The legal path

While civil and criminal law are popular specialisations, a number of fresh law graduates now opt for niche fields. Here are a few upcoming areas students can consider:

PROPERTY LAW What is it?

Property law entails solving cases related to personal or real property.

Job role:

In general, the job of a property lawyer entails taking up property-related disputes, be it commercial or family. “Apart from their traditional role of solving these cases, a number of individuals as well as companies are now hiring property lawyers to assist them in buying the right property,” explains Anil Harish, partner, DM Harish and Co.

Scope:

“A certificate of title is an important document that must be verified while buying property. Hence, apart from hiring a lawyer to deal with an ex isting case, a number of private as well as corporate firms are now seeking legal advice from property lawyers while investing in property related expenses, increasing their scope in India,” says Harish.

COUNSEL PRACTICE What is it?

Counsel practice is broadly equivalent to a barrister’s practice in the UK. The principal function or involvement of a counsel is to argue in court or appear as a `junior brief’ with other counsel.

Job role:

The job of a counsel is to advise, present in the court of law and to anticipate issues and estimate risks strategically.”Counsel do not have any direct client relationship and do not file their vakalatnama. They are `briefed’ by solicitor firms or advocates to appear in court, draft or advise in a particular matter. A counsel would also advise on litigation matters or on cases filed in the courtroom, if they are briefed or engaged to do so,” says Sharan Jagtiani, counsel, High Court of Bombay.

Scope:

The scope of a career in this specialisation is vast since counsel not only fight in court, but also act as legal advisors. A number of companies as well as individuals seek expert and strategic legal advice.

FAMILY LAW What is it?

Family law is a practice area that encompasses the legal issues that families face among themselves.

Job role:

Typically, a family lawyer takes up cases revolving around issues such as divorce -child custody, maintenance, guardianship, etc. “The lawyer acts as a medium between two families or a couple and plays a crucial role in mitigating the disputed issue. To make a career in this field, one must possess the skills of a litigator and negotiator. Time management skills are a must. Apart from arguing in court, a family lawyer also counsels clients on the issues they face before going to court,” shares Sudhir Reddy, founder, Reddy and Reddy.

Scope:

In India, the scope of family law is vast.An increasing number of marital as well as inter-family disputes has led to an increased demand for qualified family lawyers. “The most popular way to extenuate a dispute is mediation since most family issues are being settled without going through the procedure of a court of law. This has further increased the scope of family lawyers in India,” details Reddy.

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