The main difference between lawyer barrister and solicitor is that a solicitor is a lawyer who provides clients with legal advice regarding contracts, wills, conveyance, business matters, inheritance, etc., while a barrister is a lawyer who is specialized in representing his or her clients in the courts. Most significantly, the term “lawyer” involves both solicitors and barristers.
Simply put, a lawyer is any legal professional qualified enough to give legal advice. Lawyers such as solicitors and other legal executives approach barristers and contract them to obtain their legal advice and their expertise in a particular area of law regarding a specific case that is brought to court.
Key Areas Covered
1. Who is a Lawyer
– Definition, Features
2. Who is a Barrister
– Definition, Features
3. Who is a Solicitor
– Definition, Features
4. Similarities – Lawyer Barrister and Solicitor
– Outline of Common Features
5. Difference Between Lawyer Barrister and Solicitor
– Comparison of Key Differences
Lawyer, Barrister, Solicitor
Who is a Lawyer
The term lawyer refers to a professional who practices law. There are multiple groups of professionals who fall into the main category of lawyers. These include canon lawyer, solicitor, civil law notary, legal executive, barrister-at-law, barrister, attorney at law, advocate, bar-at-law, counsellor, etc.
Basically, a lawyer is expected to apply abstract legal knowledge and theories to practical world problems in order to address client issues. However, the role of a lawyer becomes distinct, moving from one legal jurisdiction to another.
Who is a Barrister
Simply put, a barrister is a highly qualified legal professional who provides clients with expert advice. Not only that, he/she also represents advocates and defends his/her clients in court or at a tribunal. Most importantly, barristers usually specialize in one specific area of law. However, some barristers practise law in a more general sense, covering multiple areas.
To become a qualified barrister, a person has to complete the vocational component of bar training after his/her LLB or law conversion course. After this initial step, fledgling barristers have to undergo a 1-year period of pupillage, which involves a process of shadowing a barrister before he or she is allowed to carry on the practical work of chambers.
Who is a Solicitor
A solicitor is a legal practitioner who is qualified and holds the responsibility of legal documentation towards filing a case and during a court case. A solicitor renders expertise legal advice to his or her clients in multiple areas of law, both on contentious and non-contentious modes.
Moreover, to become a solicitor, a person has to undergo and complete the 1-2 year vocational course: the Legal Practice Course (LPC) after completing LLB or GDL, followed by a training contract of two years.
Similarities Between Lawyer Barrister and Solicitor
- Barrister and solicitor are both two categories of practising lawyers; both barristers and solicitors fall into the general category of “lawyers.”
- Currently, the role of solicitors and barristers have started to overlap. Nowadays, we see solicitors who appear in the higher courts as advocates. Similarly, barristers sometimes conduct litigation.
- In multiple countries, including New Zealand, Canada, and some regions of Australia, lawyers are allowed to bear both the titles of solicitor and barrister.
Difference Between Lawyer Barrister and Solicitor
A lawyer is any legal professional qualified enough to give legal advice. In addition, a solicitor is a lawyer who provides the clients with legal advice regarding contracts, wills, conveyance, business matters, inheritance, etc., and sometimes represents them in the courts. On the other hand, a barrister is a lawyer who is specialized in representing his or her clients in the courts.
Nature of Work
Barristers usually practice as advocates and represent their clients in court, while solicitors and other lawyers such as legal executives most frequently engage in legal work, being inside a law firm or an office setting.
Access to the Public
You can easily contact and receive the service of a solicitor or any other general lawyer. This is relatively harder when it comes to a barrister.
Moreover, a barrister appearing in court is traditionally expected to be dressed in traditional court attire, which includes a long black robe. However, there is no such dress code for a solicitor or other lawyers.
The main difference between lawyer barrister and solicitor is that solicitors are a group of law practitioners who provide clients with legal advice on a wide range of matters, while barristers are legal advocates for solicitors within and outside of the courtroom. Unlike solicitors, barristers are experts in one particular area of law on which they have specialized. In addition, ‘lawyer’ is the general category to which all the legal professionals such as barristers, solicitors, and legal executives fall into.