It often happens that people consider the profession of lawyer, advocate, barrister and attorney, as common. But in general, there is a difference between these. Being a law student or an active person in the legal field, one must know the difference between them. To make you all understand it in easy words, here is an article that addresses the difference between a lawyer, advocate, barrister and attorney.
Any person who is studying to get a law degree or who has completed a law degree can be called a lawyer. Besides, any person who has been trained in law is termed a lawyer. He may be a legal adviser, a consultant, an academician, an in-house legal counsellor in a corporate firm. And, he may draft documents such as wills, contracts, deeds, and more.
Advocates are the lawyers who qualify for the Bar Council Exam according to the Advocates Act, 1961. In simpler words, an advocate is a person within the legal profession who possesses a law degree and also represents his clients in the court of law. He represents his client to help them win the case and avoid the sentence or be compensated, depending upon the client’s status, i.e. whether the client is an accused or the complainant. The advocates are protected under the Advocates Act, 1961. Also, several rights of an advocate are protected under the Advocates Act, 1961.
Any person who acquires a degree of law from England is known as a barrister. He is an expert advocate. They give specialist legal advice or guidance in particular areas of law. Mostly, the barristers are self-employed and function in chambers with other barristers so that the cost of settlement and officials can be shared by them. Further, they can also be employed in-house as advisers (consultants) by banks, corporations, companies, and solicitors firms.
The chief legal advisor to the Government of India and the primary lawyer in the Supreme Court of India are called attorneys. The appointment of an attorney is performed by the President of India, and he holds his office at the pleasure of the President. The Indian President also decides the remuneration of an attorney.
He advises the Government of India on legal issues that are entrusted to him by the President. An attorney is also expected to appear in the Supreme Court and the High Court on behalf of the government in all such cases in which the government of India is concerned. This includes suits, appeals and other proceedings as well.
An attorney has the right of audience in all the courts in the territory of India. He also has a right to speak and take an active part in proceedings of both the houses of the Parliament. Although he is privileged with all the immunities that a member of Parliament has, he does not have a right to vote. Further, he is restricted to take an appointment as a director in any company.