There are many steps that can be taken to become a lawyer. If you know what they are, you can do them. For each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the Canadian provinces and territories, you will read about how to become a lawyer.
You will also learn about how to become a lawyer in Canada. All of the educational, experiential, entrance, and licensing requirements, as well as other things that must be met in order to become a lawyer in each state and keep that license, are explained here.
View Your State Requirements
Education and Examinations Steps Necessary To Become a Lawyer/Attorney
Lawyers are more important now than ever before because of changes in technology, foreign and domestic policy, and health care, which has led to a wide range of new specialties.
Immigration lawyers, intellectual property specialists, environmental lawyers, and employment and labor lawyers are getting more and more specialized training to become these types of lawyers. There are a lot of different types of lawyers in the field, with a lot of different specializations.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the U.S. Department of Labor, there will be 32,300 more jobs for lawyers in the next decade, which means there will be more jobs for lawyers. At the end of May 2019, most lawyers in the United States made $122,960 a year.
It’s true, though, that this good pay doesn’t come right away. Becoming a lawyer in any state or country takes a lot of education, including years of undergraduate and graduate work, difficult exams, and keeping your licence through continuing education.
If you want to become a lawyer or an attorney IN USA, choose the level of education below that fits your needs best, like high school or college:
- Pre-law Undergraduate Programs
- Online and Campus Law and Legal Studies Programs
- ABA Accredited Law Schools – Juris Doctor (JD) Degree
Choosing your undergraduate institution
The first step to becoming a lawyer in any country is to get your undergraduate degree. This is called pre-law education. There are no undergraduate majors that are sure to help you get into law school or become an attorney in the future.
If you want to become a lawyer, the ABA recommends certain undergraduate majors over others. These include English and history as well as politics and philosophy.
You should make sure that when you choose your undergraduate school, it has been approved by a regional or national accreditation agency that has been approved by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or the U.S. Department of Education (USDE).
After you finish college, you can register to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). This standardized test is given four times a year at testing centers all over the world. There was a COVID-19 pandemic. As of 2020-21, the exam will be taken online.
To find out how to prepare for the exam, what to expect on exam day, and how many points you need to get to get into an ABA-approved law school, look at this page.
Once you pass the LSAT, you will apply to and be accepted into the law school of your choice. If you want to get the Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from a school or program that has been approved by the ABA, you can do that now.
When you sign up for the LSAT in Step 2 above, you will have set up an account at LSAC.org. People who pay for the service called Credential Assembly Service (CAS) get their admission documents organized and apply to law schools for them, which speeds up the process.
When you finish law school, you will be able to take the bar examination in the state where you want to become a lawyer or an attorney.
If you meet all of your state’s other bar admission requirements, which you can find in the NCBEX Comprehensive Guide to Bar Admission Requirements, you will be able to do so. Preparing well for your state’s bar exam will help you do well on it. Each state’s bar association recommends different resources that you can use to do this.
After You’ve Been Admitted to Your State’s Bar, make sure that you know what your state’s continuing education requirements are for you to keep being a lawyer.
If your state allows you to specialize in law and this sounds like something you’d like to do, you might want to look into it. For example, the State Bar of California has its own Board of Legal Specialization, which allows you to become certified in a wide range of fields, such as family law, maritime law, and immigration law.
You should also think about joining voluntary membership groups for lawyers in your state. Within most states, there are groups for lawyers who specialise in certain things, as well as groups for women and African Americans.