In-House Counsel


superette
Hi there!

Unless I am mistaken, I did not find any discussion relating to jobs as in-house consels. What are the prospects for a foreign lawyer with previous work experience in his home country (and either holding a US JD or an LLM) to work as in-house counsel in the US? Everyone speaks about interviews with top law firms during job fairs, but is it also possible to interview with large private firms for in-house counselling jobs, or do they not come to the job fairs?

Also, the salaries in top law firms are pretty well known and publicized, but what about the salaries for in-house counsels?

Many thanks in advance for your help!
Hi there!

Unless I am mistaken, I did not find any discussion relating to jobs as in-house consels. What are the prospects for a foreign lawyer with previous work experience in his home country (and either holding a US JD or an LLM) to work as in-house counsel in the US? Everyone speaks about interviews with top law firms during job fairs, but is it also possible to interview with large private firms for in-house counselling jobs, or do they not come to the job fairs?

Also, the salaries in top law firms are pretty well known and publicized, but what about the salaries for in-house counsels?

Many thanks in advance for your help!
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Comandante
it depends on what is you are of practice.

generally, the route to in-house in positions in the US is via a law firm practice, that is, you are expected to have spent some time working in a law firm practicing the relevant type of law that the available in-house position relates to before you are given any consideration for such role.

In fact most most positions are "back to life" options for stressed-out and over-worked senior attorneys at law-firms; basically, when you are done with the "rat race" and are now looking for equal or slightly less pay in-house but without the 80 hour work weeks (of course, after realizing that partnership is probably statistically not going to happen).

In short, if you want an in-house position (at least a good one) prepare to compete with the "back to life" senior attorneys leaving the law firms, in fact, given the current economic conditions in the US (and the tons of lay-offs at law firms as well as in-house jobs) these are harder to land than ever before.
it depends on what is you are of practice.

generally, the route to in-house in positions in the US is via a law firm practice, that is, you are expected to have spent some time working in a law firm practicing the relevant type of law that the available in-house position relates to before you are given any consideration for such role.

In fact most most positions are "back to life" options for stressed-out and over-worked senior attorneys at law-firms; basically, when you are done with the "rat race" and are now looking for equal or slightly less pay in-house but without the 80 hour work weeks (of course, after realizing that partnership is probably statistically not going to happen).

In short, if you want an in-house position (at least a good one) prepare to compete with the "back to life" senior attorneys leaving the law firms, in fact, given the current economic conditions in the US (and the tons of lay-offs at law firms as well as in-house jobs) these are harder to land than ever before.
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superette
Thanks a lot for your answer!

Ok, it seems that the situation is pretty much the same as in France then, especially the "back to life" aspect of in-house jobs... I've been working for nearly two years (M&A) and already longing to be done with the crazy hours :-(
Thanks a lot for your answer!

Ok, it seems that the situation is pretty much the same as in France then, especially the "back to life" aspect of in-house jobs... I've been working for nearly two years (M&A) and already longing to be done with the crazy hours :-(
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gayatrikmr
Hi,

Would you know if one needs to take the NY bar exam to be employed in a Company as an in-house counsel?

Scenario:

Candidate has an LLB (India), LLM (UK) and has been offered a job as an in-house lawyer/attorney/counsel, ie, willing to sponsor the H1. The lawyer needs to have taken 20 credits at a US law school to be eligible to take the NY bar exam. So, no US law school, no bar exam given by the said student. Would such a student be allowed to work in such a company - or would said student have to take the bar exam route?
Hi,

Would you know if one needs to take the NY bar exam to be employed in a Company as an in-house counsel?

Scenario:

Candidate has an LLB (India), LLM (UK) and has been offered a job as an in-house lawyer/attorney/counsel, ie, willing to sponsor the H1. The lawyer needs to have taken 20 credits at a US law school to be eligible to take the NY bar exam. So, no US law school, no bar exam given by the said student. Would such a student be allowed to work in such a company - or would said student have to take the bar exam route?
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LegalIndia
Hi,Gayatrikmr,

To the extent I know, In all most all westrern and european countries, it is not possible to work in-house legal without being a licensed attorney locally in that country. In my view, one needs to pass the bar exam and be licensed attorney to maek himself eligible to be an in-house legal. THis is quite different to the position existing in India and other asian country.
-LegalIndia
Hi,Gayatrikmr,

To the extent I know, In all most all westrern and european countries, it is not possible to work in-house legal without being a licensed attorney locally in that country. In my view, one needs to pass the bar exam and be licensed attorney to maek himself eligible to be an in-house legal. THis is quite different to the position existing in India and other asian country.
-LegalIndia
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superette
Hi there,

In France you do not need to be a lawyer (i.e. to have passed the bar exam) to work in-house, you have in-house counsels who never passed the bar exam. We do not have the position of "in-house lawyer": when a lawyer decides to leave the law firm to work in-house, he needs to declare this change to the bar and he is omitted from the "bar list", which means that he cannot exercise as a lawyer anymore (he cannot go to court, etc.) until he goes back to a law firm.
Hi there,

In France you do not need to be a lawyer (i.e. to have passed the bar exam) to work in-house, you have in-house counsels who never passed the bar exam. We do not have the position of "in-house lawyer": when a lawyer decides to leave the law firm to work in-house, he needs to declare this change to the bar and he is omitted from the "bar list", which means that he cannot exercise as a lawyer anymore (he cannot go to court, etc.) until he goes back to a law firm.
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LegalIndia
Yes, same is the position in India and most of the other asian countries. But in most of the western and european countries this is not same. May be some countires like France, Spain etc are only the exception. To my knowledge, one needs to be a licensed attorney for the companies to hire him/her as in-house counsel. Please correct me if i am worng.
Yes, same is the position in India and most of the other asian countries. But in most of the western and european countries this is not same. May be some countires like France, Spain etc are only the exception. To my knowledge, one needs to be a licensed attorney for the companies to hire him/her as in-house counsel. Please correct me if i am worng.
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gayatrikmr
Thank you Superette and LegalIndia for your comments.

I did some reading up as well. And you're right, one needs to be a member of a bar of that state or any other state in the US. I think CA goes on to say further that you need a 4+ years of work experience to apply as a foreign legal consultant as well.

Its a tightly wound-up legal system.

If I may ask one more question, students/foreign lawyers who have not taken the bar exam as yet work in law firms in the US until they take the exam. How do they show that to be "authorized" work or work that is not "unauthorized"?
Thank you Superette and LegalIndia for your comments.

I did some reading up as well. And you're right, one needs to be a member of a bar of that state or any other state in the US. I think CA goes on to say further that you need a 4+ years of work experience to apply as a foreign legal consultant as well.

Its a tightly wound-up legal system.

If I may ask one more question, students/foreign lawyers who have not taken the bar exam as yet work in law firms in the US until they take the exam. How do they show that to be "authorized" work or work that is not "unauthorized"?
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hotpursuit
Hi there!

Unless I am mistaken, I did not find any discussion relating to jobs as in-house consels. What are the prospects for a foreign lawyer with previous work experience in his home country (and either holding a US JD or an LLM) to work as in-house counsel in the US? Everyone speaks about interviews with top law firms during job fairs, but is it also possible to interview with large private firms for in-house counselling jobs, or do they not come to the job fairs?

Also, the salaries in top law firms are pretty well known and publicized, but what about the salaries for in-house counsels?

Many thanks in advance for your help!


Hi.

I am currently working for a multinational company's in house counsel in my country (non-US). I just recently graduated and started working here and I earn almost twice as much as a recently hired junior associate for a top law firms in my country. I recommend you to investigate the average salary for in house counsels where you want to work, maybe you will be surprised.

Regards.
<blockquote>Hi there!

Unless I am mistaken, I did not find any discussion relating to jobs as in-house consels. What are the prospects for a foreign lawyer with previous work experience in his home country (and either holding a US JD or an LLM) to work as in-house counsel in the US? Everyone speaks about interviews with top law firms during job fairs, but is it also possible to interview with large private firms for in-house counselling jobs, or do they not come to the job fairs?

Also, the salaries in top law firms are pretty well known and publicized, but what about the salaries for in-house counsels?

Many thanks in advance for your help!</blockquote>

Hi.

I am currently working for a multinational company's in house counsel in my country (non-US). I just recently graduated and started working here and I earn almost twice as much as a recently hired junior associate for a top law firms in my country. I recommend you to investigate the average salary for in house counsels where you want to work, maybe you will be surprised.

Regards.
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atkins
Location is everything. Most reputable US corporations would not even consider hiring a new lawyer as in-house counsel. Corporations tend to pluck lawyers with 4-6 years of experience from law firms to serve in entry-level in-house counsel positions. They allow the firms to train the lawyers before plucking them! Exceptions, of course, do exist -- especially in the area of patents, new lawyers with fluency in exotic languages, etc. However, those exceptions are extremely rare.
Location is everything. Most reputable US corporations would not even consider hiring a new lawyer as in-house counsel. Corporations tend to pluck lawyers with 4-6 years of experience from law firms to serve in entry-level in-house counsel positions. They allow the firms to train the lawyers before plucking them! Exceptions, of course, do exist -- especially in the area of patents, new lawyers with fluency in exotic languages, etc. However, those exceptions are extremely rare.
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