4 Reasons You Shouldn't Go To Law School

4 Reasons You Shouldn't Go To Law School

Jul 18, 2022, 9:56:57 AM News

Are you considering a law degree? Hit the brakes. Before you commit to law school, consider these crucial reasons to reconsider. 

There Are Too Many Lawyers

From TV screens to bus stops and everything in between, advertisements for legal services are everywhere you turn. While many of these legal firms specialize in particular areas of law—for example, Zinda Law Group focuses on personal injury—it still seems like there are just too many lawyers.

Right now, there are well over 1 million active, fully licensed lawyers practicing in the USA. Between 2008 and 2018, the number of attorneys rose by over 15%. Whittier Law School closed its doors in 2017, becoming the first accredited program to shut down in over 30 years. With so many schools churning out lawyers, many are struggling to find the lucrative careers that drew them to school in the first place. As such, admissions have begun to decline. 

Analysts suggest that the market has become oversaturated with young professionals, and there aren't enough desirable jobs. Is this a highly competitive job market you want to enter? 

It's Ridiculously Expensive

Law school grads average $108,000 in J.D. loans and $130,000 in total education debt.Since graduate school typically takes three years to complete, you'll also need to pay for rent, transportation, and other living expenses while in school. 

A Gallup poll showed that only 23% of students believe that their education was worth the cost. It may be partly because law students have fewer opportunities for experiential learning and personal support during their education. 

On top of that, an even smaller fraction of graduates believes their schooling prepared them for the real world. It's a substantially lower percentage than other professionals with different graduate degrees. 

A Law Career May Not Be As Lucrative As You Think

Financial incentives are a big reason many people pursue a J.D. We all have an image in our heads of a big-shot lawyer making a high-end 6-figure salary, with all the glam and reverence that comes with wealth. But for the majority of law school grads, that fantasy isn't on the immediate horizon.

While some private firms pay 6-figure starting salaries, the average private-sector salary for the class of 2020 was $80,000. For federal and non-profit jobs, that figure is even lower. 

It's Not a Guaranteed Road to Fulfillment 

Some people go to law school because it seems like a straightforward path to do some good in the world. But important lawyer jobs, such as public defense and victim advocacy, often don't pay very well. 

Plus, burnout is prevalent among lawyers. It's a commonplace to work upwards of 50 hours a week. Work-life balance is nearly impossible with a law career.

Still Determined?

So you've weighed the pros and cons, including cost, career outcomes, and the reality after graduation. Are you still set on going to law school? 

If so, go for it! While it may be an uphill battle, the world needs dedicated lawyers with a commitment and passion for advocacy and justice. 

Published by Pankaj Sharma

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