Picking a career is a challenging task. If you’re considering a legal career, do your research thoroughly. A career in law is one of honor, and it’s admired by many for many reasons. Before enrolling in a legal career, ask yourself tough questions like, Do I have what it takes to pursue a legal career? Can I afford a legal career? Will I be a good fit?
There is so much to consider when making a life-changing decision, like picking a career path in the legal field. Here are three things you need to know.
1. Law Schools Are Notoriously Selective
Getting into a law school isn’t just prestigious; it’s also difficult. Law schools are very selective when picking students. You shouldn’t have anything that’ll make the selection process more difficult than it already is.
If you have a violation that raises concerns about your character, that’ll be a considerable disadvantage. For instance, according to LegalMatch, more than 1.4 million people are detained for a DUI every year. Having a DUI conviction may tarnish your career prospects during the admission process, as the admissions team may question your character or turn down your application.
A conviction won’t eliminate your chances of pursuing a legal career or being accepted to the school of your dreams, but it’ll surely make the process more difficult.
2. You Will Be a Law Enforcer
You have probably used the line “rules are meant to be broken” after doing something dangerous or something you might regret later. By choosing a legal career, you’re saying you’ll fight for rules and justice and protect communities that create these rules and laws.
You represent the lawmakers, so you must act responsibly and maturely. This isn’t to suggest a legal career will suck all the fun out of your life. You’ll have to be more responsible with how you do things.
But as you have fun, respect the limits, such as the one limiting the amount of alcohol you can safely consume. Forbes reiterates that 08% is the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) for drivers. Anything higher than this is cause for worry as it could jeopardize your chances of joining law school. If you plan to advocate for the law, breaking the rules you’re supposed to protect may bring problems with the bar’s model rule of professional conduct.
3. It’s a Demanding Career
Upon signing up for a legal career, you choose a highly demanding one. A legal career takes lots of long hours, most of which you’ll spend reading in college and during practice. You’ll also be dealing with highly demanding clients.
There’s a chance your work will become your life, and you might even experience career burnout. A 2021 survey by Bloomberg Law showed that 51% of lawyers experience burnout in the first quarter of the year. Consider this when picking a legal career and anticipate ways to reduce or avoid burnout. The good news is that a career in law pays very well, which means you can afford a vacation once or twice a year to mitigate burnout.
Working with police and law enforcement will make your work in the legal field less hectic. Police not only interact with the public but have body cameras that record their interaction with the public. One-third of the 18,000 police departments in the U.S. were using body cameras as of March 2015, according to the Washington Examiner. These cameras help them collect evidence at crime scenes and help lawyers and the prosecution prove a defendant committed a crime.
A legal career is both rewarding and challenging. As advocates, lawyers set up new precedents, and they get to impact people’s lives. There’s a lot to consider in a legal career. Among the decisions you’ll need to make is what kind of law you want to practice. Where will you go to school, and what kind of jobs should you keep an eye out for? There are many types of lawyers; the best action is to research before sending applications.