How Many Law School Graduates are Employed?

Every year thousands of students need to contemplate whether or not to pursue a career in law. Many law schools state that their students are employed after graduation, but they tend to exaggerate the truth. Law schools claim that upwards of 95% of their students are employed after graduation, this is not true. In reality about 50%, if that, are hired after graduating.

The problem with many magazines and reports is that they do not factor in that many people who are employed after graduation are working part-time or find jobs outside out law. When these two factors are calculated into the 95% employment after graduation, it brings the percentage down about 30%.

There are only two main sources to find the employment information for post law school grad students. The first, U.S. News and World Report (USNWR), which publishes its statistics annually. The USNWR has been known to exclude those post graduate students who are unemployed and not seeking work. This will make it seem like some law schools have a higher post graduate employment rate.

The second, National Association for Law Placement (NALP). Although NALP does have a lower post law school graduate percentage, it is also known to include those employed with non-legal jobs and those doing part-time work. When you exclude graduates with these jobs, the employment percentage post law school drops about 30%.

All of this being said, although many people rely on the top reports and magazines, you need to understand what is behind their statistics. If their list for post graduate employment includes those people who are working part-time or have jobs outside of law, you need to think about if it is worth it. If you do not have someone paying your way through school, you can end up more than $300,000 in debt by the time you graduate. Those people who did not attain a position in their field are probably not making the amount of money they originally went to law school to get.