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"The most common means of obtaining a job was a letter or other "self-initiated contact" with the employer..."
- NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF LAW PLACEMENT
Legal Authority BLOG

An Advocate for Attorneys and Law Students to Get Jobs


A. Harrison Barnes
In terms of helping attorneys get jobs, one of the more effective means for doing so is by approaching the specific types of employers you would like to work for (whether or not they are soliciting applications) directly through a focused campaign. Sporadically applying to jobs on job posting boards, classified advertisements, and through recruiters can work — but for many attorneys it can take a great deal of time and does not work for even the best attorneys. I formerly practiced law with a major New York City-based law firm and knew several attorneys with stellar qualifications who sporadically applied to jobs through recruiters, classified ads, and job posting boards for years. You probably know attorneys who have been doing this for a long time as well.

The “apply now and then” means of going about a job search (which is a common strategy for most attorneys) cannot possibly give you the type of market coverage (and corresponding offers) that you are capable of getting—or ensure you get a position in a timely manner. No matter how good a recruiting firm is–not all firms use recruiters, and not all recruiters have all the jobs. No matter how good a job board is–no job board has all the jobs and you will be competing with every attorney with an email account. Statistics also indicate that the vast majority of legal positions in the United States are filled by unsolicited and self-initiated contact attorneys initiate with employers. Incredibly, however, most attorneys never take the step of actually performing an aggressive self-initiated and targeted job search campaign to employers not soliciting applications. Even the National Association of Law Placement is clear that most attorneys get position by approaching employers who do not solicit their resume.

The problem with contacting employers on your own is that it is a tremendous amount of work and something few practicing attorneys have the time to do. In addition, an attorney’s time is valuable. The amount of work required to build a comprehensive list of employers and hiring contacts within each city is profound. Not all firms list themselves in Martindale, we estimate that less than 1% of the law firms in the United States are in the NALP Guide and–even assuming you had a comprehensive list of information–picking up the phone to make hundreds of phone calls to identify who to approach within each hiring organization is a ridiculous amount of work. Not to mention the cost of printing, the possibility for typos in the contact information and loading all that information into a database to print all those cover letters and envelopes.

In my opinion, the most effective way to get a legal position is by using a company called Legal Authority (www.legalauthority.com). Legal Authority probably assists more attorneys get positions than any single organization in the United States and what they do is nearly foolproof.

Legal Authority (working closely with you) will review and revise your resume and cover letter, and then laser print cover letters and envelopes addressed to the hiring contacts in the specific types of legal employers you are interested in. Legal Authority maintains the largest database of legal hiring contacts of any company in the world: There are over 40 attorneys and researchers working at Legal Authority, and the company operates 24 hours a day updating a database of more than 750,000 hiring contacts. There is probably a 99.9% chance that the next legal hiring organization you go to work for is already in Legal Authority’s database. How you get to these legal employers is up to you, but using Legal Authority will ensure you do find these employers. I strongly encourage you to review Legal Authority’s website at www.legalauthority.com.

If you are serious about getting an attorney position, you owe it to yourself to at least speak with Legal Authority and hear what they can do to assist you. Legal Authority offers a free no cost or obligation consultation where they will tell you how many employers match your interests in the area(s) you want to work, and will advise you on changes you can make to your resume to make it more effective.

One of the most important attributes any attorney can have is the ability to advocate. Legal Authority will make you your own advocate by, in effect, allowing you to do the type of work recruiters do on your own while providing you with (1) an effective and revised cover letter and resume and (2) personalized letters to every specific employer you tell them you would be interested in working for in any area of the United States, Europe or Asia.

This strategy is effective and works: Legal Authority assists hundreds of attorneys each month has been used by top partners in major United States law firms, General Counsels of important corporations, associates in small and large firms, and even law students. Legal Authority can assist you too.

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Well, I have to hand it to you. Your system actually worked. My resumes went out on January 8, and less than two weeks later, I had interviews with five different firms, including one second interview...
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I sent 300 letters and got three interviews within one week, and eight days after sending the letters, I had a great offer. I love the firm and the environment. I am enjoying my new job immensely, and...
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My law degree was earned in China. I thought getting a summer job with my background was impossible, because my Career Services Office couldn't help me, but Legal Authority's marketing got me the job....
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