Results of YLS Survey on Specialization/Relicensing

by Mark A. Peterson

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A survey of readers of [Barrister Magazine] shows support among young lawyers for programs to recognize legal specialties and relicense lawyers. Respondents valued specialization both as a means for providing better legal services and as an attractive feature for lawyers. They showed a strong preference for programs of certification rather than self-designation, requiring attendance at continuing legal education courses and some form of screening to determine which lawyers should be recognized as specialists. Most were willing to grant recognized specialists special opportunities to inform the public of their specialty status. Despite this support for specialization programs, some lawyers indicated concern that specialization programs would adversely affect their own practice. There was also strong support for relicensing programs. Most felt that lawyers need to improve or refresh their substantive knowledge of the law and the professional skills used in legal practice. They also supported mandatory continuing education courses to improve the quality of legal practice. 14 pp.

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