A Guide on How to Become a Corporate Lawyer

Pursuing a legal career in the Philippines opens a list of opportunities for aspiring lawyers. Aside from opening avenues for a career in politics, there are a lot of other fields you can go into. In fact, learning how to be a corporate lawyer is one of the most sought-after career paths in the legal industry.

So, in this guide, we talk about what corporate lawyers do and how to become one. Let this blog be a guide to your career as a legal professional in the private sector.

female corporate lawyer

What Do Corporate Lawyers Do?

A corporate lawyer in the Philippines plays an important role in providing legal guidance and support to businesses. It’s one of the most stable, recession-proof jobs as businesses often need legal guidance regardless of the economic climate of the country.

The scope of a corporate attorney’s work is diverse, encompassing different aspects of corporate law. Some of the key responsibilities and functions they perform are:

  • Business Formation and Compliance: Corporate lawyers assist in the establishment of businesses, including drafting articles of incorporation and bylaws. They ensure compliance with Philippine corporate laws and regulations.
  • Contract Drafting and Review: Company lawyers draft, review, and negotiate contracts on behalf of the organization. They ensure that contractual agreements align with legal requirements and protect the interests of the business.
  • Corporate Governance: Private attorneys advise businesses on corporate governance matters, including the structure and functioning of boards of directors and corporate officers. They implement best practices to ensure ethical conduct and compliance with regulations.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A): When company groups merge, corporate lawyers facilitate the legal aspects of the acquisitions and corporate restructuring. They conduct due diligence to assess legal risks and compliance issues in M&A transactions.
  • Securities Law Compliance: A part of a company attorney’s task is to guide compliance with securities laws, especially for organizations involved in public offerings or listed on the stock exchange. They advise on disclosure requirements and shareholder rights.
  • Intellectual Property Protection: Private lawyers assist in the protection and management of intellectual property rights. They address legal issues related to trademarks, patents, and copyrights.
  • Commercial Transactions: Corporate lawyers also oversee the legal aspects of commercial transactions, including sales, partnerships, and joint ventures. Their advice on the legal implications of business decisions is essential for a company’s sustainability and strategies.
  • Employment Law: One of the most important tasks of company attorneys is advising on employment contracts, termination issues, and labor law compliance. They work on resolving employment disputes and ensuring adherence to labor regulations.
  • Corporate Litigation: If there are any legal proceedings, private lawyers are the ones to represent the company. They handle corporate disputes, contract breaches, and other litigation matters.

Corporate lawyers in the Philippines often work in law firms, corporate legal departments, or as in-house counsel for large corporations. Their expertise extends to both contentious and non-contentious matters, showcasing the dynamic nature of the profession.

How to Become a Corporate Attorney in the Philippines

The journey to becoming a corporate lawyer in the Philippines involves a well-defined roadmap for aspiring legal professionals.

law book and glasses

Educational Foundation

In the Philippines, pursuing a career as a lawyer begins by earning a bachelor’s degree in a related field such as law, political science, or business. This forms the foundation for your legal studies, teaching you the basics of law and governance.

After obtaining an undergraduate degree, you then pursue a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from a recognized law school accredited by the Legal Education Board (LEB). Your law school education provides you with theoretical and practical knowledge of the intricacies of law.

Bar Examinations

Upon getting your JD degree, aspiring corporate lawyers still need to pass the Philippine Bar Examination. This rigorous exam tests your knowledge across various legal fields, identifying whether you’re fit to practice law. Once you’ve successfully passed the bar exam, you’re admitted to the Philippine Bar and receive your license to practice.

gaining experience in law

Gain Practical Experience

Seeking internships with law firms, corporate legal departments, or government offices lets you gain practical insights into corporate law practice. It allows you to build a professional network by connecting with established corporate lawyers, attending legal events, and participating in relevant seminars.

Specialization and Continuing Education

Once you’ve gained experience, consider specializing in corporate law through your postgraduate studies to enhance your expertise in this field. Getting a master’s in public administration online can prove to be beneficial in expanding your knowledge base on governance while allowing you to continue your professional career.

And if you’re wondering if an MPA degree is worth it, the answer is simply yes. Continuing your legal education lets you stay updated with changes in corporate law.

Professional Licensure

To continue practicing law in the country, you also have to apply for membership with the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. This licensure is a mandatory requirement for local legal practitioners, in pursuit of elevating the standards of the legal profession and improving the administration of justice.

law professional organizations

Join Professional Organizations

Become a member of organizations like the Philippine Bar Association to connect with peers, access resources, and stay informed about industry developments. Doing so can build your network as a corporate lawyer and open various opportunities for career development. Not only do you strengthen your connection with relevant names in corporate law, but you also showcase your professional capabilities.

Build a Strong Resume

Gain experience through legal practice to develop your skills in contract drafting, corporate governance, and mergers and acquisitions. Relevant career experiences can significantly boost your employability and attract potential recruiters. Plus, joining and highlighting your participation in relevant workshops, seminars, or additional certifications improves your credibility as a lawyer.

Achieving Career Success with Postgrad

Knowing how to become a corporate lawyer in the Philippines is essential in your pursuit of this career. This professional path demands academic excellence, practical experience, and a commitment to continuous learning.

If you’re looking to develop your career as a corporate lawyer, consider partnering with Postgrad and enrolling in our flexible online postgrad programs.  With our faculty of experienced legal professionals, we can support your career aspirations and push you to flourish as a corporate lawyer.

Learn more about our courses on our website or contact us today!

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