The National Accident Helpline’s Future Legal Mind competition has returned for a third year, offering the chance for promising students to win £5,000 and work experience at a law firm.

2016 winner Tom Phillips
2016 winner Tom Phillips

To be in with a chance of the prize, entrants must submit an essay no longer than 1,300 words, with the winner published on Nine runners-up will win £250.

Students will be asked the following question: “If eBay can resolve 60 million disputes each year, why does the UK civil justice system need lawyers?”

The winner of the competition in 2016, Tom Phillips, said: “I have no doubt that winning the competition has provided a significant boost to my CV and will ultimately help me to obtain pupillage. I would encourage all law students to enter the 2017 Future Legal Mind Competition – it is a unique and valuable opportunity.”

Amy Loughery
2015 winner Amy Loughery

2015 winner Amy Loughery, an undergraduate student at the University of York, said that “the awards have really kick-started everything” for her. “I’ve managed to acquire two part-time jobs through winning Future Legal Mind. It’s opened loads of doors for me and I’ve put the £5,000 aside to help fund my post-graduate study. It’s given me security.”

The judging panel will include National Accident Helpline managing director Simon Trott, Lawyer 2B editor Richard Simmons and National Accident Helpline legal director Jonathan White.

Chair of the judges Trott said: “Future Legal Mind is a great opportunity for law students to gain an invaluable boost to their chances of breaking into the legal profession.

It’s been heartening to see the positive impact the last two years’ awards have had on our winners, and we are excited to be offering this chance to a new group of students for Future Legal Mind 2017.”

The competition opens today. The final date on which entries will be accepted is 1 February 2017.

For more details, and to enter, visit the Future Legal Mind website.

Previous winning essays

Is the commoditisation of legal services inevitable?

We have a National Health Service – so why not a National Justice Service?

The days of state-funded legal services are over – so let’s make pro bono tax deductible