Law Students

New Jersey Produces Surplus Lawyers: The Most in 6 Years
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The 670 New Jersey lawyers sworn in Tuesday, 500 of them at Trenton War Memorial, are a great increase in JDs in the employment pool, with a seventeen percent increase over last year – quite a figure, considering the legal market is at its worst at the moment.

Yet rather than being told to keep plucky and stay with it, the judges speaking to the students, as they took their oath, told them the only advice that could make for a strong law career.

  
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Chief Justice Stuart Rabner encouraged the lawyers to represent clients pro bono, and also told them to carry out their paid work “forcefully and professionally, all the while abiding by the highest ethical standards,” as NJ.com reported. This is in fact the best advice to give to a group of students who might be tempted to cut corners to get by in a difficult market.

Associate Justice Anne Patterson noted the plight of the students, saying, “We know how tough this legal market is, and how much harder it is to land a job in your generation than it was for us. New Jersey has more than 80,000 lawyers – that’s a lot of lawyers on paper. But you will find that in your world, your county courthouse, your practice area, your city, your town, the legal community in your bustling state is very small.”

Hitting the nail on the head, she warned of those who ended up disbarred by making small compromises. “They are often ordinary men and women who started out with good intentions but crossed a little line here and a little line there, initially unnoticed, in order to get or keep a client, or to win a hopeless case or to try to resolve a personal or financial crisis. If you are candid with everyone you deal with, you never have to worry about remembering what you said, you never have to worry about covering your tracks because you don’t have any tracks to cover, and you’ll never be disappointed in yourself.”

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It is proper to give moral advice to the demoralized, and if they but hold to principle, these group of lawyers will enjoy as successful careers as any, or perhaps better and nobler careers, because of the adversity they had to overcome in order to secure their positions. That is the basic moral lesson in all of life: when things come easy, we grow weak.





 

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