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BringBackCrunchBerries

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  1. Yeah maybe forget about the "commercial" part of things and shoot for any solicitor job at a smaller outfit. You'll do lots of real estate and some of it will be commercial. Having litigation experience can be attractive to solicitor employers if those employers are fat old lawyers who have never been to court. On the rare occasion that something needs to be spoken to, they can maybe send you rather than refer the file out! There are several solicitors in my area who have hired someone younger like this, probably with a mind to diversifying the practice a little bit.
  2. You'll often hear lawyers say that law school did not prepare them for the actual practice of law. They mean the day-to-day realities of the business of law. A great deal of being a practicing lawyer is figuring out efficiencies and effectively managing your own time. You can justify spending an expansive amount of time on nearly every file. For example: Should you, personally, be doing this task or should you delegate it to staff? You could do much more research on this topic but is it necessary for the task at hand? You want to take an hour or two to draft the perfect intelligent response but there are other things to do and all that is required is a half page template letter. (Should you be so lucky) You could take on that case/file but do you have time? And a thousand other hypotheticals... Being inundated by required readings and assignments in law school is perhaps the single greatest element of practical legal education that law school presents. You can't do it all as a lawyer and those who try to do it all often burnout. You can't do it all as a law student either. You need to learn to triage your tasks and manage your own time in an efficient, effective, and healthy way. The best thing you can do is figure out systems that work for you, personally. Whether or not you should do all the readings is personal and class specific. I had classes where, in hindsight, there was a very poor return on the time investment to do the readings. I had classes where the readings were very valuable. I had classes where I didn't do the readings and it burned me a bit. You just need to be careful when making those decisions and try to consciously be making such determinations within the context of making responsible, efficient choices.
  3. Email - easy to send; not awkward; easy for the prof to ignore or forget about. Phone call - not as easy; can be awkward; creates the personal connection that makes the prof feel a moral obligation. Office hours visit - Can be even more awkward; eye contact and body language creates an even greater personal connection that makes it nearly impossible for the prof to not feel a moral obligation, ensuring that they will complete your letter even if just to make sure that you don't show up during their office hours anymore. Finding out your prof's home address and ringing their doorbell unannounced during dinner time - Can be the most awkward; be prepared to run if your prof is the type to not like unexpected visitors; the violation of their personal space and boundaries creates a high-risk, high-reward scenario --- you might end up with a letter that slams your personal judgment, or you just might get invited in for spaghetti!
  4. I think you know that nobody here can answer this. You'll have to talk to your employer to see if there is any feasible arrangement and then perhaps the Law Society to see if whatever that arrangement is would satisfy articling requirements. In all likelihood this is the first major fork in your career road. Choose wisely! lol
  5. Any sort of explanation in your PS is very likely not going to help, anyway. I would probably not mention it. It is what it is.
  6. The majority of your law school grades will probably come from questions on your open book exams that are based on long fact patterns. For example, a two page story about a messy commercial real estate deal that is followed by the question, "you are a new associate at LAW FIRM. Discuss any potential claims your client may have." There might be two dozen hypothetical claims, and you might not have time to type anything about half of them. Often a law student can waste time and lose marks by getting lost in a narrative argument. If you've done a lot of scientific reasoning, it's probably not your inclination to make narrative arguments and it will be more second nature to stick to the facts, and perhaps make clear and concise arguments. If you have a handle on deductive vs. inductive reasoning, which someone from the sciences should through hypothesis formation and all that jazz, moving from a fact pattern to a generalization about a potential legal claim may be somewhat familiar. This is often a form of inductive reasoning (or something close to it). Example - claim X needs to have the components A, B, and C. Client Y's situation has components A, B, and D. Based on the following reasons there is a good chance that a court would consider component D to satisfy the elements of component C (this is where you insert your argument from precedent cases, or what have you). Therefore this claim would have a strong chance of success. You're kind of forming a hypothesis based on inductive reasoning. Sort of kind of. I think having read a lot of scientific research papers can also help people in reading legal cases. They are often more similar to a research paper than an essay. If a research paper has a hypothesis, method, results, and discussion, a legal case might have similar elements like an issue, a legal framework, a holding, and some obiter discussion. It's not like having a science degree is an advantage but various types of backgrounds can have different advantages.
  7. Aha, so you’re a lawyer by blood. It’s not the right political climate but there are public sector lawyer gigs that share the 9-5 job traits you are looking for while also allowing some of that client service, public interaction, and brain flexing you liked from the law experience. Legal clinic cultures for example tend to be 9-5 with great work life balance and not terrible pay - and you get to practice which keeps doors open.
  8. Honestly, I felt that a science degree provided a pretty great foundation for the type of reasoning that is tested by most law school exams.
  9. That's not really what I meant by fulfilling. I don't mean it in the "chase your dream job" kind of way. I don't think I admonished or mocked anything. I'm talking about fulfillment in a more granular sense. Do you like thinking on your feet? Helping people make decisions with their assets? Do you like explaining complex things to people? Problem solving? Thinking about big ideas and policies? Do you like competing? Do you like being relied upon? Managing your own schedule/time? You still haven't really explained what it is exactly about lawyer work that turns you off (is unfulfilling) or what it is exactly about the wonderfully general "government jobs" that you think you would find fulfilling. This is your business and you don't have to post about it if you don't want to. Stability + a hierarchy to climb can be indirect sources of fulfillment but they don't have much to do with the work itself, and you can find lots of stable lawyer jobs and certainly lots with hierarchies to climb. There are hundreds of different ways to be a lawyer. This is a very common position for people - they kind of default to law school (I did) and then don't gravitate towards any kind of specific lawyering job while in law school so they turn their mind to the gigantic, nebulous realm of "government jobs", often mostly because the salaries are okay and there are benefits and the 9-5 looks better than the infamous 8-8 of big law. The part that is often missing, at least in an explicit sense, as any type of real self-reflection on the granular sources of personal fulfillment. I would think that there are reasons you went to law school aside from the fact that your grades were good enough to do it. Maybe some of those reasons actually map well to government work - if you loved the policy discussion in your law classes, for example, there is some government work that will toot your horn. But there might be reasons that you went to law school that would map better to a career as a lawyer. I tried to open up the discussion a bit. If you don't think it's productive to, no worries.
  10. Depending on who you are, a question like this might be upside-down. The normal course for people in our society is to think about what they want to be, then do the specific things to try to become that thing. Lots of people never actually end up becoming that thing. Lots of people who do end up becoming that thing are not fulfilled. The other option is to think of the things that you find fulfilling, and then do those things. They will take you somewhere. Why do you want to work in a government job? What is it about what you find fulfilling that you think maps well to a government job? Why does it matter that you have or will have a law degree?
  11. Hello. Non-Toronto fly on the wall here who has never worked in Big Law and does not docket time, let alone bill any hours. Anyone care to translate what ~2100 billable hours in Toronto or New York (and other hour benchmarks) would look like in terms of total hours worked per average week? Just curious. I understand lawyers would have different efficiency levels.
  12. If you are still in school (or even if not), dare I say - have you gone to their office to talk to them in person? Some professors are bad at email. I say this at the risk of offending @ProfReader !!!
  13. I am a crammer and have always been good at tests / logic stuff. I took a few weeks completely off after my final law school exam, and maybe four days completely off after the first bar exam. So I probably did about 12 days of ~11 hours worth of review for each bar exam, and relied on the Table of Contents rather than an index. Time was spent doing one read through of the materials (skimming some sections I had a decent handle on) and then practice tests to get a feel for the TOC and a feel for the correct timing (calculate how long you have, on average, for each question and make sure your practice test pace references that). This all worked fine for me, but as @TdK said what works does really depend on personal characteristics.
  14. I heard this from several interviewers when I reached out for feedback after doing 35 OCIs and receiving no in firm interviews. If you are offered an OCI it is because you are good enough on paper. At this point, the firms mostly care about two things: Hygiene and a firm handshake. If you make sure that you smell REALLY good, and you make sure to almost crush the interviewers' hands during the introduction shake, you will probably make partner.
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