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Applying to London firms as an Australian with TC in another jurisdiction watch

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    Hi everyone!

    I'm from Australia, although I've spent the majority of my childhood in London and Hong Kong. Having finished my law degree in Australia, I thought it would be a good idea to apply to Hong Kong for a training contract and I secured one with an international law firm last summer.

    However, I'm now having second thoughts about this due to some changes in my personal circumstances, and am wondering whether it is advisable for me to apply for vac schemes/TC's in London instead, since the firm I signed with has refused to let me relocate. Is it advisable for me to apply to London firms despite having a TC in another jurisdiction, and will I be required to disclose this in the course of my applications? Or will I be required to renege on it before applying to London firms? It would be terribly inconvenient for me to work in HK but since I'm unsure of my chances in London, I am wary of reneging on my TC before receiving an offer in London.

    Any advice is greatly appreciated. Many thanks.
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    (Original post by australiangirl)
    Hi everyone!

    I'm from Australia, although I've spent the majority of my childhood in London and Hong Kong. Having finished my law degree in Australia, I thought it would be a good idea to apply to Hong Kong for a training contract and I secured one with an international law firm last summer.

    However, I'm now having second thoughts about this due to some changes in my personal circumstances, and am wondering whether it is advisable for me to apply for vac schemes/TC's in London instead, since the firm I signed with has refused to let me relocate. Is it advisable for me to apply to London firms despite having a TC in another jurisdiction, and will I be required to disclose this in the course of my applications? Or will I be required to renege on it before applying to London firms? It would be terribly inconvenient for me to work in HK but since I'm unsure of my chances in London, I am wary of reneging on my TC before receiving an offer in London.

    Any advice is greatly appreciated. Many thanks.
    You don't have to disclose it, although it could be beneficial to do so if you can make it very clear you are committed to the UK.

    I am guessing you are aware of the 3-4 year time lag in the recruitment cycle for TC's in the U.K. (Most firms are currently recruiting for their 2019/20 intakes) and that as it currently stands you would also need to study the GDL and LPC in the UK before starting a training contract?

    Most people would eliminate themselves out of a process as it means it can often be quicker to qualify in your home country (or in your case HK) and then move across as a qualified lawyer, rather than wait for the process to be completed in the UK.


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    (Original post by J-SP)
    You don't have to disclose it, although it could be beneficial to do so if you can make it very clear you are committed to the UK.

    I am guessing you are aware of the 3-4 year time lag in the recruitment cycle for TC's in the U.K. (Most firms are currently recruiting for their 2019/20 intakes) and that as it currently stands you would also need to study the GDL and LPC in the UK before starting a training contract?

    Most people would eliminate themselves out of a process as it means it can often be quicker to qualify in your home country (or in your case HK) and then move across as a qualified lawyer, rather than wait for the process to be completed in the UK.


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    Thanks so much for your reply J-SP. Yes, indeed I'm aware of the GDL and LPC requirements, but I'm very keen to relocate to London especially since my family is moving here as well. I am also committed to having a legal career in the UK so it seems to make more sense to start here.

    I also considered qualifying in HK first and moving via the QLTS, but since there are a lot of NQs in the London market every year, I imagine it must be very difficult unless I do an internal transfer via the firm in HK. But then, I'm also not sure of the value of a HK qualification in the London market. It seems to me that it's easier for English qualified lawyers to work in other overseas offices since, from what I know, most offices (even in Australia) need lawyers who are qualified in England and Wales.
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    (Original post by australiangirl)
    Thanks so much for your reply J-SP. Yes, indeed I'm aware of the GDL and LPC requirements, but I'm very keen to relocate to London especially since my family is moving here as well. I am also committed to having a legal career in the UK so it seems to make more sense to start here.

    I also considered qualifying in HK first and moving via the QLTS, but since there are a lot of NQs in the London market every year, I imagine it must be very difficult unless I do an internal transfer via the firm in HK. But then, I'm also not sure of the value of a HK qualification in the London market. It seems to me that it's easier for English qualified lawyers to work in other overseas offices since, from what I know, most offices (even in Australia) need lawyers who are qualified in England and Wales.
    As a HK qualified lawyer you are pretty flexible with locations too, although as an English qualified lawyer you are probably more so.

    As long as you are aware of the timelines/qualication route, there's nothing stopping you from trying. As I said, you could disclose it as it might be interesting for U.K. firms to see you have secured a competitive TC in another country. You will just have to clearly outline the reason you wanting to move.

    Will you require a work permit or do you have the right to work in the UK?


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