Making it in Manhattan

Aoife Moore Kavanagh,
Associate Attorney, Law Office of James G. McCarney

Making It In Manhattan

Following on from the brilliant news that I had passed the New York Bar Exam, I channeled all my excited energy into the next obstacle I had to overcome: Getting a job in New York City. There is no quick fix for landing an attorney role in the Big Apple. It’s fiercely competitive, hugely oversaturated and as a non-U.S citizen, there is the whole visa process to consider. I spent 5-months applying for jobs on every career website I could find. When I ran out of vacancies to apply for, I googled “litigation firms in New York City” and started sending my resume and cover letter to every single firm on the list, from A-Z. I was offered an associate position quite early on in my search which I decided to turn down after much deliberation. I wanted to be a lawyer in New York so badly it felt wrong to not take the offer but I knew I wouldn’t have been happy there. The firm was located outside of the city and I really wanted to be in Manhattan. If I had ignored my gut feeling I wouldn’t have ended up where I am today! I probably sent over 1,000 applications and had around 12 interviews before I finally landed my dream job.

Currently, I am a practicing associate at the renowned insurance defense firm of Maroney O’Connor LLP in Manhattan’s Wall Street District. I spend most of my days in the courtroom, engaging in settlement deliberations with judges and my adversaries, arguing motions and attending conferences. I have an amazing case list that is varied and keeps my work exciting, from construction accidents to property damage, product liability to motor vehicle accidents, I handle it all. I am lucky to be a member of a firm that gives me free rein on my cases and allows me to steer them completely independently, from the initial stages of discovery right through to settlement. I am looking forward to future accomplishments at the firm, particularly trying my first ever case.