By Dan Walters
Published: Wednesday, May. 22, 2013 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Wednesday, May. 22, 2013 – 12:07 pm
California, it’s now acknowledged, has a glut of lawyers.
Thousands of law school graduates cannot find jobs as law firms cut back, as government agencies are squeezed, as corporations trim legal expenses and as technology handles rote legal work.
A new report says that a sixth of California’s recent law school graduates are unemployed. The Los Angeles Times reported last month that some jobless lawyers are honing skills by suing schools for overpromising job prospects.
The lawyer glut is acknowledged by the State Bar, the quasi-public entity that licenses lawyers, regulates their behavior and acts as a trade association for the legal profession.
Joseph Dunn, the former state senator who runs the State Bar, told the Times that while the state had seen lawyer gluts in the past, “I don’t think any of them rival the situation we are seeing today.”
Dunn’s remarks struck many in the Capitol as ironic since as a legislator, Dunn made herculean efforts to get a new law school at the University of California, Irvine.
The State Bar appears to be doing more about the glut than wringing its institutional hands. It’s sponsoring legislation that could eliminate some competition from providers of do-it-yourself legal forms.
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