Law Firm Or In-House
A law firm is a professional service corporation, limited liability partnership or joint venture between attorneys that provides legal services to clients. A firm may specialize in a particular area of the law, such as criminal or civil litigation or corporate matters such as mergers and acquisitions. Chagrin Falls Business Lawyer may also be involved in a broad range of general legal practice, such as personal injury or real estate.
A typical law firm includes a number of different types of employees, including lawyers, paralegals and legal secretaries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, all of these occupations made up one-third of the workforce in the legal services industry as of May 2013. These jobs require attention to detail and an ability to work well under pressure.
In addition, legal professionals need to understand and adhere to the firm hierarchy in order to receive top assignments. The hierarchy is often based on billing hours and other performance metrics. This can create a stressful environment, especially for those who are not naturally competitive.
As with other businesses, law firms may experience mergers and reorganizations. The focus, organization and resources of a firm can shift dramatically when departments are added or eliminated. This happens because of changes in client demand, conflict of interest and other factors. Mergers among law firms tend to be assortative, in that firms that are primarily from the same legal system are likely to merge. A notable exception is King & Wood Mallesons, a multinational law firm that resulted from the merger of two English and Australian law firms.
For those who prefer to avoid the stress and competition of a law firm, in-house legal positions offer a number of benefits. In-house legal jobs can be less stressful, because the workload is not as heavy and the compensation is typically higher than that of a law firm. In addition, in-house legal positions provide exposure to the entire life cycle of a business strategy, whereas law firm positions are often more focused on one aspect of the process.
In-house jobs can also be more rewarding in terms of career satisfaction, because they are usually considered to be more collaborative than law firm positions. Finding an in-house legal position can be difficult, though, because many legal professionals prefer to work at law firms. One survey found that 49% of in-house legal professionals felt that their fellow legal professionals treated them with more respect than law firm colleagues. This can be due to the fact that in-house legal departments are often more collaborative and treat their employees as a team. In contrast, law firm lawyers frequently compete with each other for assignments and billable hours. In some cases, this can lead to a dog-eat-dog environment. This is why it's important for candidates to carefully consider their options before making a move.