Returning to law after walking away from a TC

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millwalllion
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Hoping someone out there might be able to give me some advice.

So, I started my TC at a top 30 law firm in London back in Aug 2021. I left after two months after a very negative experience. It got to a point where I felt no other option but to prioritise my wellbeing. The firm was not great in addressing my concerns and the politics of the team I was in was like nothing I had ever experienced before.

After some time out in another industry (insurance), where I really enjoy working with my colleagues and who are really happy with my work and attitude, I have realised that my passion still lies with the law.

I know it will be much harder for me now to get back in. I am currently applying for paralegal roles in corporate/finance. Just wanted to see if anyone had any comments or advice. Perhaps there is someone out there who has been in a similar situation.

Cheers,

H
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sublime-baths
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I think you’d need to convince firms that this was one off and under exceptional circumstances because your motivations will no doubt be challenged. Definitely think about how you’re going to explain dropping the first TC and why you now want another one. I would’ve encouraged you to stay and then move once you qualify but obviously that isn’t an option.

I think your best bet is probably to start as a paralegal and find a firm where you enjoy the culture/people and then work towards getting a TC there.
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millwalllion
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(Original post by sublime-baths)
I think you’d need to convince firms that this was one off and under exceptional circumstances because your motivations will no doubt be challenged. Definitely think about how you’re going to explain dropping the first TC and why you now want another one. I would’ve encouraged you to stay and then move once you qualify but obviously that isn’t an option.

I think your best bet is probably to start as a paralegal and find a firm where you enjoy the culture/people and then work towards getting a TC there.
Thank you for your honesty. I agree with everything you have said. Luckily, another partner I worked closely with in my team and who I got on well with and gave me good feedback, is happy to provide me with a reference to explain why I left.

I think in the moment staying for two years was hard to countenance.

Paralegal is definitely the best route I feel, and to make a name for myself from the inside.
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sublime-baths
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(Original post by millwalllion)
Thank you for your honesty. I agree with everything you have said. Luckily, another partner I worked closely with in my team and who I got on well with and gave me good feedback, is happy to provide me with a reference to explain why I left.

I think in the moment staying for two years was hard to countenance.

Paralegal is definitely the best route I feel, and to make a name for myself from the inside.
Best of luck
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Pythian
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(Original post by millwalllion)
Thank you for your honesty. I agree with everything you have said. Luckily, another partner I worked closely with in my team and who I got on well with and gave me good feedback, is happy to provide me with a reference to explain why I left.

I think in the moment staying for two years was hard to countenance.

Paralegal is definitely the best route I feel, and to make a name for myself from the inside.
Good luck. Hope it works out for you.
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The University of Law Students
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(Original post by millwalllion)
Hoping someone out there might be able to give me some advice.

So, I started my TC at a top 30 law firm in London back in Aug 2021. I left after two months after a very negative experience. It got to a point where I felt no other option but to prioritise my wellbeing. The firm was not great in addressing my concerns and the politics of the team I was in was like nothing I had ever experienced before.

After some time out in another industry (insurance), where I really enjoy working with my colleagues and who are really happy with my work and attitude, I have realised that my passion still lies with the law.

I know it will be much harder for me now to get back in. I am currently applying for paralegal roles in corporate/finance. Just wanted to see if anyone had any comments or advice. Perhaps there is someone out there who has been in a similar situation.

Cheers,

H
Hi Millwallion,

Firstly, it's okay to acknowledge that you didn't fit in with a culture of a particular firm. In fact, any entrepreneur will tell you that the key to success is to cut your losses with a bad idea quickly but every academic will tell you to reflect on that experience and make sure you understand why it wasn't for you and develop your understanding of what it is you are seeking. For example, was there too much commuting that made other committments difficult to balance; was there a culture of indiviualism and you prefer to be part of a team; were the practices too antiquated and you want to work in a more modern and forward looking environment? [Don't answer these questions here, just use them as a starting guide to reflection.] If you know why the previous TC was not a success for you, and you can explain what it is you seek so that you can succeed, people can be very understanding of this. Do not let this out you off re-entering law.

Secondly, applying for paralegal roles is a great way to restart- it shows commitment to the industry and you will be able to build up a favourable reference too. Whilst you are applying for a paid role, you could consider volunteering- again this builds up favourable references, experience and continues to demonstrate a commitment to the legal sector. Alternatively, you could see out more legal based work at your current employer- policy writing, contract assessment, client conferences etc.

Finally, there are many stories on LinkedIn about lawyers who have changed roles or firms/chambers or sectors because it wasn't quite for them. Take confidence from these stories that change does not mean failure; it is simply change.

I wish you all the best in your new adventures.
Nic
Student Ambassador at the University of Law
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