19 Sep Attorney-Lawyer-Solicitor-AR
What does a solicitor do?
As a matter of fact, the majority of legal practitioners, approximately
90 percent, are solicitors. Attorney-Lawyer-Solicitor-AR
To begin with, a solicitor is the first ‘port of call’ for those seeking legal advice or assistance. Although most people turn to a solicitor
if they have a legal problem, there are many other areas
of life where solicitors are able to offer legal advice and
guidance. For example, property transactions or disputes,
drafting a will, or family issues and domestic relations.
Generally, solicitors deal with any legal matter but may
engage a barrister to perform advocacy in court. Attorney-Lawyer-Solicitor-AR
In addition, solicitors are highly trained professionals who can guide
you through difficult circumstances and are looking after
your best interests. Moreover, they understand the complexities
and the consequences of the law and can often find better
alternatives which you may not have considered.
When should I see a solicitor?
Indeed, this is a common question. Therefore, below are some general rules of thumb. However, please be aware there are many other situations that may call for legal advice.
For instance, you should see a solicitor when preparing or before signing a legal document (e.g. a contract). Also, in order to prepare a will or to buy or sell a home.
On the other hand, a solicitor may assist you to set up or change your business. Moreover, you may need help in negotiating financial changes. For example, with an increase or decrease in wealth.
Likewise, a solicitor may advise on changing insurance too. Also, an experienced solicitor may provide an alternative method of dispute
resolution to avoid going to court.
Thus, if you contact a solicitor, they should be able to tell you
whether your issue requires the help of a legal professional.
What does a barrister do?
Barristers provide advocacy services before Courts and
Tribunals, and are also consultant legal advisors.
In Queensland, barristers practice as independent legal
counsel. Although they can accept instructions directly from
clients if they choose, they generally receive work through
a referral from solicitors and represent clients in court. They
are instructed and retained on an ad hoc basis as specialist
advocates and consult legal advisers.
Barristers know about the rules of evidence and court
procedure, and can determine the appropriate method and
the argument for presentation in court. Barristers can question
and cross-examine witnesses called by the opposition,
submit arguments on points of law during a trial and
negotiate settlements to discontinue legal proceedings.
Judges and Magistrates are usually chosen from experienced
barristers, although sometimes solicitors are appointed.
Other important legal roles
What is a paralegal?
‘Paralegal’ is a term used to define employees who assist
lawyers in carrying out legal work. In general, they are often referred to as ‘legal assistants’, paralegals undertake common secretarial responsibilities. For example, drafting letters, answering non-legal client queries, arranging appointments and organizing and maintaining client files. In addition, they can also be called upon to prepare litigation documents and undertake research into
case studies and legislation for a legal matter.