Legal sector cuts 1,100 jobs in May

June 11, 2008
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Looks like the legal profession is starting to feel the effects of the slowing economy. According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor, the U.S. legal sector lost 1,100 jobs in May. That’s the third consecutive month of losses for the industry. But lawyers, clerks, paralegals, and others aren’t having just a bad couple of months. Overall, the legal services sector in the U.S. has cut 4,200 jobs in the last six months and nearly 10,000 since last year at this time.



What about Indiana? So far, the public sentiment seems to be that Indiana law firms aren’t reeling from the downturn in the economy like firms in Chicago, New York, or other larger markets. Indiana attorneys often tout the fact that national legal trends – especially the negative ones – don’t often happen here, are slow to happen, or don’t happen on the kind of scale that other markets see. Indiana’s Department of Workforce Development keeps records of legal profession job numbers, but only by year, so it’s hard to know how Indiana legal workers have fared this year.



Do Indiana attorneys just have their heads in the sand, hoping the dark cloud of job cuts will blow past Indiana? There may be some signs that Indiana isn’t immune to legal job cuts due to the economy. Indiana Lawyer reporter Rebecca Berfanger had several firms deny her request for interviews about whether their summer associate hiring has been affected by the state of the economy, which usually means there isn’t good news to report. Law firms rarely deny a chance to tout the positive happenings at their firms.
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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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