Tag Archives: American Bar Association

How to Be a Good Corporate Lawyer

Does the legal side of commercial undertakings interest you more than the pecuniary exchanges themselves? Do you feel intrigued by all those legal formalities and paperwork involved in the fulfillment of a commercial agreement? Does watching a corporate undertaking’s back to make sure it doesn’t get into legal hassles sounds challenging to you? Well, that clearly indicates towards your love for ensuring proper obedience to procedures and regulations. If that’s true, then I would say you have the callings for a career in the field of commercial law. Mulling over the career prospects of corporate law? Well, you’ve hit the right page in that case! Read straight ahead to gather all the information you’re looking for.

Academic Requirements for Corporate Lawyer Profile

So, what educational and vocational qualifications should adorn a professionally drafted corporate lawyer resume that will fit the requirements of your prospective employer? To begin with, you need an undergraduate certification in any pre-law discipline, management or business administration. Thereafter, you must get yourself enrolled in a decent law school. In case you wish to pursue a career in the US, make sure the law school is accredited by the American Bar Association. You need to sit for and clear the LSAT with decent scores to get into a good law school. Besides graduating in law, you also need to have an excellent vocabulary along with good writing and speaking skills. A knack for details, logical reasoning and research is an added advantage. While you’re at it, also make sure you participate in clinical law programs and practice trials as much as possible to hone your skills and gain experience in handling legal situations and cases. Once you graduate, zero in upon the state where you intend to practice law and take the bar exam that is held for prospective practitioners in that state. Get yourself an internship spot with a reputed firm or a well regarded senior lawyer for more exposure and hands-on experience.

Corporate Lawyer Job Description

The primary duty of a corporate lawyer is to represent his/her corporate client in all matters that have to do with commercial, state and Federal law with regards to commercial transactions proposed or undertaken by the latter. Other duties of a corporate lawyer involve overseeing legal aspects of taxes, account statements, acquisition and renewal of various commercial licenses, payment of tariffs, fees and duties, etc. Supervising and advising the client in matters of labor relations, workmen’s compensation, strikes and lockouts, retrenchment and other such matters affecting labor relations also fall within the scope of a corporate lawyer’s job description. Also, keeping an alert eye on copyright and patent issues and overseeing the legality of all commercial contracts (writing them as well) is a part of the corporate lawyer’s duties.

Corporate Lawyer Salary

Law pays – trust me! On the entry-level, a corporate lawyer can expect to earn an average salary of $65,000 in a year. With an experience ranging between 2-4 years, a corporate lawyer can earn as much as $1,00,000 on an average in a year! As you gain more years in terms of experience in the field of corporate law, the fatter your paycheck gets! Don’t believe me? Well check this – 10 years of corporate law experience equals an average annual income of $2,00,000! How much you earn also depends upon the type of undertaking that hires you. Private commercial corporates are regarded as the highest payers while hospitals and NGOs are somewhat thrifty payers. Also, instead of being employed at a single undertaking, you can practice as a consultant and offer your legal services to a number of corporate clients, charging a fixed amount of fee for each case/consultation.

So, now that you know how to become a corporate lawyer, go ahead and get studying the right stuff. Trust me, all those long hours of mugging up (endless acts, case laws, clauses, sub-clauses – I know it sounds cumbersome, I’ve been through it all myself!) will pay off handsomely once you graduate with good scores and set your foot in the professional arena! Perseverance and burning the midnight oil is the key to clicking as high earning corporate lawyer with a formidable reputation in the courtroom! Wish you all the best!

Any requirement to become a lawyer?

A lawyer’s career can be both challenging as well as rewarding and it also offers a wide scope of practice. A lawyer can have his or her own private practice, can work with a law firm or in a corporate firm, can be employed with the government or even pursue a career as a political leader. However, getting to this very lucrative career requires a lot of time and dedication towards the purpose. In fact, it is said that obtaining a lawyer’s degree is tougher than obtaining a medical degree. It involves pursuing high level of education and qualifying various examinations, even after obtaining the degree. Those wanting to become a lawyer, must understand that they need to focus on their educational goals, all throughout. So, what are the qualifications to be a lawyer? Listed below are the requirements to become a lawyer.

Requirements To Be a Lawyer

There are three main lawyer requirements. The first requirement is that you should have studied for four years and achieved a bachelor’s degree. After that to get enrolled into a law school you will need to pass the law school admission test. Once, you are done with this you will study in the law school to get another degree. Finally, to get the license to practice law, you will have to appear and pass the bar exam.

Bachelor’s Degree
Obtaining a bachelor’s degree is the first requirement to be a lawyer. There is no specific course that you need to pursue at this level. You can pursue a course of your choice, provided you do well in it. College grades will matter a lot, while seeking admission into a law school. When in college, you can start training yourself for law school. You will need to develop your communication skills, analytical and logical thinking, writing and researching skills. You can also take up additional courses in foreign languages, history, philosophy, public speaking, etc. Also, you can enroll for preparatory courses for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), as it is crucial in obtaining admission into a good law school.

Law School Admission Test
The law school admission test is an entrance exam for law schools, conducted four times in a year by the Law School Data Assembly Service. It mainly evaluates verbal reasoning and reading skills. Its grades are important in determining the law school, you would be enrolling into. The law schools that fall under the jurisdiction of the American Bar Association, require their applicants to qualify the LSAT. Law schools consider the applicant’s LSAT scores, college grades, undergraduate school quality and if required, may also conduct a personal interview before accepting the applicant. You will also need to send your certified transcripts and college grades to the Law School Data Assembly Service, which then forwards the same to the law schools.

Law School
The first year of law school involves the study of courses such as legal writing, contracts, property law, civil procedure, constitutional law and torts. In the remaining two years, you would be pursuing specialized courses, like corporate law, tax or labor law. The three years in law school would also include activities, like moot court competitions, practicing in legal clinics and practicing under experienced judges and lawyers. At the end of the three years, successful students obtain the ‘juris doctor’ degree.

Those who would like to teach or research in the field of law, would need to acquire advance law degrees. Others can become accident lawyers, bankruptcy lawyers, divorce lawyers, etc.

Licensing
A law school pass out, holding a ‘juris doctor’ degree, would need to get licensed before he/she can practice in a court of law. Getting licensed would mean being admitted to the bar of the State, under the rules established by the State’s highest court. For this, you would have to qualify a written examination conducted by the bar and also a written ethics examination. The criteria for qualifying these examinations is – that the applicant should be a graduate from an American Bar Association accredited law school and should hold a valid college degree.

These requirements to be a lawyer, will help you obtain the degree required, but to be a successful lawyer you would need certain qualities like perseverance, the ability to reason appropriately and effective communication skills with the clients. These were the requirements to become a lawyer in United States. However, the requirements to be a lawyer change slightly from country to country.

Tips to Find a Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer For You

The prospect of divorce in itself is a messy affair for those involved. One definitely wants to get it right, as far as the legal aspects are concerned. However, paying for a divorce lawyer is not possible for everyone. Many people lose out on what they are entitled to just because they cannot afford a lawyer who can represent them well in the court of law. The enormity of the legal fees plays a major role for those searching for a lawyer.

Here is where pro bono lawyers come into the picture. A pro bono divorce lawyer is one who fights a divorce case free of cost, or if not, at least at a very nominal charge. Such a lawyer may not specialize in divorce cases, however, he may provide legal services in divorce at no or little cost to individuals or charitable organizations.

Why do Lawyers Work Pro Bono?

Pro bono is the Latin phrase which translates as ‘for the public good’ or ‘in courtesy of the people’. Under the ethical rules of the American Bar Association, every lawyer is recommended to set aside 50 hours of pro bono service every year. Some individual State Bar associations may require its lawyers to put in lesser hours of such kind of service. Besides fulfilling the ethical obligation, pro bono cases enable lawyers to gain experience in fields other than that in which they specialize. For example, a criminal law attorney can act as a pro bono divorce lawyer, which adds to his portfolio, for his own good. However, the urge to act as a pro bono lawyer can also be absolutely out of unselfish interests. Even highly experienced lawyers take up cases for free in the same area that they specialize in, in case they feel that the case is challenging and interesting. Or sometimes, it could be strictly for altruistic inclination of helping financially challenged individuals, or those who have been laid off and are unable to meet the customary legal fees. Some lawyers take up pro bono cases if they feel that taking up specific cases would be for the greater good of the community.

Does this mean that anyone and everyone can avail the services of a pro bono divorce lawyer? The answer to this question is a big NO. One needs to DESERVE a pro bono service to get it. One requires to qualify on the basis of his financial status or some other disability, to be able to avail pro bono legal services. These legalities again depend upon those stipulated by the laws of one’s residing state. The other common criteria that can entitle one for pro bono services is abuse in marriage. Be it physical, verbal, sexual, or even if it concerns one’s children, abuse of any form can help one qualify for having a pro bono lawyer fighting the case. However, one needs to present strong proof of such abuse in these cases.

Ways to Find a Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer

Finding a divorce lawyer who charges less fees can be a difficult task, as most of the lawyers fighting pro bono cases do not advertise themselves. One way to find a pro bono lawyer is to call the general practice attorneys in one’s local county and check if they are taking up pro bono cases. One can also contact the State Bar Association to find if there are pro bono divorce lawyers to take up a case. Certain firms have pro bono lawyers or have an assigned pro bono coordinator to look after such cases. Check with such organizations and legal firms to see if you meet the criteria to qualify for these legal services, for free or at a reduced cost. Ask your friends and family about lawyers who are willing to offer a pro bono service. It is always advisable to look for references of people who know such lawyers, so that you are sure, that despite working for no or lower fees, the pro bono divorce lawyer would handle your case efficiently.

It is very important to have an efficient divorce attorney. Despite all the benefits of having a lawyer fighting your case for free, employing a pro bono lawyer is not completely a rosy picture. There are pitfalls associated with it which one needs to be wary of. Many times, these lawyers do not have enough experience in handling divorce cases, as that may not be their field of expertise. It is best to do your research and talk to a couple such lawyers, if that is possible, before you are sure that you want a particular pro bono lawyer for yourself.

Consult with friends and family or those who can give references regarding the lawyer you are considering. The best help that you could do to yourself is to gather as much information about the laws regarding divorce, as you can. This ensures that you are not absolutely dependent on your divorce lawyer and left in the lurch in case things go wrong or not up to your expectations. Make peace with your past in a smooth and organized way, bereft of the hassles.