Whether you want to become a lawyer or you need to hire one, there are several options. Here are the different types of lawyers.

The Common Types of Lawyers: A Complete Guide

Are you thinking about hiring an attorney, but aren’t sure who to hire?

Just as there are different kinds of doctors, so too are there different types of lawyers. Figuring out which type of lawyer to hire is crucial for your case. Read this guide to learn about the different types of lawyers. 

1. Personal Injury Lawyer 

Personal injury lawyers specialize in tort litigation. They represent clients who are accusing others of causing injuries to them. Typically, these clients are seeking compensation for their medical bills, as well as compensation for emotional distress and ongoing medical care. 

Types of personal injury may include:

  • Medical malpractice
  • Assault and battery
  • Dog bites
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Burn accidents
  • Car accidents
  • Aviation or boating accidents

However, personal injury isn’t always physical. Defamation and libel also fall under the umbrella of personal injury. These include written or spoken words that cause harm to someone’s reputation. A disability attorney may also help with personal injury lawsuits. 

2. Estate Planning Lawyer 

Whether you’re a multimillionaire or just have a few thousand dollars in the bank, it’s important that you plan out your estate so your loved ones are taken care of after your death. 

Estate planning lawyers (also known as probate lawyers) specialize in the execution of wills and trusts. These lawyers are typically responsible for setting up a trust for their client that will cover the client’s family and beneficiaries. 

Estate planning lawyers also provide counsel on life insurance, retirement plans, and charitable contributions. If you’re married and you pass away, all of your money will automatically go to your spouse if you don’t set up an estate plan. If you’re the last remaining spouse alive, all of your estate will be equally split up amongst your children. 

If you’d like to handle your estate differently (for example, maybe you want to ensure some money goes to charity), then you need to hire an estate planning lawyer. 

3. Toxic Tort Lawyer 

A toxic tort lawyer is responsible for helping victims who have been exposed to hazardous chemicals. They work to negotiate settlements on behalf of their clients in cases associated with defective products, chemicals, or drugs. 

While this sometimes falls under the umbrella of personal injury, a toxic tort lawyer has more specialized knowledge. 

4. Intellectual Property Lawyer 

Intellectual property refers to any creation of the mind. This may include an invention, music, design, symbol, or another type of artistic work. 

The three main areas of intellectual property law include patents, trademarks, and copyrights. Often, you don’t need to copyright a work of art for it to be your intellectual property. This means that if someone steals your idea and uses it as their own, you may have the right to sue. 

Or, if you invent something and want to prevent others from copying the invention, you’ll need to file a patent. Patent law and other intellectual property laws can be very complicated, which is why hiring an intellectual property lawyer is of the utmost importance. 

5. Bankruptcy Lawyer

Over 1.5 million people file for bankruptcy every year. Bankruptcy can happen to anybody, regardless of their financial situation. 

When hiring a bankruptcy lawyer, you’ll receive counsel on the best type of bankruptcy to file for your specific situation. Filing bankruptcy for your business will look much different than filing personal bankruptcy. 

In addition to representing individuals, bankruptcy lawyers also represent corporate debtors and creditors. 

6. Corporate Lawyer 

Corporate lawyers often work in-house for a large corporation. Big companies like McDonald’s, Nike, and Microsoft all have corporate lawyers at the ready. 

Not only are corporate lawyers responsible for handling lawsuits against a company, but they’re also responsible for making sure the corporation stays in sound legal standing. Some of the responsibilities of a corporate lawyer may include:

  • Developing company policies
  • Creating plans for when legal issues arise
  • Researching and guarding companies against legal risk
  • Negotiating deals and attending company meetings
  • Structuring and drafting legal documents

In addition to representing large corporations, some of these lawyers also represent small businesses. If you plan to start a small business, a lawyer can help ensure your business is in compliance with the applicable business regulations. 

7. Real Estate Lawyer 

Real estate lawyers are not to be confused with real estate agents, as they have very different roles. Real estate agents help with the. buying and selling of property. On the other hand, a real estate lawyer is responsible for counsel on real estate transactions. 

They’re responsible for preparing and reviewing paperwork involved in the buying and selling of property. They may represent the buyer or the seller at closing. 

8. Immigration Lawyer 

Immigration lawyers are responsible for a range of issues related to immigration status. They help people file green cards, apply for citizenship, and apply for work visas. 

They also help with refugee status, political asylum, and deportation. They may also help foreign companies establish business registration. If you plan to move to another country or work abroad, you’ll need to hire an immigration lawyer. 

9. Family and Divorce Lawyers 

Family and divorce lawyers counsel clients on divorces, separations, child custody, child support, and the division of assets. Even if you’re going through an amicable divorce, it’s still important to hire this type of lawyer to help you with the paperwork. 

Family and divorce lawyers can also help with the adoption process. 

Types of Lawyers: Time to Hire 

Now that you know about the different types of lawyers, it’s time to hire the right lawyer for your needs. With the right legal representation, you have a much better chance of winning your case. 

Check back in with our blog for more guides like this one. 

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