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Ann Bartow

Happy,
This is an interesting phenomenon, isn't it? One the one hand, I think that women get pushed into the less prestigious practice areas sometimes. On the other, once there is a core group of women in a particular practice area, that can become a magnet for other women in a positive way.

My concern is always the money. Even after controlling for hours worked/billed, certain specialties may be more highly compensated than others for no discernible reason other than gender. The idea that some work is "more complicated" is usually pretextual, in my view.

will

"Even after controlling for hours worked/billed, certain specialties may be more highly compensated than others for no discernible reason other than gender. "

Which specialties? I am curious about the basis for this statement.

Nicole Black

In my experience, I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that your nagging suspicions are correct, HF. Since this is posted under my "real" name, I'm not willing/able to go into the specifics for my assertion. But your story is a familiar one, and occurs in offices across this country on a daily basis. Women are predominantly found in certain areas of practice for any number of reasons, many of which you cited in this post.

Another reason that you didn't mention, since it's not relevant to your life at this point, is (big surprise here) kids. Many areas of practice are far more compatible with family life, and litigation is not one of them. As a result, many women either leave the law after kids, or switch to different practice areas that are transactional and thus more manageable.

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