Working as a lawyer is not only a prestigious career but also a lucrative way to make a living while dispensing justice to those who need it. However, there are many pros and cons of being a lawyer – which we discuss to give you a better idea of what you’re in for, if you choose this line of work:
Positives of Being a Lawyer
Variety of career options
Perhaps one of the most significant benefits of working as a lawyer is that there are a variety of career opportunities to be had, both in the public and private sectors. For instance, you might work as a criminal prosecutor in your community or a criminal defense lawyer to guard and protect the rights of innocent people. You could even become a public defender to aid those who don’t have the means to support themselves.
Run your own practice
The kind of work you end up doing as a lawyer depends a great deal on how much flexibility you want to have in your daily schedule. Many lawyers invest in their own business right after graduating from law school or join hands with their fellow law graduates to open a practice in partnership. Alternatively, you can also work for a corporation, become a public servant, or join a major law firm as a junior lawyer. There are options aplenty, and with each line comes a unique set of challenges and rewards.
There’s money to be made
Although the primary goal of a lawyer shouldn’t be to get into law just to make money – successful lawyers do make a very lucrative living, because that’s how it is. Good legal advice comes at a hefty price – and the satisfaction of knowing that you helped someone get their due right and get paid to do it, is a rewarding feeling indeed. The median salary of a lawyer in 2018 was $120,910!
Negatives of Being A Lawyer
You may not get along with all clients
Most lawyers don’t get to choose the clients they work with. Well, they could handpick the ones they like, but that’s going to put a severe cap on how much they earn from each case. Therefore, lawyers need to be flexible and open-minded – they need to have the ability to work with clients from all demographics, no matter how stressful or frustrating it may be to do so.
Long work hours
Downsizing at law firms and an ever-increasing workload means that lawyers now have to put in more work than ever. The rise in the demand for global legal advice, especially online, means that lawyers must be available for consultations around the clock.
Furthermore, high competition in the law sector has forced many lawyers to spend additional time on business management activities and client development, an addition to providing consultation.
You may have to deal with a ‘poor’ public image
Unfortunately, even today, lawyers have a bad reputation in general due to frivolous lawsuits, increasing billing rates, headline-breaking stories of lawyers misbehaving with clients, and the like.
Hopefully, you won’t have to deal with this, but there are no guarantees!
These pros and cons of being a lawyer should ultimately help you decide if this a career you want to pursue.