When you think of a career in law, for many people it may conjure up an image of the courtroom from Law & Order, the detectives from CSI, or maybe something far less exciting such as an old man in a white wig and red robes. But the reality of a career in law is very different. A career in this industry is varied and can take you into many different areas.
The Northern Ireland legal sector has grown significantly in recent years, with local firms operating competitively within Northern Ireland and beyond. The sector has been boosted by investment from global legal companies which have introduced a wide range of opportunities for qualified and support staff within their firms.
Aside from being a solicitor, a barrister or a judge, there are many different career paths you can take in the legal sector. Roles such as a paralegal, legal executive or court clerk are all alternative routes you can take to begin your career in this industry. Some employers may require a law degree for these roles and some many not, requirements will vary depending on each employer.
If you choose to start a career in law there are many different options you can take. If you decide you want to practice, you can join a law firm such as Cason McDowell, who are one of the most well-respected local law firms in NI, working with many of NI’s Top 100 companies. Another local law firm who hires graduates is Tughans. Tughans are an award-winning firm who works with global brands such as Tesco, Diageo, Abercrombie & Fitch and the Hilton Group.
If you would prefer to work for a larger company, there are other international law firms such as Herbert Smith Freehills and Allen & Overy who have set up a base here. These firms are well established and well regarded in the industry, and frequently take on graduates every year.
If being on the front line isn’t for you, you could go ‘in-house’ and work at any employer in a legal capacity, eg: a Legal Associate at Pwc for example, utilising your knowledge in the legal world but applying it to a different industry.