Guest post by by Colin Brigham - If you are considering returning for an advanced master of laws, then you may want to first do some research to discover what the different types of programs are and which might be the best fit for your career aspirations and goals. The good news is that, with the continuing strong popularity of these types of LL.M. tax programs, there are different areas of specialization that this extra year of postgraduate study can open doors to.
The not-so-good news may come when you first realize the price tag one extra year of study brings with it. This is why it is important to evaluate not just whether to reenter school for a LL.M specializing in tax, but when and even if this is the right educational next step for you. Here, learn about the several different types of LL.M. degrees you can earn and which one, if any, is right for you.
LL.M. Intellectual Property Law
If you have an interest in the complex and fascinating world of patents, trademarks, copyrights and other types of intellectual property, then one of the many tax LL.M. programs leading to a specialization in intellectual property (IP) law, comparative intellectual law and policy and other various sub-sections of the IP arena might be of interest to you. This track can lead you into domestic or international waters, or both, in protecting the interests of intellectual property owners. You may also become involved in writing and regulating policies as they relate to domestic and foreign intellectual property management and enforcement. As IP, legal, financial and other matters intertwine in this rich and complicated field, you can bring your specialized LL.M. tax training to bear on international trade law and intellectual property rights worldwide.
Bankruptcy, Banking and Finance Law
Bankruptcy law is another specialized area of tax law that can be an engrossing and rewarding career path for talented tax LL.M. advanced degree candidates. Bankruptcy law is also a particularly stable and growing field of tax law in these continuing rough economic times and there are many complex laws to understand and apply as they relate to personal and business bankruptcy proceedings. Intertwined with bankruptcy law you will also find banking law and finance law, which are also lucrative and growing fields where tax LL.M. degree holders may find a rewarding career.
Environmental and Human Rights Law
As more and more students and citizens become involved in the continual quest to save the planet through adopting environmentally friendly “green” energy solutions, environmental law is an exciting and growing field where many LL.M. graduates are finding meaningful employment. There is also a great amount of specialization yet to be created within this relatively new entrant to the legal profession, meaning that if you have a special focus or cause that you feel passionately about, it is entirely possible to carve out a rewarding career as a specialist in that niche. Environmental law can extend in many directions, from protecting and preserving natural resources to prosecuting international offenders to crafting new policies and regulations that govern the future of how we spend the limited resources our planet offers. In a similar way, the realm of human rights law is designed to protect human beings from exploitation by fellow human beings and is also a relatively new entrant to the overall legal field. The issue of human trafficking in particular has recently been receiving an alarming amount of publicity from more and more human rights violations that are being brought to light, and this is a very rewarding area of law for LL.M. graduates to enter.
Information Technology Law
Yet another growing field that is here to stay is the field of information technology law. With the explosion of the world wide web and the many business and individuals who maintain a continual online presence, along with issues as they relate to digital transmission of intellectual and technological property and online commerce, open source technology and issues relating to information security, LL.M. graduates can find a strong foothold in this field and there is also much opportunity to carve out further specialized niches in which to practice information technology law.