According to this infographic from the Wall Street Journal,  “lawyer gluts” and the “dismal state of today’s job market”, a deeper examination of the actual numbers in this piece (completely unverified at the time of this blog's publication, I might add) could equally support the conclusion that the legal market is simply changing – breaking fee from its traditional trappings -- rather than drying up altogether.  This generation of law graduates need not focus on the adversity created by a lack of large to medium size firm openings, but take note of the numerous ways these same numbers identify other employment options and encourage you to make yourself marketable to the very outside forces that are allegedly squeezing the big/medium law firm jobs out. 

Globalization making an impact?  Go learn a second or third language targeting those exploding European/Asian/Middle Eastern markets.  Alternative legal service providers making a dent in the workload at large firms?  Make sure you seek out and target those service providers, as they need guess what as their business platforms expand?  That’s right, lawyers.  Trends suggesting boutique firms are the flavor of the day?  Narrow in through your extra-curricular activities in school on a practice area that interests you and supports a boutique practice, and then actively target those firms.  Don’t let these headlines discourage you – they are intended to be dramatic and attention-grabbing, just as with any other piece of journalism in today’s age.  These numbers aren’t a doomsday forecast – but they should be an encouragement to lay out your job strategy early, and to be flexible in your searches.  This “adversity” only primes you to become stronger lawyers/marketers/business-people. 

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As the BP oil spill continues to slip from daily consciousness along much of the Gulf Coast, Federal Authorities are quietly, but steadily, rebuilding levels of confidence in the quality of seafood now coming to market from Gulf waters.   Many concerned advocacy groups have spoken for months of their concerns regarding not just food contamination from the oil itself, but also potentially toxic levels of dispersant chemicals in the fish, oysters, crab, and shrimp found in open Gulf waters.  Recent testing designed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), however, continues to support the belief that commercial seafood is free from toxic levels of oil and dispersant residue.

Scientists continue to be amazed at the ability of fish, crustaceans, and shellfish to quickly clear dispersant from their tissues, and the results of testing 1,735 samples from all over the Gulf from June through September has merely added to the body of evidence supporting that conclusion.  Bottom line, while over 9,444 square miles of federal waters in the Gulf remain closed to commercial and recreational fishing (approximately, 4% of the Gulf), you apparently can order that Grouper, Tuna, Crab, or Oyster with peace of mind going forward.  While chemical and toxic tort litigation arising from the spill will unquestionably continue for quite some time, the breadth and scope of potential litigation areas appear to narrow as we learn more about the lasting impact of the spill.

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Categories: Food Safety

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