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GoldieO
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^ Understood. And maybe I should move this discussion to TSB, but I'm essentially trying to determine if I'm the only one questioning mandatory guild membership - especially at the local level. What other profession mandates you be a member of some local chapter of your state guild under threat of losing your ability to earn an income, i.e., suspending my license if I don't pay Mecklenburg County $225.00 by Sept. 30.

I derive absolutely no tangible benefit from being a member of the Mecklenburg County Bar, none, yet I'm supposed to continually pay them annual dues so they can fund a basketball and softball league, and holiday parties and luncheons? How does any of this "improve and preserve the administration of justice..." per their mission statement?

8/26/2014 9:08:54 AM

CaelNCSU
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http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2011/01/are_law_schools_lying_to_their.html

Quote :
"It's worth asking why Wallerstein chose a JD as a back-up identity, and not an MD or a PhD. Can we agree it was easier? Why not an MBA? Because an MBA is for something else; a law degree is a brand in itself. You can get an MBA and still be nothing unless you find a job. Get a law degree, you're always a lawyer.

It's probably the same reason he didn't try some other hail mary like, say, borrow $200k and just open up a coffeeshop or become a daytrader. You could fail at those. Graduate from law school-- and everybody does-- and you can't possibly fail. (Surprise.)"

8/26/2014 1:37:08 PM

jbrick83
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^
1) An article like that has come out just about every month for the past three or four years.

2) That's probably one of the worst I've read on the subject....and I've read a lot.

8/26/2014 2:25:04 PM

CaelNCSU
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What's bad about it? Are you claiming there aren't lots of people searching for identity with no marketable skills? Or that law schools aren't taking advantage of those people because they'll never pay back the loans--leaving us with marketable skills to foot the bill?

He's just as hard on regular college as he is on law school.

[Edited on August 26, 2014 at 5:27 PM. Reason : a]

8/26/2014 5:26:52 PM

jbrick83
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I don't disagree with most of it...other than the fact that it's re-hashing a subject/article that's probably been written a hundred times in the last five years.

I just think it was poorly written.

8/27/2014 12:26:19 AM

TGD
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Unofficial bar pass rates for July 2014:

Quote :
"Statewide average for first-time takers: 70.64%

Ranked by school -
(1) UNCCH: 86.79%
(2) Campbell: 85.61%
(3) Duke: 79.17%
(4) Wake Forest: 78.95%
(5) NCCU: 75.79%
(6) Elon: 69.01%
(7) Charlotte: 55.98%"

8/31/2014 11:46:46 AM

jbrick83
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Ouch Charlotte. How low can it get before the ABA comes back?

9/1/2014 9:49:57 AM

ThatGoodLock
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god damnit, Elon. You couldn't even best the state average which Charlotte almost singlehandedly brought embarrassingly low. We recently fired Dean of Admissions, Careers Services, and Student Affairs and hired two recent Alum to two of six new positions. We already hired a dedicated bar specialist who took a school in CA from 60 to 90% passage.

There should be a 7 in front of any self-respecting school's numbers. 1 in 4 should fail at the most.

In other news, moving to Durham and accepted a staff job with Legal Aid! IBR + NC LEAF = suck it to every person who sent me articles like the one above month after month. I'm not making it rain but I'm not drowning in debt either.

9/1/2014 10:10:12 PM

TGD
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lol yeah IBR makes life easier, even if you're in private practice -- congrats on the job, and welcome to the Bull City!

9/6/2014 8:38:32 PM

GoldieO
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Worth making it to the end.

http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/08/the-law-school-scam/375069/

I had no idea Charlotte had lowered their admissions standards so far. I think it's safe to say we'll continue to see application at these lower tier schools fall and many will end up shutting their doors.

9/21/2014 10:07:37 PM

jbrick83
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Any solo or small firm attorneys in here use a Website/SEO company to generate new business??

I'm looking to take on an attorney that specifically does Workers Comp. He does defense work and is going to bring over a few big clients from his current firm, but we ultimately want to start building a Workers Comp Plaintiff's firm. We've both been researching law firm marketing companies and are trying to figure out if they're worth it. My brief research has come up with mixed results and I just had lunch with a good law school friend yesterday who said his money was completely wasted on one.

Anyone have any personal experiences?? The few companies I'm looking at would build and manage my website, handle the SEO and update the logarithms, and also write blogs and post articles on the website (that relate to Workers Comp). It's not a cheap investment and I'd like to get a few more firsthand stories before taking the dive.

11/25/2014 10:36:16 AM

TGD
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Paying for SEO is a waste of $$. Not sure how your website is structured, but you can use a WordPress base with a slick GUI on top for free/cheap (see e.g. StudioPress and their Genesis framework), and any nicer design needs can be contracted out via elance.org

As for content, you can pay people to do it for you -- but you'll get better results doing it yourself. Even if it's just an hour a day for writing.

11/26/2014 9:45:12 PM

aaronburro
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heh, update the logarithms. that's gotta be autocorrect

[Edited on November 30, 2014 at 12:25 AM. Reason : ]

11/30/2014 12:24:46 AM

jbrick83
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Quote :
"but you can use a WordPress base with a slick GUI on top for free/cheap (see e.g. StudioPress and their Genesis framework), and any nicer design needs can be contracted out via elance.org"


Might as well be a different language to me. That's why I'm looking for someone else to do it.

12/1/2014 9:49:20 AM

terpball
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Quote :
"Any solo or small firm attorneys in here use a Website/SEO company to generate new business??

I'm looking to take on an attorney that specifically does Workers Comp. He does defense work and is going to bring over a few big clients from his current firm, but we ultimately want to start building a Workers Comp Plaintiff's firm. We've both been you researching law firm marketing companies and are trying to figure out if they're worth it. My brief research has come up with mixed results and I just had lunch with a good law school friend yesterday who said his money was completely wasted on one.

Anyone have any personal experiences?? The few companies I'm looking at would build and manage my website, handle the SEO and update the logarithms, and also write blogs and post articles on the website (that relate to Workers Comp). It's not a cheap investment and I'd like to get a few more firsthand stories before taking the dive."


I've tried everything. I've learned that different things work for different people who practice different shit. If I were you, I'd just try to maintain ownership of the site. If you are talking to Scorpion Design or anyone like that, they will own your site, and if you ever want to go a different direction, your site will disappear.

12/18/2014 2:34:29 PM

BiggzsIII
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Looking to get involved in the Durham area with other Attorneys. Recently moved to Durham...trying to see what options/career opportunites are available in the area for non-litigating attorneys.


III

1/26/2015 3:44:01 PM

TGD
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Haha not sure I can help you there, I'm in Durham but litigation is what I do. Durham's a good place to be though -- what type of law are you doing?

[Edited on February 3, 2015 at 10:39 PM. Reason : ---]

2/3/2015 10:37:15 PM

jbrick83
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Quote :
"I've tried everything. I've learned that different things work for different people who practice different shit. If I were you, I'd just try to maintain ownership of the site. If you are talking to Scorpion Design or anyone like that, they will own your site, and if you ever want to go a different direction, your site will disappear."


The company I'm looking at now will host my site, but the contract strictly states that if I leave, then they will "assist me" in moving it back to another host. I'm going to get them to go into more detail, basically, "they will move everything and make sure it looks and operates exactly the same with the new host". But hopefully it works out and I won't be moving.

I'm definitely leaning towards PPC. Originally thought I'd be going with SEO, but the prices are much higher, the wait for results is much longer (which makes the prices even higher), and the results still seem "iffy". Their PPC plan also gives me a thirty day trial to see what kind of traffic we can generate.

Seeing that I get zero traffic from my website to begin with, I feel like at the very least I should be able see results soon or cut ties before i spend too much money.

3/4/2015 11:02:41 AM

ThatGoodLock
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bar exam passage is brutal these days...I can't imagine spending 3 years and then not passing on 1st (at least, 2nd) time and yet I know several people on 4th or 5th tries

4/16/2015 7:41:11 AM

jbrick83
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Just a random guess...but I think less "smart" people are going to law school. And you've got new law schools and Infilaw type-schools (shudder...they're very close to taking over my school) that are accepting really really subpar students who have slim chance of passing the bar. It's become a ridiculously sad state of affairs.

There hasn't been one kid who's asked me about law school that I've actually recommended it as a good option. I tell them to run as far away as possible...and I'm actually doing pretty well!



On another note. I'm about to start a Google adword campaign (tied in with my post above). The more I researched, the less SEO made sense for me...at least in the beginning. SEO work is much more expensive and takes longer to see results. With the adwords I'm hoping that because I'm in a smaller market (Charleston...as opposed to a NYC, DC, Chicago, ATL, Charlotte, etc), and I'm focusing on slightly more of a niche practice (Workers' Comp instead of PI, Criminal, or Domestic), that I can get some decent ROI.

Either way...fingers crossed. I've been hovering at the same level for a few years now and really want to jump to the "next level". Word of mouth marketing can only get you so far in a saturated market.

4/16/2015 8:57:12 AM

Agent 0
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Two obnoxious things about the NY Bar Exam:

1)

Quote :
"The Board suggests that you contact your travel agent or visit the Visitors and Convention Bureau of the location where you will be taking the examination for information concerning hotel and travel arrangements. "


2)

NY doesn't let out-of-state applicants sit in Manhattan, which would be an easy 4 hour train ride. Instead, I have to either sit in Albany (8 hour train ride) or Buffalo (1.5 hour flight) and they won't tell anyone where they're going until like two weeks out.

4/16/2015 10:13:12 AM

jbrick83
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^ Thats fucking ridiculous.

And congrats on the job and for being on TV recently...BALLER!!!

4/16/2015 11:05:59 AM

Agent 0
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haha thanks.

word on a few message board threads i saw was that sometimes out-of-staters get dumped into manhattan, and that sometimes they get the site info out in june, but even then, that's just a little over a month out. obnoxious to have to buy expensive flight/train tickets.

4/16/2015 12:52:52 PM

stategrad100
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Hey guys recently passed the Florida exam. Anyone got any insight on how that translates to NC? Real world experiences only please if anyone has experience using reciprocity to translate the score into NC. I am aware of the Google-able information but want the real deal. How stringent is the clearance process in NC? How is the job market? Anyone in here come from Fl to Nc before?

4/21/2015 10:59:20 AM

jbrick83
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Did you know you wanted to move back to NC before you signed up/took the FL exam?? If so, then why not take the NC exam first?

I've heard the NC exam is one of the most difficult in the country (top 10 at least). I've also heard the job market is not good at all. Basically when you combine the shitty job market for attorneys with the opening of the new law schools (Elon and Charlotte....and the Charlotte one is just pumping out lawyers like no other)...you've got a pretty saturated market. Basically...I wouldn't even attempt to move back to NC to work as an attorney unless you have some really solid connections.

Anyways...I'm in SC, so my advice will pale in comparison to the NC attorneys on this board.

[Edited on April 21, 2015 at 11:06 AM. Reason : .]

4/21/2015 11:06:08 AM

stategrad100
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^ funny this is a little off topic but the Charlotte admissions dean is a real piece of work. He got canned from his job in Florida and I noted there has been much hilarity about charlotte's conduct on this board lately (for example LSAC spam 3 years too late)
Would not be surprised if the same guy was behind the same silly behavior except now he is no longer at Florida Coastal and doing it at Charlotte lol

4/21/2015 11:12:55 AM

jbrick83
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Well the same company owns both law schools. They're both just diploma mills.

4/21/2015 11:20:51 AM

stategrad100
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Ok well I went to neither of those schools so I guess I don't have to worry about it. Which would also explain why he was able to pack up and relocate so quickly. I had interaction with him when I was picking a law school in Florida and did not go with Enrolling at Florida Coastal. Which by the way is not on the coast at all.

4/21/2015 11:23:33 AM

jbrick83
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The bad thing is that they're just pumping out law school graduates in both locations. I think the class size at Charlotte is getting to over 400 students (maybe more?)...which is just ridiculous. I guess the good thing (for other attorneys seeking jobs), is that half of them can't pass the bar...so they're not taking up as many jobs as it would seem. But the ones that pass are taking up the crappy jobs that other attorneys would fall back on (even Document Review jobs, which some don't even require bar passage).

4/21/2015 12:07:10 PM

stategrad100
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Sorry, I don't mean to cause conflict but I have a fundamental disagreement with you.

I personally could care less if everyone in the country was a lawyer. It is that backwards thinking that law schools are "shitty" or that certain people "shouldn't be allowed" because they went to Cooley or whatever that is completely wrong with the profession.

I hope you never find yourself a member of any regulatory organization shitting on people who maybe didn't go to Harvard. Get over it and deal with the free market. Knowledge will not be restricted, and we will not become a classist society.

And yes I went to a good school and still feel this way.

4/21/2015 12:18:23 PM

jbrick83
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I'm not shitting on lower tier law schools (I went to one)...just those schools owned by Infilaw. You need to get your panties out of a wad and read up on those schools.

They're accepting kids who have little-to-no chance of passing the bar exam...but they're squeezing hundreds of thousands of federally backed loan dollars out of them. It's a racket and no one is doing anything to stop it.

[Edited on April 21, 2015 at 12:23 PM. Reason : .]

4/21/2015 12:22:59 PM

stategrad100
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Go figure, the guy who self-admittedly went to a "lower tier law school" is self-loathing.

You should have a higher opinion of yourself and start your own firm or something.

It's really cool that you value the US News and World Report rankings as the gold standard of your professional value. Last time I checked the USNWR magazine was bedside reading for fat soccer moms. Cool. And this determines the "worth" of your law school.

4/21/2015 12:25:30 PM

jbrick83
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Holy shit.....

4/21/2015 12:31:07 PM

stategrad100
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That's right

Fuck USNWR; (haters)


Yes to the ABA and Yes to the People who believe in the future of making legal assistance more affordable

4/21/2015 12:35:09 PM

jbrick83
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And fuck actually reading people's posts!!

4/21/2015 12:41:51 PM

stategrad100
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I didn't read what you said but I agree.

4/21/2015 1:01:24 PM

jbrick83
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Are you working anywhere in Florida?

I had an attorney from Florida sitting beside me during the SC exam. He was completely flummoxed. But I think his issues had more to do with the fact that he had been practicing for 20+ years and practical law has no place in the bar exam (just like you can't really find it in law school). It was his 2nd time taking it...and I don't think it went well.

I don't care if its Harvard or Cooley...I just wish law schools would teach the actual practice of law. I think there should be two years of studying the basics/structure of law...then two years of focusing on a particular are of law combined with interning/actual work for an attorney/law firm. A "residency" for lawyers, so to speak. You should be able to graduate law school and be able to handle a divorce/real estate transaction/criminal trial/etc.

4/21/2015 1:16:24 PM

GoldieO
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Just a reminder, I live in Mecklenburg County, NC and my local bar violates my freedom of association by forcibly extracting annual tribute from me simply because I wish to practice the profession of law. I receive no benefit from my local guild. I do not want to be a member of this guild. No other lawyers I speak with seem to be opposed to this arrangement. Bringing this back to the topic at hand, I, too, graduated from an unranked law school.

4/22/2015 8:08:17 PM

Beethoven
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I am not sure why this devolved into a discussion on low/high tier law schools, when the discussion was just that the influx of new law schools in NC have created an over abundance of law degrees that don't necessarily equate to lawyers better equipped to pass the bar. I read an article the other day on how the bar exam in NC must be getting more difficult, based simply on the lowering passage rate, and that they needed to find a way to open the profession to more eligible candidates. But if the pass rates are roughly the same for schools like UNC/Duke/Wake/UNC-Central/Campbell, then you have to think that maybe the exam isn't getting harder, but perhaps people aren't as adequately prepared. The biggest culprit of that is Charlotte School of Law.

Let's look at last year's passage rates:

UNC: 87% (138 of 159)
Campbell: 86% (119 of 139)
Wake Forest: 79% (75 of 95)
Duke: 79% (19 of 24)
N.C. Central: 76% (72 of 95)
Elon: 69% (49 of 71)
Charlotte Law School: 56% (103 of 184)
NC Total: 75% (575 of 767)

Here is the article I was referencing: http://www.wral.com/bar-exam-failure-rates-rising-nationwide-and-in-nc/14558754/

But if you look at the first time passage rates for law schools in 2003 (before Charlotte or Elon), they are 73% for the state as a whole, that's pretty close to where we are today, so is the bar really becoming more difficult to pass?

Granted, law schools are not all about passing the bar or entering the legal profession, but can you really justify having a 56% bar passage rate with an estimated cost of attendance at $194,000.00? What else do you offer those students that overcomes that risk? I have yet to meet anyone in the legal profession that thought Charlotte School of Law was a benefit to the profession, so why does it exist? If they exist solely to earn money and not to provide quality attorneys for the state, then why do people attend?

This is not a knock at lower tiered schools, but specifically at the for profit system jbrick was discussing above. If you're paying almost $200k for an education with a 50% chance of entering in the field you desire, that doesn't bode well for your critical thinking skills.

4/23/2015 9:49:16 AM

jbrick83
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^ Thanks for putting the numbers and a more drawn out argument to what I was trying to say. That was getting frustrating.

Infilaw is trying to take over my law school and everyone is fighting it pretty hard...with the exception of two of the founders that will be making a shit ton of money off of it if it goes through. The main founder who put all the money in is trying to take it the non-profit route but is out-numbered 2-1.

Regardless...I've read a ton of shit on Infilaw in the past year and they are horrible (but extremely rich!).

4/23/2015 10:02:35 AM

Beethoven
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One article I was reading said a prospective dean was interviewing for the position at an Infilaw campus, and part of his faculty presentation included the pitch that they are doing the students a disservice by accepting people with less than 145 LSAT scores and they have no reasonable expectation of passing the Bar. Apparently he was escorted off the campus pretty quickly.

4/23/2015 10:54:14 AM

jbrick83
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^ That was at the Florida Coastal school I believe. The crazy shit that goes on with the faculty at those schools is scary. They must pay well or people are just desperate for a teaching job...because I can't imagine wanting to teach at one of their schools or having your resume tainted with an Infilaw school. Whatever the desire it, it must not last long...because their staff turnover is ridiculous.

4/23/2015 10:57:35 AM

stategrad100
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Perhaps an interluding hypothetical may be appropriate here


young urbanite grows up disadvantaged family with crackhead prostitute mother and unknown father

he struggles in school being an illegal alien who does not speak english but manages to get a 145 on his LSAT

he gets into an "unranked school" and manages to graduate

he passes the bar on his third try

he becomes successful and helps other disadvantaged crackhead prostitute children and makes the world a better place




that crackhead is me



So who are you people to try to throttle back on who gets to be a lawyer? Pompous suburban "I know what's best for everyone" ideologies are what keeps America trending toward classist oblivion. Step outside your USNWR notions of who should pass the bar and what "markets [are] inundated"

4/23/2015 2:27:14 PM

Beethoven
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No one is saying there should be a restriction on what types of people are allowed to pass the bar. What is being said is where is the value of a program that has a 50% passage rate and charges so much money? Does it put out qualified candidates?

Are you really cut out to be an attorney if you 1) Can't get a 145 on the LSAT 2) Have to pay $200k to go to law school and 3) Take the Bar 3 times to pass it?

Where are you going to get a job? Who is going to pay off that debt? Can you not save those crackhead prostitute children without spending $200k on a degree that may never pay off?

Although, I am seriously impressed that an illegal alien who doesn't speak English even sits for the LSAT and can manage to pass the courses at Charlotte School of Law. Doesn't that say something for the caliber of the degree if you don't have to speak the same language to pass?

[Edited on April 23, 2015 at 3:08 PM. Reason : ]

4/23/2015 3:05:45 PM

stategrad100
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Based on the above post I now reasonably believe we have formed an attorney client relationship and that you are racist.

4/23/2015 3:33:12 PM

Beethoven
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Where in my post is race even mentioned?

4/23/2015 3:38:24 PM

stategrad100
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thinking about work on the way to work....1billable hour
Taking a ministerial phone call from a client about what form to fill out....2hrs

Taking yourself too seriously.......priceless

4/23/2015 3:56:06 PM

Beethoven
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Jokes on you! I don't bill hours!

4/23/2015 3:57:00 PM

stategrad100
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Sorry thats right...doc review sweatshop

4/23/2015 4:05:57 PM

Beethoven
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No, I think you missed the part where I didn't go to Charlotte School of Law.

4/23/2015 4:27:38 PM

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