Law Society starts campaign to scare off wannabe lawyers

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  • This development is deeply worrying. It is bad enough that the law profession is elitist, but by warning students off on the basis of the financial costs of embarking upon such a career will only serve to deter those students from poorer backgrounds. The rich students will not be put off as mummy and daddy are there to feed them cash. The Law Society should perhaps focus on LPC provides who seem all too willing to accept anyone on the course and then lead to a glut of LPC graduates. If some entrance levels were set, this would reduce the amount of students doing the course, but based on merit and not income

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  • Restricting choice is of course simply not cricket. If the campaign mentioned by this article is currently contemplated, and is aimed at putting off the solicitors/barristers of the future, regardless of socio-economic designation, then one simply must ask where the moral code has gone in this country? Has immorality taken hold of our senses? Choice is not something to be sniffed at. Choice must be this nation's backbone.

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  • To the individual who posted above.
    I think you have misunderstood the nature of the campaign.
    The Law Society is pointing out the risk of entering a saturated market. At the end of the day £10,000 for the LPC is a lot of money particularly if you are poor.
    What happens to all those poor people who have paid for the LPC and are now unemployed?
    Is that fair on them? The Law Society is right to highlight the risk of unemployment. The risk is obviously elevated if the individual concerned has limited means.

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  • To the individual who has posted anonymously at 1.52pm yesterday.
    Nonsense.
    Students today take on loans and if truly pressed can achieve local authority assistance. The £10+k price tag, if a student is truly passionate about studying the law, should not be something that dissuades them. Bank managers will structure repayments in such a way that if needs be, and the person is still applying for a traineeship, they will be able to afford these through part time jobs. Bank managers recognise that the trainee lawyers of today are the senior partners or heads of chambers of tomorrow.
    People have one life. If they want to study to be lawyers, who are you or I to stop them? For those that are seriously committed, they will find the funds. In this market a litigious seat in their training contract if they are aiming to be a solicitor, a criminal seat, an immigration seat or even an employment seat, will more or less guarantee them a job.

    My message to those that are hunting is be proactive and call/send letters out and visit courts and network with lawyers at the association meetings that lawyers attend. Try and mingle with the people you want to work with and convince them that you are a good egg. They will recognise that and you might be able to broker a traineeship/articles for yourself.

    I would suggest that all those that are contemplating the law ignore the immoral effort of this "initiative" if it comes into fruition and stand up for their right to their own choice of career.

    I will finally speak about a radio-piece from a senior GP from the BMA on Radio 4 who spoke on the program some months back about the fact that there are over 100 GPs going for every GP post. He said that some decades ago, when it was another time of recession there was a lot of unemployment in the medical profession and GP jobs were scarce, they all did locum roles or whatever they could, waiting for the upturn in the economy and job-increase, which did eventually come. He recommended that current GP-doctors do the same thing, while actively job-hunting, and locum/work part-time, and keep applying. He rose to a senior policy post and said that that happened because of his determination to succeed.

    Jobs will come, and my message to those contemplating the law is to have faith in that. Be entrepreneurial about your efforts to 1) fund your career, and 2) how you get the role you want. Explore every avenue. If you have 200 rejections, keep going, the 250th or the 300th may be the "one".

    Be active.

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  • To the poster above at 9:10am
    You just don't get it do you?
    The legal market is significantly saturated.
    The free market is telling people not to pursue law. The opportunities are not there to justify the investment of time and money.
    One is better off analysing what roles are in demand.
    Only fools follow the herd and this is what you are advocating people should do.
    Instead people should start being realistic about risk taking. I would love to drive a Ferrari F1 car but there is little point in me investing time and money to pursue that as it is clearly far too risky to aim for.

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  • Re: "It started with the Tower of Babel.."
    Have you studied the LPC? If so then you must have missed the large percentage of people sold a pipe dream who lacked the raw minerals to succeed as a lawyer (regardless of their socio-economic background).
    Simply pointing out to people the expensive means to a non-guaranteed end is prudent in my view. I hardly think this qualifies as "immorality". In fact, immorality is an LPC provider casting too wide a net and taking money off any Tom, Dick and Harry, regardless of their ill prospects as a lawyer.
    You strike me as the sort of chap who would have lapped up the American Dream during the early 20th century.

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  • Hello again Anonymous (7-Oct-2009 6:38 pm; 7-Oct-2009 10:36 pm).
    Ferrari or not, dreams are what spurs mankind on. Dreams can be humble or they can be stupendous, but they should not be curtailed simply because some third party deigns to decree that simply put "all dreams are off".
    Go into a school/college/university and tell the students that they should give up their dream of becoming the next Cherie Booth, Lord Denning or Nigel Boardman.
    Every student should simply listen to their own advice and aim for what they want. Be that writer, tennis star, doctor, lawyer, or even X-factor finalist.
    Better to have lived, than to always wonder in one's life, evermore, "..what if...".

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  • To the poster above.

    But you have misunderstood the Law Society's campaign.

    The Law Society is not curtailing any person's "dreams."

    It is simply saying to people that deciding to train as a solicitor is very risky. That is clearly the responsible thing to do!!

    If an individual decides to take the risk then good luck to him/her. The problem is the many that fail often end up complaining to the Law Society how unfair life is!!

    The Law Society along with the College of Law is then accused of misleading people.

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  • I cannot belive the arrogance and ignorance of the poster who said that their classes were slowed down for the students from polytechnics. Excuse me, but I have a first degree in criminology, the GDL with commendation and a Masters in Legal Studies (all from Polytechnics.) I achieved first class marks in all of my GDL assessments. I possess common sense, I'm not a selfish person, I show understanding to basic issues, can articulate any argument well. What can you do? Come on here and be so ignorant as to criticise anybody who has been to an ex poly (do you know the 1992 legilsation converting Polies into Unis - probably not). You don't deserve a job as a lawyer; a lawyer needs to have a balanced mind and see the bigger picture, researching and analysing data to create an argument. That takes more than a pseudo snob who is just a wet behind the ears kid with attitude but hasn't got the rudimentary social skills to do anything. Thank God, I'm touching 40 and have plenty of work experience behind me to now PUSH my way through to becoming a barrister.

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  • Dear Anonymous | 12-Oct-2009 9:15 pm
    If someone complains about taking a course in life they chose to take then life itself may be providing them with a lesson from which they are learning.
    The important factor is that they chose their course. No one should dictate/warn or "educate" about risks of any endeavour excessively. A campaign to educate about debt/inability to get a job should properly be deemed to be an unduly excessive campaign.
    Every student entering on to a course with a career in mind, particularly those who want to be a solicitor or barrister, will grasp the basic ramifications of their decision. The figures for fees etc. are clear. If they are of limited means, the figures will be painfully clear. The fact is that it is still their choice and neither you nor I should stop them from making it.
    Human beings constantly decide upon courses of action and to set out upon a career path is something every person must be allowed to be able to do. To say otherwise might be deemed a tad dictatorial.
    Risk is attached to any profession today. Working for Brawn, the Government, a corner shop or a law firm, all have different types of risk attached to them.
    To campaign to allow students to understand the risks of an endeavour before they set out on it smacks of telling someone about the risks in joining the fire brigade for example. You might be killed in a blaze, or you might serve the British public in a valued and respected profession. The risks are potentially more serious than debt, but nonetheless one does not see campaigns from the London Fire Brigade warning that if a student joins a fire-fighting training academy, they could die within a few years once they are on active duty. The student knows, but most importantly, the student decides on the course and chooses it.
    Choice is vital. Debt is attached to all courses to train for all professions. To become a professional lawyer is something to be praised as an ambition in a child. They should be nurtured, encouraged, and given guidance as to how to become the next highly effective cog in the machinery of our legal system.
    If you are student and you want to learn the art of how to be a lawyer, do it. Ignore stick in the muds who say there will be obstacles. Passion, but most importantly hard work and perseverance, will bring exam results, then ensued career success. Be unswerving in your dedication to your chosen career, and later on, the people that you meet at networking events, during deals, in court, or in life generally, will recognise that, and will instruct you.

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