Structure of a Legal Profession in the USA

 By: Andrew Andreeff
In the USA is (all data in a note -- on the end of 1990th years) about 986 thousand lawyers, the overwhelming which majority have passed the admission in legal profession and hold a patent the lawyer -- a necessary condition for any form of practical activities of the lawyer; only for scientifically-teaching work there is no necessity for the lawyer patent though many lawyers-scientists in the beginning of the career prefer to undergo admission procedure in legal profession on a case of transition to practical work.

All legal estate can be broken into three categories: the lawyers-experts which are engaged in work, directly connected with the right; persons with the diploma of the lawyer, carrying out functions, it is direct with the right not connected; the lawyers who are engaged in scientifically -- teaching activity.

From the first category of lawyers the largest professional group -- privately practicing lawyers; them in the USA more than 700 thousand persons.

Legal advisers of the corporations which are regular employees getting wages of legal services of enterprise units are allocated by all powers of lawyers; they make more than 10 % from total number of lawyers. Many public organizations with the corporation status, that is the legal person have the lawyers also. For example, wide popularity in business of protection of the rights of black citizens was received by Legal fund of National association of assistance to development of the black population. Being originally legal consultation service of this public organization, the fund has extended and nowadays occupies independent position in relation to it.

The big group lawyers of official bodies -- regular employees legal consultation services of departments of executive power, administrative agencies, local authorities, a legislature, and also employees and heads of bodies state form charges, lawyers of departments "public defenders" which activity is paid from the state budget. Police officers and bodies the investigations even having the diploma of the lawyer, under the standards accepted in the American legal estate, are not considered as lawyers though workers of their legal services (in FBI, for example, is own legal consultation department) are considered as lawyers. The largest state "legal firm" is the Ministry of Justice, managed "the main lawyer" the governments -- general °тт¾р½ее¼ the USA. In total in public service the lawyers making 15 % from all number of lawyers, that is the persons who are holding a patent and powers of the lawyer (from them one third -- in the federal ministries and departments) work.

The separate segment in group of the lawyers who are engaged in practical activities, is made by judges. On judicial posts lawyers from among the persons having practical experience of legal work in legal profession, business, legal services of the state departments, bodies of the state charge, or from among skilled and authoritative professors of the right come. Federal judges 1200 persons, judges of states and local -- about 30 thousand are nearby.

In system of military justice it is occupied about 4 thousand lawyers.

The second category of lawyers -- the persons who departed from legal practice or a science and have selected business or the policy, -- does not give in to the statistical description. However it is possible to cite the following data eloquently testifying to a sociopolitical role of owners of the diploma of the lawyer in the USA. From 42 US presidents 25 were lawyers; in particular, lawyers by a trade were A.Linkoln, F.D.Roosevelt, G.Truman, R.Nixon, B.Clinton. 2/3 senators and almost half of members of the House of Representatives of the Congress of the USA -- lawyers. Owners of the diploma of the lawyer are half of governors of states and 40 % of diplomats. About 45 % of the persons occupying since 60th years the higher posts in the government, were lawyers, and more than 25 % have come to machinery of state directly from lawyer offices.

The third category of lawyers -- the persons who are engaged in scientifically-teaching work. The number of teachers of the right working in 181 officially recognised educational institution, makes 5395 persons. Besides, in combination teach legal disciplines of 4000 lawyers.

The person who has ended a legal educational institution, usually, if does not choose to itself at once the academic career, begins work in legal profession or in court as the clerk (the reviewer, the assistant) judges or in the device of legal services, charge bodies on younger posts.

Rigid partitions in groups of the lawyers directing the person only on one path, does not exist: for legal estate of the USA high rotation and mobility are characteristic. Transition from private lawyer practice on public service and back -- the phenomenon extended. Often enough for the state work lawyers-scientists are involved. Judges usually steal up from among politically active and skilled lawyers. Many accusers become judges though practice shows that district °тт¾р½еев lawyers consider posts as a springboard in a policy, on high elective offices. Lawyers of corporations quite often devote themselves to enterprise activity entirely. More and more the American corporations put forward on supervising posts of the lawyers; in many corporations the main legal advisers on a post are executive vice-presidents.

The lawyers serving corporations, or the lawyers directly serving in corporation, willingly invite to the state work in administrative regulating departments. After certain term of work in these departments they come back to supervising posts in corporation.

In legal estate of the most prestigious work of the judge (especially federal, on a lifelong post) is considered; slightly more low, from the point of view of social prestige, lawyers of corporations and lawyers-scientists (the professor of the right) settle down; further there are the lawyers working in administrative departments, and employees state services. The group of lawyers-politicians costs independently. Its "cumulative" prestige is measured by political success of the separate figures who have reached of heights in the state and the politician.
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