Despite the fact that over a half of law school graduates are women, only about 35% of top-lawyers in leading firms are female (Law360). And while some law firms are rather welcoming of female professionals, this isn’t a staple for the industry yet. However, being a lawyer isn’t the only kind of legal career available to a working mother. You can succeed in a variety of other specialties ranging from paralegals to forensic investigators. The things that are common for the majority of these options are that they are male-dominated and can be rather stressful. This means that a mom who wants to work in the legal field needs to know a few tricks to succeed in it.
Top 5 Legal Careers for Working Mothers
Being a lawyer is both demanding and fulfilling. The job also brings quite a good salary and today working moms have quite a few good options available in this profession. Passing the bar exam is a must if you choose to proceed with this career. You’ll also have to keep your skills and license up to date. This means professional training and taking occasional courses to improve your qualifications.
Staying at the top of your game and keeping up with the tiniest changes in the field are essential requirements for a lawyer’s success. As this is a heavily male-dominated industry, you’ll have to work even harder to keep your skills sharp and in high demand.
Lawyers have a multitude of professional options available, which makes it easier for you to succeed. To maximize your chances, you need to pick the right kind of law and specialization for you. As a true master of a narrow legal field, you can get recognition and build a reputation that’s essential for progress in the industry.
This career is a great choice for working moms in particular because it allows a lot of flexibility. You can negotiate working part-time, do most of the work from home, or completely focus on practicing law over the Internet.
2. Legal Assistant
If you don’t become an attorney but this is the kind of work you are most interested in, you should consider being a legal assistant. This profession also offers some flexibility, but you’ll need to negotiate the exact terms with your employer.
This career mostly involves working with paperwork and research. To succeed in the field you’ll need to be highly organized, efficient, and precise. A good legal assistant also has to be proactive. This is the kind of job where the discoveries you make when pursuing various leads can make a difference. Thus, you’ll need to learn how to find those leads.
You will also need to work closely with the attorney. Thus, good communication skills are a must.
3. Computer Forensics Investigator
A computer forensics investigator is a good career choice today because this profession is in high demand. As the world gets more digital, the level of computer crimes skyrockets. Thus, the demand for professionals grows.
As a legal career for a working mom, this choice might be good because the job has few physical demands. As you’ll be working within a digital laboratory most of the time, you should be able to keep reasonable hours.
However, this type of profession can be stressful, as all work in law enforcement is. The job often demands immediate results and ability for quick problem resolution. To succeed you have to be creative and highly skilled. As cyber criminals evolve constantly, so have you. This is a career best suited for people who are truly in-tune with tech and stay on top of all advancements in the field.
A paralegal isn’t an attorney yet, but this profession is usually more demanding than that of a legal assistant. Note that some firms require their assistants to be certified paralegals. All in all, the professional role is nearly the same.
Therefore, to shine as a paralegal you need to be highly organized and efficient. It’s essential to be very good and quick in handling different types of legal paperwork. Being able to work through it fast will up your professional value on the market.
5. Social Worker
If you are a compassionate person invested in making the lives of people better, being a social worker might be the perfect choice. This career is extremely versatile and you can progress in it by acquiring additional skills. For example, you can get training in dealing with trauma to help people through both their legal and psychological issues.
There is a multitude of options and the most important factor for success is dedication to the work. Being a social worker can be emotionally exhausting because you will be helping many people through extremely stressful situations. However, because of this, the job can be exceptionally fulfilling.
You can also turn your social work into an independent business by starting a non-profit or even just launching a blog.
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