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    • I'm a "big law" real estate lawyer who also does a fair amount of corporate work. My responses as they relate to how things are at my firm: 1. Associates basically get billed out and paid the same as others in their year of call, regardless of practice group. Bonuses mostly depend on how many hours you work. I've noticed that our M&A partners get billed out at higher rates than our real estate partners, although our real estate partners probably earn just as much on average as the M&A partners. The top few in both groups are earning 7-figures in roughly the same range. I note that I'm in Vancouver, and real estate is one of the largest drivers of the economy, so I would think there might be more discrepancy between M&A and real estate lawyers in Toronto (real estate being a secondary group to a certain extent). 2. Overall hours probably end up being roughly the same, but real estate is definitely more predictable. That's one of the reasons I transitioned I away from M&A to real estate. In M&A closings, there's usually one massive push towards the closing date where everything is being drafted/signed. Real estate deals typically have one small push where the Purchase and Sale Agreement is being negotiated, then a 30 day due diligence period before conditions are waived, and then 30 days following condition waiver where closing documents are drafted and the actual closing takes place, so there's more little "hills" in a real estate deal whereas there's usually one big "mountain" in most M&A deals. Plus I find M&A deals tend to get dropped on you more unpredictably than in real estate. I find real estate is more complex legally than corporate though. It feels quite similar to corporate work, but with an added layer of archaic laws relating to land, one of the oldest assets of all, plus a land title registration system and all the nuances that come with that. I also find real estate law has more of a tangible effect on deals than corporate law, whereby the clients appreciate what you do to a greater extent. I've heard several real estate clients say a good real estate lawyer is worth their weight in gold and they would be open to partnering on deals and splitting equity, whereas I found corporate clients were rarely that enthusiastic, and a lot of them didn't grasp the nuances of how the legal side would affect their deal because they too often perceive the lawyers as just being there to "paper the deal". 3. Networking/client development is about the same. You have to go out and get deals somehow (although, once you have a reputation for good work and a critical mass of clients/peers, you'll get more deals through referrals than you will by schmoozing). At my firm, I would say the real estate group definitely schmoozes more than the M&A group on average, but again, that might be Vancouver-specific, where real estate developments, acquisitions, and leasing are huge components of the economy. I've heard from real estate friends in Toronto that they're more like service lawyers in the sense that they do a lot of support work on deals coming from their firm's corporate/M&A groups.
    • I'm trying to calculate a NPV for the cost of going to UBC Law and UofT.   I've gotten the salary information from ZSA for Large, Medium, Small firms in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto. As well as big law firms in New York. The Tuition and cost from both school's respective websites.   The only thing I need to complete my calculation is some sort of formulation of odds of landing each respective position. From what I have seen, it seems that law schools are fairly regional and folks tend to work near the schools which they earned their law degree. I am wondering if that's just because people believe this and tend to go to school where they want to practice, or are law firms hesitant to hire folks from out of province? Would an Albertan be a more viable candidate in Toronto if they received a degree from UofT, for example? Hopefully some folks can elaborate because that would play a big role in the relative values of the two schools. I'm sure all you perspective Law School students will be happy to know that both schools are currently showing a positive NPV. And that's with the assumption that you could make 100K in Salary in lieu of attending law school. So it seems that you can't really go wrong!  
    • No. Just my guess from having attended the welcome day, I think that they have sent out 150 offers (aka the number of spots in their entering class) and the next wave of acceptance will be the spots that people have declined. 
    • Hi everybody I have a couple of questions regarding biglaw areas of practice, specifically real estate and m&a: 1) I know all associates are on the same pay grid/progression but are there substantial average difference in the respective areas of practice? I just can't see real estate lawyers bringing in as much business/providing as much billing as m&a lawyers. Is this the case? (and yes I understand that money isn't everything and it varies from individual to individual but i'm asking about averages). 2) are the hours much different? everyone talks about the crazy hours in m&a, especially during closings. Is this true for real estate? or is real estate a bit more chill? 3) is the networking/client development really that different? I've heard that in m&a networking plays a larger role than in real estate and that m&a lawyers do things with clients such as go to raptors games or bars more than real estate lawyers do. thank you for insight!
    • I'm a 1L at Queen's and a woman of colour, and I haven't noticed any discrimination or racism at all. Queen's Law community is very friendly and my closest group has a mix of every background. I honestly feel like Kingston has some of the friendliest people I have ever met. Just my experience. 

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