i The Frugal Law Student | 2006 | October

Law School
Frugality
Personal Finance
Productivity
Nutrition

The Frugal Law Student’s Net Worth

Written by The Frugal Law Student

Today, for the first time, I determined my net worth…. wow.
Right now, Mrs. Frugal Law Student and I’s net worth is $-37,420.53. Damn. We’re in the hole and I have two more years of law school to finish.

Let’s break this number down into assets and liabilities.

Assets
Cash Savings: $5,583.90
Checking: $1,210.79
IRA: $1,815.49
Mutual Funds: $6,141.37

Total: $14,751.55

Debt
Frugal Law Student’s Student Loans: $21,464.59
Mrs. FLS Student Loans: $30,685.49

Total: $52,150.08

Net Worth: $-37,420.53

We’ve got a lot of work on our hands. Ideally, we would like to pay a lot of our debt off while I’m in school. Mrs. FLS is an adjunct teacher at the community college here in town, but it doesn’t pay that much. We need to look for ways to make some side cash while I’m still in school. I’m depressed. Time to work on my memo.

Westlaw and Lexis Points

Written by The Frugal Law Student

The Frugal Law Student is always on the lookout for ways to get free stuff. When I found about Westlaw and Lexis points during orientation, I jumped on the point collecting bandwagon.

The idea of the point system is basically patterned off of crack dealers. Both companies offer rewards to students who use their service. The goal is to form product allegiance to their product.

Westlaw
by far has the best reward system. All you have to do is sign on and you get 10 points. After you sign off, you can answer a super easy question about Westlaw service to earn 15 more points. Part of daily routine is to sign, look up a random legal word Black’s dictionary, sign-0ff, and answer the trivia question. Boom! 25 points daily points. Westlaw also sends out e-mails that offer 200 points just for opening them. Sometimes the e-mails have bonus trivia questions worth 100 points. The Westlaw classes also offer tons of points for attending. They take about an hour, but are worth up to 400 points each. (Plus you learn some cool research skills). I’m up to 3, 700 points so far. I’m thinking about using my points to buy Mrs. Frugal Law Student a nice handbag for Christmas and the only thing it will cost me was 2 minutes of my day. What a deal.

Lexis points suck. You don’t earn anything for signing on. Instead, you have to complete these dumb “Passport” quizzes. They take up insane amounts of time to do. Even when you complete them, you don’t get many points. Additionaly, Lexis training points pale in comparison to Westlaw. I think if you attended a Westlaw workshop at my school, you got 100 points. Lame. However, I’m still trying to earn points on Lexis because you can exchange your points for gift certificates to Chili’s or amazon.com. If I earn enough, I can take out Mrs. Frugal Law Student for dinner and eat the crap out of a Ground Peppercorn Burger and Southwest Eggrolls. And it won’t cost me a dime.

Bottom line: If you’re not already doing so, get serious about Westlaw and Lexis points. It doesn’t take much time and the pay off can be good.

Welcome to the Frugal Law Student

Written by Mrs. FLS

Greetings. I am the Frugal Law Student. I’m a 1L at law school somewhere in the Midwest. I plan on using this blog to record what I’m doing to make ends meet in law school.
Like many law students, I’m already saddled with a couple grand in undergrad student loans and I’ve had to take out more for law school. My goal is to mitigate as much as I can any more debt through sound financial principles. I’ll post time to time on what’s worked for me in order to save a buck or two.
Today, my wife and I ran a report on Microsoft Money. It made me want to cry. We’ve been living it up a bit too much with our dinning out. We’ve spent almost $25 a week. Yikes! We’ve resolved to cut back on that. Maybe instead of dropping $25 at Chili’s once a week, we’ll drop $10 at Sonic. Besides, Sonic drinks are tasty.