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How do I Become a Construction Lawyer?

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  • Written By: Lainie Petersen
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 23 November 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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If you want to become a construction lawyer, you will need to complete the educational requirements for becoming an attorney in your area, become licensed as a lawyer, and then develop a specialized practice in construction law. While it is not required, you might find it easier to become a construction lawyer if you have some education, training, or experience in the construction industry. If you don't, you may want to participate in an internship while in law school that focuses on construction law, look for a job at a construction law firm, or pursue additional studies after you receive your law degree.

A construction lawyer may engage in the general practice of law with a focus on construction industry legal issues or may specialize in a relatively narrow field of construction law such as consumer protection or representing construction firms or vendors in litigation. Some construction attorneys may change their specialization and focus during the course of their career.

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In cases where you have not begun your legal education and are still working on an undergraduate degree, you may want to consider taking some courses in construction or engineering that may prove useful to you later on in your legal career. You may also wish to consider working jobs in the construction industry or perhaps even in the area of architecture. You will need to qualify for law school in the jurisdiction where you wish to practice law. In the United States, all states except California require you to complete your legal education at a law school that has been accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). Once you apply to and are accepted at a law school, you will need to complete your law degree before sitting for the bar exam.

While you are in law school, you may have the opportunity to complete courses in construction law or related topics. If you can get a job or an internship at a law office that deals with construction law, you may have an edge in your quest to become a construction lawyer. In some cases, it may be to your advantage to delay your plans to become a construction lawyer by taking further graduate work in the areas of construction, engineering, or architecture so as to add significant knowledge of the construction industry to your credentials. Once you begin to practice law, you can ask the partners in your firm to assign you to cases involving construction law so that you may gain more experience and eventually develop expertise in your chosen area of legal practice.

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