Law: Career And Opportunities

“Law” is simply defined as the rules which are set by groups, organizations or governments bodies to be followed by all the citizens of that country. According to Cambridge Dictionary it is – “the system of rules of a particular country or group.”

In Pearson’s Letters to a Law Student, the motive and importance of studying law are highlighted in the four different functions of law, namely “Defending us from evil”, “Promoting the common good”, “Resolving disputes over limited resources” and “Encouraging people to do the right thing”.

Before you begin with your search for a law school at an international destination you must ask yourself – Why do I want to study law abroad? Many students opt for this option because of handsome pay, which isn’t wrong but there are other, more convincing reasons for pursuing a career in law such as a broad spectrum of options in both corporate and criminal law, amazing growth prospects and a reputed status.Most popular destinations to study law across the globe are:

  • UK
  • USA
  • Europe
  • Australia

The next thing you need to decide is which of the above stated destinations would be the perfect one for you. Ask yourself the following questions to make this important decision:

  • How far away from home would you prefer to go?
  • What are the living expenses of the country you want to study in? What are the job prospects after the completion of your program?
  • Are you comfortable with the country’s culture and history?

Parameters for judging the right Law School for you:

Once the destination is finalized, the next big step is to find the right law school according to your profile. This is very critical decision. Consider the following parameters:

  •  Global Ranking of the Law School
  • Location of the school- Is situated in middle of a major city or in a quieter campus based University?
  • Tuition fees and other associated expenses.
  •  Various specializations the University offers in its programs.
  • Various facilities such as the law library and other resources offered by the university.
  • Entry requirements for admission

Choosing a Law Degree

In UK and other popular destinations for law aspirants, the primary law degree is known as LLB or Bachelor of Law. This is an undergraduate degree that has a typical span of three or four years. In USA, the primary degree is called a Juris Doctor (JD).

Postgraduate law degrees are more diverse than the bachelors and include taught degrees, research and professional qualifications. The most common postgraduate law degree is the LLM or Master of Law and can be studied full time for a year or part-time over two years. To pursue a career in law, you will be required to complete one of these postgraduate qualifications after your Bachelors in Law. Many top rated colleges and institutes offer a wide range of law degrees so that you can start studying at bachelor level and continue at the same college until you are a fully qualified barrister or solicitor.

In case, your law degree is not recognized in your resident country then you may need to gain an additional degree or appear for an exam as per the country’s guidelines to practice as a lawyer.

Requirements for a Law Program

Entrance into a law degree program varies from college to college and is determined by the guidelines of the country wherein the degree program will be taken. A few destinations have universities offering Bachelor of Law (LLB) as an undergraduate degree. In this case, graduates of this program undergo further training and education before they start practicing. However, in some countries, LLB is taken as a second degree that grants the eligibility to graduates of the program to appear for a bar exam. Countries that offer this option are Pakistan, Malaysia, United Kingdom and India.

Another law degree program is the Juris Doctor (JD), which is a postgraduate degree. This program enables the student to practice law in a certain number of countries including The United States of America. Requirements for admission into this type of program include a Law School Admission Test (LSAT) score and a high undergraduate GPA. Extracurricular activities, involvement in the community and leadership experience may also boost your profile. Other requirements include an application essay and an admission interview.

Each university offers a variety of Law specializations and as per the individual’s interest and profile one can decide which specialization to opt for. Most popular specializations offered by top schools are:

  • Intellectual property law
  • Environmental law
  • Health law
  • Tax law
  • Civil rights
  • Corporate law
  • Capital markets/securities law
  • Project finance
  • M&A/Private Equity
  • Real Estate Finance
  • International Arbitration
  • FCPA, Anti-Money Laundering, Internal Investigations, OFAC, Antitrust, and Compliance
  • Human Rights

Applications & Pre-requisites:

Application process for each law college differs from college to college and from country to country. Each college has their own set parameters you need to match before applying. A common pre-requisite for most of them is an IELTS score; the score range varies for each institution.

For example, in UK, applications are processed through UCAS. Many universities demand for a LNAT score in addition to the IELTS. For Australia & Singapore, only IELTS is required, however some institution may ask the applicants to appear for the institution’s own assessment exam. For USA, LNAT along with IELTS/TOEFL is mandatory. Other than UK none of the countries have a common application system like UCAS.

Few of the Top Law Schools around the globe are:

 

UK

Australia Singapore US

Cambridge

Latrobe University National University of Singapore

Harvard

Oxford

The University of Sydney Singapore Management University

Yale

University College London

Charles Darwin University SIM University

Columbia

London School of Economics

Australian National University

Princeton

King’s College London

Western Sydney University

New York University

Glasgow University

University of New South Wales

Georgetown University

Queen’s University Belfast

Curtin University

Stanford University

University of East Anglia

University of South Australia

University of Pennsylvania

University of Manchester

Deakin University

Cornell University

Robert Gordon University Aberdeen

University of Technology Sydney – UTS

Northwestern University

Queen Mary, University of London

Australian Catholic University

University of Sussex

University of Southern Queensland (USQ)

University of Leicester

University of Sheffield

 

In the nutshell, pursuing a career in Law not only opens the doors towards achieving success and power, but also enables you to serve the society as a whole. Both the International Universities and reputed law firms contribute to offer a promising future in this field. The final decision rests on you as per your interests and goals.

 

Chinu Vasudeva,

Head-Academics,

chinu@leverageedu.com

www.leverageedu.com

Making Higher Education Intelligent & Awesome!

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