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Recent Law School Graduates are facing an Increase in Student Loan Debt and a Decrease in Jobs

A study conducted by William Henderson of Indiana University Maurer School of Law showed that in 2011 only 55 percent of law school graduates were working in law-related jobs, nine months after graduation. Last year 43,735 students graduated with a law degree, of which 28 percent were either unemployed or underemployed after graduation.
Many law school graduates have experienced trouble finding work in the legal field since 2004, before the housing market crashed and the recession hit. The demand for new lawyers added up to only half of the number of those who passed bar exams in 2009.
The issue involving the over-abundance of law school graduates having difficulty finding jobs in their field is not expected to change, even if the economic state of the United States is healed. Many companies are outsourcing legal needs to countries such as India that have ‘smarter’ software. A number of American clients believe countries with such software have a more efficient process. Deans from colleges and universities are openly acknowledging that legal education is experiencing an ‘existential crisis.’
The economic problems extend much further than students finding law-related jobs. Many former law students are now facing problems paying back their student loans due to ‘high-priced degrees.’ Law students are settling for lower paying jobs for which they are over-qualified for, and as a result, many are defaulting on their student loan payments.
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