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The advantages that lawyers enjoy are varied. In addition to the obvious benefit (in many cases) of a solid financial foundation, lawyers enjoy the prestige that comes from undergoing an intense educational path. Lawyers enjoy the advantage of acquiring such diverse skills as negotiation tactics, as well as building up their communication abilities.
The financial advantages of being a lawyer are significant. There is some difference in geographic location, however. A criminal attorney who practices out of Nashville, Tennessee earns about $90,000, while a criminal attorney out of Dallas, Texas has an average salary of $123,000.
Lawyers have the advantage of being able to choose their area of expertise. While some attorneys might enjoy the moral stance of being a public defender, others might enjoy the financial rewards of working in private practice. In addition, lawyers enjoy being able to take their knowledge of the law and move into other areas, such as consulting. Other lawyers have used their law background in order to branch out into entrepreneurial enterprises.
Public defenders assist citizens that require legal representation but cannot afford it. They provide a service to a demographic that contributes to a more equal society. Aside from public defenders, many lawyers contribute or are required to contribute "pro bono" work, which are law services that are provided at no cost to the client.
Practicing law is a demanding career. One of the biggest drawbacks comes in terms of the amount of time spent working. For some firms that have requirements for the amount of billable hours that must be achieved, there are lawyers that have to work from 8 in the morning until 8 at night. In addition to that, those lawyers may work a 7-hour day two Saturdays a moth.