Mapping Your Legal Career: The Law Areas You Can Consider

Working in law is a privilege. In addition to contributing to society by assisting in the pursuit of a more efficient and balanced justice system, solicitors also benefit from working in a challenging and constantly changing field.

The potential financial rewards, of course, cannot be ignored. However, one of the challenges faced by those who want to become lawyers is deciding which of the many areas of law to specialise in. Find out now which are the best areas available in the sector and how to make the right choice based on your profile and goals.

Why Would You Want to Become a Solicitor?

The main reason that law students pursue a career as a solicitor is the satisfaction of being able to help people. Ensuring that citizens have their rights guaranteed is priceless.

Additionally, it is a career that provides stability and security. Legal services are consistently required across various sectors, including corporate, criminal, family, and property law. This constant need ensures that solicitors remain in demand. Moreover, the legal profession offers clear pathways for career advancement, from trainee lawyer to associate, and potentially to partner in a firm. This structured progression enhances job security.

Another reason that attracts many young people to this industry is the financial gain. A trainee can expect annual earnings starting from £20,000. This amount rises to £27,000 for newly qualified solicitors. Experienced lawyers with 2-4 years of Post Qualification Experience (PQE) can earn up to £120,000 annually, whereas senior solicitors with over five years of practice can expect to make £200,000+ per year. For equity partners in large firms, the sky is the limit. Salaries and bonuses can add up to £1,000,000 yearly.

As if that weren’t enough, solicitors also enjoy high prestige in society. Having a degree in law guarantees status and social recognition. Last but not least, it is a very flexible career. Attorneys can specialise in numerous fields, such as corporate law, criminal defence, wills, trusts, and probate law. To learn more about the various specialisations and how to choose the right path for your legal career, continue reading.

The Areas of Law You Can Consider

With so many options available, it’s normal to feel uncertain about what specialisation to pursue. Here is a short guide to help you decide.

  • Corporate law

Corporate law focuses on legal aspects concerning businesses and corporations, including handling mergers and acquisitions, corporate restructuring, compliance with corporate regulations, and governance. Corporate lawyers often work on drafting and reviewing contracts, advising on rights and responsibilities, and navigating regulatory requirements.

  • Criminal law

Criminal law involves prosecuting or defending individuals accused of committing crimes. In the criminal justice field, solicitors work on cases ranging from minor infractions to severe offences, providing representation in court and advising on legal rights. The work is fast-paced and often involves court appearances and negotiations. The outcome of cases can significantly affect clients’ lives, making it impactful.

  • Wills, trusts, and probate law

Wills, trusts, and probate law refers to the administration and distribution of an individual’s estate after their death. This area includes drafting wills, creating trusts, and managing the probate process. Probate solicitors assist clients in ensuring their assets are distributed according to their wishes and provide guidance on reducing tax liabilities.

  • Personal injury law

As the name implies, this involves seeking compensation for the injured party through negotiation or litigation. Personal injury solicitors handle cases involving road traffic accidents, workplace injuries, medical negligence, slips and falls, and other incidents leading to physical or psychological harm. Key areas include road traffic accidents, workplace injuries, medical negligence, public liability, and product liability. Many solicitors in this field work on a “no win, no fee” basis, making legal representation accessible to a broader range of clients. Claims can result in significant compensation, covering medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

  • Sports law

This field includes areas such as contract negotiation, intellectual property, disciplinary issues, governance, anti-doping regulations, and sponsorship deals. Sports solicitors provide legal advice to athletes, clubs, governing bodies, and other stakeholders involved in the sports industry. Sports law often intersects with different areas of law, such as employment, intellectual property, and commercial law, offering a broad scope of expertise.

  • Property law

Property law deals with issues related to real estate, including transactions, zoning, landlord-tenant disputes, and property development. Solicitors assist with buying, selling, and leasing property, and ensure compliance with local regulations. They play a crucial role in the economy, influencing housing markets and commercial development.

  • Environmental law

Environmental law is a complex and dynamic field focused on the protection of the environment and the regulation of human activities that impact natural resources. This area includes legislation, regulations, treaties, and common law that address issues such as pollution control, natural resource management, land use, and climate change. Environmental solicitors work with governments, non-profits, businesses, and individuals to ensure compliance and to advocate for more robust environmental protection.

These fields can be quite different from one another, but they share one thing in common: to succeed in this domain, you will have to work hard. Competition is fierce, and the challenges are abundant. However, with dedication and empathy, the potential for growth is enormous.