Go back twenty years, and it seemed as though the days of packing thousands of young law grads into the nation’s schools were at an end. But recent data suggests that it is actually the reverse. Legal professionals are facing massive demand, and supply is struggling to keep up.

The reasons for this mainly have to do with the shifting nature of the global economy. As regulations mount, intellectual property becomes more important and growing numbers of firms trade overseas, company bosses need people with niche legal expertise to protect them from risk. Tax and regulatory compliance are massive issues, and if companies don’t comply, they could face massive fines.

Legal careers, therefore, are both more lucrative and, arguably, enjoyable than they ever were in the past. There are diverse opportunities to work all over the world and in a variety of different fields.

Take a look at some of your options in the following infographic. Lawyers in training today can go into environment, intellectual property, securities, tax, and business, not to mention traditional areas, such as family and criminal law.

What’s more, there are plenty of schools willing to take on people with the right background. USC, for instance, offers programs for people who want to go into niche areas, such as health compliance.

The great thing about the current structure of the industry is that it makes it easy for people to grow their own niche legal firms. All you do is get a specialty, and then you’re virtually ready to go.

Infographic by USC

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