How to Become a Lawyer in Australia – Every Single Step
Every Single Step to Becoming a Lawyer in Australia
“How can I become a lawyer in Australia?” It’s a common question among students and parents. So what’s the answer? Becoming a lawyer in Australia is a long journey, starting with high school subject selection. If you’re interested in pursuing a legal career, you’ll need to plan ahead for success.
Simple Steps to Becoming a Lawyer in Australia
Law is a complex industry, which means that there are a range of different entry pathways and career outcomes. Here’s how to get started.
- Choose the right high school subjects.
- Take part in law-adjacent extracurricular activities.
- Achieve a high ATAR score (What is the ATAR score for Law?).
- Obtain entry to a Bachelor of Law program at an Australian university.
- Graduate with minimum pass requirements.
- Complete Practical Legal Training (PLT).
- Apply for admission to practice.
- Apply for an Australian practising certificate from your local law society.
- Complete supervised practice at a reputable law firm.
- Commit to ongoing professional development.
What Kind of Law Interests You?
There are many ways to pursue a legal career. It’s important to choose the avenue that is right for you.
A family lawyer focuses on family and domestic cases—matters like child custody disputes, pre-nuptial agreements, and litigation.
A criminal lawyer deals with law-breaking and criminal activity, with cases ranging from burglary to drug trafficking, assault, and murder.
A corporate lawyer works with business and companies, often dealing with negotiation, drafting, business plans, and corporate disputes.
Alternatively, you might be interested in estate planning, which involves drawing up wills and trusts; civil litigation, which involves civil matters like lawsuits and suing; or general practice, which allows legal professionals to deal with a wide range of relatively simple cases and issues.
Sit down with your child and have a discussion about what the future holds and which legal fields interest them. Talk about what it will take to achieve a Bachelor of Law. Investigate the entry pathways and prerequisites relevant to your state and the university your child is interested in attending.
Preparing at School
Planning for a legal career begins in school with the subjects you choose to study. Ideally, it’s best to start preparing as soon as possible—as early as primary or early high school. But if your child is a little later in deciding to pursue law, there is time to catch up with hard work and determination.
In order to qualify for advanced ATAR classes, your child will need to perform well in junior-level studies, working to build a strong foundation in all core subjects and some speciality areas. If your child is struggling to keep up with difficult skills and concepts, don’t despair. Speak to a tutor who can support them to achieve their academic goals and obtain the results they need to get into higher-level classes.
Some universities avoid setting prerequisite subjects for law degrees, while others ask students to have completed ATAR courses in law-related areas.
Depending on the type of law your child plans on pursuing, different subjects might help them on their way. However, as a general guide for ATAR subjects that may support a Bachelor of Law application, your child should consider studying such courses as ATAR English, maths, history, economics, business, geography, and legal studies. The skills they learn in these classes will offer a strong foundation for first-year university studies.
Keeping up with a long list of complex ATAR subjects can be a challenge. If your child finds it difficult to stay on top of their workload or understand assessment requirements, it’s a good idea to seek the support of a professional tutor to help explain unfamiliar concepts and construct a study plan.
Supporting Your Child
A strong support network is an important part of preparing your child for success when it comes to pursuing a law career. Help your child manage their time effectively and get the most out of their study. Encourage your child to chase their dreams and work hard at school.
If you’re finding it difficult to help your child, talk to us. We can help children apply themselves academically and work hard to obtain entry to a Bachelor of Law degree.