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How do I decide what law to practice?

It's a tough decision. #law


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David’s Answer

Olivia,
I agree with much of what has been said here, but would emphasize that the best way to approach this is to look at what in your current situation makes you happy and where you believe you would like to be in the future.

When you get into law school you will find different classes that you really enjoy and others that you're just getting through. Once you identify which ones strike a positive note with you reach out to attorneys that specialize in that area and pick their brains about what they like and don't like about their area of expertise.

Also look at where you think you'll want to live after law school and identify if there are any practice areas that need more attorneys. Hopefully that will coincide with one of the areas in which you have an interest.

I am also not currently practicing law, but the years in spent in law school and practicing business law provided me a great basis for success in my current position.

Finally realize that often what you think you'll like at a start does not turn out to be where you end up. Be willing to constantly reassess where you are, what you really enjoy and how that all fits into your future plan. This is true even after you being practicing.

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David’s Answer

Olivia,
I agree with much of what has been said here, but would emphasize that the best way to approach this is to look at what in your current situation makes you happy and where you believe you would like to be in the future.

When you get into law school you will find different classes that you really enjoy and others that you're just getting through. Once you identify which ones strike a positive note with you reach out to attorneys that specialize in that area and pick their brains about what they like and don't like about their area of expertise.

Also look at where you think you'll want to live after law school and identify if there are any practice areas that need more attorneys. Hopefully that will coincide with one of the areas in which you have an interest.

I am also not currently practicing law, but the years in spent in law school and practicing business law provided me a great basis for success in my current position.

Finally realize that often what you think you'll like at a start does not turn out to be where you end up. Be willing to constantly reassess where you are, what you really enjoy and how that all fits into your future plan. This is true even after you begin practicing.

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David’s Answer

How do you decide what law to practice? This is something you have to do a little bit of homework on because you will be the one choosing what you will be interest in and also what area you are expert in. I did several years of practice in Law such as traffic, commercial, immigration and other simple law practice. All I can say from those times of studying, working, and practicing in the Law field everything is a up and down and time consuming due to the about of thing you are doing as well the time you put into it. But there is not wrong thing it is just seeing if you want to spend more time to reach where you want to be at. Here are some ideas for Deciding What Type of Law to Practice that you can ask yourself or seek for some answer from other profession in the Law field.

- Think of the Long Term, Foresee the number of years, experiences that you will be learning while practicing in this area.
- Make a Plan, have an idea what area you are interested while you are still studying in Law School.
- Talk to Practicing Lawyers, ask around of shadow someone who is currently an practicing lawyers and the area they are practicing to see if it is something you will be considering.
- Talk to Your Professors, a lot of professor are either retired, part-time lawyer, and etc. they are the one who been through this and they are the one that can give you some ideas as well see what area you are good as and guide you through that pathway.
- Listen to Yourself, always listen to yourself because you are the one making the decision not others, others can suggest but you are the one who will be doing it.
- Think Outside the Box, think about the pros and cons as well as what can you do outside of this.
- Quality of Life, spend more time or spend less time on your job, it is stress-free versus stressful
- Understand Your Personal Goals, each person their personality is different so you must set goal for yourself as well as your personal goal of what you trying to achieves.
- Forget Finding the “Right” Answer, don't think about the "Right" answers, always look into what you can do to change or do better. Another way of saying don't take the "Right" answer and stop there, go beyond it and see what can be improve from your finding or more.


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Fiona’s Answer

There are many many different areas of law and they are vastly different. When you begin your degree, try to seize every opportunity to try out different areas of law - for example, you can apply to different internships with law firms (international firms will normally specialise in corporate / finance matters, whilst smaller firms may specialise in commercial / family / property matters), try out mini-pupillages with barrister chambers (I am not sure if the system applies where you are, but common law system will distinguish between solicitors and barristers). I started off thinking I would be suited for litigious work, but after one summer at barrister chambers, I discovered it is definitely not something I am suited to. I then applied for international firms and discovered that Banking and Finance is my area. Transactional work is very different to litigious work generally.

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Charlotte’s Answer

As with any job/career choice, you should think about what interests and inspires you. Assuming that you have already decided that you want to practice law (i.e., understanding the time and financial commitment of law school), once you are in law school you will probably enjoy certain legal topics more than others. For example, you may find contract law, constitutional law or criminal law to be more interesting than commercial transactions or property law. But it is one thing to find a subject that is intellectually stimulating and another thing to do it day in and day out. Family law is an area that could be very interesting, but it can be extremely difficult to deal with everyday (emotionally taxing and you will also see the ugly side of people!). And you should also ask yourself what kind of setting you'd like to work in - maybe you prefer a corporate setting as opposed to a small law firm where you are at the beck and call of managing partners. When I was considering law school many years ago, I did not have a lot of opportunities to see what the everyday life of an attorney was - I lived in a small town and did not know any attorneys in the area that I was interested in. Now, you have access to so much more information and you should take advantage of that! You can research schools that have internship programs, or if you live in an area where there are a lot of law firms and companies with legal departments, you can see if they have opportunities for students (volunteer or research projects, or even informational interviews). Even just reading the news headlines may spark an interest - you can actually listen to Supreme Court arguments right now that are happening over the phone - that is pretty cool in my opinion. The last thing I would say is, don't restrict yourself to the law. I got a law degree but decided after many years of practicing that I would rather work on the business side of things. While a legal education is interesting and great for analytical thinking, it is also a huge financial commitment that should not be undertaken lightly. You can get amazing experience and education in so many ways, all the while figuring out what you want to do as a profession. Take advantage of all the resources at your fingertips and ask a lot of questions! Good luck!

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Jay’s Answer

Hello! I think 2 factors you might consider for this (or any career) would include (i) income potential, and (ii) personal every day enjoyment. I would recommend focusing on (ii) your enjoyment of the field as your primary motivator - because this will create sustainability for you and enthusiasm and passion often leads to (i) income potential.

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