Trial Lawyer

Argue court cases in front of a jury and Judge.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$75,000 – $165,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Trial Lawyers do?

Did you ever watch Perry Mason? If so, you’ve seen the face of a Trial Lawyer. Well, of course the smoky good looks and dramatic dialogue are Hollywood’s contributions. Even so, a real courtroom can be an exciting place too—jurors hanging on every word, a Judge scribbling notes, the sweaty-palmed witness following the Lawyer with her eyes, and a room full of people anticipating an outcome.

As a Trial Lawyer, you’re the one who presents the facts of your client’s case to the jury and Judge. This could be on the side of the prosecution or the defense, and you could handle both criminal or civil cases. Typical cases for a Trial Lawyer include Landlord -tenant disputes, theft, domestic disputes, breach of contract, and personal injury on the job or through car accidents.

Whether you’re on the side of the defense or prosecution, your job is to work towards the best outcome for your client. That means you insure payment from or punishment for the accused, if you’re the Prosecutor. If you’re the Defense Lawyer, you strive to earn an innocent verdict or tangible reward for your client.

Your client looks to you for guidance through the stressful trial process. You interview, console, inform, and educate them. Additionally, you research case law, prepare court documents, send correspondence to the courts and other Lawyers, formulate a strategy, and appear in court to present the facts. The whole process can take anywhere from a couple of months to several years to complete.

Should I be a Trial Lawyer?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • How to become a Trial Lawyer

    Most Trial Lawyers have a Doctorate or a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaaf9&chl=||||master%27s+%288%25%29|doctorate+%2892%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,92
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