Many employers will require that you visit their office prior to giving you a job offer. In a typical callback, you will meet with four to six attorneys and perhaps be taken out to lunch or dinner.

When you receive callback invitations, you should make every effort to respond promptly so that you can secure your desired callback interview date. Also, if you decline the invitation, you may be freeing up that callback opportunity for another student.  If you find yourself in the position of needing to reschedule or cancel a callback already arranged, do so as quickly as possible. Keep in mind that by canceling late in the process, the employer will have likely wasted money and other resources that it cannot recoup.

When you call to schedule your callback, take advantage of the recruiter as a resource by asking for a copy of their reimbursement policy; inquiring about how travel arrangements are made; learning about the structure of your interview day and when you can obtain the names of your interviews; and learning what materials you should bring. Feel free to make reasonable interview requests to the recruiter. For example, you may wish to interview with attorneys from a particular practice group or with a particular affiliation (working parents, LGBTQ). Employers will do their best to accommodate your request. If your interview will involve a meal, inform the recruiter of any dietary restrictions.

If you are scheduling multiple callback interviews in the same city, the first firm with whom you schedule a callback usually becomes your “lead” firm for your trip. The lead firm will assist with hotel and travel arrangements and will reimburse you. You will provide your lead firm with the names of the other firms that you visit during that trip, and the lead firm will seek reimbursement from them. Once you have scheduled a callback interview, take advantage of the opportunity to contact other employers to whom you have applied and/or had a screening interview. Inform them that you will be in town and express interest in arranging an interview with them during that time.

Have a clear understanding of what the employer considers a reasonable expense before you spend. Don’t assume that you are entitled to a night in a hotel—for example, some firms in NYC expect Yale law students to take the train into the city and return home that evening, other firms are willing to have you spend the night on them. In addition, smaller employers may have substantially different ideas about appropriate travel expenses (especially meals and hotels) than larger ones. Keep all receipts and submit them promptly after your interview(s) while the information is still fresh in your mind.

To prepare for the interview, review the employer’s website and other employer research tools, talk to students who have worked for the employer, review your resume, write down a list of questions to ask at the interview, and know how you are going to answer their questions. If you obtained the names of your interviewers, review their bios on the firm’s website.  Bring whatever materials the employer has requested.

Feel free to contact the employer after the callback to seek additional information about issues that concern you. For certain matters (e.g., your need to have a week off in the summer), you may wish to wait until after you have received a job offer at which point the employer may be more likely to accommodate your needs. Many employers, especially those nearby, are happy to have you return to the office for a follow up visit. You should wait until you receive a few offers and then use revisits to assist you in making a final decision. Some employers will coordinate “offer dinners.” If your schedule will not permit, you should feel free to decline politely the invitation. In any event, respond promptly to any invitations.