What's the best way to set up law as a backup career? Watch

Somethingtodo
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#1
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Long story short, I'm 25, and I quit my paralegal job to give my dream of writing fiction for a living a proper go.

I'm going to remain realistic though, as it's pretty unlikely anything will come of it. I've done the GDL, and preparing to do the LPC or BPTC sometime in the next year.

What I want to know is what could I do to put myself in a good position in future, if I have to come out of this hiatus and go back to law.

E.g Is it better to do the LPC or the BPTC? Is it impossible to get tutelage if there's a year or so between the BPTC and applying? Etc.

Thanks!
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999tigger
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(Original post by Somethingtodo)
Long story short, I'm 25, and I quit my paralegal job to give my dream of writing fiction for a living a proper go.

I'm going to remain realistic though, as it's pretty unlikely anything will come of it. I've done the GDL, and preparing to do the LPC or BPTC sometime in the next year.

What I want to know is what could I do to put myself in a good position in future, if I have to come out of this hiatus and go back to law.

E.g Is it better to do the LPC or the BPTC? Is it impossible to get tutelage if there's a year or so between the BPTC and applying? Etc.

Thanks!
You might wish to include more detail as to what you studies, where and what grades for your degree and GDL.
You might also wish to put down what experience you have and what your ambitions are?
That way people can assess where you are.

I would have thought with writing being so precarious, then its better to do that in your spare time.
Are you applying for pupillage or TC now?
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lawyerwanabe
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I think you have to make a decision which to focus on - both career paths demand full commitment.

Think about timelines for your goals i.e. if you pause a legal career for the time being, when will you start working towards this again? Depending on the type of law you want to practise, it’s worth noting you need to build up your CV with skills and experience (e.g. legal work experience/industry experience) which takes time. Although you have paralegal experience which is helpful. But be mindful law firms/chambers will likely expect you to explain your reason for leaving law and then returning.

Also remember that the SQE is being introduced in 2020/2021. Depending on how long you spend pursuing your writing career, your LPC qualification may become redundant. So, maybe factor in that you will likely need to complete the SQE after your hiatus (in which case I wouldn’t recommend doing the LPC).
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Somethingtodo
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(Original post by 999tigger)
You might wish to include more detail as to what you studies, where and what grades for your degree and GDL.
You might also wish to put down what experience you have and what your ambitions are?
That way people can assess where you are.

I would have thought with writing being so precarious, then its better to do that in your spare time.
Are you applying for pupillage or TC now?
Hi, thanks for the response. To answer your questions, I got lower seconds in Political science & German, and the same for my GDL. I have a good CV though as I worked at a magic circle firm for six months doing doc review. I also have so very good personal references.

I honestly don't know what my ambitions are. If writing fiction fails then I'll try to get involved in an area of law that's at least interesting, that matters more to me than a huge salary.

I've tried writing fiction in my free time but it's just exhausting. I'm so worn out at the end of the day that I have no creative energy left. So I'm aiming to take about six months off.

I'm not applying to either as I don't have an LPC yet. Due to some family issues I deferred the LPC on the day of registration so I'm locked into the course. Latest I can start it is sept 2019, so I'm going to give writing a go until then.
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999tigger
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(Original post by lawyerwanabe)
I think you have to make a decision which to focus on - both career paths demand full commitment.

Think about timelines for your goals i.e. if you pause a legal career for the time being, when will you start working towards this again? Depending on the type of law you want to practise, it’s worth noting you need to build up your CV with skills and experience (e.g. legal work experience/industry experience) which takes time. Although you have paralegal experience which is helpful. But be mindful law firms/chambers will likely expect you to explain your reason for leaving law and then returning.

Also remember that the SQE is being introduced in 2020/2021. Depending on how long you spend pursuing your writing career, your LPC qualification may become redundant. So, maybe factor in that you will likely need to complete the SQE after your hiatus (in which case I wouldn’t recommend doing the LPC).
What do you mean the LPC will become redundant?
It wont be recognised?
What information do you have on this?
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999tigger
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(Original post by Somethingtodo)
Hi, thanks for the response. To answer your questions, I got lower seconds in Political science & German, and the same for my GDL. I have a good CV though as I worked at a magic circle firm for six months doing doc review. I also have so very good personal references.

I honestly don't know what my ambitions are. If writing fiction fails then I'll try to get involved in an area of law that's at least interesting, that matters more to me than a huge salary.

I've tried writing fiction in my free time but it's just exhausting. I'm so worn out at the end of the day that I have no creative energy left. So I'm aiming to take about six months off.

I'm not applying to either as I don't have an LPC yet. Due to some family issues I deferred the LPC on the day of registration so I'm locked into the course. Latest I can start it is sept 2019, so I'm going to give writing a go until then.
JSP is your best bet as they know the market and are in recruitment.
I would just be concerned about how competitive your application might be. If you have contacts be sure to keep them current.
Lets hope the writing career works out an then you dont have to worry about other things.
No prospect or interest in doing any journalism?
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lawyerwanabe
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A 2.2 in your undergraduate degree is going to limit your TC/pupilage opportunities, and having below a commendation in GDL won’t help this. You’re going to need a really stellar CV to overcome this barrier - by solid work experience and other personal attributes. Do you have mitigating circumstances as to why you didn’t get a 2.1 or above?

I think you need to spend all the time you have gaining solid legal experience. I would recommend going back to paralegalling as this will give you the most relevant experience. Perhaps study the LPC part-time so that you can work as a paralegal while doing this.

You could in theory take the time between now and Sept 2019 to focus on your writing, but this is just delaying the inevitable of returning to being focussed on law. It does sound like your CV needs a lot of work to gain legal experience - gaining this experience can feel like a full time commitment and this is why I personally would choose either law or writing ambitions. If you decide on balancing both then you will be limiting the legal opportunities available. You need to be extremely disciplined with your time if you choose both.

To be very brutal, whilst 6 months at a MC firm is helpful, it’s not enough. I think you need to be in a permanent legal role until you receive a TC/pupilage offer, given you have a 2.2 at undergraduate.

Choosing the LPC or BPTC won’t necessarily change what work you need to do. Although if you choose the barrister BPTC/barrister route it would make sense to tailor your CV to this.

This is just my own opinion. You need to weigh up your own situation carefully. If you don’t know what your ambition/interests are you also really need to work on this.
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lawyerwanabe
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(Original post by 999tigger)
What do you mean the LPC will become redundant?
It wont be recognised?
What information do you have on this?
I just meant redundant once the SQE comes into existence and the transition period for recognising the LPC lapses. The LPC will still be recognised for x years after the SQE is introduced, and I believe this is only applicable to anyone who has “legally” or “financially” committed to the LLB/GDL & LPC route before the date in which the SQE comes into force.

I just mentioned this as something to bear in mind depending on how long Somethingtodo was planning on taking a break from law
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999tigger
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(Original post by lawyerwanabe)
I just meant redundant once the SQE comes into existence and the transition period for recognising the LPC lapses. The LPC will still be recognised for x years after the SQE is introduced, and I believe this is only applicable to anyone who has “legally” or “financially” committed to the LLB/GDL & LPC route before the date in which the SQE comes into force.

I just mentioned this as something to bear in mind depending on how long Somethingtodo was planning on taking a break from law
Ok seems they are committed. id expect the LPC to be accepted for several years after. Its not meant to expire at all. I imagine the market will take care of it.
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