What Is Required to Be A Criminal Defense Lawyer
The Journey to Be A Criminal Defense Lawyer
Know the process of becoming a lawyer
A criminal defense lawyer is a highly trained professional. A competent defense attorney is an absolute must for a person accused of crimes to be able to fight the charges. Criminal law is extremely complex, and requires extensive training. The US Constitution guarantees citizens the right to legal representation, so this is an important profession.
The most important part of an attorney’s education is attending and graduating from an accredited law program. Accreditation for a law school means recognition by the American Bar Association that it has the resources and personnel to train law students. Accreditation is a thorough process that assesses resources such as libraries, classroom space, the credentials of teaching and other staff, and the success of its graduates over time.
To get into a law program, applicants must have graduated from an accredited college or university with a BA or BS degree. No particular degree is requires, but commonly people wanting to go on the law school major in fields such as psychology or political science. Competition for admission into law school is fierce, and successful applicants will have good grades and excellent recommendations from teachers. Admission into law programs is partly determined by good scores on the LSAT, the Law School Admission Test. The LSAT is quite difficult. It tests reading comprehension, logic and analytical reasoning, all skills important to practicing attorneys.
The law programs are usually three years, with a JD (Juris Doctor) awarded upon graduation. The JD is a professional credential on the same level as an MD or PhD. Law programs are difficult. All attorneys have core courses in common, but a person interested in criminal law will take related courses. Internships are important. These may be a judicial internship with a judge, or an internship with a public defender’s office.
There is another step after successfully completing the program. An attorney must pass the bar exam in the state in which he or she intends to practice. The bar exam assesses whether a candidate is qualified. Becoming a lawyer requires a commitment to academics and a strategy to better your test taking skills. Visit here for a look at one of the best criminal defense firms in Miami, and see what you could be getting into.