Mergers and acquisitions attorneys work in law firms that specialize in handling mergers and acquisitions transactions for corporations. Some may work in-house at the corporations but more often they are employed as outside counsel. Companies in industries such as health care, financial services, manufacturing, retail, and technology hire mergers and acquisitions lawyers to guide them through complex business transactions. There are 823,900 lawyers employed in the United States, including mergers and acquisitions attorneys, according to the Department of Labor.
Many mergers and acquisitions lawyers participate in internship programs while in school, gaining valuable work experience and the possibility of a job offer if they perform well. Law firms and corporations also recruit new attorneys while they are in law school. Entry-level jobs for lawyers who have just passed the bar exam are usually associate positions, which entail research, administrative work, and other tasks to assist the mergers and acquisitions legal team. Mergers and acquisitions attorneys also find job openings through their state bar association as well as by searching for job openings online and contacting companies directly.
Associate mergers and acquisition attorneys with three or more years of experience successfully handling mergers and acquisitions transactions may advance to become full attorneys. After years of taking the lead in corporate mergers and acquisitions, attorneys assume senior roles, overseeing and managing staff and handling more complex transactions. Well-seasoned attorneys may eventually become partners in their law firm. Those with this level of experience focus on developing new business as well as maintaining relationships with current clients. Some mergers and acquisitions attorneys leave full-time jobs to start their own law firms and consultancies. Others may teach in colleges and write for law journals.
While in law school, get a summer position in a law firm that specializes in mergers and acquisitions. Search for job openings online or ask your law school's career services office for assistance in your search.
Find articles, information about upcoming meetings and events, and other useful information on the American Bar Association's Mergers and Acquisitions Committee Web site, https://www.americanbar.org/groups/business_law/committees/ma.
Keep up with mergers and acquisitions news and trends by visiting these Web sites:
Read the mergers and acquisitions section of the The National Law Review for industry news and analysis of legal and regulatory developments: https://www.natlawreview.com/type-law/mergers-acquisitions.