What Do Lawyers Do?
Lawyers advise or manage clients on legal transactions. They represent clients in civil and criminal litigation and other legal proceedings and handle legal documents. They may specialize in one area of law or practice in a broad range of areas of law.Lawyers have strong command of the English language and knowledge of laws and government. They are familiar with legal codes, court procedures, precedents, executive orders, government regulations, agency rules, and the democratic political process. They deliver customer and personal service and have knowledge of administration and management, especially if they are leaders of a law firm or department. Lawyers are acquainted with clerical and administrative procedures and know how to use computer and electronics to run their offices and handle their records and documents.
Lawyers Skills and Abilities
Lawyers must have excellent communications skills. When it comes to speaking, they need to do so with clarity and be able to successfully communicate their ideas and information so that others can comprehend. They need to be good listeners and have good oral comprehension. Reading and writing comprehension are also very important, particularly when exchanging documents. Critical thinking and complex problem solving skills are highly important, not to mention having good judgment and decision making skills when it comes to strategizing for clients.
Lawyers need to be good at obtaining information, then making decisions based on analysis of that information. They need to evaluate the results so they can choose the best solution that will solve problems. They are often involved in conflict resolution and negotiations. Much of their work involves handling complaints, resolving grievances, and settling disputes. Lawyers also need to look out for compliance to make sure that events and processes have followed laws, standards, or regulations. Lawyers often communicate with others, including people outside their organizations, customers, the general public, the government, and many others. They may have to go to court or before government agencies to present evidence to either defend clients or prosecute defendants in civil or criminal litigation. They may be involved in selecting jurors and meeting with judges, as well as questioning witnesses and arguing motions. They often present and review cases to judges and juries. In addition, they prepare legal briefs and opinions and file appeals in state and federal courts.
Lawyers Tools and Technology
Lawyers often use software to conduct database queries, information retrieval, and searches. They should also know how to use word processing software and document management software, as well as accounting and presentation software. Lawyers should be able to use tools such as CD players and recorders, computers, DVD players and recorders, USB flash drives and other removable media drives, and LCD or similar projectors.
Education and Training for Lawyers
Most lawyers have a Doctoral or professional degree and are not usually required to have work experience or prior on-the-job training. Most lawyers have completed relevant law coursework, but may have also studied legal research, legal studies and jurisprudence, banking, corporate, finance, and securities law, comparative law, health law, business law, intellectual property law, and tax law.
The pay will vary, depending upon the experience level and location of the lawyer. The lowest 10% make approximately $55,400 per year while the median salary is $115,000. The top 10% of lawyers earn at least $187,200 annually.
Lawyers Jobs by Geography
By population, Tennessee, Guam, Utah, and Washington have the highest concentration of lawyers. However, the states with the highest median wages for these occupations are the District of Columbia, California, New York, and Delaware. The private legal services industry has the highest demand for lawyers, followed by local, state, and federal governments. This is information to keep in mind when determining where to initiate your career as a lawyer.