Areas of Legal Practice

The first step in finding a Visalia lawyer is to determine the TYPE of lawyer you require. In the same way doctors are trained in specific areas, lawyers can also concentrate in particular areas. A foot doctor would not be qualified to perform brain surgery. The same goes for a bankruptcy lawyer who would not be qualified to represent you in a criminal case.


What are the various areas of legal practice?


Administrative Law

Administrative Law is a section of public law that regulates the ongoings and processes of bureaucratic government agencies. These agencies can be responsible for policymaking, forming judgments, and enforcing regulations. Administrative Law's purpose is to protect the public interests in dealings with government agencies and prevent abuses of authority.


Arbitration - Alternative Dispute Resolution

Arbitration, also called Alternative Dispute Resolution, uses an arbitrator (an appointed entity) to settle disputes without going to court. The arbitrator will examine evidence and hear both sides present their case. After hearing the evidence, the arbitrator makes a binding or non-binding decision. Arbitration is designed to save time and money for the involved parties. 


Antitrust and Trade Regulation

Trade Regulation and Antitrust Laws are in place to protect businesses from unfair restrictions and promote a vibrant market. Many people believe that consumers couldn't afford quality goods and services if there weren't antitrust laws. When a business disagrees with the practices of another business, such as a merger that creates an industry monopoly, antitrust lawyers can be hired.


Appellate Practice

The appellate practice is deliberately different from trial practice. It seeks to reverse a previous unfavorable decision, or in some cases, to protect a successful judgment. Appellate courts are empowered to reverse lower court decisions. These appeals are often considered precedent.



Couples, individuals, and businesses who are insolvent can file bankruptcy. The intent is to have their debts dismissed (Chapter 7) or reconstructed (Chapter 11), or given extra time for payment (Chapter 13). The debtor must sell off any non-exempt property so proceeds can go to creditors in a liquidation bankruptcy. Reorganization bankruptcy situations require debtors to follow a creditor's installment payment plan, but they can keep their property.


Business Law

The practice of business law, also called corporate or commercial law, focuses on building new businesses and managing many business aspects. It includes topics such as the regulation of hiring practices and corporate agreements, which govern the sale and manufacture of consumer goods and services, intellectual property, and copyright protection.


Civil Practice

There is a clear division between "civil" and "criminal" legal cases. A "civil practice" handles legal matters that are not the state trying to "penalized" an individual while protecting the general public (criminal prosecution). Also, review "General Practice" below.


Civil Rights

Civil rights law concentrates on protecting the rights of citizens, so they aren't discriminated against based on race and gender, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, or any other factor. These civil rights include protection from both government and private entities. As society learns more about the discrimination of certain classes, civil rights lawyers work to pass new legislation.



If creditors fail to collect funds on an unpaid account, collections lawyers are usually hired. Collection agents differ from collection lawyers since they can't file lawsuits for their clients. Collections lawyers are not only appointed by creditors but also by individuals. If a pre-bankruptcy client needs advice about proceeding with outstanding debts, a Collections Lawyer must be familiar with bankruptcy laws and processes.


Commercial Law

(Refer to Business Law).


Construction Law

Construction law covers extensive legal topics such as contracts and bonds, guarantees, liens and permits, negligence, and many other issues. Because all levels of government have a say in construction regulations, legal problems may occur under federal, state, or local laws.



Contract law interprets and implements agreements between parties regarding the exchange of goods or services. Even if verbally agreed to, a legally binding agreement between two or more parties stipulates that they will execute some action in return for benefit or gain.


Corporate Law

(See Business Law).


Criminal Law

Criminal law relates to the branch of law that handles the punishment and rehabilitation of those who have violated laws. Moreover, those who have engaged in dangerous or threatening acts towards another person's (or their own) health and safety, moral welfare, or property.


Creditor and Debtor

Avoidance of bankruptcy court is the primary purpose for Debtor and Creditor lawyers. They assist their clients in controlling their debt to keep them solvent. Credit satisfaction (debt priority and liens), exact credit extension processes, and consumer rights concerning debt collection are some of the main tasks addressed.



Family Law lawyers handle divorce when spouses request to end their legal and financial relationship. A few main areas of divorce include child custody, spouse and child support, and asset distribution.



Education law covers all aspects of schools. These topics incorporate students' and teachers' rights, conduct, discipline, school safety, special education and discrimination, curriculum, and many other issues. Education law is founded on two cornerstones: enhancing opportunity for quality education and advocating for more inclusive access to higher education.


Employee Benefits

Employee benefits law is the area of law that counsels employers on a wide range of topics to remain compliant with new laws and regulations. Guidance on employer fiduciary duties and tax issues, as well as drafting and planning documents related to retirement plans, are just a few of these topics.



The production and implementation laws related to energy creation, harvesting, usage, and taxation are the central purposes of energy law. It covers licensing, ownership rights, as well as adjudication.


Entertainment and The Arts

Entertainment law, better known as media law, encompasses television, film, publishing, advertising, and music. It handles the negotiation and drafting of contracts, among other services. Copyrights and trademarks are just a few of the many aspects which overlap with parts of intellectual property law.


Environmental Law

Environmental law covers various topics such as water and air quality, pollution and waste management, and hunting and fishing. It also regulates the use of natural resources by citizens to preserve the environment.


Family Law

Family law deals with marriage and divorce, civil unions and domestic partnerships, plus adoption and custody matters. It also deals with juvenile law issues such as delinquency and emancipation.



Due to the steadfast advancement in the financial side of business, finance law requires exceptionally skillful and educated lawyers. Finance law doesn't just apply to financial intuitions and banks. A financial lawyer could be used by big corporations to organize mergers or stocks and investments. Alternately, a financial lawyer could also be used by a small business during a start-up, ensuring that the company satisfies all legal and financial responsibilities.


General Practice

Like a general practitioner in medicine, a general practice lawyer does not specialize in any one area but instead handles non-complex legal matters within various areas. Bankruptcy, family law, estate planning, and real estate are just a few common areas for a general practice lawyer.



Government lawyers are not limited to a specific location or area of law. They can practice at the local, state, or federal level and within any city or state. Advocating for mass populations of citizens or governmental organizations, rather than individuals or corporations, is their primary focus.


Health Care

The law governing health care covers who should receive healthcare and who is responsible for payment. Patients can get help from health care lawyers in obtaining benefits and long-term care planning. They ensure that patient's rights, including privacy and consent, are protected.



Insurance law is not just about the rules and regulations of insurance companies but also the contents of the policy and claims. Due to the many industries covered by insurance law, lawyers from other fields tend to have a working knowledge of it. Some of the more common related areas of insurance law are automobile, homeowners, health, and life.  


Insurance Defense

Insurance companies hire insurance defense lawyers when a client is being sued for alleged violations of their policy. An insurance defense lawyer will verify any claims against an insured to ensure that it is covered under their policy. An insurance defense lawyer may work directly for the insurance company or for a law practice working with them.


Intellectual Property/Copyright/Patent

Intellectual property law allows people and companies to invent new products for the benefit of all. It also protects the creator's interests. Although copyrights and patents are two types, they are not limited to products. Non-physical intellectual property such as trade secrets are also valuable and need protecting.


International Law

International law, also known as the law of nations, refers to relations between countries. It encompasses commonly accepted standards and principles to which they all must adhere. International law covers areas of international concern like human rights, migration and refugees, and disarmament, plus world issues like global trade, the space program, and international waters.


Labor and Employment

Labor law, also known as employment law, regulates the relationship between employers and employees. It aims to ensure that workers and owners are treated with respect and fairness. Labor law covers all phases of an employee's employment journey. From interview to termination, it protects both the employer and the employee by determining the safety and compensation conditions and dealing with discrimination and unfair labor practices.


Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility

When entering the legal profession, lawyers and law firms must adhere to a particular code of ethics. Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law ensures that businesses and individuals follow these laws and represent them when questioned. Anyone who accuses a lawyer or practice of misconduct can hire a Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility lawyer.



If a company or individual needs representation in a civil case, they will appoint Litigation Attorneys. Although Litigation Attorneys are sometimes called Trial Attorneys, many steps must be taken between the initial filing and the trial. These include exploration, motions depositions, discovery, discovery, and so on. A Litigation attorney protects the client's interests and acts as their advocate throughout the proceedings.


Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice law deals with healthcare providers' liability when they cause harm to patients. Medical malpractice lawyers attempt to recover damages for the client's distress, including emotional and physical suffering, lost wages, future earning potential, and medical costs.


Mergers, Acquisitions, and Divestitures

Businesses safeguard themselves while either purchasing a whole company or joining two companies into one new by employing a Mergers and Acquisitions Attorney. A divestitures attorney is needed when a company attempts to sell off additional assets. Mergers, Acquisitions, and Divestitures law's primary goal is to make sure both parties complete due diligence before finalizing any deals. They also confirm that all documents are filed correctly with the appropriate federal and state agencies after completion.


Naturalization and Immigration

An Immigration and Naturalization lawyer can work for both individuals and companies. An Immigration lawyer can help individuals looking to move to the US or those in the deportation process. Consequently, companies with international staff may require work visas and residency or citizenship assistance. An advantage for Immigration and Naturalization lawyers is the ability to communicate in multiple languages, especially when working with individuals whose primary language may not be English.



Negligence is when a person, or business, acts without a level of care, resulting in injury or damage to another. Negligence law must assess all aspects of the case to determine that one party neglected to fulfill their responsibility to the other, in turn causing the damage in question. The Negligence lawyers must also prove that the client sustained injury or damage within the range of their duty.


Personal Injury

A Personal Injury Lawyer is hired when the negligence of another harms an individual or organization. Personal injury isn't always physical (such as a car accident, assault, or medical mishap). It could also affect your mental or emotional welfare. Seeking compensation or attempting to recover lost funds because of neglect is the primary purpose of personal injury lawsuits.



The estate of a person includes both their private and tangible property. Estate law is about preparing and handling a person's property and finances after they die, via wills and trusts set up during one's life. Suppose a person becomes unable to make decisions for themselves, the Estate lawyer would step in through advance directives, guardianships, and a power of attorney. Probate is the legal means where a person's final testament can be proven.


Products Liability

All vendors in the distribution chain are liable for defective products that cause harm to consumers. To find the manufacturer neglectful, Product Liability lawyers must verify that the product was assembled incorrectly or poorly designed. Alternately, a Product Liability lawyer retained to represent the manufacturer will attempt to prove that the buyer modified or mishandled the product after purchase but before the injury.


Professional Liability

Professional Liability law is the legal area that can hold professionals responsible for their misconduct. To determine their specific liability, professionals must follow the rules and regulations of their profession. Professional liability insurance is another method professionals use to shield themselves against groundless allegations.


Real Estate

Real Estate Law, also called Property Law, is the legal sector that deals with physical land properties (either residential or business). The purchase or sale of a property is a common reason to retain an experienced Real Estate attorney. Although there are federal laws, each state has its own laws. It is best to hire a Real Estate attorney specializing in the state in which your property is located.



Companies and individuals frequently invest in stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. Securities law handles these types of transactions, regardless of public or private origins. An experienced Securities lawyer can help you obtain these investments and protect them from fraud and defend you if there is a claim.


Social Security

The governmental program providing benefits to retirees, disabled workers, and family members of deceased workers is known as Social Security. A Social Security Attorney can help with registering for benefits and fighting for benefits if their claim is denied. Social Security law is influenced both by federal and state laws and ordinances.



Taxation Law is concerned with the payment and non-payment of taxes at both the state and federal levels. Although one may hire a Taxation lawyer to help locate discounts or credits that can reduce tax liability, they are usually only appointed when there is a dispute. If there are discrepancies in the returns, a Taxation Attorney can help prevent a client from being fined.



Tort Law, better known as Personal Injury law, seeks to resolve personal wrongdoing caused by another's carelessness. Tort lawyers usually attempt to recoup monetary damages for money lost or spent due to physical, emotional, or mental distress.



Transportation law does not only apply to roads but also to water, railways, and air. It essentially covers any means of moving people from one place to another (including infrastructure). Transportation laws originate at the local, state, or federal levels. They can be very generic (e.g., requiring life jackets or driver's licenses) or very precise (e.g., documents necessary for hazardous material movement).


Planning Zoning and Land Use

Zoning laws are instituted by local governments for land use. However, Land Use laws dictate how to use land within a given zone. There are usually separate areas for residential, commercial, and industrial use. Zoning Planning and Land Use Law make sure that every piece of land is built and managed accurately while using the correct documents, permits, and other documentation. If an owner or interested owner is unsure about the land's intended uses, a Zoning Planning and Land Use attorney could be called upon.