How To Become A Lawyer
There are now many different routes into the legal profession, which is a positive step for the diversification and accessibility of our profession. We have set out a brief overview of the three most common routes to becoming a lawyer below, together with some useful links which should provide further information in this regard. There are also a number of other routes into the law, such as legal apprenticeships and paralegal roles.
Solicitors provide day-to-day professional advice on a range of legal matters to their clients, who may be private individuals or companies. Solicitors typically specialise in one area of law once they have qualified, and law firms generally practice several areas of law depending on their size. Solicitors may be employed by a law firm or they might work in-house at another company or organisation.
For more information about how to become a solicitor, visit: www.lawsociety.org.uk
Barristers typically provide advocacy or specialist advice. They may be referred to as "Counsel" and will spend more time appearing in court on behalf of a client, often instructed by a solicitor. Barristers are normally self-employed and work out of Barrister's Chambers, but they may also work for other organisations or even in-house at a firm of solicitors.
For more information about how to become a barrister, visit: www.barcouncil.org.uk
The Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEX): CILEX provides a different route into law, which can be more flexible. CILEX's Professional Qualification currently offers qualification as a CILEX Lawyer, a CILEX Paralegal or a CILEX Advanced Paralegal. Those qualifying as a CILEX Lawyer undertake work similar to a solicitor but will generally specialise in a particular area of law at an earlier stage.
For more information about CILEX, visit: www.cilex.org.uk