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Is going to court the only way for your daily bread for the average Nigerian lawyer?
The economy is tough. Expenses are rising daily. As a young lawyer, you ask – are there other income opportunities that those in the legal profession can tap into?
Worldwide, economic challenges have given rise to a shift in how many people go about fending for themselves. A lot more people are opting to work independently without a regular job or in addition to their regular paying jobs, pick up freelancing contracts.
- Uber – transport
- Wakanow – trips and travels
- Fiverr & Upwork – freelancing sites
- Upcounsel – legal services
- Udemy – continuous learning
Welcome to the gig economy. The GIG Economy is a labour market characterized by the prevalence of short-term contracts or freelance work as opposed to permanent jobs. The examples above are all freelancing opportunities that have now become available to almost anybody. The world is tilting towards freelancing.
You went to study law and finished from law school not to drop your wig and gown I hear some say. True. With the Gig economy, you don’t have to drop your wig and gown. The legal community has in some ways been participating in the gig economy – lawyers currently serve business owners with name registration, real estate services, special corporate legal services and much more.
Opportunities abound for legal professionals to provide many other services within the legal sector.
Legal Freelance Editors:
As the name implies, Legal freelancers are legal professionals whose duty is to proofread documents. They compare documents to make sure its fully corrected and “legally compliant.”
Opportunities abound here. This could add up to you as a young lawyer seeking to supplement your current income. The beauty of this is that you are still within the legal space and your skills get honed the more you get into it.
– Good command of English
– Know and understand the law. In other words, a good grasp of the laws. This can be fast tracked using a tool like Legalpedia.
Verbatim reporters are also called court reporters but their skills are needed way out of the courts. They record real time court proceedings, depositions, pre-trial, business proceedings like Annual General Meetings, close captioning for TV stations etc. Verbatim reporters use special tools to capture proceedings. The most common tool is a special type writer that are configured for typing phrases instead of letters. Other tools include voice transcription software instead of using the special type writer.
Skills and competences required:
– Listening skills
– Writing skills
– Reading comprehension
– Attention to details
Note that one does not just become a verbatim reporter overnight. It requires special skills and training but with that skill, you can provide your services to those who need it outside of the law courts.
Representing Clients in Mediation:
You are a lawyer already. Expand your offerings to actively represent clients for mediation. Offer best advice to them on issues of mediation. What a lawyer must note is that in mediation it is not about a win. It is about coming to a mutually acceptable and beneficial settlement between all parties. Here lawyers are not working for the client (for a win) but working with the client for a settlement.
Office Space And Library Rental:
Do you have an office space or a library? Why not offer that to other young and upcoming lawyers or lawyers from out of town to use for a fee? Virtual offices are fast becoming a thing. For many it saves the cost and headache of maintaining a real space while providing an opportunity for some income. Other lawyers may want to have a virtual office branch in a particular location or state but may find it expensive. Do you have any such space you can rent out? Do you have a meeting room they can use from time to time? Do you have a library they could come to for research and work? Your library may not necessarily be loaded with physical books. You could have software tools like Legalpedia that they could make use of while in your rented facility.
What you will need to provide additionally will be a backup generator and internet services depending on the agreement. You could be innovative and make more, by offering to take care of food and refreshments on a daily basis or for special meetings they may have.
Here are a few side hustle opportunities that lawyers can tap into. Share them with us what other ideas do you have for making money using your skills as a lawyer?.
Would you be interested in learning more about verbatim reporting, legal freelance Editorial services or any of the other opportunities? Talk with us – [email protected]