A Lawyer or Barrister is one of the noblest of professions and whilst there are a plethora of lawyers – what skills does a lawyer need in order to be a “cut” above the rest. Whilst this subject has probably been covered we give out opinion or advise based upon many years of educating young lawyers and also seeing them rise up the ranks.
1/ Excellent Foundation
Lawyers need first and foremost to have excellent foundations in Laws. Attending Law school and achieving excellent grades away is always a good to start this foundation – however no matter what grades you have achieved in law school will prepare you for the “real” deal. You will dealing with clients who look to you as a saviour to their problems and sometimes want unobtainable goals. Also if you practise criminal law you will have to face dilemmas is having to defend murders, rapists and pedophiles. you will have to profit in writing briefs, memos and have excellent articulation and written skills and an excellent memory. Lawyers need to conduct research and read Case Law and Statutes and find blind spots in the case that others have overseen.
2/ Research skills
Lawyers need to able to ask the client questions and research cases and form an effective legal strategy that the client is aware of and agrees to. Researching previous cases and legal . Researching how you can orate your case is extremely important before any appearance in court
Students must know how to analyse
3/ Good Communication skills
Lawyer in essence are professionals that sell advice to clients and help them in achieve their goals. The lawyer must be able to listened and be able to orate and articulate to the client in clear layman English what is possible or not given the clients brief. Often the mistake many young lawyer is not is to ask enough questions and probe the client perhaps because a young lawyer doesn’t want to be seen to be unknowledgable by probing you will find clues and maybe answers by extracting information that may be valuable in the case. Michael Mansfield one of Britains best barristers has achieved fame by securing freedom for many miscarriages of justice – He helped to free the Guildford four and Birmingham six and defended many prominent clients. In the case of the Guildford four – Lord Gifford QC and Human rights solicitor Michael Mansfield QC help quash life sentences for the 4 defendants charged with IRA attacks and had their sentences quashed in the court of appeal having already served 15 years – the case becoming one of the best cases of miscarriages of justice in British History.
Careful planing, meticulous research skills and not being afraid to ask questions no matter how “silly” are necessary traits for become an outstanding lawyer.
4/ Good Listening skills
Being an outstanding lawyer one needs to be able to Listen to the client and ask to ask questions and make deduction and certain crucial questions.
Tips to and rules to be a good listener :
- stop talking 🙂
- make the client at ease
- be patient and listen
- look engaged and answer questions to clarify
5/ Excellent skills in English
What ever country the student practises law in or Study Law in whilst the court cases and legal writing and spoken language in court are often in the countries native language most of the case Lawes and statues for research will be in English. Also it is vital that the lawyer han excellent grasp of English especially if they want to work for an International Law
6/ Meet the Clients Need
Having listened to the Clients effective strategies needs to be place in order to meet the clients needs and delivering results to the client. Experience Lawyers will give the clients possible outcomes based upon the clients needs and ultimately what the lawyer thinks us achievable. The disparity in unclear cases between what is hopefully achievable needs to be agreed with the client with a deliverable timetable. Ultimately realistic costs to the client need to be discussed and agreed.
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