Legal Spanish: Lessons for Lawyers, Attorneys, Paralegals & Law Students

We offer specialist Spanish lessons for lawyers and anybody else in legal practice in their professional field.  Our typical student might be either an in-house lawyer or in private practice  for a law firm. Our legal spanish classes are designed to help you learn the legal terminology you need in your Spanish skills.

Why Study Legal Spanish?

If you work in the law in the US or a Spanish-speaking country, you’ll need to know legal terminology. Specialist material is rarely covered in depth in regular Spanish classes, so even if you are a student with excellent language skills and a high level of Spanish fluency, you will likely not have been exposed to the legal vocabulary you need to thrive in the workplace.

Perhaps as importantly, there are no shortage of so-called “false friends” (or “false cognates” to use the formal term) between English and Spanish. That is to say words that sound like they mean the same thing, but may have wildly different meanings. The difference between “bufete” (law firm) and “buffet” in English is significant, but the difference between “pariente” (relative) and “parent” or “simpatizar” (to get along with) and “to sympathize” could be life changing in a legal setting.

Worse, this can apply even between different Spanish speaking countries!

The Instituto Cervantes estimates there are 52.6 million Spanish speakers in the United States, making it the world’s fourth largest Spanish-speaking country after Mexico, Colombia and Spain. If you work in a US state with many Spanish-speaking clients – like California, Florida or Texas – you can put yourself ahead of the competition with your Spanish language skills and without a Spanish translator or bilingual colleague.

“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”, Nelson Mandela.

What Skills Do Our Legal Spanish Classes Cover?

Our legal Spanish classes cover the four key skills essential for language learning:-

  • Speaking
  • Writing
  • Listening
  • Reading

The first two abilities are sometimes called “oral production” and “written production”, and the second two “listing comprehension” and “reading comprehension”. For many legal professionals learning the Spanish language, speaking and listening will be the two core skills they wish to focus on first.

Spanish grammar and vocabulary you’ll learn through conversation classes and legal role plays, rather than the dusty textbooks and rote learning you may have suffered in high school. You’ll get listening comprehension practice by interacting with a native Spanish speaker using real life case studies from the law.

Simply put, we believe that speaking Spanish is the most effective tool in language learning. On this course, we’ll make sure you are speaking about the right topics for your legal career whether in Latin America or elsewhere.

What Legal Practice Areas Can You Teach in Spanish?

During your Spanish course for lawyers, you can choose to cover different branches of US and/or international law, including:-

  • Immigration law
  • Penal and criminal law
  • Procedural law
  • Civil law
  • Tax and financial law
  • Administrative law
  • Labor law
  • Family law
  • Constitutional law
  • Contract law & commercial law
  • Legal ethics and jurisprudence

We won’t use dated textbooks, but real life legal texts covering real world situations. Depending on what you wish to focus on, that could be anything from studying the peace treaty between FARC and the Colombian government through to role playing real-life conversations in a legal setting. Your needs will lead the way.

We’ll teach you the Spanish language skills they did not teach you in law school.

Who Are Typical Legal Spanish Students?

Current and previous legal spanish students have included:-

  • US immigration lawyer
  • US criminal defense attorney
  • In-house lawyer at a commodity trading house operating in Latin America
  • US Human rights non-profit

Latin American Spanish vs Peninsula/European Spanish

There’s a huge variety of regional variations across the Spanish speaking world, with accents, word choice and grammar changing between countries and regions.

For example, a native speaker from Spain will use different verb conjugations than somebody from Argentina (vos vs tu), while everyday Mexican slang might cause confused looks in the streets of Bogotá or Buenos Aires.

As a legal professional, you may hear Spanish from Venezuela one day and Chile the next. However, with enough practice and exposure, you will be able to understand native speakers from every country, whether they are from South America, Central America or Spain.

The secret really is to start learning Spanish first – there will be time to master the many regional differences later. Our teachers are from Argentina and Uruguay, sometimes called Rioplatense Spanish, but we can help you work on the right local details for your preferred Spanish dialect, whether it’s Mexican Spanish or Puerto Rican.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Will I have to do Spanish homework?

A: If you want homework, we can provide it, but many students do not.

Any Questions?

We will tailor our legal spanish lessons to your exact requirements. If you want to discuss what that means for you, please contact us with a brief outline of how we can help.

Claim Your First Spanish Class Free

We're so certain you'll love our Spanish lessons that - for a limited period - we're offering you a trial class completely free (regular price: $30).

What's the catch? There isn't one. We're confident you'll see why our students love us, and 95% of people who take the free class become regular students.

There's no pressure or "hard sell" - if you're not delighted, you don't pay a penny.

Book My Free Lesson!

(Got reservations? Check out our FAQ or ask us in confidence)