From the article:
* The average interest rate on federal loans for graduate students is 8%, which starts to accrue while the student is still in school.
* The typical law graduate often holds debt in excess of $150,000 by the time repayment begins.
* Salaries have plummeted, with the mean private-practice compensation today, $78,653, falling 16% from where it was in 2009 ($93,454), and 8% from 2002 ($85,518)
* Law-school tuition has increased 434.8% at private schools since 1985
Author then gets personal. He says:
“In my case, although I found employment, my finances are precarious. With $169,000 in law-school debt and an annual salary of $55,000 (which is within the average range for a small firm), I cannot start paying off my debt in a responsible and timely manner, much less afford to have a wedding, start a family, buy a home, etc.”
Deregulation destroyed Airline Pilots
Obamacare destroyed (is going to destroy) doctors
and now the last one still standing lawyers are too plentiful.
I can tell you this: part of the problem is the law firms themselves who have as their mission statements such drivel as: Make as much money as possible. Some of these blokes are making $1M a year and couldn’t care less that because of their threats to take clients with them when they leave if someone touches “one penny” of “their” money, new lawyers can’t be hired. The pyramid eats itself. yech, they make me want to puke. And they don’t do their own work, they have paralegals and secretaries who they treat poorly and shout at, pull phones out of walls, it’s wrong. They demand associates contribute to political campaigns, the whole thing is rotten.
But no one figured on the collapse of these industries. Once most of them were gone, the legal profession more or less has gone too. Some law firms have survived through numerous mergers and acquisitions. I worked for one firm that was bought and sold several times. Some firms carved out niches — those that focus on auto accidents, medical malpractice, etc. — but more than a few firms have failed, and the ones that survived don’t make the serious money they once did during the golden age of industry.
Of course, the hard times now translate into fewer jobs in the field. And it’s not only lawyers who can’t fins jobs. Support jobs in the field have dwindled. I would love to work part-time again, but part-time and even full-time secretarial positions here are practically non-existent. The last firm I worked for has figured out that because nearly every attorney is computer savvy, it doesn’t need as many secretaries as it once did. In the old days, a secretary would work for one or two attorneys at the most. Now, one secretary works for three, four, five or more people.
I’m sorry about the difficulties you are having. It stinks.
Student loans = Indentured Servants.
Oh Boy, what a loser. This "field" didn't exist when I was in law school. Sounds like a typical non-profit job funded by taypayer money...
I’m an attorney - in a private practice. Note that the article is talking about “jobs.” I don’t doubt that this is true. Fewer firms want to hire lawyers as employees. The trend is really technology-driven. There’s little reason nowadays to actually have lawyers in-house in a full-on employer/employee relationship, when technological advances make possible and profitable contracting with a plethora of specialized attorneys on a just-in-time contract basis. The big firms are all falling one by one. Coudert Brothers is gone, to name but one. Other Big Law firms are laying off and cutting partners. It’s a real bloodbath. But guys like me - sole practitioners on Main Street - hardly notice. In short, there are lots of opportunities out there. In fact, there are whole market segments that aren’t served at all. It’s just that you have to use technology, contract with the right people, and be flexible.
I would say this guy was VERY lucky.
Formula should include number of jobs cut or sent overseas, retirements and deaths of employees, permanent disabilities in order to get a more complete picture of the problem. Layoffs, firings etc.