Is Law School a Good Backup Plan, or Is That Crazy Talk?

By George Khoury, Esq. on April 02, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Not many lawyers see their career as a fallback, or at least, not many will admit it. After all, lawyering is one of the most prestigious jobs a person can get if they can't stomach the sight of blood.

For prospective law students that see lawyering or law school as a fallback plan, their optimism at falling up is commendable. Unfortunately, unless money is no object to you, or you worked hard enough to earn significant scholarship and grant money, law school is not a good backup or fallback plan. Frankly, barring some innovative and specific high earning capacity career path/plan, law school is just too expensive for a student to not be fully committed to working as an attorney.

Backup to What?

For prospective law students interested in politics, or other legal-related fields, like legal tech, it may well be that a law school education would prove to be a significant benefit that might actually pay off. Also, for those who dream of making it big one day in the creative world, if you have the bandwidth for law school and your creative gig, you may actually be able to feed yourself when your modeling dreams go belly up. But know that you're giving up a whole lot of your creative bandwidth if you decide to pursue a legal education ... it's time consuming to say the least.

Are You Undecided?

One of the worst reasons to go to law school, apart from learning how to be a better criminal, is to figure out what you want to be when you grow up. Unless you're a child prodigy, if you're applying to law schools, you're grown enough. Law school is expensive. If you don't know whether being a lawyer is right for you, starting law school isn't the right way to find out.

Do You Enjoy Life?

If you like/enjoy your life, law school and lawyering may be a choice you'll want to reconsider, especially if you are not at home in academia. Sure, there are plenty of happy lawyers and law students out there, but on a whole, we're a miserable lot of professionals and too many of us end up as alcoholics. The job often entails long hours, stressful situations, and being responsible for other human beings that can't follow rules.

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