Common Misconceptions Regarding Lawyers In Surrey
Despite the fact that the average person believes they have a thorough understanding of the way the legal system works, the truth is that nearly 50% of the most commonly repeated statements regarding the legal profession and lawyers in Surrey are truly nothing more than widespread myths. In fact, many of these statements have absolutely no base of fact, and could even be considered down right lies. This is why I wanted to take a few minutes to clear up some of the most common misconceptions regarding lawyers in Surrey by helping you to separate the myths from the facts.
Myth: The starting salary for a lawyer is over one hundred thousand dollars.
Fact: The average first year associate will only make about forty thousand dollars. This is the same salary as many other professions including teachers, nurses, paralegals, and engineers. The higher salaries which are often associated with lawyers in Surrey are reserved for veteran attorneys who have secured the loyalty of many successful clients.
Myth: The average lawyer works in a large firm which consists of at least 10 other lawyers competing for cases.
Fact: While this myth has made for very good television over the years, the fact is that the average law firm only consists of 3 lawyers. In fact, nearly 25% of all lawyers in Surrey are sole practitioners. This means that there are absolutely no other practicing lawyers in their law firm. Instead, these lawyers will typically hire a paralegal or legal secretary to help keep their office running.
Myth: Pro Bono work is something that only some lawyers choose to do, and then only on a very limited basis.
Fact: Each and every member of the bar association completes Pro Bono work each and every year. In fact, this is one of the requirements set forth by the bar in order for a lawyer to maintain their law license. In order to ensure that each lawyer lives up to this requirement, the bar association performs random audits throughout the year in order to check on each lawyer’s Pro Bono status. When a lawyer is selected for this audit they will need to provide the bar with proof of all their Pro Bono work for the last five years. A failure to produce this documentation could result in a variety of disciplinary actions from increasing the lawyer’s personal Pro Bono requirements all the way up to a suspension or revocation of the lawyer’s law license.
Myth: The reason the court system is currently so overwhelmed is that lawyers often file frivolous lawsuits in order to punish individuals and corporations for wronging them in some way.
Fact: Trial attorneys are often paid on a contingency basis. This means that the only way these lawyers actually receive payment for their services is if they are able to successfully prosecute their case. In order to accomplish this goal the case will need to have merit. Therefore, filing frivolous lawsuits is actually quite counterproductive for any trial attorney. Furthermore, trial attorneys successfully settle about 85% of their cases outside of the courtroom. This means that nearly every case these lawyers handle will never make its way on to a court docket.
Myth: A lawyer has to specialize in just one area of the law in order to provide you with adequate representation.
Fact: Many people believe that a lawyer has to specialize in a particular legal problem in order to offer effective advice concerning that problem. The fact is, however, all lawyers in Surrey are required to take the exact same courses during their law school education. Furthermore, all of these lawyers will be required to prove their competency in all areas of the law in order to pass the bar exam.
Filed under General Law Topics by Terry