Careers

How lawyers can avoid burnout and debilitating anxiety

Soon after graduating from New York University School of Law and joining the corporate practice of a white-shoe Manhattan law firm, Will Meyerhofer gained 45 pounds, was sleep-deprived and was frequently sick. "I was a nervous wreck. I was shattered," says Meyerhofer, who'd also graduated from Harvard. "Even though I got to the very top, I was treated like an idiot and I felt I didn't belong in the field. I was a mess. At the end of the day, I really only looked forward to seeing my dog."

I Have Been A Law Firm Partner For A Year. How Is It Different From Life As An Associate?

So when the shareholders at my law firm extended me an invitation to become an owner, I hesitated. The thought of becoming a business owner troubled my inner commitment-phobe. But eventually I signed on, mostly out of curiosity and also because the thought of having people call me their boss sounded hilarious.

Top 10 law schools for people who actually want to become lawyers

No huge surprise: The list is dominated by schools in the top 15 of U.S. News & World Report’s law school ranking. However, Yale -- the No. 1 law school in the country according to U.S. News -- doesn’t make the top 10: It has an employment rate of 91.3%, lower than most of its top tier rivals, and a bar pass rate of 91.9%, only good enough for 14th place in that category.

How to: return to the profession

How do you revive your legal career after taking a lengthy break? Jonathan Rayner found out at a returner course.
The room is crammed with dormant talent primed to awake. Delegate after delegate talks from the floor of years in practice, some in the City, others in-house, still others in government. But their careers, we hear, are currently ‘paused’, to use a newly popular term, by children and other caring commitments. Or they have followed, often abroad, where their partners’ careers have led. It is a familiar story and there is no apparent bitterness. It has ever been thus, seems the common perception.

Attorneys share how military service has helped shape their legal careers

In 1957, James C. “Jim” Rinaman Jr. was at a crossroad.

Should the young U.S. Army Armor Branch first lieutenant continue his promising military career in the regular Army or pursue his dream of becoming an attorney?

Rinaman ultimately went with his father’s advice, which he said sounds like something Yogi Berra might have said: If you can’t decide what to do, pick the alternative that leaves the most alternatives open.

A former lawyer who left a steady 6-figure job explains what it's like to take the leap

"I've always wanted to work for myself," she explains. "I didn't feel like the partnership track in a law firm is right for me. I would look around and think there were really no women here who have the kind of career I want and the family life I hope to have. I knew I wanted a family, and I knew I wanted to spend time with that family."

Teaching the Technology of Practice: The 10 Top Schools

About the Authors

Richard Granat is president of DirectLaw Inc., a virtual law firm platform provider, and LawMediaLabs Inc. He also serves as co-director of the Center for Law Practice Technology at Florida Coastal School of Law and co-chairs the ABA’s eLawyering Task Force.

Marc Lauritsen, author of The Lawyer’s Guide to Working Smarter With Knowledge Tools (ABA Law Practice Division 2010), is president of Capstone Practice Systems and of Legal Systematics. He directed the clinical program at Harvard Law School and has worked extensively on document drafting and decision support systems. He also co-chairs the ABA’s eLawyering Task Force.