Top tips for getting a Training Contract!
Written By - Hassan Ditta - September 11,2019
1. Try Some Paralegal Work
Paralegals undertake a variety of administrative and legal work. They are responsible for providing support to solicitors, barristers and/or legal executives in:
§ Legal research§ Negotiations§ Project management§ Drafting basic legal documents§ Administrative support§ Client care and client progression
Typically, paralegals are employed in law firms to work in a specialised department, such as the property, corporate finance or dispute resolution departments.
The benefits of undertaking paralegal work are numerous:
§ I It will help to build your confidence and legal skills.
§ I It could lead to a training contract at the firm you work at if you successfully impress key members
§ I It could help to build your network which could lead to future training opportunities
2. Do a Legal Internship
You may want to consider applying for legal internships or summer vacation schemes to help improve your chances of getting a law training contract.
Legal Interns usually spend time in an in-house legal department within a large company or organisation. Day to day, they are involved in a variety of tasks, including:
§ Proofreading documents
§ Attending meetings
§ Document management
§ Drafting letters, emails, contracts and other legal documents
3. Get involved in Some Pro Bono Work
Pro-bono is unpaid work undertaken by law students and practising lawyers. It aims to provide advice to members of the community who do not have the financial means to pay for legal advice.
Although pro-bono work is unpaid, the satisfaction and experience you can gain from doing it is priceless.
This type of work also helps to build and develop your legal and communication skills because you will have to work with a large variety of people on many different legal matters. This makes you an impressive candidate when applying for a training contract.
You can get involved in pro bono work with a number of different organisations including:
§ Citizen’s Advice Bureau
§ Local Law Centres
§ Innocence Project
§ Miscarriage of Justice Project
4. Get Some Commercial Work Experience
You may want to consider applying for jobs at organisations that run businesses involved with the type of law you are interested in.
For example, if you are interested in banking and finance law, apply for a job in a bank where you can develop your commercial awareness a different angle.
5. Research Your Preferred Law Firms
By carrying out thorough research, you can tailor your training contract applications and stand out from the crowd.
Law firms can spot a generic application from a mile away and will prioritise candidates who have put obvious effort into them.
§ The firms’ client bases§ Any recent high-profile deals or cases§ Any influential partners§ Any other facts of interest
Research the following:
6. Keep Your Search Criteria Broad
If you’re having trouble securing yourself a legal training contract, you should consider widening your search to law firms in other parts of the country.
You could also consider those that specialise in different areas of the law.