Legal Recruitment from Ten-Percent Legal

Friday, February 17, 2012

Qualify as a Solicitor without a Training Contract

We (Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment) were called today by a student with a very interesting proposition.

In view of the Alternative Business Structures, if your plan is to run your own law firm once qualified, why bother getting a training contract?

I started to reel off the usual stuff about training contracts and becoming a solicitor before thinking this through. She (the student) has a very valid point.

Why bother getting a training contract and going through all the hassle of qualifying as a solicitor if you can set up your own law firm, recruit a solicitor to be a partner (and after all in the current market law firms seem to think that solicitors don't need to be paid a salary anyway!), get them to give you a training contract at some point and qualify whenever you feel like it? Furthermore, you can use the Law Society/SRA exemption for any work that you have done already that is at training contract level?

How much money could be saved?

Professional Indemnity insurance is likely to be around the £400 per month mark, and a solicitor to act as the supervisor for the SRA would probably cost about £600 per month on a retainer, plus about £25-30 per hour of actual work undertaken.

Assuming it takes 2 years to qualify, what would the cost be, similarly assuming that the law firm makes some money in the meantime? I reckon it would probably cost less than about £30,000, which rumour has it is the price that some high street solicitors firms charge desperate graduates to give them a training contract...

If this is the case, and law firms as we know them are soon to be a thing of the past, why does anyone need to do a training contract with a high street law firm?


Jonathan Fagan is Managing Director of Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment - Online Legal Recruitment for Solicitors, Legal Executives, Fee Earners, Support Staff, Managers and Paralegals. Visit our Website to search or download our Vacancy Database or view our Candidate Database online.

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