From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Helena Normanton in English court dress, c. 1950[a]
NamesAttorney, advocate, barrister, counsel, counsellor, solicitor, legal executive
Activity sectors
Law, business
CompetenciesAnalytical skills
Critical thinking
Legal research
Legal writing
Legal ethics
Education required
Professional requirements
Fields of
Courts, government, law firms, NGOs, legal aid, corporations
Related jobs
Barrister, solicitor, legislator, judge, jurist, advocate, attorney, legal executive, prosecutor, law clerk, law professor, civil law notary, magistrate, politician

A lawyer is a person who practices law. The role of a lawyer varies greatly, across different legal jurisdictions. A lawyer can be classified as an advocate, attorney, barrister, canon lawyer, civil law notary, counsel, solicitor, legal executive, and public servant — with each role having different functions and privileges.[1] Working as a lawyer generally involves the practical application of abstract legal theories and knowledge to solve specific problems. Some lawyers also work primarily in advancing the interests of the law and legal profession.[2][3]


Different legal jurisdictions have different requirements for determining who is recognized as a lawyer. As a result, the meaning of the term "lawyer" may vary from place to place.

Some jurisdictions have two types of lawyers: barristers and solicitors, while others fuse the two. A barrister (also known as an advocate or counselor in some jurisdictions) is a lawyer who typically specializes in arguing before courts, particularly in higher courts. A solicitor (or attorney) is a lawyer who is trained to prepare cases and give advice on legal subjects. Depending on jurisdiction, solicitors can also represent people in lower courts but do not ordinarily have rights of audience in higher courts. Both solicitors and barristers are trained in law. However, in jurisdictions where there is a split profession, only barristers are admitted as members of a bar association.

Additionally, England and Wales have many other classifications of lawyers, which include registered foreign lawyers, patent attorneys, trademark attorneys, licensed conveyancers, public notaries, commissioners for oaths, immigration advisers and chartered legal executives. Under the English Legal Services Act 2007, "lawyer" is not a protected title. In other jurisdictions, like the United States, there are strict restrictions on who may call themselves a lawyer, with paralegals and patent agents generally disallowed.[4][5][6]

The distinction between barristers and solicitors originated in the English legal system, but many countries which have adopted English law have eliminated the distinction. Countries such as New Zealand, Canada (except for Quebec, which practices civil law), India, Pakistan, and the US have adopted a fused profession, where all lawyers have the privileges of both barristers and solicitors.[7]

Some fused-profession jurisdictions use one term to describe lawyers generally. For example, US lawyers are typically referred to as "attorneys",[6] while Indian and Pakistani lawyers are known as "advocates". Other fused jurisdictions use terms such as "barrister and solicitor" or "attorney and counselor" to describe lawyers in general. In countries like the US, however, the term "trial lawyer" typically describes the work of a lawyer who specialises primarily in arguing cases.

In some jurisdictions, the terminology of "barrister" and "solicitor" may still be applied to lawyers who deal in the specific kinds of work barristers and solicitors generally do.

In most countries, particularly civil law countries, a tradition has existed of giving many legal tasks to a variety of civil law notaries, clerks, and scriveners.[8][9] These countries do not have "lawyers" in terms of a single general-purpose legal services provider.[10] Rather, their legal professions consist of a large number of different kinds of legally-trained persons, known as jurists, some of whom are advocates who are licensed to practice in the courts.[11][12][13] Because each country has traditionally had its own method of dividing up legal work among its legal professionals, it has been difficult to formulate accurate generalizations that cover all the countries with multiple legal professions.[14]


England, the mother of the common law jurisdictions, emerged from the Middle Ages with a complexity in its legal professions similar to that of civil law jurisdictions, but then evolved by the 19th century to a single division between barristers and solicitors. An equivalent division developed between advocates and procurators in some civil law countries; these two types did not always monopolize the practice of law, in that they coexisted with civil law notaries.[15][16][17]

Several countries that originally had two or more legal professions have since fused or united their professions into a single type of lawyer.[18][19][20][21] Most countries in this category are common law countries, though France, a civil law country, merged its jurists in 1990 and 1991 in response to Anglo-American competition.[22] In countries with fused professions, a lawyer is usually permitted to carry out all or nearly all the responsibilities listed below.

Oral argument in the courts[edit]

Oral arguments being made before the New York Court of Appeals

Arguing a client's case before a judge or jury in a court of law is the traditional province of the barrister,[23] and of advocates in some civil law jurisdictions.[24] However, the boundary between barristers and solicitors has evolved. In England today, solicitor advocates can argue at all levels of court, and barristers must compete directly with solicitors in many trial courts.[25][needs update] In countries like the United States, which have fused legal professions, there are trial lawyers who specialize in trying cases in court, but trial lawyers do not have a legal monopoly like barristers in some jurisdictions. In some countries, litigants have the option of arguing pro se, or on their own behalf. It is common for litigants to appear unrepresented before certain courts like small claims courts; many such courts do not allow lawyers to speak for their clients, in an effort to save money for participants in a small case.[26] In other countries, like Venezuela, no one may appear before a judge unless represented by a lawyer.[27] The advantage of the latter regime is that lawyers are familiar with the court's customs and procedures, making the legal system more efficient for all involved. Unrepresented parties often damage their own credibility or slow the court down as a result of their inexperience.[28][29]

Research and drafting of court papers[edit]

Often, lawyers brief a court in writing on the issues in a case before the issues can be orally argued. They may have to perform extensive research into relevant facts. Also, they draft legal papers and prepare for an oral argument.

In split common law jurisdictions, the usual division of labor is that a solicitor will obtain the facts of the case from the client and then brief a barrister, usually in writing.[30] The barrister then researches and drafts the necessary court pleadings, which will be filed and served by the solicitor, and orally argues the case.[31]

In Spanish civil law, the procurator merely signs and presents the papers to the court, but it is the advocate who drafts the papers and argues the case.[32] In other civil law jurisdictions, like Japan, a scrivener or clerk may fill out court forms and draft simple papers for laypersons who cannot afford or do not need attorneys, and advise them on how to manage and argue their own cases.[33]

Advocacy in administrative hearings[edit]

In most developed countries, the legislature has granted original jurisdiction over highly technical matters to executive branch administrative agencies which oversee such things. As a result, some lawyers have become specialists in administrative law. In a few countries, there is a special category of jurists with a monopoly over this form of advocacy; for example, France formerly had conseils juridiques (who were merged into the main legal profession in 1991).[34] In other countries, like the United States, lawyers have been effectively barred by statute from certain types of administrative hearings in order to preserve their informality.[35]

Client intake and counseling[edit]

An important aspect of a lawyer's job is developing and managing relationships with clients or the employees of the government or corporation. In some fused common law jurisdictions, the client-lawyer relationship begins with an intake interview where the lawyer gets to know the client personally, following which the lawyer discovers the facts of the client's case, clarifies what the client wants to accomplish, and shapes the client's expectations as to what actually can be accomplished. The second to last step begins to develop various claims or defenses for the client. Lastly, the lawyer explains her or his fees to the client.[36][37]

In England, only solicitors were traditionally in direct contact with the client,[38][needs update] but barristers nowadays may apply for rights to liaise with clients directly. The solicitor retained a barrister if one was necessary and acted as an intermediary between the barrister and the client.[39] In most cases barristers were obliged, under what is known as the "cab rank rule", to accept instructions for a case in an area in which they held themselves out as practicing, at a court at which they normally appeared and at their usual rates.[40][41]

Legal advice[edit]

Legal advice is the application of abstract principles of law to the concrete facts of the client's case to advise the client about what they should do next. In some jurisdictions, only a properly licensed lawyer may provide legal advice to clients for good consideration, even if no lawsuit is contemplated or is in progress.[42][43][44] In these jurisdictions, even conveyancers and corporate in-house counsel must first get a license to practice, though they may actually spend very little of their careers in court. Some jurisdictions have made the violation of such a rule the crime of unauthorized practice of law.[45]

In other countries, jurists who hold law degrees are allowed to provide legal advice to individuals or to corporations, and it is irrelevant if they lack a license and cannot appear in court.[46][47] Some countries go further; in England and Wales, there is no general prohibition on the giving of legal advice.[48] Singapore does not have any admission requirements for in-house counsel.[49] Sometimes civil law notaries are allowed to give legal advice, as in Belgium.[50]

In many countries, non-jurist accountants may provide what is technically legal advice in tax and accounting matters.[51]

Protecting intellectual property[edit]

In virtually all countries, patents, trademarks, industrial designs and other forms of intellectual property must be formally registered with a government agency in order to receive maximum protection under the law. The division of such work among lawyers, licensed non-lawyer jurists/agents, and ordinary clerks or scriveners varies greatly from one country to the next.[33][52]

The trend in industrialized countries since the 1970s has been to greatly restrict the role of clerks and scriveners in patent and trademark work, and to require these functions to be performed only by lawyers or other licensed agents. This ensures that all work product in such cases receives the full protection of attorney-client privilege.

In the United States, for example, the Patent and Trademark Office may not speak with anyone but the applicant's attorney about pending applications, and all documents filed in connection with a pending application are automatically accorded attorney-client privilege. The European Patent Office has a similar policy. In contrast, many countries in the world do not recognize attorney-client privilege for work product related to intellectual property, or have only very limited recognition of the privilege. These countries include China, Japan, Korea, much of Southeast Asia, and most of Latin America. As a result, great care must be taken in these countries to protect intellectual property, as any work product related to a pending application may be disclosed to the public.

Many companies choose to file their applications in the United States or Europe first, and then file for protection in other countries where attorney-client privilege is not recognized. This allows them to keep their work product confidential while they are still in the process of perfecting their invention or design.[53]

Negotiating and drafting contracts[edit]

In some countries, the negotiating and drafting of contracts is considered to be similar to the provision of legal advice, so that it is subject to the licensing requirement explained above.[54] In others, jurists or notaries may negotiate or draft contracts.[55]


Conveyancing is the drafting of the documents necessary for the transfer of real property, such as deeds and mortgages. In some jurisdictions, all real estate transactions must be carried out by a lawyer.[56] Historically, conveyancing accounted for about half of English solicitors' income, though this has since changed,[57] and a 1978 study showed that conveyancing "accounts for as much as 80 percent of solicitor-client contact in New South Wales."[58] In most common law jurisdictions outside of the United States, this monopoly arose from an 1804 law[59] that was introduced by William Pitt the Younger as a quid pro quo for the raising of fees on the certification of legal professionals such as barristers, solicitors, attorneys, and notaries.[60]

In others, the use of a lawyer is optional and banks, title companies, or realtors may be used instead.[61] In some civil law jurisdictions, real estate transactions are handled by civil law notaries.[62] In England and Wales, a special class of legal professionals–the licensed conveyancer–is also allowed to carry out conveyancing services for reward.[63]

Carrying out the intent of the deceased[edit]

In many countries, only lawyers have the legal authority to draft wills, trusts, and any other documents that ensure the efficient disposition of a person's property after death. In some civil law countries, this responsibility is handled by civil law notaries.[55]

Prosecution and defense of criminal suspects[edit]

In many civil law countries, prosecutors are trained and employed as part of the judiciary. They are law-trained jurists, but may not necessarily be lawyers in the sense that the word is used in the common law world.[64] In common law countries, prosecutors are usually lawyers holding regular licenses who work for the government office that files criminal charges against suspects. Criminal defense lawyers specialize in the defense of those charged with any crimes.[65]


Law Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava (Slovakia)

The educational prerequisites for becoming a lawyer vary greatly from country to country. In some countries, law is taught by a faculty of law, which is a department of a university's general undergraduate college.[66] Law students in those countries pursue a Master or Bachelor of Laws degree. In some countries it is common or even required for students to earn another bachelor's degree at the same time. It is often followed by a series of advanced examinations, apprenticeships, and additional coursework at special government institutes.[67]

In other countries, particularly the UK and US, law is primarily taught at law schools.[68] In America, the American Bar Association decides which law schools to approve for the purposes of admission to the bar.[69] In jurisdictions following the English system, individuals with a law degree may have to undergo further training before qualifying as a lawyer, such as the Bar Professional Training Course.[70] In the United States[71] and countries following the American model, such as Canada with the exception Quebec,[72] law schools are graduate schools where a bachelor's degree is a prerequisite for admission. Most law schools are part of universities but a few are independent institutions. Law schools in the United States award graduating students a J.D. (Juris Doctor), as opposed to the Bachelor of Laws, as the practitioner's law degree.[73] Many schools also offer post-doctoral law degrees such as the LL.M (Master of Laws), or the S.J.D. (Doctor of Juridical Science) for students interested in advancing their legal knowledge.[74]

The methods and quality of legal education vary widely. Some countries require extensive clinical training in the form of apprenticeships or special clinical courses.[75] Others, like Venezuela, do not.[76] A few countries prefer to teach through assigned readings of judicial opinions (the casebook method) followed by intense in-class cross-examination by the professor (the Socratic method).[77][78] Many others focus on theoretical aspects of law, leaving the professional and practical training of lawyers to apprenticeship and employment contexts.[79][80][81] Depending upon the country, a typical class size could range from five students in a seminar to five hundred in a giant lecture room.[82]

Some countries, particularly industrialized ones, have a traditional preference for full-time law programs,[83] while in developing countries, students often work full- or part-time to pay the tuition and fees of their part-time law programs.[84][85] Law schools in developing countries share several common problems, such as an over reliance on practicing judges and lawyers who treat teaching as a part-time hobby (and a concomitant scarcity of full-time law professors);[86][87] incompetent faculty with questionable credentials;[88] and textbooks that lag behind the current state of the law by two or three decades.[86][89]

Earning the right to practice law[edit]

Clara Shortridge Foltz, admitted to the California Bar through an examination before attending law school

Some jurisdictions grant a "diploma privilege" to certain institutions, so that merely earning a degree or credential from those institutions is the primary qualification for practicing law.[90] Mexico allows anyone with a law degree to practice law.[91] However, in a large number of countries, a law student must pass a bar examination (or a series of such examinations) before receiving a license to practice.[90][92][93] In a handful of U.S. states, one may become an attorney (a so-called country lawyer) by simply "reading law" and passing the bar examination, without having to attend law school first, although very few people actually become lawyers that way.[94]

Some countries require a formal apprenticeship with an experienced practitioner, while others do not.[95] A few jurisdictions still allow an apprenticeship in place of any kind of formal legal education, though the number of persons who actually become lawyers that way is increasingly rare.[96]

Career structure[edit]

U.S. President Abraham Lincoln is a famous example of a lawyer who became a politician.

The career structure of lawyers varies widely from one country to the next.

Common and civil law[edit]

In most common law countries, especially those with fused professions, lawyers have many options over the course of their careers. Besides private practice, they can become a prosecutor, government counsel, corporate in-house counsel, administrative law judge, judge, arbitrator, or law professor.[97] There are also many non-legal jobs for which legal training is good preparation, such as politician, corporate executive, government administrator, investment banker, entrepreneur, or journalist.[98] In developing countries like India, a large majority of law students never actually practice, but simply use their law degree as a foundation for careers in other fields.[99]

In most civil law countries, lawyers generally structure their legal education around their chosen specialty; the boundaries between different types of lawyers are carefully defined and hard to cross.[100] After one earns a law degree, career mobility may be severely constrained.[101] For example, unlike their Anglo-American counterparts,[102] it is difficult for German judges to leave the bench and become advocates in private practice.[103] Another interesting example is France, where for much of the 20th century, all judiciary officials were graduates of an elite professional school for judges.[104]

In a few civil law countries, such as Sweden,[105] the legal profession is not rigorously bifurcated and everyone within it can easily change roles and arenas.


In many countries, lawyers are general practitioners who represent clients in a broad field of legal matters.[106] In others, there has been a tendency since the start of the 20th century for lawyers to specialize early in their careers.[107][108] In countries where specialization is prevalent, many lawyers specialize in representing one side in one particular area of the law; thus, it is common in the United States to hear of plaintiffs' personal injury attorneys.[109][110]


Lawyers in private practice generally work in specialized businesses known as law firms,[111] with the exception of English barristers. The vast majority of law firms worldwide are small businesses that range in size from 1 to 10 lawyers.[112] The United States,[113] United Kingdom and Australia are exceptions, home to several firms with more than 1,000 lawyers after a wave of mergers in the late 1990s.

Notably, barristers in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and some states in Australia do not work in law firms. Those who offer their services to members of the general public—as opposed to those working in-house — are generally self-employed.[114] Most work in groupings known as "sets" or "chambers", where some administrative and marketing costs are shared. An important effect of this different organizational structure is that there is no conflict of interest where barristers in the same chambers work for opposing sides in a case, and in some specialized chambers this is commonplace.

Some large businesses employ their own legal staff in a legal department.[115] Other organizations buy in legal services from outside companies.[116]

Professional associations and regulation[edit]

Stamp issued to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the American Bar Association

Mandatory licensing and membership in professional organizations[edit]

In some jurisdictions, either the judiciary[117] or the Ministry of Justice[118] directly supervises the admission, licensing, and regulation of lawyers.

Other jurisdictions, by statute, tradition, or court order, have granted such powers to a professional association which all lawyers must belong to.[119] In the U.S., such associations are known as mandatory, integrated, or unified bar associations. In the Commonwealth of Nations, similar organizations are known as Inns of Court, bar councils or law societies.[120] In civil law countries, comparable organizations are known as Orders of Advocates,[121] Chambers of Advocates,[122] Colleges of Advocates,[123] Faculties of Advocates,[124] or similar names. Generally, a nonmember caught practicing law may be liable for the crime of unauthorized practice of law.[125]

In common law countries with divided legal professions, barristers traditionally belong to the bar council (or an Inn of Court) and solicitors belong to the law society. In the English-speaking world, the largest mandatory professional association of lawyers is the State Bar of California, with 230,000 members.

Some countries admit and regulate lawyers at the national level, so that a lawyer, once licensed, can argue cases in any court in the land. This can be seen in countries including New Zealand, Japan, and Belgium.[126] Others, especially those with federal governments, tend to regulate lawyers at the state or provincial level; this is the case in the United States,[127] Canada,[128] Australia,[129] and Switzerland,[130] to name a few. Brazil is the most well-known federal government that regulates lawyers at the national level.[131]

Some countries, like Italy, regulate lawyers at the regional level,[132] and a few, like Belgium, even regulate them at the local level (that is, they are licensed and regulated by the local equivalent of bar associations but can advocate in courts nationwide).[133] In Germany, lawyers are admitted to regional bars and may appear for clients before all courts nationwide with the exception of the Federal Court of Justice of Germany (Bundesgerichtshof or BGH.[134]

Generally, geographic limitations can be troublesome for a lawyer who discovers that his client's cause requires him to litigate in a court beyond the normal geographic scope of his license. Although most courts have special pro hac vice rules for such occasions, the lawyer will still have to deal with a different set of professional responsibility rules, as well as the possibility of other differences in substantive and procedural law.

Some countries grant licenses to non-resident lawyers, who may then appear regularly on behalf of foreign clients. Others require all lawyers to live in the jurisdiction or to even hold national citizenship as a prerequisite for receiving a license to practice. But the trend in industrialized countries since the 1970s has been to abolish citizenship and residency restrictions. For example, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down a citizenship requirement on equality rights grounds in 1989,[135] and similarly, American citizenship and residency requirements were struck down as unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1973 and 1985, respectively.[136] The European Court of Justice made similar decisions in 1974 and 1977 striking down citizenship restrictions in Belgium and France.[137]

Regulation of lawyers[edit]

A key difference among countries is whether lawyers should be regulated solely by an independent judiciary and its subordinate institutions (a self-regulating legal profession),[138] or whether lawyers should be subject to supervision by the Ministry of Justice in the executive branch.

In most civil law countries, the government has traditionally exercised tight control over the legal profession in order to ensure a steady supply of loyal judges and bureaucrats. That is, lawyers were expected first and foremost to serve the state, and the availability of counsel for private litigants was an afterthought.[139] Even in civil law countries like Norway which have partially self-regulating professions, the Ministry of Justice is the sole issuer of licenses, and makes its own independent re-evaluation of a lawyer's fitness to practice after a lawyer has been expelled from the Advocates' Association.[118] Brazil is an unusual exception in that its national Order of Advocates has become a fully self-regulating institution with direct control over licensing and has successfully resisted government attempts to place it under the control of the Ministry of Labor.[140][141]

Of all the civil law countries, communist countries historically went the farthest towards total state control, with all communist lawyers forced to practice in collectives by the mid-1950s.[142][143] China is a prime example: technically, the People's Republic of China did not have lawyers, and instead had only poorly trained, state-employed "legal workers" prior to the enactment of a comprehensive reform package in 1996 by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress.[144]

In contrast, common law lawyers have traditionally regulated themselves through institutions where the influence of non-lawyers, if any, was weak and indirect, despite nominal state control.[145] Such institutions have been traditionally dominated by private practitioners who opposed strong state control of the profession on the grounds that it would endanger the ability of lawyers to zealously and competently advocate their clients' causes in the adversarial system of justice.[146] However, the concept of the self-regulating profession has been criticized as a sham which serves to legitimize the professional monopoly while protecting the profession from public scrutiny.[147] In some jurisdictions, mechanisms have been astonishingly ineffective, and penalties have been light or nonexistent.[148][149][150]

Voluntary associations[edit]

Lawyers are always free to form voluntary associations of their own, apart from any licensing or mandatory membership that may be required by the laws of their jurisdiction. Like their mandatory counterparts, such organizations may exist at all geographic levels.[91][151] In American English, such associations are known as voluntary bar associations.[152] The largest voluntary professional association of lawyers in the English-speaking world is the American Bar Association. In some countries, like France and Italy, lawyers have also formed trade unions.[153]

Cultural perception[edit]

A British political cartoon showing a barrister and a solicitor throwing black paint at a woman sitting at the feet of a statue representing Justice

Hostility towards the legal profession is a widespread phenomenon. For example, William Shakespeare famously wrote, "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers" in Henry VI, Part 2, Act IV, Scene 2. The legal profession was abolished in Prussia in 1780 and in France in 1789, though both countries eventually realized that their judicial systems could not function efficiently without lawyers.[154] Complaints about too many lawyers were common in both England and the United States in the 1840s,[155][156] Germany in the 1910s,[157] and in Australia,[158] Canada,[159] the United States,[160][161][162] and Scotland[163] in the 1980s.

Public distrust of lawyers reached record heights in the United States after the Watergate scandal.[162][164] In the aftermath of Watergate, legal self-help books became popular among those who wished to solve their legal problems without having to deal with lawyers.[165] Lawyer jokes also soared in popularity in English-speaking North America as a result of Watergate.[166]

In Adventures in Law and Justice, legal researcher Bryan Horrigan dedicated a chapter to "Myths, Fictions, and Realities" about law and illustrated the perennial criticism of lawyers as "amoral [...] guns for hire"[167] with a quote from Ambrose Bierce's satirical The Devil's Dictionary that summarized the noun as: "LAWYER, n. One skilled in circumvention of the law."[168]

More generally, in Legal Ethics: A Comparative Study, law professor Geoffrey C. Hazard, Jr. with Angelo Dondi briefly examined the "regulations attempting to suppress lawyer misconduct" and noted that their similarity around the world was paralleled by a "remarkable consistency" in certain "persistent grievances" about lawyers that transcends both time and locale, from the Bible to medieval England to dynastic China.[169] The authors then generalized these common complaints about lawyers as being classified into five "general categories" as follows:

  • abuse of litigation in various ways, including using dilatory tactics and false evidence and making frivolous arguments to the courts
  • preparation of false documentation, such as false deeds, contracts, or wills
  • deceiving clients and other persons and misappropriating property
  • procrastination in dealings with clients
  • charging excessive fees.[170]

Some studies have shown that suicide rates among lawyers in certain jurisdictions may be as much as six times higher than the average population, and commentators suggest that the low opinion the public has of lawyers, combined with their own high ideals of justice, which in practice they may see denied, increase the depression rates of those in this profession.[171][172] Additionally, lawyers are twice as likely to suffer from addiction to alcohol and other drugs.[173]


Peasants paying for legal services with produce in The Village Lawyer, c. 1621, by Pieter Brueghel the Younger

In the United States, lawyers typically earn between $45,000 and $160,000 per year, although earnings vary by age, experience, and practice setting.[174][175][176][177] Solo practitioners typically earn less than lawyers in corporate law firms but more than those working for state or local government.

Lawyers are paid for their work in a variety of ways. In private practice, they may work for an hourly fee according to a billable hour structure,[178] a contingency fee,[179] or a lump sum payment. Normally, most lawyers negotiate a written fee agreement up front and may require a non-refundable retainer in advance. Recent studies suggest that when lawyers charge a fixed fee rather than billing by the hour, they work less hard on behalf of clients, and clients get worse outcomes.[180][181] In many countries there are fee-shifting arrangements by which the loser must pay the winner's fees and costs; the United States is the major exception,[182] although in turn, its legislators have carved out many exceptions to the so-called "American Rule" of no fee shifting.

Lawyers working directly on the payroll of governments, nonprofits, and corporations usually earn a regular annual salary.[183] In many countries, with the notable exception of Germany,[184] lawyers can also volunteer their labor in the service of worthy causes through an arrangement called pro bono (short for pro bono publico, "for the common good").[185] Traditionally such work was performed on behalf of the poor, but in some countries it has now expanded to many other causes such as environmental law.

In some countries, there are legal aid lawyers who specialize in providing legal services to the indigent.[186][187] France and Spain even have formal fee structures by which lawyers are compensated by the government for legal aid cases on a per-case basis.[188] A similar system, though not as extensive or generous, operates in Australia, Canada, and South Africa.[189]

In other countries, legal aid specialists are practically nonexistent. This may be because non-lawyers are allowed to provide such services; in both Italy and Belgium, trade unions and political parties provide what can be characterized as legal aid services. Some legal aid in Belgium is also provided by young lawyer apprentices subsidized by local bar associations (known as the pro deo system), as well as consumer protection nonprofit organizations and Public Assistance Agencies subsidized by local governments.[190] In Germany, mandatory fee structures have enabled widespread implementation of affordable legal expense insurance.[191]


16th-century painting of a civil law notary, by Flemish painter Quentin Massys. A civil law notary is roughly analogous to a common law solicitor, except that, unlike solicitors, civil law notaries do not practice litigation to any degree.

Ancient Greece[edit]

The earliest people who could be described as "lawyers" were probably the orators of ancient Athens. However, Athenian orators faced serious structural obstacles. First, there was a rule that individuals were supposed to plead their own cases, which was soon bypassed by the increasing tendency of individuals to ask a "friend" for assistance.[192] However, around the middle of the fourth century, the Athenians disposed of the perfunctory request for a friend.[193] Second, a more serious obstacle, which the Athenian orators never completely overcame, was the rule that no one could take a fee to plead the cause of another. This law was widely disregarded in practice, but was never abolished, which meant that orators could never present themselves as legal professionals or experts.[194] They had to uphold the legal fiction that they were merely an ordinary citizen generously helping out a friend for free, and thus they could never organize into a real profession.[195] If one narrows the definition of lawyers to people who could practice the legal profession openly and legally, then the first lawyers would be the orators of ancient Rome.[196]

Ancient Rome[edit]

A law enacted in 204 BC barred Roman advocates from taking fees, but the law was widely ignored.[197] The ban on fees was abolished by Emperor Claudius, who legalized advocacy as a profession and allowed the Roman advocates to become the first lawyers who could practice openly—but he also imposed a fee ceiling of 10,000 sesterces.[198] This was apparently not much money; the Satires of Juvenal complained that there was no money in working as an advocate.[199]

Like their Greek contemporaries, early Roman advocates were trained in rhetoric, not law, and the judges before whom they argued were also not legally trained.[200] But very early on, unlike Athens, Rome developed a class of specialists who were learned in the law, known as jurisconsults (iuris consulti).[201] Jurisconsults were wealthy amateurs who dabbled in law as an intellectual hobby; they did not make their primary living from it.[201] They gave legal opinions (responsa) on legal issues to all comers (a practice known as publice respondere).[202] Roman judges and governors would routinely consult with an advisory panel of jurisconsults before rendering a decision, and advocates and ordinary people also went to jurisconsults for legal opinions.[201] The Romans were the first to have a class of people who spent their days thinking about legal problems, and this is why their law developed in a systematic and technical way.[201]

Detail from the sarcophagus of Roman lawyer Valerius Petronianus 315–320 AD. Picture by Giovanni Dall'Orto.

During the Roman Republic and the early Roman Empire, jurisconsults and advocates were unregulated, since the former were amateurs and the latter were technically illegal.[203] Any citizen could call himself an advocate or a legal expert, though whether people believed him would depend upon his personal reputation. This changed once Claudius legalized the legal profession. By the start of the Byzantine Empire, the legal profession had become well-established, heavily regulated, and highly stratified.[204] The centralization and bureaucratization of the profession was apparently gradual at first, but accelerated during the reign of Emperor Hadrian.[205] At the same time, the jurisconsults went into decline during the imperial period.[206]

By the fourth century, advocates had to be enrolled on the bar of a court to argue before it, they could only be attached to one court at a time, and there were restrictions on how many advocates could be enrolled at a particular court.[207] By the 380s, advocates were studying law in addition to rhetoric, thus reducing the need for a separate class of jurisconsults; in 460, Emperor Leo imposed a requirement that new advocates seeking admission had to produce testimonials from their teachers; and by the sixth century, a regular course of legal study lasting about four years was required for admission.[208] Claudius's fee ceiling lasted all the way into the Byzantine period, though by then it was measured at 100 solidi.[209] It was widely evaded, either through demands for maintenance and expenses or a sub rosa barter transaction.[209] The latter was cause for disbarment.[209]

The notaries (tabelliones) appeared in the late Roman Empire. Like their modern-day descendants, the civil law notaries, they were responsible for drafting wills, conveyances, and contracts.[210] They were ubiquitous and most villages had one.[210] In Roman times, notaries were widely considered to be inferior to advocates and jury consults.

Middle Ages[edit]

King James I overseeing a medieval court, from an illustrated manuscript of a legal code

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire and the onset of the Early Middle Ages, the legal profession of Western Europe collapsed. As James Brundage has explained: "[by 1140], no one in Western Europe could properly be described as a professional lawyer or a professional canonist in anything like the modern sense of the term 'professional.' "[211] However, from 1150 (when Decretum Gratiani was compiled) onward, a small but increasing number of men became experts in canon law but only in furtherance of other occupational goals, such as serving the Catholic Church as priests.[212] From 1190 to 1230, however, there was a crucial shift in which some men began to practice canon law as a lifelong profession in itself.[213]

The legal profession's return was marked by the renewed efforts of church and state to regulate it. In 1231, two French councils mandated that lawyers had to swear an oath of admission before practicing before the bishop's courts in their regions, and a similar oath was promulgated by the papal legate in London in 1237.[214] During the same decade, the emperor of the Holy Roman Empire Frederick II, the king of the Kingdom of Sicily, imposed a similar oath in his civil courts.[215] By 1250, the nucleus of a new legal profession had clearly formed.[216] The new trend towards professionalization culminated in a controversial proposal at the Second Council of Lyon in 1275 that all ecclesiastical courts should require an oath of admission.[217] Although not adopted by the council, it was highly influential in many such courts throughout Europe.[217] The civil courts in England also joined the trend towards professionalization; in 1275 a statute was enacted that prescribed punishment for professional lawyers guilty of deceit,[218] and in 1280 the mayor's court of the city of London promulgated regulations concerning admission procedures, including the administering of an oath.[219] And in 1345, the French crown promulgated a royal ordinance which set forth 24 rules governing advocates, of which 12 were integrated into the oath to be taken by them.[220]

The French medieval oaths were widely influential and of enduring importance; for example, they directly influenced the structure of the advocates' oath adopted by the Canton of Geneva in 1816.[221][222] In turn, the 1816 Geneva oath served as the inspiration for the attorney's oath drafted by David Dudley Field as Section 511 of the proposed New York Code of Civil Procedure of 1848, which was the first attempt in the United States at a comprehensive statement of a lawyer's professional duties.[221]


Example of a diploma from Suffolk University Law School conferring the Juris Doctor degree

Generally speaking, the modern practice is for lawyers to avoid use of any title, although formal practice varies across the world.

Historically, lawyers in most European countries were addressed with the title of doctor, and countries outside of Europe have generally followed the practice of the European country which had policy influence through colonization. The first university degrees, starting with the law school of the University of Bologna in the 11th century, were all law degrees and doctorates.[223] Degrees in other fields did not start until the 13th century, but the doctor continued to be the only degree offered at many of the old universities until the 20th century. Therefore, in many of the southern European countries, including Portugal, Italy and Malta, lawyers have traditionally been addressed as "doctor", a practice, which was transferred to many countries in South America and Macau. The term "doctor" has since fallen into disuse, although it is still a legal title in Italy and in use in many countries outside of Europe.[224][225]

In French (France, Quebec, Belgium, Luxembourg, French-speaking area of Switzerland) and Dutch-speaking countries (Netherlands, Belgium), legal professionals are addressed as Maître ..., abbreviated to Me ... (in French) or Meester ..., abbreviated to mr. ... (in Dutch).

The title of doctor has traditionally never been used to address lawyers in England or other common law countries. Until 1846, lawyers in England were not required to have a university degree and were trained by other lawyers by apprenticeship or in the Inns of Court.[226] Since law degrees started to become a requirement for lawyers in England, the most common degree awarded has been the undergraduate LL.B.

In South Africa, holders of a LL.B who have completed a year of pupillage and been admitted to the bar may use the title "Advocate", abbreviated to "Adv" in written correspondence. Holders of an LL.B who have completed two years of clerkship with a principal Attorney and passed all four board exams may be admitted as an "Attorney" and refer to themselves as such. Likewise, Italian law graduates who have qualified for the bar use the title "Avvocato", abbreviated in "Avv."

Even though most lawyers in the United States do not use any titles, the law degree in that country is the Juris Doctor, a professional doctorate degree.[227] Although it is uncommon, some J.D. holders in the United States use the title of "doctor".[228] It is common for lawyers in the United States to use the honorific suffix "Esq." (for "Esquire").

See also[edit]


  1. ^ She is wearing the ceremonial robes of a King's Counsel.


  1. ^ Henry Campbell Black, Black's Law Dictionary, 5th ed. (St. Paul: West Publishing Co., 1979), 799.
  2. ^ Geoffrey C. Hazard, Jr. & Angelo Dondi, Legal Ethics: A Comparative Study (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2004, ISBN 0-8047-4882-9), 20–23.
  3. ^ John Henry Merryman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, The Civil Law Tradition: An Introduction to the Legal Systems of Europe and Latin America, 3rd ed. (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2007),102–103.
  4. ^ Carl W. Battle, The Patent Guide: A Friendly Guide to Protecting and Profiting from Patents (New York: Allworth Press, 1997), 49.
  5. ^ David G. Cooper and Michael J. Gibson, Introduction to Paralegal Studies, 2nd ed.(Clifton Park: Thomson Delmar Learning, 1998), 4.
  6. ^ a b "Rule 5.5: Unauthorized Practice of Law; Multijurisdictional Practice of Law". American Bar Association. Archived from the original on 2015-06-02. Retrieved 2015-04-18.
  7. ^ "THE ADVOCATES ACT, 1961" (PDF). Bar Council of India. 1961. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 Aug 2008. Retrieved 1 May 2023.
  8. ^ Richard L. Abel, "Lawyers in the Civil Law World", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 1–53 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 4.
  9. ^ Merryman, 105–109.
  10. ^ Walter O. Weyrauch, The Personality of Lawyers (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1964), 27.
  11. ^ Jon T. Johnsen, "The Professionalization of Legal Counseling in Norway", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 54–123 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 91.
  12. ^ Kahei Rokumoto, "The Present State of Japanese Practicing Attorneys: On the Way to Full Professionalization?" in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 160–199 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 164.
  13. ^ Merryman, 105.
  14. ^ Hazard, 21–33.
  15. ^ Benoit Bastard and Laura Cardia-Vonèche, "The Lawyers of Geneva: an Analysis of Change in the Legal Profession", trans. by Richard L. Abel, in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 295–335 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 297.
  16. ^ Carlos Viladás Jene, "The Legal Profession in Spain: An Understudied but Booming Occupation", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 369–379 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 369.
  17. ^ Vittorio Olgiati and Valerio Pocar, "The Italian Legal Profession: An Institutional Dilemma", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 336–368 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 338.
  18. ^ Bastard, 299, and Hazard, 45.
  19. ^ Harry W. Arthurs, Richard Weisman, and Frederick H. Zemans, "Canadian Lawyers: A Peculiar Professionalism", in Lawyers in Society: The Common Law World, vol. 1, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 123–185 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 124.
  20. ^ David Weisbrot, "The Australian Legal Profession: From Provincial Family Firms to Multinationals", in Lawyers in Society: The Common Law World, vol. 1, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 244–317 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 250.
  21. ^ Georgina Murray, "New Zealand Lawyers: From Colonial GPs to the Servants of Capital", in Lawyers in Society: The Common Law World, vol. 1, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 318–368 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 324.
  22. ^ Anne Boigeol, "The Rise of Lawyers in France", in Legal Culture in the Age of Globalization: Latin America and Latin Europe, eds. Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, 185–219 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), 208.
  23. ^ "What is a Barrister?". Archived from the original on 2020-03-03. Retrieved 2020-04-06.
  24. ^ Hazard, 30–32.
  25. ^ Richard L. Abel, The Legal Profession in England and Wales (London: Basil Blackwell, 1989), 116.
  26. ^ See, e.g., Cal. Code. Civ. Proc. § 116.530 Archived 2009-08-09 at the Wayback Machine (preventing attorneys from appearing in small claims court except as parties or witnesses).
  27. ^ Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, "The Venezuelan Legal Profession: Lawyers in an Inegalitarian Society", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 380–399 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 387.
  28. ^ Gordon Kent, "Lawyerless Litigants: Is Justice Being Served?" Edmonton Journal, 27 January 2002, A1.
  29. ^ Alan Feuer, "Lawyering by Laymen: More Litigants Are Taking a Do-It-Yourself Tack", The New York Times, 22 January 2001, B1.
  30. ^ Fiona Boyle, Several Capps, Philip Plowden, Clare Sandford, A Practical Guide to Lawyering Skills, 3rd ed. (London: Cavendish Publishing, 2005), 47–50.
  31. ^ See Abel, England and Wales, 56 and 141.
  32. ^ Jene, 369.
  33. ^ a b Rokumoto, 164.
  34. ^ Anne Boigeol, "The French Bar: The Difficulties of Unifying a Divided Profession", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 258–294 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 263; and Boigeol, "The Rise of Lawyers", 206.
  35. ^ Richard L. Abel, American Lawyers (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989), 132. See, e.g., Hines v. Lowrey, 305 U.S. 85 (1938) (upholding limitation on attorneys' fees in veterans' benefits cases to $10); Walters v. National Ass'n of Radiation Survivors, 473 U.S. 305 (1985) (same).
  36. ^ Paul J. Zwier & Anthony J. Bocchini, Fact Investigation: A Practical Guide to Interviewing, Counseling, and Case Theory Development (Louisville, CO: National Institute for Trial Advocacy, 2000), 13–44.
  37. ^ John H. Freeman, Client Management for Solicitors (London: Cavendish Publishing Ltd., 1997), 266–274.
  38. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 1 and 141.
  39. ^ J. R. Spencer and Richard M. Jackson, Jackson's Machinery of Justice, 8th ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989), 336.
  40. ^ R.E. Megarry, Lawyer and Litigant in England (London: Stevens and Sons, 1962), 32.
  41. ^ Maureen Paton, "Cab-rank exits", The Times, 9 October 2001, 1. This brief article explains the uneasy tension between solicitors and barristers, and the loopholes that have developed. For example, a barrister need not accept a case if the fee is too low or the barrister is just too busy.
  42. ^ Arthurs, 125; Johnsen, 74; and Pérez-Perdomo, "Venezuelan Legal Profession", 387.
  43. ^ Erhard Blankenburg and Ulrike Schultz, "German Advocates: A Highly Regulated Profession", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 124–159 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 124.
  44. ^ Joaquim Falcão, "Lawyers in Brazil", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 400–442 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 401.
  45. ^ Justine Fischer and Dorothy H. Lackmann, Unauthorized Practice Handbook: A Compilation of Statutes, Cases, and Commentary on the Unauthorized Practice of Law (Buffalo: William S. Hein Company, 1990), 30–35.
  46. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 185; Bastard, 318.
  47. ^ Kees Schuyt, "The Rise of Lawyers in the Dutch Welfare State", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 200–224 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 201.
  48. ^ Stephen J. McGarry, Multidisciplinary Practices and Partnerships: Lawyers, Consultants, and Clients, § 1.06[1] (New York: Law Journal Press, 2002), 1–29.
  49. ^ Holland & Marie (26 November 2018). "HMLegal – Your Outsourced, In-House Counsel Solution". Holland & Marie. Archived from the original on 10 August 2019. Retrieved 10 August 2019.
  50. ^ Luc Huyse, "Legal Experts in Belgium", in Lawyers in Society: The Civil Law World, vol. 2, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 225–257 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 227.
  51. ^ Murray, 325; and Rokumoto, 164.
  52. ^ Lee Rousso, "Japan's New Patent Attorney Law Breaches Barrier Between The 'Legal' And 'Quasi-Legal' Professions: Integrity Of Japanese Patent Practice At Risk?" 10 Pac. Rim L. & Poly 781, 783–790 (2001).
  53. ^ Faber J. "Attorney Efficient | Lawyer Blog". Retrieved 2022-05-04.
  54. ^ Arthurs, 125; and Pérez-Perdomo, "Venezuelan Legal Profession", 387.
  55. ^ a b Huyse, 227.
  56. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 176; Hazard, 90–93; Murray, 325; and Pérez-Perdomo, "Venezuelan Legal Profession", 387.
  57. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 177.
  58. ^ Weisbrot, 292.
  59. ^ s. 14 Stamp Act 1804
  60. ^ Brian Abel-Smith and Robert Stevens, Lawyers and the Courts: A Sociological Study of the English Legal System, 1750–1965 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1967), 23.
  61. ^ Weisbrot, 251.
  62. ^ Arthurs, 125; Huyse, 227; and Schuyt, 201.
  63. ^ Simon Domberger and Avrom Sherr, "The Impact of Competition on Pricing and Quality of Legal Services", in The Regulatory Challenge, eds. Matthew Bishop, John Kay, Colin Mayer, 119–137 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995), 121–122.
  64. ^ Hazard, 34–35; Huyse, 227; Merryman, 105, and Schuyt, 201.
  65. ^ Larry J. Siegel and Joseph J. Senna, Introduction to Criminal Justice, 10th ed. (Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth, 2005), 311–325.
  66. ^ Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, "Latin Legal Cultures in the Age of Globalization", in Legal Culture in the Age of Globalization: Latin America and Latin Europe, eds. Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, 1–19 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), 6.
  67. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 45–59; Rokumoto, 165; and Schuyt, 204.
  68. ^ "Thinking About Law School?" (PDF). Law School Admission Council. 11 March 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 February 2017. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  69. ^ "ABA-Approved Law Schools". American Bar Association. Archived from the original on 2018-10-08. Retrieved 2015-04-18.
  70. ^ "The Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC)". Chambers Student. Archived from the original on 2012-03-23. Retrieved 2012-02-23.
  71. ^ Wayne L. Anderson and Marilyn J. Headrick, The Legal Profession: Is it for you? (Cincinnati: Thomson Executive Press, 1996), 52–53.
  72. ^ Anonymous, "Careers in the legal profession offer a variety of opportunities: While we may not think about it often, the legal system affects us every day", The Telegram, 14 April 2004, D8.
  73. ^ "ABA-Approved Law Schools". ABA. American Bar Association. Archived from the original on 22 November 2017. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  74. ^ Christen Civiletto Carey and Kristen David Adams, The Practice of Law School: Getting In and Making the Most of Your Legal Education (New York: ALM Publishing, 2003), 525.
  75. ^ Hazard, 127–129; Merryman, 103; and Olgiati, 345.
  76. ^ Pérez-Perdomo, "Venezuelan Legal Profession", 384.
  77. ^ Robert H. Miller, Law School Confidential: A Complete Guide to the Law School Experience, By Students, for Students (New York: St. Martin's Griffin, 2000), 25–27.
  78. ^ Anderson, 4–10.
  79. ^ Blankenburg, 132; Friedman and Pérez-Perdomo, 6; Hazard, 124–128; and Olgiati, 345.
  80. ^ Sergio Lopez-Ayllon and Hector Fix-Fierro, " 'Faraway, So Close!' The Rule of Law and Legal Change in Mexico: 1970–2000", in Legal Culture in the Age of Globalization: Latin America and Latin Europe, eds. Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, 285–351 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), 324.
  81. ^ Herbert Hausmaninger, "Austrian Legal Education", 43 S. Tex. L. Rev. 387, 388 and 400 (2002).
  82. ^ Miller, 42–60.
  83. ^ Abel, American Lawyers, 57; Miller, 25; and Murray, 337.
  84. ^ Falcão, 410.
  85. ^ J.S. Gandhi, "Past and Present: A Sociological Portrait of the Indian Legal Profession", in Lawyers in Society: The Common Law World, vol. 1, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 369–382 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 375.
  86. ^ a b Lopez-Ayllon, 324.
  87. ^ Eliane Botelho Junqueira, "Brazil: The Road of Conflict Bound for Total Justice", in Legal Culture in the Age of Globalization: Latin America and Latin Europe, eds. Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, 64–107 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), 89.
  88. ^ Junqueira, 89.
  89. ^ Rogelio Pérez-Perdomo, "Venezuela, 1958–1999: The Legal System in an Impaired Democracy", in Legal Culture in the Age of Globalization: Latin America and Latin Europe, eds. Lawrence M. Friedman and Rogelio Perez-Perdomo, 414–478 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), 459. For example, a 1997 study found that not a single law school in Venezuela had bothered to integrate any part of the Convention on Children's Rights into its curriculum, even though Venezuela had signed the treaty in 1990 and subsequently modified its domestic laws to bring them into compliance. Rather than embark on curriculum reform, Venezuelan law schools now offer special postgraduate courses so that recent graduates can bring their legal knowledge up-to-date with current law.
  90. ^ a b Abel, American Lawyers, 62.
  91. ^ a b Lopez-Ayllon, 330.
  92. ^ Hazard, 127, 129, & 133; Miller, 335–341.
  93. ^ Alan A. Paterson, "The Legal Profession in Scotland: An Endangered Species or a Problem Case for Market Theory?" in Lawyers in Society: The Common Law World, vol. 1, eds. Richard L. Abel and Philip S.C. Lewis, 76–122 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988), 89.
  94. ^ G. Jeffrey MacDonald, "The self-made lawyer: Not every attorney goes to law school", The Christian Science Monitor, 3 June 2003, 13.
  95. ^ Hazard, 129 & 133.
  96. ^ Weisbrot, 266.
  97. ^ Abel, American Lawyers, 167–175; Abel, England and Wales, 214; Arthurs, 131; Gandhi, 374; Merryman, 102, and Weisbrot, 277.
  98. ^ Anderson, 124–131.
  99. ^ Gandhi, 374.
  100. ^ In general, see, Legomsky, Stephen H. (1990) Specialized Justice: Courts, Administrative Tribunals, and a Cross-National Theory of Specialization Oxford University Press, New York, ISBN 978-0-19-825429-4
  101. ^ Merryman, 102–105.
  102. ^ Although it is common for former American judges to return to private practice, it is highly controversial for them to suggest that they still retain any judicial powers (for example, by wearing judicial robes in advertisements). Brad McElhinny, "Workman criticized for using robe in ad: Group files State Bar complaint about the way former justice seeks clients", Charleston Daily Mail, 3 February 2005, 1A.
  103. ^ Blankenburg, 133.
  104. ^ Boigeol, "The Rise of Lawyers", 202.
  105. ^ Bernard Michael Ortwein II, "The Swedish Legal System: An Introduction", 13 Ind. Int'l & Comp. L. Rev. 405, 440–445 (2003).
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  108. ^ Michael H. Trotter, Profit and the Practice of Law: What's Happened to the Legal Profession (Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1997), 50.
  109. ^ Herbert M. Kritzer, "The fracturing legal profession: the case of plaintiffs' personal injury lawyers", 8 Int'l J. Legal Prof. 225, 228–231 (2001).
  110. ^ Information for lawyers – Penalista para hurto Archived 2015-12-28 at the Wayback Machine
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  112. ^ Hazard, 39.
  113. ^ Junqueira, 92. According to this source, as of 2003, there were 901 law firms with more than 50 lawyers in the United States.
  114. ^ Gary Slapper and David Kelly, The English Legal System, 7th ed. (London: Cavendish Publishing Ltd., 2004), 550.
  115. ^ Sobowale, J., BECOMING AN IN-HOUSE LAWYER, Canadian Bar Association, published 1 January 2015, accessed 15 March 2023
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  117. ^ Weisbrot, 264.
  118. ^ a b Johnsen, 86.
  119. ^ Boigeol, "The French Bar", 271; Merryman, 106, and Junqueira, 89.
  120. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 127 and 243–249; Arthurs, 135; and Weisbrot, 279.
  121. ^ Bastard, 295; and Falcão, 401.
  122. ^ Blankenburg, 139.
  123. ^ Jene, 370.
  124. ^ Paterson, 79.
  125. ^ Arthurs, 143.
  126. ^ Murray, 339; Rokumoto, 163; and Schuyt, 207.
  127. ^ Abel, American Lawyers, 116.
  128. ^ Arthurs, 139.
  129. ^ Weisbrot, 244.
  130. ^ Bastard, 299.
  131. ^ Falcão, 404.
  132. ^ Olgiati, 343.
  133. ^ Huyse, 239.
  134. ^ Howard D. Fisher, The German Legal System and Legal Language, 3rd ed. (London: Routledge Cavendish, 2002), 208–209.
  135. ^ Andrews v Law Society of British Columbia [1989] 1 SCR 143.
  136. ^ Abel, American Lawyers, 68.
  137. ^ Mary C. Daly, "Ethical and Liability Issues in International Legal Practice", in Comparative Law Yearbook of International Business, vol. 17, eds. Dennis Campbell and Susan Cotter, 223–268 (London: Kluwer Law International, 1995), 233.
  138. ^ For a classic explanation of the self-regulating legal profession, see the Preamble Archived 2008-12-19 at the Wayback Machine to the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct, ¶¶ 10–13.
  139. ^ Abel, Civil Law World, 10; Johnsen, 70; Olgiati, 339; and Rokumoto, 161.
  140. ^ Falcão, 423.
  141. ^ Maria da Gloria Bonelli, "Lawyers' Associations and the Brazilian State, 1843–1997", 28 Law & Soc. Inquiry 1045, 1065 (2003).
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  146. ^ Arthurs, 138; and Weisbrot, 281.
  147. ^ Abel, American Lawyers, 246–247.
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  150. ^ William T. Gallagher, "Ideologies of Professionalism and the Politics of Self-Regulation in the California State Bar", 22 Pepp. L. Rev. 485, 490–491 (1995).
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  152. ^ Arthurs, 141.
  153. ^ Boigeol, "The French Bar", 274; and Olgiati, 344.
  154. ^ Blankenburg, 126; and Boigeol, "The French Bar", 272.
  155. ^ Abel, England and Wales, 37.
  156. ^ Gerald W. Gawalt, "Sources of Anti-Lawyer Sentiment in Massachusetts, 1740–1840", in Essays in Nineteenth-Century American Legal History, ed. Wythe Holt, 624–648 (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1976), 624–625. According to this source, the strong anti-lawyer sentiment of the period was rather ironic, since lawyers were actually so scarce in the American colonies that a 1715 Massachusetts law forbade litigants from retaining two lawyers because of the risk of depriving one's opponent of counsel.
  157. ^ Blankenburg, 127.
  158. ^ Weisbrot, 246.
  159. ^ Arthurs, 128.
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  161. ^ Stephen D. Easton, "Fewer Lawyers? Try Getting Your Day in Court", Wall Street Journal, 27 November 1984, 1. This article rebuts the common complaint of too many lawyers in the U.S. by pointing out that it is virtually impossible for a plaintiff to prevail in the vast majority of countries with less lawyers, like Japan, because there are simply not enough lawyers or judges to go around. Even wrongful death cases with clear evidence of fault can drag on for decades in Japan. Thus, any reduction in the number of lawyers would result in reduced enforcement of individual rights.
  162. ^ a b Gerry Spence, With Justice For None: Destroying An American Myth (New York: Times Books, 1989), 27–40
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  164. ^ Jerold Auerbach, Unequal Justice: Lawyers and Social Change in Modern America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1976), 301.
  165. ^ For examples of legal self-help books written by lawyers which concede that the profession has a bad image, see Mark H. McCormack, The Terrible Truth About Lawyers (New York: Beech Tree Books, 1987), 11; Kenneth Menendez, Taming the Lawyers (Santa Monica, CA, Merritt Publishing, 1996), 2; and Stuart Kahan and Robert M. Cavallo, Do I Really Need A Lawyer? (Radnor, PA: Chilton Book Company, 1979), 2.
  166. ^ Gayle White, "So, a lawyer, a skunk and a catfish walk into a bar...: No shortage of jokes", National Post, 27 May 2006, FW8.
  167. ^ Bryan Horrigan, "Myths, Fictions, and Realities" (chap. 2), in Adventures in Law and Justice: Exploring Big Legal Questions in Everyday Life, Law at Large, 55–82 (Sydney: University of New South Wales Press, 2003, ISBN 0-86840-572-8), 55 & 62–66. Bierce is quoted p. 64 Archived 2016-04-15 at the Wayback Machine.
  168. ^ Ambrose Bierce, "Lawyer" Archived 2015-09-23 at the Wayback Machine, in The Devil's Dictionary (1911), electronic entry at Also found quoted in many legal books.
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  170. ^ Hazard, 60.
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