So you need a lawyer. And you need one fast. But where should you look?
You could do an internet search and randomly select a firm from the results page. Or you could be a little more thoughtful in your selection.
To do that, you’ll want to answer an important question first: who are the possible employers for a lawyer? Some lawyers work independently, but most are associated with a firm or business entity.
Which kind of lawyer you need will depend on the specifics of your case. But we’ve provided a general overview in the article below to get you started.
A Law Firm
Law firms are the first and most obvious answer to the question, “Who are the possible employers for a lawyer?” Many law students enter school knowing well in advance that they want to work for a law firm when they graduate. Many of these students even know which firm they want to work for.
There are several reasons an attorney may choose to work for a law firm. Namely, an established firm offers:
- Greater earning potential
- Opportunities to work with accomplished and skilled colleagues
- Extensive resources
- Access to an established client base
- Advancement opportunities
When you hire an attorney from a law firm, you also gain access to extensive resources. For example, at Morgan & Morgan, we have attorneys, paralegals, legal aides, and more support staff who will be dedicated to your case. These professionals are skilled at navigating legal terrain both in and out of the courtroom.
Your Local Government
Local government lawyers are those who are employed by your city, county, or district council. In this role, a lawyer may perform a range of tasks, including:
- Acting on behalf of and giving advice to council members
- Writing legal documents
- Making strategic plans
- Handling litigation
Most lawyers who work in government have a wealth of experience, but an attorney can make their way into a training position. Because government employees are generally restricted from private work, you won’t be able to hire a local government lawyer for your case.
Your State Government
The chances are that you’ve heard of prosecutors. These attorneys are the professionals who charge and try people who are alleged to have committed a crime. Another name for a prosecutor is a state attorney. That’s because prosecutors are employees of the state.
Criminal trials aren’t the only responsibility of state attorneys. In fact, their job description is to work on behalf of the public interest. This means that a state attorney may also file lawsuits against dishonest corporations, offer legal advice to elected officials, and take civil suits to court.
Again, you can’t hire a government worker to work privately for you. But by nature, this is exactly what a state attorney does. They are usually elected by the people they represent, including you.
The Federal Government
The next answer to “Who are the possible employers for a lawyer?” is the federal government. The federal government is a huge employer of attorneys and can be found recruiting at some of the nation’s most prestigious schools.
For many, a job with the federal government is a no-brainer. These jobs generally come with good hours, respectable pay, and amazing benefits. All that adds up to many people’s idea of the perfect job.
There are many legal positions within the federal government. Some lawyers become clerks for the U.S. district courts. Others serve as Assistant U.S. Attorneys. And still others are called to work for administrations, like the FDA.
If you’ve ever had to file an insurance claim, you may have brushed shoulders with an insurance lawyer. These legal professionals are responsible for ensuring their clients (the insurance providers) don’t pay more than they should. They may offer legal advice or represent their client in court or during negotiations.
Even though it’s rare for an insurance claim to go to court, these companies like to hire the best. So if you ever have to go head to head with an insurance company, you may want to employ your own legal support to ensure you aren’t talked into a settlement that is less than what you actually deserve.
Other Large Corporations
Finally, the last answer to “Who are the possible employers for a lawyer?” is large corporations. Corporate lawyers have a range of responsibilities. Generally speaking, these professionals may perform any or all of the following tasks:
- Draft, review, and negotiate contracts
- Oversee mergers and acquisitions
- Create corporate bylaws and policies
- Help the corporation expand their public and private financing options
- Prevent fraud, insider training, and other illegal behaviors
When a lawyer is hired by a corporation, their responsibility is to the business entity, not individual shareholders or employees. Anyone who has tried to start a business will tell you that local, state, and federal laws can make the process more complicated. A corporate lawyer helps a business stay within regulations.
How to Find the Best Lawyer for Your Case
Now you know who the possible employers are for a lawyer. But that doesn’t mean you know where to find the perfect lawyer for your case.
Generally speaking, you should hire an attorney from a law firm with experience in the area of law you are dealing with. If you’ve suffered a personal injury, hire a personal injury lawyer. If you are dealing with a product defect, hire a defective product attorney, and so on.
But once you’ve narrowed down your field of law, you may still have dozens (or even hundreds) of potential lawyers to choose from. At Morgan & Morgan, we believe that a good attorney offers more than legal knowledge. You should also look for a lawyer who:
- Has a personality that is compatible with your own
- Is prompt and communicative
- Is enthusiastic about working with you
The best attorneys will offer you true support so that you have everything you need from start to finish.