As discussed by Charlotte Burmby in a recent article, studying for a law degree doesn’t necessarily mean you have to devote your whole life to a career within it. A degree in law is diverse and will set you up to apply for a range of different jobs in a range of different fields. You are guaranteed to take away a vast amount of transferable skills from your degree, including the ability to research, analyse and communicate. These skills combined with many more, are only going to help you achieve career goals, whether law related or not.
We have mentioned those careers closely linked to that of a lawyer such as becoming a paralegal or legal executive, but what else can you do with a law degree?
An in-house lawyer essentially works for a business or organisation; therefore, they are responsible for the needs of one client. Training can be done in-house or within a private firm. Working as a lawyer in this capacity requires a higher level of commercial awareness and an understanding of how a business runs. So, if corporate law is a big point of interest for you, this could be the route to take.
As a law student you are constantly learning how to synthesize your ideas.
There are also careers based entirely around the legal profession which require less commitment if the lengthy training period is not for you.
The Justice System:
There are a diverse range of careers based entirely around our justice system.
Her Majesty’s Court and Tribunals Service:
A number of people with qualifying law degrees may go on to work within their local court. Roles within the Court and Tribunals Service include legal advisers, ushers and court clerks. To become a legal adviser, unlike a paralegal, you must be a qualified lawyer. However, this is not the case for clerks or ushers. A court clerk is responsible mostly for assisting the judge, mainly taking on an administrative role. An usher is responsible for preparing the courtroom and taking care of the witnesses and defendants of a case.
Her Majesty’s Prison Service:
The justice system is an extremely important part of our society and there are a number of individuals working towards ensuring that it runs smoothly. There are a number of jobs you could pursue within the prison service, such as becoming a prison officer. Prison officers work directly with prisoners, supervising their behaviour and encouraging them to address their issues. There are also a vast range of opportunities to work with prisoners as a way of encouraging their rehabilitation, such as teaching new practical skills and educating them academically.
If the law in practice is not something that interests you, then continuing your academic study could be the way to go. Many students after completing their degree, legal or otherwise, choose to enroll to further their study through a master’s or otherwise. If academia is something that interests you, you could continue along this path in order to become a teacher or lecturer in your chosen subject. Many individuals choose to revert back to study or progress to teaching after qualifying as a lawyer, or having pursued an alternative career.
Journalism (Legal or otherwise):
If a law degree is going to teach you anything, it is how to research and construct an argument. As a law student you are constantly learning how to synthesize your ideas. These skills could be invaluable when it comes to providing you with a platform to progress into the field of journalism. This is another common career choice for those who have previously studied law. Having a legal background could help you to stand out when applying for such jobs, whether you wish to write for a legal publication or not. Furthermore, once obtained, the depth of understanding and knowledge you will gain regarding important worldly issues will only assist you if you wish to pursue a legal career after all.
Accountancy, banking and finance:
Working in the city for a bank or an accountancy firm could also be seen as a sensible career choice for someone who has obtained a degree in law. A lot of your academic study at University may tie into the knowledge required to work in this sector, as it will all be building and developing your awareness of the commercial world. Common skills such as the ability to advise people and communicate with others are ones which tend to overlap between the legal and financial professions. So, if you prefer dealing with money and do not wish to practice law in this sector, considering a career in the financial world could be a good option for you.
A law degree can be very useful in paving the way for you to fulfill any career aspirations you may have. These may be related to law, or perhaps you wish to delve into the business world by way of a career in human resources or similar. Other career options could include joining the police force or working within politics (just consider how many politicians have law degrees). The possibilities are almost certainly, endless.