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SofiaSmith

Establishing an online presence for new lawyers

Becoming a lawyer is a long and arduous process, and no one seems to tell you that once you go out on your own that journey gets more difficult. Growing your law firm or finding new clients isn’t easy, but there are a few proven strategies that can help you out tremendously. It all starts online Whether it’s on their phone or computer, most people find the services and businesses they need on the internet. This makes it the logical place to start. However, the competition is tough since there are hundreds of lawyers competing for the same few clients…

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Swimming Lessons for Baby Sharks: Practical Advice for New Lawyers

Q: If I am going to miss a deadline, does it help to tell the attorney who assigned the work the reason that I can’t make the deadline? A: Usually, no. Think of it this way: If you go to a restaurant and your food takes an eternity to arrive, are you less hungry because the “kitchen was backed-up”? Are you less annoyed? Probably not. You just decide the restaurant is mismanaged. There are some times that providing an explanation will soften the blow. For example, if you are working around the clock on a high-profile matter, you may get…

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Ms. Pre-JD: Interview with NY AAG Kristen Vogel

This past Spring and Summer, during my internship in the Attorney General’s Litigation Bureau, Assistant Attorney General Kristen Vogel served as a model for the approach I hope to bring to my professional life. My primary lesson from her about soft skills as a female professional was an unspoken one: there is a delicate balance that should come naturally. Kristen always spoke her mind, but made it clear that her opinions were unbiased. She dealt with everyone in the same way, had patience, and stated otherwise negative things in a matter of fact way. While I may have been afraid…

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tammyzhu

Join the Conversation: What For?

“To what purpose?  This was why they started us here [at the tennis academy] so young:  to give ourselves away before the age when the questions why and to what grow real beaks and claws.” – David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest I realize that my posts to date have largely focused on how to increase retention and success of women and racial minorities in high-powered, male-dominated institutions where it takes mentors and sponsors in order to rise up the ranks.  Sometimes these articles make me feel that I should try to stay and make it, that my success is tied…

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mKYCZwhJPG

Swimming Lessons for Baby Sharks: Practical Advice for New Lawyers

Q: I am new at the firm, and I have a legal assistant who has already saved me several times. She is invaluable, and I wanted to show my appreciation, so I invited her to lunch. At first, she eagerly accepted, but as the date was approaching she declined, saying she thought it was better if she did not go to lunch. How can I show my appreciation without having things get awkward? A: Yes. I realize the reference to “the date,” was not intended as a pun, but that may be part of the issue. Your legal assistant may…

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bg3orge

Washington State Family-Leave

The Seattle Times recently reported on a "revolutionary" law, one-decade in the making. Washington State is joining California, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Washington D.C. in mandating employers pay workers' salaries while they take time off for the birth of a child. The Washington State law allows 12 weeks of leave at 90% of income (higher than any other state mandating the pay). This law, which has technically been on the books since 2007, is funded by weekly paycheck contributions from the employee and the employer and will take effect in 2020. I'm sure you can imagine how…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Good News for Women Lawyers With Families

Here is some very good news for women lawyers with family responsibilities.  In her article for Above The Law, Staci Zaretsky describes a new program for women litigators who no longer can make traditional law firm practice work because of childcare responsibilities and other aspects of family life.  She outlines a "hot new trend" of lawyers leaving law firms to join what she describes as a growing field of litigation finance and highlights the efforts of Fulbrook Capital Management in developing a program to fit the needs of women lawyers. Known as "Virtual Women in Law," the program is Fulbrook's…

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jjembapa

Failure Turned Inside Out: Pay It Forward

Name: Kimberly Amrine Professional Title: Director of Diversity & Inclusion for Frost Brown Todd, LLC Sector: Private Law School: George Washington University Law School Things eventually came to a head. Like many recent college graduates, Kim did not know what she was going to do after she graduated from Northwestern University. After all, she did not particularly love school. So, she packed up her little Honda Civic and moved to Washington D.C. Her interest in politics eventually led her to apply for jobs on Capitol Hill. But most of the jobs on the Hill were unpaid and she needed to…

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abell

Re-thinking the OCI Process: Is This Law Firm a Good Fit for Me?

I recently participated as a mock interviewer to prepare rising second year law students for their on-campus interviews (otherwise known as “OCI”). OCI begins right about now when rising second year law students are also learning whether they have been accepted to write for a law journal and/or will compete on Moot Court -- both of which are important in garnering a coveted summer associate position. To put it simply, it is a very stressful and competitive time. The OCI interviews are very quick -- about twenty minutes or less -- and serve as the initial screening process for law firms.…

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gennieantono

Ms. JD Pre-Law: “Table of Contents”

Are you a pre-law student or professional? Read this post first! Hello and welcome to Ms. JD Pre-Law! Our goal is to serve as a resource to, and build a supportive community of, pre-law women around the country. Whether you're a college freshman just starting to develop an interest in the legal profession, or if you already know that you're going to law school this Fall—we have something for you! In addition to organizing in-person events, we also regularly post interviews and other articles on the wider Ms. JD blog. The list below serves as a helpful index to many…

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