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Author Topic: 5yr lit associate trying to lateral needs serious advice  (Read 1137 times)


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Hi all. I'm a 5yr lit associate working at a general practice firm that's well known for IP lit. I'm in DC and looking to stay. I'd like to lateral because, frankly, I think my prospects for advancement at my current firm are limited by the fact that I'm tied to the area and the DC office is a forgotten satellite within the firm.

The deal is that I don't seem to be having a lot of luck and could use advice on improving my candidacy. My strengths are that I work for a good firm and have been moderately successful in district court litigation, IPRs (though not as much as I would like), and have a small prosecution client that I manage myself (was a prosecutor for several years). Have a PhD in applied physics. Negatives are that I'm old (nearing mid 40s), not an electrical engineer, and didn't go to amazingly great law school or do that well (middle of class at ass end of T14). Also not super good-looking or anything.

Any advice on how to improve? Should I look outside DC?


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Re: 5yr lit associate trying to lateral needs serious advice
« Reply #1 on: 07-01-17 at 12:08 am »

I feel like there should be plenty of work for someone like you in DC.  But you need to start looking out or down.  Meaning, look outside of law firms, like in house.  Use networking and contacts and current clients.  I know a lot of biglaw types that did kind of the "5 years at big firm and transition to in house at client of big firm now managing the new people at the big firm."  As far as "down," look at small-mid sized firms.  If you're not progressing to partnership at your firm, you probably won't at another firm.  Which is fine.  Also, with small-mid sized firms, there are tons in and near DC.  I like some out in Reston, or even "satellite" offices to big DC firms that are 40 minutes outside DC.  Good luck!
This comment: does not represent the opinion or position of the PTO or any law firm; is not legal advice; and represents only a few quick thoughts from the author, not a well-researched treatise.  Seek out the advice of a competent patent attorney for answers to specific questions you may have.


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