International Law

How Studying Abroad can Enhance your Career as an International Lawyer

By: Mark Thomas (WFU J.D. alumnus)

In international law practice, every attorney must act as a “translator”. This role has at least two levels. There is, of course, the level of “translating” the law of one country into a clear and accurate explanation that persons from other countries can understand and apply effectively to their own circumstances, such as a business transaction, a need for a work visa, or the like. There is also a second and very important level: “translating” the cultural and social perspectives of one country to persons from other countries, so that those persons may understand the expectations and viewpoints that the first country’s people bring to the legal transactions. A simple example is the way in which different peoples negotiate business agreements. Those persons do not negotiate in a vacuum, but are influenced by their cultural and social experiences in the way they perceive themselves and the ways in which others interact with them. To successfully represent parties in all international transactions, these cultural and social influences need to be better understood and intelligently analyzed. Continue reading »