Tuesday, June 1, 2010

SubprimeJD got a part time legal job

Giving everyone a personal update.

I have been practicing law for the last 2 weeks on a part time basis. Am working on a contract basis for $25 per hour. My hours range from 28-35 hours per week. Any cases I bring in are split 50/50 with my boss.

The work is great. So far I have drafted several complaints, answers, motions to dismiss, demurrers, propounded and responded to discoveries. Basically law and motion. I will also be assisting in trials as second chair and will be preparing trial briefs. I have also defended depositions and will be participating in a mediation very soon.

In reality I couldnt survive on my own on this type of wage. 35 hours per week = $875 per week, excluding taxes. As a 1099 employee i will be paying hefty taxes but as i will be starting my own legal corp ill get to write off as much as i can. In addition, my student loan payment of $845 per month is killer. Im still on a 10yr plan as i plan to pay it off within 6-8 years and dont want to go on the 25 yr plan. Here is the moral of the story for all you prospective tier 3, tier 4 law students: DO NOT ATTEND LAW SCHOOL IF YOU HAVE TO FULLY FINANCE IT OR IF YOUR FAMILY DOESNT HAVE THE MEANS TO SUPPORT YOU FOR THE FIRST FEW YEARS. I would be dead broke but for my parents assistance. I still live at home at the age of 27 and wont be moving out at least for another 12-18 months. When the cases that I have brought on 50/50 settle my situation will begin to improve dramatically but consider the assistance that I have:

(1) car and insurance paid for by parents
(2) living rent free
(3) parents paying the student loan
(4) receive an additional $500 per week in cash from the family estate (food, gas, entertainment)
(5) Misc. assistance (mom buys me suits, ties, pays for dry cleaning)

All of the above and i still live at home. Take away the listed subsidies and here is what im looking at on my current hours and wage:
(1) $500 per month
(2) $750 per month (assuming roomate)
(3) $845 per month
(4) no assistance, would have to depend on 1099 ($300 per month)
(5) lets put this at $250 per month
The grand total of the "family subsidy" comes out to $2,645 per month.
In addition to my $3496 before taxes 1099 i recieve an addition $2,645 from the fam.
Without my family's help i would be at this level:
$2622 after taxes. Rent, car, student loan ($2095) would leave me with $527 per month. After food, gas, clothing, cleaning, misc, i would be left with 0 additional monies left over. Mind you im married and my wife works as well and she brings home $2200 per month. Shes on $13 per hr working fulltime with some overtime while im on $25 working part time, sometimes near full time. She gets benefits, my parents pay my insurance.

This is the life of a 2009 tier 4 grad in California. Granted I am gratefull and very LUCKY to even have a shot at practicing real legal work in this environment. A tier 4 grad with average grades being given the chance to draft motions and attend trials is VERY RARE in California today. I wish the hours would be more than they are but that can change. I see the experience as being golden. Nevertheless, Im broke and would be in a even worse situation but for my parents help. With the current money i am making i am permitted to save some money for the future and will have the damn student loan paid off within the decade. Also, with my parents help i will be able to start my own practice after several years of paid training.

The question i ask those who are thinking of attending law school is: do you have this type of support to get you by for the first several years? Because if you dont your situation will be fucking nasty for a long long time.

7 comments:

  1. Congratulations on the new job, Subprime!

    Those loans are a frakking killer! I'm shelling out over $2K every month...and I'm only keeping up because I am doing sales, which is more lucrative than the law right now, as you well know.

    Keep on slogging away!

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  2. Holy crap, I just stumbled upon your post; it's basically a mirror image of my living situation. I currently receive about $3,000 a month from my mom while working a shitty local government job that pays $29,850 per year. Yep, all that cash for a graduate with 1 Ivy MS and a T3 JD.

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  3. HLPFL:
    I stumbled upon some cases through my dads restaurants, basically customers. I didnt feel confident taking the cases on by my own so I looked for someone that was willing to split the settlements but not give the cases away for a referral. So my brothers roomate from undergrad is a attorney, who introduced me to his litigator buddy. We split the cases, i brought some more work (basically employer claims and basic PI soft issue cases) and he hired me. But for my contacts with the restaurants i would have never gotten this job. But for my parents support (they are wealthy) my life would suck horribly.

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  4. Subprime:

    Congrats on the job! Also, thank you for your honesty about your parents' help. So many people neglect to include that in their calculations. Your honesty was refreshing.

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  5. This is good! You're ahead of a lot of people, but you don't rub it in. Thank you for providing the complete picture of a Tier 4 grad.

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  6. I have gone through this blog. I found it very interesting and helpful. Nowadays I am completing my online degree course from home.
    So this blog really doing great for me.


    Part time jobs online

    ReplyDelete

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