Some lawyers choose not to practice which may seem paradoxical after all the years of hard work. There are a variety of factors which may influence this decision. Generally, it has been found that excessive demands put on lawyers by the profession with little flexibility in their schedule can impact one’s physical and mental health, their relationships and time with family. Women are leaving at a higher rate than the men.
This issue is an overall concern to the legal industry. Findings of research shared at the recent Law Society of Upper Canada’s Justicia Symposium 2014, flowing from the Justicia Project implemented to promote and support the retention and advancement of women in private practice, underscores that there is still a lack of diversity in the profession. The perception that a level playing field does not exist in law is a source of frustration for affected lawyers who have been trained to seek fairness and justice for themselves and their clients. Some lawyers leave as a result given the lack of mentorship, sponsorship and perceived partnership opportunities for women.
Some lawyers perceive themselves as failures for not being able to make law work for them when overall systematic change is required.