As professional attorney recruiters, it is important that our potential clients understand what law firms are looking for and we often get asked if your GPA or law school matter when looking for a position with a new firm.
Sometimes your GPA is a factor when looking for work with one of the Big Law firms, AM 100/200. When you gain more experience in a sought-after practice, the GPA and law school become less of a factor.
Some law firms require the top 25 law schools plus the top 20% of the graduating class. Though, other firms are more relaxed in this requirement.
Graduating from a top law school with a mid-level GPA or a very high GPA from a lesser-known law school may still get you into some Big Law firms.
I spoke to one attorney who started as a staff attorney in a big law firm because their GPA was lower. Once proven, however, the attorney became a partner track associate at the law firm and then a Managing Associate.
Keep in mind that thousands of law firms outside the AM 100/200 are less restrictive on GPA, so you might have to start there and work your way up to the big law firms.
Being intelligent, driven, a great writer and researcher with the right attitude, and a great work ethic go a long way.