Lawyer CV Examples & Guide for 2024

Home > 
Lawyer CV

Your lawyer CV must clearly showcase your academic credentials. Include your law degree, any specializations, and academic honors to establish your expertise. Professional experience is vital on your CV, detailing your practice areas and case history. Highlight your roles, responsibilities, and key achievements to demonstrate your legal acumen and practical skills.

Resume Example Fold Background

Crafting a CV that effectively showcases your expertise in various areas of law is a significant challenge you might face. Our guide offers insights on structuring your experience and qualifications in a manner that highlights your legal acumen, ensuring you stand out to potential employers.

In this Enhancv lawyer CV guide, you'll find out more about how to:

  • Answer job requirements with your lawyer CV and experience;
  • Curate your academic background and certificates, following industry-leading CV examples;
  • Select from +10 niche skills to match the ideal candidate profile
  • Write a more succinct experience section that consists of all the right details.

Do you need more specific insights into writing your lawyer CV? Our guides focus on unique insights for each individual role:

How complex should the format of your lawyer CV be?

Perhaps, you decided to use a fancy font and plenty of colours to ensure your lawyer CV stands out amongst the pile of other candidate profiles. Alas - this may confuse recruiters. By keeping your format simple and organising your information coherently, you'll ultimately make a better impression. What matters most is your experience, while your CV format should act as complementary thing by:

  • Presenting the information in a reverse chronological order with the most recent of your jobs first. This is done so that your career history stays organised and is aligned to the role;
  • Making it easy for recruiters to get in touch with you by including your contact details in the CV header. Regarding the design of your CV header, include plenty of white space and icons to draw attention to your information. If you're applying for roles in the UK, don't include a photo, as this is considered a bad practice;
  • Organising your most important CV sections with consistent colours, plenty of white space, and appropriate margins (2.54 cm). Remember that your CV design should always aim at legibility and to spotlight your key information;
  • Writing no more than two pages of your relevant experience. For candidates who are just starting out in the field, we recommend to have an one-page CV.

One more thing about your CV format - you may be worried if your double column CV is Applicant Tracker System (ATS) complaint. In our recent study, we discovered that both single and double-column CVs are ATS-friendly . Most ATSes out there can also read all serif and sans serif fonts. We suggest you go with modern, yet simple, fonts (e.g. Rubik, Lato, Raleway) instead of the classic Times New Roman. You'll want your application to stand out, and many candidates still go for the classics. Finally, you'll have to export your CV. If you're wondering if you should select Doc or PDF, we always advise going with PDF. Your CV in PDF will stay intact and opens easily on every OS, including Mac OS.

pro tip icon

Use bold or italics sparingly to draw attention to key points, such as job titles, company names, or significant achievements. Overusing these formatting options can dilute their impact.

top sections icon

The top sections on a lawyer CV

  • Contact Information is essential to quickly reach the lawyer.
  • Education Background showcases legal qualifications.
  • Legal Experience reflects practical expertise in law.
  • Bar Admissions highlight licensing in relevant jurisdictions.
  • Key Skills underscore competencies like legal research.
Checklist icon
What recruiters value on your CV:
  • Highlight your legal qualifications and experiences, ensuring you detail your specialisation areas such as commercial law, criminal law, or intellectual property, and the specific legal matters you've handled.
  • Detail any notable cases, transactions, or legal projects you've been involved in, emphasising your role, the skills you applied, and the outcomes, as measurable achievements demonstrate your competency.
  • Include any publications or research you've completed in the legal field, as these showcase your expertise and ability to contribute thought leadership within the profession.
  • Emphasise your professional memberships, such as being a member of the Law Society or other legal associations, as these indicate a commitment to the legal community and ongoing professional development.
  • Mention your advocacy and verbal communication skills, providing examples such as court appearances or negotiations, which are critical for a lawyer in effectively representing clients.

What information should you include in your lawyer CV header?

The CV header is potentially the section that recruiters would refer to the most, as it should include your:

  • Contact details - your professional (non-work) email address and phone number;
  • Professional photograph - if you're applying hinting at the value you bring as a professional.

Many professionals often struggle with writing their lawyer CV headline. That's why in the next section of this guide, we've curated examples of how you can optimise this space to pass any form of assessment.

top sections icon

Examples of good CV headlines for lawyer:

  1. Associate Solicitor | Commercial Law Specialist | LL.M in Intellectual Property | 5 Years of Practice
  2. Senior Legal Counsel | Corporate Governance Expert | Compliance | 10+ Years Experience
  3. Junior Barrister | Criminal Defence Advocate | Pupillage Completed | Emerging Practice in Jury Trials
  4. Legal Director | Real Estate & Property Law | Chartered Legal Executive | 15 Years at the Bar
  5. Family Law Attorney | Mediation and Collaborative Law | Accredited Resolution Member | 7 Years Experience
  6. Senior Partner | International Business Law | Mergers & Acquisitions | Over 20 Years of Legal Expertise

Your lawyer CV introduction: selecting between a summary and an objective

lawyer candidates often wonder how to start writing their resumes. More specifically, how exactly can they use their opening statements to build a connection with recruiters, showcase their relevant skills, and spotlight job alignment. A tricky situation, we know. When crafting you lawyer CV select between:

Find out more examples and ultimately, decide which type of opening statement will fit your profile in the next section of our guide:

top sections icon

CV summaries for a lawyer job:

  • Seasoned commercial lawyer with over 15 years of experience in top-tier firms, specialising in mergers and acquisitions. Renowned for expert legal advice that resulted in a 20% increase in successful deal closures for a London-based legal practice. Outstanding negotiation skills and a proven track record of driving complex transactions to completion.
  • Dynamic advocate with a solid background in criminal law and civil litigation amassed over a decade at a prestigious New York law firm. Instrumental in achieving a landmark court victory that set a new legal precedent in corporate fraud cases. Keen analytical abilities and a skillful approach to case strategy formulation.
  • Experienced marketing director transitioning into legal consultancy, bringing a unique perspective on corporate law with an emphasis on intellectual property rights. Having successfully led a campaign that boosted a tech startup's market share by 30%, eager to offer a blend of creative strategy development and rigorous legal analysis.
  • Accomplished engineer with 10 years of managing large-scale infrastructure projects, seeking to leverage robust problem-solving skills and detail-oriented mindset in the field of construction law. Proven expertise in negotiating multi-million-pound contracts and keen on applying technical knowledge to legal challenges within the construction sector.
  • As a recent law graduate, I am eager to apply my rigorous academic training and moot court successes to practical legal work, with a specific interest in environmental law. My objective is to contribute fresh perspectives and enthusiastic efforts to advocate for sustainability and compliance with environmental regulations.
  • Armed with a passion for social justice and a fresh LLB degree, my aim is to dive into human rights law and make a tangible difference through dedicated service. With top honours in legal research and writing, I am ready to tackle challenging cases that uphold individuals’ rights and freedoms.

The best formula for your lawyer CV experience section

The CV experience section is the space where many candidates go wrong by merely listing their work history and duties. Don't do that. Instead, use the job description to better understand what matters most for the role and integrate these keywords across your CV. Thus, you should focus on:

  • showcasing your accomplishments to hint that you're results-oriented;
  • highlighting your skill set by integrating job keywords, technologies, and transferrable skills in your experience bullets;
  • listing your roles in reverse chronological order, starting with the latest and most senior, to hint at how you have grown your career;
  • featuring metrics, in the form of percentage, numbers, etc. to make your success more tangible.

When writing each experience bullet, start with a strong, actionable verb, then follow it up with a skill, accomplishment, or metric. Use these professional examples to perfect your CV experience section:

Checklist icon
Best practices for your CV's work experience section
  • Highlight significant cases you have worked on, detailing the nature of the case and your role in achieving a favorable outcome, to show your hands-on experience and legal acumen.
  • Enumerate specific legal skills, such as drafting contracts, negotiating settlements, or litigation, to demonstrate your expertise in practical legal work and technical ability.
  • Include contributions to legal research and publications, if applicable, to underscore your proficiency in legal scholarship and staying abreast of current law.
  • Detail your experience in client relations, including advisory roles and counselling, to illustrate your ability to communicate effectively and provide sound legal advice.
  • Mention any leadership roles or project management experience within a legal context, such as heading a legal department or overseeing a major case, to show your capability in leading teams and managing substantial responsibilities.
  • Specify any experience with regulatory compliance and risk management, highlighting your understanding of legal frameworks and ability to minimise legal risks for clients or your organisation.
  • Document your proficiency in different areas of law, whether it be corporate, criminal, family, or others, to indicate your areas of specialisation and diverse legal knowledge.
  • Include any involvement in professional legal associations or committees, to demonstrate engagement with the legal community and commitment to professional development.
  • Detail your experience with legal software or case management systems, which shows you are adept at leveraging technology in legal practice.
Work Experience
Senior Litigation Attorney
Baker McKenzie
  • Lead counsel in over 30 high-stakes commercial litigation cases, consistently securing favorable outcomes for the firm's clients.
  • Developed and implemented a comprehensive risk assessment protocol that reduced legal exposure for the firm's corporate clients by 25%.
  • Authored and negotiated complex multi-party contracts for international transactions, improving client satisfaction ratings by 15%.
Work Experience
Corporate Counsel - Tech Sector
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Advised technology startups on intellectual property strategies, resulting in the successful patenting of 20 unique software products.
  • Spearheaded regulatory compliance initiatives for clients in the fintech sector, enhancing their market positioning.
  • Fostered strategic partnerships with client executives, contributing to a 30% increase in the law firm's tech industry client portfolio.
Work Experience
Employment Law Attorney
Littler Mendelson
  • Managed a caseload of approximately 50 ongoing employment law cases for a diverse clientele, achieving a 90% success rate.
  • Conducted extensive legal research that was used as the foundation for the firm's challenge of an existing labor law, leading to a precedent-setting court ruling.
  • Educated and trained corporate clients' HR departments on compliance with new state labor statutes, minimizing legal risks by 40%.
Work Experience
Environmental Defense Attorney
  • Orchestrated a team of junior attorneys and paralegals in a landmark environmental case, resulting in a historic $50 million settlement.
  • Led negotiations for community redevelopment projects, securing over $10 million in government funding for sustainable initiatives.
  • Drafted amicus briefs on high-profile cases related to climate change policy, influencing legislative amendments and corporate practices.
Work Experience
Mergers & Acquisitions Attorney
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
  • Represented clients in complex mergers and acquisitions, valued at over $3 billion, facilitating seamless transitions and safeguarding against litigation.
  • Acted as lead counsel in the negotiation of international joint ventures, expanding the firm’s global footprint by establishing partnerships in 5 new countries.
  • Devised and led a training program for associates on cross-border transactions, enhancing firm expertise and leading to a 20% productivity increase in M&A operations.

How to ensure your lawyer CV stands out when you have no experience

This part of our step-by-step guide will help you substitute your experience section by helping you spotlight your skill set. First off, your ability to land your first job will depend on the time you take to assess precisely how you match the job requirements. Whether that's via your relevant education and courses, skill set, or any potential extracurricular activities. Next:

  • Systematise your CV so that it spotlights your most relevant experience (whether that's your education or volunteer work) towards the top;
  • Focus recruiters' attention to your transferrable skill set and in particular how your personality would be the perfect fit for the role;
  • Consider how your current background has helped you build your technological understanding - whether you've created projects in your free time or as part of your uni degree;
  • Ensure you've expanded on your teamwork capabilities with any relevant internships, part-time roles, or projects you've participated in the past.
pro tip icon

If you have experience in diverse fields, highlight how this has broadened your perspective and skill set, making you a more versatile candidate.

Hard skills and soft skills to showcase your unique skill set on your lawyer CV

Did you know that your CV will mostly likely be assessed by recruiters based on skill alignment? And that means that the way you feature your key skills across different CV sections will play a crucial role in landing you that first interview. We recommend you add your:

  • technical capabilities or hard skills in your CV experience, certificates, projects, etc. Use your past accomplishments to prove your technical capabilities. List up to a dozen different software or hardware in your dedicated skills section to match the job keywords;
  • personal and communication skills or soft skills in your CV strengths, achievements, summary/ objective, etc. Soft skills are a bit more difficult to prove. How do you define your aptitude in active listening? So, instead of just listing the skill name, include a tangible metric to show your success.

On a final note, when you're in a hurry to create your profile, you may misspell a particular technology or soft skill. That's why we suggest you copy and paste the particular skill name (or keyword), directly from the job advert. This would also help you to pass any initial Applicant Tracker System (ATS) tests.

Top skills for your lawyer CV:

Legal Research

Legal Writing


Contract Negotiation

Legal Compliance

Client Advising

Intellectual Property Law

Corporate Law

Criminal Law

Real Estate Law


Analytical Thinking

Problem Solving


Attention to Detail


Time Management

Client Service



Stress Management

pro tip icon

Use mini case studies or success stories in your CV to demonstrate how your skills have positively impacted previous roles or projects.

Further professional qualifications for your lawyer CV: education and certificates

As you're nearing the end of your lawyer CV, you may wonder what else will be relevant to the role. Recruiters are keen on understanding your academic background, as it teaches you an array of hard and soft skills. Create a dedicated education section that lists your:

  • applicable higher education diplomas or ones that are at a postgraduate level;
  • diploma, followed up with your higher education institution and start-graduation dates;
  • extracurricular activities and honours, only if you deem that recruiters will find them impressive.

Follow a similar logic when presenting your certificates. Always select ones that will support your niche expertise and hint at what it's like to work with you. Balance both technical certification with soft skills courses to answer job requirements and company values. Wondering what the most sought out certificates are for the industry? Look no further:

pro tip icon

If there's a noticeable gap in your skillset for the role you're applying for, mention any steps you're taking to acquire these skills, such as online courses or self-study.

Key takeaways

What matters most in your lawyer CV-writing process is for you to create a personalised application. One that matches the role and also showcases your unique qualities and talents.

  • Use the format to supplement the actual content, to stand out, and to ensure your CV experience is easy to comprehend and follows a logic;
  • Invest time in building a succinct CV top one third. One that includes a header (with your contact details and headline), a summary or an objective statement (select the one that best fits your experience), and - potentially - a dedicated skills section or achievements (to fit both hard skills and soft skills requirements);
  • Prioritise your most relevant (and senior) experience closer to the top of your CV. Always ensure you're following the "power verb, skill, and achievement" format for your bullets;
  • Integrate both your technical and communication background across different sections of your CV to meet the job requirements;
  • List your relevant education and certificates to fill in gaps in your CV history and prove to recrutiers you have relevant technical know-how.

Looking to build your own Lawyer CV?

Enhancv CV builder will help you create a modern, stand-out CV that gets results
Variety of custom sections
Hassle-free templates
Easy edits
Memorable design
Content suggestions
Author image
Volen Vulkov
Volen Vulkov is a resume expert and the co-founder of Enhancv. He applies his deep knowledge and experience to write about a career change, development, and how to stand out in the job application process.