Knowing what area you want to practice

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Tall
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Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby Tall » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:32 pm

Is it important to know what type of law you want to practice before you enter law school? Also, can a person with a JD practice in any area of the law or are there certain limits to what you can practice.

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pany1985
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby pany1985 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:40 pm

It's not important. Your classes will be the same as everyone else's during your first year, and then you'll have another two years to figure out what you like (and whether you have any chance of getting a job doing it).

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Tall
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby Tall » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:44 pm

Thanks for the answer. How about the second part? If you choose one area, say for example Criminal Law, and after you get out of law school a few years later decide you want to do Health Law or something... At that point are you SOL or is a law degree a law degree no matter what area?

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merichard87
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby merichard87 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:46 pm

No you don't need to know what kind of law you want to practice when entering law school. And you can practice any kind of law with a JD other than IP which requires some technical education in certain areas. Also, even though you can practice in any area I think it would be difficult to work in lets say criminal for 10 years then decide you want to move into M&A or some type of dramatic move like that.

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Cara
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby Cara » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:47 pm

You don't need to know, even if you think you do know you don't really and in any event you will have a much better idea after a couple of years of LS.

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pany1985
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby pany1985 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:48 pm

Well, it's not the law degree that matters, it's passing the bar. But once you do that, you can practice pretty much any type of law you want (as long as you do it competently).

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Tall
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby Tall » Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:51 pm

Thank you for the responses! It was very helpful.

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mleibman
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby mleibman » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:30 pm

I think you should have an idea of what law you want to practice prior to attending. Otherwise, why law? Why law school? For instance, I hope to join my cousins in the practice of entertainment law, as it pertains to copyright, and contract. This knowledge of what law I want to practice enables me to choose the right school, and the right path to the right school. Going to law school for the sake of going to law school is not a wise choice, not that I am implying that is the case with you. Surely you have given some thought of why law school, and what kind of law?

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Tall
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby Tall » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:50 pm

mleibman wrote:I think you should have an idea of what law you want to practice prior to attending. Otherwise, why law? Why law school? For instance, I hope to join my cousins in the practice of entertainment law, as it pertains to copyright, and contract. This knowledge of what law I want to practice enables me to choose the right school, and the right path to the right school. Going to law school for the sake of going to law school is not a wise choice, not that I am implying that is the case with you. Surely you have given some thought of why law school, and what kind of law?

Yeah, I see your point. I have thought about it. The premise for my question is if it was required or recommended. Of course I know some areas that I absolutely do not want to practice but I haven't had much exposure to a lot of different types of law yet, as I'm sure is the case with many, if not most entering law students. Thinking about it, yes. Deciding definitively, for some maybe, for me I don't think so. Thanks.

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pany1985
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby pany1985 » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:56 pm

Some people definitely come into law school hellbent on becoming a prosecutor or plaintiff's attorney or international human rights litigator or some other really specific thing... but I'd say probably not most.

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mleibman
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Re: Knowing what area you want to practice

Postby mleibman » Sun Apr 25, 2010 12:54 pm

Naturally, most pre-law students and 1L students do not have an idea of what law they want to practice. I know quite a few people in law school right now (1L and 2L students) and they have no clue what they want to do. However, like you, they have some areas they know they don't want to practice, and they know some areas they do want to practice. In any event, so long as law school seems to be the right choice for you, it doesn't matter (which seems to answer your question). Knowing what type of law you want to practice only helps, not hurts your process in applying to law school.




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