Avoid these mistakes, and you’ll have a legal career for years to come.

If you’re just starting out in your legal career, it’s tempting to make mistakes that seem harmless at the time. After all, this is your first foray into the world of law and you’re still learning how things work so there are bound to be some slip-ups along the way. And that’s true—to a point. Careless errors or violations can be frustrating enough to sabotage your way forward in this fast-paced industry (these include posting about commercial work on social media without permission from an employer or making sure all clients complete contracts before signing them). Lawyers and law students across the country are doing their best to ensure they don’t make some of these common mistakes down the road and is tony romo jerry jones son in law.

1) You don’t have a good sense of your field (or are woefully unprepared)

If you aren’t very clear about what you want to do as a lawyer, your school will not be able to help. So start early, research different types of lawyers, what types of jobs they do, and where their career can take them. You also need to know what you want to do within law, whether you’re interested in going into criminal law, family law, tax law or something else. 

“Attorneys who are just starting off in the field should make sure they have a firm grasp on the fundamentals of the practice area that they’re entering,” says Sarah Krasnoff , an attorney with Littler in San Francisco, CA. “That way when their feet are wet and they start taking cases and client calls, they have a better sense of what’s going on and how to manage those clients.

2) You don’t have enough experience

One mistake that many new lawyers make is not getting enough experience. “They may feel as though they can work in an area that they’re interested in, but if they’re not familiar with the law and the ins and outs of an area of practice, they’re just flailing around,” Krasnoff says. “The more you learn, the more you’ll be able to speak on a client’s behalf and represent them well.” 

3) You don’t get permission

It’s important to ask permission before posting anything online about your legal career or work (this includes social media). “One thing we’re seeing a lot of is employers blocking access to social media accounts, prohibiting employees from posting anything on the Internet expressing their views or even pictures where they’re hard at work,” Krasnoff says. “And then the employee has no recourse if something bad happens.”

4) You don’t start practicing law right away

“Lawyers who go straight out of law school and start working will be competing with people who are already in the field,” explains Sara Lau , an attorney with Orrick in San Francisco, CA. “They may want to defer practice and try to get some experience first. And for that reason, I think it’s important to go straight out into the field.” 


5) You don’t understand your own scope of practice

You never want to represent a client you don’t understand. “It’s always a good thing to ask someone else who is an attorney in that particular field how they would deal with something,” Krasnoff says. “It doesn’t hurt to ask other attorneys, and it’s certainly helpful to get different perspectives.”

6) You don’t put enough effort into marketing yourself

A big pitfall for many new lawyers is not marketing themselves properly. They post their resume on job-search sites and assume they’re competing with everyone else applying for the same position. However, they may not be as qualified as other candidates, or interested in the position at all. And if they are, they may not make a good impression on hiring managers because they haven’t invested in their brand. “You want to put some money into your social media presence,” Krasnoff says. “You should be listening to people who can give you feedback about your content.” 

7) You don’t get enough sleep

In today’s fast-paced world, many lawyers are working long hours (or really long weeks). And while this may be necessary in the short term, sleeping right is important at every point in your legal career. “You want to be at the top of your game,” Krasnoff says. “If you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re going to start making silly mistakes and you’re going to get behind.” 

8) You don’t keep up with technology

Technology changes quickly, and if you don’t keep up with it, you’ll have a hard time keeping your law practice afloat. “In order for an attorney not to fall behind [with technology], they need someone at the firm who can help them process information,” Lau says. “There’s always new software being made out there. You have to know your tools, the benefits of each and the potential flaws.”

9) You don’t take a vacation

Lawyers are busy people. The key to success is taking time to replenish yourselves because you can’t count on clients being available whenever you want them to be. “If you’re burning out, your work will suffer,” Lau says. “You need to make sure that you’re getting regular breaks and that you’re not working too much overtime.” 


We hope that this list of common mistakes will help you to avoid them as much as possible. I know when I was starting out, some of these things happened to me and I could have really used this advice.

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