Posts Tagged ‘legal education’

Law Review Roundup

Although the law school blogs have put forth great effort in warning the general public, mainstream news media outlets have begun to address the issue. For those who shrieked that scam bloggers were emotional, dramatic and weren’t basing their information on facts, we have over time, demonstrated the latter to be false. Of course one would be emotional when statististcs demonstrate that one was duped in a fraudulent scheme of the higher education industrial complex while the student loan business has produced generations of indentured servants reduced to menial labor and the contempt of the public who already have a disdain for lawyers. 

The following is a short list of primarily ACADEMIC refereed law journal articles addressing the law school scam, student loans and law school, law school scam blogs and the call for reform of the law school for-profit industry. This was not just a temporal problem nor the call for reform a fad by disgruntled attorneys/recent law graduates. This demonstrates a fundamental need for a paradigm shift in the way law schools fraudulently represent job statistics, benefits of attending and not attending law schools, and the basic requirement to address the next round of defaults: student loans. 

The reality is that the legal industry has greatly declined due to mass production business model characterized by LPOs and increased usage of temporary attorneys. 

Anyway, here is the list of law review articles:

Redeeming a Lost Generation: ‘The Year of Law School Litigation’ and the Future of the Law School Transparency Movement 88 Indiana Law Journal 773 (2013). http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2134009

You’re Doing It Wrong: How the Anti-Law School Scam Blogging Movement Can Shape the Legal Profession, Lucille A. Jewel. 12.1 Minnesota Journal of Law, Science & Technology 239 (2013).
http://mjlst.umn.edu/prod/groups/ahc/@pub/@ahc/@mjlst/documents/asset/ahc_asset_366141.pdf

What Ails the Law Schools, Paul Horowitz, 111 Michigan Law Review 955 (2013)
http://www.michiganlawreview.org/assets/pdfs/111/6/Horwitz.pdf

Perspectives on Legal Education Reform: The Crisis in Legal Education: Dabbling in Disaster Planning, K.P. McEntee, et al. 46 U. Mich. J.L. Reform 225 (2012).
http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2188668

Options for Student Loan Borrowers: A Derivatives-Based Proposal to Protect Students and Control Debt Fueled Inflation in the Higher Education Market, Michael C. Macchiarola; Arun Abraham. 20 Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy 67 (2010).
http://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/research/JLPP/upload/CJP102-Macchiarola-Abraham-2.pdf

The National Law Journal, “Consensus Emerging that Law School Model Is ‘Is Not Sustainable’ ” (2010)

Advertisements

Quicklist PART II: Law School is a Bad Investment News Articles

Quicklist PART II: Law School is a Bad Investment News Articles
Too Many Law Schools and Law School: A Poor Investment:
2013 Mainstream News Articles List

These news articles are provided for quick reference as similar issues have been addressed in depth in prior posts:

07/24/2013: Tampa Bay Times, Blumner: Laying down the law school, Robyn E. Blumner
http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/columns/laying-down-the-law-school/2132968

07/22/2013:
Bloomberg News, When Law School is No Longer a Safe Bet
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-22/when-law-is-no-longer-a-safe-bet.html

07/19/2013:
The Nashville Ledger, The Case of the Shrinking Law Schools:
Enrollment slides as sotential students argue costs v. benefits
Friday, Vol. 37, No. 29
Jeannie Naujeck
http://www.nashvilleledger.com/editorial/ArticleEmail.aspx?id=67645

04/25/2013: Foreign Policy, Should You Go to Law School?
The good, the bad, and the ugly about getting a J.D., Rosa Brooks
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/04/25/should_you_go_to_law_school

04/05/2013:  The Huffington Post, If Law School Affordability Doesn’t Improve, Enrollment Will Continue To Decline: Analysis,Tyler Kingkade
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/05/law-school-affordability-enrollment_n_3023091.html

03/21/2013: CNBC, Courtroom Drama: Too Many Lawyers, Too Few Jobs, Mark Koba
http://www.cnbc.com/id/100569350

03/14/2013
Washington Monthly, Why Law School Doesn’t Work Anymore, Daniel Luzer
http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2013_03/why_law_school_doesnt_work_any043593.php

Bloomberg’s News Article, Death of the Legal Industry and its Obituary

Law school No Longer a Safe Safe Bet
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-22/when-law-is-no-longer-a-safe-bet.html
Bloomberg News

Although the article seems to mourn associates and their high salaries which the author recognizes is only a small percentage of actual attorneys, it gives the reader a backlash if you are a law graduate. It references how white collar employees who demeaned or look down upon blue collar workers in the 1950s who chose to forego higher education. This portion is distasteful as many law graduates who graduated before the 2008 economic collapse but in the late 1990s or later had nothing to do with 1950s social stigma as they were not even born and just emphasizes what I pointed out in the last point that no one cares what happens to attorneys as society has nearly always relegated practitioners as underhanded, spoiled, backstabbers and overpaid. The author basically gives a “middle finger” to attorneys and reflects why there is lack of support of reform from the accrediting agencies to those on Capitol Hill. The article did however discussed the legal industry as dead (yet more confirmation from mainstream media) and even wrote its obituary. A portion of the news article is displayed below:
_______________________________________________________

When I was contemplating becoming an English major, lo these many years ago, one helpful counselor told me that despite the stereotypes, English majors had lots of job opportunities. Advertising, public relations, academia. “And there’s always law school!” she said chirpily.
I didn’t end up going to law school; instead, after graduating, I embarked on a peripatetic odyssey of jobs and graduate school that culminated in my becoming a journalist. But I can imagine an alternative universe in which I did go to law school. Law school has long been the backup plan for humanities majors who don’t quite dare to apply for food stamps.
That era appears to be ending. Noam Scheiber writes the obituary:
“‘Stable’ is not the way anyone would describe a legal career today. In the past decade, twelve major firms with more than 1,000 partners between them have collapsed entirely. The surviving lawyers live in fear of suffering a similar fate, driving them to ever-more humiliating lengths to edge out rivals for business. ‘They were cold-calling,’ says the lawyer whose firm once turned down no-name clients. And the competition isn’t just external. Partners routinely make pitches behind the backs of colleagues with ties to a client. They hoard work for themselves even when it requires the expertise of a fellow partner. They seize credit for business that younger colleagues bring in.
“And then there are the indignities inflicted on new lawyers, known as associates. The odds are increasingly long that a recent law-school grad will find a job. Five years ago, during a recession, American law schools produced 43,600 graduates and 75 percent had positions as lawyers within nine months. Last year, the numbers were 46,500 and 64 percent. In addition to the emotional toll unemployment exacts, it is often financially ruinous. The average law student graduates $100,000 in debt.
“Meanwhile, those lucky enough to have a job are constantly reminded of their expendability. ‘I knew people who had month-to-month leases who were making $200,000 a year,’ says an associate who joined a New York firm in 2010. They are barred from meetings and conference calls to hold down a client’s bill, even pulled off of cases entirely. They regularly face mass layoffs. Many of the tasks they performed until five or ten years ago—like reviewing hundreds of pages of documents—are outsourced to a reserve army of contract attorneys, who toil away at one-third the pay. ‘All these people kept on going into this empty office,’ recalls a former associate at a Washington firm. ‘No one introduced them. They were on the floor wearing business suits. … It was extremely creepy.’ Still, any associate tempted to resent these scabs should consider the following: Legal software is rapidly replacing them, too.”

Reminder to Law Graduates: Student Loans Are Not Dischargeable

Early last year I posted about recent law graduates who filed bankruptcy due to student loans: 
‘Breaking News (02/03/2012): Law grads go to Court for Bankruptcy Protection’
https://lifesmockery.wordpress.com/2012/02/03/breaking-news-02032012-law-grads-go-to-court-for-bankruptcy-protection/

This is to remind law graduates and those who plan to attend law school and estimate that if their law career doesn’t hold muster that they can seek relief from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. This is not the case, you do not have the protection of the law on your side, it is all for big business and corporate greed. As other bloggers continue to emphasize: student loans are non-dischargable debt.

The following TIME magazine article, also from last year explains the same: Why Can’t You Discharge Student Loans in Bankruptcy, TIME Magazine, February 09, 2012:
http://business.time.com/2012/02/09/why-cant-you-discharge-student-loans-in-bankruptcy/

Opinion: Contract Work & ‘Minorities’

The following simply needs to be said and the reader can take this with a grain of salt:

Most contract attorneys’ general self esteem is so low due to a feeling of powerless or incompetence that they focus on attackng (false accusations, name calling, other manners of one sided anatgonism) one another (who are usually complete strangers) for one more day or even a few hours more of hours of work to increase their unpredictable paychecks. This phenomenon is most pervasive among Black attorneys who know that they have been already been shut out of the mainstream workforce and solidifies mainstream America’s perception that most possess the inability to be professional, complete assignments that they are PAID to do, to speak in a normal tone in which they do not sound like childish bullies, nor do most embrace diversity.  It appears to be simple but these are insurmountable tasks for ghetto blacks who attain a JD and nothing else. No prepared goals or self development or expansion of their views including the world around them, resulting in tunnel vision and narrowminded mindset.  As a result the ‘gangsta’ and ‘b****y’ troublemaking attitudes exacerbates the problems that minorities have in this shrinking field. Of course not all Blacks in law or even legal contract work are like this. But most who are one will notice are contract attorneys, others who aren’t are unfortunately and oft-times swept up into the stereotype bin sourrounded by those with the ‘crabs in a barrel’ mentality. This is easily perceptible among Black women.  

With the given financial problems that law schools, law firms and law students and attorneys are facing, these inappropriate, narcicssitic and childish behaviors only make it easier to shut minorities who do not possess these characteristics out of the workforce regardless of ambition, talent or intelligence.

I do not dare assert that doing contract work will lead to a job–most attorneys who are not new law school graduates know this is false. The problem is that attorneys with deranged mentalities find joy in creating a hostile, disruptive work environment in an already degrading set of circumstances and I see it primarily among women. (Black, White and Asian) Perhaps this is why most people assume all contract attorneys are bipolar, schizophrenic or possess some other type of mental defect.

In other words, these types of people in the field make it harder for people of color who are generally normal and desire success and do not have plans to be in those types of environments for the long haul.

The only type of people who enjoy mischief and harming innocent strangers can simply be described as demonic. Another reason why no one cares what happens to attorneys.

Quicklist: Law School is a Bad Investment News Articles

Law School: A Poor Investment:
2013 Mainstream News Articles List

These news articles are provided for quick reference as some have already been addressed in depth in prior posts:

04/19/2013, Volume 23, Issue 15
Is a legal education worth its costs?
http://library.cqpress.com/cqresearcher/document.php?id=cqresrre2013041900&PHPSESSID=p8dg0htm1e5n9ljtk3qj6u4s81#.Ud13_v15mc

03/19/2013: U.S. News & World Reports, ‘Make an Informed Decision When Considering Law School –Law prof Paul Campos advises a critical look at job statistics before students pursue J.D. degrees.’ Michael Morella 
http://www.usnews.com/education/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/articles/2013/03/19/make-an-informed-decision-when-considering-law-school

TIME Magazine 03/11/2013: Just How Bad Off Are Law School Graduates?
http://ideas.time.com/2013/03/11/just-how-bad-off-are-law-school-graduates/

Huffington Post
Legal Education Crisis: Schools Need to Cut the Fluff http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-nuckols/legal-education-crisis-sc_b_2863170.html
Mark Nuckols 03/12/2013

Huffington Post
Why You Should Not Go to Law School
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tucker-max/law-school_b_2713943.html Tucker Max, 02/18/2013

02/15/2013: Hard lessons from record-low law school applications, Vera H-C Chan.
http://news.yahoo.com/hard-lessons-from-record-low-law-school-applications-200701891.html
02/10/2013:
One Law School Dean Tells Us The Real Reason No One Wants a JD Anymore
http://www.businessinsider.com/stephen-sheppard-paul-campos-brian-tamanaha-law-school-bubble-2013-2

01/30/2013: The New York Times, Law Schools’ Applications Fall as Costs Rise and Jobs Are Cut, Ethan Bronner. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/31/education/law-schools-applications-fall-as-costs-rise-and-jobs-are-cut.html

2013: More Rejection Letters

Select Rejection Letters 2013–Need I say more?
06/03/2013: Dear [     ]
We would like to thank you for applying to the above vacancy.

After a careful review of the background and qualifications of all candidates, we regret to inform you that you have not been selected for the shortlist.  Although you were not short-listed for this position, you may want to continue to review the opportunities in myJobWorld (http://myjobworld).  

We would like to take this opportunity to wish you continued success in the future and to thank you for your interest in this position.  
Kind regards,
Human Resources Services
The World Bank Group

NOTE: THIS MESSAGE IS SYSTEM GENERATED – YOU CANNOT REPLY TO THIS MESSAGE.

05/14/2013: Thank you for your interest in the International Relations faculty position
at UC Berkeley. This search was highly competitive, and unfortunately your application is no longer under consideration. We appreciate the time and energy invested in your application, and encourage you to apply for positions listed in the future. 

We wish you every personal and professional success with your job search.

Sincerely,
Kathleen Spaw
Academic Personnel Analyst

Re: Position 1758 – UC Berkeley International Relations Faculty Position

05/14/2013:

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY    
USCIS HR OPERATIONS CENTER    
70 KIMBALL AVENUE
SOUTH BURLINGTON VT  05403    

 Dear [           ]    

   This refers to the application you recently submitted to this office for the position below:    

Position Title: Entry Level Attorney    
Pay Plan:       GS   
Series/Grade: 0905-12    
Vacancy ID:      826700    
Announcement Number:      CIS-826700-COU    

Hiring Office: US Citizenship and Immigration Services    

Results regarding your recent referral to the Hiring Official are as follows:    

Referral Type:      Non-Traditional  
Appointment Type: Excepted Service Permanent    
Specialty / Grade:      0905 – 12    
Promotion Potential:      15    
Locations: Location Negotiable After Selection    

Thank you for applying for this position.  Your application has been considered.  However, another applicant was selected.  We appreciate your interest in employment with our agency.    
Audit Code:    NS    
Code Definition:    Not Selected    
Code Explanation:    

The selecting office has indicated that you were not selected for the position.    

Thank you for your interest in Federal employment.  You are encouraged to visit http://www.usajobs.gov to view additional Federal employment opportunities and information.    

PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL MESSAGE.  IT IS AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED.    

For additional information, please refer to the vacancy announcement for this position.    

05/03/2013
Recently we received your resume/application for the Humanities/Philosophy, Undergraduate School – Adjunct Faculty (Req# 8644) position at UMUC. Unfortunately, the University has decided that the position will not be recruited at this time. Please visit our career page where you can explore other opportunities that may be of interest http://www.umuc.edu/employment .

Thank you for your time and interest in UMUC. 
Sincerely, 
Talent Acquisition
Office of Human Resources

04/29/2013:
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY    
USCIS HR OPERATIONS CENTER    
70 KIMBALL AVENUE
SOUTH BURLINGTON VT  05403    

Dear [         ]
This refers to the application you recently submitted to this office for the position below:    

   Position Title: Entry Level Attorney    
   Pay Plan:  GS    
   Series/Grade: 0905-11    
   Vacancy ID:      826700    
   Announcement Number: CIS-826700-COU    

   Hiring Office: US Citizenship and Immigration Services    

Results regarding your recent referral to the Hiring Official are as follows:    

   Referral Type: Non-Traditional  
   Appointment Type: Excepted 
     Service Permanent    
   Specialty / Grade:      0905 – 11    
   Promotion Potential:      15    
   Locations: Location Negotiable After Selection    

Thank you for applying for this position.  Your application has been considered.  However, another applicant was selected.  We appreciate your interest in employment with our agency.    

   Audit Code:   NS    
   Code Definition:   Not Selected  
   Code Explanation:    

The selecting office has indicated that you were not selected for the position.    

Thank you for your interest in Federal employment.  You are encouraged to visit http://www.usajobs.gov to view additional Federal employment opportunities and information.    

PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL MESSAGE.  IT IS AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED.    

For additional information, please refer to the vacancy announcement for this position.

04/26/2013:    
EXECUTIVE OFFICE FOR US ATTYS    
DO NOT MAIL APPLICATIONS    
YOU MUST APPLY ONLINE
WASHINGTON DC  20530    

Dear [          ]

This refers to the application you recently submitted to this office for the position below:    

   Position Title: Assistant United 
    States Attorney    
   Vacancy ID:      844037    
   Series/Grade:    N/A    

The agency has cancelled  or postponed filling this vacancy.    

Thank you for your interest in Federal employment.  You are encouraged to visit http://www.usajobs.gov to view additional Federal employment opportunities and information.    

 PLEASE DO NOT RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL MESSAGE.  IT IS AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED.    

For additional information, please refer to the vacancy announcement for this position.

04/15/2013:
[AP Search] JPF00011 J.D./LL.M./J.S.D. Program Tenured Faculty Search

Dear Applicant,
The Search Committee has concluded their review of applicants for the J.D./L.L.M/J.S.D. Program faculty position at Berkeley Law. There were a number of candidates applying for the position, and after much consideration, we regret to inform you that your application is no longer under consideration. 

We appreciate your patience during this long review process and thank you for your interest.

– Berkeley Law, Academic Positions    

04/06/2013: 
Hello [            ]
Thank you for taking the time to apply with us. We are unable to offer you a position at this time, but we do appreciate your interest in Target.

Target (YOU READ CORRECTLY-T-A-R-G-E-T)

For years trying these tactics have not and still do not work:  Informational interviewing with former professors, colleagues, referrals and attorneys I met at conferences didn’t help, going to different cities and knocking door to door to speak with legal secretaries and receptionists, parking lots of different businesses, and handing out one’s resume provided no leads though I get “You have all this” and “you seem great”, discussing the issue with volunteers at non-profits only to be provided the “you are doing everything right” or “that’s a shame,” registering at different state employment agencies though providing free services and undergoing verbal abuse and contempt on a daily basis by civil (oxymoron) workers who find out how educated you are leads to them not wanting them to help you or to see you succeed as they complain about how they did not “get” a chance to go to university and it doesn’t matter because these places focus on retail, IT or blue collar jobs that have no intetest in you; professional outreach workshops and networking provided few leads all the while continuously applying to jobs blind via online and postal mail; including those advertised at federal agencies, which provided no compensation at the federal Assistant Attorneys Office to only be told you are eligible; qualified; ranked among the best qualified and have the credentials and more but [herein lies the secret-you’re not white; you’re not male; you’re not IVY League; you don’t have connections; how would it look for us politically–in other words, for whichever reasons, we do not want YOUR kind here]

Don’t take a gamble with your future, especially if you’re a minority. Sallie Mae doesn’t care how hard you try, they will devour you.

HBO: Underemployed Attorneys Get Taken Advantage Of

The other day I was perusing through the channels and stumbled upin a documentary on HBO about public defenders.

The film focused on attorneys from particular areas in the State of Georgia. Although the documentary followed them through trials; it also took aim at what working for state and local government does to them.

One female attorney said that she gets countless cases and low pay and that “you mean after all Ive done, after paying all my bills all I have is $20  (that’s right twenty dollars) left in my account?” 

“I have six figure student debt.”

“This is what you think of us?” She went on to discuss how a client was plotting her murder in the courtroom just in case the verdict isn’t what the defendant wants. Some other clients in jail warned her and a clip showed her crying and stating how she always visited the jail and was supportive of the defendant even if she wasn’t going to specifically discuss his case but he would call because no family or friends of his would see him.

She apparently cared about her job and work product while her employer saw her as a tool and cog in the hamster wheel with no pay.

The film goes on to a support group for public defenders. What disgusted me was a senior Public Defender tries to convince overworked, burnt out, under-paid over the head indebted aspiring attorneys to stick with it. He had the gall to try to compare what they do to the civil rights movement which he was clearly reaching because many of the attorneys were people of color.

It would have been more accurate to refer to the US Constitution. The civil rights was about human rights and discrimination based solely or primarily on skin color and ethnicity.

Towards the end they get treated to a special lunch in Washington, DC with Congressman Ray Lewis. 
Dear reader,  one now must ask him or herself whether the mental, physical and financial toll worth being an attorney, let alone an underpaid public defender while your future has been or will be cast on a wayward slope—accelerating downhill?

Do not go to law school. It simply is not worth it!

Woa Tells Us How You Really Feel: Forbes-Why Attending Law School Is The Worst Career Decision You’ll Ever Make

Why Attending Law School Is The Worst Career Decision You’ll Ever Make; Forbes Magazine, 06/26/2012

Not my words, words of Forbes magazine contributor. Wow, the magazine that is all about investing, making money, describing the wealthiest people around the world telling you law school is a bad investment. May we say told you so? This is major. We already witnessed The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal joining in the protest of ‘say no to law school,’ but Forbes. I must say this is great!

The news for would-be attorneys keeps getting worse. According to analysis from the Wall Street Journal released yesterday, only 55% of class of 2011 law school grads were employed full-time as lawyers nine months after graduation. The other 45% may be unemployed, working at Starbucks or starting their own law school hate blogs. LOVE IT.

The message that law school is no longer a sure bet when it comes to employment security and financial prosperity finally seems to be sinking in for potential students. In the last two years, the number of law school applicants has dropped by almost a quarter and the number of LSAT tests administered by the Law School Admissions Council has declined by 16%. How long we’ve been writing about this? False assurance of upward mobility, excessive debt, financial indentured servant status…This is so redundant, yet so true

Some law schools may be reducing admissions but…

That’s not stopping new law schools from forming? What, say it isn’t so. As long as you 0L keep falling for it, they’ll keep building. “If you make it they will come.” We see how much the ABA is looking out for the legal indu$try…

Here’s the article UMass Law School Gets Provisional Accreditation from ABA:The Wall Street Journal, 06/13/2012

Some law schools are endeavoring to produce fewer graduates or to “reboot” legal education, but for others, the accreditation process keeps moving along.

Massachusetts’ first public law school, the University of Massachusetts School of Law in Dartmouth, has received provisional accreditation from the American Bar Association, the Boston Globe reported.

Two words to describe this industry “cha-ching.”

The school will get full accreditation after meeting ABA standards for the next three years. Meanwhile, its students will be able to take the bar exam in any state. Previously, they could only do so in Massachusetts or Connecticut.

The provisional accreditation is expected to bring increased applications to the school, which now has 325 students, the Globe noted.

“ABA accreditation is the gold seal of approval for law schools,” retiring UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Jean MacCormack said, the Herald News reported.

The school was created in 2010 at the location of the former Southern New England School of Law.

As WSJ reported, the ABA accredited 10 new law schools since 2006, and the number of law graduates increased to 44,495 this year from 42,673 in that time. The number of applicants to law school has been falling recently — 14% this year from last.

Law Blog noted recently that the ABA granted a five-year extension to Tennessee’s Lincoln Memorial University to get accreditation, after denying preliminary approval last year. The extension allows students to sit for the bar exam in Tennessee.

« Previous entries