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To the practising lawyers on here: do you enjoy being a lawyer? Watch

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    As above. I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to go into law long-term, but I'm just curious as to what the people on here who have 'made it' think about their jobs.
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    (Original post by geetar)
    As above. I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to go into law long-term, but I'm just curious as to what the people on here who have 'made it' think about their jobs.
    After a number of years in private practice, I have been in-house for the last 7 years with a major international FMCG company.

    Generally, I enjoy my role. I enjoy the intellectual challenge and opportunity to be a senior member of the business. The advice that I give on key issues can shape the direction the business takes. I like working within a strong legal team with peers I respect, direct reports who are bright and hard-working and a boss who is a stand-out in her field. I travel regularly with work which has its pros and cons. No day is ever the same - you never quite know what's going to land on your desk, or what might come through on the email.

    And I get paid well...

    Happy to share more thoughts if of interest.
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    (Original post by chalks)
    After a number of years in private practice, I have been in-house for the last 7 years with a major international FMCG company.

    Generally, I enjoy my role. I enjoy the intellectual challenge and opportunity to be a senior member of the business. The advice that I give on key issues can shape the direction the business takes. I like working within a strong legal team with peers I respect, direct reports who are bright and hard-working and a boss who is a stand-out in her field. I travel regularly with work which has its pros and cons. No day is ever the same - you never quite know what's going to land on your desk, or what might come through on the email.

    And I get paid well...

    Happy to share more thoughts if of interest.
    Chainmail re:the colleague who farts silently and doesn't think anyone else notices?

    PS: If you didn't receive it, it's you. Sorry.
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    I'm a high street solicitor and I do generally enjoy my job. My work is varied, I like doing what I do and my work-life balance is very good. Contrary to most people's assumptions though, I am not paid well.
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    (Original post by chalks)
    After a number of years in private practice, I have been in-house for the last 7 years with a major international FMCG company.

    Generally, I enjoy my role. I enjoy the intellectual challenge and opportunity to be a senior member of the business. The advice that I give on key issues can shape the direction the business takes. I like working within a strong legal team with peers I respect, direct reports who are bright and hard-working and a boss who is a stand-out in her field. I travel regularly with work which has its pros and cons. No day is ever the same - you never quite know what's going to land on your desk, or what might come through on the email.

    And I get paid well...

    Happy to share more thoughts if of interest.
    Could you please explain how you got there (results, W.Exp, Extra curricular stuff, what University you went to and degree you got? How you worked your way into that job?) As I am going into my final year of college and will be heading to and choosing my University next year and I hope to study law but yours is the absolutely perfect job I hope for


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    I enjoy my job a lot. I'm a junior litigator in a medium sized regional firm. My work is very varied and I enjoy getting to go to court quite a bit.

    Being in the regions, I do not get paid very well either compared to what most students think lawyers will/should earn.
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    (Original post by Johnathon16)
    Could you please explain how you got there (results, W.Exp, Extra curricular stuff, what University you went to and degree you got? How you worked your way into that job?) As I am going into my final year of college and will be heading to and choosing my University next year and I hope to study law but yours is the absolutely perfect job I hope for


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    My experiences aren't necessarily a good guide as to what is required today - I went to Uni in 1992.

    But in a nutshell - good A-levels for the time (AAB), good Uni for the time (Newcastle), some travel, usual ECs (some outdoorsy stuff, student mag etc), standard 2:1 in Law. Few vac schemes, interviews at most of the top 10 (at that time). TC at Norton Rose.

    Did TC, then 4 years as a litigator. Moved to Baker & McKenzie Sydney for a couple of years. Moved in-house as a litigator, then head of commercial/corporate team. Currently lead lawyer for Asia Pacific on a group wide restructure, business transformation project.
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    (Original post by geetar)
    As above. I'm pretty sure that I'm not going to go into law long-term, but I'm just curious as to what the people on here who have 'made it' think about their jobs.
    Partner in a provincial full service firm with a couple of hundred people. I do a wide variety of work for primarily for the business community.

    There are days when I would gladly chuck it in but most of the time it is satisfying. Most of my clients are nice people. The financial rewards are nowhere near those in the City for someone of my seniority but are substantial by the standards of where I work and I have probably much greater control over my business and my life than someone working in the City.
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    (Original post by chalks)
    My experiences aren't necessarily a good guide as to what is required today - I went to Uni in 1992.

    But in a nutshell - good A-levels for the time (AAB), good Uni for the time (Newcastle), some travel, usual ECs (some outdoorsy stuff, student mag etc), standard 2:1 in Law. Few vac schemes, interviews at most of the top 10 (at that time). TC at Norton Rose.

    Did TC, then 4 years as a litigator. Moved to Baker & McKenzie Sydney for a couple of years. Moved in-house as a litigator, then head of commercial/corporate team. Currently lead lawyer for Asia Pacific on a group wide restructure, business transformation project.
    Thanks and congratulations


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    I am a newly qualified associate in the Magic Circle. Generally I am positive about it. There are definite downsides including long hours, patronising senior lawyers, unreasonable clients and occasionally mind-numbing work. However, I am paid extremely well. I also think exposure to different areas during the Training Contract is a plus. I have had exposure to a fraud case worth hundreds of millions, disputes involving the price of liquefied natural gas, long term oil and gas contracts, listed company takeovers, private company takeovers, a cross-border insolvency, the LIBOR investigation, disputes involving the misselling of financial products, the sale of a shopping centre... I cannot think of any other job where one could get such varied experiences during your first two years.

    I think this job is very rewarding for someone who is genuinely interested in providing a professional service to clients. You also need to be a bit of a perfectionist, have attention to detail and be interested in law. However the job is demanding, if you are going to be drafting facility letters at 3am you need to be dedicated and interested in what you are doing or it is going to suck.
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    (Original post by jacketpotato)
    I am a newly qualified associate in the Magic Circle. Generally I am positive about it. There are definite downsides including long hours, patronising senior lawyers, unreasonable clients and occasionally mind-numbing work. However, I am paid extremely well. I also think exposure to different areas during the Training Contract is a plus. I have had exposure to a fraud case worth hundreds of millions, disputes involving the price of liquefied natural gas, long term oil and gas contracts, listed company takeovers, private company takeovers, a cross-border insolvency, the LIBOR investigation, disputes involving the misselling of financial products, the sale of a shopping centre... I cannot think of any other job where one could get such varied experiences during your first two years.

    I think this job is very rewarding for someone who is genuinely interested in providing a professional service to clients. You also need to be a bit of a perfectionist, have attention to detail and be interested in law. However the job is demanding, if you are going to be drafting facility letters at 3am you need to be dedicated and interested in what you are doing or it is going to suck.
    I am a couple of years qualified at a Magic Circle firm (having also trained at the same firm). I agree in the most part with the advice above. I don't think many of the Associates in my firm would say we feel very well paid. Don't get me wrong, the remuneration sounds a lot but once you figure out how much you are paid per hour, that figure is not a lot.

    On the upside, however, you can get lots responsibility (contrary to what people might say) and the you'll be involved in lots of work for interesting big clients.

    I enjoy the work that I do and the people I work with (for the most part anyway) but the hours and the pressure can take it's toll. So I like a lot of lawyers, could give you a different response to that question depending on what day you talk to me...
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    As a student looking to study Law next year at York this is a very insightful thread.

    Does anyone have any advice in pursuing training contracts, particularly from Magic Circle and big London firms.
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    I am a barrister practising predominantly in civil law, with most of my cases involving personal injury (plus associated issues like credit hire) and employment law. I'm in a large Chambers outside of London, and it's usual in my Chambers for second six pupils to get a wide variety of experience irrespective of the area that they would ultimately like to practice in. The upshot is that I did do a fair amount of crime initially, which whilst not a viable long term career option for me (to be frank, it doesn't pay well enough, though there are some other issues) it did provide very useful experience in terms of witness handling and such early on. I have been in practice for about two and a half years.

    I really do love my job. The nature of this job, including the rather significant element of being self employed, brings with it certain aspects that would turn off many, including uncertain pay from month to month and absolutely no set routine. Personally I see some of those things as positives, and the clear negatives do not bother me. I do something different in this job every day, and the variety really keeps everything fresh. One day I may be doing a small claim that is done and dusted in one hour all in, and the next week I may have a week long employment tribunal that takes two full days to actually prepare for. Clearly some days are better than others, but even the worse days really aren't that bad. At times my work load can be insane and I work very long hours, but then it always drops off eventually, even if only slightly. Ultimately the job is both challenging and satisfying, I manage to get a good work life balance, and I get paid well. Also, I doubt there are many better feelings than getting a really good result after a difficult or complex trial.
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    I'm thinking about going into criminal law, but I want to move to America for it.

    I might be a lawyer, but I don't see it being that interesting because its a desk job, I want to be in on the action.


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    (Original post by RemiMarcelle)
    I might be a lawyer, but I don't see it being that interesting because its a desk job, I want to be in on the action.
    It depends what type of 'lawyer' you want to be in this country, and what area of law you want to go in to. If criminal law really is your heart's desire you will likely gain significant experience in court whether you become a solicitor or a barrister.
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    (Original post by Crazy Jamie)
    It depends what type of 'lawyer' you want to be in this country, and what area of law you want to go in to. If criminal law really is your heart's desire you will likely gain significant experience in court whether you become a solicitor or a barrister.
    I don't know the difference between a solicitor and a barrister


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    (Original post by RemiMarcelle)
    I don't know the difference between a solicitor and a barrister
    In which case might I suggest researching that point before you make the life altering decision of moving to America based on inaccurate preconceptions.
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    (Original post by Crazy Jamie)
    In which case might I suggest researching that point before you make the life altering decision of moving to America based on inaccurate preconceptions.
    I want to move to America anyway, but I would like to study criminal law because I find it interesting, I just don't know what job I want to do in criminal law.


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    Well it used to be the case that Barristers do the work of presenting the case in Court and the solicitor does all the backroom stuff in preparing the case. This is classically referred to as a split profession. However, Legal Aid reforms, along with the god-awful Legal Services Act 2007, have made that once clear distinction useless.

    If you're moving to America anyway, I'd suggest not doing anything law related over here in England and Wales as a degree. America operates a fused profession in which everyone is considered a lawyer. However, even within that you get people who are good litigators (those will sit at desks) and those who base their work more around courtroom advocacy (i.e the Jack McCoys).

    However, in response to the original question of the thread I may as well throw my two cents in.

    I'm in that legal hinterland that the majority of Law Graduates find themselves in at one point: Post - LPC/BPTC, Pre - Training Contract/Pupillage. So at the moment I'm working in the County Courts doing small scale RTA PI claims. Its not what I got into law to do, I have to admit, but I do enjoy it. Its allowing me to cut my teeth against established practitioners and pupils alike and whilst its not the most complicated area of law it is actually quite interesting.
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    Enjoy is putting it quite strongly. Despite what the other poster said, doing small claim RTAs (after the first few) is soul destroying.

    I'm always happy to share my views on life as a junior barrister. Such fun!
 
 
 
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