Lawyers act as an advocate, advisor, and counselor to the clients they represent. Not all lawyers represent clients in court – they do many other things like draft agreements between parties, settle legal disputes, give advice on incorporating businesses, and so on.


Market Demand

Estimates from the Malaysian Bar show that there are 6,939 law firms and 16,255 layers in the country to date. According to industry observers, employment for lawyers will continue grow in the next few years especially in the field of international law. Companies with global operations are in need of experienced lawyers who can help them settle disputes with rivals on the international stage. Most legal firms are focused on hiring senior- and partner-level lawyers with significant books of business in high-demand practice areas, including bankruptcy and foreclosure, employment law and litigation.

The outlook for international law suggests growth as this area of the law is expected to grow even faster than other areas. However, competition for these jobs is generally high due to the large number of law school graduates and the current economic climate that is forcing some firms to cut back on hiring. The available career paths for an international lawyer can be broken down into law firms, federal government, corporate counsel, international organizations and nonprofit groups. Private Law Firms handle most international business transactions, although the degree varies on the specialty of the firm.



A bachelor of laws (LL.B) takes three years to complete. After three years, you will either need to take the:

  • Certificate in Legal Practice (CLP) OR
  • Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC, previously the Bar Vocational Course)

These professional qualifications are necessary only if you are interested in practicing law.

BPTC is the second stage of training to becoming a lawyer. This is taken over one year full time. BPTC aims to give students the skills required for a career at the Bar. It is primarily a practical course including plenty of advocay and role-playing, as well as exercises in drafting legal documents and writing opinions. Assessment takes several forms and vary between institutions.

CLP is a compulsory requirement for Bachelor of Law graduates conferred by universities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and certain universities in Australia and New Zealand before they can practice law. The Legal Profession Qualifying Board of Malaysia has listed down the universities, click here. Graduates of these universities/institutions can apply and sit and pass the CLP examination.

Other skills that are highly recommended include foreign languages (French, German, Japanese, Russian and Spanish), research and writing skills, the, overseas experience, a strong interest in practicing law in an international setting, and knowledge of the basic differences in the worlds’ legal systems as well as their political and cultural contexts.


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