Solicitors, Trainees, Recruiters, Final year law students.....Help!!!!!!

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NotYourMom
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Hey guys,

I am finishing my final year of LLB law degree and I have not secured a vacation scheme or training contract yet. Mainly because of my first year grades which reflects to main law firms that I am inconsistent (According to their feedback).

My second year grades are good and now I am aiming for 1st in my final year. Also I am studying in a non-russell group university which to be honest from what I heard first hand from certain partners the law firms judge you by where you went and what did you get for your degree.

I have applied for LPC but I am not sure whether is it worth it anymore since I still haven't secured a training contract yet.

I don't know whether to apply for any training contract since I haven't done any vacation scheme with law firm yet.

Guys, I need your honest advice as to what to do. Please help!
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Le Nombre
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Apply for vac schemes.

Then apply for TCs, worst case scenario they reject you and you're still in the same position.

If nothing comes of that I'd recommend trying paralegal work. You might only get in house/project roles at first, but it's a stepping stone.
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happyinthehaze
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Are you saying you have no legal experience at all? If that is the case and you are serious about it all, then you need to get some! This will help you get a VS, which will help you get a TC.

If you need a firm to pay for your LPC, then you probably do need to get TCs from VS. If you don't need a firm to pay for your LPC, then you can get to a TC without having to do any VS. But you do need commitment, you need to be good, you need to do good apps, you need to be good in IV and have a bit of luck but you definitely need to have legal work experience, in whatever form, to show the commitment to law and to make your CV impressive.

Basically, just keep on going with it all


(Original post by NotYourMom)
Hey guys,

I am finishing my final year of LLB law degree and I have not secured a vacation scheme or training contract yet. Mainly because of my first year grades which reflects to main law firms that I am inconsistent (According to their feedback).

My second year grades are good and now I am aiming for 1st in my final year. Also I am studying in a non-russell group university which to be honest from what I heard first hand from certain partners the law firms judge you by where you went and what did you get for your degree.

I have applied for LPC but I am not sure whether is it worth it anymore since I still haven't secured a training contract yet.

I don't know whether to apply for any training contract since I haven't done any vacation scheme with law firm yet.

Guys, I need your honest advice as to what to do. Please help!
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NotYourMom
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Thanks for all the advice guys!

The problem is that I am an International student so I'm a bit worried even if I do LPC this September and NOT secure a training contract by before next September I will have to leave UK. In which case my 5 years preparation in UK of doing AS, A Levels and then this Law degree in order to become a solicitor in UK will be pointless and I will be in a massive student loan debt.

To top it off, both the political parties, Labour and Conservatives are not interested in bring back the work permit visa(tier 1) after graduating.

I'm so worried about this!
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NotYourMom
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Ya but in order to apply for tier 2 the law firms must sponsor me....without a secured training contract it doesn't seem possible.

On the other hand, I don't know whether it is worth the gamble to spend £14,000 for LPC this September since I still haven't done any VS so no way for me to get TC.

Or I don't know how to find a paralegal job at a firm since I have no experience. I do have experience working as a law firm assistant but it was in a different country and firms don't seem to take that in to must consideration when I applied and when I networked with them.

What do you think I should do If I don't mind asking you?


(Original post by J-SP)
A tier 1 visa wouldn't have helped you anyway. Most law firms used to apply for tier 2 visas for their trainees as the tier 1 visa would often run out before the training contract was complete!

You can apply for training contracts from abroad, so your dream doesn't evaporate the moment you have to leave the UK.


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CGSW
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I am studying at a non-russel group uni too, although its Aberdeen which is still respected in Scotland as it's been teaching law since 1495, but I seriously doubt law firms are going to take that into account. I have a vacation scheme at a top law firm in Edinburgh which is really hard to get into, and I know someone who previously got the same vacation scheme despite studying at Napier, which isn't usually regarded as being the creme de la creme of law schools, but this shows its all down to your grades and how you make the most of the opportunity you have.


Apply for as many VS' as possible, and if you get rejected apply again (if the firm lets multiple applications), persistence is key. If you have applied for less than 30 then you haven't tried hard enough.
Apply for training contracts too. In Scotland the DPLP allows you two years to gain a training contract after graduation, and if the English system is similar then this is 3 years potential of gaining a vacation scheme and/or training contracts. persist! good luck
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NotYourMom
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Hey I can't thank you enough guys for clarifying it in more detail.

My visa expires in October this year, because of the limited time I have whilst in UK, I need to find a solution ASAP for all the work I had put in so far in order to become a solicitor in a UK commercial law firm. Hence the reason why I am deeply worried about not having secured a vacation scheme in order to secure a training contract(the recruitment team of all the firms I applied said that their current trainee solicitors have done a vacation scheme with them before, which gave them an idea of what kind of work is required of them and the culture of firm that's why they were able to secure a training contract with them).

In my case, even though I got 1st and 2.1 for modules during my second year, my first year results were poor plus I did 1 A Level. However, I did mention that I did two foundation year degrees(one in Law and other in Engineering) instead of A Levels but they were not satisfy with it saying that I seem to show inconsistency.

Later, I personally contacted a corporate lawyer in one of the Magic circle firm and showed him my CV. In his own words he said that my work experience and achievements are solid and he liked it but he mentioned whenever I apply to a firm, the first thing the recruitment team looks for are the grades and which university I am studying in. At a glance, he said it seems to him that there is inconsistent with the marks I have achieved and that's the first step I need to get through before the recruitment team would look at my experience etc.

So he advised me to first focus on getting a first during my third year and after exams are over to apply for a paralegal job instead of wasting time and money on doing LPC after my LLB law degree. But he wasn't aware that I am an International student and my visa expires in October.

So this is what is scaring me now and obviously I am working hard right now in order to get a 1st but don't know what exactly to do afterwards? This is the part where I need your advice on what to do next as soon as my studies are over?


(Original post by J-SP)
What I am trying to stress to you is they wouldn't have employed you on a tier 1 visa though!

I am guessing your student visa ends in December/January time? If this is the case, this gives you plenty of time to try and secure a TC either over the summer or when applications open in October/November.

Firms can apply for a visa for you while you are in your home country - there is no time pressure on here, getting a visa is not dependent on you being in the UK.

But it is highly unlikely you will get a sponsored visa by a law firm for a paralegal role. They rarely meet the points based criteria needed for the Tier 2 visa.

Firms will take international experience into account. The only issue with it is that it can make people question why you are choosing to do your career in the UK rather than your home country.


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Stack v Dowden
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There is time pressure though: if he obtains a Tier 2 visa before the expiry of his current visa, he will not be counted as a new immigrant by the Home Office and thus not be subject to the annual quota on non-EU immigrants, meaning getting a job offer now (and thus avoiding potential visa problems) would be much more preferable...
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kalntax
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(Original post by J-SP)
That issue is bound to happen no matter. For most law firms recruiting 3 years ahead, it means they are going to have a gap at some point (whether it's before or after their LPC) and therefore will have to return home and be part of the quota.

Plus the national quota is pretty high (having only been reached once in a number of years), so it's not too much of an issue.


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Since many firms require students to do the LPC right before starting the training contract, won't most international students who intend to start their TC in London already have a student visa beforehand - hence circumventing the national quota issues?
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Birmingham City University
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Hey there it's Amanda here at BCU! I just wanted to introduce you to our graduate Emma who's doing her training contract at the moment for a Birmingham law firm. She's shared her advice on how to get ahead in law so I'm hoping this might help! See www.bcu.ac.uk/how-to/emma
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TurboCretin
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(Original post by J-SP)
That issue is bound to happen no matter. For most law firms recruiting 3 years ahead, it means they are going to have a gap at some point (whether it's before or after their LPC) and therefore will have to return home and be part of the quota.

Plus the national quota is pretty high (having only been reached once in a number of years), so it's not too much of an issue.


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An acquaintance of mine narrowly avoided a nightmare with her TC because of this quota, to be fair.
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The Sociopath
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As I understand it foreign students need to have secured a job earning £35k+ to stay in the UK post-graduation?
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The Sociopath
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(Original post by J-SP)
Not quite true. I think the general benchmark is just over £20k although that might be changing.

However, there's lots of terms and conditions of tier 2 visa which mean it isn't as simplistic as that. There is also a quota for those not transferring directly from a tier 4 visa.

If you are in a role deemed to be on the shortage of workers list, then there's more flexibility.
http://www.workpermit.com/news/2015-...rom-april-2016
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-17204297


What am I missing?
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The Sociopath
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(Original post by J-SP)
That's indefinite leave to remain, not a tier 2 if I am reading it right.
Ah, I see. My apologies.
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Abru001
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How hard it is to find a job as a paralegal after GDL or LPC for an international student? Are paralegals given tier 2 sponsorship?
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Dina28.
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(Original post by NotYourMom)
Ya but in order to apply for tier 2 the law firms must sponsor me....without a secured training contract it doesn't seem possible.

On the other hand, I don't know whether it is worth the gamble to spend £14,000 for LPC this September since I still haven't done any VS so no way for me to get TC.

Or I don't know how to find a paralegal job at a firm since I have no experience. I do have experience working as a law firm assistant but it was in a different country and firms don't seem to take that in to must consideration when I applied and when I networked with them.

What do you think I should do If I don't mind asking you?
Hi, I am also an International Student hopig to secure a TC, I am just starting University, may I ask, what is VS?
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