Attorneys are no longer getting the jobs that they dreamed of when they entered law school. It’s a sad state of affairs to say the least. To be on the safe side, it might be a good idea if lawyers and law school students put aside their dreams of having that A Time to Kill Moment, because in this economy it’s just not going to happen.
Companies who need lawyers are now outsourcing to areas where attorneys don’t demand the huge salaries as they do in cities. Areas like West Virginia and North Dakota, for example, are places where lawyers can be scrounged up and paid very little. But the good news that came from this was that those once outsourced jobs are now being backsourced to lawyers, for a “fraction of the pay.” I’m confused too, so stay with me.
However, backsourcing is both a limited field and, for some, not a very appetizing avenue so a lot of lawyers have started temping. They’re being hired as contract attorneys who “move from job to job.” They get paid hourly and spend hours upon hours reviewing documents for both corporations and law firms. They do it for 10-12 hours a day, and in rooms where talking and breaks are both limited and honestly, frowned upon. The contract lawyers read thousands of online documents and must quickly code them – their speed is monitored by computers – and label them either litigation or investigation.
Being a lawyer doesn’t sound so glitzy anymore, does it? At the moment, I’m really happy I didn’t listen to that whole “you should be a doctor or lawyer because that’s where the big bucks are” thing. I may work 10 hours a day sometimes, but at least I’m on my couch and my breaks involve socializing with my imaginary friends.