Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Employment in the First Year?

Hi helpful folks..... in a recent comment someone asked:

"perhaps you have already encountered a dilemma I have. I know that 1L's are prohibited from discussing employment until after Dec. 1st, but my current boss wants to introduce me to some attornies in our field. Can I talk to them to network without providing a resume or discussing possible summer employment (which, ostensibly, is why I AM actually talking with them)?"

I wondered if anyone else had an answer for her?

My understanding was that first year law students (other then part timers, who are allowed to work and usually do) were not allowed to work, but I am not aware of any rules regarding simply networking with people you already know. I mean if your boss wants to introduce you to some contacts for possible hire the summer after the first year, that isn't exactly like making an employment decision.

Is the rule against discussing employment only to prevent the career center from sending first year students on interviews and the such?

Weigh in if you know more then me :)


Blogger the default attorney said...

Wow, no clue. Is this a school specific rule? I've heard of schools not allowing first years to work, but forbidding "discussing employment?" How do you enforce that?

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"

"I'm sorry, I'm not at liberty to discuss my future employment plans."

Don't listen to me, but I would take any networking opportunity that gets thrown your way.

9:59 AM  
Blogger bettyjoan said...

I would advise all law students to familiarize themselves with the NALP guidelines, specifically the "General Standards for the Timing of Offers and Decisions." The section on 1L summer employment states:

"1. Law schools should not offer career services to first-semester first year law students prior to November 1 except in the case of part-time students who may be given assistance in seeking positions during the school term.

2. Prospective employers and first year law students should not initiate contact with one another and employers should not interview or make offers to first year students before December 1.

3. All offers to first year students for summer employment should remain open for at least two weeks after the date made."

I don't interpret #2 as prohibiting general networking, but if the commenter has concerns, I'd suggest calling someone at NALP and getting feedback. Also, since it's July and school hasn't started yet, is he/she technically a 1L? The timing confuses me a little.

Not to sound snarky, but I'd also recommend that he/she learn that the plural of "attorney" is "attorneys"! :-)

10:13 AM  
Blogger Rick Lax said...

i don't know the answer, but it definitely sounds like the type of thing you'll want to find out for sure before you start doing anything.

8:33 PM  

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