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adVenture

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adVenture last won the day on July 18 2019

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  1. It's been my been consistent experience over the past year (2019 call) that any practice area that is real estate related (for me, planning law) is extremely hot for new associates. I know three top-tier boutiques which are currently attempting (and failing) to hire associates with 0-3 years experience. It never hurts to reach out to a recruiter; ask for up-front salary information; and if it isn't good enough, don't interview. There is a lot of bad advice in this thread stoking generalized concerns about the market being bad for new calls because (even if you do not want to make a switch) it does not hurt to investigate your options. I don't understand why so many junior lawyers have this attitude to their career despite being very capable at handling complex problems on a day-to-day basis.
  2. I don't think things are this black and white. From representing provincial and municipal governments and private parties, I can tell you that government departments routinely ask for more than they are entitled to, and threaten "pens down" if they don't get what they want. Government has substantial bargaining power that lobbyists do not. Moreover, there are plenty of reported cases about this in land development, and there is even specialized unjust enrichment case-law about clawing about improperly requested benefits. The option for a private party is to either say "no" and wait months or years, say "yes" and do nothing to maintain the relationship, or say "yes" and litigate if litigation makes financial sense. So if you want to be ethically pure, I'd just avoid administrative law in general.
  3. I'm a municipal lawyer. Every significant development usually involves some kind of lobbying component and public relations strategy. For example, lawyers representing developers have some role in "lobbying" for a particular dispute resolution procedure from municipalities and the fine-tuning of development permissions that will either be accepted or litigated. On the government-side, I've also negotiated with lobbyists who want a quid pro quo benefit. I've written legislation for lobbyist organizations as well. But lawyers are not lobbyists, and as far as I'm concerned, the best (and only) qualification for being a lobbyist is being politically-connected.
  4. I was paid $20.00 an hour to work part-time and remotely for a start-up doing legal research, reviewing contracts, and other things related to that during 3L.
  5. I've always thought 40-50 was a standard normal week, at least it always has been for me, and then you have busy periods where you have to put in an extra 20-hours per week. I've always wondered this myself; I don't know. I've been told it doesn't matter outside the hours you put in if the quality of the work is good because you can't control what gets billed out.
  6. The interviews are less formal than Crown interviews, but there are preset questions which are scored on a grid. Generally municipalities do not assume you have much knowledge about their areas of law. You should probably just review annotations on the Municipal Act and the Planning Act for general knowledge on how municipal and planning law work along with having working knowledge of general civil litigation (tort, contact) and drafting contracts/by-laws, i.e., you should know that the Region of Peel is an upper-tier municipality and the City of Mississauga is a lower-tier municipality and each have different areas of jurisdiction. When I did my interviews I would review each official plan for general background and that tended to impress interviewers (and ultimately got me a position).
  7. I don't think a hegemonic "firm culture" exists outside of specific departments in bigger firms, and to me its a little misleading because "firm culture" is really just reflective of the management style of the partner or partners from whom you will take instructions. I articled in government, worked at a medium-sized firm in southern Ontario, and I am now working at another medium-sized firm in Toronto, which participates in the recruit. In all honesty, you probably won't be able to figure out how your managers are until you work with them first, outside of finding out from interviews if they are introverted/extroverted, agreeable or not, and etc. In government, my articling principal was an extremely conscientious and soft-spoken manager in an understaffed department who expected me to put in 35-hours a week and did not micromanage my work. I probably worked a consistent 50-hours so she was ecstatic. We did regular performance reviews. Because we were understaffed I was doing work probably more suited for someone with much more experience, i.e., doing final drafts of submissions, and etc., but there was nothing we could do because a lack of funding. At my first firm, it was a really terrible culture because it turned out (and I did not know this originally) that the partner to whom I reported was known for going through junior associates because he would micromanage everything, was a "my way or the highway" situation, and overall was very difficult to work with. My hours were long because there was a constant backlog of work because juniors kept quitting, like I did after deciding I didn't become a lawyer to take shit for no reason. My current firm is basically the same as it was for me when articling, except now I'm expected to answer emails/take phone calls at anytime before midnight, the work standards are (much) higher, and the hours are slightly longer.
  8. I wasn't aware that I could make a fool of myself arguing in favour of a minor administrative requirement like a reference letter or reference which has wide industry acceptance notwithstanding the grumblings of academics with their own agendas. Anyways I've stated my position and you are free to disagree. I would just question the utility and practicality of your position, given that you are essentially self-selecting yourself out of a substantial plurality of potential positions based on an idealogical position, whether right or wrong.
  9. Arbitrarily redefining "racism" to be a loaded term such as "white supremacy" is a cheap parlour trick as far as I'm concerned that is unfortunately all too common in -ism studies. While I can appreciate that (ideologically) conservative legal doctrine can favour the status quo, which may or may not perpetuate existing inequalities and be racist, smearing a lobbying group for not sharing your political views is unreasonable. Okay thanks for denouncing yourself for me. If you are seriously think that people who have conservative political views on the myriad of subjects you just listed are white supremacist and racist, well I think it's just better for you to say that clearly instead of making a flippant suggestion and innuendo ... Edit: To confirm, I am against racism, but not for fashionable sjw-ism.
  10. I'm a junior lawyer. I'm not concerned about checking someone's references. But you're taking an unreasonable position and missing the point. Anyone can put on an act for an interview. A reference, especially one you well know, can speak to how to actually are as a person in a little more detail. Whether that is through a letter or a phone call. Frankly I find it rich that there is such opposition over reference letters when it is not unusual for junior lawyers to have a starting salary of 100,000+ professional positions where a 6 figure starting salary. This is not some mcjob where you have no responsibility, ethical or otherwise. More information is always better.
  11. I can't speak for other firms specifically, but my firm has made it clear that it is following the general approach of other firms in Toronto and not doing anything original. Fingers crossed that people are paid what they should be .
  12. The practice of law is a business and not just academic; there are important soft skills that contribute to someone's success, the big one being your interpersonal and networking skills. Reference letters and references are one way for a firm to get more than a snap shot of your personality and whether you are extroverted or confident enough to be a lawyer who can generate business and be pleasant to work with generally. Form letters from professors are good enough to check application boxes, but I've personally gotten positions upon the strength of references who were willing to aggressively advocate on my behalf.
  13. My firm reversed the salary cuts and is providing everyone with back pay.
  14. In my opinion, the best, most out-of-the-world and lucrative area of law is space force law.
  15. A B+ average got me two dozen or so interviews.
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