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Talk About Law Firms

It's still a little early for me to pose a question like this since I am just about to enter my third year in law school. But I guess, it might pay off if, as early as now, I have some ideas about the existing law firms in the nation.

Posting a thread like this is sort of indispensable to me if everyone knows my condition: I sleep for very lengthy periods, caused by my medical conditions. The reason why I didn't continue my career as a CPA is this.
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Comments

  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    talk about SLAVERY of the highest order.

    Gising ka as early as 5am for court hearing; meet clients lunch time; at the afternoon, start drafting pleadings to beat the deadline. In between of it (drafting), your boss will ask you make minor legal documents like affidavits, contract of sale, contract to sell and the likes.

    and the badest thing:
    pag natalo kaso, ikaw ang haharap sa client and bear all the f'''cking sh'''t. Pag panalo, boss mo ang kakausap and grabbed all the merits (and the CREDITS)

    Uwian time: before or after midnight.

    Kaya, tama lang that I spent one year in a Makati Law firm.
  • ^
    sir I assume that's for big firms. eh pano naman po kapag small law firms lang?
  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    I cannot speak of small law firm. No experience.

    There is this medium law firm I knew, ang game plan is: Under staff; para malaki ang sideline ng lawyers. Ang work load nila good for 20 lawyers but around 10 to 12 lawyers lang ang opis.

    Effect: midnite din ang uwian; Minsan nga dun pa natutulog ang lawyers, e.g., bukas na deadline ng petition. Pag pasok nila sa opis, check their cars, may kumot, may personal unan sila.
  • parkerflyparkerfly PEx Veteran ⭐⭐
    It's still a little early for me to pose a question like this since I am just about to enter my third year in law school. But I guess, it might pay off if, as early as now, I have some ideas about the existing law firms in the nation.

    Posting a thread like this is sort of indispensable to me if everyone knows my condition: I sleep for very lengthy periods, caused by my medical conditions. The reason why I didn't continue my career as a CPA is this.

    how do you manage to study as law schools demanded if you have to sleep at length? aren't law students suppose to sleep for just about 5 hours a day prior to study?

    anyway, sorry. didn't able to contribute to your query. curious lang ako, incoming law student kasi.
  • neinsagerneinsager PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    vicmesar wrote: »

    and the badest thing:
    pag natalo kaso, ikaw ang haharap sa client and bear all the f'''cking sh'''t. Pag panalo, boss mo ang kakausap and grabbed all the merits (and the CREDITS)

    PLEASE ELABORATE!!!! :rotflmao: share ka naman ng funny/annoying experience na natalo, and the client did not take it well.
  • OO nga share naman ng experience dyan...
  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    details of experiences? mahihirap ito. Remember client-counsel communication privilege. Mahirap ma identify, small world lang naman ang legal practice hehehe

    At any rate, i will offer ABSTRACT.

    Normally, there are two (2) ways to win the case: legal and meta-legal.

    Legal: more or less predictable yan. Mentally, alam na ng counsel at client ang result ng kaso. So, most of the time no blaming game here.

    Meta-legal: Ito ang madugo. Chamber lawyering ito at financed ito ng clients mismo. So, pagtalo pa rin ang kaso, minsan may sigawan, suntukan, and even barilan mismo sa law office - and finally, separation ng mga partners or mass resignation ng lawyers (Yes, Virginia, marami pa rin namang decent lawyers).

    The scandal will eventually spread like a showbiz news among the practitioners, then, lalabas ng blind items sa columns ng daily newspapers.
  • neinsagerneinsager PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    vicmesar wrote: »
    details of experiences? mahihirap ito. Remember client-counsel communication privilege. Mahirap ma identify, small world lang naman ang legal practice hehehe

    At any rate, i will offer ABSTRACT.

    Normally, there are two (2) ways to win the case: legal and meta-legal.

    Legal: more or less predictable yan. Mentally, alam na ng counsel at client ang result ng kaso. So, most of the time no blaming game here.

    Meta-legal: Ito ang madugo. Chamber lawyering ito at financed ito ng clients mismo. So, pagtalo pa rin ang kaso, minsan may sigawan, suntukan, and even barilan mismo sa law office - and finally, separation ng mga partners or mass resignation ng lawyers (Yes, Virginia, marami pa rin namang decent lawyers).

    The scandal will eventually spread like a showbiz news among the practitioners, then, lalabas ng blind items sa columns ng daily newspapers.

    OMG talaga? i thought at most, they'd throw a tantrum. silly me! :lol: well, if the client resorts to "meta-legal" means, i think it's a fair indication that they're desperate.

    it's ok. you don't have to name clients naman or give sufficient details to enable others to identify who you're talking about. ok na rin yang abstract. :lol:

    eh nangyari na ba halimbawa na na-dismiss ang kaso because of some procedural flaw that could have been easily avoided? like for example, it was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction or late filing. kasi feeling ko sobrang nakakahiya kung mangyari yun, as in. and then nai-imagine ko ang sasabihin ng client like "eh diba attorney nag-aral ka ng law? diba dapat marunong ka ng procedure?" goooosh!
  • parkerfly wrote: »
    how do you manage to study as law schools demanded if you have to sleep at length? aren't law students suppose to sleep for just about 5 hours a day prior to study?

    anyway, sorry. didn't able to contribute to your query. curious lang ako, incoming law student kasi.

    i'm probably the law student who sleeps the longest. i sleep for 10-13 hours each night. well, i was able to survive 5 sems in UP Law despite that but I transferred to another school because of the same. So, yeah, in short, it's not a good idea to sleep that long. But if one really desires to become a lawyer, some things are worth sacrificing. So, lately, I trimmed down my sleeping hours to 8 and, so far, I am doing well in my new law school.

    My biggest concern right now is that by the time i am working for a law firm, I might not be able to sleep for that long anymore. Alarm clocks aren't working at all! @[email protected] Well, I guess, if it's really going to be extremely hard to work for a law firm, then I might as well just work in my father's office. My mom (pala) told me he's not able to handle all the cases lately and he's patiently waiting for me. I just don't know if it's a good idea to help my father right after passing the bar though...
  • vicmesar wrote: »
    I cannot speak of small law firm. No experience.

    There is this medium law firm I knew, ang game plan is: Under staff; para malaki ang sideline ng lawyers.

    There's something I might be missing. What do you mean by this?
    Ang work load nila good for 20 lawyers but around 10 to 12 lawyers lang ang opis.

    Effect: midnite din ang uwian; Minsan nga dun pa natutulog ang lawyers, e.g., bukas na deadline ng petition. Pag pasok nila sa opis, check their cars, may kumot, may personal unan sila.

    So the workload is quite huge... But the paycheck is also...? There seems to be no balance between life and ummm... work here. :depressed:

    My ideal law firm is one where there's balance between life and work, experience to be gained is okay, and not too much workload (so I'd have time for other activities especially sleeping! lol.). Amount of salary is preferably anchored on one's performance so that there's some sort of motivation in working. Facilities: not that comfortable so I won't fall asleep while working. A little stress would be good so it won't be boring. Some challenges. Fringe benefits = I want more available leaves! Haha. So yeah, that's it.

    Would it be hard to find a law firm like that?
  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    Yes, so many cases were dismissed based on procedural flaws, e.g., lack of MCLE, failure to properly identify the petitioner, defective verification and certification, no affidavit of service and the likes. However, these procedural lapses could easily be cured by filing Motion for Recon with subsequent compliance thereof.

    Late filing is really serious. More often than not, di yan nadadala sa MR. However, the Rules of Court provides us many ways to go around the bush, e.g., kung prescribed ang appeal, you can resort to special civil actions like certiorari, prohibition, mandamus, declaratory relief, quo warranto as the case maybe - bahala ka na mag justify sa pleadings. Of course, ask for TRO.

    Lahat naman ng practitioners, may share ng kahihiyan. Kaya yang alaskahan sa law school, namnamin mo na kasi its really nothing sa practice hehehe
  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    sexytanned,

    FIRST QUESTION: "There's something I might be missing. What do you mean by this?"

    SECOND QUESTION: "So the workload is quite huge... But the paycheck is also...? There seems to be no balance between life and ummm... work here."


    Its like this: if you have clients, you have many representation allowances caused by hearings and meetings. For instance, if you have trial in Valenzuela, your transportation allowance is P2K; your personal appearance is 5k (you will get 50% of this). You will have a free lunch from your client also. There are times, clients will also give you gift checks - just to express their appreciation.

    Also, there are days that your boss would request you to prioritize the pleading of this particular client; and, your boss will inform the client to give you some bonus (normally 5k to 10k plus afternoon and midnight snacks).

    Moreover, some law firms also give incentives sa mga midnite drafters, e.g., gift checks and sometimes cash 2k to 5k.

    All these, on top of your salary.

    Balancing of life?: None; but if you are going to do this for a year or two, ok lang. Dami ka rin naman matutunan.

    Just protect your self. Take a lot of Vitamins B,C, E, take juices and veggies. Otherwise, para kang walking cadaver after 6 months.

    Your ideal law firm: I think the small law firms; or you work as government employee.

    Goodluck
  • LimpBwiZitLimpBwiZit PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    If you manage your time well, di mo naman kakailanganin magpuyat masyado. Kung terminated na ang presentation of evidence ng defense, start ka nang mag-draft ng memorandum mo. Don't wait for the court's order to file the memo. Ang maipagmamalaki ko sa kaunting time na naglitigate ako, never ako nag-move for extension of time to file pleadings (coz I also file an opposition everytime the opposing counsel files a motion for extension of time). Then kelangan talagang lagi kang handa and magbigay ng time allowance sa mga occasional "surprises" na biglang lolobo ang workload mo, kaya don't assume na kung meron kang sufficient time, yon at yon lang ang gagawin mo talaga for the time left kasi expect mo lagi na biglang may susulpot na gawain (apart from mga needs mo na kelangan mong pagtuunan ng pansin).

    Contracts - template lang yan. Kung kakaibang contract ang pinapagawa sa yo, then it's reasonable naman na bigyan ka ng sufficient time to draft it.

    Balanced life - hindi balanced ang life ko before, mas marami akong time gumimik, not because magaan ang load ko, but because priority ko ang gimik. :lol:

    Walang point lang kasi sa akin yong magkandarapa ka sa trabaho and not find time to enjoy the fruits of your labor :lol:

    I did all my work in advance, para free ako sa weekends, or i sacrificed some of my weekends, para free from worries ako sa upcoming long weekend. I also asked for a flexi-sched coz I don't like to go to work on regular office hours - andaming istorbo, useless small talks, unnecessary breaks, basta, andaming distractions. I like it better kung tuloy-tuloy ang work ko, not yong mararamdaman mo ang mga taong naghahanda for lunch, and you feel like having lunch na rin dahil magla-lunch na sila lahat, or magliligpit to leave, nakakahawa, even of you don't really need to go. Plus, the time wasted on the road pag rush periods.

    There are times na kelangan mo rin talaga magpuyat, pero it's not usual. Actually, depende sa boss mo yan e. Kung minalas kang may boss kang hindi nakikishare sa problems, malas mo. Meron kasing ganun, yong tipong ikaw lang lahat, pipirma na lang sya. Pag palpak, sa yo ang sisi, pag success, kanya ang credit. Pero meron naman okay na boss, yong alam nyang ginawa mo na lahat, then he'll give you a break, he'll take responsibility and sya na bahalang humarap.

    Leveling expectations - wag naman pangakuan ng buwan at bituin ang client. Explain kung ano ang situation and what you need to do to win the case, and how hard it is to do it. Better, get the client involved, share the burden with them, para malaman naman nila kung gaano kahirap yong gusto nilang mangyari. E.g., kung ang kelangan mong evidence sa case ay medyo mahirap ma-obtain, ask the client baka may means sya to obtain the evidence. Or kung witness na kelangan nyo ay cannot be reached or unwilling, share with the client the burden to seek the witness or convince the witness. Emphasize mo rin yong importance ng witness/evidence.

    Then update mo sila lagi kung saan na kayo, what more do you need to prove/disprove, how far are you from winning and kung ano ang posisyon ng kalaban.

    Kung matalo man kayo sa huli, it's not hard to explain.

    If your firm has a policy of non-disclosure of case status (or saying yes to all the client's whims), it's your choice kung tutuloy ka pa dyan sa firm na yan. Unfortunately, karamihan talaga sa firms ay "pinapaasa" ang client.
  • Bale okay po ba na magwork sa big firms, after passing the bar, as a slave for a year or two, just for experience, and then lipat na sa government or small firms?
  • vicmesar wrote: »
    sexytanned,

    FIRST QUESTION: "There's something I might be missing. What do you mean by this?"

    SECOND QUESTION: "So the workload is quite huge... But the paycheck is also...? There seems to be no balance between life and ummm... work here."


    Its like this: if you have clients, you have many representation allowances caused by hearings and meetings. For instance, if you have trial in Valenzuela, your transportation allowance is P2K; your personal appearance is 5k (you will get 50% of this). You will have a free lunch from your client also. There are times, clients will also give you gift checks - just to express their appreciation.

    Also, there are days that your boss would request you to prioritize the pleading of this particular client; and, your boss will inform the client to give you some bonus (normally 5k to 10k plus afternoon and midnight snacks).

    Moreover, some law firms also give incentives sa mga midnite drafters, e.g., gift checks and sometimes cash 2k to 5k.

    All these, on top of your salary.

    Balancing of life?: None; but if you are going to do this for a year or two, ok lang. Dami ka rin naman matutunan.

    Just protect your self. Take a lot of Vitamins B,C, E, take juices and veggies. Otherwise, para kang walking cadaver after 6 months.

    Your ideal law firm: I think the small law firms; or you work as government employee.

    Goodluck

    working for the government? can you provide more details as to which government offices might possibly hire me? never thought of that before...

    i'm still targetting law firms. i somehow want to know how it feels to work as a litigation lawyer...
  • With regard to the larger law firms, what's the compensation like?

    For first year associates?

    4-5 year associates?

    most importantly, for partners? What's the PPP for equity and non-equity partners; also how long does it take to make partner.

    Thanks.
  • vicmesarvicmesar Member PEx Guru 🎖️🎖️
    sexytanned,

    every government office meron legal department. However, the following ang the best: SolGen, Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, RTCs, MTCs, GOCC, SEC, and BIR.



    Frank,

    I'm sorry, I do not know the current rate because these are confidential information.

    I heard though that the entry level is 50K to 60K. Associates with 4-5 years experience, negotiable na usually yan.

    As to partners, no personal knowledge. I'd never been a partner. I worked in a Makati law firm only for a year; went to Judiciary for the next 5 years; then, back to law firm in Pasig for a year; then to judiciary again.

    Now I'd been in an independent consultancy since 2009.
  • Grabe parang mali ang pipiliin kong trabaho ah,
    baka naman meron kayong maishashare na magandang experience dyan
  • LimpBwiZitLimpBwiZit PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    ^yong magandang experience ko ay sa pagre-render ng pro bono services. pinaglalaban mo ang talagang pinaniniwalaan mo, at ramdam mong malaki ang naitutulong mo sa mga helpless na mga tao.

    ibang tuwa rin ang nararamdaman mo na may nagagawa ka para sa iba nang walang nakukuhang kapalit.

    cheesy, pero dito ko nahanap ang "essence" ng lawyering :)
  • LimpBwiZitLimpBwiZit PEx Influencer ⭐⭐⭐
    ^eto rin yong nararamdaman mong mabigat ang responsibility mo, not just as a lawyer, but as a human being.

    kahit di ka na sinisipot ng client, or pasaway sila, pinagpapasensyahan mo pa rin kahit hindi ka kumikita sa ginagawa mo, dahil alam mong kaya sila ganun ay dahil kulang sila sa pinag-aralan at hindi nila naiintindihan ang kinasangkutan nila, and you feel the duty to educate them.

    it also gives you hope na someday, kung umasenso sa buhay ang mga taong ito, gagawa din sila ng kabutihan sa ibang taong nangangailangan.
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