Q I’m a 3L at a lower tier law school, not a Cooley or NYLS, but not a whole lot different. I’ve racked up $90,000 in student loans, am doing well in school but got absolutely no on-campus interviews, either last year or this year. It’s not that I didn’t try. But the big firms, the ones that actually have money to spend on salaries, bypassed my school. And there’s not much out there anywhere else, even locally.
I came to school thinking I had a pretty good chance of a job after three years, especially when the placement office had impressive stats on how many grads actually got jobs. Now it seems those numbers were baked. Should I sue my law school for fraud?
A Sure, go ahead and sue, it’s the new way to complain. But don’t expect to get any of the following out of the lawsuit: a full-time job, a part-time job, or a job at KFC. What will you get? Five more years of sitting there, stewing, and hoping for justice, which you also won’t get. Oh, and, if successful, you’ll get a nice warm plaintiff-like feeling and a voucher for fifty percent off the latest professional responsibility treatise in the law school bookstore.
I’ll admit I went to law school in a different era, but placement stats back then were still a joke and we knew it. I also would wager that your reason for picking your law school, or even going to law school in the first place, had little to do with the specific placement rate of new grads. Or, more accurately for the purpose of suing your school, you wouldn’t have cared one fucking whit whether that rate was 85.3 percent or 81.6 percent. You and 150,000 other folks went to law school in the last three years, and willingly spent more than $100,000 of your own money, taking a gamble that you weren’t going to be the sad sacks within that 19 percent margin of unemployed. But, hey, who knew the economy would tank as you signed your name each year to promissory notes in excess of $30,000? You didn’t. We didn’t.
One more word of bitter wisdom before I get off my soapbox. You think it’s bad now? Go ahead and sue. Believe me, a legion of douchebag first-tier T14 lawyers are currently out there waiting, actually salivating, about taking your deposition and asking in excruciating detail about each and every step you took to go to law school and what exactly you expected from it. Do you really want to give them one more opportunity to feel so smug and righteous?