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.

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.

  • Legal Advice
  • Corporate Law
  • Litigation
  • Legal Writing
  • Legal Research
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Civil Litigation
  • 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
  •   Show full list

  Where on my resume do I add these buzzwords?

Try to add these keywords directly into your resume's work experiences. Alternatively, you can also include a Skills section where you can list your technical skills in order of your proficiency.

Oh and one more thing! It goes without saying, but only include these technical skills or keywords into your resume if you actually have experience with them.

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.

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

Resume Example
Highlights (Free)

Resume Example
Modern Two-Column

Resume Example

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

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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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