Legal executives: an easier route into a career in law?

  • Print
  • Comments (24)

Readers' comments (24)

  • Yes, but won't recruiters discriminate against people with ILEX qualifications as opposed to candidates who have done the traditional LPC-training contract route? People I've asked have said ILEX is regarded as 2nd-rate.
    Then again if there is a qualified solicitor who costs £70K a year to employ and an ILEX qualified who costs £45K a year to employ and both can do the job at an equal level, then I'd employ the more cost effective candidate - the ILEX qualified.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • People should be careful going into ILEX after doing the LPC thinking it will exempt them from a training contract.

    I tried this around five years ago. The rules stated then that it had to be 1) ILEX fellowhsip and THEN 2) LPC.

    I had done my LPC, qualified as a Licensed Conveyancer and then joined ILEX - I got my five year's service with ILEX and asked the Law Society to exempt me from the training contract. They refused and would not allow me to qualify via that route - they even suggested I redo my LPC! Apparently although the LPC may not officially have an expiry date, mine did.

    So be very careful!

    Thankfully I qualified shortly after by way of a training contract. Although some days I do wonder if that was a good idea...

    Regards

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Why do we allow further accessibility to a legal market that is already saturated with lawyers.
    ILEX qualifications should be treated as second class because they are. The academic entry levels for the ILEX are a joke:
    "Although there are no specific entry requirements, ILEX recommends that you should hold a minimum of four GCSEs at grades C or above, including English language or literature or O level or other qualifications at an equivalent level".
    Law is a difficult subject and requires strong academics. You can do the LPC part time and spread the cost. While many legal execs are inteligent people, they do not have the necessary qualifications to be treated as a solicitor to do so would be to dilute the credibility of the profession. I wouldn't want a doctor who gained his qualifications in this was to advise me!
    I do, however think that the legal education needs to be overhauled so there is one consistant basis for a career in law.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I am a Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives and I have worked with many lawyers in City firms over a period of 20 plus years and have trained quite few in the process. I can assure you that ILEX exams are far from a push over. Those students who have worked and studied hard enough to qualify as Legal Executives have taken examinations at a level that exempts them from the equivalent GDL heads in their area of law and stand them in as good stead as anyone who has studied a non law degree. Should they wish to qualify as a solicitor, a route which is open to them, and one which I took, ILEX exams can exempt them from the remaining GDL heads and they can take the LPC, no need for a training contract provided they are a Fellow at the relevant time. I became a solicitor as at the time, there were career progression and salary issues. I now earn well in excess of six figures and am forever grateful to the Institute for giving me the opportunity and have encouraged those who sought my advice to follow that course. In my experience, lawyers and clients are not quite as ignorant as the previous poster.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • 16 June 11.00am comment. How dare you! I am a trainee legal executive hoping to start the LPC in September 2010 (after qualifying as a Fellow). I have worked over 8 years studying for various things and have been working in law for 11 years. The reason I couldn't drop sticks and do a law degree was that I had a full time job and a mortgage at the age of 20. Giving up my house to study full time (who would pay my mortgage and living costs?) was not an option and therefore my only route was through ILEX. To class me as a "second-class lawyer" is very offensive to me personally and I am sure to others.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • The ILEX is second class to a law degree, LPC and training contract route and anyone who thinks any diferent is clearly mad! These legal exectuive roles are watering down the profession and making it harder for LPC graduates to find the training contracts they require.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • The 'defence' of the ILEX route to the '2nd class lawyer tag' is that they are 'specialised'.
    That is a convenient euphemism used by the ILEX candidate who could not hack the breadth of the law degree and necessary breadth of subsequent early legal career . Lawyers who 'over specialise' or specialise too early are not flexible enough for a real career - especially in this 'no job for life labour market' and LE's are covering up this basic long lasting defect with a 'defensive attitude' and a resort to 'special pleading' - " out of touch with the realities of the real world' that seeks to mask their diluted lower academic and uncompetitive qualifications.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • 16 June 11.00 am you need to learn to spell. I think the word you were looking for to describe legal executives was "intelligent" not "inteligent". I don't also understand your comment with regards to doctors as it doesn't seem to make sense.
    You should try studying through the ILEX it may help you.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • The ILEX should be scrapped. It is undermining the legal profession. The amount of times I have dealt with these 'executives' and have had to do most of their work and explain things to do them when they're on the other side is a disgrace!
    I am worried for the prospective trainees who are struggling to fund their LPCs and then find a TC and who would be a genuine benefit to this country's legal system. The Law Society have really let them down by encouraging these quick ill-conceived "qualifications"

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • As somebody who has completed a traditional LL.B(Hons) degree in law, the Legal Practice Course (PGDL), and worked in the legal departments of a number of global, blue-chip companies, I have come across a significant number of "qualified" and "unqualified" lawyers. During this time it has become clear that the standard of the lawyer tends to differ considerably, and that there is no real consistency of ability. I have negotiated contractual disputes with a partner of a UK top tier law firm, who didn't appear to have a grasp of basic contractual principals, and have dealt with numerous "Associates" who equally didn't appear to have knowledge of the subject matter of their professed specialism.

    Some people appear to think that legal executives or paralegals are devaluing the legal profession, despite the fact that, on leaving education (usually a law degree and often the LPC - as opposed to a non-law degree and a one year conversion) and moving into the work environment, they receive the same level of training and supervision as trainee and associate solicitors (it just doesn't recieve the Law Society's stamp of approval).

    It strikes me that some solicitors (maybe the less able, or those that have become complacent) are more concerned with the possibility that they may, despite their delusion of superiority, end up looking a little foolish in front of their clients.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

View results 10 per page | 20 per page | 50 per page

Have your say

Mandatory Required Fields

Mandatory

Comments that are in breach or potential breach of our terms and conditions in particular clause 8, may not be published or, if published, may subsequently be taken down. In addition we may remove any comment where a complaint is made in respect of it. These actions are at our sole discretion.

  • Print
  • Comments (24)