Firms in this industry provide the services of lawyers and other legal practitioners to individuals, businesses, government agencies, and non-profits. In addition to offices of lawyers, the industry includes establishments that provide paralegal, notary public, process serving, and patent agent services.
The legal profession has its origins in ancient Greece and Rome. Although in Greece it was forbidden to take payment for pleading the cause of another, the rule was widely flouted. After the time of Claudius, lawyers (iuris consulti) could practise openly but their remuneration was limited. Modern day legal professionals certainly earn much more than their ancient counterparts, but this is the reward for the need to study harder, developing skills and applying their field of law successfully.