In the English Language, a simple letter can change the way words are used and what they’re supposed to mean. Basic English rules include verbs, nouns, adjectives that shape the way a certain word is, differentiating it from other homophones.
Two such homophones are used more in the legal arena, council and counsel. Let’s see what each of these mean and how they are differentiated from one another.
The word ‘counsel’ is a verb, meaning an action word that highlights an action being done in a sentence. To counsel means to advise, to give guidelines and to mentor someone. Counsel is widely referred to as giving advice, like a legal attorney or lawyer. Counselor is another word for the noun form of counsel, or adviser.
There are certain variations to the word counsel too, let’s take a look.
- Joe Humphrey is counsel to the Highland Company. (counsel as a noun meaning adviser).
- He counseled the company during the hostile takeover. (counsel as a verb meaning to advise)
- His counsel was critical to the plan’s success. (counsel as a noun meaning advice)
- He’s a loner who keeps his own counsel. (counsel as a noun meaning guarded thoughts)
- Ms. Greene is one of the counselors in the program. (advisers)
A ‘council’ is a noun used to describe an assembly or a meeting where legal/official matters are being discussed. A member of the council may also be called a councilor.
- The city council met today to vote on the new benefits package.
- One of the councilors abstained from voting.
- Finally, consul, a noun, means a person appointed to represent a government in a foreign country.
- The President appointed Alex Fisher’s consul to Albania.
Is Counsel an Attorney?
Of counsel is the title of an attorney in the legal profession of the United States who frequently has a relationship with a law office or an association yet is neither a partner nor associate. A few firms use titles, for example, ‘counsel’, ‘special counsel’, and ‘senior counsel’ for a similar idea. A counsel or an attorney is an individual who offers guidance and manages different issues, especially in legal matters. It is a title frequently utilized reciprocally with the title of lawyer.The word counsel can likewise mean advice given outside the legal profession.
A council and counsel are both referred to in legal settings, but there is a difference of rules of English Language. Counsel is a verb whereas council is a noun, to counsel is to give advice and council is the setting where guidance is being done and where advice is being given.