Criminal Lawyers



Criminal law focuses on crime, that is, acts committed in violation of a law. This field of law is concerned with an individual’s relation to society. In fact, criminal acts are considered offenses against all members of a society even if the acts were committed against only one person. Anyone who breaks criminal laws may be punished with prison time or fines. Two types of lawyers are employed in the field of criminal law: prosecuting attorneys (also known as district attorneys and by other titles), who represent the cities...

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

Law Degree



Internship or judicial clerkship highly recommended





Personality Traits



Entry-level prosecutors at the local level earned median annual salaries of $56,000 in 2018, according to the National Association for Law Placement. Those employed for five years earned $66,300, while those with 11–15 years on the job made $84,400. The association reports the following median salaries for public defenders in 2018 by level of experience: entry-level, $58,300; five years, $68,00...

Work Environment

The workplace for prosecutors can be as varied as the type of cases assigned. Their offices are comfortable and well-lit, but prosecutors only spend a fraction of their time in the office. They often conduct research at law libraries, interview police officers and criminal investigators at police stations, meet with social workers and other specialists, and travel to the scene of an alleged cri...


Employment for lawyers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations from 2018 to 2028, according to U.S. Department of Labor. It reports that “federal government is likely to continue to need lawyers to prosecute or defend civil cases on behalf of the United States, prosecute criminal cases brought by the federal government, and collect money owed to the federal governme...