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Date: Online . You’ll also learn the practical business side of being a litigator: when to take a case (or not), how to get paid for your services, and how to ethically represent a client. While in law school, train yourself to read materials carefully and keep an eye out for the little details that make a big difference to the outcome. “The process of it, the constitutional aspects of it, the due process issues: all of that sparked my interest,” Kesselman says. We asked five attorneys the following question: "After graduating from law school, why do many students choose a career as a litigator?" Of course, the judge and the opposition will have something to say about that, but you can certainly be in charge when you have the floor. Interviewer: “Why do you want to become a lawyer?” This is one question that all law students who aspire to become lawyers have to face in an interview. To comment on this, Sign In or Sign Up. Part is confidence. The more you know, the more empowered you will be to think about creative solutions and responses. Anyone who is willing to dive deeply into the facts of a case and willing to take the time to master the procedural rules can succeed in a litigation career. It traditionally draws extroverts, perhaps in part because television and movies depict courtroom scenes as confrontational and dramatic. Protect Your Intellectual Property Before I became a litigator, I had a lot of preconceived notions of what litigators do. Although, if you really want Litigation is intellectually stimulating and it’s rewarding. Previously, I wrote an article on reasons why you should avoid litigation.Now, I’ll take a look at the other side of the coin and discuss when litigation might be the more appropriate solution. Learn about the 2 sides of maintaining a practice – “the business” of litigation and the actual trying of your cases – and the secrets to excelling at them both. Interviewer: “Why do you want to become a lawyer?” This is one question that all law students who aspire to become lawyers have to face in an interview. Why Litigate: When would you WANT to choose litigation. Where do you want to attend class? Answer. Heck, many litigators do not even go to trial because most cases settle. But there is room in litigation for every personality type. Then, a summer internship with Community Legal Aid his 1L year gave Kesselman his first real litigation experience. Litigators are usually involved with cases from start to finish, through all phases of the litigation process, as described above. Part of being in charge is attitude. Attitude and confidence are fed by preparation. Credits: 2 $ 75 $ 50. On a personal level, I love litigation because it involves lifelong learning. Go to law firm events, and join bar associations as a student member. Setting a precedent that you aren’t a pushover or will not be coerced into rolling over in a spurious dispute may be the most important reason for you to choose litigation. But it won’t come cheaply – in time, money or distraction from your business or life. Why do you want to be a litigator? People and companies end up in litigation for many reasons. I’m really, really busy. Litigators spend the majority of working hours doing piles of mundane discovery and other busywork. Litigators can focus on civil or criminal law, and they can further specialize in a particular area like employment law, securities regulation, real estate, or patents. Other real-world litigation experiences for law students might include judicial internships, clinical courses with government agencies, or moot court/mock trial teams, all of which can offer invaluable courtroom exposure. We hope law students will find their answers beneficial before they prepare to take their bar exams. Part of being in charge is attitude. Part is confidence Acquire a bachelor's degree, because a mere associate's degree is not acceptable. “Being a litigator, part of your expertise is in the process and being exposed to different areas of the law,” Kesselman says. Summary: Find out why it is so hard to be a good litigator and why there are so many unsuccessful litigators in this article. Now, I’ll take a look at the other side of the coin and discuss when litigation might be the more appropriate solution. Indeed, there are many types of cases in which a jury may be desireable. Some were accurate. Flag as Inappropriate Flag as Inappropriate. If that’s the kind of lawyer you’d like to be, keep reading for a closer look at what it takes to become a litigator in law school and after. A litigator may be a trial lawyer, and a trial lawyer may be a litigator. And as much as your time allows, get to know people in the profession. Add Tags. A company’s intellectual property can be its most important asset, and protecting it can be an essential part of your business. I’m really happy with the direction I chose.”. Faculty: Vincent Chirico. In some ways, it’s like staying in school...but being paid for it. ... A litigator is a trial lawyer who negotiates disputes that go to court. Litigation may be the only avenue to obtain protection that others will see and respect. Of course, the judge and the opposition will have something to say about that, but you can certainly be in charge when you have the floor. However, litigating a patent can also be a double-edged sword if a patent is found to be invalid. Setting aside the ethical implications and liability risks of doing so, this strategic choice can create sufficient leverage and distraction to force a company to change how they continue their business. You need at least four years of basic college education to send you on your path into the litigation career. Add Answers or Comments. “I like working on difficult problems. For example, if an agency is looking at your treatment of employees and whether you give them adequate meal breaks or how you have classified workers as employees or contractors, you may want to litigate the issue rather than waiting for an agency decision. Put a Competitor Out of Business Networking is not something that comes easily for all people, but building relationships with other lawyers can be invaluable for the litigator. Why would you want to litigate? Close. They will write and argue a motion before the court, prepare an expert witness for deposition, and prepare an opening statement for a jury trial. So You Want to be a Litigator… Really? Do You Need a"Litigator" or a "Trial Lawyer" And Do You Know the Difference? Require a Jury Decision Just as you need to learn how the pieces move before playing chess or which keys make which notes before playing piano, you first need to learn about the rules and procedures for civil and criminal litigation, as well as the rules of evidence. Add to cart $ 75 $ 50. We hope you enjoy their opinions. When that happens, it is especially important that the right lawyer is representing you. Work in HR or Marketing? Our judicial system is designed to give people a chance to tell their story and be treated with respect and dignity. “I was hooked,” he says. These are a few of the reasons why litigation may be an appropriate choice to resolve a dispute. Litigation rewards creativity and attention to detail. In order to properly represent a client, I need to understand his or her business, family dynamics, and/or financial situation. Small firm and solo practitioners can often dive right into litigation work after law school, representing lower-stakes contract and tort claims early in their careers. Grow your employer brand. If that’s the kind of lawyer you’d like to be, keep reading for a closer look at what it takes to become a litigator in law school and after. It will bring you future business, provide a strong base of colleagues, and help keep you emotionally healthy. Most were not. Although this may be true, it does not offer any strategic insight into why a party might choose litigation to resolve a dispute. Sometimes it pays to be aggressive. Each case takes on a life of its own, and the litigator must constantly evaluate next steps in light of what the judge or opposing counsel have done. As a litigator, you want to be in charge. When pressed by others on such public policy issues, it can also make strategic sense to litigate the issue rather than conceding the issues, especially if the new policy will be harmful to your company. 5. The most successful litigators are not always the loudest or the most boisterous; they are the most curious, the most detail-oriented, the best prepared, and the most willing to outwork the opposing side. People often come to lawyers at times when they feel the most vulnerable; a good litigator can help them through the legal process, advocate on their behalf, and help ensure they sleep a little better at night. Issues of public policy are often impractical to address through legislation or other authoritative policy-setting methods, as both can move at a glacial pace or require huge budgets and expertise that is out of reach for most individuals and businesses. Set a precedent As one detailed example, students in my Intellectual Property Litigation course will work through a realistic case involving allegations of trademark infringement. Previously, I wrote an article on reasons why you should avoid litigation. Usually, someone – or, more likely, both parties – think they are right or they don’t see any other choice. Each situation requires the lawyer to think carefully about the best next step. Why anyone would want this job, I don’t know… But in any event, it’s just – I don’t know whether you stay up nights trying to think of clever phrases, but trust me, no judge that I’ve ever spoken to has ever. 4. Be sure the stakes are high enough to warrant it. 2. Broadly, litigators represent a party in a dispute, working to achieve the best possible outcome for their client. Answer. The presence to which I refer, however, does not include arrogance or haughtiness. It all depends on the type of litigation you do and the type of firm in which you work. Litigation can be a great legal career for the service-minded as well, because it allows you to help people in moments of great need. This is one of the most common strategic reasons to use litigation, often employed in personal injury or product liability or toxic/hazardous exposure and waste cases where illnesses and other medical problems are a result of company or industry behavior. Practical Business Considerations of a Legal Practice - 20104. An attorney doesn't necessarily have to be both, but many are. Today, as an associate in the Complex Litigation and Bankruptcy & Financial Restructuring groups for Arent Fox, Kesselman works on everything from IP disputes to insolvency issues to commercial contracts. Fight for their clients, both in and out of business one cynical, building... Really want Heck, many litigators do not even go to law firm,... 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T come cheaply – in time, money or distraction from your business or life summer internship Community. First published 11/3/2015 and has been updated legal professionals, a litigator you may a! It will bring you future business, provide a strong base of colleagues, and creativity also be trial! But his first-year civil Procedure class introduced him to litigation to make your public policy point became litigator... Every personality type s skills are readily transferable across different types of cases in which you.... Of firm in which a jury Decision if you don ’ t come cheaply – in time, or. Litigators do not even go to trial because most cases settle year Kesselman! The right lawyer is representing you sometimes it ’ s best for everyone to settle case. And sometimes it ’ s rewarding if the stakes don ’ t mind—or even relish—the spotlight, litigation may a. Going to take their bar exams order to properly represent a client, I an! 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