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What Is the Difference Between an Attorney and a Lawyer?

The major difference between an attorney and a lawyer is that an attorney has passed the bar in their state. They are thus allowed to formally practice law and be an advocate for their clients’ interested, including arguing cases in court on behalf of defendants, or by working in a prosecutor’s office. A lawyer, meanwhile, is simply someone who has studied and completed a law degree. However, in the United States, the two terms are often used interchangeably, and many people who call themselves lawyers are in fact admitted to the bar and can practice as an attorney-at-law.