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Is being a lawyer fun or it is mostly like doing paperwork all the time?

My parents want me to become a lawyer, but I’m not sure. #undecided #lawyer #law #legal #legal-services


You 'have fun' when you do what you love. If you go into law because of your parents, you may be quickly disappointed and easily frustrated because lawyers are simply professional problem-solvers and counselors. There are transactional attorneys such as intellectual property attorneys, patent attorneys, and general counsels whose duties involve a lot of paperwork. However, 'paperwork' is essential to what we do. Some attorneys prefer litigation (i.e. courtroom). There are so many facets to the practice of law. I enjoy helping others and that is where the 'fun' comes from personally. Also, I manage my own practice. Do what you love and know yourself - what are you good at? What skills have others complimented you on? Focus on those and build on them. All the best! Rachael Aminu

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Kim’s Answer

Regan,

I am not a lawyer, but, have done some work with some of them. I just wanted to make sure you got an answer to this. I think a lot will depend on what area of law you go into. Also, law school is extremely difficult. If you decide to become a lawyer only because that is what your parents want you to do, and it's not something you truly want, school will be very hard. Yes, law can be "fun," but it also involves a lot of research and writing. Very few cases go to trial, but you will still work at preparing your cases as if you are going to go to trial. No detail can be overlooked. I'm not sure if any of this would be fun to you. I like the mental challenge, trying to find ways to get people to say what you need them to say when you have them under oath, for example, such as in depositions. Also, not all law involves handling cases. You could be writing wills, drafting contracts, etc.

I hope you get this worked out in a way that is satisfactory to you! What will you be if you decide not to become a lawyer?

Kim


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Madison’s Answer

Any career can be fun if you enjoy the work you are doing. Almost all lawyers deal with a lot of paperwork, but there are different types of paperwork depending on the type of law you practice. Typically, transactional lawyers deal with more paperwork than litigation lawyers. I really enjoy being a lawyer and have fun doing it! You may as well

In order to have fun, look for a job that you will sincerely enjoy- not just what your parents would like you to do. You will spend a lot of time at your job over your life so find something to make you happy :)


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Phi’s Answer

Being a lawyer can be very fun and very rewarding. But as the other posts have indicated it requires a lot of work, time, money, and attention to detail. As with most challenging things in life it can be well worth it. You indicated that your parents want you to be a lawyer. Do you have any interest in it? I think it's important for you to explore the legal field yourself. See if you can get a job or internship even a volunteer opportunity in a law firm, with a government office with attorneys, a legal non-profit, or even in a courthouse. Anything to give you exposure to lawyers and the legal field. That will help you understand what it entails and if you think it might be fun.


There are different fields of practice and different types of things you can do with a law degree. You do not necessarily have to practice law. You could use your JD in other ways just depending on what you want. So I think you could find being a lawyer a lot of fun. I gage from your question that you do not want to be doing paperwork at a desk all day. There are a lot of attorneys who don't. Some attorneys spend many of their days in court and at hearings or meeting with their clients. Some attorneys teach. Some work in government or for non-profits.


I hope that this helps give you an idea of the broad range of things you can do with your law degree if you choose to pursue it. Good luck!


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Charlotte’s Answer

Hi Regan,

I definitely agree with Kim's response that going into the law (or any career for that matter) mainly because it is the career that your parents want for you, is not the best reason to choose a career path, and law school is far from "fun" even if you find it interesting and a good education. I went to law school and thought I wanted to be a lawyer; I practiced financial services law for over 6 years and decided to leave the practice of law for a business-side job, mostly because it was repetitive and I didn't feel like I was working for a higher mission, as I was in a small law firm. I can honestly say that, if I had gone to law school based solely on my parents' desires, I would not have finished! It is very challenging and competitive in addition to being costly.


It's true that your day-to-day activities will largely depend on the area of law, however, almost all legal jobs require some level of research, analysis, writing, and advocacy. And as Kim pointed out, attention to detail is probably the biggest hallmark of being an attorney, regardless of your job. Most legal practitioners' main job is to advocate for their clients, and whether they are representing them in court, in business transactions, or trying to advance their clients' cause in a policy context (lobbying for example), some research into the current laws/regulations, and then presenting that information orally or in writing will be required.   


I recommend looking into different legal careers (this link is a good place to start) to see if any of it interests you.

https://www.thebalancecareers.com/legal-career-opportunities-2164281


Bear in mind that law school can be very expensive, and there are many other legal degrees that you can pursue that are not a JD (which requires 3 years of schooling). If you choose a legal practicing job, you would also need to pass a state bar exam, which is very difficult and entails keeping up a certain level of continuing legal education each year. Best of luck on whatever career path you choose!



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Alexandra’s Answer

It can be a little of both :) it depends what type of law you practice. In my area of specialty - privacy law - there is some paperwork when I review contracts and policies, but most of my work is talking to people, understanding what they want to do and helping them solve problems. for example, if a company wants to launch a new product or initiative, what can I do to help them achieve that goals which remaining compliant with relevant laws. My job is fun because it's intellectually challenging and I enjoy collaborating with my colleagues and business partners.

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Richard’s Answer

My wife is a bankruptcy attorney. From what she tells me, it depends what kind of lawyer you wish to be. Some appellate attorneys spend a lot of time researching and writing briefs (arguments to the Court). Others are trial attorneys and enjoy speaking in front of others. There are so many different kinds of specialties of lawyers. If you find your niche, you learn that one area. Choose the field that suits you best so you will be happy going to work every day.

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Jacob’s Answer

I have been a lawyer for a handful of years and I have to say at times it can be extremely fun and rewarding, and other times it can be a lot of work. There are many different kinds of lawyers (just like there are different doctors that specialize in a certain area), so you should think about what interests you most. Some like defending people in court, some prefer seeking out civil justice, and others enjoy areas related to employment or government law. I work in the technology sector where I represent my employer on different types contracts related to technology and intellectual property. I never go to court (unlike a litigator), and as a corporate lawyer I do sometimes have to review agreements that are several pages in length. To me I find that interesting. A really fun part of my job is getting on calls and negotiating with parties over terms and coming to an agreement. I find the work collaborative, and feel a sense of accomplishment when I have finalize terms with the other side. I think if you interested in a challenging but rewarding career, then being an attorney has all kinds of different options to fit your interests. It is important that you be sure that you really are interested in having a career as an attorney before you get started, as there is a serious time and financial commitment in order to become a licensed attorney. Good luck!

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