×

Should I Become a Contract Attorney?

( 89 votes, average: 4.7 out of 5)
What do you think about this article? Rate it using the stars above and let us know what you think in the comments below.
Question:

Should I become a contract attorney?




Answer:


Yes
There are several valid reasons why you might want to freelance. Perhaps your firm just went under and you want to take on project work to generate income while you're interviewing. Maybe you're a new grad whose firm decided to cut back on associate hiring. Maybe you're bored with retirement, or you want to get back in the game after raising a family. Whatever your situation, legal freelancing is increasingly popular. Is it for you? Consider:
 
A. Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes
  • Are you targeting the right employers? - Start your search with small to mid-sized law firms. Many now hire contract lawyers to help with what seems to be just a temporary increase in workload. When that spike begins to look more permanent, the contract lawyer becomes an experienced and tested candidate for the new position. Lawyers with some experience in civil litigation or transactional work may discover good opportunities with corporate legal departments. Small but rapidly expanding companies with only one in-house lawyer may need temporary assistance with product chronologies, due diligence, routine filings or discovery work that may evolve into a permanent position as the company grows.
     
  • Have you communicated your flexibility? - Whenever you make contact with a potential employer, make it clear that you are willing to prove your suitability for a permanent position by starting out with a period of contract employment. Never offer to take on a project without compensation though. That approach signals more desperation than talent.
     
  • Are you considering the right assignments? - When a hiring lawyer is dissatisfied with the work of a contract lawyer, there are no second chances. For that reason, accept only assignments within your competency and experience. Get clear instructions up front and repeat back what you've been told to confirm you heard it correctly. Be sure to ask for work samples so you can meet the hiring lawyer's expectations of style and format. Then check in regularly as you progress to be certain you're still on track and offer the very best product you can on a timely basis.

No
If you're working full-time now and decide freelancing would simplify your life, consider the downside. If and when you decide to return to a traditional career path, you will be questioned about your commitment to returning to the strenuous lifestyle of a full-time law practice. And this assumes you've got a strong resume and you haven't been out of the permanent job market too long.
 
Summary: Whatever your situation, legal freelancing is increasingly popular. Is it for you? Consider the following before deciding what you want to do.

See the following articles for more information:
 
Search In-house contract attorney jobs near Independence location.


About Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes is the founder of LawCrossing and an internationally recognized expert in attorney search and placement. Harrison is extremely committed to and passionate about the profession of legal placement. Harrison’s writings about attorney careers and placement attract millions of reads each year. LawCrossing has been ranked on the Inc. 500 twice. For more information, please visit Harrison Barnes’ bio.

About LawCrossing
LawCrossing has received tens of thousands of attorneys jobs and has been the leading legal job board in the United States for almost two decades. LawCrossing helps attorneys dramatically improve their careers by locating every legal job opening in the market. Unlike other job sites, LawCrossing consolidates every job in the legal market and posts jobs regardless of whether or not an employer is paying. LawCrossing takes your legal career seriously and understands the legal profession. For more information, please visit www.LawCrossing.com.


Featured Testimonials

The site is full of informative articles.
Amy


Facts

LawCrossing Fact #69: Users always have the most up-to-date information on jobs because once a law job becomes available, it is added to LawCrossing.

 
Let's Do It!
Email:

Only LawCrossing consolidates every job it can find in the legal industry and puts all of the job listings it locates in one place.

  • We have more than 25 times as many legal jobs as any other job board.
  • We list jobs you will not find elsewhere that are hidden in small regional publications and employer websites.
  • We collect jobs from more than 250,000 websites and post them on our site.
  • Increase your chances of being seen! Employers on public job boards get flooded with applications. Our private job boards ensure that only members can apply to our job postings.
About Harrison Barnes

Harrison is the founder of BCG Attorney Search and several companies in the legal employment space that collectively gets thousands of attorneys jobs each year. Harrison is widely considered the most successful recruiter in the United States and personally places multiple attorneys most weeks. His articles on legal search and placement are read by attorneys, law students and others millions of times per year.

Success Stories

I came back to LawCrossing to search through the listings in my new job search because I had been able to get my last 2 jobs through using the site. I love the search capacity and filters. This is a very valuable service.
  • Jennifer Guidea Bloomfield, NJ