Sunday, August 10, 2008

Model Law Firm Rejection Letter, and a Classic Practical Joke

Posted by Alan Childress

Beyond our previous posts here and here on [true] rejection letters from law firms, consider this model response letter published in '05 by Harvard Law Record:

Dear  Ms./Mr. My Firm is Too Good For You:

Thank you very much for your recent letter explaining that, despite the fact I am a wonderful person and will likely win the Nobel Prize for Law someday, you were not able to offer me a callback interview and/or a position as a Summer Associate. I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your refusal to offer me a position as a Summer Associate/callback interview.

This year I have received an unusually large number of rejection letters, making it impossible for me to accept them all. Despite your outstanding experience in rejecting applicants, your refusal does not meet my needs at this time.1038491_envelope_srb

Therefore, I shall initiate employment with your firm in May of 2006.  Best of luck in rejecting future candidates.


Harvard Law Student

Students at other schools have posted their favorite rejection letters they actually received for law jobs.  See Barely Legal's here, a commenter elsewhere here, and a whole site devoted to this topic at rejectionletters[dot]net.  One firm "won" a contest for its letter, here.  A mass email rejection of all named candidates (duly listed in the TO: field) is the subject of an Above The Law post last August.  >>> After the jump, read about a nice practical joke at UNC involving rejection letters.

This lawhaha legal humor site does, despite that name, have a great story about a practical joke two roomies played on a third at UNC:

They started intercepting his mail at home; specifically, his law firm rejection letters. They would steam open the letters and add "personal" handwritten notes from the interviewer at the end.
     Things like:
     "You may want to consider getting a better haircut."
     "You had a weak handshake."
     "You need to sit up straight and not cross your legs."
     "Don't look me straight in the eyes. That makes me nervous"
     "Need to look interviewers straight in the eye." 
     "You should use better deodorant."
     "Were you hitting on me?" 
     Etc., etc. The best part was that the other two guys also put personal notes on their rejection letters so that the roommate thought it was a normal, common practice.

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» Rejection letter stories - what is your beststory? from Voir Dire
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Tracked on Aug 10, 2008 3:13:56 PM


As a 3L I was called in for an interview with a then-august, now-dissolved major international firm. I hadn't sought the interview; they'd invited me because I was writing for a law journal. Despite that, they asked me for a writing sample, which I duly submitted. I got neither a callback nor a rejection letter. About four or five months later, I was surprised to find an envelope from the firm in my mail. It was my resume and writing sample, returned without cover letter.

Posted by: A.J. Sutter | Aug 10, 2008 6:25:35 PM

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