Graduate Fast-track Diploma (Level 6 Diploma in Legal Practice)

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LAwgirl2020
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Hello, I have recently been looking into the Graduate Fast-track Diploma (CILEX). I have a first-class Law degree and have had no luck with training contracts and do not want to be a barrister (I work in Chambers and I'm completely put off by being a barrister so decided not to go down that route). Anyway, the fees for the CILEX route are very reasonable and cost is a huge factor. I am currently weighing up pros and cons and was wondering if anyone had any insight or experience in doing this route and what it has resulted in for them? Thanks so much in advance!
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The University of Law Students
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(Original post by LAwgirl2020)
Hello, I have recently been looking into the Graduate Fast-track Diploma (CILEX). I have a first-class Law degree and have had no luck with training contracts and do not want to be a barrister (I work in Chambers and I'm completely put off by being a barrister so decided not to go down that route). Anyway, the fees for the CILEX route are very reasonable and cost is a huge factor. I am currently weighing up pros and cons and was wondering if anyone had any insight or experience in doing this route and what it has resulted in for them? Thanks so much in advance!
Hi LAwgirl2020

This is a great question!

I completed the Graduate Fast Track (Level 6) Diploma to become an accredited Graduate member of CILEx as an additional qualification alongside my final year of my law degree at University.

While I am pursuing the traditional training contract route, I thoroughly enjoyed gaining the extra qualification and think it’s a great route to qualification. In terms of comparison, the only thing that I would say warrants extra consideration with CILEx is choosing your practice area. It may be more difficult (but by no means impossible) to practice more than one area of law with CILEx as you will focus your portfolio and further studies on one area of practice when looking to obtain the fellowship and chartered status.

In terms of the legal market, the demand for legal executives is just as high as solicitors and the CILEx route to qualification (alongside other alternative routes like Apprenticeships and Paralegal Qualifications), I think, is becoming more and more attractive to aspiring lawyers – particularly given the changes the legal industry is facing with the introduction of the SQE.

You rightly state that the CILEx fees are usually more reasonable than the ‘traditional’ route and it offers the opportunity to learn as you earn as you progress through your career, with many firms supporting the qualification alongside practicing.

My advice would be to look join to your local CILEx Society/Network – I think its of real benefit to gain insight about the routes/opportunities available to you from those who have been through the process.

I hope this helps.

James

ULaw Student Ambassador
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17Student17
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Do look at the SQE1 and 2 exams too (or the LPC as you have read law so still eligible to do it). If you could find a company in house to sponsor you as a trainee whilst you do 2 years of the LPC part time with the UoL or BPP that might ultimately be more lucrative and potentially not cost you anything although finding that may not be easy.
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LAwgirl2020
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(Original post by The University of Law Students)
Hi LAwgirl2020

This is a great question!

I completed the Graduate Fast Track (Level 6) Diploma to become an accredited Graduate member of CILEx as an additional qualification alongside my final year of my law degree at University.

While I am pursuing the traditional training contract route, I thoroughly enjoyed gaining the extra qualification and think it’s a great route to qualification. In terms of comparison, the only thing that I would say warrants extra consideration with CILEx is choosing your practice area. It may be more difficult (but by no means impossible) to practice more than one area of law with CILEx as you will focus your portfolio and further studies on one area of practice when looking to obtain the fellowship and chartered status.

In terms of the legal market, the demand for legal executives is just as high as solicitors and the CILEx route to qualification (alongside other alternative routes like Apprenticeships and Paralegal Qualifications), I think, is becoming more and more attractive to aspiring lawyers – particularly given the changes the legal industry is facing with the introduction of the SQE.

You rightly state that the CILEx fees are usually more reasonable than the ‘traditional’ route and it offers the opportunity to learn as you earn as you progress through your career, with many firms supporting the qualification alongside practicing.

My advice would be to look join to your local CILEx Society/Network – I think its of real benefit to gain insight about the routes/opportunities available to you from those who have been through the process.

I hope this helps.

James

ULaw Student Ambassador
Hi James,

Thanks a lot for your response, that is much appreciated. May I ask why you have decided to pursue the traditional training contract route now after your qualification?

May I also ask, does the area of law you choose to sit your exams in, have to be what your employer is giving you work to do on (for the portfolio)? I was going to choose Family law but my employer doesn't do a lot of this work. Just wondered if you knew the answer to that?

Thanks a lot,
Last edited by LAwgirl2020; 3 weeks ago
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LAwgirl2020
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Thank you, I did look into the SQE 1 and 2 exams but by the time that you pay for both exams and all of the preparation for it, the cost just gets so high. If money was not an obstacle I certainly would look into doing the SQE 1 and 2 but once you factor in all costs it's well over £12,000 easily (depending on providers).

Yes, I agree, finding that may not be easy but possibly worth a try!

Thanks a lot for your time.
(Original post by 17Student17)
Do look at the SQE1 and 2 exams too (or the LPC as you have read law so still eligible to do it). If you could find a company in house to sponsor you as a trainee whilst you do 2 years of the LPC part time with the UoL or BPP that might ultimately be more lucrative and potentially not cost you anything although finding that may not be easy.
ou
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The University of Law Students
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(Original post by LAwgirl2020)
Hi James,

Thanks a lot for your response, that is much appreciated. May I ask why you have decided to pursue the traditional training contract route now after your qualification?

May I also ask, does the area of law you choose to sit your exams in, have to be what your employer is giving you work to do on (for the portfolio)? I was going to choose Family law but my employer doesn't do a lot of this work. Just wondered if you knew the answer to that?

Thanks a lot,
Hi LAwgirl2020

Thanks for your reply.

For me, it was just a case of securing a training contract first. Admittedly I also knew more about the “traditional” route than CILEx, until studying it, at the time and this was definitely a factor in my decision.

With regards to your choice of law, I don’t believe it matters whether your firm practices it or not – although of course gaining practical experience will only benefit your understanding theoretically. This is something I would speak to your firm about and is also worth bringing up at a CILEx committee as I am sure it will be a common query.

Hope this helps!

James

ULaw Student Ambassador
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