Government Legal Service opportunities (GLS) now open

GLS – Government Legal Service – applications now open

 Applications opened today  for 35 trainee solicitor and pupil barrister places and closes on 31 July. The GLS employs 2000 lawyers  (75% Solicitors and 25% barristers) who advise ministers and colleagues on the legality of proposed policy , create new legislation or represent the govt in high profile litigation cases.The role really suits people  with a keen interest in Politics. The work environment is supportive and collaborative. There are no long  hours and  flexible working hours are in place. Those who  draft  legislation as it goes through parliament feel a sense of uniqueness. Tips for applications: show a strong interest in politics, follow stories in the media and think how legal services can tie in, demonstrate why interested in public law + attend GLS open days. Few in the GLS have trained there, but move into the role later. Warning: competition is very severe. e.g. 3000 previously applied for 20 places.  http://www.gls.gov.uk/



“Essential first year advice” by Chris White of Aspiring Solicitors

My name is Chris White and I am a solicitor at a leading global law firm.

When I started university as a law student 10 years ago(!), I didn’t really know what to expect. I was a “first generation undergraduate” in my family and had no “family contacts” in the legal profession, but I knew I wanted to become a solicitor. However, very early on in my first year I made a huge error, one that nearly prevented me from securing my goal of becoming a solicitor at a leading global law firm.

At a Law Society event, I made the error of listening to a third year law student who told me that first year grades at law school “didn’t count”. This person was on the Committee of the Law Society so I automatically added extra weight to his advice. Looking back at this advice, I can honestly say that it was the worst piece of advice I received throughout my entire 4 year degree course.

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Training Contract* Antarctica?

Having been given a task to blog about trends around vacancies, I spent a good few hours (though admittedly no sleepless nights) trying to figure out which industry or sector my first post might be about. And then one morning, after the first sift through the emails but probably before the first coffee, I came across an article on the “The Lawyer” which reported a plunge in the number of training contract vacancies. Ouch. Gloomy news on an already gloomy day.

Being a law grad, a happy ex-vac schemer and a less happy ex-training contract seeker, this topic is close to my heart so I immersed myself in the article temporarily forgetting about those law fair invites that had to be sent.

If you love stats as much as I do, you’ll be interested to know that…

“In 2011/12 4,869 training contracts were registered by the Law Society compared with 5,441 in 2010/11 and 6,303 in 2006/07. The current figure is 16 per cent lower than pre-2008 numbers”.

These figures were reported towards the end of May in the Law Society’s Annual Statistics Report and show that the number of training contracts in 2011-2012 has decreased by 10.5 per cent as compared to the number in 2010-2011. Meanwhile, the numbers of applicants are going up.

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