Legal Resume Keywords and Skills (Hard Skills)

Here are the keywords and skills that appear most frequently on recent Legal job postings. In other words, these are the most sought after skills by recruiters and hiring managers. So try to include them on your resume where possible. Go to the Sample Templates ↓ below to see how to include them on your resume.

Remember that every job is different. Instead of including all these keywords on your resume, identify the keywords most relevant to the job you're applying to and include those. Use the free Targeted Resume tool to help with this.

Choose a category
  • Legal Advice
  • Corporate Law
  • Litigation
  • Legal Writing
  • Legal Research
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Civil Litigation
  •  Find out what your resume's missing
  • Criminal Law
  • Labor and Employment Law
  • Legal Opinions
  • Law
  • Contract Law
  • Legal Consulting
  • Intellectual Property
  • Legal Contract Review
  • Mediation
  • Family Law
  • International Law
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Legal Document Preparation
  • Paralegals
  • Westlaw
  • Trials
  • Pleadings
  • Litigation Support
  • Document Review
  • Personal Injury Law
  • LexisNexis
  • Document Drafting
  • Appeals
  • Time Management
  • Teamwork
  • Legal Administration
  • Microsoft Access
  • Research
  • Administrative Assistance
  • Public Speaking
  • File Management
  • Customer Service
  • Communication
  • Diary Management
  • Corporate Governance
  • Joint Ventures
  • Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A)
  • Due Diligence
  • Cross-border Transactions
  • Privacy Law
  • Legal Compliance
  • Licensing
  • Contract Negotiation
  • Competition Law
  • Government
  • Local Government
  • Administrative Law
  • Public Sector
  • Public Policy
  • Interim Management
  • Coaching
  • Rights
  • Management Consulting
  • Public Relations
  • Social Media
  • Management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Business Strategy
  • Negotiation
  • Event Management
  • Company Secretarial Work
  • Event Planning
  • Clerical Skills
  • Business Planning
  • Project Management
  • Leadership
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Marketing
  • Regulatory Compliance
  • Compliance Management
  • Risk Management
  • Auditing
  • Trade Compliance
  • Compliance Regulations
  • Banking
  • Anti Money Laundering
  • Internal Audit
  • Healthcare Compliance
  • Risk Assessment
  • Financial Services
  • Finance
  • Analytical Skills
  • U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Teaching
  • Quality Assurance
  • Arbitration
  • Legal Issues
  • Compliance Monitoring
  • Investigation
  • Change Management
  • Standards Compliance
  • Stakeholder Management
  • Business Process Improvement
  • Internal Controls
  • Financial Risk
  • Financial Analysis
  • Patent Prosecution
  • Patent Law
  • Patentability
  • Patent Litigation
  • Patent Preparation
  • Trademarks
  • Trade Secrets
  • Prosecution
  • Copyright Law
  • Invention
  • Patent Portfolio Analysis
  • Trademark Infringement
  • Software Patents
  • Tax Advisory
  • Tax
  • Tax Law
  • Accounting
  • Corporate Tax
  • Value-Added Tax (VAT)
  • Income Tax
  • Financial Accounting
  • International Tax
  • Tax Planning
  • Dissolution
  •   Show full list

Resume Skills: Legal Research

  • Westlaw
  • LexisNexis
  • Clio
  • AbacusNext
  • Relativity
  • iManage
  • LiveNotes
  • CaseMap
  • Legal Tracker
  • Clio Manage
  • Zola Suite
  • Lexis Nexis
  • MyCase
  • PracticePanther
  • Legal Files
  • Statutes Interpretation
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Legal Document Review
  • Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook)
  • Adobe Acrobat Pro
  • Salesforce
  • PubMed
  •  Match your resume to these skills

Resume Skills: Legal Research & Writing

Resume Skills: Regulatory Compliance

  • Sarbanes Oxley Act (SOX)
  • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)
  • General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
  • Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations
  •  Match your resume to these skills

Resume Skills: Languages

Resume Skills: Legal

Resume Skills: Intellectual Property

Resume Skills: Software

Resume Skills: Contract Law

Resume Skills: Research and Analysis

Resume Skills: Other

Resume Skills: Document Drafting

Resume Skills: Corporate Law

  Does your resume contain all the right skills? Paste in your resume in the AI Resume Scan ↓ section below and get an instant score.

Compare Your Resume To These Legal Skills (ATS Scan)

Paste your resume below and our AI will identify which keywords are missing from your resume from the list above (and what you need to include). Including the right keywords will help you get past Applicant Tracking Systems (i.e. resume screeners) which may scan your resume for keywords to see if you're a match for the job.

Sample Legal Resume: How To Include These Skills

Add keywords directly into your resume's work experiences, education or Skills section, like we've shown in the examples below. Use the examples below as inspiration.

Choose a template
Your Name
Legal Professional
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
EXPERIENCE March 2018 - Present
Senior Legal Counsel
Utilized deep understanding of Intellectual Property law to protect the organization's interests, leading to a 20% decrease in the infringement cases
Handled high-stakes litigation, applying strong legal research skills, reducing time spent on case preparation by 30%
Drafted important corporate legal documents, with strong focus on legal writing, significantly enhancing company's compliance with industry standards
Played an instrumental role in the formation of effective strategy for dispute resolution, resulting in a 40% reduction in outstanding disputes
Managed legal risk effectively, utilizing comprehensive knowledge of legal consulting, subsequently increasing business operations morale by 25%
Resume Worded January 2015 - March 2018
Legal Counsel
Efficiently reviewed and negotiated complex legal contracts, decreasing financial liabilities by 15%
Advised on labor and employment law matters, reducing the company’s potential legal liability by 20%
Demonstrated comprehensive knowledge of commercial litigation in handling all aspects of dispute resolution for a variety of corporate clients
Jones Day August 2011 - December 2014
Associate Attorney
Developed and executed litigation strategies in various aspects of civil litigation, leading to 80% successful case resolution
Applied strong legal research skills to assist in case management and preparation, resulting in increased team efficiency by 15%
Resume Worded Academic Center August 2013
Master of Laws (LLM) - Corporate Law
Top 1% of class, Awarded 'Resume Worded Top Counsel Award' in final year
Resume Worded University May 2011
Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
Specialization in Commercial Law
Graduated Cum Laude
Legal Software: Lexis Nexis, Westlaw, Clio, MyCase, PracticePanther, Legal Files
Corporate Law Skills: Commercial Litigation, Employment Law, Mergers & Acquisitions, Contract Drafting, Legal Research, Corporate Governance
Languages: English (Native), French (Fluent), German (Intermediary)
Certifications: BAR Certification (2011), Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP, 2015)
Leadership & Volunteering: Legal Aid Society (Pro Bono Legal Services for Low Income Individuals, 2019 - Present)
Publications & Projects: Published 'Digital Privacy Laws and Their Impact on Businesses' in the Resume Worded Law Review (2017)
Awards & Accolades: Resume Worded Top Counsel Award (2013), Lexis Nexis Award for Excellence in Legal Research (2011)
Your Name
Corporate Lawyer
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
Resume Worded March 2018 - Present
Corporate Lawyer
Managerial experience in formation and execution of legal contracts strategy, reducing time spent by 35%
Leveraged expertise in legal consulting to provide advice on corporate transactions in compliance with legislative and regulatory rules, increasing company's regulatory compliance by 20%
Enhanced the Intellectual Property law framework for the company, leading to a 25% increase in the legal protection of the company’s IP
Introduced innovative approaches to mediating disputes amongst departments, reducing incident occurrence by 20%
Provided legal advice to executive management regarding risk mitigation, resulting in 15% reduction of legal risk exposures January 2015 - March 2018
Junior Corporate Lawyer
Managed corporate legal processes with focus on contract law, improving compliance levels by 10%
Advised clients on commercial transactions and regulatory compliance, reducing the risk of violations by 15%
Served in pivotal role managing large portfolio of intellectual property assets, ensuring 100% compliance with relevant legal standards
Baker McKenzie June 2010 - December 2014
Supported legal team with strong legal research, speeding case preparation by 15%
Drafted legal documents, mitigating potential legal issues before they emerged
Assisted in legal document preparation for trial cases, resulting in an increase in case win rates by 10%
Resume Worded University December 2014
Master of Laws in Corporate Law
Focused on Compliance, Contract Law, and Intellectual Property Law
Resume Worded University May 2010
Bachelor of Laws
Concentrated on Commercial Law
Graduated with Honours, Top 10% of class
Legal Research: LexisNexis, Westlaw, PACER
Legal Software: LiveNotes, CaseMap, Legal Tracker, Clio Manage, Zola Suite
Document Drafting: Contracts, Agreements, Resolutions, Legal Opinions, Terms of Use
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Conversational), French (Basic)
Certifications: Certified Contract Manager - National Contract Management Association (NCMA)
Professional Organizations: Member of the State Bar Association and American Corporate Counsel Association
Volunteering: Provided Pro Bono Corporate Law Advice for Small Businesses through Legal Aid
Projects: Contributor for LiveLaw's Blog on the subject of Corporate Compliance and Law
Your Name
Legal Consultant
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
EXPERIENCE February 2017 - Present
Legal Consultant
Formulated legal strategy for the organization in compliance with contract law, resulting in improved business operations by 30%
Delivered expert legal opinions to C-level executives, leading to significant risk reduction
Designed legal framework for labor and employment law, resulting in a 20% decrease in employment legal issues
Played key role in resolution of legal disputes utilizing mediation techniques, leading to 35% reduction in ongoing legal disputes
Conducted rigorous legal research for case preparation, reducing case processing time by 18%
Resume Worded June 2012 - February 2017
Legal Associate
Managed litigation cases under the supervision of senior counsel, leading to a 25% increment in win rates
Delivered high-quality legal consulting advice to support business transactions, resulting in an increase in compliance by 10%
Reviewed and drafted legal documents in alignment with corporate law, leading to improved legal compliance levels by 15%
Kirkland & Ellis December 2008 - June 2012
Supported attorneys with legal research, leading to increased case efficiency by 20%
Managed logistics for trials, leading to significant improvements in court presentation
Resume Worded Institute June 2010
Certified Consultant Paralegal (CCP)
Part-time certification during employment at Kirkland & Ellis
Resume Worded University May 2008
Juris Doctor - Law
Specialized in Corporate and Business Law
Legal Research & Analysis: Statutes Interpretation, Mergers & Acquisitions, Westlaw, LexisNexis, Legal Document Review
Software Proficiencies: Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook), Adobe Acrobat Pro, Clio, Legal Files, Salesforce
Certifications: Harvard Law School Program - Negotiation and Leadership (2013), Yale Law School Program - Law and Economics (2011)
Awards & Recognition: Top Legal Consultant - (2019, 2020), Employee of the Year - Resume Worded (2016)
Volunteering: Pro Bono Legal Services - charity organizations (2014-present), Mentor - Resume Worded Young Professionals Program (2012-present)
Your Name
Legal Advisor
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
Resume Worded January 2018 - Present
Chief Legal Advisor
Advised executive team on international law, leading to an expansion into new markets while remaining compliant with regulations
Led the development and implementation of legal strategies, resulting in a 25% increase in company's legal standing
Directed proactive review of regulatory changes in criminal law to ensure the company operates within legal boundaries
Leveraged conflict resolution and mediation skills to resolve internal disputes, reducing staffing issues by 30%
Channeled expertise in Intellectual Property law for proactive protection of organization’s assets, contributing to a 20% decrease in patent infringements May 2014 - December 2017
Senior Legal Advisor
Counseled clients on legal matters and potential legal issues, resulting in a 15% decrease in litigations
Managed International Law matters for the company, reducing risks associated with international transactions by 20%
Prepared critical legal documents to streamline business operations, improving company-wide efficiency by 10%
Latham & Watkins October 2009 - March 2014
Legal Advisor
Advised executives on various laws and regulatory decisions affecting the company
Handled matters related to contract law, reducing company's potential legal liabilities by 20%
Assisted in the preparation of legal documents, improving organizational compliance by 10%
Resume Worded Academic Center December 2011
Executive Master in Law (LLM)
Focused on Corporate, M&A, and Securities Laws
Resume Worded University June 2009
Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
Specialized in Commercial and Corporate Laws
Awards: Dean's List 2008, 2009 (Top 5%)
Legal Research & Writing: Contract Drafting, Litigation Documents, Legal Opinions, Regulatory Material Interpretation
Regulatory Compliance: Sarbanes Oxley Act (SOX), Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations
Legal Software: Westlaw, LexisNexis, Clio, AbacusNext, Relativity, iManage
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Fluent), French (Conversational)
Certifications: Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional (CCEP), Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP)
Publications: Wrote 10+ articles about business and corporate law for HighCourt Blog
Leadership & Volunteering: Bar Association's Pro Bono Legal Clinic (Volunteer), Legal Aid Society (Board member)
Courses: Harvard University: Online Negotiation Mastery, UPenn: Online Contract Law Course
Your Name
Contract Law Specialist
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
EXPERIENCE January 2018 - Present
Contract Law Specialist
Revitalized contract management processes, resulting in a 40% decrease in time spent on contract review and execution
Introduced automation of legal contract review, reducing processing time by 30%
Specialized in handling contract litigations, achieving a satisfaction rate of 95% with clients
Implemented a comprehensive legal strategy for the efficient execution of contracts across the company, leading to a 15% reduction in labor costs
Devised methods for risk management in contract execution in alignment with commercial law, resulting in a 20% reduction in contract-related disputes
Resume Worded January 2014 - December 2017
Assistant Contract Law Specialist
Managed contracts from drafting to closure, reducing company's legal risk by 15%
Developed and implemented legal strategies for contract disputes, achieving a successful resolution rate of 80%
Used legal research skills to formulate contract policies in compliance with industry regulations, increasing operational efficiency by 20%
White & Case June 2009 - December 2013
Associate Attorney (Contract Law)
Handled contract preparation and management, leading to increased efficiency by 20%
Assisted in the resolution of contractual disputes, leading to a 10% decrease in case duration
Supported senior attorneys in contract litigation matters, contributing to a 20% improvement in case resolution rate
Resume Worded Academic Center December 2013
Master of Laws (LL.M) - Contract Law
Award: Valedictorian, Class of 2013
Resume Worded University May 2009
Bachelor of Laws (LL.B)
Ranked in the top 10% of the class
President, Student Legal Society
Contract Law: Contract drafting, Contract reviewing, Negotiations, Dispute resolution, Intellectual property rights, Confidentiality agreements
Research and Analysis: Legal research, Data analysis, Risk analysis, Compliance checks
IT Skills: Microsoft Office Suite (Expert), Legal Research Software (Westlaw, LexisNexis), Document Management Systems
Languages: English (Native), Spanish (Fluent), German (Conversational)
Certifications: Certified Contract Manager - National Contract Management Association (2020)
Publications: Authored article 'Understanding the Intricacies of Contract Law' in Legal Times (2019)
Training and Workshops: Attended 'Advanced Negotiation Skills' Workshop by the American Bar Association (2018)
Volunteering: Pro bono contract law advisor - Local Small Business Association (2015-Present)
Your Name
Intellectual Property Attorney
City, Country  •  (123) 456-789  •  [email protected]  •
Resume Worded April 2016 - Present
Senior Intellectual Property Attorney
Protected the organization's intellectual property (IP) rights, decreasing patent infringements by 25%
Played a pivotal role in IP litigation, enhancing the company's win rate in IP lawsuits by 35%
Managed a diverse portfolio of Intellectual Property assets, reducing potential IP issues by 15%
Advised on IP law matters to C-level executives, leading to implementation of best practices for IP protection
Led the team in IP contract negotiations, resulting in incremental gain in rights over critical IP January 2012 - March 2016
Intellectual Property Attorney
Managed intellectual property issues for the company, reducing the risk of patent infringement by 30%
Developed strategies for IP protection and litigation, leading to a win rate of over 85% in lawsuits
Advised clients on IP law, leading to improved understanding and utilization of IP rights by 20%
Sidley Austin July 2007 - December 2011
Associate Attorney (IP Law)
Researched and interpreted IP laws to inform legal strategies, leading to a 15% increase in case win rate
Supported senior lawyers in IP litigation matters, resulting in a higher success rate in court cases
Drafted and reviewed legal documents from an IP law perspective, enhancing compliance by 10%
Resume Worded University June 2007
Master of Laws (LLM) - Intellectual Property Law
Achieved with Distinction
Resume Worded Academic Center June 2004
Bachelor of Laws (LLB) - Common Law
Graduated Magna Cum Laude
Coursework emphasis in Intellectual Property Law
Legal: Understanding of Intellectual Property Law, Patent Law, Copyright Law, Trademark Law, and Trade Secret Law
Legal Research: LexisNexis, Westlaw, PubMed
Intellectual Property: Patent Strategy & Management, Licensing, Legal Opinions, Patent Prosecution
Software: Microsoft Office, Adobe Suite, Google Suite
Certifications: Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP), California Bar Certification
Publications: Regular contributor to 'Intellectual Property Law Review' journal
Languages: English (Native), French (Fluent), Spanish (Conversational)
Volunteering: Pro bono work for local nonprofits protecting intellectual property rights

How do I add skills to a Legal resume?

Review the job posting closely.

Go through the Legal posting you're applying to, and identify hard skills the company is looking for. For example, skills like Corporate Law, Litigation and Civil Litigation are possible skills. These are skills you should try to include on your resume.

Add industry skills like Legal Advice and Commercial Litigation.

Add other common skills from your industry - such as Legal Research, Criminal Law and Legal Writing - into your resume if they're relevant.

Add skills into your work experience.

Incorporate skills - like Internal Audit, Trade Compliance and Tax Planning - into your work experience too. This shows hiring managers that you have practical experience with these tools, techniques and skills.

Show your conflict resolution skill set.

It's important to show hiring managers your ability to resolve conflict, whether that's in your previous Legal roles or other experiences.

Use the exact job title.

Try to add the exact job title, Legal, somewhere into your resume to get past resume screeners. See the infographic for how to do this.

Legal Resume Templates

Here are examples of proven resumes in related jobs and industries, approved by experienced hiring managers. Use them as inspiration when you're writing your own resume. You can even download and edit the resume template in Google Docs.

Resume Example
Entry Level Legal Assistant

Resume Example
Experienced Legal Assistant

Resume Example
Entry Level Legal Assistant

Resume Example

Resume Example
Highlights (Free)

Resume Example
Modern Two-Column

Word Cloud for Legal Skills & Keywords

The following word cloud highlights the most popular keywords that appear on Legal job descriptions. The bigger the word, the more frequently it shows up on employer's job postings. If you have experience with these keywords, include them on your resume.

Top Legal Skills and Keywords to Include On Your Resume

Browse Jobs in this Category

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Frequently Asked Questions

What hard skills should you include on a Legal resume?

Here are some of the most popular skills we see on Legal resumes:

  • Legal Advice
  • Corporate Law
  • Litigation
  • Legal Writing
  • Legal Research
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Civil Litigation
  • Criminal Law

How do resume skills compare between a Patent Attorney and a Tax Lawyer?

Popular skills we often see on resumes for Patent Attorney positions include:

  • Patent Prosecution
  • Patent Law
  • Patentability
  • Intellectual Property
  • Patent Litigation
  • Patent Preparation
  • Trademarks
  • Licensing

In comparison, skills we see on Tax Lawyer resumes include:

  • Tax Advisory
  • Tax
  • Tax Law
  • Accounting
  • Corporate Tax
  • Corporate Law
  • Legal Advice
  • Value-Added Tax (VAT)

What are good resume skills to include for different Legal roles and job titles?

Depending on the specific role you apply to, you may need to emphasize different skill sets. Here are a few examples:

  • Tax Lawyer: Tax Advisory, Tax, Tax Law, Accounting and Corporate Tax
  • Patent Attorney: Patent Prosecution, Patent Law, Patentability, Intellectual Property and Patent Litigation
  • Intellectual Property Lawyer: Trademarks, Trade Secrets, Licensing, Copyright Law and Litigation

Target your Resume to a Job Description

While the keywords above are a good indication of what skills you need on your resume, you should try to find additional keywords that are specific to the job. To do this, use the free Targeted Resume tool. It analyzes the job you are applying to and finds the most important keywords you need on your resume.

It is personalized to your resume, and is the best way to ensure your resume will pass the automated resume filters.

Start targeting your resume

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