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Fully second Till here. What Andrew describes may be the reality in the big international law firms. However most lawyers don't end up in big international law firms. Either because they did not want to or because they didn't have good enough exam grades.

Tens of thousands of German lawyers work in small law practices of one to five lawyers, either as "generalists" or in all kinds of niches. The reality is that even with disappointing grades you can still set up your own law practice, have no superiors and be "your own boss", and with skills and a bit of luck, make a decent living. Of course many of those small practices are not successful, but that is a risk that any small entrepreneur is taking.


I sort of disagree. While some of the bullets you list do describe my work experience in a German office of a magic circle firm, they are in no way true for 80 per cent of the lawyers in Germany. Your average German lawyer works alone or together with five or less other lawyers. Furthermore, while most graduates become attorneys, there are other career choices which definitely avoid the issues you list (such as having a safe, relaxing and boooooooring career in the administration).
You will notice that law school changes your way of thinking to a very analytical, somewhat schematic mindset, though, which can be an uncomfortable experience.
Oh yeah, and anyway - thanks to the no-minimum-wage-in-Germany Fleischfachverkäuferin for financing my law school, it was lovely to start out with a debt free six-figure-income :-)

Michael Cornelia

I have always dreamed of becoming a lawyer, however I think I wanted to become one because it sounded like a good idea. I think a lot of people today go to law school because they don't know what else to do with their life. My personal attorney, Francis S. Hallinan Esquire, informed me that going to law school is only a good idea if you have enough knowledge and understanding of what I am getting myself into. He is an amazing lawyer and I strive to be as good as him. To make a long story short, I chose to hold off on law school and do some research before I jump into it. It was some of the best advice I ever received in my entire life and I owe it all to my attorney.

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