I gotta hand it to the ABA for keeping me up to date on the magnitude of the collapse of the legal job market with a constant stream of information about layoffs, layoffs, and more layoffs. Apparently, last Monday was another record-setting day for legal layoffs with more than 730 lawyers and staffers losing their jobs. This follows two other record-setting days on Jan. 29 and Feb. 12, with more than 600 lawyers and staffers laid off on those days.
People keep telling me that these people being laid off are not really competition for me; they are biglaw lawyers and I’m looking for a public defender position and these are totally different things. I see that point, but when these people can’t even give their time away I am certain there are public defenders out there who are looking at this and thinking, “Yeah, I was going to look for some other kind of work but I think I’ll keep my job for now until things look better.” This means fewer openings for me. There’s also likely some small fraction of the biglaw layoffs who are deciding that now is the time to change careers and become public defenders (or, possibly more likely, prosecutors). If so, that means more competition for what few positions do open.
I’m not whining, I’m just saying. I’m lucky enough to actually have an interview today, so things may be looking up… at least for me. Fingers crossed.