Top Lawyer Resume Sample for You
Lawyers, like most other professions, have to look for jobs and get themselves employed with reputable law firms to build and advance their careers. They can’t avoid resume writing and job allocation and have to go through this process from initiation to closure.
Moreover, a successful lawyer resume sample is quite difficult to write. One has to demonstrate progressive experience along with excellent soft skills to get noticed by recruiters. Moreover, a great sample resume for lawyer should be bot-beating to get through the ATS system and get more interviews.
What Is the Best Format for a Lawyer Resume?
To craft a winning resume, you can use three resume and CV formats - chronological, functional, and combination. The lawyer resume format is no exception.
A successful legal resume should describe you as a person and a professional. If you want to be taken seriously, the proper lawyer resume format is something that will help you build that image. Here is what professional editors and resume writers recommend:
Use a chronological format if you feel that it’s important to focus on the dates of your employment or if you feel that your duties differ too much from employment to employment. If you are experienced in civil litigation as well as in criminal legal matters, and your career has no gaps, a chronological format is the best for you.
A functional format for a lawyer resume sample fits those professionals who have an extensive career working for one or several employers and performing similar duties over the years. A functional legal resume has a “career highlights” section with key skills and competencies mentioned there it's like in linkedin resume. In this case, the employment history with dates is mentioned in a list.
Combination of the two legal resumes formats mentioned above. You should choose wisely what kind of resume sample lawyer fits your career the best.
Advice for Lawyer Resume Templates
Unfortunately, for quite a long time, a resume sample for lawyer job openings received too little attention from both candidates and recruiters. The content played a greater role, given the fact that ATS systems weren’t a factor yet.
However, thanks to digitalization, the hiring process has been dramatically changed recently. To get your resume to a human hiring manager’s table, you have to ensure that a resume template for your lawyer resume gets through ATS algorithms and filters. For that, it has to be easy to scan.
Black&white simple templates with no tables, charts, graphs, and handwritten fonts will get your lawyer resume further than once popular tricky and fancy ones.
What’s Better: Lawyer Resume Objective or Resume Summary?
A resume summary or objective is the first thing a recruiter sees when reading. It’s the first thing that takes those precious 8 seconds of their attention span. If you fail to captivate them with this part of your lawyer resume, chances are you’ll not be shortlisted.
Whether to put a lawyer resume objective or a resume summary depends on you. However, objectives indeed seem a little old-fashioned. They only state the goal of a legal resume, informing recruiters what position and why a candidate is interested in.
Resume summaries are more descriptive of your skills and accomplishments. They tell what you did or can do that makes you a perfect fit for the opening.
Lawyer Resume Summaries Samples
However, writing great summaries for lawyer resume samples has its rules and recommendations. It’s not so easy to put all the important details in two-three sentences. However, it’s possible. Compare these two summaries:
· Results-driven and customer-oriented lawyer with 10+ years of progressive experience. Skilled in legal research and document writing to protect clients’ interests and act on behalf of them. Seeking a position in a reputable law firm to positively contribute to its success record and drive excellence in speaking for its clients.
· Experienced lawyer who is dependable and target-oriented. Responsible for managing cases for my clients, utilizing legal research, legal writing, and communication skills.
Lawyer Resume Objective Samples
Lawyer resume objectives are hard to meet today; yet, they still happen in the resumes. Some people prefer them more than summaries. Therefore, it’s essential to know how to write an impressive lawyer resume objective.
Here you can see the examples of a correctly worded objective versus the one which is not professional:
· Objective is to land an entry-level attorney job with a reputable law firm providing services in civil litigation. Preferably, the above-mentioned position respects hard work and extra effort and acknowledges it with career growth opportunities.
· Looking for entry-level lawyer jobs to start my career.
How to Put a Job Description on a Resume Sample
Your work experiences as a lawyer should have a special place in your resume. Actually, this is all your resume is about. Thus, you should be especially cautious when writing your lawyer job description.
· First of all, read the position announcement to which you intend to tailor your resume. It has lots of information that you should include in your lawyer resume one way or another.
· Highlight key skills and keywords that you think you should use too. Actually, a job advertisement is all you need to craft a winning resume that meets all standards.
· Select several accomplishments you’ve made for each employer. No one is interested in reading some average accomplishments. Let people understand what makes you special.
· Put as much numerical information as possible. Recruiters like numbers because they help them understand your value better.
· Write using simple language. Don’t exaggerate with professional jargon. Your resume is likely to be read by a recruiter who doesn’t have a legal background.
How to Describe Your Experience
Work experience on a lawyer resume should tell about your previous accomplishments and show you are an achiever rather than a doer. You should use action verbs in your lawyer sample resume and refrain from explaining obvious things, which are common for all lawyers. In addition, try to demonstrate why this particular experience is so meaningful. For example:
· Was responsible for communicating with clients in writing and verbally to collect information and file the case.
· Conducted client interviews to collect information related to the case and educate them on the possible ways to resolve their legal issues.
What Is an Entry-Level Lawyer Resume?
Students have to start their search for a job having no experience. What should they do in this case? What should they put in their entry-level legal resumes?
Of course, such candidates should not lie about being professional when they are not. However, they must have some entry-level legal jobs to put in resume work experience. For example, they might have assisted lawyers during their summer internships or handled legal matters in their volunteer placements. Whatever relevant experience you have – put it in your resume. Also, do not forget to outline your career goals. It can be helpful for landing an entry-level law job.
Who Is an Experienced Lawyer with Work History?
An experienced lawyer with a profound work history would never let themselves waste blank space in a resume with information that is obvious and does not characterize them as an achiever. They would do everything to showcase all their achievements as a lawyer in their.
Therefore, one will never see professional lawyer resume examples that look like this:
- Was involved in drafting legal documents such as pleadings, memos, notices, etc. as well as helped with legal correspondence.
For a professional, this is just a waste of space. Instead, their resume will tell
- spearheaded the implementation of legal software to cut the time needed to process correspondence and draft legal documents.
Education Section: What You Can Put There
The education section is a special section in a lawyer resume. One should actually have a law degree or be in the process of getting it to qualify even for an entry-level law job. Thus, your lawyer education must be complete and relevant for you to be considered for a position.
Apart from a college or university degree, one can also add such things into the legal resume education section:
· Professional courses (relevant)
· Software training (legal software)
· Study abroad experiences
· Educational achievements (scholarships, dean’s lists, etc.)
· Professional university-level contests and competitions
· Educational honors and awards
· Relevant coursework or modules
Lawyer Resume Education Section Samples
For your education to strengthen your candidature, you should put only the most relevant degrees and qualifications in your lawyer resume samples. It should showcase your professional fitness.
Juris Doctor (2011)
Lincoln University, Oxford, OH
· First of Class Honors
· Dean’s list (spring 2010)
· Magna Cum Laude
Bachelor of Art in Criminal Justice (2008)
Austin University, Austin, TX
· GPA: 3.4
B.B.A with Concentration in Marketing (2008)
New York State University, New York, NY
· Received certification from National Marketers Association
· Won internship with Procter & Gamble
Master of Laws (2011)
UC Irvine School of Law
· Completed a degree
Skills to Put on a Resume for a Lawyer
Mentioning lawyer skills is essential for creating a bot-beating resume that passes the ATS system. These skills quite often are the keywords that help your resume rank at the top. If you fail to put the right key skills in your resume, the applicant tracking system used by the recruiting firm may label your document as irrelevant.
Therefore, there must be a special lawyer resume skills section in your resume where you carefully list competencies that meet the position announcement. In addition, you also should distribute those relevant key skills (keywords) throughout the entire lawyer resume samples for the document to be considered as the one that meets selection criteria.
Here are a few skills examples that are common for many lawyers:
- Oral communication
- Client service
- Legal research
- Computer literacy
- Legal procedures
- Analytical thinking
- Time management
- Logical reasoning
- Attention to detail
- Organizational skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Written communication
- Case management
Lawyer Resume Skills Examples
However, be wise when adding the skills. Adding too many of them does not guarantee your resume a higher ranking in the system. There is a reasonable limit for skills, too.
Here is how to avoid making a mistake with your skills in lawyer resume samples:
· Microsoft Office, LexisNexis, Leadership and Teamwork, Report Writing, Staff Management, Legal Research, Organizational Skills, Project Management, Process Management, Digital Marketing, Client Service
Here is how professional lawyer resume examples look like:
· Professional Skills: Legal Research, Legal Writing, Time Management, Communication, Client Service, Case Management
· Soft Skills: Analytical Thinking, Logical Reasoning, Leadership, Problem-Solving
· Computer Skills: Office 365, LexisNexis
Tips for Making a Winning Resume
A lawyer resume is great if it describes the person from the right angle. For example, many people ask whether they should put publications on a legal resume. The answer is YES if this information makes you a stronger candidate.
Based on this logic, you can add other lawyer resume sections if they prove you are the best fit for the opening. Your goal is to make your legal resume winning by adding relevant and important information.
Here are a few sections that you can consider adding:
· Professional honors and awards
· Publications and research
· Professional Affiliations
· Key Cases
Other Sections in Lawyer Resumes
However, a professional lawyer resume does not end with education and skills sections. It is recommended to include other information that can be relevant to the job you intend to land. If you are not sure what to add, here is an example of an auxiliary section of a resume for lawyer jobs:
· Volunteer Experience: Coached children aged 3-13 to play basketball.
· Honors and Awards: Achieved a medal for being an avid yoga and ball dance practitioner.
However, a great resume for lawyer jobs would definitely include the following:
· Volunteer Experience: Provided the underrepresented minorities with legal protection and spoke for their rights.
· Honors and Awards: Awarded by the National Lawyers Association for providing the voice to wrongfully evicted people.
A good lawyer resume is successful if it is concise and precise but lists all the information needed to form an opinion of a candidate. Thus, writing it indeed takes time and effort. You have to find the job advertisement you intend to tailor your resume to and analyze it against the use of keywords. If you get the idea of what’s expected from you, crafting a winning resume won’t be difficult.
That being said, we do encourage you to either spare some time learning how to write a lawyer resume or get professional help with that. In any case, that would be considered a valuable investment in your career.