Applying for vac schemes when already got a training contract Watch

twfywngby
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 4 years ago
#1
I have accepted a training contract offer from a firm I completed a vacation scheme with in the summer.

I didn't actually like the firm very much or particularly enjoy the vac scheme, but I didn't have any other offers so I accepted.

I am now in the process of applying for vacation schemes at other firms (without telling/rejecting the firm that I accepted a TC offer from, as I'd like to keep that as a back up) and I'm looking for advice on how to approach this in interviews with the firms that I am now applying to.

Is there any reason why I would not just be completely open about the situation (my preferred option)?

Is there any risk that this could get back to my current/"back up" firm?

Has anyone else done this?

Thanks!
0
reply
J-SP
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#2
Report 4 years ago
#2
Technically you shouldn't have accepted your offer. You should have asked for an extension to consider the offer while you sought out other potential firms.

If you declare it, most firms won't go anywhere near you, as under the SRA guidelines you have accepted an offer.

You might want to read this http://www.sra.org.uk/documents/stud...untarycode.pdf.


Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
Matt Tracker
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#3
Report 4 years ago
#3
If you really cannot see any difficulties with your proposed course of action I do wonder about your judgment.
0
reply
twfywngby
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#4
Report Thread starter 4 years ago
#4
Thanks, J-SP. That's helpful. I have heard of firms abiding by the letter but perhaps not the spirit of the voluntary code in the past, and was hoping someone might have an anecdotal account of this falling into that category. But the code seems pretty categorical about my situation (Students [no apostrophe, nice one SRA] Responsibilities, 4.]


Cheers for the laconic reply, Matt. I do anticipate some difficulties - hence the question - but if you have any in particular in mind your insight would be appreciated!


I feel like this must happen all the time though. In the current climate you'd have to be crazy to turn down a TC. But say your circumstances change - you unexpectedly pull a First out of the bag, or whatever (not what happened in my case) - and you think you can "upgrade" to a "better" firm. Are you simply expected to withdraw from the original TC before applying to others? But people, plausibly, withdraw from TCs all the time (I know several people who have) - personal circumstances, illness, change of career plans. I don't really see where the harm is, or how the situation is differentiated from that where an applicant, for instance, does two vac schemes and gets two offers. There, as here, one vac scheme or offered place will be "wasted" when the applicant rejects one of the firms. The only difference is that, in my situation, the rejection of the firm that first offered me would come a year down the line. I feel they'd be unlikely to struggle to fill my place... (equality of bargaining power, mm).


*Anyway* - does anyone else have any positive/optimistic accounts/suggestions of how I might make this work?
0
reply
J-SP
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#5
Report 4 years ago
#5
(Original post by twfywngby)
Thanks, J-SP. That's helpful. I have heard of firms abiding by the letter but perhaps not the spirit of the voluntary code in the past, and was hoping someone might have an anecdotal account of this falling into that category. But the code seems pretty categorical about my situation (Students [no apostrophe, nice one SRA] Responsibilities, 4.]


Cheers for the laconic reply, Matt. I do anticipate some difficulties - hence the question - but if you have any in particular in mind your insight would be appreciated!


I feel like this must happen all the time though. In the current climate you'd have to be crazy to turn down a TC. But say your circumstances change - you unexpectedly pull a First out of the bag, or whatever (not what happened in my case) - and you think you can "upgrade" to a "better" firm. Are you simply expected to withdraw from the original TC before applying to others? But people, plausibly, withdraw from TCs all the time (I know several people who have) - personal circumstances, illness, change of career plans. I don't really see where the harm is, or how the situation is differentiated from that where an applicant, for instance, does two vac schemes and gets two offers. There, as here, one vac scheme or offered place will be "wasted" when the applicant rejects one of the firms. The only difference is that, in my situation, the rejection of the firm that first offered me would come a year down the line. I feel they'd be unlikely to struggle to fill my place... (equality of bargaining power, mm).


*Anyway* - does anyone else have any positive/optimistic accounts/suggestions of how I might make this work?
My response has always been to tell the candidate that I can't review their application because of the code and that they shouldn't have applied, or the alternative is to withdraw their acceptance before starting the process.

It does probably happen and those who do it probably don't tell anyone. Let's hope the firm you are currently with haven't given you any form of financial support though. If that happens it gets very messy.

The code is there for a reason, mainly to protect the interests of the students and that's why firm's stick to it.

And when people withdraw from TCs its an absolute nightmare. It isn't as easy as just giving it to someone else. You have to go through the process of reclaiming money off them, and often it's actually difficult to fill the vacancy because you haven't got the necessary time frame to put someone through law school (in most instances anyway, and yes you could pick up someone whose already done it but trust me there aren't actually hundreds of those applying). Firms won't re-advertise the vacancy unless they are desperate purely because they can't deal with the extra work load it creates.

If the firm withdrew your offer just because they're thought they could upgrade to someone else, you would be kicking up a fuss.

If more people did what your suggesting, the whole system would be prone to collapsing.

Remember you can always "upgrade" once you qualify.

And to say it's only like withdrawing from a vacation scheme is naive. A vacation scheme does not have any of the significant time or financial commitment dedicated to it that a TC does (for both sides). The difference between a few hundred pounds each week for a couple of weeks versus £20k plus in law school fees/maintenance grants and enrolment fees makes it a little more complicated.

My final point is law firms like loyalty. They will invest around £275,000 worth of money/time training and developing you. Anyone who is seen to be dropping a firm in favour for another usually has a massive question over them about their commitment and loyalty.






Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
J-SP
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#6
Report 4 years ago
#6
Speak/apply to firms who are not signed up to the code (those that give offers before 1st Sept). That's my only "positive" suggestion.


Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
Matt Tracker
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#7
Report 4 years ago
#7
OP - I'll try to explain my post in order to make it more helpful.

My view is that everyone benefits from a system where there are rules regulating behaviour and people abide by them. When I signed my training contract, I took it seriously and recognised that I had made a commitment to my firm. The corollary to applicants continuing to shop around after having signed the contract is that firms could do so also. If my firm ripped up my contract because they had found someone better it would put me in a very difficult position.

If candidates flout the rules it weakens the system and this is to the detriment of most people.

From a practical perspective I think you run the risk of exposing a lack of integrity. I cannot see any answer to question 'who else have you applied to?' that will not undermine you.

If you really don't want to train with the firm you have a TC at, it is best to get back to them and explain that your situation has changed. If you would be happy to train there but think you might be able to do 'better' then it is your call as to what a bird in the hand is worth. To mangle the metaphor further, you cannot keep the bird trapped in your hand whilst you go bush-hunting.

Best of luck with things.
0
reply
twfywngby
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#8
Report Thread starter 4 years ago
#8
Thanks, both - very helpful.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Brexit: Given the chance now, would you vote leave or remain?

Remain (698)
80.51%
Leave (169)
19.49%

Watched Threads

View All
Latest
My Feed