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Everything posted by OzStudent

  1. If one additional firm blinks and follows the move to $1,700, I think that'll be the domino to tip it across Bay Street.
  2. Really friggin motivated 1L students, ones that will be doing more than the 2-3 hours per day that OP is aiming for
  3. No. Don't assume anything. Your LSAT score won't mean anything at the start of 1L, at Queens or Windsor or otherwise. I've seen a lot of overconfident students believe they can be at the top of the class. Math says otherwise. Only 20% of students are in the top 20% of the class. 80% of students are not going to be there. You also see yourself doing "2-3 hours of work a day" per your original post. I promise that there will be many many smart, motivated students at Windsor (with good 1L summaries to boot) studying 3x or even 4x the amount you are planning to study per day. Are you going to bank on being in the top 1/5th of students in that scenario? If you're set on BigLaw, plan on working hard, having no regrets towards your effort level in 1L, networking and chatting with people in the industry, and knowing that there are no guarantees no matter what school you choose.
  4. I guess all you can conclusively say is that Stikeman has a great real estate team. I guess my overall point would be that these rankings are "directionally" useful, but not "definitively" useful. Many times, I don't think any Band 1 firm can definitively call themselves head and shoulders above any other Band 2 firm (save for exceptions like Goodmans Restructuring and Blakes Competition or something like that). However, a Band 1 firm is probably almost always more sophisticated than a Band 4 firm in the same area. Good data point, but it would be smart to do more research to get a better feel. If you are really interested in Real Estate for example, you would look at the rankings, but also the Partner profiles on the website to see 1) how many Partners they have as a proxy of how large that practice is at the firm and 2) scroll through their experience to see the type of client roster that they regularly service.
  5. I think they're relevant, but far from definitive. A Band 1 firm probably has more expertise and does more volume of work than a Band 4 firm in the same area. But is that firm any better than a Band 2 firm? Should that be the basis for where you choose to work? Not necessarily so. First of all, know that these rankings are marketing fodder that firms submit to because they know clients and students care about it (practicing lawyers a bit less so). I know at my firm for example, our Business Development department expends significant amounts of time and effort just putting together applications, granting interviews and submitting packages every year to submit to Lexpert, Chambers etc. Takes up months out of their year doing this. Second, these rankings don't capture complexity and expertise. I think an issue is that these ranking publications over-index on corporate over litigation, and they over-index on "large deals". A very vanilla capital markets offering for $2 billion or something gets more weight in these rankings than a highly negotiated, super nuanced $150 million acquisition for example. The smaller deal may require better lawyering skills and may even lead to higher billings for the firm, but these things are not captured in the rankings.
  6. Haha probably accurate
  7. I'm a JD/MBA grad. You'll get like 0-2 1L interviews with those grades as a JD/MBA, so I wouldn't bank on 1L recruit, it's competitive. The MBA will help you out a lot more for OCIs the year after. I've seen students with grades similar to yours with 7-12 OCIs, most landing offers. Other than that, you should evaluate the cost, extra time and work associated with the MBA to determine whether its worth it.
  8. Completely overkill to pursue a CFA lol. There are a select number of PE firms in Toronto that frequently do buyouts (I'm assuming that's the market you are interested in). Fund formation is another matter, but I assume you mean PE buyouts. A select number of firms dominate the roster of Toronto PE clients. I guess you would want to target those firms. Torys has the OTPP, CPPIB and Clairvest relationships, which are great PE firms and clients. I think Torys is one of the firms where lawyers are specifically placed in PE practice groups. Goodmans has the ONEX relationship (Canada's largest PE firm, just bought West Jet yesterday). Davies has MM players like Torquest, Birch Hill and Ironbridge and represents high-end US PE firms (KKR, Apollo) making Canadian acquisitions all the time. If you're really interested in the space, keep up with the news (Lexpert, Ny Times Dealbook), some of the lingo and apply to these firms. But otherwise, I don't see you doing anything different than you would normally do to try to get Big Law OCIs (grades, clubs, extracurriculars).
  9. Just to provide some Osgoode context, we have the Entertainment and Sports Law Club that also runs the annual Entertainment and Sports Law Conference, a well attended event that puts you in front of Cassels Brock, Goodmans and a lot of in-house counsel that practice in the entertainment and production space in Toronto (since so many movies are filmed here - Entertainment One, Boat Rocker Media). https://oesla.ca There's also an upper year course for the subject: https://www.osgoode.yorku.ca/courses-and-seminars/entertainment-sports-law/ I think Osgoode will allow you to network more with people in the practice, just because you are in the city (if you are the type that knows how to take advantage of networking). Like the others have mentioned, Western is an excellent choice too.
  10. I'm a proponent that good writing comes from reading a lot of other good writing. I love this book. It's entertaining to read and gives you a flavour of good writing: https://www.amazon.ca/Point-Made-Write-Nations-Advocates/dp/0199943850
  11. https://www.zsa.ca/salary-guide/ Most people would say this ZSA guide is broadly accurate
  12. Some things I've observed after two summers with a firm. On point #1, try not to lead with "I am too busy". Make sure you are putting yourself in the shoes of the associate and making sure they know you are trouble-shooting on their behalf. If you are truly very busy, in order of helpfulness, consider (i) agreeing to take on the research, but proposing an alternative deadline that works for both of you - often the "real" client deadline is much later than you think and the associate has simply built in buffer and then (ii) truly expressing that you cannot take on the file, but you can find another student/teaming up with another student to look into it. On point #2, you have to make sure you are not reinventing the wheel each time, there are simply too many blind spots. Before you start running search strings, check: (i) Your internal firm database to see if anything has been written on the topic prior - even if it is not on the nose, something related will point you towards the chain of seminal cases - plagiarism doesn't exist when it's coming from within the firm; (ii) Asking the Associate/Law Librarian for a good seminal book (Waddams on Contracts for example) where you can start your research into that particular area of law; (iii) Using the "Browse Legal Topics" or "Words and Phrases" item on WestLaw before boolean search so that you can get a feel on that area of law; and (iv) Noting up the specific statute and pin-point reference on WestLaw to see what case law has arisen out of it if the research is attached to a statute. Remember, your job isn't to know everything. Your job is the rapid ability to get up to speed on a topic (efficiently), complexity reduction and being a safe confidence inspiring pair of hands. Keep a list of all your research avenues and search strings that you've used so that your associate has confidence you've checked under the right rocks. Keep at it!
  13. For what it's worth, UofT JD/MBAs are the only JD/MBA students I see place consistently across law, finance and consulting. Check linkedin. The 3 years for Ivey is a bit of a misnomer, as it eats into one of your summers and thus your opportunity to recruit for something other than law OCIs. There is no rush - with UofT, you can recruit two summers for law/finance or otherwise. You sound like someone with a lot of ambition, but no set direction yet. The UofT JD/MBA is built targeting people like you.
  14. If you are interested in the Toronto market, then Western. If you are actually interested in working in Calgary, then UofC.
  15. Prestige won't be factor except to lay people that aren't in the law - they are more likely to have "heard" of Osgoode. Other than that, I can guarantee no one practicing law will view you any differently. Queens is a respected school. Kingston is a lovely town and has a tight-knit campus with good school spirit. Since you are fully bilingual, you'll have a number of opportunities to recruit for the Ottawa/Toronto/Montreal markets as well, of which Queens is well-situated for geographically. If housing is indeed a big factor for you, I think I should point out that most students at Osgoode do not live on-campus or even necessarily in North York. Since "York University" is now on the subway line, you'll have several excellent and exciting living options within 30-40 mins on the subway. A lot of students live in the St.Clair West neighbourhood for example. You can Google a bit and see if there are rentals there that you are comfortable with and within your price range. Several are reasonable options, especially if you have 1-2 roommates. Congratulations on your options!
  16. If your goal is to work in these firms in an investing capacity (rather than as legal counsel), you won't make it as a JD, even with a M&A law background - you simply don't have the modelling, financial analysis and finance acumen required. M&A lawyers certainly go into PE/VC roles, but typically when they are very senior and well-connected. JDs who go into PE and Banking roles earlier in their career are almost always JD/MBAs and/or have taken investment banking jobs post-graduation or not long thereafter, like these folks: https://www.oncap.com/oncap-team/nicholas-moritsugu.html https://www.oncap.com/oncap-team/eugene-polevoy.html
  17. I'm just curious (and definitely no need to answer in insane detail) what number of hours qualified you for 5% - 10% - 15% - 20% - 25% - 30%? And is it solely via hours billed?
  18. Depending on the year, there may be something like 0-3 full-service firms doing an Articling intake. It's also not uncommon to see Associates lateral in to a big firm. Most often than not, they are in a specialty group such as Environmental/Municipal, Construction, Condominium, Trade and the like. It's a crappy feeling, but like the above posters have all noted, there are plenty of ways to a rewarding career, and to a full-service firm if you are still keen on it. Keep developing your practice interests and keeping in touch with people in that field.
  19. It takes time. To have a diverse and female Partnership, you need diverse and female 7th and 8th year Associates, and to have that, you need diverse and female Articling Students who want to stick around that long. All of these inclusion initiatives (in addition to things like the LAWS program mentioned above that is being invested in) take time to incubate - and on a far-longer timeline than simply from when you were in 1L. Look at the conversations the firms are willing to have and to host. Look not only to if they have diverse and female partners, but if they have these people in leadership positions at the firm. Do they speak? Are they marketed and supported and boosted? Look at firms that are willing to admit their short-fallings rather than shadow-box, and which ones invest real time, effort and money into addressing them. And eventually the firms will start looking closer to the city we live in.
  20. 100% this. Even in the summer, you'll be surprised at the leniency you may be afforded to try out different areas, so long as you are keen enough to get these types of experiences.
  21. Obviously it depends, but most people will tell you something like 9:30am to 6:30pm - 7:30pm on weekdays, with a few later nights per month (like to midnight) and maybe 5-10 additional hours on the weekend. Articling usually a bit worse than this. Litigation practice hours are a bit more predictable and corporate hours are a bit more up and down.
  22. I don't work at Davies, but I always found their recruiting to be very effective. They always got the type of students who wanted to work there to self-select their way into the firm. I can't say that for every firm, where some students just end up there because that's where they had an offer. That's really what good recruiting is - not just casting the widest net. I don't think you'll work significantly more hours at Davies. However, I do think they are known for being particularly responsive (even by Big Law standards). Also, the type of work the firm does is mainly high-stakes transactional work that demand a strict timeline, and it's a relatively small-firm actually in terms of headcount. All these factors could mean a slightly more intense experience, thus the reputation. The surest way to vet the firm is to speak to a critical mass of students there. If you are already questioning whether or not you would happy to work there at this stage of the game, I would give it careful thought.
  23. As an Associate, the billable target is just that - a target for your "billable" time. However, firms may also have targets for non-billable (i.e. docketable time) for things like business development, volunteering, writing articles etc. that goes into your target + review. Different firms have different targets, but I've seen/heard something like 1700 Billable Hours + 200 Non-Billable Hours as an annual target. As an Articling student, I wouldn't sweat this distinction too much. Build relationships and make sure you are known as someone reliable and who works hard within the firm. In my opinion, ANY work you submit during Articling (whether docketable or not) is fair game, up for review and will generate an impression towards you - as such, you should strive for quality in every piece of work. If a Partner is asking you to write a white-paper for marketing purposes for example, you may impress them just the same if it is well-written, well-researched and well-presented, even if it is ultimately non-billable. Similarly, they will certainly remember it negatively if your work is sloppily put together. Conversely, you may pour hours and hours into a document review project (all billable, at 100% efficiency), but you may receive little credit for it at the end of the week. It may even get written down! Try to docket/bill more than the average articling student, get a broad mix of billable/docketable tasks, and build your rep and you'll do great.
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