Career Paths: Legal Publishing

The opportunities is legal publishing are growing as vehicles for sharing information develop.  Many lawyers who enter publishing as researchers and editors do so from a love of research and writing.  Additionally, they don't have to worry about client development, exhausting hours or keeping track of billable time.  Like legislative researchers, they are often involved at the cutting edge of legal analysis.  For the corporate minded, management opportunities are attractive and can lead in several directions, including senior editing, researchers, product development, marketing and executive level management.

Lawyers are also frequently hired as sales representatives for a publisher's legal client base, which may include firms, legal departments of corporations, law schools and government libraries, and faculty.  Strong interpersonal skills are needed to be successful at this work, as it involves gaining clients' trust in you as well as your company and products.  You may be responsible for extensive training and upgrades, especially if you represent an on-line computerized research service.  Good training should result in reduced costs for a client, so your ability to understand computer communications and impart the information in a variety of non-technical ways to suit each client is essential.  Those of you with sales experience can understand especially the satisfaction of such work.

The advantages of working for legal publishers include lack of necessity for bar admission (making it possible, for instance, to relocate to a different state and change employers almost without interruption) and the availability of flexible or part time hours.