How To…..Become A Solicitor In Scotland.
Many people from different backgrounds read my blog and follow me on twitter. Time and Time again I am asked questions such as ‘How do you become a solicitor’ so I decided to compile a quick guide for you .
1.LL.B or LL.B with Honours –First off you will need a Bachelor of Law (or if you intend to practice at the Bar as an Advocate) you will need to do Honours too. The LL.B can be studied either full-time over 3 years or 2 years on the fast track ( note on the fast track you only do the compulsory subjects required by The Law Society and everyone does this in years 1and 2 ) The fast track does not have all the third year subjects. Many people also chose to study the 3 year LL.B part time too .It takes longer but many people find that it allows them to work and fund the degree.
2.Diploma In Legal Practice – New PEAT 1 – after 4 years of study you are required to undertake a further post-graduate year of study. This aims to give you professional skills that you can use in practice. This year the new PEAT 1 system replaces the Diploma in legal practice.
3.The Traineeship – PEAT2 Ok so you have done your degree and completed your diploma now its time to start professional traineeship with a firm of solicitors. In your first year as a trainee you will not have a practising certificate yet as you can only apply for it after the first year and If you work in a criminal firm the end of the first year will be when you get your gown and start to appear in the lower courts.
4.NQ – At the end of the 2 years and having successfully completed your training with your firm you will be admitted as a solicitor and begin to practice as a NQ(newly qualified) solicitor.
If you chose to study for 4 years LL.B (Hons) it can feel like a long time and adding on the Diploma and traineeship can take a total of 7 years but in my opinion it gives you a broader knowledge of different areas of law and this can ultimately help you when you practice.
There may be alternative routes to practice
THINKING ABOUT IT?
If you don’t have the qualifications to get into University to study for the LL.B YET then many Universities In Scotland offer an Access to University course which can get you the entry requirements. These are usually part-time and I studied the Access course at University of Glasgow. Here is a link http://www.gla.ac.uk/departments/adulteducation/
At present I have been awarded LL.B (Hons) from University Of Glasgow 2009 and Completed the DipLP (exams pending) and I am about to commence my training with Graham Walker Criminal Defence Lawyers in Glasgow.
If you are considering embarking on a career in Law or even JUST THINKING ABOUT it please feel free to get in touch.
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