The Corner

Law & the Courts

If You Think Law School Is a Scam, Try Cosmetology

Kim Kardashian apparently plans to follow in the career path of . . . Abraham Lincoln, and become a lawyer without going to law school. California is one of the few states in which the old method of becoming a lawyer — working as an apprentice, studying, and then passing the bar, without going to a formal law school — remains available.

In Slate, Mark Joseph Stern writes of these arrangements:

I wish more states would allow them. Law school is an exorbitant racket that condemns countless students to years, even decades, of crushing student debt. Many young lawyers fear they can only pay off this debt by entering big law, then wind up spending years in a corporate practice that is soulless at best and immoral at worst.

. . . Kardashian is not going to fix this nightmare. But apprenticeships do offer a much cheaper path for law-curious Americans who don’t wish to spend a large chunk of their careers paying off a mountain of student debt. If Kardashian inspires more people to “read law” in the states that permit it, she’ll deserve credit for challenging the law school monopoly, even just a little.

Hear, hear!

And if you think law school is a scam, consider having to take 1,500 hours of classes to braid hair.


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