If you decide that a career as a lawyer is for you, there are a few things you should be doing even before you begin university. Here is a checklist to get you started: Your ‘first steps’ checklist:
If you might be interested in a future career as a lawyer, but don’t know where to start, The Beginner’s Guide to a Career in Law is for you. In this guide you will find information about what a job in law involves, the differences between the three main types of lawyer (solicitors, barristers and chartered legal executives), and the courses and training you need to complete to qualify. There are also some key questions to ask yourself and information about the next steps to take for those who want to find out more. The Beginner’s Guide is brought to you by LawCareers.Net (LCN), the number one resource for those interested in joining the legal profession. On the website you will find employer profiles; interviews with law firm recruiters, trainees, associates and partners; advice from LCN’s resident agony aunt, the Oracle; blogs and videos from people at different stages of their legal careers; information on law courses (undergraduate and postgraduate); and a searchable database of training contract and pupillage vacancies. Welcome to the first stage of your legal career!
Talk to your careers adviser at school to go through your options.
Research the different paths into law – university, chartered legal executive, paralegal, apprenticeship (read The Law Apprenticeships Guide 2020 ) – and decide which is right for you. Get some practical work experience at a law firm, barristers’ chambers or legal advice centre; it will help you to decide what suits you best and will also improve any applications you make later. Work hard at your academic studies. Excellent grades are essential! Talk to friends, parents, acquaintances – anyone with a connection to the legal profession; they may also be able to help you get some work experience. Think about the kinds of extracurricular activities you can do, or have done, to make yourself into a well-rounded candidate. Think sport, volunteering, drama, music… Sign up to a free LawCareers.Net account. You will receive our weekly email newsletter with news and information about the profession, plus gain access to MyLCN. Read the business pages of the newspapers to improve your commercial awareness and get you starting to ‘think business’.
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