Law Practice

More Career Choices for Women Lawyers

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Women lawyers are moving into a broader range of practice areas as traditional expectations about appropriate legal career choices for female attorneys are erased.

It is now commonplace to see women in intellectual property, health care, and financial and investment services practices, reports Crain’s Detroit Business, noting that some 44 percent of the associates and 19 percent of the partners in Detroit law firms are now female.

A generation ago, career choices for most female lawyers were much more limited, says Leslie Banas. Now a senior partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn, she recalls being the first woman lawyer hired at another law firm at which she previously worked.

“Women who graduated with me mostly gravitated, or were placed, into family-law litigation, estate planning or insurance defense, if they were litigators. They spoke to clients mostly to prepare wills, trusts and guardianships,” says Banas. “Those were practice areas for women, and the law firms may have even channeled them there.”

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