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Career Opportunities in Law and Medicine


For those of us struggling to choose between law and medicine, there are a plethora of enjoyable careers that integrate both subjects. The similarities between medicine and law are infinite, and the overlap prevalent between legal and medical issues allows for the innovation of necessary and prospering occupations.


Forensic Psychologist

Forensic psychology refers to the application of psychological/medical principles in the unraveling or prevention of a crime. Forensic psychologists may become involved in lawsuits, disputes, insurance quarrels, transgressions, etc.


Education


The first and foremost step in becoming a forensic psychologist is earning a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. There, most students major in psychology and minor in a law-related subject (e.g. criminology).


As an optional step, students may earn a Master’s degree from the said institution, forging an alleyway towards specializations in either the medical or legal aspects of forensic psychology.


Next, it is recommended to earn a Ph.D. or a Psy.D. If you are seeking a more research-oriented career, a Ph.D. is recommended; if you wish to interact with patients, a Psy.D is recommended.


It is also crucial to obtain licensure, as it enables the forensic psychologist to speak in court and assess the competency of individuals involved in the misdemeanor at hand. Requirements do vary by state but typically include a Doctorate and one’s passing of the Examination for Professional Practice of Psychology.


Lastly, it is optional but advised to earn Board Certification. This is accomplished by applying for certification via the American Board of Forensic Psychology (ABFM). If you plan on applying for certification, you must have completed or obtained a Doctoral Degree, Licensure, 100 hours of formal education, and 1,000 hours of practical experience.


Responsibilities

  • Identify patterns through studying human characteristics and behavior.

  • Engage in research, analyze data, and form conclusions.

  • Work with and advise police agencies and investigators.

  • Perform behavior and personality assessments and test competency.

  • Provide courtroom testimony.


The average salary for a forensic psychologist is $72,766. Additionally, forensic psychologists are expected to have a growth of 2%.


The career outlined above has a large emphasis on medicine, as the worker is a licensed psychologist who must evaluate people related to the crime. The career outlined below will have an emphasis on the legal side of medicine, with the worker serving as a lawyer who specializes in malpractice.


Medical Malpractice Attorney



Medical malpractice refers to the litigation that takes place after a healthcare professional engages in an act of intentional or unintentional negligence or tort. A medical malpractice lawyer defends the client or patient that has been negatively affected by the actions of the medical professional and argues to receive compensation for the act.


Education


To become a medical malpractice attorney, you must earn a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. Most students major in a law-related subject; however, there is not a specific course of action or specific classes to be taken.


Next, students must use the information they acquired in pre-law classes to take the LSAT or the Law School Admission Test. This test is administered by the Law School Admission Council. It tests the proficiency and competency of law school applicants.


After passing the LSAT, aspiring medical malpractice attorneys should attend law school, as approved by the American Bar Association. The first year of law school is filled with information regarding criminal and civil law, tort law, property, etc. The second and third years of law school allow students to select elective courses that align with their specializations. Upon graduating from law school, students earn a J.D or Juris Doctor, a process that takes approximately 3 years.


Moreover, the Bar Exam tests the knowledge a law student should possess before being declared competent to practice law in their state. It does vary from state to state, but most timeframes consist of multiple days of testing. Passing this test results in licensure and regulates one’s scope of practice.


Lastly, lawyers must earn Board Certification via the American Board for Professional Liability Attorneys. Requirements for this include documentation of experience and involvement in medical malpractice cases within the past 3 years.


Responsibilities

  • Set up IMEs or independent medical examinations to gain an understanding of the victim’s injuries.

  • Engage and work with health professionals to gather evidence for the patient’s case.

  • This includes taking dispositions of medical personnel and witnesses.

  • Perform medical research about the patient’s injury or the nature of the case.


The average salary for a medical malpractice attorney is above $95,000. Medical malpractice attorneys are also expected to have a growth of 6%


Resources

CareerExplorer. “What Does a Forensic Psychologist Do?” CareerExplorer, CareerExplorer, 14

Nov. 2019, www.careerexplorer.com/careers/forensic-psychologist/.

Kane, Sally. “What Is a Medical Malpractice Lawyer?” The Balance Careers,

www.thebalancecareers.com/medical-malpractice-lawyer-2164278.

Learn.org -, learn.org/articles/medical_malpractice_lawyer_career_requirements.html.

“Take Online Courses. Earn College Credit. Research Schools, DEGREES & Careers.”

Study.com | Take Online Courses. Earn College Credit. Research Schools, Degrees &

Careers,

study.com/articles/Become_a_Medical_Malpractice_Lawyer_Step-by-Step_Career_Gui

e.html.

“Take Online Courses. Earn College Credit. Research Schools, DEGREES & Careers.”

Study.com | Take Online Courses. Earn College Credit. Research Schools, Degrees &

Careers, study.com/articles/careers_involving_law_and_medicine.html.

“What Is a Criminal Profiler? Key Job Duties and Skills.” Job Search,

www.indeed.com/hire/c/info/what-is-a-profiler.