Answering The ‘Now What’ Question For New Lawyers


You passed the Bar exam! Yes, you! Maybe, it’s the overachiever in you, but the ringing question that never leaves you, no matter how hard you try is “now what?” You are an attorney! You now embody the oath and all that it stands for. You are now licensed to use your legal knowledge to serve and assist those who come to you, but “now what?”
If you were like me, you knew that upon graduation and studying for and passing the Bar exam, that your next step, after a clerkship stint, or working at a big firm, was hanging your own shingle.  So what do you do? After consulting with other senior attorneys, I knew that for me, joining a voluntary bar association would become high priority. Without hesitation, I promptly joined the Orange County Bar Association.

Within a month of joining this association, I was invited to attend their New Lawyer Orientation Program- designed for attorneys who have been practicing law for 3 years or less. The purpose of this program is to fill in the gap between law school and the initial throes of the practice of law. This program provides fundamentals to answer the “now what?” question.
During the two-day program, I underwent intensive training, met fellow young lawyers, toured the Orange County Courthouse, listened to presentations by the Chief Judge and the Clerk of the Court, participated in a Q&A panel with judicial assistants, and learned about how to be professional and astute when appearing before judges in court.
The training included how to avoid bar complaints from Florida Bar representatives and practical tips on how to start and maintain a solo practice from successful solo practitioners. I was also paired with a mentor, which has been the key to helping me with my solo law practice. My mentor was not only kind, and forthcoming with fantastic advice for running a solo practice, but he also committed to making himself available to me with any future questions I may have. He shared with me successful tips about malpractice insurance, and encouraged me in my solo practice endeavors. My mentor was enthusiastic and optimistic about my path. I learned that having financial resources and remaining positive is key when navigating the terrains of a new legal practice.
Thanks to this program, I was able to answer the “now what?” question. I have direction and purpose for the next step. If other young attorneys are asking the “now what?” question, my response is this New Lawyer Training Program. This program will supply you with all you need for the next best step.

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