There are several levels of knowledge that you can acquire about a topic once you start studying it. Deciding on which level you want to adhere to is all about ascertaining the kind of life that you want for yourself once all has been said and is now out of the way. The reason behind this is that the knowledge needs of someone that will use this information in a professional capacity will be decidedly different from those of someone or the other that wants to advance knowledge from an academic point of view.
One question that we get asked quite often is whether or not you need to acquire a PhD to become a patent attorney that can work for big name firms like Incubate IP. Suffice it to say that you don’t need to go this far at all, and in fact doing so might delay your career much more than might have been the case otherwise. After all, doctorates are purely academic and once you have gotten your JD you will already have more than enough information to make you capable of dealing with cases in a practical manner.
Hence, you should not concern yourself with getting a doctorate if you want to become an attorney. This type of education is only for those that want to acquire theoretical knowledge that would not make all that much sense in the real world. This is not something that is required for attorneys that fight cases in court, although it can help you get teaching positions at law schools if you feel that that is something that would be worth your while all in all.