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Lawyers
A lawyer is a person who practices law. The role of a lawyer varies greatly across different legal jurisdictions. A lawyer can be classified as an advocate, attorney, barrister, canon lawyer, civil law notary, counsel, counselor, solicitor, legal executive, or public servant — with each role having different functions and privileges. Working as a lawyer generally involves the practical application of abstract legal theories and knowledge to solve specific problems. Some lawyers also work primarily in advancing the interests of the law and legal profession. Terminology Different legal jurisdictions have different requirements in the determination of who is recognized as being a lawyer. As a result, the meaning of the term "lawyer" may vary from place to place. Some jurisdictions have two types of lawyers, barrister and solicitors, while others fuse the two. A barrister (also known as an advocate or counselor in some jurisdictions) is a lawyer who typically specializes in a ...
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Lawyer
A lawyer is a person who practices law. The role of a lawyer varies greatly across different legal jurisdictions. A lawyer can be classified as an advocate, attorney, barrister, canon lawyer, civil law notary, counsel, counselor, solicitor, legal executive, or public servant — with each role having different functions and privileges. Working as a lawyer generally involves the practical application of abstract legal theories and knowledge to solve specific problems. Some lawyers also work primarily in advancing the interests of the law and legal profession. Terminology Different legal jurisdictions have different requirements in the determination of who is recognized as being a lawyer. As a result, the meaning of the term "lawyer" may vary from place to place. Some jurisdictions have two types of lawyers, barrister and solicitors, while others fuse the two. A barrister (also known as an advocate or counselor in some jurisdictions) is a lawyer who typically specializ ...
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Admission To Practice Law
An admission to practice law is acquired when a lawyer receives a license to practice law. In jurisdictions with two types of lawyer, as with barristers and solicitors, barristers must gain admission to the bar whereas for solicitors there are distinct practising certificates. Becoming a lawyer is a widely varied process around the world. Common to all jurisdictions are requirements of age and competence; some jurisdictions also require documentation of citizenship or immigration status. However, the most varied requirements are those surrounding the preparation for the license, whether it includes obtaining a law degree, passing an exam, or serving in an apprenticeship. In English, admission is also called a law license. Basic requirements vary from country to country, as described below. In some jurisdictions, after admission the lawyer needs to maintain a current practising certificate to be permitted to offer services to the public. Africa The African Union comprises all 55 co ...
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Barrister
A barrister is a type of lawyer in common law jurisdictions. Barristers mostly specialise in courtroom advocacy and litigation. Their tasks include taking cases in superior courts and tribunals, drafting legal pleadings, researching law and giving expert legal opinions. Barristers are distinguished from both solicitors and chartered legal executives, who have more direct access to clients, and may do transactional legal work. It is mainly barristers who are appointed as judges, and they are rarely hired by clients directly. In some legal systems, including those of Scotland, South Africa, Scandinavia, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and the British Crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man, the word ''barrister'' is also regarded as an honorific title. In a few jurisdictions, barristers are usually forbidden from "conducting" litigation, and can only act on the instructions of a solicitor, and increasingly - chartered legal executives, who perform tasks such as cor ...
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Law Firms
A law firm is a business entity formed by one or more lawyers to engage in the practice of law. The primary service rendered by a law firm is to advise clients (individuals or corporations) about their legal rights and responsibilities, and to represent clients in civil or criminal cases, business transactions, and other matters in which legal advice and other assistance are sought. Arrangements Law firms are organized in a variety of ways, depending on the jurisdiction in which the firm practices. Common arrangements include: * Sole proprietorship, in which the attorney ''is'' the law firm and is responsible for all profit, loss and liability; * General partnership, in which all the attorneys who are members of the firm share ownership, profits and liabilities; * Professional corporations, which issue stock to the attorneys in a fashion similar to that of a business corporation; * Limited liability company, in which the attorney-owners are called "members" but are not direc ...
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Court Dress
Court dress comprises the style of clothes and other attire prescribed for members of courts of law. Depending on the country and jurisdiction's traditions, members of the court ( judges, magistrates, and so on) may wear formal robes, gowns, collars, or wigs. Within a certain country and court setting, there may be many times when the full formal dress is not used. Examples in the UK include many courts and tribunals including the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, and sometimes trials involving children. Commonwealth countries United Kingdom The Supreme Court Members of the old Judicial Committee of the House of Lords (or "Law Lords") and the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council never wore court dress (although advocates appearing before them did). Instead, they were dressed in ordinary business clothing. Since the creation of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom in 2009, the Justices of that court have retained the Law Lords' tradition of sitting unrobed. On cere ...
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Legal Aid
Legal aid is the provision of assistance to people who are unable to afford legal representation and access to the court system. Legal aid is regarded as central in providing access to justice by ensuring equality before the law, the right to counsel and the right to a fair trial. This article describes the development of legal aid and its principles, primarily as known in Europe, the Commonwealth of Nations and in the United States. Legal aid is essential to guaranteeing equal access to justice for all, as provided for by Article 6.3 of the European Convention on Human Rights regarding criminal law cases. Especially for citizens who do not have sufficient financial means, the provision of legal aid to clients by governments increases the likelihood, within court proceedings, of being assisted by legal professionals for free or at a lower cost, or of receiving financial aid. A number of delivery models for legal aid have emerged, including duty lawyers, community legal clini ...
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Legal Writing
Legal writing involves the analysis of fact patterns and presentation of arguments in documents such as legal memoranda and briefs. One form of legal writing involves drafting a balanced analysis of a legal problem or issue. Another form of legal writing is persuasive, and advocates in favor of a legal position. Another form legal writing involves drafting legal instruments, such as contracts and wills. Distinguishing features Authority Legal writing places heavy reliance on authority. In most legal writing, the writer must back up assertions and statements with citations of authority. This is accomplished by a unique and complicated citation system, unlike that used in any other genre of writing. The standard methods for American legal citation are defined by two competing rule books: the '' ALWD Citation Manual: A Professional System of Citation'' and ''The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation''. Different methods may be used within the United States and in other nation ...
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Advocate
An advocate is a professional in the field of law. Different countries' legal systems use the term with somewhat differing meanings. The broad equivalent in many English law–based jurisdictions could be a barrister or a solicitor. However, in Scottish, Manx, South African, Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Scandinavian, Polish, Israeli, South Asian and South American jurisdictions, "Advocate" indicates a lawyer of superior classification. "Advocate" is in some languages an honorific for lawyers, such as " Adv. Sir Alberico Gentili". "Advocate" also has the everyday meaning of speaking out to help someone else, such as patient advocacy or the support expected from an elected politician; this article does not cover those senses. Europe United Kingdom and Crown dependencies England and Wales In England and Wales, Advocates and proctors practiced civil law in the Admiralty Courts and also, but in England only, in the ecclesiastical courts of the Church of Engla ...
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Prosecutor
A prosecutor is a legal representative of the prosecution in states with either the common law adversarial system or the civil law inquisitorial system. The prosecution is the legal party responsible for presenting the case in a criminal trial against an individual accused of breaking the law. Typically, the prosecutor represents the state or the government in the case brought against the accused person. Prosecutor as a legal professional Prosecutors are typically lawyers who possess a law degree, and are recognised as suitable legal professionals by the court in which they are acting. This may mean they have been admitted to the bar, or obtained a comparable qualification where available - such as solicitor advocates in England and Wales. They become involved in a criminal case once a suspect has been identified and charges need to be filed. They are employed by an office of the government, with safeguards in place to ensure such an office can successfully pursue the pro ...
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Solicitor
A solicitor is a legal practitioner who traditionally deals with most of the legal matters in some jurisdictions. A person must have legally-defined qualifications, which vary from one jurisdiction to another, to be described as a solicitor and enabled to practise there as such. For example, in England and Wales a solicitor is admitted to practise under the provisions of the Solicitors Act 1974. With some exceptions, practising solicitors must possess a practising certificate. There are many more solicitors than barristers in England; they undertake the general aspects of giving legal advice and conducting legal proceedings. In the jurisdictions of England and Wales and in Northern Ireland, in the Australian states of New South Wales, Victoria, and Queensland, Hong Kong, South Africa (where they are called '' attorneys'') and the Republic of Ireland, the legal profession is split between solicitors and barristers (called ''advocates'' in some countries, for example Scotlan ...
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Judge
A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as a part of a panel of judges. A judge hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented by the barristers or solicitors of the case, assesses the credibility and arguments of the parties, and then issues a ruling in the case based on their interpretation of the law and their own personal judgment. A judge is expected to conduct the trial impartially and, typically, in an open court. The powers, functions, method of appointment, discipline, and training of judges vary widely across different jurisdictions. In some jurisdictions, the judge's powers may be shared with a jury. In inquisitorial systems of criminal investigation, a judge might also be an examining magistrate. The presiding judge ensures that all court proceedings are lawful and orderly. Powers and functions The ultimate task of a judge is to settle a legal dispute in a final and publicly lawful manner in agreement with substantia ...
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Legal Executive
Legal executives are a form of trained legal professional in certain jurisdictions. They often specialise in a particular area of law. The training that a Legal Executive undertakes usually includes both vocational training (a minimum of 3 years for those in England and Wales) and academic qualifications. Legal executives are associated with different membership bodies and different rights according to geographical regions. Legal executives are recognised in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and The Bahamas. There is no direct equivalent to a legal executive in Scotland. In England and Wales they hold Chartered status and are members of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEX). England and Wales Chartered Legal Executives in England and Wales are lawyers. They can become partners in law firms and are eligible to become judges and advocates subject to meeting eligibility requirements. As lawyers, they are ...
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