Legal Careers Overview
Those interested in working in the legal field have a variety of career options to consider. There are legal analysts, legal assistants and secretaries, paralegals, legal mediators, legal managers, legal editors and more. Upper-level positions include working as the legal counsel for a company or as a lawyer in a firm that provides legal services to individuals and smaller companies as needed. Those who work in the legal field should have good communication skills, the ability to maintain confidentiality for sensitive cases, and a special interest in protecting the rights of citizens while upholding national and local laws.
Legal Career Education
The educational requirements for a career in law will depend on the specific position. Upper level legal jobs, such as lawyers and legal counsel, require a postgraduate degree in legal studies and passing an exam. Working as a paralegal or legal secretary will require less education, although some jobs do require a university degree. Depending on the area of law in which the candidate specializes, he or she may also need experience in cases in that specific field. For example, someone focusing on labor and employment law might need to gain experience by taking on cases relating to this legal area.
Legal Career Job Market
The job market projection for lawyers shows average growth over the next decade. The number of legal jobs available depends heavily on the current economy, so when the economy dips, legal firms often struggle. Paralegal and legal secretary positions should grow faster over the next 10 years, which is promising for those who want to work in law but don't want to become lawyers. The main reason for this projected growth is that these positions have lower salaries than lawyers, so firms can afford to hire more to complete the work.
Legal Career Salaries
The salary range for legal careers is wide, depending on the experience and education level of the employee. Legal assistants earn a median salary of C$42,274, while paralegals earn an average salary of C$49,585 per year. Paralegals typically have more education and experience in legal matters, which explains the higher salary. A law clerk might earn a salary that is close to C$45,472. The median salary for a lawyer is C$71,828, and those who practice in court tend to earn more than those whose cases rarely go to court. Experience also factors into the salary of a lawyer.