Lawyer Facts
Lawyer Facts

26 Fascinating Lawyer Facts

James Israelsen
By James Israelsen, Associate Writer
Published August 8, 2022
  • In most class action lawsuits, members of the suing class are only ever issued coupons as a form of recompense, while the lawyers trying the suit are the recipients of the actual money paid out.[6]
  • The first female lawyer in the United States started practicing law in the 1860s.[11]
  • The first law schools to accept female applicants were Washington University, the University of Iowa, Northwestern, Boston University, Hastings College, and the University of Michigan.[11]
  • John Grisham, a lawyer in a small Mississippi town, writes wildly successful legal thrillers and has sold over 300 million copies of his novels in 40 different languages.[12]
  • Some of American lawyer Clarence Darrow's most famous cases include defending the young killers Loeb and Leopold, and the Scopes trial, in which he defended a high school teacher who taught the theory of evolution in his classroom.[5]
  • In the United States, the job of lawyer ranks #1 among the best social service jobs.[3]
  • In 2020, the highest paid American lawyers made almost $200,000 a year, whereas the lowest paid made less than $85,000.[3]
  • Coffee Lawsuit
    Don't spill it
  • Reed Morgan, the lawyer who successfully sued MacDonald's on behalf of a client who spilled her coffee on herself, already had experience in suing companies over spilled hot liquids.[6]
  • Lawyers in the United States have to earn a Juris Doctor degree, which usually requires three years of law school.[3]
  • In the United States, lawyers are the third-least trusted professionals, trusted by only 18% of the population and ranking only better than lobbyists and business executives.[8]
  • In the United States, May the 1st is celebrated as Law Day.[10]
  • Of the 55 delegates who attended the Constitutional Convention that led to the American Revolution, 35 were lawyers.[10]
  • Mohandas Gandhi, who defended the rights of Indians under British Rule in India, originally trained as a lawyer in London.[10]
  • The first African American Supreme Court justice was lawyer Thurgood Marshall, who was made a member of the Supreme Court in 1967.[10]
  • The first black law firm in South Africa was established by Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo in 1952.[10]
  • Abraham Lincoln Lawyer
    Even Lincoln lost sometimes
  • While a lawyer, Abraham Lincoln only ever argued one case in front of the U.S. Supreme Court—which he lost.[10]
  • Janet Reno, a Harvard law graduate, was the first woman to become attorney general of the United States.[10]
  • Lawyer Sandra Day O'Connor became the first female Supreme Court justice in 1952.[10]
  • Wichai Thantang of Hong Kong is currently the wealthiest lawyer in the world, with a net worth of $1.8 billion.[1]
  • Some of the United States' most frivolous lawsuits include a judge who sued his dry cleaner for $67 million for sending his pants to the wrong location; a man who claimed that Anhueser-Busch's ads misrepresented the attractiveness that he would have in women's eyes if he drank their beer; and a magician who claimed that David Copperfield stole his divine powers.[4]
  • Although the words "lawyer" and "attorney" can generally be used interchangeably, technically, a lawyer is anyone who has graduated from law school and can give legal advice, while an attorney has both graduated from law school and passed the bar, meaning they can legally practice law in court.[9]
  • In Britain, the honorary title "esquire" is only used for men who rank one step below a knight; in the United States, the title can be applied to or used by any lawyer.[9]
  • The first lawyers to earn a living by giving legal advice were men within the late Roman Empire.[2]
  • Roman Lawyers
    The great Roman lawyer Cicero is portrayed here

  • Half of all law school students in the United States are women; more than a fifth identify themselves as belonging to a minority ethnic group.[2]
  • As of 2022, there are 1,328,000 lawyers who have passed the bar and are actively practicing law in the United States.[7]
  • The state with the most lawyers is New York, followed by California and then Texas.[7]
  • Interesting Lawyer INFOGRAPHIC
    Lawyer Infographic Thumbnail

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