What is the difference between a solicitor, a barrister and a lawyer?

It’s quite tricky for people to grasp the different qualities from these very important job roles, but we’re going to give it our best shot to summarise them all concisely.

The word ‘lawyer’ is an umbrella term used to describe anyone advising clients on legal matters. In England and Wales, however, lawyers either qualify as ‘solicitors’ (employed by a firm) or self-employed ‘barristers’, based during a set of chambers.

Other employment options to being a solicitor within a firm or a barrister within a set of chambers include working ‘in-house’ for a business or professional services firm. There’s also the option to be employed by the Government Legal Service (GLS) or the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) as a lawyer. We hope this helps clarify matters for those considering a career as a lawyer.

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