Sunday, December 6, 2015

Law School Admissions Council Cockroaches Take Offense to LST Publishing Studies and Statistics Showing That Law Schools Are Admitting Dunces

LST’s Report: Recently, Law School Transparency published an excellent study – backed up with charts, graphs, figures, and rock solid analysis – that was entitled “2015 State of Legal Education.” Here is the general overview of that report:

“A problem for our profession and society

Law school enrollment is the lowest it's been since the 1960's. To remain financially viable, many law schools are admitting many people who face real risk of not completing school or of failing the bar. The bargain is clear: take larger, riskier classes now to survive and deal with the accreditation challenges, angry alumni, and bad press that follow later. 

But at what cost, and to whom? And should we collectively enable this bargain? 

We need lawyers. Yet too many schools hoping to produce the next generation of lawyers are failing the profession and society today—not to mention the students they're setting up to fail. To reinvigorate the law school pipeline, we must address the substantive issues that drive prospective law students away from the legal profession. We must ensure that law schools make responsible enrollment choices and become more affordable.” [Emphasis in original]

Since a profession is supposed to care about its practitioners, future members, potential clients or patients, and society – as well as maintaining and enhancing its reputation – who could be upset with an organization that, at its own expense, has furnished such data and provided pragmatic solutions? Then again, we are talking about the law school swine.

The Pigs Respond: LSAC “president” David Bernstine provided this reply, in his letter “Why LSAT Scores Should Not Be Used to Label Law Schools and Their Students” – On December 1, 2015. From his opening:

“A report recently released by Law School Transparency (LST) has gained headlines by claiming that some ABA-approved law schools have been intentionally admitting “high risk” students who, based on their LSAT scores, do not have a reasonable chance of passing the bar. As explained below, this claim and others made by the LST study are based on misunderstandings of the LSAT. 

The LSAT is a valid measure of certain cognitive skills that are important for success in law school. However, proper use of the test does not include using score ranges to label law schools and their students as to their potential for successful bar passage.

In addition to the fact that the recommendations in the LST report run counter to LSAC’s testuse guidelines, we are concerned about the methodological errors upon which the report is based, and the misleading media coverage that this flawed report has generated.” [Emphasis mine]

By his “logic,” college quarterbacks being assessed for their ability to play and succeed in the NFL should not be judged on whether they can complete difficult passes in tight coverage or whether they can remain calm and perform at a high level in critical situations. After all, there are so many other factors and intangibles. Apparently, David Bernstine has difficulty with reading and statistics.

McEntee Replies: The Faculty Lounge posted his well-written retort, “Law School Transparency (LST) Responds to Law School Admission Council (LSAC) Press Release” – on December 2, 2015. Check out the meaty portion below:

“In recent weeks, several deans at high-risk schools have made comments in the media suggesting that there is no correlation between LSAT scores and bar passage at their law school, but none have provided data to support their assertions. The most clearly false claim came from Dean Penelope Bryan at Whittier Law School. She told the Los Angeles Times that “[t]he LSAT score has no predictive value for the success of Whittier Law School students on the bar exam.” Incidentally, Whittier’s first time bar pass rate in California dropped from 64.7% in July 2013, , to 42.7% in July 2014 to 30% in February 2015. (Note - Whittier had only 10 first time test-takers for that administration; California's July 2015 results by school are not yet available, but the statewide results were lower.) 

At the same time, Whittier’s entering class profile progressively weakened. In 2014, over half of the entering class at Whittier was at 146 or below on the LSAT. To Whittier’s credit, the school dramatically shrank their first year entering class in 2015, substantially raising the LSAT profile of the bottom half of the class, with the 50th percentile increasing from 146 to 148 and the 25th percentile increasing from 143 to 146. Clearly, Whittier has recognized that LSAT scores do matter, even if Dean Bryan won’t publicly admit it.” [Emphasis mine]

According to the Orange County Register, the American Bar Association placed Whittier Law Sewer on academic probation in 2005 due to pathetically low bar passage rates. The fact that the ABA continues to accredit such dung heaps shows that they don’t give a damn about students or recent graduates. It also speaks volumes about the organization.

Conclusion: In the final analysis, the LSAC rats are in the same boat as “law professors” and deans. They need more asses in seats, in order to keep their plush, easy jobs. They know that the media coverage of the drop in numbers of test-takers, decline in the quality of applicants, and the resultant plunge in bar passage rates has cast the ABA-accredited toilets in a bad light. The bitches and hags will do and say anything, to stanch the bleeding. Simply put, the schools want to be able to admit morons who can barely read at an 11th grade level – and they don’t want anyone to point that out to others. The Law $chool Admi$$ion Council is in leagie with the pigs. However, this is still “the noble profession,” right?


  1. The nice thing about these dunces coming on line is that some of them get hired by the Prosecutor's office. From a defense lawyer perspective, this is golden. I get to look like a HERO to my client and that can generate fees. It will also be nice if State Farm gets stuck with idiots defending liability matters.

    Me: Hi, how about if we just settle this soft tissue low speed car crash for only $3.0 million? It will save time and you don't have to write, research and present a summary judgement motion. Everybody goes home happy!

    Dunce Counsel: That sounds great. Thank you counsel. You just saved my butt. I don't care anyway, cause its not my money.

    1. Unfortunately, State Farm has now become extremely difficult to settle cases with . . . worse than I have ever seen it in 30 years of practice. Oftentimes, they are not paying anything close to even outstanding medicals. And they do this to me . . . and I try cases . . but they gamble jurors . . who hate trial lawyers . . along with their paid prostitute medical people will save the day for them.

      I attribute this to two things: (1) In State Farm's case, it fired many of its long time adjusters (so much for loyalty) and hired people out of school who are even dumber than the dumbest law school applicants and completely brainwashed them to believe all injured plaintiffs are frauds and (2) they are doing this to make it economically nonviable for the huge advertising firms to remain in business . . . or they are forcing these firms to settle ever cheaper because their business model does not allow for litigation. They sign up so many cases and have relatively so few attorneys that litigation is impossible in all but their best cases.

    2. Hmmm...the practice of law is different everywhere, but where I practice these guys don't pass the bar. The DA's office now has people from "name" schools, unlike years ago when they hired State U grads like myself.

    3. State farm stinks. Ex policy holder. They made it impossible to get money that a parent was entitled to. Switched to Allstate.

  2. A similarly bogus defense of the Legal Education Industrial Complex can be found at, where Sheldon Bernard Lyke (another employee of Whittier) attempts to muddy the water with respect to LSAT and bar passage. Despite the voluminous evidence that Whittier is detrimental to students who attend hoping to pass the bar and become attorneys, Lyke attempts an attack on Law School Transparency that can only be described as jaw-droppingly poor.

    Despite clear correlation between (1) schools with low bar passage rate and (2) schools that admit any applicant able to mutter "Sallie Mae," Lyke blathers on with non-sensical defenses.

    These defenses are eerily similar to logical fallacies that the LSAT would provide as wrong answers to a logical reasoning question "Which factor is MOST likely to lead to a FT/LT legal position? (a) the student is from "a group at the margin of society," (b) the student attends a law school with an LST score of approximately 25%, (c) LSAT has a .30 statistical correlation to bar passage, or (d) the student attends a school with a competitive admissions process"--the sorts of fallacies that Whittier matriculants may not analyze critically.

    Where I come from this isn't called "puffery," this is called "exploitation."

    Spoiler alert: He get his pithy "but...but...but 'under served communities' and 'margins of society'" and other tenuous arguments crushed by the commenters. The arguments were destroyed so badly that the author is presumably too ashamed to even try to defend the garbage that he wrote--even despite David Frakt writing a follow-on piece inviting any defence of the original scam-defending article.

    1. Us neighborhood and small firm lawyers have represented the UNDERSERVED and marginal folks for decades. And I enjoyed that work until it recently dried up too. We will not represent folks who are defiant refusing to pay anything. I know many guys who will go to court for $100 or the bond on a minor matter. That barely covers gas. The law deans and academics don't understand this because they have no idea what takes place in a real courtroom. No, I will not take an Armed Violence matter for $100. And even graduating ultra idealistic dreamers with diverse backgrounds and 150K in debt will likely elicit the same response.

    2. So true. Until those that are running the show know what it's really like out there, nothing will change.

    3. I learned that long, long ago. The sense of entitlement of the poor to free lawyers. I don't mind representing people who are truly being scammed by the system . . . but I will not represent somebody who is responsible for their own predicament. Once a guy elected to drive without liability insurance and then requested I defend him . . . for free, because he had no insurance. From my perspective, if you don't have the assets to warrant liability insurance . . . you are on you own. I represented a woman in a claim I filed in Federal Court when her disability was denied. I won the case . . but never got a thankyou. Instead, the attitude was what could I do for her now.

    4. 11:58 is exactly right-the law school deans/profs have no idea what it is like to actually practice law, and the big change of the past decade or so is that nobody wants to pay for legal services, period.

    5. For $100, expect to be represented by a mouth-breathing idiot.

      Of course, even at a thousand times that price one could still be represented by a mouth-breathing idiot. But at $100 that outcome is all but guaranteed.

  3. *sigh*

    Law schools also like to argue that it doesn't matter if you fail your first bar exam, because many of these people eventually pass the bar exam after multiple tries.

    The problem is that unless you are already employed by a very forgiving law firm, most employers will not put up with an employee who is hired to be a lawyer who fails the bar more then once. They expect you to pass the bar immediately on the next try, and will probably let you go, upon a second failure.

    However, if you were not hired by a firm right out of law school, then any delay in bar admission will immediately cripple your ability to make it as a solo, especially as other new members of the bar are admitted as the next class graduates.

    Kids, if you get a 142 LSAT score, the chances of you passing the bar on your first try are not probably in your favor, you should probably find another career.

    1. If you haven't been hired by a decent law firm on graduation it's unlikely you'll ever get a decent job in the legal field, bar passage or no.

      Bar passage isn't looked on as some sort of credential that makes you marketable or desirable. It's a base accreditation that is expected and is a disqualified if you don't have it.

      Unless you went to a top school, nobody wants to hire you bar or no. That's why most of these schools need to be closed down, they are worthless. The only reason they exist is because of federal student loan money and also so the elite connected few can attend a school in an area they want to spend 3 years in before working the jobs they're already guaranteed before entering law school in the first place.

      If you aren't rich, then military or Peace corps are your best bet if you're not smart enough to get into an elite academic institution. And honestly even if you do get into an elite academic institution, odds still are bad. I know Harvard MBAs that are struggling.

    2. You are absolutely correct. I know of a retired general counsel at an oil major who recently advised his grandson, who did not get into an elite undergrad college, to learn a trade and then start a small business. I feel sorry for kids who do not have connected and/or well informed family to mentor them.

    3. The above 2 posts are entirely correct. I only would add 1 caveat: The degree is actually much worse than useless because of the tremendous debt that remains afterwards.

      I wanted to also give a shout out to the poster who in previous entries talked about the NYC garbage man.. Excuse me, "sanitation engineer".. who cleared 175k this year. That entry and comment is here, btw:

      I thought more about what he wrote. I thought that eventually the model of being a city/muni/State employee will fail - and it probably will at some point because you can't have more civil service "takers" vs. private industry "makers" but then, when I thought about it even more, realized that all economic climates and systems change and break down eventually.

      What matters is that people like the NYC garbage man and the kid who's in line for that same deal and took the sanitation test DIDN'T spend any MONEY or go into any DEBT.

      So what if you don't make it in to the city, county, state, etc. It cost you virtually nothing except an exam fee unlike law and college where you've blown 7 years of your life and God knows what in expenses, lost opportunity costs, non-dischargeable student loan debt, etc. before you even reach the starting blocks.

      And as said above, unless that college and law school were "elite", NO ONE wants to hire you. Demand is negative for these grads and the jobs are simply not there for all of them in a field where 1 of 3 will find work. The jobs that are there for the unconnected do not justify the time, expense, or debt.

      Losing game..

      And he's right again about those people having union and political protection. Just like police, teachers, etc.

      A lawyer or doctor? You're the "Enemy". You make too much money.. You must be crushed.

      These people are screwing the System like police and teachers in their own way. They're the ones hooked in whereas the schlubs in the private sector get aged out or kicked out as most fall down the career ladder.

      The companies get corporate welfare anyway but still refuse to pay or invest long-term in their people. No one cares. Meanwhile, the ill-educated trash guy with maybe his GED is laughing all the way to the bank..

      He's getting taken care of by the System like police and teachers. And if you're not beating the System, it's beating you like with JD's and college graduates, 50% of whom can't afford to live on their own.

      The dude is right. These people will do well until the model breaks but the main point is that it cost them nothing up front where the scam of college and higher Ed pushes you to blow 7 years and then.. Oooops! non-PPC, you're fucked.. Sorry, Joke's on You.

      So shout out to that poster because he's a freaking genius and totally correct.

    4. I am sending my two daughters to our State Universities and I have zero regrets about doing so. The Tuition is minimal compared to Private Universities. Will they get jobs from their degrees? Maybe, maybe not, but the way I see it, going to a University away from home for a few years is a great way for a child to grow up and open their mind. The college educated have many things over the non-college educated including a superior ability to critically think. That is why Demagogues like Trump are supported more favorably by the non-educated than the educated. Besides that, working as a Sanitation Engineer can not be a satisfying job no matter how much money is made. So yea, education costs money and time . . . but time and money well spent imho. Caveat, this has nothing to do with going to law school or the debt incurred, although personally when I went to Law School, I loved it and felt like it made me a much more aware person. That was years ago when law school did not cost an arm and a leg though. I don't get the waste of three years argument. You have to spend three years somewhere . . . why not law school if it is inexpensive? Of course its not, so that's another issue.

  4. So the LSAC is arguing the LSAT is only very weakly correlated with bar passage (which is a very important part of being a lawyer).

    Are these clowns trying to put themselves out of business? You know the ABA might just decide having prospective law students do stupid ass word games is unnecessary, if these test are so weakly correlated with being a successful lawyer.

  5. The ABA's Barry Currier has joined the LSAC's Bernstine (and many lower-tier law school deans) in minimizing the significance of declining LSAT scores for law school matriculates. Currier also minimized law school responsibility for the plight of recent grads. No surprise that this former Dean of two lousy law schools would turn scam apologist, but still a little disappointing.

    "Barry Currier, managing director of accreditation and legal education at the ABA. . . .said the LSAT was not a good way of determining whether a student would pass the bar, and said some of the criticism of schools fails to account for changes in the job market for law school graduates.

    "We're letting our concerns about employment and the job market, over which law schools have no control, drive too much of this conversation," he said."

    1. Then tell students that. You have no control over the job market and law school is a roll of the dice. Twenty five years ago I expected a middle class career for my financial, time and emotional investment. Reasonably, expectations remain the same.

    2. If the LSAT has so little bearing on outcomes, why is it required?

      It's easy to complain that "some of the criticism of schools fails to take account for changes in the job market for law school graduates". But don't those changes imply that law schools themselves should change—perhaps by shutting down? Or do "our concerns about employment and the job market" count for nothing?

  6. Nando, with both houses of Congress now controlled by Republicans, many of whom are highly critical of the left-wing professoriate dominating most law schools, I think it is time to make the case to Congress that legal education is in the toilet. Time to call for a hearing about the coming debt bomb and ask why Aunt Sally and Uncle Sam keep feeding it instead of demanding reform. Old Ruster from JDJ.

  7. Nando, Seeing that both houses of Congress are controlled by Republicans, many of whom avidly dislike the left-wing professoriate that run most law schools, it is time to take the case of the law school scam to Congress. Time to demand hearings about why Uncle Sam and Aunt Sally keep feeding the menacing student debt bomb instead of seeking relief and reform. (We know the Democrats aren't keen on choking off the flood of $$ to one of their favorite constituencies.)

  8. There's only 20,000 or so lawyer jobs each year. (most of that is from attrition, not actual growth.) And most of those are low paid shit jobs. Last I checked there was something like 4,000 biglaw jobs each year. If you didn't go to a top 10 school, you're not getting one of 'em. If you took out $130K or more for a shit law degree, you're the definition of sucker. You're the kind of guy who takes back his girlfriend after she fucked another man. No, correction. You're the kind of desperate fool who takes back his girlfriend after she fucked another dude and got pregnant with his child and marries her. Fucking chump.

    1. There's maybe, maybe, 8000 decent career jobs a year. That's combining Big Law with the Federal Government, State governments, Fortune 500 companies, Banks, the Big 4 accounting firms and the occasional decent law firm or other job not covered in those categories.

      Of those 8000 at best positions, how many are actually open for competition?

      Maybe 1000 total? The other 7000 spots are going to the connected who aren't really competing with you for those jobs, they're "competing" with each other but all will work at one of these good jobs running the same circles, just swapping around who works for who to avoid charges of nepotism by anyone that even dares make a fuss.

      Even HYS if you're unconnected is a sucker's bet. You'll make enough to pay off the loans maybe, pay a ton in taxes, and within 5 years after destroying your body and nerves you'll be out the door, unlikely to work again in law or get that salary again.

      I still have friends in Big Law now, all are counting the days until they're let go. My friends are smart though, they're investing wisely and spending virtually none of it. And yet they still hate it.

    2. Everyone should read what 7:37 wrote. There are few decent jobs in law, many of them won't last more than a few years, AND, CRUCIALLY, most of them are the private reserve of the Lucky Sperm Club. Bob from Paducah, Mary from Bozeman, you can forget about landing one of those jobs, even if you excel at HYS.

  9. The average person now realizes that most lawyers are not wealthy and that they are out chasing a buck. The poor masses figured it out when their lawyers were doing their cases for $500. You don't have to be a genius to figure this shit out.

  10. I enjoy reading the wisdom of The "Old Guy." Old Guy's comments are probably true.

    I wish that the Old Guy would elaborate more on how tough it is to practice on your own.

    You are responsible for everything (e.g. computers, printers, software, supplies, and so on). That means that if your printer breaks (or runs out of toner), then you have to handle it. Those appear to be minor and easy things to handle. But add those tasks to finding an office (office space is at a premium), and your workload quickly becomes almost insurmountable. You have to work long hours, probably every day.

    Also, related to being a solo practitioner, clients are becoming more scrupulous. For example, now more than ever, clients will attempt to get all the information and work out of you without paying anything.

    Also, many clients think that they are paying way too much when you charge them a nominal fee.

    Remember that your analysis of the situation is a good part of what the "clients" are suppose to pay you for.

    From what I have seen, unless you inherit the practice (with clients) from a relative, you will probably not make it profitable during your lifetime.

    Most successful attorneys that I have seen working independently inherited their practices from their fathers.

    The legal degree does give you a few strong skills (i.e. speaking, writing, and thinking). It is hard to make a profit to pay off your bills and live comfortably.

    1. As 40 years a solo, you are precisely right, except that you can build a profitable practice (at least with late 1970's debt), but you will work 70 hours or more a week for 2 decades, few to no vacations (no time, no money, no energy), and you will do all the things you mention, for little happens unless you learn how to do it, and then go do it.

    2. Thanks for your kind comments. You're quite right about the difficulty of practicing on one's own. I mentioned that a couple of days ago at Outside the Law School Scam.

      Running an office costs a lot of money, even if done on the cheap. Most recent graduates probably don't have access to the capital needed to set up even a shabby little office.

      A sole practitioner has to attend to everything: accounting, collection, filing, typing, cleaning, and above all marketing. Hiring people to attend to those tasks costs a great deal of money. And don't forget about insurance (several kinds), self-employment taxes, and advertising (a few tens of thousands of dollars per year won't get you very much). Those databases that you could use free of charge in law school cost many hundreds of dollars per month for a restricted subscription.

      Even many experienced sole practitioners cannot find enough work. Upstarts cannot expect to do better.

      Run some calculations, and you'll see that a new sole practitioner will struggle to clear even $20k, never mind the sort of income needed to buy exotic cars or even repay student loans.

      The one point on which I disagree with 10:14 is the claim that law school gives people good skills in speaking, writing, and thinking. Most of the relatively few people who come out of law schools with those skills already had them when they went in.

    3. Agree, already had those skills, or the ability or the ability to develop them. MANY, many lawyers can't even see that they don't have those skills, much make an effort to develop them, and at 50 or 60, are simply unskilled.
      40 yr solo

  11. It's difficult to see what value the lsat has if it doesn't predict success on the bar and schools can admit people in the 30-40 percentile of test takers. It sounds like the lsac is just arguing itself out of business. If we can't agree that bottom half test takers are unqualified for admission and it doesn't predict success what purpose does it serve? The lsac guy says it test cognitive abilities for law school but shouldn't that mean at least that those beneath a certain percentile do not have the cognitive skills to succeed in law school? Seems like the schools should just increase the cost of applying by the amount that it costs to take the lsat and dump lsat as a requirement.

    1. Oh, the schools are going far lower than the 30th percentile. People at the FIRST percentile get in.

  12. Part 1:

    “law is just flooded?”

    Good question. (asked by a previous Nando post commentator)

    One aspect is that you do not need an expensive lab/hospital to have a law school. A law library really is unnecessary too, other than the ABA requires one. Law students use virtually nothing in the law library.

    Law schools only need classrooms, like junior colleges though barber colleges need fancy chairs, and scissors. Same for accounting, accounting is HARD and not a place of refuge for the mentally weak. The law is a refuge.

    Other professions are much more demanding and difficult.

    Everyone thinks being a lawyer places you in the same category as a doctor. (I discuss that below.)

    The breadth of the scam is awesome.

    Children seduced by the prestige of a 3 year professional degree-and XYZ Law School "wants" ME! Hooray!

    Everybody I know is happy or pleased that I earned a law degree-all with an approving smile and nod-except me. It has ruined my life-and I have made a decent living at it, and am really good at what I do. But, the hours are long, the stress is tremendous, and the money not anywhere close to what other fields pay for the same intellectual ability, time expenditure, stress, and responsibility. I would probably be earning 3 to 4 times my law practice income in a major corporation with a STEM degree.

    (A neighbor’s child, with a B.S. degree is in Hawaii for 10 days on business, 40 years younger than me. My law practice covers an 8 mile commute from home to my office. It always has. Period.)

  13. Part 2:

    0L's are not "sophisticated consumers." They are children. And the law schools are simply stealing from them by charging way too much for a degree that is statistically growing more difficult to convert into a law license, and even when that effort is successful, there are no jobs.

    Can you image 40% of medical students NOT passing a licensing exam?

    It is a scandal of monumental proportion that law schools have ratcheted up the tuition to astronomical heights, NOT taught their students how to practice law (surgeons DO learn how to CUT in medical school AND thank God they do, so is there shame, law schools, in teaching law students HOW to practice law?), and permitted non, or never, practitioners to teach. Law schools do not employ professors who have ever practiced law at any level, much less at the level the majority of their students will end up practicing.

    In my state, the land grant university charges MORE tuition to attend its law school than its medical school! And do employment outcomes justify THAT???

    My son, about 2 years from becoming an attending physician as a radiologist, read a job description for an entry level radiologist position to me several months ago: “Starting salary: $320,000, minimum of 8 weeks paid vacation, full benefits.” With 40 years of solo under my belt, I am lucky to make $100,000, and I have NO vacation and NO benefits. I pay those benefits to myself from my $100,000. (26 weeks of vacation in 40 years of work-so extravagant, huh?)

    Every teacher, lecturer, local practitioner involved in my son’s medical education actually practices medicine.

    I graduated from law school in 5 semesters with 2 courses during the summer. I was admitted to law school on the Friday before classes started, from the waiting list and figure I was the last student admitted academically to my class. I graduated at 24.??? Percent, barely top quarter, but 75% better than the last place at which I was admitted. My state’s bar exam was 2 days, 4 sessions. I took half the time for each session, answered the questions, put my pencil down, and was the first to leave the examination room all 4 sessions. I passed.

  14. Part 3

    I am no genius-I KNOW true geniuses-so much smarter than me and all of us (my roommate in undergrad took about 10 pages of notes for all 4 years of undergrad for ALL of his courses-he had 1 credit hour of “B” and all the rest, at least 119 credit hours of “A.” THAT is genius. Oh, and as a computer science major, he took the 5 hour-5 hour pre-med Biology sequence because he was interested, and earned 2 A’s, always with one of the top 3 test scores in a class of about 280. My other 2 roommates in undergrad took the other two top exam scores-the three sort of rotated who had the top test score.)

    My point: the bar exam is easy. Try sitting for the CPA exam, or the actuary exam. If you do not pass the bar exam on the first try, you should spend a couple of hours in your local park, contemplating your future.

    And with my modest, truly modest, law school performance (not COIF, or law review-but I did my absolute best), I did not feel that I was “practice-ready,” and I was not. It took over 2 years to find a job, and that job was 1/10th of the income as the top 5 or 10 students in my class were paid. This was 1975. Even then, the pay dropped dramatically from the top few to the rest. First job offer was $9,600. I turned that down. (I was making more teaching students part time how to play a musical instrument!) Job I took was $12,000. (That same year, my sister, 7 years younger, with a B.S. in data processing from a second tier state school, took a job with a Fortune 50 corporation, got a job at $22,000 with a pension plan, life insurance, disability insurance, health insurance, dental insurance, eye insurance, and 2 weeks paid vacation. Oh, and an 8 hour day. I was working 70 to 80 hours a week the first 22 years of practice. Work from 8 to 8:30 in the morning to 7 p.m. Go home, eat, come back at 9:00 p.m., and work until 1:00 to 3:00 a.m. Worked most Sunday nights. I have cut back to 10 hour day, 5 days a week.

    My student loan debt monthly payment was $32.92 per month.

    My law school tuition was $1,100 per YEAR. My total educational debt was $1,500.

    This is why I survived.

  15. Part 4

    Were I to assume a current law student’s education debt, at my age, with my practice, it would crush me, and I have a going-concern law practice. Why would anyone think they, as a 0L can do what I cannot do with the strength of my practice?

    So, enroll in law school, incur crushing debt, and fund some non or never practicing law professor’s retirement of vacation home in Aruba, Impressionist art collection, or…

    How deep is the MIND ROT?

    I have a client who worked as an employee-non-academic-at a local university. I represented him and his kids for 15 years or so.

    My client called one day, needing legal advice. Client explained the legal issue. Then said that, now retired and on a fixed income, wanted me to “be easy” on the bill.

    Two of my children attended the university where he worked. My client’s two children obtained 4 degrees from that university. I paid FULL tuition. My client paid NO TUITION, as education at that institution was FREE to children of employees.

    So, I paid part of my client’s childrens’ tuition, and BECAUSE I WAS A LAYWER, AND RICH (not), I should give my client a break on my fees for working for my client. (My client did not understand that I had been paying part of my client’s bills all along.)

    This is a daily insult, practicing law.

    If you listen, think, and act sensibly, great. If not, may God have mercy on your soul for you will need all the help you can get.

    (Sorry to all for the “big run” here, but it just has to be said. Too much is at stake for so many innocent kids.)


  16. Time to face the music. The LSAT is an artificial barrier and needs to be done away with. To many AAMPLE graduates pass the bar and perform better during law school than their peers. Some call this beating the odds, but in reality it just proves the LSAT is worthless to determine / predict future behavior.

    So everyone can't do big law, there will always be a need for prosecutor's and defense attorney's. Don't forget " Gideon's Army". The low scoring LSAT takers will always have a place in Law.

    The Deans are only stating the obvious.

    1. "To[o] many AAMPLE graduates pass the bar and perform better during law school than their peers."

      Stats, or GTFO. You're an idiot.

      As long as there's 40% over production of JDs compared to what the market can bear (see, e.g.,, law school needs MORE barriers to entry.

      There isn't a single school worth a shit that uses AAMPLE or its equivalents. And schools that aren't worth a shit need to be closed down. Period. The market can't absorb their product.

      You're statement is naive and uninformed because there's no need for low-scoring applicants. The underlying problem is cost—and Sallie Mae eliminates price elasticity (or "competition" for non-econ speakers). I.e. schools can charge whatever they want to because students aren't spending "real money" (I have actually heard 1L say this), students are spending future monies that they have deluded themselves into thinking they will earn. This is especially pronounced at the sort of trash pits that use AAMPLE.

      And the underlying problem with this is no legislators want to be who "cut off access to education for students who didn't have the financial wherewithal to pay for their own school." This phrasing of the problem is bizarrely inappropriate, but the liberal media would eat that story up if republicans made the first move & therefore democrats have no incentive to act in a way detrimental to the Education Industrial Complex, who overwhelmingly donate to their party (see, e.g.,

      There would be plenty of TT or TTT grads willing to work for $50K and the job security of not having 40% overproduction of their competition (i.e. JDs). The problem is that schools are telling these grads that schools are sending them into the workforce, but these grads who would otherwise be willing to work for cheap will never be able to pay down on their loans' principle.

      TL;DR: Eliminate lending & the problem fixes itself. If you can't (1) get a scholarship, or (2) pay for yourself, you need to find a different career path.

    2. 9:14-does it make you feel important to give bad advice to the gullible? You are a complete doofus-and one with no actual knowledge of the legal profession. But first, the plural of prosecutor is "prosecutors" and the plural of defense attorney is "defense attorneys" that?
      It's a fight to get a DA or PD job these days; attorneys from "name" schools with several years litigation experience are now applying for these jobs.
      But you're right-the LSAT is an artificial barrier-just like the Bar exam. So let's be consistent-let's do away with the MCAT and licensing exams for physicians, and the nursing boards and the pharmacy boards. And since you're such an avid fan of doing away with "artificial" barriers, let's set things up so the physician you see-and the nurses and pharmacists and dentist-are totally free of the taint of any licensing exams. Great idea, right?
      Please keep your nonsense to yourself; if only one gullible soul listens to you, that would be terrible.

    3. You are actually incorrect. There are more cases than PDs. They are more stressed than BigLaw attorneys because of their work load and the fact that able attorneys are not becoming public defenders.

      Also, one can make an argument without insulting the other party.

    4. Sorry 12:20, but you miss the point and are flat wrong: it's irrelevant who is more stressed-the bottom line is that PD jobs are VERY hard to get. Blathering on about "Gideon's Army", which makes no sense to begin with, won't change that. So while there may be a lot of cases, there aren't a lot of jobs.
      And what's the authority for your statement that PDs are more stressed than Biglaw attorneys? Do you actually know anyone employed in either job?

    5. No, 12:20/9:14, the poster at 5:54 IS correct.

      WTF does "There are more cases than PDs" even mean? That in a county with 1 PD there is greater than 1 case per year? OK, so what's the PD's salary based on that single case?

      Entering a certain labor market is NOT warranted merely because there's a demand for those services IF YOU CAN'T JUSTIFY THE COSTS. Your bullshit argument is the same as "well people always need license plates, so that HAS to be a good vocation!" But then you omit the inconvenient issue about how to pay off your long-term debt when you're not making enough to service your loans (because AAMPLE schools have exploited low-scoring LSAT takers with predatory admissions practices, yet generally continued to raise prices, since 2009) and that your TTTT JD is a commodity for which the PD office doesn't NEED to pay any more than a subsistence wage, given the glutted labor market.

      12:20/9:14, you're an idiot and you deserve to be insulted. The effect of the TTTT JD oversupply isn't even complex enough to be 100-level labor economics -- a high schooler would understand this.

      Quit trying to mislead the knuckle-dragging prospective AAMPLE applicants into thinking they're doing anything other than committing financial suicide.

  17. I am solo and have been practicing for 30 years, having started out early as first a Prosecutor (that's whenthose jobs were available) and then essentially insurance and corporate defense before going out on my own.

    I have done very well over the years, but only because of the Contingency Fee cases, and those good cases, are frankly, much harder to get these days. I would not attempt to go Solo now, but could not imagine working for a large firm for a career. If you do this job, find a nice governmental agency you can represent and enjoy the one life you have to live. Working in the private sector, with all of the sociopaths, is quite frankly not worth it.

  18. You guys are nattering nabobs of negativity. I love my solo practice, especially when I fire my '03 Accord with the squeaky timing belt to get to court so I can pick up a bill and see a thousand other attorneys schlepping along.

  19. I did an LLb(Hons) at a British university a long time ago. I never practiced law but when I emigrated from the UK to the US some 15 years ago I did toy with the idea of going for a JD. I frequently visit TTR as I am convinced the whole American tertiary education system is a scam anyway (law being the foulest of them all) and am so fuckin happy that I never went to "upgrade" my LLb for a JD and join the ranks of such a shitty profession.

    1. If English Education system is so superior why are you here? British ed system keeps people out of the workforce longer because of so few jobs.

    2. Ignore 8:53's xenophobia. Tertiary education in the US is indeed a scam.

    3. What xenophobia? British education isn't a scam? Why do so many Brits come here for jobs?

    4. Having gone to both English and US schools, I agree that most British undergrad degrees are equivalent to graduate degrees from very good to excellent US grad schools. In the UK applicants are actually screened by standardized exams to weed out those better suited to a trade.


    Take a look at this info, from Law School Transparency’s 2015 State of Legal Education report. On the Key Findings page:

    “Facts about Serious Risk Schools

    o At-risk students subsidize tuition for peers who are more likely to pass the bar exam and obtain gainful employment. As price discrimination shifts even more dramatically away from at-risk students, they will pay even higher prices.

    o Average net tuition at serious risk schools is only $1905 less than at the other schools. Even if a student receives a scholarship at one of these schools, the scholarship is more likely to be conditional and more likely to be eliminated.

    o Legal job rates are considerably worse at the serious risk schools. A serious risk school is 4 times as likely to have a below average legal job rate. Nearly three-quarters of schools with employment rates below 50% were serious risk schools.

    o Every for-profit law school enrolled classes consisting of at least 50% at-risk students. The Infilaw-owned schools enrolled classes consisting of between 75% and 100% at-risk students. For-profit school graduates have lower bar passage rates, worse job rates, and more debt. For-profit schools also graduate a higher percentage of students with debt and receive more total federal student loans on a per-school basis than public or private schools.

    o Based on available salary data from serious risk schools, graduates from these programs cannot service their debts without generous federal hardship programs. Even top earners at the more affordable schools face economic difficulty; the rest range from economic difficulty to catastrophe.”

    Sadly, many waterheads continue to enroll in expensive third tier commodes and fourth tier trash pits. When these dolts are drowning in large sums of NON-DISCHARGEABLE debt, and making $38K per year, they will finally see the real value of their garbage “legal education.”

    1. even with that salary, will they not be able to make payments on the loans? Or is your issue with the timeline of the payments? If one accrues a large amount of debt and pays it off in say 10 years while doing something they love, is that not acceptable? Shouldn't it be an issue if they can't make a payment at all or is your issue that the debt is not gone within your own acceptable timeline?

      Furthermore, what exactly makes that stupid? It's not your choice or your life, so who are you to judge how someone else wants to pay off their debt?

      Shouldn't your issue stay within the realm of dishonest schools?

  21. it's so disgusting to see this type of shit happen. been watching from afar since late 2010 and i'm just glad this fuckery doesnt affect me.

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    On December 3, 2015, JDU accountholder “karlmarx” started a thread labeled “Lsac attacks lst report on low quality admissions.” Take a look at the following comments:

    “karlmarx (Dec 3, 2015 - 9:43 am)

    Pathetically the faculty pull the race card in the comment section along with huffing and puffing pedantic garbage criticizing lsts emperical studies. Granted these people never took statistics or understand anything beyond 19th century train torts.
    vespucius (Dec 3, 2015 - 10:18 am)

    What is the point of the lsat then

    irishlaw (Dec 3, 2015 - 1:10 pm)

    I remember back in the day when I took the LSAT some girl in front of me was aiming for one of those CA non ABA credited school. She said she hadn't even looked at a LSAT problem because the law school she was looking at told her her LSAT score did not matter at all, it was just a formality.
    kaneloa (Dec 4, 2015 - 1:46 pm)

    It was "just a formality" because those schools are essentially open admissions.
    justrmor (Dec 8, 2015 - 5:32 pm)

    I took the LSAT without looking at a problem and scored a 154. And I am currently a practicing attorney. (I also have more debt than I would like, which is no doubt partly due to my low LSAT score.) I wouldn't recommend taking the LSAT cold, but if you're not looking to get into a top school, it kind of is just a formality.
    irishlaw (Dec 9, 2015 - 2:10 pm)

    True but even a 154 can get you into a strong regional state school. The school she was looking at has an average lsat score I can't even find.”

    Are you proud of your TTT law degree, Dumbass? As anyone with an IQ above room temperature can attest, an LSAT score of 151 can now get you admitted in SEVERAL DOZEN ABA-accredited law schools. How in the hell is that an achievement?!?!

    1. Hell, 151 will get a full "scholarship" at some toilets.

  25. Here are some more remarks from the JDU discussion above:

    “ichininosan (Dec 3, 2015 - 2:53 pm)

    In a certain way, it doesn't surprise me that LSAC is now attacking Law School Transparency for exposing the fact that law schools are admitting thousands and charging hundreds of millions (and perhaps billions) of dollars to students they know will fail the bar exam. After all, they're both feeding off the same hopes and dreams of youth. If law school is a scam, then there's no point in paying to take the LSAT.

    But to suggest that your admissions test has little or no ability to gauge future performance, contrary to the evidence, that's just too rich.
    dupednontraditional (Dec 3, 2015 - 4:34 pm)

    "We created a national aptitude test that is a hard prerequisite to determine if students were qualified for law school, but you should not use that same test to predict future performance of those self-same students for law school."

    "Wait... Umm..."

    It is funny to see that the pigs are now claiming that an LSAT score is not an indicator on how will perform in law school or on the bar exam. If that is the case, then why do the good schools admit those with high exam results? For some reason, Harvard and Yale are not admitting idiots who score a 150 on the LSAT. By the way, the evidence shows a pretty strong correlation between these measures. Apparently, now that happens to be a mere “coincidence.”

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