The Manhattan and Brooklyn district attorneys; New York City’s corporation counsel; deans and leaders of Columbia, Harvard, Georgetown, CUNY and Cardozo Law Schools; law firm leaders from Paul Weiss, Simpson Thacher, Skadden Arps and Freshfields; the chief in-house counsel from BNY Mellon, Morgan Stanley, Pfizer, Xerox and Con Ed; and the heads of The Legal Aid Society and Legal Services of New York are among those convening at the New York City Bar Association to address what City Bar President Carey Dunne has described as the “plight of young lawyers.”
Noting that recent ABA statistics show that only 55 percent of recent law graduates found full-time legal employment and that clients increasingly are unwilling to have new lawyers staffed on their matters, Dunne said, “Too many law graduates face diminished opportunities to launch their careers and fear they will never get on track. Even those who are employed are justifiably worried about their longer-term prospects for a productive and satisfying career in the law. Whether these recent changes are temporary or reflect a more fundamental shift in the structure and operation of the legal profession, the time has come for the leaders of our profession to respond.”
The New York City Bar Association’s Task Force on New Lawyers in a Changing Profession will be led by City Bar vice president Mark Morril, who said, “The group we have assembled has the depth and breadth of experience necessary to assess the problem and the leadership position to be heard on significant recommendations for change if they are warranted.”
Members of the task force will convene in September and plan to issue a report next summer. The group also expects to add several law students and new lawyers to its ranks.