Most states (including Indiana) have too many lawyers

July 5, 2011
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This news doesn’t help Indiana Tech in its explanation for why it’s decided to open up a law school in northeast Indiana. Economic Modeling Specialists Inc., a consulting company that looks at employment data and provides economic analysis, found there are more attorneys than jobs available in nearly every state.

According to its data, it estimates there will be 339 annual openings each year from 2010 to 2015. Sounds good for those recent grads and unemployed attorneys looking for jobs, right? The bad news is that in 2009, 602 people passed the bar here. If we took these numbers as fact, then every year, 263 would not be able to find a job in the legal profession. Granted, you have to consider that maybe some of the people who passed the bar may take jobs out of state or jobs in which they don’t need to become members of the bar. But that still leaves more attorneys than jobs here.

New York fared the worst – EMSI estimates it has more than 7,600 attorneys than jobs in that state. For those with legal degrees willing to go where the work is, try Nebraska, Wisconsin or Washington, D.C. The report shows Nebraska could actually use three more attorneys, Wisconsin has a deficit of 14 attorneys (although the number could be skewed because you don’t have to pass the bar to practice in that state), and D.C. is looking for nearly 350 lawyers. Overall, the nation has a surplus of more than 27,000 attorneys.

This is just one study, but it does offer a glimpse at how tough the job market is for attorneys right now. EMSI used the number of people who passed the bar in each state and compared that to an estimate of job openings for attorneys in those states. It also looked at data from the Department of Education on law school graduates to determine the number of new lawyers.

Tell me why then Indiana Tech thinks it’s a good idea to open up a law school. They claim their research tells them Indiana is actually underserved when it comes to lawyers.

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  • It's obvious
    Indiana Tech is trying to make sure that some out of work lawyers get jobs as faculty at their new law school...after all, it will be 3 years that they will help the attorney employment percentage in Indiana before they have their first graduating class...makes sense don't you think?
  • Nonsense!
    Why doesn't the ABA mandate lawschools limit law school students to some number to justify the the excessive tuition. I pity young law students.
  • Missing the point
    I believe you all are missing the bigger picture. Though there are out of work "lawyers" in every state, there are still many JDs getting jobs where they aren't practicing (by choice and design) all over the country. In addition, there are more law school applicants than there are law school open slots. Why shouldn't Indiana Tech provide a service to people interested in a law school education? Practicing law isn't the only purpose for obtaining your JD.

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  1. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

  2. Mazel Tov to the newlyweds. And to those bakers, photographers, printers, clerks, judges and others who will lose careers and social standing for not saluting the New World (Dis)Order, we can all direct our Two Minutes of Hate as Big Brother asks of us. Progress! Onward!

  3. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

  4. If justice is not found in a court room, it's time to clean house!!! Even judges are accountable to a higher Judge!!!

  5. The small claims system, based on my recent and current usage of it, is not exactly a shining example of justice prevailing. The system appears slow and clunky and people involved seem uninterested in actually serving justice within a reasonable time frame. Any improvement in accountability and performance would gain a vote from me. Speaking of voting, what do the people know about judges and justice from the bench perspective. I think they have a tendency to "vote" for judges based on party affiliation or name coolness factor (like Stoner, for example!). I don't know what to do in my current situation other than grin and bear it, but my case is an example of things working neither smoothly, effectively nor expeditiously. After this experience I'd pay more to have the higher courts hear the case -- if I had the money. Oh the conundrum.

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