Many people who study the law want to become media lawyers. This role is very common in North America, with these lawyers representing clients who are in sports, entertainment or related industries. The primary role of a media lawyer is to manage the information about the client that is available in the public media. The scope has expanded to include the Internet, in addition to the written and television press.
Everyone who wants to become a media lawyer must first successfully graduate from law school and pass a law society examination. Admission to law school is based on the successful completion of at least three years of an undergraduate degree at a recognized university. A law degree is a graduate-level program and requires two to three years of full-time study. Upon successful completion, candidates are required to obtain a specific amount of related work experience and to pass a written exam.
The most reliable way to become a media lawyer is to secure a position in a media law firm. Initially, you can look for a position as a researcher or articling student. Take the time to excel at the position that you are in, in order to obtain the confidence of the senior partners or lawyers. A good employment record and references from previous employers are important in this role.
All lawyers are responsible for attracting and signing new clients. For people who want to become a media lawyer, this might require developing business relationships with talent managers, recording studios, producers or sports agents. These contacts will be aware of available artists or athletes and can provide valuable references.
Many people who are interested in this aspect of the law find it necessary to move to a city with a strong media base. Examples include New York City, Hollywood and London. Keep in mind that it is best to secure a job before moving to a new city, regardless of your skills and expertise.
In addition to legal expertise and skills, interpersonal and communication skills are essential if you want to become a media lawyer. Many people invest time in additional, focused courses on these two skill sets in order to improve them. Working with a career or executive coach is another way to identity gaps in your skills and areas of weakness. Developing a plan to address these issues is essential to the enhancement of your career and the realization of your dream to become a media lawyer.