From ArticleWorld

An Advocate generally is a person who pleads, intercedes, or speaks on behalf of another, and is frequently a lawyer or a paralegal. It also means a person whose profession is to plead causes in courts of law. This is especially the usage in Scotland. In the USA it means any lawyer. Advocating starts with the surmise that the people being advocated do not have the intellect, skill, capability or even the status to act for themselves.

Faculty of Advocates

The Faculty of Advocates is an independent body of lawyers who have been admitted to practice as advocates before the Courts of Scotland. The Faculty has been in existence since the College of Justice was established in Scotland in 1532 by an Act of the Scottish Parliament. The Faculty is controlled by its Dean, who is elected by the full membership, all of whom are also elected. The Faculty includes practicing and non-practicing members; their total number now stands at 750 members of whom just over 460 are practicing members. One fifth of the practicing members are Queen’s Counsel, known as taking the silk.

For the purpose of being organized into administrative groups and proper fee collection the Faculty has Faculty Services to which all advocates belong. This assures the new entrants of a place in the service.

Training and education

To gain admission to the College, all advocates must hold a law degree qualifying them as lawyers. Devilling (from The Devil’s Advocate) means 8 to 10 months of hard work and labor, out of which about ten weeks are spent in intensive skills training courses. Apart from these compulsory courses each devil spends time with two or sometimes three devil-masters who are experts in their specialized fields of civil and criminal law. Devils also spend part of the training period in the court with their principal devil-master who is a civil law practitioner. At the end of the training period, and only after the explicit approval of the devil-master, a devil becomes eligible to apply for admission to the Faculty.

In recent years lawyers from other countries in Europe have been allowed admission to the College and are called Eurodevils to differentiate them from the Scottish devils.

Famous Advocates

John Balfour, Alexander Boswell, James Boswell, David Darlymple.