Becoming a Lawyer
What is a solicitor and what do they do?
A solicitor is usually the first point of contact for a person seeking legal advice and assistance.
Some common tasks undertaken by solicitors include:
- Drafting documents including wills, contracts and conveyancing
- Legal advice – business
- Resolving legal disputes
- Advising clients facing criminal charges
- Advising clients involved in a lawsuit
What is a barrister and what do they do?
A barrister generally receives work by referral from a solicitor. The barrister is the person who will represent a client in court.
- Have a sound knowledge of the rules of evidence and procedure.
- Are able to determine the appropriate strategy and arguments to be presented in court.
- Question witnesses.
- Can “lead” evidence and cross-examine witnesses called by the other side.
- Make submissions on points of law during the course of a trial.
- Prepare draft pleadings in non-criminal cases.
- Negotiate settlements to discontinue legal proceedings.
Solicitors are generally required to work long hours. Income varies depending on:
- The nature of the work.
- The ability of the solicitor.
- The seniority of the solicitor.
- Their place of employment.
Becoming a Lawyer in Tasmania
There are no pre-tertiary required subjects for entry to the law degree.
Undergradutate law at the University of Tasmania
The University of Tasmania offers the straight law degree (4 years full-time) and six combined law degrees with the courses Arts, Business, Economics, Information Systems, Science and Computing (5 years full-time).
To be eligible to apply for a place in the law degree an applicant must satisfy one of the three criteria below:
- to be qualified for University entry with a TER score of 90 or above (limited places available in this entry category); or
- a first year in another faculty, which includes the units LAW121 Introduction to Law and LAW122 Legal Systems (or the academic equivalent) and achieve the Grade Point Average cut-off score; or
- a bachelor degree, and achieve the Grade Point Average cut-off score.
Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice at the University of Tasmania
A 6 month practical legal training course is then required to be eligible for admission as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Tasmania.