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Thread: Career Change...

  1. #1
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    Career Change...

    Well not really a change in career per se I would still work in legal, but change from civil defense to criminal defense full time.

    For the past few months, I have been helping a solo criminal attorney set up his practice on a part time basis after work and on some Saturday's.

    I have been helping him market his business (advertiseing), set up his office and interviewing potential clients.

    He won't represent clients he knows are guilty, only the ones he senses are innocent. Although realizes some could still be guilty.

    This includes those charged with drug dealing, robberies, assault and battery, even some accused of rape.

    It's clear after interviewing, most are innocent, for some it's questionable.

    Anyway, he is getting very busy now and needs someone full time and has asked me to join and team up with him.

    I am finding that I really enjoy the work, and even feel this is sort of my calling; problem is he can't pay me nearly as much as my job now, and my lifestyle would change dramatically because of it.

    I'd have to move from a beautiful apt on the bay paying $1750 per month to a small studio no more than $1000 per month or even less. Less going out, less travel, less shopping, less spa days, lol.

    I know it sounds super shallow but I've been living this way for long time, plus I am questioning my ability to assist an attorney who may possibly get those guilty of an egregious crime off!

    Can I do this? While violent crime sickens me, it also sickens me how many innocent people are convicted and sentenced to long prison terms. And how corrupt our police dept and district attorney's office has become in our city, I've witnessed it!

    My bf said I can move in with him but if we choose to live together I don't want it to be because of financial reasons.

    I am really struggling with this decision!

    Any advice would be appreciated! Thanks in advance!!

  2. #2
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    Usually I am all for doing what you like even if you earn less money. Not in this case though. First, the salary is considerably lower and second since he is a solo attorney there is no job stability. Unless you hate your job which seems you don't, I wouldn't recommend it.

    Plus, do you want to get involved with the sort of people he will be having as clients?

  3. #3
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    Originally Posted by dias
    Usually I am all for doing what you like even if you earn less money. Not in this case though. First, the salary is considerably lower and second since he is a solo attorney there is no job stability. Unless you hate your job which seems you don't, I wouldn't recommend it.

    Plus, do you want to get involved with the sort of people he will be having as clients?
    Fair points but again he will not choose to represent clients he knows are guilty (although he realizes under our country's Constitution, everyone is entitled to a zealous defense).

    It's just his preference not to.

    No I do not hate my job, I don't love it either, the work is mundane and not very gratifying.

    The money is good though but should that be the driving force to stay?

    This is one of the issues I am struggling with.

    Thanks dias. :)

  4. #4
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    I am curious, is there a way, after you get some experience in this area under your belt, to move to a firm that will pay you better? Is taking this job change a permanent change of financial status or a temporary one? If it is temporary and you should ultimately earn a comfortable living (perhaps not as well as you are doing now) but doing something more fulfilling, then maybe you should change positions. But if you will never earn an income you are truly comfortable with, you need to think about that in terms of the rest of your life.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    Why would you consider taking a pay cut?

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    Originally Posted by Jibralta
    Why would you consider taking a pay cut?
    He does not have the financial resources just yet to pay me what my current job pays and I find the work more rewarding than civil work..

    I know it sounds odd, even unconscionable to some that I do find such work rewarding but there are many reasons for this.

    Some of those reasons explained in my initial post.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    I know he can't afford it. I'm trying to understand why you would consider sacrificing your lifestyle because he can't afford it.

    ETA: I see you've edited your reply since my response. It's really your personal choice to decide whether the reward you get from the work makes up for the resulting lack of income.

  9. #8
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    There are only 2 valid reasons that I'd take such a drastic pay cut (and I have before, so I do understand):

    You are miserable at your current job
    or
    You believe this to be a stepping stone to something greater.

    Remember, if you take this position and in 6 months, you've moved, you've downgraded, and you hate the job, you are back at square one.

    Me? I wouldn't do it. And yes, I have taken a drastic pay cut, on purpose. I changed jobs to make 60% less, but it was for both of my above reasons combined. This one.....not sure I'd do it.

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by Jibralta
    I know he can't afford it. I'm trying to understand why you would consider sacrificing your lifestyle because he can't afford it.
    I explained in my initial post J.

    But you've made your point, for you the money, lifestyle is the motivating factor, trumps all else -- job satisfaction, reward for helping those who might very well be innocent, being happy.

    I respect your opinion. For me though I am questioning those values, whether money/lfestyle should be the motivating factor.
    Last edited by katrina1980; 06-30-2019 at 03:51 PM.

  11. #10
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    I would stick with your current job. You have too many doubts about taking on this new position.

    If youíre more interested in criminal law, why donít you keep your current job, but keep your eyes open for a criminal defence job at a firm, where they can pay you more money so you donít have to sacrifice your stability/lifestyle?

    In the meantime and maybe before you apply for other jobs, see if you can continue to assist this criminal attorney on a part-time basis, so you can get a feel for the work and clients in order to see if itís really the type of work youíd like?

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