The perfect cover letter guide for lawyers: land your next job role with CVapp.ie!
Lawyers: advocates for justice, practitioners of law and noble professionals, without lawyers, the world would descend into disarray! Fortunately, lawyers are always in demand and will always be needed in society. Phew, thank goodness for that.
With the right cover letter, you can advance your career potential and secure your next position with ease. At CVapp.ie, we aim to simplify your job-search with our cover letter guide designed for lawyers just like you. In this guide, we’ll explore the purpose and importance of each section, and our top tips for writing out each section. But before we begin, it’s important to note that all successful cover letters generally follow this structure:
- The cover letter header
- The cover letter greeting
- The cover letter introduction
- The cover letter body paragraphs
- The cover letter conclusion
First on the list: the cover letter header!
Cover letter header
What’s a cover letter header, and why’s it so important, anyway? Cover letter headers contain essential contact information, such as your full name, professional address, phone number, email address, and any links to professional websites you wish to include. Without a header, employers would have a hard time getting in touch with you, so for this reason, it’s important that the contact information inside your header is clear, professional, up-to-date and accurate. Imagine missing out on your dream law gig because you put jerry1979 instead of jerry1978 in your email address – oops!
Cover letter greeting
Cover letter greetings should be polite, personable and professional: so if you know the names of your employer, it’s best to include it in your greeting. For example: “Dear Mr. Kennedy,” or “Dear Mrs. Fitzgerald,” is a great way to address employers. If you’re unsure who to address your cover letter to, you can research or contact the company, or simply address your cover letter to “Dear Company X,” if you’re unable to find out the name of the recipient your cover letter should be address to. It’s best to avoid generic greetings like "To Whom It May Concern" as they lack a personal touch. Using a proper greeting can help create a strong first impression upon potential employers and sets the stage for the next section of your cover letter: the introduction.
Dear Mr. Sheridan,
Cover letter introduction
Introductions are like taste-testing free samples at the grocery store: if you don’t like the taste of your sample, you’re probably not going to finish it! Cover letters work the same way – if employers don’t like your introduction, they’re probably going to throw your cover letter in the bin. Gulp! To avoid this, it’s essential to engage employers and pique their interest with a tantalizing introduction. You can use an entertaining anecdote, an intriguing fact or elaborate upon any relevant achievements from your legal career that can help pitch your value to potential employers. Additionally, you can also use your introduction to provide a compelling and concise overview of your background, any relevant experience, and important qualifications. Just be careful not to go overboard: you can elaborate and expand upon the details in your upcoming body paragraphs. For now, just focus on hooking the attention of employers and enticing them to read the rest of your cover letter.
As a lawyer with over a decade of legal experience, I am excited to apply for the role of corporate lawyer with Fuller Nathan Law. I completed a Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws from the National University of Ireland Galway, specialising in corporate law. As a corporate lawyer, I have enjoyed a fulfilling career, assisting with the acquisitions and dissolutions of businesses and consulting on complex corporate law cases and international governance.
Cover letter body paragraphs
Now that employers have had a taste of what you have to offer, it’s time to dish up the main course! The introduction sets the stage for your body paragraphs, so in this section, it’s time to elaborate upon any examples you may have touched upon in your introduction, as well as expanding upon any relevant achievements, qualifications and professional strengths that are relevant to the role you’re applying for. To do this effectively, you’ll need to have a good understanding of what employers are looking for. The best way to ensure you meet the requirements and expectations of employers is by having a good understanding of the job description: what are employers looking for? What skills have they listed that you already possess? Where possible, back up your skills and expertise with tangible examples – if you can use numbers, facts and figures to support these claims, even better! Overall, your body paragraphs should paint a clear picture of who you are as a legal professional and captivate the attention of employers.
In addition to my technical legal knowledge, I am fluent in English, Irish and French and have good command in Spanish and Polish. As a corporate lawyer, you are constantly in environments that require traversing social and cultural dimensions to get successful results. I am proud to have assisted over 1000 clients, including in a pro-bono capacity, over the course of my career. Some of my career highlights are as follows:
- Obtaining a success rate in over 96% of all cases, the most successful of any lawyer at my previous position with Sumter & Sumter
- Won an $80M settlement for private clients in Dublin
- Raised over $150,000 in an international pro-bono fundraiser, with all proceeds presented to local charities
Cover letter conclusion
Once you’ve finished crafting brilliant body paragraphs, you’re nearly ready to start sending your cover letter and CV off to employers and applying for jobs – but before we get there, it’s important to finish your cover letter off strong with a compelling conclusion! The conclusion exists to summarise any key points you made in your cover letter, to thank employers for their time and consideration, and to express your desire with employers to connect in the near-future. Including a call-to-action statement is a great way to prompt employers to reach out to you. For example: “I’d love to discuss this opportunity with you at your earliest convenience. Would you be available to connect next week?”
With confidence and conviction, you can close your conclusion with a strong call-to-action statement and a professional sign-off. Closing statements such as “yours sincerely,” “best wishes,” or “kind regards” are a great way to end your conclusion. Don’t forget to add your name at the end! Here’s a great example below:
I would love to discuss my professional experiences and skillset with you at your earliest convenience. Thank you for your time and consideration.
CVapp.ie is here to support your professional growth throughout all stages of your career. Be sure to check out the CVapp.ie website and blog for more career tools and resources. Good luck, we believe in your greatness!