Lawyer

Description

Lawyers provide legal advice to clients and act on their behalf in legal proceedings and in compliance with the law. They research for, interpret and study cases to represent their clients in a variety of settings such as courts and administrative boards. They create arguments on behalf of their clients for lawsuits in different contexts with the aim of finding a legal remedy.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to lawyer:

procurement law lawyer
property law lawyer
copyright and media lawyer
commercial and company lawyer
attorney
personal law lawyer
inheritance law lawyer
agricultural lawyer
building lawyer
employment lawyer
advocate
prosecutor assistant
international business law lawyer
counsellor
patent law lawyer
labour lawyer
administrative law lawyer
social law lawyer
industrial property lawyer
property law attorney
fiscal lawyer
medical lawyer
bank and capital market lawyer
information technology lawyer
building and construction dispute lawyer
intellectual property lawyer
barrister
family law lawyer
traffic law lawyer
financial lawyer
insurance lawyers

Minimum qualifications

Doctoral or equivalent level is generally required to work as lawyer. However, this requirement may differ in some countries.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Lawyer is a Skill level 4 occupation.

Lawyer career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to lawyer.

corporate lawyer
prosecutor
legal consultant
mediator
court jury coordinator

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of lawyer. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of lawyer with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of lawyer.

Legal case management: The procedures of a legal case from opening to closing, such as the documentation that needs to be prepared and handled, the people involved in different stages of the case, and the requirements that need to be met before the case can be closed.
Court procedures: The regulations which are in place during the investigation of a court case and during a court hearing, and of how these events occur.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of lawyer.

Compile legal documents: Compile and collect legal documents from a specific case in order to aid an investigation or for a court hearing, in a manner compliant with legal regulations and ensuring records are properly maintained.
Negotiate in legal cases: Negotiate on the client’s behalf during the treatment of a legal case in order to obtain the most beneficial outcome for the client, and to ensure that all decisions are compliant with legal regulations.
Protect client interests: Protect the interests and needs of a client by taking necessary actions, and researching all possibilities, to ensure that the client obtains their favoured outcome.
Analyse legal evidence: Analyse evidence, such as evidence in criminal cases, legal documentation regarding a case, or other documentation that can be regarded as evidence, in order to obtain a clear image of the case and reach resolutions.
Present arguments persuasively: Present arguments during a negotiation or debate, or in written form, in a persuasive manner in order to obtain the most support for the case the speaker or writer represents.
Present legal arguments: Present legal arguments during a court hearing or during negotiations, or in written form after a trial concerning its outcome and sentence, in order to ensure the best possible outcomes for the client or to ensure the decision is followed. Present these arguments in a manner that is compliant with regulations and guidelines and adapted to the specifications of the case.
Interpret law: Interpret the law during the investigation of a case in order to know the correct procedures in handling the case, the specific status of the case and the parties involved, the possible outcomes, and how to present the best arguments for the most favourable outcome.
Represent clients in courts: Assume the position of representation in behalf of clients in courtrooms. Present arguments and evidence in favour of the client in order to win the case.
Respond to enquiries: Respond to enquiries and requests for information from other organisations and members of the public.
Observe confidentiality: Observe the set of rules establishing the nondisclosure of information except to another authorised person.
Negotiate lawyer’s fee: Negotiate compensation for legal services in or out of court, such as hourly or flat-rate fees, with clients.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of lawyer. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Criminology: The study of criminal behaviour, such as its causes and nature, its consequences, and control and prevention methods.
Mergers and acquisitions: The process of joining together separate companies and relatively equal in size, and the purchase of a smaller company by a bigger one. The financial deals, the legal implications, and the consolidation of financial records and statements at the end of the fiscal year.
Pharmaceutical legislation: European and national legal framework for the development, distribution, and use of medicinal products for humans.
International trade: The economic practise and study field that address the exchange of goods and services across geographic borders. The general theories and schools of thought around the implications of international trade in terms of exports, imports, competitivity, GDP, and role of multinational companies.
Health care legislation: The patients` rights and responsibilities of health practitioners and the possible repercussions and prosecutions in relation to medical treatment negligence or malpractice.
Railway law: The laws and regulations governing the activities and functioning of the railway system.
 
Government representation: The legal and public representation methods and procedures of the government during trial cases or for communication purposes, and the specific aspects of the governmental bodies being represented in order to ensure accurate representation.
Media law: Set of laws related to the entertainment and telecommunications industry and regulatory activities within the fields of broadcasting, advertising, censorship, and online services.
Urban planning law: Investments and urban development agreements. Legislative developments regarding construction in terms of environmental, sustainability, social and financial matters.
Intellectual property law: The regulations that govern the set of rights protecting products of the intellect from unlawful infringement.
Business law: The field of law concerned with the trade and commerce activities of businesses and private persons and their legal interactions. This relates to numerous legal disciplines, including tax and employment law.
Family law: The legal rules that govern family-related disputes between individuals such as marriages, child adoption, civil unions, etc.
Law enforcement: The different organisations involved in law enforcement, as well as the laws and regulations in law enforcement procedures.
Road traffic laws: Understand road traffic laws and the rules of the road.
Financial statements: The set of financial records disclosing the financial position of a company at the end of a set period or of the accounting year. The financial statements consisting of five parts which are the statement of financial position, the statement of comprehensive income, the statement of changes in equity (SOCE), the statement of cash flows and notes.
Road transport legislation: Know road transport regulations at regional, national, and European level in matters of safety and environmental requirements.
Education law: The area of law and legislation that concerns education policies and the people working in the sector in an (inter)national context, such as teachers, students, and administrators.
Contract law: The field of legal principles that govern written agreements between parties concerning the exchange of goods or services, including contractual obligations and termination.
Legislation in agriculture: Body of regional, national and European laws enacted in the field of agriculture and forestry concerning various issues such as product quality, environmental protection and trade.
Customs law: The legal regulations that govern the import of goods in a country.
Anti-dumping law: The policies and regulations that govern the activity of charging a lower price for goods in a foreign market than one charges for the same goods in a domestic market.
Environmental legislation: The environmental policies and legislation applicable in a certain domain.
Food legislation: Legislation related to the food and feed industry including food manufacturing, hygiene, safety, raw materials, additives, GMOs, labelling, environmental and trade regulations.
Securities: The financial instruments traded in financial markets representing both the right of property over the owner and at the same time, the obligation of payment over the issuer. The aim of securities which is raising capital and hedging risk in financial markets.
Ict security legislation: The set of legislative rules that safeguards information technology, ICT networks and computer systems and legal consequences which result from their misuse. Regulated measures include firewalls, intrusion detection, anti-virus software and encryption.
Subsidiary operations: The coordination, processes, and operations revolving around the management of subsidiaries either nationally or internationally. The integration of strategic guidelines coming from the headquarters, consolidation of financial reporting, and abidance by the regulatory mandates of the jurisdiction where the subsidiary operates.
Joint ventures: The legal agreement between companies which get together to create a temporary legal entity where they can share knowledge, technology, and other assets aiming at developing new products or services appealing to the market. Also, to share the expenses and revenues of the venture.
Criminal law: Th legal rules, constitutions and regulations applicable for the punishement of offenders.
Architecture regulations: The regulations, statutes, and legal agreements existing in the European Union in the field of architecture. 
Insolvency law: The legal rules regulating the incapacity to pay debts when they fall due.
Consumer law: The area of law that regulates the relationship between consumer and businesses providing goods or services, including consumer protection and regulations on irregular business practices.
Employment law: The law which mediates the relationship between employees and employers. It concerns employees’ rights at work which are binding by the work contract.
International law: The binding rules and regulations in the relations between states and nations, and legal systems dealing with countries rather than private citizens.
Legal research: The methods and procedures of research in legal matters, such as the regulations, and different approaches to analyses and source gathering, and the knowledge on how to adapt the research methodology to a specific case to obtain the required information.
Rhetoric: The art of discourse that aims at improving the ability of writers and speakers to inform, persuade or motivate their audience.
Investigation research methods: The methods and strategies used to conduct police, government intelligence or military investigation research, as well as the research regulations specific to the operation.
Air transport law: Know air transport laws and regulations. Due to the nature of aviation, knowledge of air transport laws partially overlaps with knowledge of international law.
Property law: The law and legislation that regulates all the different ways to handle property, such as the types of property, how to handle property disputes and property contract rules.
Social security law: Legislation concerning the protection of individuals and the provision of aid and benefits, such as health insurance benefits, unemployment benefits, welfare programs and other government-provided social security.
Civil law: The legal rules and their applications used in disputes between different parties.

Legal department processes: The different processes, duties, jargon, role in an organisation, and other specificities of the legal department within an organisation such as patents, legal cases, and legal compliance.
Public auction procedures: The regulations involved in the repossession and consequent selling of goods in public auctions in order to obtain the amount owed by an individual as ruled by a court of law.
Legal terminology: The special terms and phrases used in the field of law.
Constitutional law: The regulations dealing with the fundamental principles or established precedents which govern a state or organisation.
Competition law: The legal regulations that maintain market competition by regulating anti-competitive behaviour of companies and organisations.
Commercial law: The legal regulations that govern a specific commercial activity.
Tax legislation: Tax legislation applicable to a specific area of specialisation, such as import tax, government tax, etc.
Corporate law: The legal rules that govern how corporate stakeholders (such as shareholders, employees, directors, consumers, etc) interact with one another, and the responsibilities corporations have to their stakeholders.
Copyright legislation: Legislation describing the protection of the rights of original authors over their work, and how others can use it.
Civil process order: The legal procedures and standards that courts follow in civil lawsuits.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of lawyer. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

Trace financial transactions: Observe, track and analyse financial transactions made in companies or in banks. Determine the validity of the transaction and check for suspicious or high-risk transactions in order to avoid mismanagement.
Provide legal advice on investments: Study corporate investments and their legal repercussions in order to advise organisations on the legal procedures, the drafting of the contracts, and tax efficiency operations.
Apply conflict management: Take ownership of the handling of all complaints and disputes showing empathy and understanding to achieve resolution. To be fully aware of all Social Responsibility protocols and procedures, and to be able to deal with a problem gambling situation in a professional manner with maturity and empathy.
Make legal decisions: Make decisions in legal cases in order to reach an official conclusion which has to be enforced, creating a decision which is legally binding for the parties involved in the case.
Show responsibility: Accept responsibility and be accountable for professional decisions of yourself or others as part of a job or one’s role.
Handle evidence: Handle evidence important for a case in a manner compliant with regulations, in order to not affect the state of the evidence in question and to ensure its pristine condition and usability in the case.
Present evidence: Present evidence in a criminal or civil case to others, in a convincing and appropriate manner, in order to reach the right or most beneficial solution.
Comply with legal regulations: Ensure you are properly informed of the legal regulations that govern a specific activity and adhere to its rules, policies and laws.
Use consulting techniques: Advise clients in different personal or professional matters.
Think analytically: Produce thoughts using logic and reasoning in order to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Manage legal personal issues: Represent clients in personal issues of a legal nature such as trading properties, housing agreements, wills and probate, divorce and alimony requests and personal injury claims.
Moderate in negotiations: Oversee negotiations between two parties as a neutral witness to ensure that the negotiations occur in a friendly and productive manner, that a compromise is reached, and that everything is compliant with legal regulations.
Interpret financial statements: Read, understand, and interpret the key lines and indicators in financial statements. Extract the most important information from financial statements depending on the needs and integrate this information in the development of the department’s plans.
Show confidence: Demonstrate degrees of maturity by fully understanding one’s own qualities and abilities which can serve as sources of confidence in different situations.
Show empathy: Show empathy in order to prevent any kind of symbolic violence and isolation and to guarantee a considerate attention to everyone. It should include a capacity to understand various verbal and non-verbal communication of sentiment and feeling.
Document evidence: Document all evidence found on a crime scene, during an investigation, or when presented in a hearing, in a manner compliant with regulations, to ensure that no piece of evidence is left out of the case and that records are maintained.
Conduct research interview: Use professional researching and interviewing methods and techniques to gather relevant data, facts or information, to gain new insights and to fully comprehend the message of the interviewee.
Analyse internal factors of companies: Research and understand various internal factors that influence the operation of companies such as its culture, strategic foundation, products, prices, and available resources.
Manage contracts: Negotiate the terms, conditions, costs and other specifications of a contract while making sure they comply with legal requirements and are legally enforceable. Oversee the execution of the contract, agree on and document any changes.
Consult with business clients: Communicate with clients of a business or business project in order to introduce new ideas, obtain feedback, and find solutions to problems.
Advise on legal decisions: Advise judges, or other officials in legal decision-making positions, on which decision would be right, compliant with the law and with moral considerations, or most advantageous for the adviser’s client, in a specific case.
Apply knowledge of human behaviour: Practice principles related to group behaviour, trends in society, and influence of societal dynamics.
Hear witness accounts: Hear witness accounts during a court hearing or during an investigation to assess the significance of the account, its impact on the case under scrutiny or investigation, and to aid in reaching a conclusion.
Develop professional network: Reach out to and meet up with people in a professional context. Find common ground and use your contacts for mutual benefit. Keep track of the people in your personal professional network and stay up to date on their activities.
Meet with clients for legal services: Meet, interview, and advice clients to know their needs in terms of legal matters and to establish the cooperation based on the specialisation of the professional or legal firm.
Apply technical communication skills: Explain technical details to non-technical customers, stakeholders, or any other interested parties in a clear and concise manner.
Apply organisational techniques: Employ a set of organisational techniques and procedures which facilitate the achievement of the goals set. Use these resources efficiently and sustainably, and show flexibility when required.
Maintain operational communications: Maintain communications between different departments of an organisation, between the staff, or during specific operations or missions, to ensure that the operation or mission is successful, or that the organisation functions smoothly.
Assess financial viability: Revise and analyse financial information and requirements of projects such as their budget appraisal, expected turnover, and risk assessment for determining the benefits and costs of the project. Assess if the agreement or project will redeem its investment, and whether the potential profit is worth the financial risk.
Provide legal advice: Provide advice to clients in order to ensure that their actions are compliant with the law, as well as most beneficial for their situation and specific case, such as providing information, documentation, or advice on the course of action for a client should they want to take legal action or legal action is taken against them.
Analyse enforceability: Examine the client’s present situation, ideas and wishes under a legal perspective to assess their legal justification or enforceability.
Advise on legal compliance for participation in financial markets: Consult and provide guidance on the legal changes the company has to undergo in order to participate in the financial market such as writing dividend policies, defining the ownership and structure of the company, and the compliance with the standards set by organisms regulating the market the company is entering to.
Ensure law application: Ensure the laws are followed, and where they are broken, that the correct measures are taken to ensure compliance to the law and law enforcement.
Identify clients’ needs: Identify the areas in which the client may require aid and investigate the possibilities for meeting those needs.
Detect financial crime: Examine, investigate, and notice possible financial crimes such as money laundering or tax evasion observable in financial reports and accounts of companies.
Manage contract disputes: Monitor issues that arise between the parties involved in a contract and provide solutions in order to avoid lawsuits.

ISCO group and title

2611 – Lawyers

 

 


 

 

References
  1. Lawyer – ESCO
Last updated on August 8, 2022

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