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About jd2018canwest

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  1. Yes, I agree, Federal Government processes are extremely rigid. If you have a JD and they ask for a Masters in social sciences you'll get screened out. If you have a Masters in criminology and they ask for one in economics...yup you'll get screened out. It also takes forever to hear back and many times you're in limbo for many months or even a year. I don't recommend anyone waste their time applying to the Federal government. There is also the Phoenix pay issues where if you are in the public service commission category (most of the federal jobs except for a few excluded agencies like RCMP, Canadian Forces) you might not get paid for months, literally. Imagine making peanuts to begin with and then not getting paid for 3 months straight. True story. For provincial government jobs (speaking about AB and BC because Ontario has a strict hiring freeze) you can apply to a position even with 0 of the required experience they ask for and you can still get screened in and potentially hired by leveraging the JD. Very few people have a JD outside lawyer positions and most of the time the JD can be used as a 1:1 experience equivalent, or simply as a unique qualification that is relevant to all government positions. And if the positions are quasi legal, regulatory, or enforcement related, it will probably get you screened into the process. The only time it doesn't is if they ask for something very specific experience wise (policy positions or experienced investigator), or if it requires 3+ years of related experience and you have none. As far as pay goes, BC government pays about 20-30k lower on average for the same job than AB government. But BC government has way more positions and is hiring more overall right now (about 5x more). With AB government there will be probably a more stringent hiring freeze with the next election in the spring (UCP will probably win). But you could get any position that pays in the 60-90k range even if temporary, and then as soon as you get that you are eligible to apply to internal positions. There are many, many internal positions that are permanent and limited competitions meaning that no one external can apply. And the internal positions tend to pay even more in the 80-120k range from the get go. Also most are manager level positions in terms of the classification. The competition for good internal positions is very weak (a handful of people at most) and everyone running against you will have at most a Bachelors. So, is it possible to go from a new grad to a 80k+ job within one year of grad in government and potentially in a permanent management level position at that? The answer is yes. Many have done it before who chose alternatives to articling. I think people on the outside really underestimate just how many internal positions there are and just how few people apply to them. Most of them are actually management level positions classification wise which tend to prefer higher educational credentials. It's hard to get into government initially, but afterwards it's very easy to move up and around literally after only a few months.
  2. I never said they pay you 100k+ from the beginning. I said they pay a new grad anywhere from 60-90k. And then the ones requiring a few years of experience go to 80-120k. My job pays 70-90k range straight out of school with no work experience in the last 5 years. Internal ones requiring a bit of experience go 80-110k. All of them are posted on the provincial government job sites. A ballpark salary for a new law grad should be 60-90k depending on the exact job, ministry, and specific government. Would I accept any job out of law school making less than 70k? Absolutely not and I didn’t. I know my worth. And of course you have benefits and other perks on top of this number but that’s the same for all government jobs that are salaried. My current job has very little stress compared to school but lots of boredom and routine, and way too much downtime. I don’t deal with clients per se, but when dealing with external people I have all the authority and independence to make any decision within the scope of the job duties. And I don’t have to worry about billable hours, what clients think, or anything like that. If my desk phone rings and I don’t feel like answering or talking to whoever it is I just never answer it. If someone leaves a message and I feel it’s not relevant to me directly, I delete it and don’t think twice about it. There are no cellphones to worry about or checking email outside the office. By 430 PM weekdays the whole floor is empty and Fridays is ghost town. The building is actually locked on weekends and I’ve never ever heard of anyone working on a weekend. About half of the office works from home and has many days or half days off using combinations of flex time and compressed work weeks. I’m not saying it’s like this everywhere but it is in most places. Also, the employees are way older on average so trust me when I tell you that they are taking it easy. I would call the work pace and attitude pre-retirement mode. Management is very nice and relaxed. Casual work attire is every day. And I don't mean business casual, I mean casual. The trick is to get in during a hiring blitz and also to apply broadly. All government jobs have weekends and evenings off, and that’s the normal. Only exception is if you’re working in a prosecution, litigation, law enforcement or other job with shifts or on call duties. Which most are not. If you have 1 year of work experience (I am assuming you are articled) then you would also be eligible for prosecutor and barrister and solicitor law positions, which I am not. All those pay 80k minimum to start (you can always ask for more within the range), but you might have slightly longer hours than in regular positions and some weekends. I see postings all the time though in AB and BC for regular and law jobs, most of which are in the 60-120k range I talked about. There are also many policy type jobs in the 60-90k range which give you valuable policy and project coordination experience. If a job says you need 2-4 years of experience in whatever you can still get away with 0 to 1 years depending on how much they are hiring and who you are competing against. Related education can also be used to cover the experience requirement which is where the JD comes in. If it asks for 4-5 years of experience you can still get an interview with 1-2 combined with education. Ideal job descriptions especially in terms of asset qualifications are just that, idealized. At the end of the day they hire someone for that position, so why not you? If you write a good cover letter and can explain how you meet the requirements (in whatever way you think makes sense) then you might get an interview and at the interview it’s all about the interview performance and your examples for the behavioral questions. Or simply if the manager likes you or not (fit). With internal or limited competitions it’s the same thing except now the initial hiring pool is down to only a handful of internal people from the get go. I feel like even with no more than 1 year of experience I can still apply to any job asking for 3 to 5 by combining my education, but these are not law positions. Having said that, I’ve gotten interviews around when I graduated even for positions requiring JDs (policy advisor type positions but not lawyer ones) at the manager classification level (80-110k) where other candidates were many senior seasoned lawyers. And the reason is because in my cover letter I explained how I met the minimum requirements using a combination of education and it’s HR that screens the applications for the interview shortlist. You can look at some of the postings at the links below but keep in mind that internal or limited competitions (which there are many and the easiest to get) will not show on the public side. https://www.hrextcg.alberta.ca/psc/HREXTCG_AC/EMPLOYEE/HRMS/c/HRS_HRAM.HRS_CE.GBL?Page=HRS_CE_HM_PRE&action=A&siteId=1 https://bcpublicservice.hua.hrsmart.com/hr/ats/JobSearch/search I will paste the following position as an example. This one I CANNOT apply to and cannot leverage the JD as an experience requirement. I assume such open jobs for law positions would have fierce external competition from older overworked lawyers in private practice. Job Description Job Title: Barrister and Solicitor Job ID: 1050554 Location: Edmonton Full/Part Time: Full-Time Regular/Temporary: Regular Scope Open competition Closing Date September 10, 2018 Classification Legal Counsel 1-4 Ministry Justice and Solicitor General About Us The Government of Alberta is committed to a diverse and inclusive public service that reflects the population we serve to best meet the needs of Albertans. Consider joining a team where diversity, inclusion and innovation are valued and supported. For more information on diversity and inclusion, please visit: https://www.alberta.ca/diversity-inclusion-policy.aspx One of Alberta Justice's core businesses is to provide Legal and Strategic services to government and this is done by the Legal Services Division. It includes providing legal advice, managing risks, conducting civil litigation, drafting legislation, regulations and orders-in-council, and retaining outside counsel. Legal Services is proud to be a learning organization and offers employees opportunities to learn and grow in their careers. To learn more about the Legal Services Division and what it has to offer, visit: https://justice.alberta.ca/programs_services/about_us/Pages/legal_services.aspx Competencies are the foundation for our talent management programs, including hiring decisions. We encourage you to find out more about the Alberta Public Service Competency Model by following the links below: http://psc.alberta.ca/learning/apscompetencies/aps-competency-model.pdf http://psc.alberta.ca/learning/apscompetencies/apscomp-self-assessment-questionnaire.pdf Role Legal Services Division is seeking self-motivated lawyers (Legal Officer 1-4) who are capable of taking on important responsibilities and handling significant matters. We have several positions with the Aboriginal Law Team and the Litigation team. Aboriginal Law Team Positions: The Aboriginal Law Team provides legal advice to a variety of client ministries, handles complex and large litigation files, drafts legal opinions and agreements and provides advice related to Crown consultation matters and regulatory matters that involve aboriginal law issues. The Aboriginal Law Team is seeking one lawyer (Legal Officer 1-3) who has an interest in litigation and advisory work and a second lawyer who has an interest in solicitors work (e.g. drafting general agreements, opinion work, funding/grant agreements, land transactions). You will have the opportunity to develop networks through effective communication of legal advice and consultation on issues related to Aboriginal Law while building relationships with client ministries. Your agility will allow you to thrive in a dynamic work environment and respond quickly to address highly complex, sensitive legal issues and client ministry needs. Your systems-thinking approach will be put to use as you analyze complex problems, initiatives, and issues with a strategic approach. Litigation Team Positions: The Legal Services Litigation Team is looking for three litigation lawyers (Legal Officer 2-4) to join their team. As a lawyer on the Litigation Team, you will work as a team and play a supporting and leading role in conducting a wide variety of civil litigation matters including: class actions, judicial reviews, civil forfeiture, charter litigation, commercial and personal injury litigation and other litigation matters. The position offers interesting and challenging work, including responsibility for the following: -Drafting opinions and briefs -Developing and implementing strategies and plans for conducting complex litigation -Frequent appearances in regular and special chambers -Conducting trials and appeals To succeed in this role you will need strong analytical skills, superior oral and written advocacy and exceptional communication skills. You must also enjoy working as part of a team and possess strong client relations skills. Qualifications A Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) or Juris Doctor (JD). The candidate must be an active member or must have immediate eligibility for full membership with the Law Society of Alberta. Assets for the Aboriginal Law Team positions: Experience with any of the following areas are considered assets: aboriginal law, administrative law, environmental law or constitutional law and litigation matters and/or solicitor work. Requirements for the Litigation Team positions: A minimum of 4 years of civil litigation experience is required. Salary Classification and salary will be determined based on candidate's qualifications and experience. Legal Officer 1: $3,055.53 - $3,936.73 bi-weekly Legal Officer 2: $4,391.03 - $5,600.88 bi-weekly Legal Officer 3: $5,535.55 - $6,467.12 bi-weekly Legal Officer 4: $6,337.96 - $6,970.31 bi-weekly Notes A cover letter is required. Please clearly state in your cover letter and resume how your experience meets the requirements of this position. In your resume, please include dates (including months and years) associated with all education and work experience. Also, please indicate whether your work experience is casual, part time or full time. Please clearly state on your cover letter which position you are interested in applying for (Aboriginal Law Team or the Litigation Team). This competition may be used to fill future permanent and temporary vacancies. Candidates with lower qualifications may be considered at a lower classification and salary. Final candidates for this competition will be asked to undergo a Security Screening. How to Apply Online applications are preferred. If you are unable to submit an electronic version of your resume, please submit your resume, quoting the Job ID, to: Mercedez Lynchuk, Justice and Solicitor General, 10365-97 Street, Edmonton, AB, T5J 3W7. Fax: (780) 644-1395. Phone: 780-644-7486. Applicants who apply online will be able to track the status of their application. Applicants are advised to provide information that clearly and concisely demonstrates how their qualifications meet the advertised requirements, including education and experience. Note: As only one file can be uploaded, please ensure your cover letter, resume and any other related documents are submitted in one file. Please ensure that this document is saved using the naming convention of your last then first name followed by the seven digit Job Opening ID number (Smith,Joe_XXXXXXX). It is recommended that applicants who have obtained educational credentials from outside of Canada and have not had them previously assessed, obtain an evaluation of their credentials from the International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) - http://work.alberta.ca/immigration/international-qualifications-assessment-service.html It is recommended that applicants include the assessment certificate from IQAS or any other educational assessment service as part of their application. Closing Statement We thank all applicants for their interest. All applications will be reviewed. Only the most suitable candidate(s) will be selected from this competition. And here is a non-law job example that you could get right out of school with a JD. If it was temporary it makes it even easier to get and once you have it you are eligible to apply to internal permanent competitions government wide. Or it might become permanent within the year (happens often due to turnover) if you don't feel like switching jobs. Some are temporary and some are permanent, but most become permanent either way. Job Description Job Title: Policy Analyst and Business Analyst Job ID: 1050665 Location: Edmonton Full/Part Time: Full-Time Regular/Temporary: Regular Scope Open competition Closing Date September 4, 2018 Classification Program Services 3 Ministry Health About Us The Government of Alberta is committed to a diverse and inclusive public service that reflects the population we serve to best meet the needs of Albertans. Consider joining a team where diversity, inclusion and innovation are valued and supported. For more information on diversity and inclusion, please visit: https://www.alberta.ca/diversity-inclusion-policy.aspx Insured Services Unit The Insured Services Unit provides strategic leadership for the fee for service compensation models for physician and allied health providers under the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan, including the content development and interpretation of the Schedule of Medical Benefits (SOMB), allied Schedules of Benefits (optometry, podiatry, podiatric surgery and oral maxillofacial surgery) and insured services in Alberta. Alternative Compensation Delivery Unit (ACDU) The ACDU supports and implements overarching government directions for innovation in service delivery in the province through the primary care initiative, new models of physician compensation, and the structure and evolution of Alternative Relationship Plans (ARPs). The ACDU is responsible for ensuring that the policy directions and initiatives implemented are consistent and complimentary across the province to ensure a maximum and fiscally sustainable contribution to the Health System strategic direction. To learn more about Alberta Health and what we have to offer, follow this link: http://www.health.alberta.ca/ Role Do you want to be part of a team that plays a key role in shaping the transformation of our healthcare system? Do you have strong research and problem solving skills? If this is you, then this exciting role with the Provider Compensation and Strategic Partnerships Branch may be the opportunity you have been waiting for! Business Analyst - Insured Services Reporting directly to the Manager of the Insured Services Delivery team, you will develop approaches to manage and organize key deliverables and projects undertaken by the unit and provide analytical, technical and consultative services to management and staff within the unit. The Business Analyst is also responsible for developing and leading processes that lead business innovation and efficiencies; integrating data and business requirements into standard processes; examining complex processes to identify opportunities for simplification and/or standardization; writing business cases to rationalize the value and impacts of selected initiatives; managing initiatives and assessing the impact on existing policies and processes. Policy Analyst - Alternative Compensation Delivery Unit (ACDU) Reporting to the Manager of Academic Medicine, the Policy Analyst will support the development and implementation of provincial level strategic and policy direction for various physician compensation models. You will support the development and implementation of an efficient Alternative Relationship Plan (ARP) process as it relates to stakeholders via policy analysis, strategic planning, statistical analysis, project planning, evaluation and recommendation. The incumbent will have strong written communication skills to provide policy advice and briefing notes relevant to ARPs as requested by senior officials (Minister, Deputy Minister, Executive Director, and Director). Qualifications University graduation in a related field (Commerce, Public Health, Healthcare Administration, Economics or other related disciplines) plus 2 years progressively responsible related experience is required. Equivalencies will be considered. Experience in research and analysis is preferred. Possessing experience with project management is desirable. Experience working with technical software such as Microsoft Office Suite (Excel, Access, etc.) and Visio would be a desirable asset. Equivalencies will be considered on the basis of: -1 year of experience for 1 year of education -1 year of education for 1 year of experience Competencies Competencies are behaviors that are essential to reach our goals in serving Albertans. We encourage you to have an in depth understanding of the competencies that are required for this opportunity and to be prepared to demonstrate them during the recruitment process. The link below will assist you with understanding competencies: : http://www.psc.alberta.ca/Practitioners/?file=learning/apscompetencies/titlepage&cf=9 As an ideal candidate, you will demonstrate the following APS competencies: Agility: Ability to anticipate, assess, and readily adapt to changing priorities, maintain resilience in times of uncertainty and effectively work in a changing environment. Building Collaborative Environments: Builds on the skills and knowledge of others to create results. Creative Problem Solving: Being proactive and taking ownership for identifying solutions within your work. Systems thinking: Seeks insight about the implications of different options from both a people and organizational perspective. Salary $2,588.03 to $3,394.66 bi-weekly ($67,547 to $88,702 per annum) Notes As part of the interview process, shortlisted candidates will be required to complete a written test. This competition may be used to fill a number of current and future vacancies in various ministries throughout the Government of Alberta. What we offer: -Comprehensive benefits plan (MyChoice): http://www.psc.alberta.ca/Employees/DocList122.cfm -Comprehensive benefits plan (1stChoice): http://www.psc.alberta.ca/Employees/DocList134.cfm -Pension plan: http://www.mepp.ca/ How to Apply All applicants MUST submit a cover letter. Applications received without a cover letter will not be considered. Please indicate in cover letter the position of interest. Online applications are preferred. Applicants who apply online will be able to track the status of the competition. Note: As only one file can be uploaded, please ensure your cover letter, resume and any other related documents are submitted in one file. Please ensure that this document is saved using the naming convention of your last then first name followed by the seven digit Job Opening ID number (Smith,Joe_XXXXXXX). Applicants being considered may be contacted via e-mail with information about the next stage in the process. It is recommended that applicants who have obtained educational credentials from outside of Canada and have not had them previously assessed, obtain an evaluation of their credentials from the International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) - http://work.alberta.ca/immigration/international-qualifications-assessment-service.html It is recommended that applicants include the assessment certificate from IQAS or any other educational assessment service as part of their application. Position Profile Please see the attached position description for a detailed list of the job responsibilities: https://www.alberta.ca/jobs/pprofile/pp1050665.htm Closing Statement If you require any further information on this job posting, please call our Human Resource office at: (780) 427-1524. We thank all applicants for their interest. All applications will be reviewed to determine which candidates' education and experience best meets the needs of the position. Only individuals selected for interviews will be contacted. Please follow us on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/company/government-of-alberta
  3. 3: Examination-Based Licensing makes the most sense and is the examination based standard in places like New York and the US generally. Why don't we have this already? Because of protectionism in Canada and monopolies by some power hungry partners. 4: LPP for all Candidates, this might be a transitional bridge between the current broken system and the US exam standard. If law school isn't teaching you what you need to know then 3 years is a waste of money when they could have had the same useless courses in 1 or 2. But we already knew it's mostly a waste of time and money, especially in Ontario. As for minimum wage...I was under the impression that they do have to pay at least the minimum wage equivalent but perhaps it depends on the province. There is no articling crisis. The whole articling system is a rigged game and purely a protectionist measure from back in the day when you couldn't enter a trade unless you got a wink and nod from some senior dinosaur partner. What a coincidence that the majority of the articling spots go to handpicked summer students who have demonstrated a prior connection to the firms. Also what's the point of articling if all you want to do is work internally for government in a policy position. It has nothing to do with protecting the public, just protecting the firms' interests and maintaining tight control of the hiring market. It also creates an artificial overabundance of desperate students willing to accept any position as if it was ambrosia nectar dripping down from the hollierthanthou partner's tit. Because one day you too could become such a law Deity (minor god).
  4. My post is aimed in terms of people who couldn’t find a suitable articling position but decided to look for a government job instead without ever articling and not planning to ever practice. Yes, the government hires a lot of law school graduates and many are not in lawyer positions! Basically, a JD can get you into a government interview for various jobs requiring about 2-4 years of experience, almost by itself. Then whether or not you get hired depends on your interview performance and how many positions there are. You should always apply if it looks interesting even if you don’t meet the “ideal” experience requirements. The reason is because a JD is a unique advanced degree that few people have yet is applicable to almost all government jobs. Some of these jobs might even prefer a law degree, or very rarely even require it specifically, but none are law positions. Pay range is anywhere from 60-110k depending on the exact job or location. An Advisor/Analyst type job might pay 60-70k in BC, but a very similar job with similar requirement might pay 80-110k in Alberta. Some provincial governments generally pay much better than Federal, and hiring only takes a few months at most. Then once you get hired even if it’s not a permanent position, there are many, many even better internal competitions that you can apply to after only a few months, and these tend to be more specialized, higher paying, but also have far fewer contenders. Internal competitions can be open to all government employees, or just to a specific ministry. The ministry specific ones are the easiest to get since the pool of eligible applicants becomes very small and generally they’re not that well educated if they feed from line areas. Your education is a factor and so is your experience. Whether or not you articled is irrelevant for internal competitions unless you’re applying for a counsel position requiring law society membership (ironically even some internal competitions clearly intended for more senior lawyers do not actually require articling since they are higher level advisor/analyst policy positions except at a lawyer salary). Government regular working hours are about 7h a day at most and no weekends or evenings. Sometimes for newer people they are far less than 7h a day (many early days going home or just in the office with not much actual work to do) because due to training there is a lot of downtime until someone is fully trained which can take up to half a year depending on the position. There are also juicy benefits and a fat pension for those that stick it through the day-to-day tedium. I don’t have to ask any of the former lawyer hires why they took this job and abandoned the law profession altogether because I already know the answer. I mean, who wouldn’t? Lawyer positions in government on the other hand would make slightly more but deal with way more stress and longer hours. And I don’t think prosecutors for example can ever work 4, 8 h days a week from home and nothing else. Most government workers (depending on the type of job and work area) after 1 year of working can get perks such as working from home combined with flexible work schedules or compressed work weeks where you can work just 4 days a week for example and all from home with hours equivalent to 7-5, no evenings, no weekends. Imagine getting up around 7 and stepping into your office in the next room, then clocking out at around 5, and always having Fridays and weekends off every week. All the while making around 80-90k with a few years of seniority. Once again, who in their right mind would give that up to join a firm just to be called a “student-at-law” for half the salary and double the hours. And if you don’t like your job you can quite easily switch to a completely different one within a few months, internally, as there are many diverse internal opportunities all the time (limited competitions to which external applicants cannot apply). As for interview questions, I tell them flat out that I couldn’t find an articling position because there are way too many law students interviewing for like 1 firm spot, and that I always intended for a government career. That’s what I said when I got this current job. I simply never intended to practice or be a lawyer. And just having recently graduated everyone understood I was looking for a job…just like every other person who applied for the posting. In fact, as a recent grad I would get fewer questions than someone switching jobs or late into their career. At my next interview I might get asked why I want to leave my current job, but I already have an answer to that as well so no big deal. People move around all the time in government internally and quickly. As for junior versus senior, everyone does the same work for a given working title and is treated equally. The only difference is that the senior people have more experience and tend to move into specialized units or supervisory positions if they so wish. And by senior I mean only a few years of experience in the case of some supervisors. Others just enjoy the easy routine jobs and plenty of vacation and flex time off. Getting licenced means missing out on whatever great job they are hiring right now and by the time you get licenced maybe there will be a hiring freeze like in Ontario. And in that 1 year you could have moved into an even better internal position before said hiring freeze. Because hiring in some desirable areas happens in bursts and very rarely such as during expansions or the creation of new units. If you know what you want to do then why not go straight for it from the beginning. If you don’t, then sure allow yourself to get pulled in by whatever law firm tentacles pull you into whatever soul sucking dark abyss. The real reason I didn’t get licenced is because I want good pay for regular hours and good benefits for meaningful work, but don’t want to have to worry about keeping track of hours or dealing with any clients. And also there weren’t really any decent articling positions that came up, but who cares. Only articling students or lawyers look down on not articling. Everyone else does not care. Just to be clear, some coworkers who are less educated assume I was a lawyer just because I went to law school but I explain to them that I did not article and so was never a lawyer and cannot give actual legal advice. That’s just about educating them when they ask the next question of “so are you writing, or when are you writing the bar exam?” or “are you looking to be a lawyer for a private firm in the future?”. As for policy jobs, it’s true that there are lots of internal policy related positions. There are even specific legal issues units for various division and branches where there are no lawyers (just advisors or analysts with various working tittles) although they might at times work with Justice counsel lawyers on certain matters. This happens all the time in regulatory and enforcement environments. There are also ex lawyers either active bar members or not in various positions such as policy specialists, legislative advisors, appeal officers, regular enforcement officers (human rights and other legislated areas), etc. Some of the policy units which generally do not have people that went to law school give advice whether technical or operational all the time on legislation issues, interpretation issues, case law precedents, and written opinions on procedures and policies, etc. But generally none of the analysts/advisors are lawyer positions and generally have no law background or education. These higher level policy positions do work with senior management and line management/supervisors when providing advice and legislation interpretation opinions in terms of policies and procedures for legislation enforcement, investigations, and procedural matters. And sometimes they say that in some very limited instances they will seek a “legal opinion” from legal services, but it almost never happens. What’s in this post is how it is at the provincial level and that’s just how things are in most government worksites. So yes, a law degree will help you first get a government job, and then move up from there internally, literally in a matter of months if you want. And my questions is, if within 1 year from grad you’re already making 80k or more (the same as a junior lawyer, or more by the way), plus benefits, plus pension, why would you want to quit later to article for half of that (and lose all the benefits and pension)? You also have to pay membership fees if you have a law society membership even if not practicing, but also if you’re inactive for years it’s very difficult to all of a sudden apply to jobs requiring an active licence and recent experience in whatever area of law they are looking for. Practically it’s just as if you never articled yet paid the fees the whole time. Government will absolutely not pay a cent for your licence fees or anything else unless it’s an actual professional job requirement that directly relates to your position.
  5. I get what you mean but this isn't involving the public or management so it's not an issue practically speaking. There's a pretty big gap sometimes between what senior management says to do and what actually gets done (or what even makes sense). Also this isn't federal so things are a lot more flexible and informal at the operations level. There're former lawyers at work who are not active in the law society in non law roles who give their opinion and discuss various specific legal issues informally (or even formally as written directives if in policy) all the time. Licensing is meant to protect the public, but again none of this involves discussions with the public. It's just between coworkers. There is no liability at all that I can think of that would come up. Coworkers discuss various topics all the time as peers regardless of their education. There is no expectation of entering into any sort of legal professional relationship. Everyone knows what everyone else's job titles are and what experience they have. More than a few went to law school but none of them are in law positions. Literally some coworkers go up to other coworkers and say, "you were a lawyer, based on your legal knowhow, what do you think would happen in this specific situation...or what does this section of law mean in this particular case..." Again all informal discussions involving coworkers. Management is never involved. It's very specific about specific application of legislation to specific cases or situations. Coworkers definitely ask each other for advice on how to proceed, or additional information, but no one is dense enough to think it's actual "legal advice". Instead of "legal advice", let's just call it educational discussions about internal policies and procedures, and how they impact operations; all of which is directly related to legislation interpretation and enforcement. There are also group file discussions where many people offer their opinions. Policy units do give more formal written opinions and directives on some of these procedural or interpretation things all the time, and it sounds exactly like legal opinions but none of them are lawyers. Is any of it "legal advice"? Practically speaking no, because formal legal advice everyone knows only comes from Justice lawyers and it first goes to senior management. Anything else outside of that context no one cares about what you call it in the operations areas, and especially in the front lines. When dealing directly with anyone in the public generally specific procedures and policies are followed of course being careful not to say anything that would suggest or seem like a preference or advice on any course of action. That's where the liability comes in, when dealing with the crazy public. Luckily just stick to your job description and role when it comes to the public and statutory immunity prevents any lawsuits. Trying to be overly helpful with "randos" beyound the bare minimum required is definitely a trap.
  6. There are some pretty misguided ideas people have out there but this has to be the worst I have ever heard of. Nursing to law might make sense, but dentist to law school makes zero sense. If you got 100k and time, just take 30k and travel the world for 3-4 months, and take the other 70k and put it in various quality promising ICOs and crypto blockchain projects. You'll be a lot wealthier in 3-4 years and also a heck of a lot happier too. I predict leaving you existing career and going to law school out of boredom will just lead to financial misery, depression, anxiety, and several wasted years that you will never get back. What a waste. Whatever your current problems are (boredom, mid life crisis, too much money, too much time, etc), going to law school is NEVER the wise decision.
  7. They know you have to article and can only do so in certain law society approved positions so they are taking advantage of you. It’s pretty simple actually and happens all the time. Slave labour and not subject to minimum wage protections. Trust the law profession (society) to look out for you and have minimum pay standards…NOT. I won’t even ask about the benefits they are not giving you. You also messed up during the negotiation part of the interview regarding salary but on the plus side you were able to secure a position since you were seen as a “value deal”. You’ll have to finish your training now. And then you can find a better job and quit later. Time will probably go by fast anyway. No one said you have to stay there after training is over. Start networking and looking for other future positions now!!!!!!!!!!! The best is yet to come! Research stuff and talk to people. Some people have switched articling half way through successfully but that was due to bad work environments and jerk bosses. And during very good market conditions. Harder or impossible to do that in your situation. On a side note, this is why I like government positions. I already know the exact pay or at least the specific range before even applying. And the benefits are always good and included. Best advice is to suck it up for now, say nothing but finish your training, and then jump ship at the first opportunity after training is done for something more in line with your goals. Meanwhile network and work hard at securing the next opportunity with someone else who values you more and aligns better with your longer term plans. I’m basically doing the same thing now and pay is also an issue for me, but then I’m already making more than all my classmates who are articling (I’m not articling). But less than all my coworkers. So it’s all relative. However, personally I wouldn’t accept any position below 50k a year. Always thinking about the next move up, but a top performer and contributor while in my current role. Be a top dawg wherever you are and soon something better will come opportunity wise. Never Give Up!
  8. That is also something a lawyer would say and incorrect. Of course that person would talk about that in CPD; it's self-serving and what everyone in the room wants to hear. Fake news. The reality is that if you work in a good department or agency that is large enough there will be many, many opportunities for movement and advancement quite literally every few years or sooner, so in short time periods. And none of them will ever be lawyer positions because there are no lawyers positions outside of specific counsel or Justice counsel roles. The pay is the same by the way but the work more varied and interesting in non law roles. Although federally the pay is actually higher sooner in non law roles over time (with the exception of prosecutors). In 30 years (or sooner) when you retire from such a government job you will get a fat juicy pension at which point you can just retire and not work, or take on a term position at an executive level in the private sector or municipality. Or even be a consultant or special advisor due to your expertise and experience. Some coworkers are lawyers and they have zero intention of going back to practice; there's reasons why they left in the first place. And yeah people who went to law school or were lawyers talk about law topics and give internal advice all the time when people ask them questions or want more info about a legal topic. But it's all informal and it's more akin to information or education. Although sometimes it's just discussions of interpretation or opinion. And almost always orally. It is not actual legal advice though, just discussions about interpretation of issues. And it does not involve management. Officially everyone knows it's Justice lawyers who provide actual legal advice or do anything legal but that only happens at the higher executive management levels far removed from anything front line operations employees do or talk about. Also any job in government is very specific in terms of what your role is and the same goes for responsibilities, policies and procedures. The rest is just people talking about whatever internally, and not "legal advice". Not like the public or law society would ever know anyway what government employees talk about outside of official memos (which are only at the higher management levels). But yeah a legal education is always respected and coworkers will always ask you questions about different specific topics law related (going to law school is enough). And it’s usually issues of interpretation regarding a topic or where to find more information on a specific topic. No one thinks of it as legal advice though. And management is not involved in the discussions. In fact I don't even know what legal advice means. Only Justice or official legal services people give “legal advice” and that goes to senior managers in written form, which then eventually results in changes in procedures and policies down to the front line operations people. The front line people just follow the policies and procedures as best as possible. And front line operations people discuss a lot of things between themselves, including how inept or impractical management is. The stuff coming from policy units which sounds like advice on legislation interpretation is almost never from lawyers anyway. In fact some of the stuff actual lawyers write to higher ups is mostly crap and far removed from anything that makes any common sense operationally or practically. Real optionality is not being stuck and typecast in a law position with no room to move laterally or otherwise. Think small firm family lawyer. Or large firm specialized associate. Not to mention paying yearly law society dues on an inactive membership year after year.
  9. I can’t tell whether some of you are being sarcastic when saying that the U of T tuition of 36k is worth it, or just delusional. I’d like to see this Napoleonic complex after someone doesn’t land BayStreet and ends up in some small firm in the Toronto suburbs (and then not even being kept on after articles). I know of at least one U of T grad who had this fate (to be fair her parents paid the tuition). And plenty from Osgoode probably. If some of you actually believe the whole ivy league law school myth then I have to say kudos to the marketing and branding departments at U of T and Osgoode. The institutional greed knows no bounds. Any large school that’s been around for a while has alumni all over the place in many “important” positions. But only one charges 36k a year for the “privilege”. I know I decided not to practice or article because hated both law firms and in general didn’t want to work all the time with annoying lawyers (classmates). I also now have the freedom of doing whatever I want, wherever. Long story short, it will take just under 1 year to pay off all my student loans at my current job, or 1-2 years if I switch jobs to something that I like more but pays less. If that tuition was 2x or 3x as much (like Osgoode or U of T) I don’t know what I would have done now. Financially I would be hooped US college style. Just to be clear, if you’re paying more than 20k in tuition a year you’re definitely getting ripped off. I don’t know how bursaries work but I know some people don’t get any or get very minimal amounts. Paying Toronto rental and real estate prices is another plus I suppose for some. Go to UBC out in Western Canada. My favourite school. Not only is it much cheaper but the location is 1000x better, right by the ocean with a year-long mild climate. On a side note, TRU charges close to Osgoode prices, and pretty soon people will start saying that based on tuition TRU must also be ivy league or superior somehow to other schools. Yet TRU is in high demand too regardless of how much they charge. J.
  10. No, that's incorrect and something only a lawyer would say. 99% of regular folk don't even know that articling exists and what it is. To them you're a lawyer if you work as a lawyer and you're not a lawyer if you don't. Simple as that. Hence articling only has a use later on if you intend to work as a lawyer in a position that requires that licence (including in house or corporate counsel). The things that will get considered with internal government promotions is direct experience, references and evaluations in terms of your supervisor, assessments or tests that are internal, and educational credentials. Being called to the bar in the past is irrelevant unless you're suddenly applying to a counsel position. And articling years later would mean going from 80-100k a year to 30-50k and then starting out at the bottom again. Unless of course you're talking about stuff completely outside government which it sounds like you are. Let's say you work as a CBSA Officer. This is probably not the best example but it's not that far off from most government positions. Assignment to a specialized unit or to a supervisory position is based on internal experience competencies and internal assessments via internal competitions. You will never ever be competing against someone who has articled and most people barely have a bachelors if even that. Part of that competition will be what education you have such as a JD. But whether or not you were called to the bar no one will care because it is irrelevant to the position. Most people working there won't even know what articling or called to the bar means, but they will understand "graduated from law school". And the JD degree name even sounds impressive now that they changed it from a bachelors. Remember, you are not dealing with any lawyers or law students during hiring or as coworkers as these are not law positions. It's a refreshing change after law school ends.
  11. Just saw the memo about the Ontario Public Service hiring restraint. That’s too bad since it’s the largest provincial public service, but even so they are still hiring essential positions and anything public safety related. If you’re reading those government job advertisement requirements literally, you’re doing it wrong. Take the one below as an example: https://www.canada.ca/en/security-intelligence-service/corporate/csis-jobs/available-jobs/intelligence-officer.html "Applicants must clearly demonstrate in their cover letter how their experience meets the competencies listed. Experience can include but is not limited to work experience, student placements, paid or unpaid internship, life experience and/or travel experience." If you read the required Competencies carefully you’ll notice they are completely generic and all of them apply to school. Furthermore, some government positions are so specialized that even though they claim certain Experience requirements, no one would realistically have those unless they are already working there internally, so those are more so like idealized descriptions. Yet they still fill such positions with external candidates who don’t really have that specific “experience”. If it says you need 2-3 years of experience in X area that is even remotely related to a law degree, your JD will more than likely suffice as a 1:1 year of education to experience equivalent. You’ll still get an interview with 0 experience but with an advanced degree for positions that claim they need a few years of experience. And you might still get an interview regardless because lots of people apply with “experience” but very few with a law degree. And the same applies to so called “manager” positions which are sometimes just position classifications but not any higher real requirements. Then at the interview it all depends how the people like you and what the other competition is like, and also how much they happen to be hiring at the time. Or simply how arbitrarily you get scored on the competencies (if you're unlucky enough to have HR people doing the interview). And a law degree can apply to almost anything in government and be deemed as relevant experience equivalency. Then there are some agencies which are hiring in large numbers all the time where just applying gets you in the process to the interview and beyound. Having just a JD people will be impressed and understand given the job market and economy. But if you were already a practicing lawyer you’ll get questions about why you want to all of a sudden abandon your practice and people will view it negatively (especially other lawyers). That’s why I think it’s important to have a clear career plan (either as a lawyer or non-lawyer) from the beginning before articling and stick to it. As for articling or practice experience, I’ve already said that in government it gives absolutely no career advantage for non-lawyer positions. Once you enter a public service career track advancement is through internal assessments and internal experience only. No one will care whether or not you were called to the bar before or practiced prior to being hired; but the JD will tick off the educational box almost no one else will have in internal competitions. And just to clarify, I wasn’t talking about government policy jobs, and I agree those are hard to get without direct experience. But most government jobs are in operations and service delivery, not policy. Being a called lawyer or articling is only useful if you intend to later flip flop to different positions outside government. It only takes a few years (or less) to move into a supervisory role or into a specialized role with a law degree in whatever government agency you stick with.
  12. Government. The discussion is in the "Deciding not to article?" thread.
  13. OP can browse the GC Jobs website to see what’s out there. It all depends on individual interests and timing. https://psjobs-emploisfp.psc-cfp.gc.ca/psrs-srfp/applicant/page2440?fromMenu=true And there are also provincial government specific job websites such as BC, Ontario, etc, where postings are updated daily. https://bcpublicservice.hua.hrsmart.com/hr/ats/JobSearch/viewAll https://www.gojobs.gov.on.ca/Search.aspx The only caution is that you’d need to apply broadly, and also apply many months in advance since government hiring can take a long time. My point was that it’s not articling or nothing. I would argue that non-law positions provide far more career options both in the short-term and the long-term.
  14. Government policy jobs are very difficult to get without policy experience. You'll be screened out without the relevant policy experience. Some of the requirements, either experience or education, can be very specific and strict. It's a vicious cycle. They're also quite boring as far as the actual work goes. And projects tend to either go on in perpetuity or get cancelled abruptly. If you want the satisfaction of seeing something get done to conclusion from start to finish, government policy is probably not the area to be working in.
  15. I just made an account to chime in on this particular thread. I can totally relate to the OP. Except I now know I don't want to article in the first place. For non-practicing positions I don't see any advantage to it whatsoever; short of aiming for a long-term goal of being a partner, academic, or justice. It is absolutely not a waste to go to law school and not article afterwards. I got a job offer in government 1 day before I graduated. It's not articling but it pays between $70-90k a year, depending on how much you ask for at the interview. Most of the government jobs I looked at which which are hiring all the time have similar pay ranges. Most are entry level, and none require articling since they're not lawyer positions. My work experience (summer or otherwise) in the last 5 years is exactly 0. I traveled or took classes during summers and during undergrad, and had no part-time job. I only got this government job specifically because of the law degree, and yes they were impressed at the interview when I talked about law school stuff. I could have asked for 80k from that start, and they would have agreed given the range, but I didn't. No need to be greedy with no recent work experience. Meanwhile some of my classmates are going to be making under 40k or around 40k articling (and forget about good benefts or other perks), and not a whole lot more in the year afterwards. Please get out of the law bubble and get some fresh air. The JD is an asset and a privilege, not a trap. There is a whole world out there open to you. The non-law world is your oyster. J.
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