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What does a career in law look like?

Lawyers talking amongst themselves in a courtroom

Interested in law? Find out where a degree in law could take you and what career paths it could lead to.

What does a career in law look like?

Netflix might be full of series and movies about life as a lawyer, but in reality, there’s much more to a career in law. Working in the legal profession, you could become a business law consultant, work in negotiation and conflict resolution, develop your career in government or politics, become a writer or journalist, or pursue many other opportunities.

What do legal professionals do?

A career in law could see you working with legal documents, legal advice, negotiating and mediating on legal matters as well as legal representation.

You might find that you:

  • handle legal disputes and issue court proceedings,
  • interview and meet with clients you are going to represent,
  • provide information and legal advice on a number of issues like the sale or purchase or property, wills, promotions and product launches,
  • prepare legal documents for property transactions such as transfers, leases and mortgages, or
  • analyse contracts to advise your clients on what action to take. 

What careers can you pursue if you study law?

Laws apply to individuals, organisations and government departments every day, so there’s an extremely wide range of careers you might choose. Your career opportunities could include roles such as:

  • Barrister or solicitor, or roles in federal, state or local government – battle it out in the courtroom trying criminal or civil cases.
  • Lawyer – specialise and practice in a specific area of law such as immigration law, commercial law or family law.
  • Legal advisor in the corporate sector – help companies work within the law, such as when they’re launching or promoting a product or service. 

There are still a large amount of additional options within the legal arena, allowing you to build an exciting career anywhere in the world, working as a journalist, writer, politician or in many other roles.

What industries could you work in?

You can forge a legal career path in any area or industry. You might be a champion of human rights, you could create terms and conditions for major prize draws for corporate companies or you might even explore emerging fields such as artificial intelligence, new apps and start-ups or technology. 

What skills would help in a career in law

To succeed in a legal career you’ll need a wide range of skills that can help you. Depending on the type of role you’re interested in, you might need:

  • Excellent written communication skills to help you read, interpret, write and report on legal documents which might include court proceedings and contracts.
  • Verbal communication skills to help you examine witnesses, present a case in court or communicate with clients in any setting.
  • Interpersonal skills to help you build trust and relationships with the clients or corporate team members you are working with.
  • Strong analytical and logical reasoning to help you make sense of information.
  • Legal research skills to find facts, statistics and evidence to support your work.
  • Time management skills to help you meet deadlines and juggle different projects and responsibilities.

How to prepare for your career in law while you’re at uni

While you’re studying, you can start preparing for your career and build your legal experience and skills. You might like to:

You could also add valuable experience to your CV with volunteer work for a charity or not-for-profit group, where you might find opportunities to get experience in a legal support role. Tessa Maybery, Murdoch law graduate, took the opportunity to undertake the SCALES program to put her knowledge into practise in the real word: 
“The mentoring I received through the SCALES program has been phenomenal and has helped me to imagine what my life as a lawyer could look like.” Tessa Maybery, Law graduate

The future of Law?

If you’re considering a career in law, the outlook for your future job prospects is positive. New products, services, policies and companies are always being launched, so the need for legal professionals is always expanding.

There’s also a growing need for long-held laws and regulations to be reviewed, challenged and changed as the world’s population, environment and technology changes at a faster rate than ever before.

For more information about a career in law, check out our course in law.    

Posted on:

11 Sep 2019

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