Alternative Careers for Lawyers

Journalism (Legal)

Having legal knowledge can, of course, open doors to jobs in legal publishing - a wide field that includes reporting, communicating information about law and news about the profession, print and online journalism, general and specialist area.

The weekly magazine market is lively and competitive, the big general industry publications being the Law Society Gazette, The Lawyer and Legal Week. The Law Society Gazette is published by the Law Society and is the oldest and most circulated - over 100 years old, with a circulation of over 100,000. The Lawyer (Centaur) was launched at the end of the Eighties, and Legal Week (Incisive Media) some 10 years later. The latter two have weekly circulation figures of around 30,000. Law Society ownership is possibly editorially restricting on the Gazette, although it is far from a mouthpiece for Chancery Lane, as they are keen to stress. The Lawyer is known for its original reporting and editorial thought, with a City, company / commercial focus, also strong on in-house counsel. Legal Week has fresh and innovative feel under a recent revamp and has a strong American capability. Of their online incarnations, The Lawyer perhaps has the most well-thought off website for editorial content, whereas, in a role reversal, the Gazette is relatively new to the online publishing arena.

There are smaller niche and specialist titles. For example PLC (Practical Law for Companies).

The Times legal section has shrunk in recent years.

Informa Law is one of the professional divisions of the enormous Informa Plc and produces Lloyd's Law Reports, Lloyd's List, and a number of specialist titles such as Trademark World and Patent World, and various niche newsletters and books. i-law is the online compilation of the Informa Law publications.

Points to consider in approaching legal journalism are: the type of publishing (print or online or both); the publication schedule (for example, daily, weekly or monthly); and the nature of the work (for example editing the work of others, commissioning work from others or writing original pieces).

Also, see 'Journalism (General)'.