I received an anonymous tip that deserves some treatment.
When one is laid off from their law firm job or never finds one to begin with, there are very few options. You could put out a shingle, like I did--but that requires experience. If we know anything from the past couple years, law schools don't promise you that you will be able to actually practice when you graduate (nor a job or a prospect at getting one). So, you're usually stuck living in your parents basement and racing to send your resume to various recruiters for temporary projects that pay $22 to $35 an hour with no overtime. Even those are hard to come by.
Another little known option is per diem work. Per diem work entails making court appearances for status conferences and defending depositions for little to no money. The work can be sporadic and stressful as you're often given many conferences in different courtrooms in one county. Imagine you have 4 conferences on in Kings County Supreme Court (all in different court rooms) and then another at Civil Court (a different building) at the same time. It happens. And for all of that running around, my tipster tells me that she gets $75 dollars for the first appearance and $35 for each additional conference, assuming that each conference is an hour. Otherwise, your rate is discounted. Sounds bad, but not horrible---right?
Here's the real kicker. The excuses that he uses for non-payment, according to the tipster, he says that paypal is not working, he's sick, he had a death in the family, food poisoning, non-payment by the firms that contract with him, he's got bills too... the list goes on and on. And every time he pays, you'll only get $300 a pop. And if you stop working for him, God Forbid--you'll never get paid.
Scum of the scum. And the REAL asshole move is his contract, which specifies that any fee disputes must be dealt with in arbitration. It takes about $700 to file for arbitration. So, you've worked hard for 3 months and you're not likely to get that money and you have no outlet to fight for it.
So, we're living in The Jungle by Upton Sinclair for lawyers. The capitalist pigs take advantage of poor underemployed lawyers and they sink deep into poverty. Lawyers are poor. It's sad. I've actually dropped off on posting because I feel like a broken record repeating the message that is now out there. Law school is for suckers. I still cringe when I hear people say that is what they are doing, but I can't fix stupid.
It's out there and it's on you if you think you're so special that you'll be different. Our parents have raised us incorrectly. When I was a child, the star of the soccer team got a trophy. About 15 years ago, I noticed that all children on the team get trophies. We're not all winners. Some people are the cream of the crop, and the rest of us are just trying to make it. Get real, people.
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