The most misunderstood profession is that of the lawyer. Although people now have access to more information than ever before and are better informed about their legal rights, there are still many misconceptions about lawyers.
The following are some common myths about lawyers that are untrue.
Lawyers are Rich
The common misconception about lawyers is that they are rich and greedy. In reality, most lawyers are not rich. They have a reputation for being wealthy because their education costs so much money — but after you pay your bills, there’s not much left over.
In fact, many law students have debt that takes years to pay off after graduation. That’s because they had to pay tuition during school in addition to paying rent on an apartment or house during their time there (and this doesn’t even include room and board). And once you get out into the workforce as a new lawyer, you need to keep paying those student loans.
All Lawyers Work in Law Firms
Another misconception is that all lawyers work in law firms. While many do, there are many other options for a lawyer to choose from. Lawyers can work in private practice, in-house, or government positions and have a wide range of responsibilities related to the law. Beyond representing clients in court or serving as a consultant on legal matters, there is a wide range of legal occupations available. For example, some lawyers choose criminal justice as their profession while others may go into family law or civil litigation.
If a Criminal Lawyer Takes on a Case Where Their Client is Guilty, They Are Assisting a Crime
It’s a common myth that lawyers must prove their client’s innocence, but this is not true. Despite the vast majority of criminal cases being based on circumstantial evidence, criminal lawyers don’t have to prove that their client is innocent.
In fact, they aren’t even required to believe their client is innocent. Their job is simply to present the strongest case possible for the defense.
Lawyers Only Care About The Case and Not the Person
It is a misconception that lawyers are only interested in the case and not the person. Lawyers are human beings with feelings, families, and emotions just like everyone else. They have been trained to look at things from an objective perspective to better serve their clients, but they don’t lose sight of who they are as people or what their own values are. This can be difficult for some people to understand because there is so much negativity surrounding lawyers today, but these stereotypes shouldn’t prevent you from seeing why being represented by a lawyer can be beneficial for your case.
Attorneys Speak in Legal Jargon and are Hard to Understand
Many people think that lawyers speak in legal jargon and that it is difficult to understand. This is not always the case. Many legal terms are actually quite common and easy to understand if you know what they mean. For example, if you are on trial for murder and your lawyer says he plans to “plead guilty,” that means he will admit that you did it. If you have a contract with someone and they break the agreement by failing to do something they promised in the contract, they’ve breached it — this is called a breach of contract (or breach). Similarly, if someone sues you because they believe your product harmed them in some way or violated their rights under the law (e.g., copyright or patent), then a lawsuit has been filed against you — and won’t end unless your attorneys convince them otherwise.
Solicitors Don’t Necessarily go to the Courtroom
You might think that solicitors are the ones who go to court, but they don’t necessarily have to. A solicitor is the first point of contact for clients, so they’re trained to deal with clients and even the court system itself — if necessary. However, most solicitors will not be required to go into a courtroom during their career because their job is primarily behind-the-scenes work. That being said, there are some circumstances where a solicitor should appear in court (for example, if their client requested it).
It Costs a Lot of Money to Hire a Lawyer
Contrary to what many people believe, hiring a lawyer does not necessarily mean that you will be spending a lot of money. While it may be true in some circumstances, for many people, it’s not. The cost of hiring a lawyer will depend on the type of case and its complexity. The main reason so many people think lawyers are expensive is that they do not understand how lawyers charge for their services. Lawyers can bill in any number of ways and depending on your particular situation, there might be options that work better for you than others.
The most common way to charge for legal help is on an hourly basis. In this scenario, the lawyer charges a set amount per hour (or fraction thereof) they spend working on your case. In exchange for this fee, you get all the expert advice and guidance from someone who knows the law inside and out — and who can provide counsel as needed throughout your case.
Lawyers are Manipulative
Another misconception about lawyers and one of the main reasons people are afraid to hire one is that they think lawyers are manipulative. The truth is that lawyers are trained to think logically, strategically, and critically. This means that when you hire a lawyer, they will approach your case from all angles and help you understand the best course of action for your situation. They know how to argue effectively, which makes them able to talk with opposing attorneys in court while also keeping their cool under pressure.
Good Lawyers Can Win Every Case
The reality is that not every case is winnable. Some cases are not worth pursuing, either because of the law or because of the client’s personal situation. Other cases may be unwinnable because of the facts in the dispute or even because of how you’ve chosen to go about your defense. While it’s true that lawyers often make arguments and take actions that appear to be successful on their face, there are many factors at play in any case beyond what appears on paper or in court transcripts. For example, you may seek damages for an injury caused by someone else’s negligence but find yourself unable to prevail due to evidence showing that they had no way around causing harm while fulfilling their duties or obligations.
It could also happen that no matter how hard you try there just isn’t enough evidence available against someone who did something bad enough for them warranting some sort of punishment from society as a whole.
You might think that lawyers are rich and live in fancy houses. You might also think that they spend all day in court, arguing with each other. While it’s true that some lawyers do own nice homes and make a lot of money, most earn a salary rather than hourly wages. And while some do practice law outside of firms, many still work at firms like the one where you currently work or the one where you want to work someday.
These were the common misconceptions about lawyers and knowing the truth can help you understand what to expect from your legal experience.