Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Wall Street Journal Gives A Shout Out to The Doc. Review Chain Gang

"Over a drink recently, the Law Blog was regaled with a horrific tale of document review drudgery. A fellow law school graduate, who began legal life at a large firm before moving to an in-house job, recounted the story of a 13-month long, full-time doc review he participated in as a junior associate working on a bank fraud case. Reportedly, the doc review team — sedentary for so long — would conduct late-night cartwheel contests in the hallways to expend the pent-up energy they didn’t have time to burn elsewhere. Most of those on the team who didn’t wear glasses before the doc review marathon began needed them by the time it was over.

The story was neither easy to tell nor easy to hear. We cast our eyes downward and ordered another drink.

It reminded the Law Blog of our own doc review war story, which seems tame by comparison. It was a bleak February and, feeling restless, we volunteered — please, don’t ask — to help out on a doc review for a trademark litigation that sounded interesting. What followed was four weeks of sixteen-hour-days clicking away on a computer program whose name we’ve blocked from memory. In fact, we’ve tried hard to block the whole four weeks from memory.

LB loyals, we know there are doc review warriors out there. And we also know that sharing traumatic stories is often the first step in the healing process. Now that we’re half-way through February, let’s bring some levity to this darkest of months. Send us your horror stories, and please, spare no details!

Of course, feel free to post a comment. Additionally, we’d encourage those of you with especially detailed (or lengthy) tales to send them to We’ll look ‘em over and if we get anything especially good, we can run them out in separate posts. Happy Presidents’ Day!"


Anonymous said...

Attorneys who graduated across all tiers of law schools are having difficulty finding jobs. Due to tort reform and big business lobby, the job prospects for attorneys are horrible. Couple that with a record number of law schools pumping out a record number of attorneys, and the job market gets worse. Something has to break, and I predict that 2008 will be the year this happens. Once Democrats are elected back into office, more litigation will spawn as a result.

Anonymous said...

What? Do you really think Hillary or Oboma will help the market for attorneys? They will promise the world to get elected, handouts and payoffs to every constituency. But ultimately by overtaxing they will destroy what's left of the economy.

But aside from that, the real issue is not the dems or repubs, it's the fact that the entry level jobs are being offshored, so you're competing against a silent foe for many of the jobs that should be available in the US. That's the real issue, there is no job growth in the US.

There are still many, many tort cases and suits against big business. There just aren't many good starting jobs in the law, so must of us are dumped into doc review, at the mercy of the agencies.

Like Hillary and Obama are selling you now, you were sold a false dream by the law school industry, one that never existed for 95% of law graduates. It's a sorry situation, but allowing politicians to manipulate you with further false promises, will only compound your difficulties.

My advice is to switch careers and fast. Even if you get a great law job, you will still probably be miserable. Find something you like to do and find interesting.

Remember, both Hillary and Obama are lawyers. They are among the fe w that found good law jobs and good careers. They won't have any sympathy for us and will do nothing for you, except spout false promises to buy votes. Congress now has lower approval rates than Bush! Do think a neophyte like Obama has any chance of accomplishing anything for his first 3 years in office? Certainly not help for laywers!

Anonymous said...

I agree with 12:21. Obama and Hillary will actually make things worse for young lawyers. In the guise of providing greater opportunity for minorities and the lower class, either candidate will greatly increase access to federal student loans. This will allow TTT schools to further inflate tuition and leave young lawyers entrapped in a web of soul crushing debt. Wake up America! You are being sold a bag of false goods by the politicians and teacher unions.

Anonymous said...

Yes, you people have it figured out. It's all the liberals' fault! Elect John McCain-- he will save the document reviewers! Can we leave political discussions off this board and focus on what it specializes in-- self-loathing, self-pity and bile?!?

Anonymous said...

Scott Krowshitz is a slimy sleazebag who will thrust himself into a traffic laden freeway in order to collect a nickel!

Anonymous said...

"Temporary legal work is a great opportunity for those who graduate from law school without a job offer," says Scott Krowitz, a partner in the temporary placement firm Lexolutions. "The work gives young lawyers exposure to the practice of law and creates new networking opportunities. And temp-to-perm (temporary to permanent) positions can lead to permanent jobs that might not have been available to these attorneys through the usual recruiting channels."

My favorite line from above is: "The work gives young lawyers exposure to the practice of law and creates networking opportunities."

Anonymous said...

Yeah, great networking opportunities - getting treated like dogs*#t by temp agencies that routinely lie to you and law firms that treat you like diseased cattle.

Talk about dressing up a turd! SK should be placed on the board of directors or NYLS, Hofstra or Seton Hall, he puts such a large % of their grads to work!

Anonymous said...

Krowitz is a disgusting piece of filth, who puts profit before all else. He constantly lies, puts on sham "marketing" campaigns, and won't hesitate to write you off in a second if you in anyway question the abusive tactics of his lowlife biglaw clients.

Anonymous said...


there is a link on crooks & liars website.

doc review is arguably not that bad in the bigger scheme of things. it's decent wage for easy (albeit useless and tedious) work.

BUT the real issue is collusion between ABA, law schools, lenders and large law firms to manufacturer "doc monkeys" and financially benefit by manipulating salary and employment figures and not telling the students about reality - competition, low salary,practices of education lenders, outsourcing of doc review, small firms being squeezed out, lack of benefits for contract attorneys, etc, etc...

Anonymous said...

Right, what we are calling for a moratorium on all new ABA law school accreditations; Honest employment figures that reflect the number of temps working in the large firms as compared to staff attorneys and associates. Perhaps Seton Hall, Hofstra and other schools can list the prestigious temp agencies where the bulk of their recent grads work: Lex, Peak, Update, Strategic etc.. I would guess that the temp workers they outnumber the associate and staff attorney jobs by a multiple 5; We would also like to see the ABA and state bars take action to protect our jobs against offshoring.

Also, it's critical that every person contemplating going into substantial debt to go law school be provided with accurate information, upon which to make the most important decision of their lives. There is just no reason to attend a TTT and assume this massive debt.

Anonymous said...

Haha well Drexel law school just achieved provisional accrededation in Philly, so that's more doc review attorneys for the legal market here. So much for a moratorius! Looks like the ABA is going full-steam ahead with new schools.

Anonymous said...

I have been considering law school. I am a journalist, love what I do, but there is no money in it. Even if I graduate from a pathetic law school would I not make a lot more money?? Any advice.

Anonymous said...

Dear Journalist:

Yes. You can make more money. However, figure in the down time of three years of law school and the tuition costs.

Law is a good choice for some. I have been practicing for nearly 15 years and, although I get a kick out of this web site, have never worked in document review.

The key questions you need address include wheter you are prepared to enter an essentially self employed profession with a high burn out rate. If your goal is to be a wage slave and get a regular pay check, I suggest you go another route.

Seriously, write me at if you wish to discuss this further.

Anonymous said...

Journalist, I suggest that you get a job as a paralegal, and then decide if you should get a J.D. 'Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?' Too many people make an investment in education for a specific field before determining if it is the right field for them to be in. Do not make that mistake with a J.D.

Anonymous said...

If anyone feels that their law school pushed them to use a particular lender or faked employment statistics to induce enrollment please complain to the U.S. department of educations ombudsman's office.

U.S. Department of Education
FSA Ombudsman
830 First Street, NE
Fourth Floor
Washington, DC 20202-5144

Phone number


Larry Nyls said...

I'll contact them right away. All I got from NYLS was a crap encrusted diploma which wasn't even good enough to wipe myself with. Believe me, I tried.

Res Ipsa Loquitor said...

Hey that happened with mine too! What a jip!

I think all NYLS graduates who got a diploma they couldn't even wipe their ass with should band together, sign a petition and deliver it to "Dean" Matasar (er Matador).

Anonymous said...

Lol, did you read the long winded garbage that Dean wrote, bragging about his nephew @ Eton? Even the preteen nephew is aware what a toilet the law school he works for is! LOL!