UNSW JD 2013


Hi,

I'm looking for advice, and some information.

I'm an indian lawyer with around 2 years PQE at a corp. law firm. I got an offer for the JD program at UNSW. I applied to UTS and NUS too, but I doubt i'll be hearing from them anytime soon.

Can anyone give me an idea on what my employment prospects are gonna look like after the JD? I want to work for a while, in Aus or SE-Asia. I'm primarily interested in corp law, especially contracts.

I recall reading a thread where someone mentioned that thought the recession has hit lawyers in Aus, firms do still snap up students who score well in their class.

I'm pretty sure i'll accept, just looking to put my mind at ease. Any info would be much appreciated.

Hi,

I'm looking for advice, and some information.

I'm an indian lawyer with around 2 years PQE at a corp. law firm. I got an offer for the JD program at UNSW. I applied to UTS and NUS too, but I doubt i'll be hearing from them anytime soon.

Can anyone give me an idea on what my employment prospects are gonna look like after the JD? I want to work for a while, in Aus or SE-Asia. I'm primarily interested in corp law, especially contracts.

I recall reading a thread where someone mentioned that thought the recession has hit lawyers in Aus, firms do still snap up students who score well in their class.

I'm pretty sure i'll accept, just looking to put my mind at ease. Any info would be much appreciated.
quote
Simon23

Hi
I just completed a jd at unsw. It's a fantastic program but your job prospects will depend on your level of English and your residency status. Unfortunately if you are not a citizen you will find it difficult to get a job at a top firm.However if you are exceptional (say top 10%) you may have a chance. This is one of the top law schools in Australia so this will not be easy. You should consider doing the program regardless of job prospects because it has great professors and a really good social life as well as being very well regarded in Australia.

Hi
I just completed a jd at unsw. It's a fantastic program but your job prospects will depend on your level of English and your residency status. Unfortunately if you are not a citizen you will find it difficult to get a job at a top firm.However if you are exceptional (say top 10%) you may have a chance. This is one of the top law schools in Australia so this will not be easy. You should consider doing the program regardless of job prospects because it has great professors and a really good social life as well as being very well regarded in Australia.
quote

Hi
I just completed a jd at unsw. It's a fantastic program but your job prospects will depend on your level of English and your residency status. Unfortunately if you are not a citizen you will find it difficult to get a job at a top firm.However if you are exceptional (say top 10%) you may have a chance. This is one of the top law schools in Australia so this will not be easy. You should consider doing the program regardless of job prospects because it has great professors and a really good social life as well as being very well regarded in Australia.


Hi Simon!

Well i'm definitely going, I arrive next week. It's great to hear from someone who has finished the program.

I was aware that residency was going to be a factor in getting hired, but I was told that the top students get picked up regardless of residency.

My English proficiency is fine, I've lived overseas for a few years, easily scored an 8 on the IELTS. English is my first language.

I'm hoping that my being qualified in another country will also help my future prospects once I finish the program. I am curious to know how other international students fared alongside you? Was it impossible for them to find work, or just harder than the rest?

Thanks!

<blockquote>Hi
I just completed a jd at unsw. It's a fantastic program but your job prospects will depend on your level of English and your residency status. Unfortunately if you are not a citizen you will find it difficult to get a job at a top firm.However if you are exceptional (say top 10%) you may have a chance. This is one of the top law schools in Australia so this will not be easy. You should consider doing the program regardless of job prospects because it has great professors and a really good social life as well as being very well regarded in Australia.</blockquote>

Hi Simon!

Well i'm definitely going, I arrive next week. It's great to hear from someone who has finished the program.

I was aware that residency was going to be a factor in getting hired, but I was told that the top students get picked up regardless of residency.

My English proficiency is fine, I've lived overseas for a few years, easily scored an 8 on the IELTS. English is my first language.

I'm hoping that my being qualified in another country will also help my future prospects once I finish the program. I am curious to know how other international students fared alongside you? Was it impossible for them to find work, or just harder than the rest?

Thanks!
quote
Simon23

Hi
That's great your are coming. I'm sure you will enjoy it. As for your question, it is definitely not impossible. Your being qualified in another country will help. There are quite a number of international students who are qualified in other countries including Korea, Germany, China etc.

The job market for lawyers in Australia is better than the U.S. but it is still difficult to secure a job at a top firm. Having said that I know of quite a few students (including myself) who have managed to do so. You being an international student will put you at a disadvantage but you will have to make the case that you have attributes local students do not have. This could include your language skills, that you can create networks for the law firm with your home country etc. I would advise you to work hard from day one, get involved in as many voluntary activities with the UNSW law society as you can and try and get a paralegal position. Our summer clerkships are the main way people become employed as lawyers at the top firms and applications for these positions are open in the middle of your second year.

You are obviously courageous or you wouldn't be studying overseas in the first place and investing your time and money. You are facing an uphill battle as an international student but you it is certainly worth trying because you never know.

Hi
That's great your are coming. I'm sure you will enjoy it. As for your question, it is definitely not impossible. Your being qualified in another country will help. There are quite a number of international students who are qualified in other countries including Korea, Germany, China etc.

The job market for lawyers in Australia is better than the U.S. but it is still difficult to secure a job at a top firm. Having said that I know of quite a few students (including myself) who have managed to do so. You being an international student will put you at a disadvantage but you will have to make the case that you have attributes local students do not have. This could include your language skills, that you can create networks for the law firm with your home country etc. I would advise you to work hard from day one, get involved in as many voluntary activities with the UNSW law society as you can and try and get a paralegal position. Our summer clerkships are the main way people become employed as lawyers at the top firms and applications for these positions are open in the middle of your second year.

You are obviously courageous or you wouldn't be studying overseas in the first place and investing your time and money. You are facing an uphill battle as an international student but you it is certainly worth trying because you never know.
quote

Hi,

I am an Indian LLB with around 3 years of post qualification experience in the corporate sector.
From the information that i have gathered, it seems going for a JD is a better option than trying to re qualify through skills assessment. LLM is worthless from the point of view of gaining immediate employment as my discussion with Minter Ellison said that they prefer people who are admitted to the bar.
I am still at the stage of exploring various avenues.
Any advice on the best way to enter the legal profession in Australia ?

Hi,

I am an Indian LLB with around 3 years of post qualification experience in the corporate sector.
From the information that i have gathered, it seems going for a JD is a better option than trying to re qualify through skills assessment. LLM is worthless from the point of view of gaining immediate employment as my discussion with Minter Ellison said that they prefer people who are admitted to the bar.
I am still at the stage of exploring various avenues.
Any advice on the best way to enter the legal profession in Australia ?
quote

I just enroled the 2013 JD program at UNSW. When I find out, i'll let you know!

Thank you Simon for the great information - i'd like to say thanks in person if you're back on campus anytime soon!

Any other 2013 UNSW JD students out there?

I just enroled the 2013 JD program at UNSW. When I find out, i'll let you know!

Thank you Simon for the great information - i'd like to say thanks in person if you're back on campus anytime soon!

Any other 2013 UNSW JD students out there?
quote

Hi,

Thanks for your revert !
I am curious to know why did you decide to pursue JD rather than re-qualifying by giving selected papers after the bar council's skills assessment.
I am looking for some clarity so your response would help !

Hi,

Thanks for your revert !
I am curious to know why did you decide to pursue JD rather than re-qualifying by giving selected papers after the bar council's skills assessment.
I am looking for some clarity so your response would help !
quote

Well, there's no point of doing an LLM if you can't get employed later, and an LLM is not a pathway to a job, other than teaching, even in India!

I talked to a friend, who is a final year law student here and he told me that JD's are treated on par with the undergrad law students. He said that ppl don't really go in for LLMs here, unless its in taxation, or they want to put it on their business cards.

That said and done, networking and your resume are probably what will ultimately get you entry into the legal profession here in Australia.

That said, if you're bent on doing an LLM rather than repeating a whole chunk of your LLB degree - Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is probably a good bet.

Well, there's no point of doing an LLM if you can't get employed later, and an LLM is not a pathway to a job, other than teaching, even in India!

I talked to a friend, who is a final year law student here and he told me that JD's are treated on par with the undergrad law students. He said that ppl don't really go in for LLMs here, unless its in taxation, or they want to put it on their business cards.

That said and done, networking and your resume are probably what will ultimately get you entry into the legal profession here in Australia.

That said, if you're bent on doing an LLM rather than repeating a whole chunk of your LLB degree - Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is probably a good bet.
quote

Thanks for the insight FogAndSteel !

My objective is to be able to work as a lawyer in Australia. Hence, your advice has further reinforced my belief that LLM would only be of ornamental value.

But would I be able to use my experience and degree in India to some advantage on my resume ?

Also, can you please explain what is the difference in JD and LLB.

Thanks for the insight FogAndSteel !

My objective is to be able to work as a lawyer in Australia. Hence, your advice has further reinforced my belief that LLM would only be of ornamental value.

But would I be able to use my experience and degree in India to some advantage on my resume ?

Also, can you please explain what is the difference in JD and LLB.
quote

Well, your degree and resume would help you get into a good law program here. It's a plus that we already know quite a bit about common law.

JD / LLB is pretty much the same thing for us. The difference (I think) is that over here, the undergrad degree in law is called the LLB, and post-grad is the JD.

Dunno why they don't have a postgrad LLB here.

Well, your degree and resume would help you get into a good law program here. It's a plus that we already know quite a bit about common law.

JD / LLB is pretty much the same thing for us. The difference (I think) is that over here, the undergrad degree in law is called the LLB, and post-grad is the JD.

Dunno why they don't have a postgrad LLB here.
quote

Thanks for all your input !

Thanks for all your input !
quote
barmenator

JD / LLB is pretty much the same thing for us. The difference (I think) is that over here, the undergrad degree in law is called the LLB, and post-grad is the JD.

Dunno why they don't have a postgrad LLB here.


Well, mainly, because an LLB is an undergraduate (the initials says so "Bachelor" of Laws) program. While a JD is a graduate program (the initials says so "Doctor" of Laws).

I don't know of any LLB being considered a postgraduate degree, even elsewhere.

The difference is in the academic level attained. But for practice, both do the trick for the bar.

<blockquote> JD / LLB is pretty much the same thing for us. The difference (I think) is that over here, the undergrad degree in law is called the LLB, and post-grad is the JD.

Dunno why they don't have a postgrad LLB here. </blockquote>

Well, mainly, because an LLB is an undergraduate (the initials says so "Bachelor" of Laws) program. While a JD is a graduate program (the initials says so "Doctor" of Laws).

I don't know of any LLB being considered a postgraduate degree, even elsewhere.

The difference is in the academic level attained. But for practice, both do the trick for the bar.
quote

in the US and Canada too I think, if you are doing law you can do the JD. US does not have the LLB.
That means you have an undergrad degree before you do the JD. You can't do an undergrad major in law. Not offered. But in Australia you can- the LLB. So you get Aussies as undergrads doing dual majors law/and something else.

I think it was a good thing that Australian students got to do the LLB. I wish I could have in the US! That being said I don't like how the NSW schools are doing both. Too many students out there with law degrees and not nearly enough work. Western Australia did it right and decided to drop the LLB. Really smart move.
I think UNSW and other schools should have something like a law minor for undergrads. Maybe a few intro courses but drop the LLB. So maybe have electives like Public law, contracts, a human rights elective, Constitutional law, etc just to get a feel. If they want to go to the JD they can get those out of the way as undergrads. There are US schools with law minors that they could look at.

in the US and Canada too I think, if you are doing law you can do the JD. US does not have the LLB.
That means you have an undergrad degree before you do the JD. You can't do an undergrad major in law. Not offered. But in Australia you can- the LLB. So you get Aussies as undergrads doing dual majors law/and something else.

I think it was a good thing that Australian students got to do the LLB. I wish I could have in the US! That being said I don't like how the NSW schools are doing both. Too many students out there with law degrees and not nearly enough work. Western Australia did it right and decided to drop the LLB. Really smart move.
I think UNSW and other schools should have something like a law minor for undergrads. Maybe a few intro courses but drop the LLB. So maybe have electives like Public law, contracts, a human rights elective, Constitutional law, etc just to get a feel. If they want to go to the JD they can get those out of the way as undergrads. There are US schools with law minors that they could look at.
quote
barmenator

I agree with you, Turkeyshoot.

Law market is depressed! Too many universities selling expensive degrees on law, through debt, and flooding the job market with an excess supply. This is resulting in a scarcity of legal jobs and a fall in their salaries.

When undergraduate LLB existed in the US, it was a very affordable degree. Now, the graduate JD has made it unaffordable to most.

That's why many universities are following the US lead. If law studies become longer (3 LLB vs 7 JD) and more expensive ($+50,000 per yr), the less lawyers there will be, and the better they will be paid. They have to be coherent with the fees they charge. Otherwise, the ROI might not take place and put Law schools in jeopardy vs alumni filing claims.

Any businessman than invests +$50,000 a year, expects that much in return, plus a premium.

There are many unemployed alumni with a $500,000 indebtness (including living expenses), and the payment of interest for such a loan is killing them.

The only exception to the rule is the top 5% of the class, who land a job right on graduation night. But, then again, that exception applies to all academic fields, not only law.

I think law is highly overrated now.
Long before, if you wanted to make $ as a professional, you had to either study medicine or law. Nowadays, medicine is clearly #1 option and law is clearly out of the way. Why?

They follow simple economic rules:
Medicine (low supply + high demand = high salary and many job openings)
Law (high supply + low demand = low salary and scarse job openings).

Regards,

I agree with you, Turkeyshoot.

Law market is depressed! Too many universities selling expensive degrees on law, through debt, and flooding the job market with an excess supply. This is resulting in a scarcity of legal jobs and a fall in their salaries.

When undergraduate LLB existed in the US, it was a very affordable degree. Now, the graduate JD has made it unaffordable to most.

That's why many universities are following the US lead. If law studies become longer (3 LLB vs 7 JD) and more expensive ($+50,000 per yr), the less lawyers there will be, and the better they will be paid. They have to be coherent with the fees they charge. Otherwise, the ROI might not take place and put Law schools in jeopardy vs alumni filing claims.

Any businessman than invests +$50,000 a year, expects that much in return, plus a premium.

There are many unemployed alumni with a $500,000 indebtness (including living expenses), and the payment of interest for such a loan is killing them.

The only exception to the rule is the top 5% of the class, who land a job right on graduation night. But, then again, that exception applies to all academic fields, not only law.

I think law is highly overrated now.
Long before, if you wanted to make $ as a professional, you had to either study medicine or law. Nowadays, medicine is clearly #1 option and law is clearly out of the way. Why?

They follow simple economic rules:
Medicine (low supply + high demand = high salary and many job openings)
Law (high supply + low demand = low salary and scarse job openings).

Regards,
quote

Fair Dinkum!

I think all the NSW university offer a law degree. UTS, USYD and UNSW offer the JD as well.
There are way too many law graduates out there. Plus if you are an international student it seems you are at a disadvantage because you aren't used to the system. And then internships/jobs favour the locals. I can say UNSW is a good school and better than USYD. But it simply is not worth it to do the JD. It will be hard enough for Aussie students but for international students even harder. My advice is for international students to consider an LLM if that is an option. Don't do the JD until NSW makes the move of getting rid of the LLB which has its pros and cons. But they can't keep doing what they are doing because you are getting tons of law graduates in NSW without any jobs and a shitload of debt that can't be repaid back. For a lot of people, a lot of good students, the JD in NSW is going to be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor that's just going to be a waste.
I know for a fact UNSW wants to keep expanding and adding students but that's not the way to go. Sure it will look good on paper and with the rankings. Lots of good teachers plus international professors. They are treating the JD like an undergrad degree but it needs to be seen as a transition to professional work. Until they make serious changes stay away. I like the LLB but I think the hard choice needs to be made to remove it.
Then put limits on JD intake and LLM. Maybe 80 JD students a year, and 50 LLM. That's it. Become an elite world school that will be sustainable and help out the students because right now a lot will get left behind through no fault of their own.

Fair Dinkum!

I think all the NSW university offer a law degree. UTS, USYD and UNSW offer the JD as well.
There are way too many law graduates out there. Plus if you are an international student it seems you are at a disadvantage because you aren't used to the system. And then internships/jobs favour the locals. I can say UNSW is a good school and better than USYD. But it simply is not worth it to do the JD. It will be hard enough for Aussie students but for international students even harder. My advice is for international students to consider an LLM if that is an option. Don't do the JD until NSW makes the move of getting rid of the LLB which has its pros and cons. But they can't keep doing what they are doing because you are getting tons of law graduates in NSW without any jobs and a shitload of debt that can't be repaid back. For a lot of people, a lot of good students, the JD in NSW is going to be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor that's just going to be a waste.
I know for a fact UNSW wants to keep expanding and adding students but that's not the way to go. Sure it will look good on paper and with the rankings. Lots of good teachers plus international professors. They are treating the JD like an undergrad degree but it needs to be seen as a transition to professional work. Until they make serious changes stay away. I like the LLB but I think the hard choice needs to be made to remove it.
Then put limits on JD intake and LLM. Maybe 80 JD students a year, and 50 LLM. That's it. Become an elite world school that will be sustainable and help out the students because right now a lot will get left behind through no fault of their own.
quote
barmenator

I agree with you again, Turkeyshoot!

Limits on the students intake should be set by Law Schools, if they want to preserve an international prestige.

I wouldn't go for an LLB either, if the society you're in is migrating to a JD. Why? Because, soon employers won't know how to deal with your degree.

Once a change is made, there's no way back. Everything is adapted, accordingly.

An LLM or a PG qualifying degree is the cheapest way to go, since they're both 1 year in length. However, the downside is, you'll always be at disadvantage vs local lawyers.

I agree with you again, Turkeyshoot!

Limits on the students intake should be set by Law Schools, if they want to preserve an international prestige.

I wouldn't go for an LLB either, if the society you're in is migrating to a JD. Why? Because, soon employers won't know how to deal with your degree.

Once a change is made, there's no way back. Everything is adapted, accordingly.

An LLM or a PG qualifying degree is the cheapest way to go, since they're both 1 year in length. However, the downside is, you'll always be at disadvantage vs local lawyers.
quote

yeah. The LLM is the best choice. But unless you got a plan for it, either back home or in Oz not much point. In my opinion the JD/LLB issue has reached crisis mode but they can cover that up for a while. I wonder which NSW school will make the hard, but correct choice and drop one.
The NSW legal community needs to get the blinders off and figure something out.
Again, my advice is to drop the LLB, make it a minor and allow undergrad students to get things like Public law, maybe an elective out of the way. Maybe two/three courses max, the rest of the minor could be law subjects but count to your undergrad degree. They get their degree and then if they decide they are into law they have a nice little jump start. The US law schools were happy taking in the money but they suffered when the collapse came. It's hard In NSW it is even more so, with a lot more qualified LLB and JD students coming out in the next few years. I know UNSW has been moving up and getting an international rep. They may be the best law school in Australia. But they have to realize, along with the other dual LLB/JD schools in NSW and Victoria that a change needs to be made otherwise students are going to be getting screwed over in the years to come.

yeah. The LLM is the best choice. But unless you got a plan for it, either back home or in Oz not much point. In my opinion the JD/LLB issue has reached crisis mode but they can cover that up for a while. I wonder which NSW school will make the hard, but correct choice and drop one.
The NSW legal community needs to get the blinders off and figure something out.
Again, my advice is to drop the LLB, make it a minor and allow undergrad students to get things like Public law, maybe an elective out of the way. Maybe two/three courses max, the rest of the minor could be law subjects but count to your undergrad degree. They get their degree and then if they decide they are into law they have a nice little jump start. The US law schools were happy taking in the money but they suffered when the collapse came. It's hard In NSW it is even more so, with a lot more qualified LLB and JD students coming out in the next few years. I know UNSW has been moving up and getting an international rep. They may be the best law school in Australia. But they have to realize, along with the other dual LLB/JD schools in NSW and Victoria that a change needs to be made otherwise students are going to be getting screwed over in the years to come.
quote
barmenator

Excellent idea, Turkeyshoot!
A law minor is a great way to get rid of the LLB.
The US does not offer that choice, and has no law minors.
But, I read some other common law countries do.

Migrating to JD instead of an LLB, is a natural filter of student intake, since the road is twice as long and doubles the cost.
Not many wanna be lawyers, may be able to afford such an endeavor.

The problem that the US faces is that cost is not an issue, since money is taken out of student loans. That's why there's an overpopulation of lawyers.

The real problem will come when 90% of those alumni, default their loan payments, while not beng able to find a job to repay them.

I reckon the US Government will not be able to hold this position for much longer.

Excellent idea, Turkeyshoot!
A law minor is a great way to get rid of the LLB.
The US does not offer that choice, and has no law minors.
But, I read some other common law countries do.

Migrating to JD instead of an LLB, is a natural filter of student intake, since the road is twice as long and doubles the cost.
Not many wanna be lawyers, may be able to afford such an endeavor.

The problem that the US faces is that cost is not an issue, since money is taken out of student loans. That's why there's an overpopulation of lawyers.

The real problem will come when 90% of those alumni, default their loan payments, while not beng able to find a job to repay them.

I reckon the US Government will not be able to hold this position for much longer.
quote

actually even if they drop the LLB it will still be a weak job market. But if they keep both in the long-run it will be extremely poor. I know UNSW is like, "hey look at us. We are becoming a top international legal university."

Yes, yes you guys are. And I understand them not wanting to make a change. But the main focus should be on the students and their well-being and the simple reality is that unless law student intakes are limited greatly then there will be serious problems. I know they would freak out if I said, 'you need to drop the LLB, limit the JD to about 90 students a year'. For them that's hundreds less students so a lot less in fees. But that's the hard choice and it should be done. Become an elite international LLM/JD law school

actually even if they drop the LLB it will still be a weak job market. But if they keep both in the long-run it will be extremely poor. I know UNSW is like, "hey look at us. We are becoming a top international legal university."

Yes, yes you guys are. And I understand them not wanting to make a change. But the main focus should be on the students and their well-being and the simple reality is that unless law student intakes are limited greatly then there will be serious problems. I know they would freak out if I said, 'you need to drop the LLB, limit the JD to about 90 students a year'. For them that's hundreds less students so a lot less in fees. But that's the hard choice and it should be done. Become an elite international LLM/JD law school
quote

maybe something like this
http://lawandsociety.ucsd.edu/requirements/index.html


For public law especially, or some legal ethic/history courses I have no issue at all with undergrads getting that out of the way.

maybe something like this
http://lawandsociety.ucsd.edu/requirements/index.html


For public law especially, or some legal ethic/history courses I have no issue at all with undergrads getting that out of the way.
quote

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