General Question

bkburbo's avatar

Is law school worth $150k in student loans, 3 years' lost wages, and concomitant stress?

Asked by bkburbo (251points) September 17th, 2008

Or are there better career choices for a liberal arts grad.

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14 Answers

tinyfaery's avatar

Law school does not have to cost that much. My “sister-in-law” just graduated from law school. Considering how much she’s currently earning at her entry-level position, I’d say yes.

rss's avatar

There are LOTS of career choices for a liberal arts grad. Law school is a great choice if you a. love the law, b. handle stress well and c. either enjoy competition or can stay out of the race. I’m in law school and love it – but I also have a very clear idea of what I want to do afterward and how law school will help me achieve that goal.

That being said, there are law schools that cost significantly less than 150k, as well as scholarships and if you like corporate law, very well paying jobs post graduation. I wouldn’t let the debt deter you, but I would think about why you want to go.

bkburbo's avatar

How will the job market be for lawyers for the next 20–30 years?

Lightlyseared's avatar

If you’re good yes. If you’re not…

Snoopy's avatar

@bkburbo Yes it is worth it…..Typically the more education you have the more earning potential you have…..
HOWEVER….you should choose a career path based on your desire to do a particular job.
Also, if you are unsure or ambivalent about law school, there is no reason you have to start immediately. Take a year to decide while working at some other job….

marinelife's avatar

You left out a few things to consider. Do you have a deep love for the law? A passion to be a lawyer? Are you willing to work insanely long hours for years during the prime of your youth like a hamster on the wheel for the chance at a partner slot?

I would add these factors to your hopper. There are many other options for a liberal arts grad.

Nimis's avatar

Marina: I just GA’d you because 1) yes, that was a good answer…
but also because 2) I really wanted to see what would happen!
Five digit lurve! But, alas, nothing happened. pout

shilolo's avatar

Great answer, Marina. Plus, I get to take credit for putting you over the 10K mark! Congratulations. You win the prize.

Nimis's avatar


marinelife's avatar

@shilolo Thank you for the boost. Thanks also for the laugh (the trailer). Yours is one of the minds I most enjoying observing and engaging with in this most interesting medium.

Umm, wait, I just got am IM from Andrew and Ben. I have to go. There’s trouble on a water planet. Something is killing all the jellies. See you all later in the Q&As.

Judi's avatar

It seems to me like the payback would be less than 2 years so financially I would say that it was a good investment. How you value your stress is an individual matter.

cwilbur's avatar

Do you want to be a lawyer? Do you think it will make you happy?

If so, then it’s worth the investment. If not, then it’s not.

steelmarket's avatar

When I entered architecture school, in the first intro class, the teacher advised everyone to drop the major if they felt that they could be happy doing anything else. I would imagine the same could be said about the law profession.

AmirKhan's avatar

Well I can tell you I am a first year lawyer and have been practicing for about one month, and Ive been wondering if the stress is worth it. Whats the use in making money when you have no time to spend it? I hate pressure and liability but then I think of doctors who have much more of both. Watchign a few episodes of ER makes me realize I have an easy job. I say do it, worst case scenario you have a law degree which is a good thing to throw on your resume. But dont spend 150 K on it.

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