Quitting my Law Training Contract during my First Seat - Help!

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Lostitfun
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#41
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#41
Seriously I am in exactly the same position. I was so happy I got a TC and have now got just over 5 months remaining but already feel like killing myself. Each day I dread going into work. My training is non existent, I’m more a dogs body than a professional. Lost all my confidence as my boss loves telling me how **** I am but they are more than happy to call on me whenever others have left the office. I have been advised the same “stick at it” but then get advice from recruiters saying my TC is not worth anything. How is that for justice???
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Lostitfun
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#42
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Hey, am I glad I found this thread. I totally understand your situation and I have 5 months remaining of my TC. I should have left within the first month as my workplace is toxic. Constantly told how **** I am but am called upon when others leave the office or to avert disasters. The amount of times I have heard “he can’t treat you like that, speak to him, it’s all in your head, report them” - I am actually petrified of my boss to the extent I have lost all confidence. Cannot report him as risk losing the contract. I am being advised to stick at it but recruiters are saying the opposite as they say my training is non existent. I am hoping to stick it out for the next few months but to be honest each day I am coming home late, broken and feel useless to change anything. My training consists of here is the agreement and draft it, get it wrong and I’ll tell you how crap you are but get it right I’ll tell you still how **** you are. No feedback. Dogs body who cleans, stays late, can’t ask for lunch breaks and gets paid less than other colleagues. Other trainees don’t have to do more than one role, whereas I am doing 3 roles. How’s that for justice. Just don’t know who to turn to for advice. Seriously your health is worth more than any job. Good luck!
Last edited by Lostitfun; 2 years ago
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Lostitfun
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#43
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#43
Thank you - just telling someone helps really. The amount of times I have reached out to others I am always told it is in my head. Other colleagues stay quiet because they are scared to say anything. I’ll try it. Any responses to my thread regarding meaningless TC - what to do is greatly appreciated. Seriously don’t know whether it is worth the last 5 months.
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Lostitfun
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#44
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#44
Thanks for this. I’ll start working on selling the experiences I have had. Fingers crossed this works.

Tbh no one in the firm has spoke out. It is a small firm with a high turnover of staff. The minute someone says something the bosses don’t like they get shown the door (happened a few times). It’s best to avoid any form of interaction with the bosses if you want the day to go well. Everything gets turned round to being your fault.

Thank you for your concern but I am ok. Just a low moment with boss constantly saying things that are uncalled for. Took up some of your suggestions and they have been fab! Counting down the days of finishing this TC.
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Lostitfun
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#45
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GP appointment booked! So weird it hits home when you see it in writing.

Yes, I see what you mean about speaking out by leaving. The only thing is the boss sacked them for asking the basic employment rights. This happened to colleagues/friends who did not see it coming, hence why the others don’t feel like they can say anything as they will be on his radar, and can’t risk losing a job. I have spoken to the others when things get tough and they have been getting me through it. They have said several times they wish they could help but can’t.
(Original post by J-SP)
People are “speaking out” by leaving. Just because they are not talking to you about it, does not mean they aren’t speaking about it. These things tend to be kept fairly under the radar no matter what size of firm you are in.

You can’t flippantly say you want to kill yourself and then suggest you are ok. You aren’t if that’s how you feel.
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Solicon
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#46
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#46
Phone the SRA. They have a helpline for trainees and I called and apparently this is so so common. Many of us end up depressed through traineeships (me included). I would also consider reporting your boss to the SRA. I came close but luckily moved seat.
(Original post by Lostitfun)
GP appointment booked! So weird it hits home when you see it in writing.

Yes, I see what you mean about speaking out by leaving. The only thing is the boss sacked them for asking the basic employment rights. This happened to colleagues/friends who did not see it coming, hence why the others don’t feel like they can say anything as they will be on his radar, and can’t risk losing a job. I have spoken to the others when things get tough and they have been getting me through it. They have said several times they wish they could help but can’t.
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Lostitfun
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#47
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Just what I will be doing but have been advised to not to let anything affect my TC. Waiting to complete to qualify then reporting the firm. Just hope after several requests to send me on the PSC he actually does (from research I have found I can pay for it if he continues to stall and extend my TC). I’m am just tired of asking for things he should be providing and the fallout that occurs every time, which happens in front of other colleagues. Never discreet.
(Original post by J-SP)
So they aren’t leaving then? They are being unlawfully sacked... someone should report this firm to the SRA and Law Society if that is the case (if they haven’t done so already).
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Lostitfun
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#48
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Thanks Solicon. Going to call them tmrw.
(Original post by Solicon)
Phone the SRA. They have a helpline for trainees and I called and apparently this is so so common. Many of us end up depressed through traineeships (me included). I would also consider reporting your boss to the SRA. I came close but luckily moved seat.
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Lostitfun
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#49
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This sounds reassuring. I’ll call them tomorrow.

With regard to the PSC he had to sign a form, which has been sitting on his desk for the last 6 months - I have sent my final chaser today and will not be surprised if he stalls again. I’m calling BPP tmrw too to see if I can book it myself and take holidays from work to attend. Hoping he signs off the holidays without having a barmy about it all.
(Original post by J-SP)
There’s no harm in reporting them now or it at least starting the process. It will take months to be looked into anyway, and for all you know the SRA/Law Soc could be sitting on similar complaints waiting for their to be more than one instance.

It’s practically impossible to be got rid of during a TC unless you do something fundamentally questionable. Typically a termination of a TC requires mutual consent from both parties.

A lot of firms make people pay for the PSC. If you have 4-5 months left, I’d ensure you are booked on a course now if their policy is to pay for it.
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Reality Check
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Having read all four pages of these sagas, I wonder why anyone would choose a career in law. There seems to be no-one who likes it, either at university, the training stage or post qualification. I can't think of another career where its practitioners so universally and consistently dislike their own job. Lostitfun - take care of your health and your wellbeing.
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Lostitfun
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#51
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Thanks for this.
(Original post by J-SP)
Ask someone to explain the complaint process to you before giving any specific/personal details. This will explain timelines, information you will need to present etc. It will give you an understanding of the process so you can then work out how best (or even when) to proceed.
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Lostitfun
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#52
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Thank you. Hopefully starting a process to get me out of this rut. Dreading going into work tmrw, but it has to be done.
(Original post by Reality Check)
Having read all four pages of these sagas, I wonder why anyone would choose a career in law. There seems to be no-one who likes it, either at university, the training stage or post qualification. I can't think of another career where its practitioners so universally and consistently dislike their own job. Lostitfun - take care of your health and your wellbeing.
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Lostitfun
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Update - TC can get worse after all! Never in a million years did I think I would be in this position. Credit to all the NQ who completed the TC.
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The West Wing
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#54
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(Original post by Lostitfun)
Update - TC can get worse after all! Never in a million years did I think I would be in this position. Credit to all the NQ who completed the TC.
It gets better as an NQ.
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Lostitfun
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Just need to reach that finishing line 🤦*♀️
(Original post by The West Wing)
It gets better as an NQ.
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TheBecksta
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#56
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Hi! As a NQ Solicitor, I know how you feel! I undertook work experience with my current firm for two years (completely unpaid) before starting my TC. Once I had started, the fact they were now paying me seemed to change their attitude towards me and I was essentially being treated like a slave. I wouldn't say I wanted to leave immediately as I was determined to become a Solicitor but I definitely was not happy. 13 months in, they informed me that they had forgotten to send my contract off to the SRA and I would have to stay on for another 7 months (on top of the 11 months I had left) to complete my TC. I was devastated. Anyway, fast forward a hard 15 months.... I am still there, they are not keeping me on and I have just been accepted onto the Graduate Management programme in the NHS. They told me that they've had a Solicitor join them every year since they started! If you can stick it out, it is definitely worth it for the skills you will obtain through bad management and lack of support, you will have grown as an individual.
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Solicon
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#57
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I've since left my big corporate firm to pursue a new career. I don't regret leaving as it has been a tiring 10 months, but I am grateful for the lessons learned.
(Original post by TheBecksta)
Hi! As a NQ Solicitor, I know how you feel! I undertook work experience with my current firm for two years (completely unpaid) before starting my TC. Once I had started, the fact they were now paying me seemed to change their attitude towards me and I was essentially being treated like a slave. I wouldn't say I wanted to leave immediately as I was determined to become a Solicitor but I definitely was not happy. 13 months in, they informed me that they had forgotten to send my contract off to the SRA and I would have to stay on for another 7 months (on top of the 11 months I had left) to complete my TC. I was devastated. Anyway, fast forward a hard 15 months.... I am still there, they are not keeping me on and I have just been accepted onto the Graduate Management programme in the NHS. They told me that they've had a Solicitor join them every year since they started! If you can stick it out, it is definitely worth it for the skills you will obtain through bad management and lack of support, you will have grown as an individual.
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Avril_92
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(Original post by Solicon)
Hi everyone,

never thought I would be writing this but here it goes.

My law journey started at university where I got a 1st class in my LLB. I applied for vacation schemes (did ones at Pinsents, Addleshaws, and Slaughters). After this I then did the LPC where I got distinction and went on to secure a training contract at a regional office of a City firm.

When I got offered my TC I had several friends working in London at City firms telling me to NOT do it. I didn't listen and thought I had struck gold at securing a top firm but in the regions where I thought the culture would be friendlier. I was subjected to the usual "we are an open and approachable firm etc etc".

I have been at my firm for 8 weeks now and I absolutely hate every day. My seat is commercial real estate which is not the most interesting but the thing I hate the most is the people. Everyone is extremely unfriendly, nasty, stressed, and they enjoy treating their trainees like crap and using them as a source to vent their anger.

Should I quit? I really want to and cannot imagine staying at this firm for 2 years. It has totally turned me off a career in law (to be honest the job is boring and I don't want to do any of the work I see the senior associates slaving over). The culture is brutal and I am feeling severely depressed going to work every day. At first I was eager to learn but that was quickly whipped out of me.

I plan to quit at the end of December (after 4 months) if I find another job (I have rights to work abroad so would apply to jobs in my home country).

Anyone been through something similar/got any advice? Desperate here

Thanks.
If you've had that experience then I'd probably be thinking yes. Having said that, a lot of people really dislike the firm they train with, switch on qualification and enjoy it much more. You'll have more choice at this stage (or can consider in-house).
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TheBecksta
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#59
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That's good to hear, I hope it is going well/goes well! People keep asking me if I regret my qualifications and staying on to qualify as a Solicitor and although I have wanted to leave so many times (including this morning) I know it has got me where I am today in terms of skills and experience and that is everything I wanted from a TC.
(Original post by Solicon)
I've since left my big corporate firm to pursue a new career. I don't regret leaving as it has been a tiring 10 months, but I am grateful for the lessons learned.
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Lostitfun
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Congratulations! Just what I needed to hear. Hope I can stick it out like you did. Good luck @TheBecksta.
(Original post by TheBecksta)
Hi! As a NQ Solicitor, I know how you feel! I undertook work experience with my current firm for two years (completely unpaid) before starting my TC. Once I had started, the fact they were now paying me seemed to change their attitude towards me and I was essentially being treated like a slave. I wouldn't say I wanted to leave immediately as I was determined to become a Solicitor but I definitely was not happy. 13 months in, they informed me that they had forgotten to send my contract off to the SRA and I would have to stay on for another 7 months (on top of the 11 months I had left) to complete my TC. I was devastated. Anyway, fast forward a hard 15 months.... I am still there, they are not keeping me on and I have just been accepted onto the Graduate Management programme in the NHS. They told me that they've had a Solicitor join them every year since they started! If you can stick it out, it is definitely worth it for the skills you will obtain through bad management and lack of support, you will have grown as an individual.
TheBeckstaCongratulations! Hoping I can stick it out like you did. Excellent example of 1 door closing and another opens. Good luck @TheBecksta
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