So you want to be an energy lawyer

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Legal professionals in the energy sector can work across a wide variety of industries; whether it’s for global oil and gas companies, nuclear producers or producers of renewable energy.

You may work with anyone from governments to banks or from utilities to investors and could be involved in providing advice on planning and development as well as regulation. 
So what jobs are available and what experience and skills do you need? We look at the state of the current market.

The past two years has brought about high levels of demand within the energy sector, with employers typically looking for upstream experience when hiring. If you have been working within Western Africa and/ or across the Middle East, it is likely you will be in demand. Similarly, if you hold specialist experience within the energy sector, particularly within nuclear, renewables, solar or petroleum, your CV should attract a significant level of interest.

You may work with anyone from governments to banks or from utilities to investors and could be involved in providing advice on planning and development as well as regulation

Prepare to move in-house 

If you want to move in-house, the most important thing to do is to get as much commercial experience as possible so that you have specific knowledge of the energy industry. Additionally, you should also try to be as flexible as you can on location – if you’re prepared to relocate to more buoyant areas or even internationally, you will give yourself a much better chance of securing one of these jobs.

Moving from in-house to private practice

To be offered a private practice job, you’ll need strong transactional skills. Outside of this, experience of specific areas within energy will also be an advantage. At the senior level, you will be expected to bring a book of business with you.

At the same time, make sure that you are absolutely certain that you want to make the move. Within private practice, you will find a culture of billable hours and this often something lawyers need to become comfortable with. Similarly, private practice is an area in which you will be providing very detailed legal advice rather than commercial advice.

If you are looking for a career in Law and require more information please contact:

Kamran Habib, Country Manager (Middle East)
kamran.habib@robertwalters.com
+971 (0) 4 818 0101 

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