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A complicated life as a lawyer in Venezuela

Author: Mari Suárez

Editor: Akihiko Ozaki M.D.,

A complicated life as a lawyer in Venezuela.

Being a lawyer in Venezuela is not easy. I am 23 years old right now but ended my career in 2016, when I was 21 years old. I felt like a teenager with a huge responsibility at that time, although in that moment, my country was in a better situation than it is right now. A lawyer role appeared to be an excellent job to me because a lawyer has the responsibility of righting wrongs and is able to apply the law in a positive way, achieving justice for all of the people who believe in the system.

However, being a lawyer is difficult when you have faith in the system and in the process but it does not work. This is the case in Venezuela, where the government manipulates the law. Now, we are in the worst situation we have ever been. Justice does not work, and it is impossible for young people to find good jobs as lawyers. In addition, the lawyer salary is low despite the fact that life in Venezuela is expensive. On top of this, we are in a terrible crisis. For example, we have a poor system for electricity. As a result, we do not have light for six hours per day. Lacking light and internet makes it impossible for a lawyer like myself to operate. The problem with the light and the internet, however, is nothing compared with the nation’s medical situation. Also, many people are now moving away from Venezuela, so it is very difficult to find workers in the court system or at the department of justice. A few days ago, I had a meeting with a friend who works at the court of law in my city. I asked her how the system is working at the moment. Then, she answered, “We don’t have people working. We are a small group of people who are not going anywhere. We have a big delay with the cases of law. We have many inquiries from clients for divorce cases, but we can’t do anything.” The people who are working in law in Venezuela are only working in this field because they truly love their career and want to change the current situation. Many people here believe that you can change the situation by working hard, and I believe this, too. In this respect, the current situation in Venezuela is not a demotivating factor in my life.

I have been very clear about my short- and long-term goals. In the near future, I will be moving to Madrid to earn a master’s degree in marketing direction and commercial management. I know this does not match my law career interest, but I also love business and marketing, as they are the future. I want to increase my knowledge in these areas to change the situation in my country. Then, I want to move back to Venezuela to passionately practice my law career again.

Maria Suerez from Venezuela April 2018.

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