What Can I Do with a Master's Degree in Law?
Master's degrees in law are intended for law school graduates who want to broaden their knowledge and specialize in a particular area of practice. Graduate programs are available that offer concentrations in areas such as banking and corporate finance, entertainment law, tax law and intellectual property. Find out more about these programs.
Master's Degree in Law
To be admitted into a master's degree program in law, you'll need to have earned a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from a law school sanctioned by the American Bar Association or have a degree in law from a non-U.S. university. These graduate programs allow you to gain knowledge and expertise in a particular area of law, giving you greater options when it comes to legal practice.
Important Facts About This Field
|Median Salary (2019)||$107,427 per year (for corporate attorneys)|
|Similar Occupations||Executive Assistant, Deputy General Counsel, Associate Attorney, Accountant, Certified Public Accountant|
|Key Skills||Teamwork, analytical, research and advisory skills|
|Licensure||Bar requirements vary between states|
Banking, Corporate and Finance Law
If you're interested in a career in finance law, a master's degree in law focusing on banking, corporate and finance law will allow you to tackle issues related to corporate law, antitrust law, taxation, bankruptcy and banking regulatory issues. Corporate law focuses on applications in mergers and acquisitions, entrepreneurship, corporate taxation and commercial transactions. Discrimination is another area that you'll likely be involved in. If you focus on finance law, you'll learn about securities regulations, estate planning and financial protection.
Global finance and international trade is a growing field for lawyers. Concentrating on this facet of your master's degree will give you expertise in fields such as international trade law, global competition law and commercial arbitration. If you study international law, you may also learn about the legal culture of other countries, and issues such as political asylum, refugee law, environmental law, political and humanitarian law and immigration.
Intellectual Property and Entertainment Law
A master's degree in law focusing on intellectual property or entertainment law gives you the training to deal with issues such as copyright infringement, patents, trademarks and intellectual property. Entertainment lawyers work on legal issues related to the music, television and film industries.
One expanding area for lawyers is dealing with litigation related to the Internet and digital media. Information technology law is a growing field that incorporates many of the issues of intellectual property, patents and trademarks.
Continuing changes to the U.S. Tax Code provide career opportunities as a private tax attorney, as well as federal or state government options. If you focus your master's degree program in taxation law, you'll become adept at personal and business tax codes, taxation for non-profit organizations, estate and gift taxation, property transactions and state taxation. If you want to work as an international lawyer, you'll need to know about taxation in a global economy and the tax codes of different countries.