Just as there are several types of doctors, who specialize in specific areas of medicine, there are different types of lawyers too. They all specialize in certain aspects of the law. Whether you need a lawyer to file a legal petition, or if it is merely to ask certain legal questions, it is important to know what kind of lawyer you need to approach.
1. Family Lawyer
With the rise in the number of divorce cases, family lawyers often are also commonly referred to as divorce lawyers. These family practice lawyers or divorce attorneys are trained in family law to help them handle cases such as custodial rights, property rights, marriage annulment, and child support.
2. Corporate Lawyer
A Corporate Lawyer or a business attorney’s most crucial task is to ensure that his client, which is mostly a business entity, complies by corporate laws and regulations. Instead of doing the rounds of a courtroom, corporate lawyers are more focused on chalking out legal framework that protects their client’s interest. A business lawyer could be part of a law firm, or he could be part of a company’s in-house legal team. The corporate lawyers are also responsible for framing the legal terms for negotiation of contracts, acquisitions and mergers.
3. Tax Lawyer
The state and federal tax system is a complex world, and this is where a tax lawyer comes into play. A tax lawyer assists individuals and business houses to comply with confusing tax laws. Most of them play a crucial role in defending their clients following an audit by the IRS and are facing either a jail term or huge fines.
4. Criminal Defense Lawyer
It is a criminal lawyer’s job to defend an individual or an organisation charged with a crime. The criminal defense lawyers or public defenders handle several types of criminal cases, which may range from fraud or drunken driving to sex and violent crimes.
It is important to hire a criminal defence lawyer as he will be in a better position to review the first information report filed by police, the documentation and supporting evidence in their custody. The defense lawyer will also take stock of any available video footage to ensure that his/her client is not guilty. If the case is against his/her client, the lawyer will discuss the best solutions with the client and if this is the first instance then he requests for community service instead of jail-term.
5. Employment & Labor Lawyer
An employment and labor lawyer assists both employers and employees in matters pertaining to the legal guidelines set by the federal and the state government. The scope of a labor lawyer, however, is not limited to that, he or she also works to protect the employees’ rights against discrimination, unfair labor practices or sexual harassment.
6. Finance & Securities Lawyer
A Finance and Securities lawyer has a key role to play in the smooth functioning of a company. With the complex changes in the financial laws, the securities lawyer ensures that the client is kept up to date with the changing rules and regulations. The finance and securities lawyer also provides crucial inputs that help companies in planning their investments, besides recovering their losses in instances of wrongdoing.
7. Mergers & Acquisitions Lawyer (M&A)
The Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) lawyers help large companies to secure their financing and chalk out watertight contracts while buying other businesses. Mergers and acquisitions is a much sought after branch of corporate law. The demand is such that only the exceptional few, who score really high in law school get to work with a big firm.
The Mergers and Acquisitions lawyers closely follow the M&A tractions of the company and are there to assist at every step, starting from negotiations to legal wording for the contract and finally the performance of the M&A contract. For the firm handling the M&A of a company, the entire traction is important as the consequences of it will have a far-reaching effect on the future of the firm.
8. Intellectual Property Lawyer (IP)
The Intellectual Property law (commonly known as IP) has become an integral part of business today. The IP laws put checks in place to protect the ownership and accessibility of ideas and inventions.
The Intellectual property law ensures that the concepts, ideas or products are protected. The IP lawyers assist in patenting, trade-marking and copyrighting of ideas, concepts and products.
9. Estate Planning Lawyer
It is the job of an estate planning lawyer to draw a plan that not only helps his clients but also protects his/her client’s family from the repercussions of disability and death. A good estate lawyer will ensure that the plan protects your property during or after your life but it also comprises of a comprehensive plan that will save those inheriting the asset from probate and save them good tax money.
10. Traffic Lawyer
A traffic lawyer handles an array of cases starting from drunk driving to moving violations, besides parking tickets, driving without insurance and reckless driving. It is a traffic lawyer’s job to provide legal assistance and advice to those who are accused of traffic violations.
11. Personal Injury Lawyer
The personal injury lawyers are dubbed as experts in an area of law that is widely known as tort law. This branch of law covers rather a whole array of civil and private wrongs or injuries, including breach of contract and defamation. The tort law mainly focuses on ensuring that the victim is made whole again, it is also aimed at discouraging others from repeating the same mistake.
The PI lawyers assist the victim receive compensation for their losses. The PI attorney will argue that his client has to be paid compensation for loss of income due to medical expenses, emotional distress, inability to work and legal costs.
12. Real Estate Lawyer
All legal aspects related to the real estate transactions are taken care of by certified legal professionals, known as real estate lawyers. These certified professionals, who are also called Real Estate Attorneys, are entrusted with the task of preparing and reviewing legal documents related to real estate. They also help in the transfer of titles and negotiate the finer points of a real estate agreement.
13. Bankruptcy Lawyer
A bankruptcy lawyer’s main focus is to ensure that his client is able to cut a good deal with the court. The lawyer often assists the client to reduce or in some cases even eliminate debts, but if all fails, he will advise his client to move forward with the bankruptcy petition. An individual or a large firm both can be the clients of the firm.
14. Civil Litigation Lawyer
A civil litigation lawyer wears several hats. He may specialize in many areas of law including family law, personal injury and employment. In a civil legal case, there can be two or more parties that can be involved in the dispute, and feel that they are entitled for money. However, unlike criminal proceedings, no party is considered a criminal. The trial, still will have a court proceeding and same procedures as the criminal case is followed. Nobody is, however, arrested. The decisions of such cases are either made by the judge or the jury.
15. Digital Media & Internet Lawyer
The worldwide web is a complex network with a complex set of problems and to address them, we need experts who can protect us from the online onslaught. And that is where digital media and Internet lawyers come handy to deal with online defamation, libel, piracy, cyber-crimes and Internet marketing.
16. Entertainment Lawyer
Entertainment lawyers assist their clients in understanding the legal framework in a contract and thereby they ensure that the terms in the agreement are in the best interest of their clients. They work with songwriters, music producers, composers, Record producers and Recording Groups. These lawyers also negotiate touring, recording, merchandising and publishing contracts.
17. Immigration Lawyer
Immigration lawyers mostly work as an advisor or counselor assisting foreign nationals and immigrants. These lawyers specialize in the immigration laws and assist people who are facing difficulty in dealing with US immigration office.
As an advisor or counselor, these lawyers provide valuable insight into the country’s immigration law to immigrants who have to interact with US immigration authorities. These immigration attorneys guide the immigrants in matters such as visa applications, citizenship, naturalization and green cards and deportation issues.
18. Legal Malpractice or Professional Responsibility Lawyer
Who should one go to, if there is malpractice by a lawyer? In that case, you will have to approach a legal malpractice or professional responsibility lawyer. Releasing case related information, missed deadlines, inadequate investigation and mistakes that hamper the case are all considered legal malpractice. Often a client is not aware of these rights but with the help of a legal malpractice lawyer he may be able to even sue his former lawyer for incompetent legal representation. The lawyer can even help recover whatever expenses were incurred for the case.