We usually hear “Advocate”,” Attorney”,” Paralegal” and “Lawyer” but have you ever thought if both are the same or any minute difference between these terms. Let us have a look at it.
The term “Lawyer” is for professionals in the field of law on a wider point of view. It can also be used for a law student, a law graduate but they are unable to represent any client in court. To be a Lawyer, at least an LL.B or Bachelor Of Law degree needs to be attained.
“Advocate “ is a lawyer who is eligible to represent his clients in court of law and to be an “Advocate “, the person has to be a member of the General Bar Council. All Advocates are Lawyers but not all Lawyers are Advocates. An Advocate is also called a “Barrister”.
Barrister is for those who practice law in the UK. Barrister might appear at Bar and represents clients in court but does not deal with clients directly. They deal with clients only through a “Solicitor”.Solicitors can conduct litigation in court but cannot plead cases in open court. If in the UK, they are called Solicitors then in the US, they are Attorney-At-Law. So a Solicitor is an attorney who can sign contracts or can act in place of their clients in terms of legal requirements. Solicitors are in direct contact with clients.
To be an “Attorney”, one needs to get a degree in Law then articles and later, Board Exam which if passed, court can admit as an attorney. An Attorney is one who pleads or defends a case in court of law. Attorneys are lawyers but not all Lawyers are Attorneys. Attorney or more aptly Attorney-At-Law is for any lawyer in the US.
Paralegal or legal assistants do work related to the legal field and work on behalf of the lawyer, attorney. Drafting and filing of legal documents, doing research on legal topics or matters are some of the works of paralegal. They work in legal departments of governments or corporations or major law firms or in corporate law.
These legal terms are quite confusing and having clarity on these basics is quite important. They have minor differences though all are referring to legal professionals who are in different areas field of law and it mentions how legal professionals in other countries are called.
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