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More 2012 law grads find jobs, but overall employment rate dips

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The overall employment rate for 2012 law school graduates is at the lowest its been in nearly 20 years, according to data released by NALP Thursday.

NALP looks at the employment rate of law grads as of Feb. 15, which is nine months after a May graduation. The Class of 2012 obtained more jobs than the 2011 grads, but this was because the 2012 class was larger. The overall employment rate fell to 84.7 percent, which is the lowest since 1994, NALP reports. Since 1985, only two classes have had an overall employment rate below 84.7 percent – grads from 1992 and 1993.

The overall employment rate has now fallen five years in a row.

“It is important to understand that the jobs picture is improving, if only slightly. This class found more jobs — and more jobs in private practice — than the previous class, but because the national graduating class was so much bigger, the overall employment rate continued to fall,” NALP Executive Director James Leipold said. “Median starting salaries for this class have also rebounded slightly, reflecting the availability of more jobs with the largest law firms — those that pay the highest salaries — than existed for the previous class. On the other hand, the percentage of graduates who found full-time, long term employment in jobs requiring bar passage remained below 60 percent.

“It is a story of good news and bad news at this point. I continue to believe that the Class of 2011 represented the absolute bottom of the curve on the jobs front, and the results for the Class of 2012 bear that out, showing, as they do, a number of improving markers."

The national median salary for the Class of 2012 based on the reported salaries was $61,245 as compared to $60,000 for the previous class. The national mean for last year’s class also improved to $80,798 as compared to $78,653 for the Class of 2011.

NALP also found that only 64.4 percent of 2012 graduates obtained jobs that required bar passage – the lowest percentage the organization has ever measured. Half of graduates found legal or other jobs in the private sector, with the business sector coming in second at nearly 18 percent.

The full report can be read here.

 

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  1. IF the Right to Vote is indeed a Right, then it is a RIGHT. That is the same for ALL eligible and properly registered voters. And this is, being able to cast one's vote - until the minute before the polls close in one's assigned precinct. NOT days before by absentee ballot, and NOT 9 miles from one's house (where it might be a burden to get to in time). I personally wait until the last minute to get in line. Because you never know what happens. THAT is my right, and that is Mr. Valenti's. If it is truly so horrible to let him on school grounds (exactly how many children are harmed by those required to register, on school grounds, on election day - seriously!), then move the polling place to a different location. For ALL voters in that precinct. Problem solved.

  2. "associates are becoming more mercenary. The path to partnership has become longer and more difficult so they are chasing short-term gains like high compensation." GOOD FOR THEM! HELL THERE OUGHT TO BE A UNION!

  3. Let's be honest. A glut of lawyers out there, because law schools have overproduced them. Law schools dont care, and big law loves it. So the firms can afford to underpay them. Typical capitalist situation. Wages have grown slowly for entry level lawyers the past 25 years it seems. Just like the rest of our economy. Might as well become a welder. Oh and the big money is mostly reserved for those who can log huge hours and will cut corners to get things handled. More capitalist joy. So the answer coming from the experts is to "capitalize" more competition from nonlawyers, and robots. ie "expert systems." One even hears talk of "offshoring" some legal work. thus undercutting the workers even more. And they wonder why people have been pulling for Bernie and Trump. Hello fools, it's not just the "working class" it's the overly educated suffering too.

  4. And with a whimpering hissy fit the charade came to an end ... http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2016/07/27/all-charges-dropped-against-all-remaining-officers-in-freddie-gray-case/ WHISTLEBLOWERS are needed more than ever in a time such as this ... when politics trump justice and emotions trump reason. Blue Lives Matter.

  5. "pedigree"? I never knew that in order to become a successful or, for that matter, a talented attorney, one needs to have come from good stock. What should raise eyebrows even more than the starting associates' pay at this firm (and ones like it) is the belief systems they subscribe to re who is and isn't "fit" to practice law with them. Incredible the arrogance that exists throughout the practice of law in this country, especially at firms like this one.

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