As a lawyer, you need to be an expert in your field in order to successfully navigate the complicated waters of the legal ocean.

So what’s the best route to take? If you’re an aspiring lawyer just starting on your journey, there are a lot of options.

You can rely on your interests, what is in-demand at the time, and what is most lucrative to point you in the right direction. Here are 16 fruitful, promising areas of law for you to consider.

1. Complex Litigation

This is an area of law that demands a lot of patience and incredible attention to detail. Complex litigation is one of the more lucrative specializations because they involve high-stakes, corporate lawsuits and a lot of motions filed in court. The cases can last a long time, so if you like working toward a significantly large payoff, this route may be for you.

2. Corporate Law

Corporate law also handles business affairs, but it is more concerned with day-to-day, typical practices. Things like contracts, compliance, and liability fall under this umbrella. Lawyers specializing in this practice area can help a business get off the ground with its initial paperwork, or help them navigate difficult situations like bankruptcy.

3. Tax Law

Tax law is complex and always evolving, so it is an exciting practice area to enter. Tax attorneys can help guide people through audits and other issues with the IRS, as well as with estate planning. This specialization is also very lucrative, with some lawyers making up to $190,00 annually.

4. Intellectual Property

In the age of the internet, intellectual property (IP) is more important than ever before. From trademarks, to copyrights, to patents, and beyond, lawyers who work in IP help people protect their ideas and projects from duplication or theft.

5. Blockchain

Last year brought blockchain and bitcoin into the zeitgeist in a big way. As more people begin to understand these technologies, attorneys with knowledge of the topic will be increasingly valuable. If you can get in on the ground floor of this practice area, your opportunities are bound to grow.

6. Healthcare

It’s been a hot topic for quite some time, and healthcare laws in the US are still in flux. Therefore, professionals who are up to date on regulations and can navigate the landscape successfully will reap the benefits.

7. Environmental

Climate change is very much an issue that will increase in importance during our lifetimes. As we continue to figure out how to protect our environment effectively and regulations develop to reflect the necessary adjustments, lawyers in this practice area will be essential.

8. Criminal

Whether you want to be a defense lawyer or prosecutor, criminal law is full of opportunity. The lawyers in this practice area see a lot of courtroom drama while they protect the basic rights of their clients.

9. Civil Rights

Also dealing with basic human rights, civil rights attorneys do extremely important work. They sometimes work for nonprofits, but often work in other practice areas while taking these cases pro bono.

10. Animal Rights

As an attorney working in animal rights, you can be the voice for our furry friends who can’t speak for themselves. You can work against those who harm or exploit these creatures, and help the organizations who work to give them a better life.

11. Immigration

Another important practice area deals with asylum/refugee law, business immigration law, and criminal/deportation defense. This topic is also very high-visibility right now, and it gives you a platform to do great work on behalf of others.

12. Sports and Entertainment

This specialization includes contract negotiation and disputes, IP law, compensation and royalties, and more. You could be dealing with some big-name clients if you find success, so it’s important for you to avoid getting intimidated.

13. Labor

Workers’ rights are always evolving, and so lawyers are always in-demand in this practice area. From sexual harassment to benefits and compensation, attorneys can find a range of cases in this discipline.

14. Family Law

The cases in family and juvenile law are also incredibly diverse. From adoption to domestic abuse, attorneys can see a wide range of situations – some great and some awful. But either way, lawyers who choose to go into this field will make a positive impact on these people’s lives with their work.

15. Elder Law

As Baby Boomers are reaching retirement age and people’s life expectancy goes up, the need to protect some of the more vulnerable elders increases. This can include insurance, wills, estate planning, guardianship, and beyond.

16. Education

If actively practicing law doesn’t seem to fit anymore, you can always go into education, teaching law to students. Being a professor at a law school can give you an opportunity to help people entering the field, giving them the tools to succeed.

If you’re looking for a new position in the legal profession, browse our job listings. When you apply, one of our expert consultants will reach out with relevant opportunities.