There are few people who understand the difference between a solicitor and a barrister. Though both of them belong to the legal profession that deals with numerous types of constitutional concerns, there is a hefty difference.
So, it is not only the dress codes and norms, but they belong to totally different worlds. Do you want to find out what is the difference between barrister and solicitor?
You do not need to do much. We have compiled all the necessary information here. All you need to do is finish the article, and you will have an in-depth understanding of the two. So, shall we get started?
Solicitor & Barrister: The Definitions
One fun fact about both these occupations is that you in the realm of law and constitution, but these are equally important. However, before, we can compare and find out the differences, the first thing that we need to do is know what these two posts in the world of the statute are.
Let us start with the less popular one. In movies, whenever the bad guy (or sometimes the good guys) says they have to check with their lawyer; they are generally referring to a solicitor.
In territories like England and Wales, Northern Ireland, Queensland, and numerous others, they are called attorneys.
Now, let us get to know about barristers. They are conventionally the advocates in general law jurisdictions. In short, they are tasked with advocacy as well as litigation. We will go more into the details. But not in this section.
By the way, did you know that in some countries, the term barrister is considered to be an honorific? So, if you are from Pakistan or such a country, then you might just have found an occupation to impress your parents and your crush.
Anyways, you now should have an idea what these two occupations are, so allow us to get into figuring out the difference between them.
Differences between Barrister and Solicitor
We have already stated that, apart from the fact that both barristers and solicitors work with litigation and similar stuff, there are lots of things different about both of these professions.
These guys are responsible for providing legal advice and negotiations. Briefly interpreted, if you are looking for legal paperwork, transaction issues, and anything similar, you would need to consult a solicitor.
Now, many consider it a desk job. Nevertheless, you would need to travel from place to place to meet your clients. One this is that solicitors can work directly under a firm. It could be a governmental firm, a law agency, a private business, or anything you can effortlessly form a contract with a solicitor.
You probably did not know, but solicitors were limited magistrate courts. Well, the reason behind that their work was not deemed as major back in the day. However, in recent times that has changed significantly. You will now see that some solicitors work in higher courts.
Back in the day, barristers were considered for all the heavy-duty litigation tasks. Even though some solicitors are seen working at high courts, barristers have been seen more often working in all sorts of courts (higher as well as lower).
Their main task includes advocating for their clients in front of judges and juries. Generally, these are done in legal hearings, which means they would defend their client and their case.
Now, the fun part of being is a barrister is that you get to play detective in some cases. To prove your client’s case, you might need to go through a thorough revision of the bar, go investigating, and several other stuff.
On the other hand, unlike solicitors, barristers never come into too much public exposure.
By the way, generally, barristers own a chamber. They are conventionally either from an agency that is in a partnership with another barrister or have their own individual chamber. But there are some who are hired as in-house advisors by companies, the government, and others.
Do you like to dress up? If your answer is a yes, then a solicitor might be a good choice for you. Solicitors can literally wear anything as long as they are not hampering the decorum of the courtroom.
Nonetheless, the conventional dress code for solicitors is similar to any outfit you would in a normal office. Hence, solicitors tend to be quite stylish. For men, it is the generic three-piece suit or two-piece suit, tie, and shoes. Women can wear whatever they actually desire.
On the other hand, barristers have a pretty different attire. They wear a gown and wig. Well, this might seem a tad bit off to you, but there is actually a rich history behind it.
Approximately in the 17th century, a white wig was considered a sign of power and wisdom. And, by incorporating that in their dressing, barristers would try to portray their knowledge as dependable.
Even after roughly 300 years, barristers, judges, and several constitutional personnel. Plus, the fact that there are constitutional professionals who follow this dress code means that it is quite dear to them.
Well, in this case, both of them are a tad similar. You see, a barrister and solicitor would start off by doing their undergraduate in law. After that, they would either do a post-graduate credential in law or a one-year ordinary professional exam.
However, after that, they go on different paths. A solicitor would spend a whole year on legal practice followed by two years of training under a firm (more like an internship).
On the flip side, a barrister would take a one-year Bar Professional training course. If they are done with that, they get invited or ‘called to bar’ to one of the four inns. Here they are appointed as students under a senior barrister (you could say they become apprentice).
There they would be learning everything there is to know about barristers. Once they are done with that, they become full-time barristers with their own chambers.
Now you can clearly see the difference between barrister and solicitor. Doesn’t seem that similar anymore, right? It’s important to know how they differ from each other to decide how you want to shape your future if you plan on pursuing law as your career.