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Sam Fareed



Sam Fareed

Principal Attorney, United Citizen Law Firm
Area of Practice: Civil Claims
Year Graduated: 2016

Undergraduate: UCLA
Major: Sociology
Year/Track: 2011

Bio

Sam Fareed grew up in war-torn Kabul, Afghanistan. "I was eight years old when I first witnessed the law being employed as an instrument of oppression. I grimaced as I observed Taliban tanks trekking through the streets of our neighborhood in Kabul, letting off gunshots as they celebrated their successful takeover of the capitol."

As the oldest of five children, Sam had the responsibility to provide for his siblings and mother from the very young age.  

A few years after the Taliban took over Kabul, Sam and his family risked their lives to immigrate to Pakistan where they lived on top of each other in a small room. Sam sold fruits, socks, and anything he could get his hands on to support his family. In 2002, after his mother applied to the U.S. embassy as a refugee, the family moved to West Sacramento. To augment his mother's $742 monthly income, Sam sold candy bars to his peers. Eventually, his school principal caught on to his business practices and told him that he could no longer sell candy, but offered him a job in the cafeteria.  

As a freshman, Sam dreamed of practicing law. He was so eager to join his high school's mock trial chapter that he practically taught himself English in order to debate.

"I've always had a passion for law because of my upbringing. I've seen how a country operates without a legal system and how a country operates with a legal system. The weak in Afghanistan do not have a voice and then you go to America and you see the little guy in front of a big insurance company and they have a voice through their lawyers. That's what really motivates me each day to wake up and do my work because I can really do something about the oppression that I see and that's a power that I never had in Afghanistan."  

After receiving a degree in sociology at UCLA while supporting himself by establishing and running his own moving company, Sam set his sights on law school. Inspired by his mother's strength and determination, he hoped to become a lawyer to amplify the voices of people who are underserved.  

By pursuing his law degree at McGeorge, Fareed made a decision that many would not. He chose to study at McGeorge in favor of a law school in San Diego which offered him a $100,000 scholarship. McGeorge did not offer him funding, but he couldn't ignore the promise that a McGeorge education could provide him.  

When he first visited McGeorge, Sam was blown over by its collegiate atmosphere and the many programs it offered students to specialize in. "McGeorge is the heart of Sacramento. McGeorge has the reputation, the alumni and everything that you need to be successful as a lawyer in Sacramento."  

When Sam graduated and passed the bar, he was offered a well-compensated position working at a legal firm in San Jose, but soon left to start his own firm specializing in civil litigation called United Citizen Law Firm.  

Before he branched off on his own, Sam was representing insurance companies. "Every time I outsmarted the opposing counsel, I couldn't stomach knowing that the little guy was going to pay the price," Sam explained.  

Now, Sam savors the freedom that he has to help his clients who need legal representation and the flexibility he has to be at a client's home until 10 pm - gaining their trust and counseling them on different areas of the law so that they can sleep better at night.  

To Sam, lawyers have the power to be social architects. "Throughout law school all my friends were looking to better their resume and find a job, but I always wanted to go on my own."

He encourages future and current students to get as much practical experience as possible while they are at McGeorge.

"Work throughout law school with different law firms and if you can get experience with solo practitioners then accept it. They do most of the work from the initial consultation to the conclusion of the case. It's one thing to learn theories and it's another thing to apply those theories in a hands-on way."  

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