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Career

Corporate Lawyer

Corporate lawyers advise and represent corporations on legal issues relating to areas such as tax, contracts, patents, employee rights and claims and insurance. They also manage the legal aspects of commercial transactions, handle negotiations and conflict resolution. Their role is not only to protect their client when legal complications such as suits arise, but to keep their client up to date with relevant laws and legislation and to anticipate and act on potential problems. Corporate lawyers may work from a firm and take on multiple clients or may be employed solely by one organisation becoming an in-house counsel. They are well paid and often have the potential to earn bonuses, however they work long hours in a high pressure and competitive environment. The title "corporate lawyer" usually refers to someone with extensive expertise, experience and seniority. Graduates interested in this area of law can improve job opportunities by tailoring their studies towards areas such as business, commercial and tax law and by gaining work experience/employment with relevant firms.

Many corporate law firms offer summer clerkships to students in their penultimate year, with students working full-time over summer and then part-time one day a week in their final year.  Frequently gaining a summer clerkship with a corporate law firm is the only way to gain graduate entry into the firm. Securing a corporate law job is very competitive and firms will hire clerks who have already proven themselves.  Clerkship job applications usually close mid-year.  Engaging in extra-curricular activities, such as volunteering, participating in legal competitions or working within a Law Student Association can assist students in the competitive job process.