Legal television programs frequently depict the highs of the legal profession and have influenced the public’s decision to enter the legal profession. But which programs have the biggest impact? How precise are they, too?
EM Law discovered some interesting motivations for those who pursued legal careers after conducting in-depth research into those individuals and what drove them to do so.
Over 50% of respondents said that watching legal TV shows helped them decide on a career
39% of those surveyed “agreed” that their favourite legal TV shows had an influence on their decision to pursue a career in law, and 11% “strongly agreed” that they did.
The director of EM Law and a specialist in commercial law, Neil Williamson, said, “It’s very interesting to see how many lawyers were influenced by legal TV shows when making their career choice.
‘This Life’, which debuted while some members of our team were still in law school, was one program they most identified with. A follow-up on our screens would be welcome! “
Most respondents (more than 56%) cited their “genuine passion for the law” as the prime motivator for pursuing a legal career
Over half of the survey participants said that their genuine passion for the field inspired them to practice law. Given that the average lawyer’s salary in the UK is £51,000, it should come as no surprise that financial desires were the second most common factor, with over 31% of respondents saying that money was the primary factor in their decision to pursue a legal career.
“Suits” was cited by 30% of respondents as having influenced their decision to pursue a career
According to the survey, Suits was the most influential TV program. Suits, which is set in a New York law office, tells the tale of an associate who ends up working for one of the best attorneys in the area. Law & Order came in second place with 22% of the vote. Legal TV shows often show the highs of working in law and have played a huge part in influencing the public to pursue a career in the legal sector. But, which shows are the most influential? And how accurate are they?
Over 57% of respondents said they thought their preferred TV show accurately represented a career in law
Just over 57% of those surveyed believed that the high and low-stakes legal TV show scenarios reflected what they had actually experienced. The shows, in the opinion of the remaining 43%, deviated from reality. Out of the participants polled, 39% “agreed” that their favourite legal TV shows swayed their decision to pursue a career in law, while 11% “strongly agreed” they had an impact.
If given the chance, 30% of respondents said they would switch to a career unrelated to legal services.
Despite choosing a career in law for different reasons, just under a third would swap jobs if the opportunity arose. 70% of the participants were happy in their current role and will continue to live out their law ambitions.
About EM law: Founded in 2013, EM Law started with one lawyer and one small client. Fast forward to today and they’ve helped hundreds of organisations and individuals do business, overcome challenges, and achieve their goals.