These Are Recession-Proof Legal Careers, According to Experts

Every year, more than 30,000 men and women graduate from the hundreds of law schools found throughout the country. In the ever-changing legal community, the top concern among those graduates is how to land a quality job, preferably one at a big, corporate firm that pays well.

But even after young lawyers land a good-paying job, there is no guarantee they will keep it. In April of 2020, law.com claimed that close to 65,000 jobs were cut in the legal profession. To be sure, a high percentage of those cuts were a result of COVID, but losing a job during a recession or any other crisis is something every lawyer would like to avoid.

To that point, it might be helpful to consider which practice areas are the most recession-proof. If you can focus on any of the following areas of the law, it might be able to help you find and keep a job.

Healthcare

It might seem like a no brainer that in the age of COVID healthcare would prove to be a robust practice area no matter the condition of the economy. But many think the reason healthcare law will prove so resilient is not because of the pandemic but because of issues like patient privacy.

Another contributor to the overall health of the healthcare legal field is the continued upheaval in regards to Obamacare. Also, because of the sheer number of rules, regulations, and guidelines, and because of the seriousness of the issues and number of different parties involved, good healthcare lawyers are always in high demand.

Bankruptcy

The sad reality of the coronavirus and the on again off again lockdowns that have swept across the nation in 2020 is that businesses of all sizes have wrestled with bankruptcy. What is even worse is that the total fallout from the lockdowns could take years to work themselves out.

Business Insider listed 38 prominent retailers and restaurants that have already filed for bankruptcy in 2020. It is likely that there will be more on the way in 2021 and beyond. While it is unfortunate for those companies, it is a boon to the lawyers who will untangle the financial mess left behind by the lockdowns.

Cybersecurity

While it can be a somewhat technical field that requires a decent amount of background knowledge, cybersecurity should prove to be a stable legal niche in the coming years, if for no other reason than the fact that we spend so much of our time online. Businesses, governments, non-profits, schools, and other institutions all need legal advice to make sure they are in compliance with the latest regulations.

If you have a solid understanding of the cybersecurity world this could be a promising field.

Employment Law

2020 has actually been a solid year for those who work in labor and employment. Companies of all sizes have reached out to labor and employment lawyers seeking advice for information on how to apply for government aid and how to make sure they hire and fire employees in a way that minimizes the chances of legal retaliation.

As noted above, the fallout from the 2020 lockdowns will take years to finally be resolved. That means labor and employment lawyers should have job security for that time and beyond.

In-House Lawyers

One final legal career that is recession-proof is the position of in-house lawyer. Because hiring in-house lawyers is often cheaper than farming out work to an expensive law firm, in-house lawyers are seen as a cost-saving measure. In recessions and other times of economic uncertainty, it is good to be on the inside.

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