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Differences between a barrister and a lawyer and procurator in Spain

lawyer in spainIn English legal system, we can find several types of legal figures when having a case to be brought to courts or just simply needed of legal help, thus we can name the 2 most popular legal figures; the most common and frequent one is the solicitor, a figure that deals face to face with the client and carries out with all legal duties of his client and on the other hand we can find the barrister.

A barrister is a legal figure that is legally qualified to be called to the bar. To become a barrister it is necessary to complete a law degree, and take a Common Professional Exam or Post-Graduate Diploma in Law. After taking it they will need to take a one-year Bar professional training course. After the training period, they will be called to the bar for one of the four Inns but they won’t become proper barristers yet. Once in the Inn, they will have to follow a one-year pupillage with a senior barrister, during this period, they will attend to courts and do some court work as part as their pupillage, after this phase, they will be ready to become fully barrister.

There is no such figure in Spanish legal system. When talking about Spanish legal figures we can find, among a large variety, the 2 most common ones lawyer and procurator. A lawyer does the same work as a solicitor mostly; faces the client, deal with their legal assets, represent them (when companies) and do most paperwork, however, and that is what differentiates solicitors from lawyers is that the last figure represents the client in courts and is mandatory when the monetary debt in the case is higher than 2.000€.

The procurador is a figure that does not exist in English Legal system but has several similarities with the English barrister. Is a legally qualified figure that rarely faces the client or clients look for them (few of the times). Their main works is in dealing with courts, and are the main connection between decisions made by justice bodies and the abogado that will report the information to the client. It is normally abogados the ones who look for procurator and tell them everything about the case and the client. There is one main detail that makes procuradores different than barristers; the fact that procuradores don’t talk on representation of clients during trial. The ones defending the clients’ interests are the lawyers.

So far, we have seen that neither abogados nor procuradores are completely similar to solicitors and barrister, for the differences are notorious, however, they have several keypoints in common. We can say the Spanish figures are something in between these two. Barristers and procurators do a more formal and technical work, court based with no direct interaction with the client whilst the solicitors and lawyers carry a more “day by day” legal work, facing the client, dealing with the paperwork and forms, contacting the barrister/procurator, representing companies, and carrying all legal assets that does not involve court appearing.

When dealing with some legal assets in Spanish courts, it is possible to do it on your own, however, if the debts of the assets go higher than 2.000€ you will not only required to hire a procurador but also a solicitor, since he is the one that normally find the right procurador. Although is possible to act without them in a minor trial, we strongly recommend to hire a lawyer since the beginning, for the Spanish law are often needed of professional help and the public and private bodies will speak mostly Spanish. In SpanishLawyers, we provide fully legal help and advice in courts and out of them in English and Spanish for each matter you have to deal with.