The IPMAIA Legal Studies course, the successor of the oldest higher education course for Legal Studies in the country and a pioneer in broadening legal training focusing on professions other than lawyers and judges, aims to train highly specialised legal professionals. While studying law was, for previous generations, only for the purpose of becoming a lawyer or a judge, the evolution in society and legal institutions demands trained professionals with more specialised skills, as imposed by the dynamics and needs of the labour market.
The Bachelor’s degree in Legal Studies aims to centralise training based on working as a solicitador and connected areas, bringing together the acquisition of knowledge about different practical activities with the field of information technology and developing skills in procedural and legal or preventative areas. In Portugal, a solicitador is a professional similar to a paralegal in English-speaking countries.
Specific skills will be developed for performing the role of enforcement agent, for carrying out the work of a solicitador, representing clients at notaries, registry offices and public agencies, as well as special skills in the field of distribution of estates and divorces by mutual consent.
This degree makes it possible to join the National Association of Solicitadores and Enforcement Agents. It is expected that those who graduate from IPMAIA will continue to enjoy high employability rates and stand out from the rest. This was the case for graduates from the previous course, which, according to official data, enjoyed the best situation in the region among all legal studies courses.
The main professional opportunities are:
- Solicitador* – judicial and extrajudicial representation, advice and consultancy, as a liberal professional, in an individual practice or with associates or even within a firm of solicitadores;
- Enforcement agent*;
- Judicial administrator**;
- Justice of the peace for family, labour, consumer, penal, administrative and industrial property law;
- Private administrator – administration of assets and inheritance;
- Public administration** – central, regional, local, foundations and public companies (provides access to the senior official career in the public administration and a favourable position in recruitment processes for justice officers and the criminal investigation police (PJ));
- Private notary adviser – advice at registry officers and notaries; senior officer at land and civil registry offices;
- Legal adviser and senior legal officer – responsible for litigation at companies; insolvency administrator;
- Official receiver and manager; secretary at commercial companies; manager of legal departments and human resources departments at companies; management of companies and services that are highly legal in nature;
- Real estate brokerage.
*Under the terms of the Solicitors Bar Association . See Admission Requirements
** As per the provisions of the applicable legislation.
What makes this course different?
The IPMAIA Bachelor’s degree, thanks to its highly qualified and experienced teaching staff, guarantees the quality of the training, which helps justify its strong potential for employability. Students’ full professional and personal development is encouraged in their academic relationship with teachers, who may also be members of important legal organisations, on a purpose-built campus with first-rate facilities that meets the highest European standards. Portuguese students study alongside and interact with students of different nationalities, cultures and views, with incentives for international exchange programmes thanks to student support grants.