Legal Occupations

Employment of legal occupations is projected to grow 9 percent from 2016 to 2026, about as fast as the average for all occupations, which will result in about 116,200 new jobs. As law firms try to increase the efficiency of legal services and reduce their costs, there is expected to be strong demand to hire many more paralegals and legal assistants. Additionally, the demand for lawyers is expected to continue as individuals, businesses, and governments require legal services in many areas.

The median annual wage for legal occupations was $80,080 in May 2017, which was higher than the median annual wage for all occupations of $37,690.

Arbitrators, mediators, and conciliators facilitate negotiation and dialogue between disputing parties to help resolve conflicts outside of the court system.

Court reporters create word-for-word transcriptions at trials, depositions, and other legal proceedings. Some court reporters provide captioning for television and real-time translation for deaf or hard-of-hearing people at public events, in business meetings, or in classrooms.

Judges and hearing officers apply the law by overseeing the legal process in courts. They also conduct pretrial hearings, resolve administrative disputes, facilitate negotiations between opposing parties, and issue legal decisions.

Lawyers advise and represent individuals, businesses, and government agencies on legal issues and disputes.

Paralegals and legal assistants perform a variety of tasks to supportlawyers, including maintaining and organizing files, conducting legal research, and drafting documents.

The wage at which half of the workers in the occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Median wage data are from the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics survey.

Typical level of education that most workers need to enter this occupation.

Last Modified Date:Friday, April 13, 2018

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections, PSB Suite 2135, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE Washington, DC 20212-0001