I'm sure that many of you don't know this, but before I became a professional blogger and YouTuber I worked in the legal profession. Many people still ask me how to get a job in the legal profession so I thought I would write a useful blog post about it. It isn't difficult to get a job in the legal profession, the only difficulty can come when you are finding a training contract or pupilage. Otherwise there are plenty of online sites where you can find legal jobs.
There are many routines into the legal profession. You could be a legal secretary, a paralegal, legal executive, a solicitor, barrister or a legal clark amongst others. Not all routes require years of university so think carefully about which route you want to take.
How to become a solicitor
The traditional route into law that most people think about is becoming a solicitor. You will need to go to university and study a law degree, followed by a legal practice course and then a two year training contract. This is the most competitive route into law. You will need good grades, especially to secure a training contract.
It is much lesser known that you can also become a solicitor by working in a law firm as a legal executive and taking an CILEx qualification. You will need at least three years work experience and also have completed your LPC but this is a great way into the profession if you can't manage to secure a training contract.
How to become a Legal Executive
You will need relevant work experience, working as a paralegal for example and you will need to take the CILEx examinations. Once you have done this for the requisite number of years you could take the LPC to become a solicitor, although it is worth bearing in mind that in the modern legal profession Legal Executives rate as highly as solicitors in many areas and command nearly the same level of pay.
How to become a Legal Secretary
Ideally you will have some form of secretarial qualification and some basic legal knowledge would be useful. It is possible to work your way from the bottom up in this job and well respected legal secretaries are worth their weight in gold and can earn as much too!
How to become a paralegal
For most people coming out of a law degree, their first job will be as a paralegal. Often the only qualification you need is a law degree, and in certain areas you might not even need that. Paralegals usually progress onto solicitors or legal executives as they are able to command a better rate of pay.
How to become a Barrister
The route into becoming a barrister is competitive. You will need to complete a qualifying law degree and go onto complete the BVC and then a pupilage with a chambers. Pupilages are often poorly paid and difficult to obtain but the financial rewards of becoming a barrister are worth it once you qualify.
As you can see there are varying routes into the legal profession, and they aren't all as formal as you imagine. If working in this profession is something that you want to do, there's definitely a route that is right for you.
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