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Legal Professions

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  1. All the verbs in the box relate to legal matters. Use them in the correct forms to complete the sentences.
  2. Macr; Legalese


(I) The legal profession traditionally is one of the most influential professions in all societies. A career as a lawyer can be challenging and rewarding. The law is constantly changing and each day brings new, usually unexpected challenge. The practice of law is by its nature a learning process. The learning continues every day as clients present new problems for lawyer to deal with. It takes years of long hard work and dedication to become a successful lawyer. The reward comes not only from good income but from doing a good job helping your client and seeing the justice is done.

(II) The most striking feature of the English legal system is the division of the legal profession into two separate branches: barristers and solicitors. These two kinds of lawyers do different jobs in the legal system. In the popular mind, the distinction between solicitors and barristers is that barristers do the court work and solicitors do the office work. In practice, the great amount of court work is done by solicitors, and barristers do much office work. Barristers provide a specialist consultancy and advocacy service. The majority of barristers work in private practice. They can also be employed by organizations including the Government Legal Service, the Crown Prosecution Service, industry, commerce and armed forces. Solicitors make up the largest branch of the legal profession in England. They provide comprehensive legal services including advice, preparation of documents, negotiation, representation in court, and work often performed by notaries in other countries. Solicitors are the first point of contact for the citizen, public authorities, business, other professions and foreign clients when looking for legal advice.

(III) * The American legal profession, like American law, has its roots in England, but with a significant difference. In the United States there is no division of the profession between office lawyers, known as solicitors, and courtroom lawyers, known as barristers. An American attorney frequently does both office work and courtroom work. As a result there is a great deal of variety in the types of work American lawyers perform. Depending on the situation and the needs of the client, the lawyer may be a counselor, a negotiator, and a litigator. As a counselor an attorney advises clients in their business and personal affairs. As a negotiator a lawyer works on behalf of his client with opposing counsel to get a favorable resolution for the client. A litigator assists clients with litigation in court preparing cases for trial and handling appeals. The lawyer is also an officer of the court and is required to deal fairly and honestly with the court and with other officers, including the lawyers’ opponents.

(IV) Lawyers have historically been active in the most important political and policy issues facing the nation. They are now active in a variety of legal movements including promoting social reform legislation, abolishing the death penalty; same-sex marriage rights and civil rights for gays; abortion and women’s rights, immigration law and international human rights. The legal profession will continue to play an important role in every issue society has to resolve. Lawyers may also pursue careers as civic and political leaders, judges, governmental officials, professors or business executives. Many lawyers work for public interest groups representing the poor, protecting the environment or defending peoples’ civil liberties. *


EXERCISE 3.Scan the text and find definition to these legal terms:

- Solicitor

- Barrister

- Litigator

- Counselor

- Negotiator


EXERCISE 4. Read the text and answer the following questions:

1. What makes a career as a lawyer challenging and rewarding?

2. What functions can barristers perform?

3. What types of work can solicitors do?

4. What functions can an American lawyer perform?

5. Why is legal profession one of the most influential professions in all societies?


EXERCISE 5. Read the text carefully and complete the sentences given below.

1. A career as a lawyer can be __________ and rewarding.

2. England is unique in having two types of lawyers: __________ and barristers.

3. Barristers provide a specialist consultancy and __________ service

4. Solicitors deal with preparation of documents, _________, representation in court.

5. An American attorney may be a counselor, a litigator and a _________.

6. A counselor can _________ clients in their business and personal affairs.

7. A negotiator works on behalf of his client to get ________ _________ for the client.

8. A litigator assists clients with __________ in court.

9. Lawyers are active in promoting social reform __________.

10. Legal profession plays an important role in every __________ society has to resolve.


EXERCISE 6. Using the paragraph reference given in brackets, find words in the text which have a similar meaning to:

- lawyer (II, III)

- problem, task, test (I)

- compensation, benefit, return (I)

- part, section, division (II)

- important, serious, vital (III)

- much, a lot of (III)

- carry out, do (III)

- question, issue, topic (III)

- help, serve (III)

- significant, vital, serious (IV)

- problem, question, affair (IV)

- decide, settle, solve (IV)


EXERCISE 7. Put the words into the right order (subject-verb-object) to make up sentences.

1. different, attorneys, American, functions, perform, may.

2. a division, the legal profession, there, of, England, in, is.

3. barristers, provided, service, specialist, by, and, consultancy, advocacy, is.

4. solicitors, preparation, are, documents, negotiations, with, concerned, of, and.

5. the lawyer, the court, an officer, is, of.


EXERCISE 8. Make up sentences using the following words and word combinations:

legal profession, advocacy, solicitor, barrister, attorney, lawyer, litigation, negotiate, counselor, legal task, legal advice, legal argument.


EXERCISE 9. Using the paragraph reference given in brackets, find in the text the English equivalents for these Russian legal terms and expressions.

- неожиданная задача, проблема (I)

- профессиональная консультация и адвокатские услуги (II)

- юридический совет (II)

- посредник, сторона в переговорах (III)

- от лица клиента (III)

- адвокат возражающей, противной стороны (III)

- положительное решение (III)

- судебный спор, процесс (III)

- заниматься апелляционными жалобами (III)

- служащий суда (III)

- вопросы политического характера и дальнейшего развития (IV)

- законодательство в области социальных реформ (IV)

- продолжать карьеру (IV)

- защищать гражданские свободы (IV)


EXERCISE 10. Translate the marked* passage of the text LEGAL PROFESSIONS into Russian.



EXERCISE 11. Read the text given below. Make up questions that may lead to further classroom discussion. Ask your questions to your classmates.


Paralegals are legal assistants. They perform many of the same legal tasks that lawyers can. Paralegals research cases, prepare briefs, legal arguments and assist at trials. Paralegals however cannot present cases in court or give legal advice. One of the paralegal’s most important tasks is helping lawyers prepare for hearings, trials and corporate meetings. Paralegals investigate the facts of the cases, identify appropriate laws, judicial decisions, legal articles and other materials that are relevant to assigned cases. After they analyze and organize the information, paralegals may prepare written reports that attorney use in determining how cases should be handled.


EXERCISE 12.Translate the given passage into English.

В США в каждом штате есть ассоциация адвокатов штата. Общенациональной организацией адвокатов является Американская ассоциация юристов. В задачи ассоциаций адвокатов входит установление норм профессиональной этики, разработка стандартов адвокатской деятельности, содействие совершенствованию права и процесса отправления правосудия и т.п.

В США адвокат может заниматься частной практикой или работать в составе адвокатских фирм. Часть адвокатов работает в ведомствах публичных защитников – организациях, состоящих на государственном бюджете и обслуживающих на бесплатной основе обвиняемых из числа неимущих граждан. В 1970-е годы в США появились адвокатские фирмы, деятельность которых заключается в защите интересов общества. Они не ведут дела отдельных клиентов, а выступают с исками против государства или корпораций, связанными с охраной прав и интересов крупных групп граждан (потребителей, политических активистов, избирателей, налогоплательщиков) или с охраной природы и охраной здоровья населения (например, иски против предприятий, загрязняющих окружающую среду, или против строительства атомных электростанций).


Американская ассоциация юристов – American Bar Association


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