Job Outsourcing: What Does it Mean for the Legal Profession?

"Outsourcing" is not a term with which I am particularly familiar. The word is tossed around as something that takes jobs away from Americans, as companies take advantage of cheap labor prices in other countries. I have always associated this phenomenon with industries such as computer technology and automotive manufacturing. When I heard of law firms practicing outsourcing, I was baffled to say the least. And the most intriguing fact is that this technique is not a new development.

After finding an article in the New York Times 2010 archive reporting on legal outsourcing, I was curious to know just how long this practice has been in use. It turns out, the earliest occurrence of legal outsourcing dates back to the mid-nineties. Considering all the backlash industrial outsourcing has received, it is surprising to see that legal outsourcing has not only stayed, but actually has grown. For the firms there is a practical and economical reason for sending certain jobs overseas and it is the same reason that drives many other industries abroad--labor is cheaper. Why spend 200 dollars an hour for an employee performing basic research when you can spend half that abroad? Or, as the website CPA Global puts it, "when [lawyers] are free to focus on the big things, they can produce even greater results." CPA Global posits that with the removal of menial tasks, lawyers can truly work to the best of their ability. This sounds like a good thing. Who doesn't want their lawyer to have a clear mind when the time comes for trial? But as an undergraduate, this is not good news. Many of the jobs that are sent to countries like India are those that normally go to entry-level lawyers and law students just getting their feet wet. This is sadly just more bad news to consider along with the decline in jobs for law school graduates. How is a student supposed to find work when that work is suddenly being shipped elsewhere? Well, there really isn't cause to worry, yet.

Legal outsourcing is still a rather small niche. But some very good advice can be found in an article posted by Merrick Pastore in April on LawSpaceMatch.com. The article impresses upon all up-and-coming lawyers the importance of networking. When a firm hires a lawyer from another country, they are a faceless and possibly nameless being. An American law student on the other hand certainly doesn't have to be. Networking allows employers to see potential and gauge drive of legal hopefuls. By showing a little tenacity, it is possible to convince others that you are worth the greater paycheck. Sources: http://www.cpaglobal.com/legal_services_outsourcing/ http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/05/business/global/05legal.html?pagewanted=2 Contributed By: Meg R. DeFrancesco See Also: The Pre-Law Outlook, Advice on Summer Jobs: Both for Now and in the Future, Should I Stay in School? Just Look at the Unemployment Rate

I Need a Job!

"I see all this potential, and I see squandering. . . . [D]amn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables--slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy stuff we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression.

Our Great War's a spiritual war . . . our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off." --"Tyler Durden," 1999* "Welcome to Fight Club. The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: you DO NOT talk about Fight Club!" I had to say that for the Fight Club fans (great movie). Anyway, I've been job hunting for about four months now (procrastinators don't get the jobs folks), and the above quote came to mind after I spent this past weekend brooding over the terrible job economy once again. I may not share the same views as Brad Pitt's character (or was it technically Edward Norton's character), but I'm definitely on edge about the bleak job market for attorneys. Ok. Perhaps I'm jumping the shark, being overly dramatic, or simply being pessimistic, but my job hunt doesn't seem to be producing a whole lot at the current time. It can quickly turn into a depressing subject when you see other law students around you already getting jobs. Tack on the great job expectation that Law Review puts on your shoulders (that's right, yours truly is the Managing Editor of the school law review), and the lack of a job becomes even more of a burden.

Sometimes you can't help but feel like you're failing when you've worked so hard and have nothing to show for it. Don't get me wrong, I haven't given up hope or thrown in the towel. I'm still looking, and I know that more opportunities will become available the closer it gets to graduation. Still, there will constantly be this nagging voice in my head telling me that I should have a job by now, that I should be doing more to find a job, and that I need to work harder. I'll continue the job search, and I won't give up.

But, it would be nice to see some sign of potential job security in the near future. Or I may need to find law office space and think about going solo. *Fight Club (1999), available at http://www.imdb.com/title/ tt0137523/ quotes (last visited November 10, 2010). Contributed by Jody Sellers, a current 3L law student, who between his limited free time, writes reflective blogs offering insight into the law school experience.

Mr. Mom & The Future Attorney

Contributed by: Natalie Lynn Fears

What exactly does it mean to be a wife, and eventually a mother, while also trying to finish first in the game of law school? At first, for me, it meant takeout, piles of dirty laundry, and an unmade bed five days a week. As a newlywed, and a second year law student, it is no doubt that balancing the role of a loving wife with being a diligent student is exhausting. Many sleep deprived nights, and five extra pounds later, I began to find a balance.

The thing about being a law student that is so gripping is the sense of purpose received after pushing through intellectual challenges. The only problem with having my head in a book hours on end daily is the nudging feeling that there may be something outside the text books that's missing. One Friday afternoon, and three baby shower invitations later, I found myself wondering if my husband and I would ever have time for children of our own. While the newly married couples around us were settling into new homes and expanding their families, my husband and I found ourselves climbing the professional ladder.

As a recent business graduate from Georgia Southern University, my husband was working two jobs and desperately trying to find a break in this unforgiving economy. Finding a minute to ourselves, without one of us falling asleep before 9 p.m., had become more challenging than the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. When finals and my second appellate brief were completed, I embarked on the coveted Christmas break. This meant four weeks of rest and relaxation. My biggest worry was finding a Christmas gift for my new in-laws. This hiatus gave me time to reflect on things in life outside law school. After being trained for almost two years to think and write in I.R.A.C. formation, this hypothetical consumed my brain: How could an over achieving law student, married to a double major business whiz, find time to start and raise a family. And then, I had the greatest epiphany of all: I. Issue: What if my husband could be a stay at home dad? And for that matter, how many female attorneys had husbands playing the role of Mr. Mom? R. Rule:

a. Traditional, Common Law Rule: Women should be confined to the home.
b. Proposed Rule for Adoption: Men can elect to stay at home with the children while women fulfill themselves professionally.

A. Analysis: I wondered how many career driven females, especially in the legal field, existed. Were there others like me who had a strong desire to fulfill themselves professionally, but still longed for a family of their own? And then it happened. A fellow peer of mine had a cesarean section the day after our fall semester finals were complete. She shared with me that when she returned to school, her husband would take care of the baby, all day, by himself. She expressed her concern over someone other than a biological parent being her baby's caretaker during those crucial first months. That day I realized that I had a committed partner, whom I considered my equal too. And, if after 3 years of intense legal training, I wanted to climb my way to partner of a private firm, there could still be a parent at home to raise our children. I wondered if I would feel selfish for sacrificing that precious time that so many stay at home moms covet. And then I realized this: Being a working mom gives you the ability to provide for your family in invaluable ways. And the best part is, when you tell your child, especially your little girl that she can be whatever she wants to be, you can say it with a vindication. C. Conclusion: The truth is some men are secure in their role as stay at home dads, and some never will be. My fellow law student was fortunate enough to marry a man that would put his career on the back-burner while she pursued hers. Many men still prefer to be the bread winner of the family, but fortunately there is a growing trend of men who will stay home with the kids for us women who want to pursue a fulfilling legal career.

 

Race, Racism, & The Law Memorandum

Impact of Ricci regarding reverse discrimination in the workplace

INTRODUCTION The Ricci case had earned much notoriety as a result of Justice Sotomayor's senate confirmation hearings during the summer of 2009. Members of our legislature opposing her nomination, for whatever reasons they, continually focused on her role in this decision prior to its appeal to our nation's highest court. I remember intently watching the confirmation hearings, hearing Justice Sotomayor being grilled from members of the senate committee solely on the topic. It was not until I began researching this case for the purposes of this memorandum that I learned that Justice Sotomayor did not write an opinion to this case at all, but merely signed an order affirming summary judgment. Ricci v. DeStefano, 264 Fed.Appx. 106 (2d Cir. 2008).

There was a very brief opinion attached to the order. The short text that was given explained that the firefighters did not have a viable Title VII claim; and the Board acted lawfully in refusing to validate the exams to satisfy Title VII requirements when faced with results with a showing of disproportionate racial impact. Id. Subsequent to the order, an active judge of the Court requested a poll on whether to rehear the case in banc. Ricci v. DeStefano, 530 F.3d 88 (2d Cir. 2008). The Second Circuit of Appeals in a 7-6 vote, withdrew their order affirming, and instead issued a per curiam order. Id. Then Judge Sotomayor concurred with Judge Katzmann and Judge Parker in their opinions to decline an en banc rehearing of Ricci. But because of the continuous opposition against Justice Sotomayor during the confirmation hearings on this decision, in addition to the press' nonstop reporting on this attack, my interest in the developments of Ricci was certainly incited. Racism in American society stemming from the time of slavery still exists to a varying degree. Though slavery is of course no longer an issue; prejudice, intolerance, and bigotry continues to inject itself into culture whether those who are realize it or not. To combat this, Congress enacted The Civil Rights Act of 1964 that outlawed discrimination and ended racial segregation in America.

Contributed by: Andrew Thomas Smith In Ricci v. DeStefano, the principle case in this memorandum, the Supreme Court particularly examines an aspect of Title VII of the Act; which prohibits discrimination by covered employers on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. But interestingly enough, legislation that was passed to prevent discrimination of minorities in the workplace, has become the means to prevent discrimination of non-minorities. Discrimination has grown to become a complex entity in itself. Reverse discrimination and affirmative action programs have become the source of much controversy in cases involving inequality in the workplace; and we see the source of ire in the principle case stems from it. Reverse discrimination is: 1) a concept of prejudice directed; 2) against members of certain social or racial groups, as white persons; 3) thought of as being dominant or having benefited from past discrimination against minority groups who are now favored. These are often as a result of (and most commonly associated with) affirmative action programs; the policies that take factors including "race, color, religion, sex or national origin" into consideration in order to benefit an underrepresented group, usually as a means to counter the effects of a history of discrimination..

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964 TITLE VII Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 has been used to both defend and oppose reverse discrimination decisions by employers. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was the subject of the longest Congressional filibuster in history, and until this day it continues to hold that record. Crain, Kim, Selmi, Work Law: Cases and Materials 536 (2006 Lexis/Nexis). Prior to the enactment of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, it was legal for employers to discriminate on the basis of race, sex, national origin, and religion. Id. But the bottom line principle of Title VII is found in section 703(a)(1): "It shall be an unlawful practice for an employer ... to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual or otherwise discriminate against any individual... because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." 42 U.S.C.

Reasons To Work During Law School - A 3L's Personal Reflection

Working throughout law school has been an amazing and unique experience. I can honestly say that my life would not have been the same without having had the opportunity to experience the law in a real-world, work environment. My experience has given me an opportunity that many law students might not have, and I'm thankful for that opportunity. Although it was often difficult to manage my work schedule with my class schedule, making me question my decision to pursue both school and a job at the same time, I was afforded the chance to analyze the court room environment, experience the goings-on of a law office, and strengthen my legal research and writing skills, while my classmates were seeing the law from the confines of the classroom.

A. Job Interviews: Work Experience Made the Difference Prior to the 2010 summer, I had the overwhelming privilege of receiving multiple summer job offers from both sides of the criminal justice system, and I owe it all to working during law school. Before coming to law school, it was my dream to be a public defender so that I could help others (pardon the clich

Categories