Criminal Justice

There Are Many Program Options to Choose From When Considering Criminal Justice

A career in criminal justice is not only rewarding but also incredibly flexible. There is a huge variety of topics a person could focus on when considering a law degree. For example, a lawyer might specialize in real estate and property law, intellectual property rights, or issues having to do with the healthcare industry, malpractice, and litigation. Environmental law is becoming an increasingly relevant topic, as are legal matters pertaining to the media and entertainment sectors. Businesses large and small will always need a good lawyer to help them navigate the complex world of corporate law as well, so really there’s no such thing as “just a lawyer.”

To keep a case from having to wend its way through the court system, mediators or arbitrators might be brought in to try and help aggrieved parties find common ground and avoid costly trials. Of course, as the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, which is where legal experts like personal title examiners, abstractors, and searchers come in. They review documents and contracts to make sure all the required information is present, in order, and written out in a way that’s agreeable to all parties concerned, avoiding the need for legal action altogether. Not to be forgotten there’s also the literal army of paralegals and clerks that specialize in research and administrative needs. Keeping in mind that judges preside over legal matters and professors of law ensure that legal professionals are prepared for their roles, and it’s easy to see how the sky is the limit for anyone wishing to work in the legal sector.

If all of this sounds a bit overwhelming, don’t worry – there are a few primary decisions that can determine the direction of your legal career quickly. One of the first and most important questions a person should ask themselves is how much education they’re willing and/or able to afford. The traditional educational path to becoming a practicing lawyer can easily take seven to eight years: one needs to earn a bachelor’s degree first, then go on to earn a Juris Doctor. It’s common for students to spend some time gaining real-world experience through either a job or an internship, which adds another year or two to the process.

On the other hand, court clerks and legal secretaries can find work right out of high school. Same goes for personal title examiners, abstractors, and searchers. For paralegals and legal assistants, a two-year degree is a standard, though a four-year degree might make advancement and specialization easier. Mediators and arbitrators both require a bachelor’s degree, with graduate degrees in law or business being common as well.

In other words, if the law is your passion, there’s certain to be a legal career that’s perfect for you. And since the entire legal industry is projected to grow by at least 10 percent for the foreseeable future, a degree that helps you make this happen is sure to be a wise investment.

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