I was running through this problem in the back of my mind recently, and DJM beat me to the punch. Potential non-trads, take a read:
This is it in a nutshell - if you don't land pure legal employment for the various reasons mentioned here and on other blogs, the legally-related jobs that seem to be a great fit for JDs do not require a JD AT ALL.
Think about this for a minute - the whole premise is that legal knowledge and understanding is valuable. And I would argue that it is. So many times, problems arise due to someone not doing what they are supposed to do via contract. They either do not comply with statutes and governmental regulations, or they default "wrongfully" due to a dispute with another party, or they don't make a good businees decision when looking at the costs of complying with a requirement vs. costs of litigation, or they don't preserve claims on appeal re: a governmental contracting body.
So, in theory, a JD should be a perfect fit. But no one appears to want a JD candidate, seemingly if for no other reason than the cost to employ a JD is just too high, or that the breadth of the education is not necessary relative to the specific job skills required. In other words, the necessary skills can be learned on the job, so why pay more?
Lord knows I've tried, myself. I finally landed a JD-preferred job years ago, and it wasn't for lack of trying. I have and continue to look at better jobs and opportunities to leverage my JD (becuase I'm stuck with it, like it or not), but convincing the other party that it's worth it is a huge challenge. A lot of employers can't connect the dots or otherwise see the value of a JD, as evidenced by DJM and the job descriptions that can be easily found.
Lol skool tuition has essentially shut the doors on a whole generation of graduates who could have gone into non-traditional career paths, but for the salary level they need to survive and service loans. Again, it isn't the 1970s anymore, costs have gone up, competition is even more fierce.
If your aren't shut out due to predictive coding, funding, or pedigree, then you're shut out due to debt. If you have to go back to school, go for something (1) targeted to the business world job you are seeking, and (2) cheaper. Avoid the non-versatile JD at all costs.