What kind of jobs are uniquely tailored to a JD/MBA?
January 16, 2009 3:17 PM   Subscribe

What kind of jobs are open only to a JD/MBA, or would be likely to express a strong preference to someone with both degrees? I have a general idea, but I'm looking for specific examples so I could justify (or, if there are few/no examples, forget about) the time & expense of a dual degree (vs. only a JD).
posted by paul_smatatoes to Work & Money (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: er, strong preference for. preview is your friend.
posted by paul_smatatoes at 3:18 PM on January 16, 2009

Financial advisory for restructuring or distressed situations usually has a strong preference for people who understand corporate bankruptcy law. Also true with places that invest in distressed/special situations.
posted by milkrate at 3:40 PM on January 16, 2009

Going into business, the JD will be a plus. Going into law, the MBA will be a plus at law firms focused on the business clientele - depending on where the degrees are from.

The first of these will likely result in higher income over time.
posted by yclipse at 4:54 PM on January 16, 2009

A JD/MBA is a fine thing, but there are no jobs -- some odd-ball's hiring requirements aside -- solely open to a JD/MBA. Moreover I don't think you could find any career path -- in law or business -- where JD/MBAs are anything but a small minority. Distressed and restructuring might have the largest preponderance of JD/MBAs, but in many years in that business my anecdotal sense is that it can't be more than 10% of the professionals -- probably much less.
posted by MattD at 5:14 PM on January 16, 2009

I have a friend who has found both degrees to be handy in law firm administration. Other than that I don't know.
posted by BuddhaBelly at 5:48 PM on January 16, 2009

Don't see how this would really help. One degree is not required for any job, the other, legally required for every job in the field. Law firms won't care about your MBA grades but will care about the class rank big time for the JD.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:40 PM on January 16, 2009

As someone with a general purpose (no specialty) MBA - I'm not sure the degree itself is specific enough for this kind of job to exist.

Actually the one real answer to this I can think of is Managing Partner of a mid to large size law firm. Its a bit ironic that many firms are led by people with little to none business experience.
posted by bitdamaged at 9:39 PM on January 16, 2009

Best answer: Law firm admin would be a decent place for such a degree but you have to be a lawyer for ages to get into that and the MBA isn't going to be terribly helpful before that. Perhaps doing some consulting in that area? Legal marketing is a bit tricky and having a dual back ground could be useful. Lawyers tend to take other lawyers more seriously, though lawyers who don't "lawyer" sometimes don't count.

I think legal innovation/entrepreneurship is an interesting angle but a well-focused MBA would probably serve just as well.

Seriously, talk to the program administrator. If you don't have a good plan and can't get one worked out with the administrator, don't do it. It's a waste of time and money. The people I know with both are basically planning on using one (the MBA in most cases) as a back-up for when they get sick of being lawyers. Another got accepted to the law school at his chosen university but not the MBA program and got in to the MBA program via the dual-degree backdoor after the first year of law school.

If you're on the fence about which to get and thus considering both, just go for the MBA. It's shorter, infinitely more useful, you don't have to take a bar exam at the end, and you can take it wherever you want to go without worrying about reciprocity.
posted by the christopher hundreds at 11:44 PM on January 16, 2009

Business Law professor at a business school. Business Law is an academic field, too.
posted by zizzle at 6:35 AM on January 17, 2009

Consulting, particularly with specific clients (banks, the government, etc.) Both degrees aren't necessary, but they can be very attractive and helpful.
posted by pointystick at 8:29 AM on January 17, 2009

Real estate is a popular trans-disciplinary application of law and business. Dual degrees not required, but certainly helpful.
posted by Chris4d at 7:15 AM on January 19, 2009

Best answer: I am a law firm marketer with a JD (2005) and I am currently working on my MBA (expected 2010). I've been in legal marketing for more than 7 years, and I plan to stay after my degree is complete. I find that many people I look up to in this profession have either or both degrees. It's almost mandatory to have an MBA at minimum to be a CMO at most large law firms.

Law firm administration - whether it be finance, accounting, operations, managment/recuriting, or marketing - are going to be your best bets for this joint degree.

However, I have to tell you, I made a conscious and carefully-considered decision NOT to do a dual degree program for my JD. The dual degree is not as highly regarded in some circles as two separate degrees would be. Additionally, since I had a BBA in undergrad, most of my credits that actually did transfer to my current MBA program would not have transfered to the joint program. It's something important to consider.
posted by MeetMegan at 1:56 PM on January 19, 2009

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