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New York bar exam 'qualifying pro bono service' requirement Watch

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    The 'New York bar + QLTS' route is often referred to as the cheaper alternative to the traditional 'LPC + TC' route to qualifying as an English solicitor. I've checked this route out and it seems it isn't as rosy as it appears to be.

    Since last year, those who aren't yet a qualified lawyer in another jurisdiction and now want to be admitted to the New York bar must complete at least 50 hours of 'qualifying pro bono service' in addition to passing the bar exam (http://www.nybarexam.org/Rules/Rules.htm#520.16): the pro bono service can be completed before or after sitting the bar exam.

    Is there anyone here who has sat the New York bar exam last year or are planning to sit the exam this year/next year? Does anyone know how to meet this requirement outside the US? It seems impossible to meet this requirement if you aren't living in the US.
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    Unless you are doing it with an existing employer, then you should treat this route to qualifying with extreme caution. When you go for a job as an NQ the traditional tc trained candidate will have a massive advantage because they have two years training and experience. If you are good enough then you will get a TC if you keep on trying.
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    For similar reasons to those mentioned above, I wouldn't recommend this route even if the pro bono element wasn't included in the requirements.

    Entering the UK legal job market as a qualified lawyer with no formal work experience like a training contract either makes you 1) over qualified for a TC or 2) lacking experience to compare to and compete with others going for a NQ role.

    Some firms do take on "legal assistants" - they are qualified lawyers who do the equivalent of a TC, but these are far and few between. The other issue is if you take this route you are looking for a role immediately and most firms are recruiting vacancies 2-3 years in advance.

    And then you have to put yourself through 2 lots of assessments, which are known to not be the easiest thing to complete and haven't got great pass rates either.


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    I know a few people for whom this path worked out very poorly. Not everyone gets to qualify. Recruiters arent stupid, they know youve just paid for another exam and they know the fact it isnt a TC. Sabe your money go and do something else imo.
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    (Original post by Doug T.)
    The 'New York bar + QLTS' route is often referred to as the cheaper alternative to the traditional 'LPC + TC' route to qualifying as an English solicitor. I've checked this route out and it seems it isn't as rosy as it appears to be.

    Since last year, those who aren't yet a qualified lawyer in another jurisdiction and now want to be admitted to the New York bar must complete at least 50 hours of 'qualifying pro bono service' in addition to passing the bar exam (http://www.nybarexam.org/Rules/Rules.htm#520.16): the pro bono service can be completed before or after sitting the bar exam.

    Is there anyone here who has sat the New York bar exam last year or are planning to sit the exam this year/next year? Does anyone know how to meet this requirement outside the US? It seems impossible to meet this requirement if you aren't living in the US.
    If you read the rules properly you will see that there is no problem in doing it abroad. You need supervision either from a legal academic, so that means participating in a Streetlaw or legal clinic programme at university or a practising lawyer. That means either interning without pay in a law firm that does legal aid or working pro bono in an advice agency with an in house lawyer or persuading the honorary legal adviser to say a CAB to supervise you.




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    I would avoid at all costs.

    Qualifying through this route would immediately set off the 'warning alarms' for any potential UK based firm.

    You'd be better off using the money to bribe the HR department of whatever firm you were applying to!
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    I am not as pessimistic as others about finding a position on the back of the New York route as others are. You aren't going to waltz into a magic circle firm any more than you will walk into a white shoe firm.

    However if you are prepared to take a realistic salary, and particularly if you are prepared to do magistrates court criminal or family advocacy where your audience rights would be of value, you should find something.

    However the QLTS rather than the old QLTT is designed to be passed by those who have real world legal experience rather than folk who are good at swatting from a textbook. It will be hard to do their roleplay tests if you have never had a role in real life.
 
 
 
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