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CaseyLawSA

Law In The States

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Hi all.

 

I am Recently qualified with an LLB Law degree(SA) from the University of Pretoria. I am currently serving a compulsory one year period of Articles of Clerkship as a candidate attorney at a small law firm. Planning to complete the South African board exams in August and be admitted as an attorney next year. My deepest desire is to experience a new county in a permanent placement which will allow me to expand my law degree, even if that means doing the necessary conversion courses.

 

Is there any way i can practice law in the States after this year? and if so.. is there such thing as firms or companies willing to invest in or sponsor a South African that wants to move overseas and do the New York State Bar exam?

 

I am trying all my options and any help or advice will be greatly appreciated.

thanks

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Hi Casey, welcome to SAUSA. :)

 

This is a question you can ask Grant Kaplan, a former South African who practices law in Florida and who is an immigration expert. He will be the best person to ask for guidance.

 

I have not dealt with him personally, but I know from Facebook that many other South Africans have.

 

Best of luck.

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Is there any way i can practice law in the States after this year? and if so.. is there such thing as firms or companies willing to invest in or sponsor a South African that wants to move overseas and do the New York State Bar exam?

Unless you know a guy, who knows a guy, I think it will be very hard for you to achieve this. I'm not saying it is impossible, just very hard.

 

Think about it, why would a firm spend thousands of dollars to petition a young, inexperienced graduate (and wait many, many months, if not years, before you can start to work because that is how long a H1B visa takes, for example) while there are hundreds of people right here in the USA, with US law degrees, that can start to work tomorrow and who don't need to be sponsored?

 

Don't be disheartened by my comment - I just think you need to acquire some unique skill that would make a potential employer want to hire you. Also, as Janneman suggested, reach out to others who have already done what you want to do and get sound advice from them.

 

In the meantime you could consider going to places that are "easier" to get into like the UK or Australia and get some international experience and whatever else will increase your marketability.

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Supercruz; you are spot on. It is better to tell the truth as it is. Casey, take Janneman's advice. Can I add something, South African degrees are not worth that much in the US unless they are topped up with a US degree or some other qualification and/or experience. I am not discouraging you, but the route you are about to take is going to be a hard and painful one. I can only wish you good luck......Contact Grant Kaplan as Janneman suggested.

Edited by shatale

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