I can't decide! Need some help innit Watch

Lush Law
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#1
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I really really really omg cannot decide between the Bar or solicitor. At uni I have done loads to boost my CV for the Bar. I've done everything possible. For ages I wanted to do it, but the more I think about it, the more I realise that now I'm going into 3rd year of my law degree in September, the closer doing the BVC is becoming and the closer attempting to get a pupillage is becoming.

Deep down, I know I want it. I love advocacy, I love speaking [it's what I do best], I love law. But I just don't think I want it enough. And not wanting it enough makes me think I won't get a pupillage.

Also, being realistic, I'm not at Oxbridge or one of the elite, which already puts me at a disadvantage in terms of the Bar. I can get the grades to make myself stand out - I averaged 72% this year and got the academic award for Tort.

In terms of the LPC/TC route, I really do like the idea and security of joining a firm with a good starting salary etc. I've applied for quite a few TC's. But I realise when I'm filling in the forms that I really don't know what solicitors actually do.

I'm torn between having the guts to go for the Bar and taking a massive risk, or doing the LPC and hopefully getting a TC.

Is anyone else in my position/have any advice?
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Vohamanah
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Have you done mini-pupillages and vac schemes? Which did you prefer?

Also consider being a solicitor-advocate. Although the sexy advocacy may be a little further down the line than if you were a barrister, the area of solicitor-led advocacy is only really now opening up, so I would imagine it will become a much more accepted route once it is more established.
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Lush Law
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I've done mini-pupillages - loved them. I applied for a few schemes but only got a 2.2 in my first year and didn't get one. I had an assessment day at a firm but got no further. I've done work experience at law firms though and liked it. I'm just so torn/can't decide!
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Vohamanah
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What areas of law interest you? What sort of environment do you want to work in?
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chalks
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(Original post by Lush Law)
I really really really omg cannot decide between the Bar or solicitor. At uni I have done loads to boost my CV for the Bar. I've done everything possible. For ages I wanted to do it, but the more I think about it, the more I realise that now I'm going into 3rd year of my law degree in September, the closer doing the BVC is becoming and the closer attempting to get a pupillage is becoming.

Deep down, I know I want it. I love advocacy, I love speaking [it's what I do best], I love law. But I just don't think I want it enough. And not wanting it enough makes me think I won't get a pupillage.

Also, being realistic, I'm not at Oxbridge or one of the elite, which already puts me at a disadvantage in terms of the Bar. I can get the grades to make myself stand out - I averaged 72% this year and got the academic award for Tort.

In terms of the LPC/TC route, I really do like the idea and security of joining a firm with a good starting salary etc. I've applied for quite a few TC's. But I realise when I'm filling in the forms that I really don't know what solicitors actually do.

I'm torn between having the guts to go for the Bar and taking a massive risk, or doing the LPC and hopefully getting a TC.

Is anyone else in my position/have any advice?

I'm a little surprised that you've applied for quite a few training contracts when you don't know what solicitors do. If that doesn't stand out on those application forms, then it certainly will when you come to interview.

It seems to me that the Bar is what you want to do, but as it comes to the crunch you're getting understandably nervous of being unable to secure a pupillage. That shouldn't dissuade you. You seem to have good academics and other achievements which should prove attractive to chambers. I'd suggest you stick with the Bar.

If you try the solicitor route I imagine you will always be wondering what might have been. My personal experience is that it will be a long time before solicitor-advocacy becomes a viable alternative for young lawyers who want to undertake serious advocacy (by which I mean more than the odd application for an extension of time or summary judgment).

At the risk of sounding like your Dad, I think you need to sit down and work out exactly what you like about the law and what you see yourself doing. Where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years? What would give you personal satisfaction/happiness - job security? Status? Money? Nice wig? Intellectual challenge? etc etc

Do some serious research into the solicitor side of the profession and try and understand what the different areas of practice might involve (i.e. litigation which might be attractive to you). When you say you enjoy advocacy, do you mean you enjoy speaking in a formal Court setting or that you enjoy trying to influence others with your arguments?
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Lewisy-boy
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That's agood point - if you went into litigation as a solicitor you would get to do quite a bit of negotiation etc as quite a few claims settle these days.
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Lush Law
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Thanks.

I do know what solicitors do, I do, but I don't know as much about that side of the legal profession as I do about the Bar.

It's guna be a hard decision, but I just couldn't allow my parents to spend thousands on the BVC/London living costs to then not get a pupillage. I'd feel really guilty. arrghh decisions!
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Pen73669
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(Original post by Lush Law)
Thanks.

I do know what solicitors do, I do, but I don't know as much about that side of the legal profession as I do about the Bar.

It's guna be a hard decision, but I just couldn't allow my parents to spend thousands on the BVC/London living costs to then not get a pupillage. I'd feel really guilty. arrghh decisions!
I think you see taking the solicitor route as an easy alternative - It's not. Yes it's easier than getting a pupillage as there are more TCs but there are still far more LPC graduates than there are TCs. Also if your choosing it because you may not get a pupillage firms will see this in your applications and may not invite you for interview.

I think you should decide what you want to do then go for it!! If being a barrister is what you want do it. I didn't have a TC when I started the LPC and was worried about the money I was spending but I worked hard and applied for TCs all year (feels like I was filling in forms 4ever). I finally secured a TC this week. Yes it was hard but it was what I wanted to do. If the Bar is what you want go for it - you can't suceed if you don't try

Good luck!! Sorry this post has turned into a mini essay
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Lush Law
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No no I don't see the LPC/TC route as easier, I just meant that it's less financially draining if you manage to get a TC before starting the LPC, then firms pay your fees. Also, chances of getting a TC after finishing the LPC are surely far higher than the chances of gaining a pupillage. I certainly don't see becoming solicitor as the easier option!

But yeah I agree I should follow my heart. The thing is, my CV is sooo tailored for the Bar it's ridiculous, almost too Bar suited to apply for TC's and not look like a pupillage candidate lol. When applying for TC's I have just twisted all my Bar related stuff and put like 'this has developed my interpersonal and leadership skills' lol.

Think I just need to stop sitting on the fence and make a decision.
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Lewisy-boy
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#10
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Thing is... I do see solicitor as an easier option. I want to be a solicitor, and I won't deny that it is "easier". This is not to say, however, that is "easy"... big difference.
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