be critical. Even if it's just going for a quick run in the morning a few times a week, I've noticed an improvement in my energy level throughout the day. I also like to go for short walks throughout the day. Most of the time it's just to clear my head (e.g., when I'm about to switch tasks), but sometimes I find it helps me to think through a memo or legal issue. Coffee helps, but I'm doing my best to prevent myself from getting to a point where I'm relying too heavily on it. Instead, I make sure that I'm drinking plenty of water.
  4. 3 points
    I wouldn’t note the “correction,” just say it’s an updated resume. I’m not sure why you think it’s dishonest to call a typo correction an update. When people send drafts around nobody says “attached is an updated AND CORRECTED draft” if they fixed nits in addition to updates. This distinction exists only in your head, at least when talking about typos. If you say “corrected” people are going to say “wait, what, is there a substantive correction in here? What is it? Is the kid not in law school? Did he fail torts? Now I have to re-read this and figure out wtf is going on.”
  5. 3 points
    Hey this happens all the time. Everyone moves around for reasons like this. You arrange a meeting with your boss. Tell them the truth, keep it simple. You like working at this firm. You have been offered a position elsewhere for more pay doing x, y, z. You are giving them x weeks notice (whatever is in your contract). You are going to take this position but want to discuss your departure with regard to passing on files, training a replacement, etc. Most of all you want to emphasize how wonderful the firm has been, that you are appreciative of their support and training, and how much you want to maintain a good relationship going forward. This is a professional decision and not a personal one. Then end the meeting. Don’t start carrying on and essentially asking them to make you feel better about this. It’s a professional decision, not a personal one, so be a professional throughout.
  6. 2 points
    I'll definitely be trying to call tomorrow. I dont see why they couldn't take more students after September 5th if some students have until September 10th to decide. That isn't too far into classes for a person to catch up.
  7. 2 points
    Rejection letter aka "please fuck off."
  8. 2 points
    Law is an entrepreneurial profession, even when you are someone else's employee. I don't recommend always leaving a good position only for more money, and it's always worth weighing what you have before you jump for something better, but if you really are confident that something better is available, that's what you should do. There are no rewards for "loyalty" when that's really just a way of saying that you've put someone else's needs in this profession above your own. Putting your family first, people you love ... that's admirable. Putting a boss first is just stupid. Do what's best for you, because everyone else will do the same.
  9. 2 points
    Seattle for sure if you can afford it. Location, location, location.
  10. 1 point
    Hi all! I was a student member of an admissions committee during my third year of law school, and I thought I would share some insights from the experience that I thought would be helpful. They're mostly focused on your personal statement and references, because those are the parts of your application that are most easily improved, and where the path to "improvement" is least obvious (everyone knows what a better LSAT or GPA looks like). A) First of all, consider what type of personal statement you are being asked for. Does the school want a generic statement, or do they ask you to answer specific questions? If they ask specific questions and you fail to answer them, or you try to force a generic personal statement to fit the questions asked, this will hurt your application. B) If you're applying in a special category (e.g., access, mature, indigenous, etc.), make sure that at least some elements of your application indicate why you fit in that category. It's not enough just to check the box and then talk about why you would make a great law student generally. Those categories exist for several reasons, but two reasons stood out to me as particularly significant: (1) to increase the diversity of the student body and thus the legal profession; and (2) to give talented students who have faced challenges the opportunity to demonstrate that their "numbers" don't reflect their potential. Some students fit both of those descriptions, while others might only fit one. If you're applying in a special category, tell the admissions committee about (1) the benefits that your unique life experiences will bring to the school and the profession and/or (2) the reasons why the challenges you've dealt with in the past will not stop you from being successful in law school. C) Most of the generic personal statements that I read addressed three things: 1. Why the applicant wants to go to law school/be a lawyer; 2. Why the applicant will make a great law student/lawyer; and 3. Why the applicant wants to go to this specific law school. D) I would encourage students not to spend as much space on #3 as they currently do. Compliments about the law school don't usually get you very far, unless they are very specific to your interests, e.g., "As you can see from my degree in biochemistry, I am very interested in the natural sciences, so I am especially interested in X law school because it is the only school with a natural sciences law clinic." Complimenting the law school in general doesn't help the committee - they already think their school is great, and they want to know about you. Compliments that are overblown can actually hurt your application. If you say something about the school being "world-renowned for their legal clinics" when they are not that well-recognized, the committee will think you're blowing smoke, and it won't help your chances. E) As for #1 and #2, the most important thing to do is to provide meaningful examples. The admissions committee is made up of faculty and upper year students. They want evidence or a foundation for your assertions. Bald statements that you are "responsible", "hard-working", "intelligent", or "interested in a career in social justice" will get you nowhere, because literally everyone is making those claims. Applicants that stand out have concrete support that buttress their most important points. E.g., "I have volunteered for the past five years for a victims services organization, and this has fostered my interest in one day becoming a Crown prosecutor." or "My experience working in a law firm gave me exposure to the area of practice I'm most interested in while also honing my attention to detail and my ability to handle a heavy workload." F) Always remember that the people reading your application will know nothing about you other than what is on the papers in front of them. They'll have your transcript, LSAT, personal statement, letters of reference, and the other documents (if any) that you were required to submit. From that they will form their entire impression of you. It might be worthwhile to ask a trustworthy acquaintance (perhaps a friend of a friend) who does not know you well to read your package and see how they would describe you based on that alone. Their answers may surprise you. G) There is no need to write poetically in your personal statement, and if prose is not your strength, you should avoid it entirely. It adds very little to your statement and can end up being a distraction. I also never saw a hook that worked, e.g., "it was a dark and stormy night..." Save those for your applications to American schools. Remember paragraph F above if you plan to use your personal statement to tell one story or are intending to build the entire thing around one anecdote. That will end up being all that the committee knows about you. Ask yourself seriously whether it will be enough. H) Use your letters of reference (if they are requested, don't submit them if they are not) to provide further support for the narrative you've built in your personal statement and other documents. The strongest letters of reference don't seem to come out of left field. The feeling that the committee should get while reading your letter is reassurance that their instincts about you were accurate; the letter of reference provides independent confirmation that you really are as great as you seem. It should go without saying (but sadly it doesn't) that your letters of reference should be from the type of referees the school has asked for, and should never ever be from a family member or close friend. Anyone who has known you since childhood is likely a bad choice. Those letters rarely read as objective accounts of an adult student's attributes. If you really can't get a good reference from the type of referee requested, explain why you were unable to do so. I) If there is an obvious and marked area of weakness in your application, e.g., an academic year where you did particularly badly, or a poor LSAT score, you should quickly address why that incident doesn't reflect your true potential and then move on. The committee will almost certainly notice a significant area of weakness and will wonder what caused you to falter. Don't make excuses, and don't take up your whole application explaining yourself. If there isn't good explanation, you'll just have to bite the bullet and focus on your strengths in the rest of the application. Keep in mind, though, that it's human nature for members of the committee to speculate to themselves about what caused your slip if you don't provide an explanation. That's all I can think of for now. I hope this is helpful and doesn't come across as a silly diatribe. Best of luck to everyone who is or will be applying!
  11. 1 point
    Hello everyone, I am a long-time member and a mostly inactive user. Occasionally, I return to peruse some personal triumphs and questions from other posters. I love the community here (even with the occasional bickering and snark). I hope to selfishly pick your brains for answers or thoughts. A little background: Osgoode graduate, 2018 call, currently on E.I., zero student debts, visible minority, looking for my first job. 1. For my first job, should I apply broadly or apply in my area of interest? I am looking for a family law associate position anywhere in Ontario. I happen to be a brooding introvert who is not great at networking. As such, I am relying almost exclusively on OBA Career Center & Ontario Reports for job postings. I imagine thousands of other new calls are doing the same. I know people who have networked aggressively and found gainful employment 1-2 months after call. However, my networking efforts had been awkward during law school (I found that many don't share my geeky interests). I know many here and elsewhere in my life have suggest to apply BROADLY, which I take to mean to apply to areas that I am not even familiar with or had experience working for lawyers. Franky, I hardly know what to put on my cover letter if I were to apply to, say, insurance defence, coming from a family law/criminal defence background. Even if I manage to persuasively suggest that my skills and experience are transferable, I will be totally sunk when a professional question is thrown my way. Lastly, I can pull 8-8 shifts 5-6 days per week without a whisper of fatigue or complaint, but only if I work in my area of interest. During articling, it didn't feel like work helping those with family law issues. But man, even drafting a simple motion in an unrelated area felt like such a chore. Admittedly, it was partly because I had little to no experience which made me hover at my principal's door frequently. 2. How much consideration should I allocate to a firm's reputation, its lawyer's reputation, when deciding whether I should apply? Let's assume for a moment that I am applying only to family law firms. There are rogue and unverifiable reviews (LawyerRatingz & Google Reviews) circulating around the internet for some firms which at present, are looking for new associates. I understand that in family law, with matters being acrimonious and warlike, a frustrated/agitated/berserk ex-spouse can slander the other party's legal representation. I do take online reviews with a lorry of salt. That said, after working with many family law lawyers for more than 2 years, I know there is some grain of truth to some of these angry reviews. I know some family lawyers whose case will always be going to a LONG trial and has a certain reputation that is not flattering. I am certain as lawyers, we have much to work on with respect to client communication. However, will a lawyer (partner) or firm's reputation infect all associates? I wonder how a lawyer's behavior in court reflects his/her behavior toward associates? Sometimes I do wonder why a firm is frequently looking for associates. 3. When should I start panicking when I am not receiving any interview offers? Okay, so far it has been only 2 months since my call. I have only sent out a few applications with no results. My financial situation is not dire, my student debts have been paid off. Still, my anxiety eats away at my conscience. After studying/working non-stop for 4 years, the lull just does not feel natural. I have some books of interest on my shelf which I would love to read, but my soul itches when I see job postings. With every passing week, my anxiety grows progressively worse sitting at home (I do exercise). 4. During my unemployment period, should I read up on practice books & case law to keep my mind up to speed? I am one mouse click away from ordering a slew of legal books to read ($1,500 in total) while unemployed. I know law is about "practice" and not just reading about law or commentaries. The rational part of me says, "How much can you realistically retain while not in practice?" Nonetheless, I am concerned that once I have been unemployed for too long, I will forget how to do even the most basic applications and motions. Conversely, if I were to be hired tomorrow, I don't feel confident representing my clients. I sometimes think, by retaining my service, a client is doing a huge disfavor to him/herself because I am SOOOO inexperienced. Knowing the fact scenarios involved in family law, I would hate to learn at my client's expense - LITERALLY! Oh that's an issue I didn't see because I am too inexperienced. 5. Should I be concerned that I am applying to too few positions? (i.e. not job searching hard enough) Hitherto, I am quite selective. To give everyone a perspective, I have sent out fewer than 10 applications since July 1, 2018. I apologize in advance if the post reads like I am uploading my anxieties and doubts online. I am venting a little. I want to thank everyone here in advance for your feedback - whether critical of my position/decisions or soothing words of comfort or anything in between. Cheers.
  12. 1 point
    Only Yokels wear white after Davies PFO's.
  13. 1 point
    It was the same for me. Most of the ones I found helpful were the Irwin Law books on the various topics (torts, contract, etc.) I highly recommend these for anyone who wants to augment what the case book is giving them (which sometimes can be not very much). But if you’re not already in school and going to class, then I’d start there, because it’s not always that you’d need the supplemental books. Profs can be really good at explaining concepts and some case books aren’t terrible.
  14. 1 point
    This is insane Hope atleast you hear by tomorrow!
  15. 1 point
    Here's a post from a few years ago that I tend to agree with (and they, unlike me, seem to have/had some expertise at least in US market), no pictures or fancy colours, just basic info like name and contact info, and providing LinkedIn address: https://www.lexisnexis.com/legalnewsroom/lexis-hub/b/careerguidance/posts/business-cards As another site also a few years ago said, many people won't expect law students to have cards, or will think you're a tool if you offer them, etc. The purpose for having them is for the rare person who wants a card, and then you - unlike others - have one. Whether you call it a contact card or business card. A discussion from a few years ago here (there have been many re business cards for law students), Osgoode encouraging students to get business cards, the prevailing sentiment which I agree with was what I said above, get them, just don't use them (unless someone asks):
  16. 1 point
    I would feel really weird asking someone who didn't have a job for a business card. In fact, I would never even think to do so.
  17. 1 point
    Get away from your desk every once in a while. Stretch your legs. If you have access to your window, stand and stare out of it for a few minutes and marvel at the mass of humanity going about their business below (and spot the crazy uber eats cyclist for extra points!) I remember the first couple of weeks of articling were quite rough for me. But soon I got used to it and the stamina built up accordingly. It's kind of like training for a marathon. Initially, you can only go for 30 minutes before needing a break. Over time you can do 1 hour, 1.5 hours, 2 hours, etc. and then you're eventually able to do the whole thing. Hang in there.
  18. 1 point
  19. 1 point
    Short, but regular, breaks have always helped me with mental stamina. When switching tasks, I might do a quick online crossword, or grab a coffee alone or with a friend, or check LS, or wander the halls for another associate in need of a break, or something else to check out a bit before diving into something new. Helps me refresh and keep the fatigue from setting in sooner.
  20. 1 point
    Slow down, focus on accuracy over speed. Understand the passage before looking at the answer choices. For strengthen and weaken questions there is always an issue with the argument. You must identify this issue before going to the answer choices. This approach will greatly improve your accuracy which, in turn, improves speed. As for studying for a retake, just continue to do timed sections with thurough review. Make sure you understand why you picked the wrong answer.
  21. 1 point
    @Diplock I didn’t see anyone sneer at the poster....
  22. 1 point
    You all are making this way more complicated than it is, or needs to be, and in the process of doing so you're sneering at some questions and some people that really don't deserve to be sneered at. In a current, Western context (I understand that in Asia it's very different, and doubtless this is true in other places also) business cards are for one thing. They are to easily hand off your contact information to someone who may want to contact you in the future, without the bother of everyone pulling out pen and paper or entering digits into a smart phone. The thing that WILL replace business cards eventually isn't LinkedIn - it's the sort of phone "bump" apps that instantly drop that information into the other person's phone. I don't know when or if these things will be adopted widely. But LinkedIn actually replaces the Rolodex, and has done so almost completely. It's a way of keeping track of established contacts, rather than keeping cards of any sort in a file. But as Providence has pointed out, it isn't a good solution for someone who you've just met. Now, I absolutely agree that law students aren't likely to need business cards, at least not for their own professional advancement, because in almost all situations where you are networking with lawyers or similar, you'll be following up with them if at all. In other words, you want their contact information rather than the reverse. Note that this is generally, though not universally, true. Usually it's the person in an inferior position who wants the other individual's card and the person in a superior position to gives it (or not). That said, there are cultural differences from profession to profession, and I've been informed that accounting students, for example, routinely carry cards and that employers will take them. Why? Not sure. But that example alone is enough to convince me that mocking the question is misplaced. Further, exactly because there will be situations where the law student is not the inferior person in the encounter, there will be times that having a card is helpful. If, for example, that student attends a career day back at their undergraduate program, or at their high school. I use business cards a lot. The reasons why are particular to my position and my practice and I'm not saying they are universal at all. But there are a lot of situations where someone may want your contact information and pulling out a pen or a smart phone is inconvenient. Some students could indeed encounter those situations. Some lawyers will encounter them a lot. Some hardly ever. But the question itself isn't ridiculous. It's overthinking it that's ridiculous. Are you going to find yourself in situations where another person, who you've just met, would reasonably want your phone number and/or email for future reference? If yes, you likely want or need business cards. If no, then not.
  23. 1 point
    When deals involve cross-border issues, large Canadian firms, and or corporations/financial institutions, etc., have U.S. counsel retained to look after the U.S. portion of the deal.
  24. 1 point
    Nice profile photo. Linkedin has basically replaced business cards. It’s taken me basically forever to get rid of my current batch...and it’s not for want of opportunities or effort.
  25. 1 point
    Send the updated CV to everyone with a note that says something to the effect of ‘Please find attached my updated CV, which includes a correction along with the addition of an award I recently received for XYZ. I would be greatful if this updated CV could be included as part of my application. Thank you for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from (or meeting with if you’ve heard from them already) your firm.’ In all likelihood, they’ll replace your old one with this new one and never ask you anything about the original. But you’ve been honest and upfront by noting there is also a correction (although no need to elaborate on what it is unless you’re specifically asked). We will look at your CV multiple times during this process, and it’s not unusual to receive updates.
  26. 1 point
    There are two sections in 1L at TRU and the transfer students are placed in those sections with the 1Ls for the courses canuckfanatic mentioned.
  27. 1 point
    What a legend, congratulations! You'd better get yourself ready for next week ! 😂
  28. 1 point
    got off the waitlist on thursday (aug 30)!!! will be accepting
  29. 1 point
    - Terrible advice. Only go to the USA if you plan to spend your career there. Otherwise you're better off sticking things out for TRU or even re-applying next year. Further, despite their very low admission criteria the cost of tuition at Seatle is apparently $46,500 per year (AMERICAN $). My entire education at the U of C, over three years, doesn't even surpass that amount. CRAZY!
  30. 1 point
    This profession loves us some documentation. Get medical records backing up your claims. We also really like structured programming: “took twelve weeks of intensive Cognitive Behavioural therapy under the supervision of a licensed psychiatrist and saw immediate results reflected in my A average during third year” sounds a lot better than “improved my diet and took up biking so I should be fine”. I have Anxiety fwiw. Always have to some degree but it has worsened considerably over the years. I sought help, I check in regularly, and I maintain good lifestyle habits so I don’t (yet) have to take regular medication. But I would not hesitate to do that if it were called for and my health provider advised it. You can do this job having that diagnosis but you must be prepared to tackle it head on and aggressively. Structure your application with Action-Result and it will be more compelling.
  31. 1 point
    I would recommend people get used to saying they went to Thompson Rivers instead of “TRU” if that’s a concern.
  32. 1 point
    I could write several essays on this topic, but it's really only worth engaging in this discussion at roughly the level it started, which is not very deeply. So here are three quick observations. 1. Even though the idea of buying an existing practice wasn't floated by the OP, it was introduced and became a discussion point. There are very few situations, and they would all be exceptional, where I can see value in a sole "buying" the existing practice of another lawyer. Having a relationship with a retiring lawyer an be mutually beneficial, because that lawyer will continue to get calls well into retirement. Some arrangement where you give that lawyer a percentage of business referred, and they perform just a little bit of client management to keep them happy, for example. Over time you assume their client base, and they get a nice stream of revenue past the point where they have officially retired. But actually "buying" the business? It's a collection of out-dated books, an old desk, and a lease you may not want. 2. Asking about all sole practitioners in one breath is ridiculous. The range of what a sole practice might look like is vast. At least narrow the question to the area(s) of practice you propose to enter, and we can have an intelligent conversation. 3. In my area of practice (criminal law) there are soles who literally aren't making enough to feed themselves without help, and there are soles who are the best and most sought after criminal lawyers in the country. This both emphasizes the point above, and should also indicate how ridiculous it is to try taking an "average" snapshot of the whole and imagining that might reflect your experiences. In sum, you really need to think about this more, and come back with a better idea of what you're even asking about.
  33. 1 point
    It's certainly something you would apply for, but you do need to know where to look in the first place. As far as I know, it's different than regular articling where almost everything under the sun counts. I.e think clerk at the ICJ, not family law articling student in France. Your school's CDO should be able yo help. If not... try McGill since some number of our grads go and do this each year.
  34. 1 point
    Just adding my voice to the chorus. This has come up before and every time all the lawyers indicate it’s a bad idea. Good on you for asking first.
  35. 1 point
    For what it's worth, if a student gave me their "business card", I won't be impressed. I'd probably think "what the fuck" and promptly lose the card. At these events, you should be trying to get their cards, not handing out yours.
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