Becoming a judge is not necessarily something that can only be accomplished by aimmigration lawyer. You do not need a law degree in some instances in order to become a local judge. Being a well respected and well liked individual is sometimes even more important to your chances of becoming elected than what your educational background is.
Becoming a judge is tough work. These positions can be gained by appointment by an elected official or they are elected positions themselves. Either way, a judge has a demanding job and there is quite a bit of responsibility placed upon them. Being a judge requires a good eye for spotting salient legal reasoning facts and a sense of fairness. If you are able to make tough decisions in a high pressure situation, you might have what it takes to become a judge.
- Do you need a law degree to become a judge? Not in all instances, but it is a very helpful thing to have. Usually judges have been to law school and have been practicing law in some capacity for several years. An intimate knowledge of the law and how it is practiced is a very useful bit of experience to have on your side, but again, in some instances it is not an absolute requirement. This is usually true at the municipal or village level, however. It is extremely unlikely that a Supreme Court judge, for example, is not going to be appointed to a position without practicing law at a high level.
- If you want to become a judge and do not have a law degree, you will want to start small. If your village or town has an opening or an upcoming election, you can place your name on the ballot with usually some petition signatures and a small ballot fee. This is the first step. After this, you need to ensure that you are convincing voters of your ability to hold an elected position. This is the hardest part of becoming a judge. If the voting public is not convinced of your ability, you will never become a judge. When you do not have a law degree, your image will likely be at a disadvantage in comparison to an opposition candidate with extensive legal experience.
- Your level of popularity within your village will also make a difference here, believe it or not. A well liked individual—even one without a law degree—has a good chance of becoming elected. A popular individual without a law degree can easily be elected over a candidate with a law degree held in poor regard across the community. Elections are not always about whom is most qualified. Sometimes they really are like high school class president races: the most popular person wins.
A good judge does not need to be limited by their schooling. There have been some very good local judges without law degrees and some very unfair and biased judges that have excelled in law school. If you want to become a judge, going to law school will not hurt your chances, but if you are not looking to join something as prestigious as a federal position, having a law degree is not entirely necessary. Figure out what you are looking for and then pick an appropriate course of action. Being popular in your hometown can go a long way, believe it or not.