If you compare careers like being a doctor or an engineer, being a criminal defense lawyer is also among the more respected and lucrative jobs. Because of this, many people aspire to become defense attorneys, which turns this career into a more competitive field. And, of course, not all aspiring defense attorneys can work towards their goals and achieve their dreams even when they know how and where to find the resources.
Becoming a criminal defense lawyer is even more challenging if you’re a complete newbie in the field. Therefore, to make your journey to become a successful defense lawyer effortless, you can start by getting inspiration from successful defense attorneys who have been in the business for a long. An excellent example of them is Sean Fagan Criminal Defence Lawyer. Apart from getting inspired by what attorneys like Sean and others have achieved in their criminal defense lawyer careers, let’s also look at other important steps you need to take to become a criminal defense lawyer.
Completing the Educational Requirements
Regardless of when you develop the desire to become a criminal defense lawyer, the first step towards achieving your dream is to meet certain educational requirements. These include earning a bachelor’s or a law degree and passing legal tests that include bar examinations.
If you’re still a high school student, you can begin your journey by taking challenging courses and involving yourself with activities that sharpen your ability to argue and win contests. For example, you can study communication skills as a subject that helps develop your mental agility and interpersonal communication abilities.
You must also join a law school and obtain a four-year degree. The school must also be accredited and approved to teach law. Besides taking the law course, you must also involve yourself with helpful preparatory subjects covering sociology, psychology, government, and criminology.
Remember also to keep your grades high because most law schools will use your undergraduate performance in determining whether you have the intellectual ability to become a defense lawyer or not.
Participating in Criminal Defense Law Preparatory Courses
Once you pursue law and specialize as a criminal defense attorney, most law schools require you to take at least one criminal law course in your first year. Use this course as an opportunity to map your expectations and the level of expertise you need after becoming a licensed criminal defense attorney. The courses you must pay attention to include state, federal, race, and criminal defense law subjects.
These courses will help you align your academic experience with the outside world and how practicing defense lawyers are facing and handling matters in their careers. They will also prevent you from the need to carry out extensive research on various areas of criminal law classes that your school might not offer.
Training with a Law Firm
While you must join a law school and earn a degree, training with a law firm is another vital aspect of boosting your criminal defense attorney credibility. A law firm with a team of experienced criminal defense attorneys will expose you to different criminal cases and how to handle them.
For example, you can train with a law firm as their secretary. This way, you learn the procedures involved in preparing for witness statements or how to train your clients in making their statements and when to avoid commenting.
Training with a law firm can also be a great way of gaining experience through your internship program. Experienced attorneys expose you to regional, interstate, and even national and international crimes through the firm.
As a result, you gain valuable experience to add to your job application. The same can also get you trusted recommendations and referrals when you begin to practice.
Boosting Your Knowledge in Critical Thinking and Legal Writing
You will spend much time researching cases and combining various criminal defense statutes as a criminal defense lawyer. You will also analyze the law, think critically, and involve in legal writings.
So, to become a criminal defense attorney who can win many cases regardless of their difficulties, find ways to boost your legal writing and critical thinking knowledge. An excellent example is participating in research contests and reviewing multiple cases – present and past – regardless of whether you were involved with them or not.
In the end, becoming a defense attorney is not impossible. But still, to become a respected and successful defense lawyer, you can map and sharpen your career success by attaining the needed academic requirements and implementing guidelines like the ones above.