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CPA in a law firm

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Stibbs

New member
What is the name of your state? California

Hello,

I work in the billing department of a midsize (100 or so attorneys) law firm in Los Angeles. I'm studying for the CPA exam. Many of the lawyers work with financial law, estate planning, international investing, etc. Basically there's a lot of overlap between accounting and law there and several of the attorneys are also CPA's. I was wondering, if I were to pass the CPA exam, do you think its reasonable that I might be able to transfer from the billing department into some sort of position within the actual legal working field assisting with some financial/accounting aspect? If you do, any suggestions on how to go about doing so? The only one I can think of is befriending some of the attorney CPA's so they can see and know me. If you don't think this is reasonable, can you think of anything else in a law firm a CPA license could be useful for?

Thank you
 


LdiJ

Senior Member
What is the name of your state? California

Hello,

I work in the billing department of a midsize (100 or so attorneys) law firm in Los Angeles. I'm studying for the CPA exam. Many of the lawyers work with financial law, estate planning, international investing, etc. Basically there's a lot of overlap between accounting and law there and several of the attorneys are also CPA's. I was wondering, if I were to pass the CPA exam, do you think its reasonable that I might be able to transfer from the billing department into some sort of position within the actual legal working field assisting with some financial/accounting aspect? If you do, any suggestions on how to go about doing so? The only one I can think of is befriending some of the attorney CPA's so they can see and know me. If you don't think this is reasonable, can you think of anything else in a law firm a CPA license could be useful for?

Thank you
To be honest, if the law firm already has attorneys who are also CPAs I don't know how useful your CPA license would be to them. A law firm does have some need for a CPA on board, but they can refer that out if necessary. The fact that they have several attorneys who are CPAs generally means that they don't have to refer any of that out, anyway.

Now, that doesn't mean that you cannot network with the attorneys who are CPAs to see if there if there is a niche you could specialize in that would be of use to the firm, other than remaining in their billing/accounting department.
 

Taxing Matters

Overtaxed Member
What is the name of your state? California

I was wondering, if I were to pass the CPA exam, do you think its reasonable that I might be able to transfer from the billing department into some sort of position within the actual legal working field assisting with some financial/accounting aspect?
That just depends on the law firm. Some may have a need for a CPA. Most law firms would not have enough work for a CPA full-time, so you may have to spend some time really searching to find a firm that might need you. You could also set up shop to provide CPA services to law firms as needed. The lawyers most likely to need CPAs are lawyers who do securities law and those who do tax law. I practice primarily tax law but don't have enough need for a CPA full time. I contact a CPA firm as needed or refer the client to the CPA for those services. So your CPA license and skills will be useful to lawyers, but you may have to be flexible on the way you work rather than counting on being a full-time employee of a law firm.
 
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