Jurisprudence is the totality of all legal sciences that study the legal system as a whole, as well as the complex of knowledge about the state and administration. A lawyer is a qualified specialist who is engaged in practical activities in the field of law. He interprets and applies state laws in order to ensure the legitimacy of the activities of all individuals and legal entities, and therefore, fixes the offenses themselves and, with special judicial powers, determines the measure of responsibility and establishes the punishment for the perpetrator. This profession rightly seems to many to be extremely difficult, because in addition to a thorough knowledge of all branches of law, from a professional lawyer, special inner qualities are required: well-developed analytical thinking, logic, pedantry, and so on. You also need to be a good psychologist and have the gift of persuasion. In addition, a lawyer must be highly educated and familiar with a wide variety of fields.
The legal profession is very difficult to characterize as a whole, as it includes many specializations. The pros and cons of each direction can vary greatly. But we can highlight the general advantages of the profession of a lawyer:
- A wide range of specialties to choose from
- The social significance of the profession
- Protection of rights and freedoms
- Career growth
- Opportunity to make good money
How do you study law in the USA?
Full-time training on J.D. lasts 3 years. During this time, students receive a comprehensive and fundamental legal education.
In the 1st year, students study legal writing, contracts, offenses, criminal law, constitutional law, etc.
In the 2nd year, law school students receive maximum practical experience. At this stage, students are faced with the famous Socratic method, which is used in its pure form only in American law schools and attracts students here from all over the world. The methodology consists in the fact that students study real court cases and legal issues, and the teachers do not so much explain something to the students themselves, as they conduct a dialogue with them and ask questions. Due to this approach, the student develops legal thinking, develops logic, determines his own methods of collecting evidence, building a line of defense or accusation.
Through teaching the Socratic method and participating in mock court sessions in the 2nd year, students can gain a unique hands-on experience. Based on this experience, at the end of the 2nd year, students begin looking for an internship. Often it is this very place that subsequently becomes the first place of permanent work of a young lawyer after graduation.
In the 3rd year, students identify with those areas of law that interest them most and choose electives. For example, you can study in-depth international law, immigration law, antitrust law, or intellectual property law. In addition, in the 3rd year, students undergo an internship, are looking for a job, and prepare for the final exam.
After completing the study program, students take a specialized and very difficult legal exam (bar exam), which shows whether the graduate is ready for professional legal practice.
Legal degrees in the USA
American law schools offer 3 law degrees:
- Juris Doctor (J.D.)
Study period: 3 years full-time or 4 years by correspondence
What education you need to have: a bachelor's degree in a related or any other specialty
This degree is required for every practicing lawyer in the United States. It provides a fundamental legal education, the opportunity to work in a profession or continue education.
- Master of Laws (L.L.M.)
Study period: 1 year
What education you need to have: a J.D.
This degree is suitable for students who want to delve deeper into a specific area of law and foreigners who need to become better acquainted with the US legal system.
- Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.)
Study period: 3 years
What education you need: L.L.M. degree
S.J.D. degree Equivalent to the classic PhD and is the highest law degree in the United States. In most cases, the S.J.D. are received by those who want to continue teaching law. Note that the S.J.D. degree, in contrast to the J.D. and L.L.M. is not offered in all law schools.
Pass Bar Exam
Law school graduates take a difficult exam and then receive a license. In the exam, it is important to show not only knowledge of the judicial system, but also to show character, competence - everything that confirms your ability to represent the interests of others. The admission process is different for each state, but it is not a problem to check where the Massachusetts bar exam will take place, or the cost of the Minnesota bar exam, all information is publicly available.
Legal specialties are in high demand and no less high supply. A lawyer has a wide range of areas of activity - public administration, a lawyer in civil law, criminal law, environmental law, and so on, depending on the needs of organizations and individual citizens. Plus, once in a difficult life situation, it is much easier to get out of it, knowing how to act.