Whether you're a seasoned attorney seeking a new position or a recent law school graduate looking for work, your resume experience section is a vital part of your application because it informs employers about your legal expertise and capabilities. Here are some tips about writing a resume work experience section so law firms and other potential employers can see that you have what they're looking for in a candidate.
What to Include in a Lawyer Resume Work Experience Section
Your experience section needs to include any actual work as a lawyer, but what if you only have a brief work history or switched to the legal field after another career? In that case, when writing a resume work experience section, search your work background for skills that transfer to practicing law, and present them in a way that shows how valuable they can be to employers.
For example, any aspect of your skill set that demonstrates your ease at communicating with an audience may make you a better candidate for litigation. Jobs that entailed meticulous documentation speak to your ability to carry out discovery and evidence work. Having worked as a real estate agent or social worker makes you a solid candidate for property law and family law, respectively.
Remember that volunteer work, internships and clerk positions as well as ancillary work in the legal field all help support your candidacy for lawyer jobs. How you format your resume and highlight your skills when writing a resume work experience section can make a huge difference in attracting employers.
How to Format a Lawyer Resume Work Experience Section
Most lawyers use one of two formats when writing a resume work experience section. A chronological resume is the more traditional and places all your work history in order of completion, starting at the present time. This is the right format for you if you have worked a long time in the legal field or if you are fresh out of law school. Outline your work experience using bullet points under each job entry. Shoot for five to eight points per position.
One Example of a Great Lawyer Resume Work Experience Section
Here is an example of a great resume example to follow when writing a resume work experience section. It uses a hybrid resume format where legal experience is highlighted above more recent but less pertinent work. In addition, notice how this format handles a gap in employment to make it less obvious.
Abbot, Kinney & Hampton - Associate - Santa Monica, CA
July 10, 2010 to Aug. 18, 2013
- Assisted with litigation on criminal cases
- Conducted depositions
- Cataloged evidence
- Prepared witnesses prior to trial
- Helped senior partners draft briefs
Pico, Beverly & Crenshaw - Paralegal - Los Angeles, CA
Sept. 9, 2005 to Aug. 20, 2007
- Managed active document files for corporate law firm
- Developed paralegal mentoring program
- Assisted with client meetings
- Retrieved material from the law library
- Filed documents at the courthouse
- Promote private security services
- Write home security systems copy for sales brochures
- Contract bodyguard services
- Give investor presentations
- Set sales metrics for other sales staff
Bel Air Personal Protection - Sales Manager - Los Angeles, CA
Sept. 1, 2013 to present
LiveCareer offers its users many more great examples of resume sections and templates. Writing a resume work experience section will be a breeze when you get tips and advice for making yours stand out from the competition.