solicitor


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solicitor,

in English law, person duly admitted to practice before the supreme court of judicature. He is the agent of the person whose suit he handles, and is distinguished from a barrister, who argues cases before the judge (see attorneyattorney,
agent put in place of another to manage particular affairs of the principal. An attorney in fact is an agent who conducts business under authority that is controlled and limited by a written document called a letter, or power, of attorney granted by the principal.
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). The solicitor serves as an intermediary agent between the barrister and his client, negotiating fees and preparing the case for trial. Solicitors may take the place of barristers in the lower courts, and in the 1990s gained new rights of audience in higher courts. They are officers of the court; they have a monopoly of certain legal business and are subject to court regulation. The training required of a solicitor, set by the Law Society (earlier called the Incorporated Law Society), includes several years of clerkship under a practicing solicitor and attendance at a law school.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Solicitor

 

in Great Britain, a lawyer who specializes in magistrates’ court cases at the county and the metropolitan county levels and prepares cases for barristers, who are higher ranking lawyers. Solicitors also serve as legal counsels in industrial enterprises, institutions, organizations, and joint-stock companies.

Solicitors have existed since the 13th century and have been members of the Law Society since 1825. Their legal status is defined by the Solicitors’ Act of 1941. Before a person can become a solicitor, he must work under a solicitor for a period of five years, which is reduced to three years if the candidate has a university degree. The candidate is admitted a solicitor by the lord high chancellor of appeal.

The existence of two categories of lawyers in Great Britain attests to the conservatism of the British legal system and the social and professional differentiation within the legal profession. It also constitutes an attempt to maintain the privileges enjoyed by barristers and the high cost of legal procedures.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

solicitor

1. (in Britain) a lawyer who advises clients on matters of law, draws up legal documents, prepares cases for barristers, etc., and who may represent clients in certain courts
2. (in the US) an officer responsible for the legal affairs of a town, city, etc.
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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