TikToking law firm partner hits back at fellow lawyer’s claim she doesn’t ‘work very hard’

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‘I’m annualising 2,800 hours this year’

US law firm partner Joanne Molinaro (credit: @thekoreanvegan)

A TikToking US law firm partner has clapped back after a fellow lawyer claimed she doesn’t “work very hard”.

According to Joanne Molinaro, a partner at Foley & Lardner’s Chicago office, the criticism originally came under what was meant to be a “very fun” TikTok video documenting lawyer life during the pandemic.

The clip showed Molinaro starting the day with a dog walk and a morning run before heading to the office, where she gets stuck into typical lawyerly tasks — stopping for the odd coffee and selfie break. Molinaro, who also runs food blog ‘The Korean Vegan’, is then seen rounding off the day by hosting a virtual cooking demonstration for her friends.

Despite what appears to be a hectic schedule, one lawyer reportedly criticised Molinaro’s work ethic by commenting below the video: “It looks like you don’t work very hard”. Taking issue with this critical quip, Molinaro posted her response in another TikTok video which has since been viewed over 660,000 times.


my first ##rant. ##fypシ ##fyp ##4u ##lawyer ##tiktoklawyer ##beautytips ##closingargument

♬ original sound – thekoreanvegan

Hitting back at the hater, she said:

“I’m annualising 2,800 hours this year at the firm. I run 35 to 40 miles a week, and this is on a break year, as there are no marathons right now. I run a blog that has well over a hundred thousand followers and in this past year, I wrote my first book.”

She continued:

“I work my real job from Monday through Saturday and the Korean Vegan is on Sunday. I don’t get days off, not even on my honeymoon. I get up at 4:15am to 5:00am to start my day and then get home past 6pm and immediately cook dinner for me and my vegan husband. I’m sorry, I wasn’t able to fit that into a 60-second video.”

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Molinaro, who boasts 37,000 TikTok followers, said that although the commenter “has since deleted her comment”, the remark “really hit a nerve because I feel like these days I am going to lose my mind from how little time for rest I have”.

She also found the comment to champion a “‘let’s compete on who’s going to work themselves to death the fastest’ mentality that is endemic of an older generation”, which clashes with those who “value joy, generosity, and compassion over sweat, grit and capitalistic greed”.

Molinaro’s video, described as “my first #rant”, ends with: “Whether or not I work hard enough is a matter of interpretation. But whether I should continue to make room for joy, love and laughter, that counsel is not up for debate.”

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The lady doth protest too much.



Who cares


John Curran

I wouldn’t bother with Tiktok if I was getting up at 4.15am, working Saturdays, working on my honeymoon etc, but each to their own.


Random passer-by

This is the problem with online profiles, it gives a false impression of people’s lives. People project a glamorous life they don’t live, and then people who watch that get jealous.

Tip to all kids, Instagram/Tik Tok/Facebook show the highlights, they don’t show the mundane. And they are edited highlights.


Good Game

Imagine marrying someone who then works on your honeymoon, yikes! Tik tok is the sound of the countdown clock to her burnout, and it’s getting louder.


Maybe Baby

‘Annualising’ – would billing not be a better word?


You get me?

Not if those hours are written off.



“Annualising” is never an appropriate word.



I thought she was using it to convert part-year results into an annual number.
For example, by the end of July she had reached 1,600 hours, so maintaining that pace for the rest of the year would take her to 2,800.
In retrospect, it is sad to realise I have wasted so much time thinking about something which happened on TikTok.


Amazing how the vegan managed to drop in that her husband is also vegan. Why not just say “cook dinner for me and my husband”? I don’t cook dinner for my omnivorous wife and children


Kirkland Lambo Owners' Club

It would’ve been far more interesting if she’d specified her husband ate a completely carnivorous diet.



I laughed way too much at this



Good god 2800 hours annually, getting up at 4am, working on honeymoons and every weekend? The life of a partner sounds disgusting, it isn’t worth a 1mil pay cheque or a 50mil pay cheque. I guess that’s why most people prefer to sod off to an in-house position as soon as they can, I’d rather have money + enjoy my life than just have money.



“She also found the comment to champion a “‘let’s compete on who’s going to work themselves to death the fastest’ mentality that is endemic of an older generation” ”

Except… She does the exact same thing? (“I feel like I’m going to lose my mind from how little time for rest I have”)



It’s do as I say and not as I do. I.e hypocrisy



*Oh no! I’ve spent too long cooking eggplant meatballs and cauliflower tartine that I’ve only billed 1,200 hours this year and now I’m being called out on Instagram for not working hard enough! Hang on…yes wait…I’ve got 1,600 hours of INTERNAL time clocked! Now how can I make this look good…*

“I’m annualising 2,800 hours this year”

*Haha! That’ll show them! Now back to joy, generosity and compassion baby!*

“Alexa, play Megan Thee StallIon!”



God, she sounds as dull as she sound self-righteous. Tik Tok is for tools.



* counsel



I mean, if I was partner and another lawyer was under the misconception that I didn’t have to work very hard. I would secretly think, wow, I’ve done something right; I must be the new supreme. Not justifying my billables and my fitbit activity to haters. And it’s this very attitude that will inevitably stunt my career progression…will make do with a suits from marks&sparks instead of Savile Row



Isn’t the superwoman lawyer who also cooks her husband dinner every night trite at this point? Really, move on. With that schedule, cooking is a waste of time. Vegan food can be ordered easily, or she can have a service send pre-prepped meals, or her husband could do it, or she could pay a chef etc etc.

She just added that on for good measure and it’s annoying for the rest of us women who are ready for the 2800 hour/year billing, marathon-running, meal-cooking superwoman stereotype to go back to early 2000’s where it belongs.


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