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How Do I Become a Corporate Litigator?

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  • Written By: A.M. Boyle
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2016
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A corporate litigator is basically a lawyer who specializes in two areas of law, namely, corporate law and litigation. To become a corporate litigator, you must first obtain a bachelor’s degree from a college or university. Then, you need to obtain your law degree, otherwise known as a juris doctorate, usually by attending three years of law school. During law school, you should focus your areas of study on corporate law and litigation. After law school, when you obtain your license to practice, you should seek a position in a law firm specializing in corporate litigation so that you can obtain necessary experience in that field.

Many colleges and universities offer flexible pre-law majors that allow you to gear your studies toward your intended area of practice. If you are hoping to become a corporate litigator, consider focusing your undergraduate studies in that area. For instance, you could take classes in business and corporate structure or intellectual property. Once you’ve obtained your four-year degree, your next step is law school.

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is the exam you must pass in order to be admitted to law school. The LSAT requires a lot of preparation and training, and the higher your score, the better your chance of getting into the law school of your choice. Generally, law school requires the completion of three years of study to obtain your law degree, called a juris doctorate.

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Depending upon the law school you attend, you will typically have the opportunity to gear your studies toward the area of practice you are interested in. If you wish to become a corporate litigator, you should take courses that focus on all aspects of corporate law, such as stockholder issues, trademark protection, intellectual property, and regulatory compliance. You should also take classes relative to litigation, such as trial law, evidence, and court procedure.

Once you graduate law school, to obtain your attorney’s license, you will generally need to pass a specific exam, called a bar exam, for each jurisdiction where you wish to practice. If you hope to become a corporate litigator, you should seek employment with a law firm that specializes in that area of practice. Generally, one of best ways to obtain the specialized knowledge necessary to become a savvy corporate litigator is through mentorship and working side by side with others lawyers who have that experience.

Some jurisdictions provide opportunities for trial lawyers to become certified. A certification basically allows an attorney to be recognized as a specialist in the field of litigation. Generally, to obtain this type of certification, you must have been admitted to the bar for a minimum number of years and have completed a minimum number of trials. You will also need to provide professional references and pass a challenging written exam. Having a trial certification, though, can prove very useful if you are hoping to become a corporate litigator who is successful and well recognized in the field.

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