Many people have the perception that legal professions offer outstanding job security and abundant opportunities. If you're considering one of the legal occupations as your possible new career path, perhaps you're wondering if these assumptions hold true right now. Let's discuss the future employment outlook for the professionals who work hard to make the US legal system function.
While the employment outlook for employment in the legal field is positive, growth projections for the immediate future are not particularly impressive. Experts at the US Bureau of Labor Statistics believe that US employers are likely to add about 5 percent more legal jobs to the nation's economy by the year 2024. This percentage keeps pace with the rate of growth they're forecasting for the rest of the US economy.
It's a tough time to be a lawyer. While the US population has a perpetual need for talented lawyers, there are more aspiring attorneys than there is work for professionals who provide legal counsel. US law schools are granting degrees at a rate of pace higher than the US economy is adding new employment positons for attorneys. There's also a recent trend towards outsourcing routine legal work to lower-paid paralegals or even to legal experts located in countries where labor costs are lower. This results in fierce competition for worthwhile available work.
The predicted growth rate for attorney jobs is only about 6 percent, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
There's also downward pressure on attorneys' paychecks as people look for other ways to cut their legal expenses. Corporations with significant legal needs are hiring their own in-house legal teams and dictating lower rates of pay. Thanks to this trend, it is likely that increasing numbers of attorneys will need to seek work at corporate organizations in industries such as healthcare, finance, insurance, media and information services.
Law firms are likely to remain the most probable source of employment for attorneys in the immediate future. The US government is another possible employer. Temp agencies are a possible source of work experience for aspiring attorneys or new graduates who need to build their resumes.
The Employment Outlook for Paralegals
In the USA, new jobs for legal assistants are likely to become available at a rate of about 8 percent through the year 2024. Experts at the US Department of Labor are predicting significant levels of competition for the available jobs in this niche. They advise prospective candidates to obtain formal training and to build their computer skills; expertise with database management is of particular importance to candidates seeking employment in this line of work.
The Employment Outlook for Judges
The employment outlook for aspiring new judges is not enticing. Up until the year 2024, experts at the US Department of Labor do not expect to see any substantial change in the number of judges that will be needed in the United States. There's likely to be fierce competition for the job openings that do arise when current judges retire from their jobs.
We hope this information gives you a clearer understanding of what the future holds for professionals working in the legal field. If you're considering a career in any of these legal professions, you're now better informed about what to expect — and better equipped to make a decision about whether one of these occupations could be right for you.