5 Common Law Specialties

  • Criminal Law
  • Business Law
  • Family Law
  • Intellectual Property Law
  • Bankruptcy Law

As long as we have law enforcement and the court system, we will always have the need for lawyers. Becoming a lawyer requires going to school for several years. The candidate must complete four years of college, at least three years of law school and pass bar exams. Some aspiring lawyers choose different law specialties so they can focus on specific areas of law that interest them or because these areas are more in need of qualified lawyers. Here are five well-known specialties.

1. Criminal Law

Criminal law involves the government prosecution of someone who has allegedly committed a crime, as defined by law. Anyone who has ever been charged with a crime or knows someone charged with a crime knows that a criminal lawyer is probably going to provide the most help because this lawyer has specialized in criminal law and all that it involves. The lawyer who specializes in criminal law is going to be knowledgeable in areas of criminal law, including arrests, bail-related issues, plea bargains, arraignments, and any issues having to do with a criminal case or trial.

2. Business Law

Business law is a law specialty that deals with things having to do with commerce and industry. It may deal with business licenses, taxes, liability and even trademarking. Because it covers such a wide area of legal issues, business law may branch out into different areas of expertise. Small business law, for instance, focuses on providing legal counsel for someone starting a small business and may assist them with information on zoning, tax classification or licensing. Corporate law focuses on the structural and financial condition of an established corporation and may provide legal service or a regular basis.

3. Family Law

Family law has to do with anything having to do with families and any legal issues they may have regarding the family unit. Whether it’s a couple seeking a divorce, someone in need of a prenuptial agreement, a spouse seeking custody or someone in need of a domestic abuse restraining order, a family lawyer is the type of lawyer needed. Anything having to do with family relationships is addressed in family law. It’s been said that family law is the most emotional of all the law specialties because it relates to children, parents and relationships.

4. Intellectual Property Law

Intellectual property law is a law specialty that deals with intellectual property, such as trademarks, copyrights, industrial design, patents and trade secrets. If an individual invented a new product or wrote an article that needed to be copyrighted, the services of an intellectual property lawyer would be needed. Intellectual property lawyers, also known as IP attorneys, may deal with one of several branches: copyright law, patent law or trademark law. The Princeton Review reports that intellectual property law has seen much growth in the past decade.

Related Resource: Top 30 Most Affordable Law Degree Programs Online

5. Bankruptcy Law

Bankruptcy law deals with bankruptcy proceedings and all things bankruptcy-related. Bankruptcy laws are aimed at helping someone having financial problems and facing the prospect of bankruptcy. A bankruptcy lawyer will advise the individual if bankruptcy is the right choice, how best to repay their debts, any bankruptcy alternatives they may have or what type of bankruptcy they should file. Bankruptcy law is said to be very fulfilling and exciting. Bankruptcy lawyers have been more in demand in recent years.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that lawyers should see a job growth of eight percent between the years 2016 and 2026, which should result in about 65,000 new jobs created for lawyers by 2026. Job growth and career opportunities are generally better for lawyers who are certified in different law specialties.