5 Careers that Require Law School

If you’re considering attending law school, you may be wondering what you can do with a law degree. Or maybe you’re wondering what kind of salary options you have to pay off the cost of a law degree that you're about to receive after graduation. Well, look no further. Below are five career options that you can pursue after law school.

Prosecution or Defense Lawyer
If you’re interested in prosecution, criminal defense, or litigation, you may seek a job with a traditional law firm. Depending on the size of the firm, you may earn a starting salary that falls between $50,000 and $145,000 per year. After working several years for a firm, you could become a partner. A partner is basically a joint owner, meaning that you can receive bonuses and profit shares depending on your firm's performance.

Conflict-Resolution Mediator
A law degree can help you obtain a career as a mediator. Mediators resolve legal issues and conflicts outside the court room. A mediator can start out making $125 per hour, but experienced and skilled mediators can make as much as $450 per hour.

Development Agency or NGO Employee
A law degree can also help you serve the public interest by working for a development agency or a nongovernmental organization. You could be employed by charities, nonprofit organizations, educational agencies, or international programs. The average salary at an NGO is around $64,000 per year, although these figures can vary greatly depending on the organization.

Government Positions
It’s no secret that a law degree can be useful in government. Both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama earned law degrees. Working as a politician is another way to serve the public while also making more money than you would at most NGOs. If you work your way up into the House of Representatives or the Senate, you could make as much as $174,000 per year.

Finance Official
If the government sector doesn’t interest you, you could always consider banking or finance. A law degree can help you advise clients in real estate, tax, wealth management, or corporate finance. A recent graduate could potentially make $68,000 per year starting out in corporate finance law and eventually potentially earn as much as $145,000 per year.

Last Updated: June 16, 2017