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THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND HOW TO GET INTO IT PowerPoint Presentation
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THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND HOW TO GET INTO IT

THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND HOW TO GET INTO IT

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THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND HOW TO GET INTO IT

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  1. THE LEGAL PROFESSION AND HOW TO GET INTO IT Career paths in the legal profession Professional training courses and funding Who employs lawyers? What to do and when to do it The slides from this presentation are available at www.kent.ac.uk/careers/slides.htm

  2. SOME CAREER PATHS IN THE LEGAL PROFESSION • Solicitor • Barrister • Legal executive • Paralegal • Licensed conveyancer For more detail on these and other roles in law, see the Legal Sector Briefing at www.prospects.ac.uk/links/LegalSB

  3. MAKING DECISIONS Solicitor or barrister? Both require: • Proven intellectual ability • Excellent communication skills • Analytical skills • Organisational skills • Commercial awareness • Determination and commitment

  4. WHAT DO SOLICITORS DO? • Work directly with clients to advise them on a wide range of legal matters • Prepare cases – researching, drafting, liaising with other parties in the case, etc • Attend court, and may represent clients in court

  5. WHO EMPLOYS SOLICITORS? • Law firms – employ 76% of practising solicitors) • Large international firms • Large UK-focused firms • National/regional firms • Specialist (“niche”) firms • “High Street” firms • In-house legal departments in: • Business and finance (9%) • The public and voluntary sectors (12%)

  6. THE SOLICITORS’ PROFESSION – SOME STATISTICS • 108,407 practising solicitors • 42% of these work in London (where 27% of firms are located) • 43% of practising solicitors are women • 9.5% of practising solicitors are from ethnic minority groups

  7. WHAT DO BARRISTERS DO? • Independent specialist legal advisers and advocates • The majority are self-employed but work together in sets of chambers • Others are employed in solicitors’ firms, business and public sector organisations • Need outstanding all-round communication and intellectual skills

  8. THE BARRISTERS’ PROFESSION – SOME STATISTICS • 15,030 practising barristers • 80% of these are self-employed • 66% men; 34% women; 11% from ethnic minorities • Approximately two-thirds of barristers are based in London

  9. WHAT THE SOLICITORS PROFESSION OFFERS • A more structured career path • Greater security • Greater support, including continuing professional training • Greater involvement with clients and demands • Commitment to a firm and its culture • Team working skills • Sociability; adaptability; willingness to conform

  10. WHAT THE BAR OFFERS • Greater independence • More opportunity for advocacy • Variety and demands … • Greater personal confidence • A willingness to take risks • High-level presentational skills • Flexibility and tolerance of stress

  11. MAKING DECISIONS • Talk to practising solicitors and/or barristers • Get work experience • Use law careers publications and websites • Use the Careers Advisory Service!

  12. BECOMING A SOLICITOR OR BARRISTER Solicitors ? ?? QUALIFY ASSISTANT SOLICITOR LPC TRAINING CONTRACT LAW DEGREE ??? ? ? BVC CALL TO THE BAR TENANCY PUPILLAGE Barristers

  13. PROFESSIONAL LAW COURSES • Legal Practice Course/Bar Vocational Course • Skills-focused: preparation for practice • Coursework, practical assessments and written exams • Last for one academic year • Available throughout England & Wales • Must have the 7 exemption subjects for entry • Apply at the beginning of your final year • Fees range from approx. £6700 to £14000

  14. THE LEGAL PRACTICE COURSE Stage One • 3 core practice areas (compulsory): • Business law and practice; Litigation (civil & criminal); Property law and practice • Conduct & Regulation (including accounts) • An overview of Wills & Tax • Skills • Research; Writing; Drafting; Advocacy; • Interviewing & Advising Stage Two • 3 vocational electives

  15. THE BAR VOCATIONAL COURSE • Seven core skills (60% of the course) • Legal research; Fact management; Opinion writing; Drafting; Conference skills; Negotiation; Advocacy • Three “knowledge areas” • Civil Litigation; Criminal Litigation; Evidence • Background and Pervasive subjects • Professional Ethics; Human Rights; Accounts and Revenue; Business Associations • Options

  16. HOW DO STUDENTS FUND THEIR LAW COURSES?

  17. OTHER ROUTES INTO LAW • Legal Executive • Paralegal • Licensed Conveyancer • Notary

  18. WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING NOW • Working hard and aiming for a good degree! • Thinking about your options • Researching different careers and employers • Thinking about what you have to offer • Starting to apply for vacation workexperience • Noting deadlines for training contract, pupillage and course applications

  19. WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING NOW Career planning guides for: • Potential solicitors • Potential barristers • The undecided can be downloaded in Word format from the “Career Planning Timetable” for law students atwww.kent.ac.uk/careers/law.htm#timetable

  20. USEFUL INFORMATION SOURCES • www.kent.ac.uk/careers/siteslaw.htm • Target Law/Target Work Experience Law • The Training Contract & Pupillage Handbook • Prospects Law • Lawyer 2B magazine

  21. ANY QUESTIONS?