Importance Of Lawyers In The Society: The legal profession is one of the most respected professions in the world. It could be rightly put that this is as a result of the degree of their contribution to the wellness of the society. The legal profession is made up of lawyers and judges. Lawyers are ministers in the temple of justice.
By virtue of their position and services, the laws are upheld, and orderliness is promoted in the society. The relevance of the services of lawyers cut across all sectors in the society. This is because all sectors of the economy and livelihood are regulated by laws. Talk about businesses, the environment, property rights, politics, governance, human safety from crimes, and so on.
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Top 10 Important Roles Of Lawyers In The Society
Below are highlights of the importance of lawyers in the society:
1. Protection of people’s rights through legal representation: Lawyers being ministers in the temple of justice are saddled with the function of protecting people’s rights through legal representation. Only persons that are duly licensed to practice law, have the authority to offer legal representation in such country of license. This makes the role of protecting people’s rights more specific to lawyers.
Inasmuch as one may represent himself in some legal cases, depending on the jurisdiction, such personal representations are highly discouraged because of some cogent reasons. It is through lawyers that the members of the society seek remedy and justice when their legal rights are infringed upon. Through legal representations, the fundamental human rights are enforced; environmental laws and sanity are maintained.
2. Development of the law through advocacy: Lawyers being masters of the law are very inclined to troubling the waters of the law through advocacy in courts and other platforms. They also do communicate their views and proffer recommendations through legal writing. Through such advocacies, the loopholes in the law and pinpointed and analysed; and then this happens, the legislative arm of government who is saddled with the function of making laws are greatly influenced by the advocacies. The judges on their own part adjudicate on matters presented and contented by lawyers on behalf of their clients. The judges juxtapose the laws and the facts, and apply the law judiciously.
When laws are adjudicated upon, they are developing. And where there are lacunas in the law, the judges find a way around the law to attain justice. Such lacunas could be analysed in line with the courts’ decision through legal writing, and from there, the need for adjustment may be considered by the lawmakers where necessary. It is through this process of adjudication and advocacy that the laws are developed.
3. Enlightenment of the citizens: Lawyers do play a role of enlightening the citizens as to their rights in various aspects of the law. The citizens thereon become informed that such laws exist. They can get acquainted to laws during legal consultations. Citizens are also enlightened through legal writings and blogs published by lawyers. Law textbooks are also written by lawyers and judges.
Citizens can come across such books and read them. Most often, the citizens do not have access to the laws as they were. They are not even interested because it is not their field of concern. It is through such textbooks that the laws are made known to the citizens, and are analysed and simplified. Citizens also get informed through campaign and advocacy movements fostered by lawyers in their various fields of interest.
4. Resolution of disputes through alternative means: Litigation is the known way of resolving disputes in the society of today. However, other alternatives to litigation have been birthed, such as negotiation, arbitration, mediation, and so on. These alternative mechanisms are well recommended because they help to decongest the courts which are much occupied with many disputes.
More so, they are less formal and faster. Parties tend to maintain better relationship after what looks like a win-win settlement, as opposed to litigation which is like a battle ground. Through such alternative means, civil disputes can be resolved. It is noteworthy, however, that certain civil disputes may not be resolved via alternative means because they are of public concern, for example, election petition, Lawyers are the master-minders of such alternatives dispute resolution mechanisms. Lawyers do belong to various dispute resolution institutes where they play their roles of settling disputes alternatively. This system promotes peace and harmony in the society.
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5. Prevention of breach of law: Lawyers do help prevent breach of law by offering legal advice to clients, and also through advocate movements and other means of enlightenment. The services of lawyers are not only needed when disputes have arisen. In fact, their services are most needed for the prevention of occurrence of breach. Consulting a lawyer in every step is therefore recommended, for they know what the law says, and where to find the law.
6. Drafting of contracts and other legal documents: Only lawyers are licensed to draft certain legal documents. In fact, certain laws make it an offence a person not being a licensed legal practitioner to perform certain acts.
Drafting of contracts and other legal documents are one other relevance of lawyers in the society. Lawyers are in the position to draft various contracts as it should be, and in line with the law. In doing so, they offer advice as to which part to troll, and the implications of such legal documents.
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7. Lawyers guarantee access to justice: It is no longer news that lawyers do offer pro bono services. More so, there are various legal aids organisations who undertake the roles of protecting the interests of the masses who cannot afford legal services, or who are not informed as to the existence of their rights.
8. Lawyers contribute to economic growth: The services of lawyers are needed in every aspect of the economy. Lawyers contribute to economic growth through their services in fostering businesses; commercial and corporate transactions such as mergers and acquisitions, tax matters, company registration, corporate governance, secretarial roles, real estate transactions, and so on.
In the Corporate Affairs Commission for instance, the Director General must be a legal practitioner. Such can also be seen in various establishments. This explains the relevance of lawyers in such establishments. Their advisory and participatory roles are most needed in various sectors of the economy.
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9. Maintenance of order safeguard of rights in the criminal justice system: The legal team for the prosecutors in criminal trials through diligent prosecution gets offenders to be brought to justice and be punished for their offence on just grounds and upon conviction. Through those convictions, the individuals and the society at large are deterred from committing offences, thereby maintaining law and order in the society.
Private practitioners can also obtain fiat to prosecute suspects. On the other hand, the accused have the right to a legal practitioner who shall represent them in their trial. By the roles of lawyers in the criminal justice system, it is ensured that whilst the offenders get punished, the innocent accused persons are acquitted.
10. Law and policy-making: Lawyers through their advocacy do influence law and policy-making. They play a role in drafting of Bills presented before the legislative houses for consideration.
Through the law, measures are put in place so that the enjoyment of one’s rights does not excuse the infringement of another’s rights. Whilst these laws exist, they are laws simpliciter, but they take force of law only when enforced. It is through lawyers that enforcement is guaranteed. Through this and other instances as discussed in this article, the impacts of lawyers are felt, all for the betterment of the society at large.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka, ACMC, is a lawyer and a certified mediator/conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a developer with knowledge in various programming languages. Samuel is determined to leverage his skills in technology, SEO, and legal practice to revolutionize the legal profession worldwide by creating web and mobile applications that simplify legal research. Sam is also passionate about educating and providing valuable information to people.