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What Is a Legal Editor and How to Become One

Legal Editor

As a legal editor, your responsibilities are to review, proofread, and edit legal publications and documents to ensure that the content is accurate and free from grammatical or spelling errors. The materials you edit and proofread can range from court judgments to statutes. You may also perform legal research and read over decisions so that you can write headlines, which are brief descriptions or introductions to the case, or case law digests, which are compilations of all cases related to a similar subject. Legal editors most commonly work for publishing companies that specialize in legal writing.

The qualifications to become a legal editor include a law degree from an accredited institution as well as an excellent grasp of English, proofreading, and copyediting. While at law school, seeking summer internships with legal publishers or working with professors as a research assistant is an excellent way to gain experience in the field. Unlike a practicing attorney, a legal editor does not need to be admitted to the bar to perform their duties. Other important skills for the job include strong writing and research abilities, along with keen attention to detail.