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Getting started



Whilst the legal sector is focussed on 3 main types of lawyers: Barrister, Solicitor, and Chartered Legal Executive (CILEx Lawyer), the sector also includes roles beyond these career paths.



Professional Qualifications

If you are interested in becoming a solicitor after completing your degree, you will need to take either the Legal Practice Course (LPC) or the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE). The LPC will be phased out over the next ten years or so as the SQE becomes the only route to qualification. However, with such a lengthy transitional period, current final year law students and law graduates have the option of taking either the LPC or the SQE at the moment.



The LPC is a well-established course, containing additional content beyond the SQE syllabus, much prized by law firms. The LPC will still be a valid qualification for several years, and whilst law firms and other legal employers continue to offer training contracts (the next stage required after completing an LPC), it remains a recognised way of entering the legal profession.

Find out more about the LPC



The SQE is a new, independent centralised assessment for all would-be solicitors who wish to qualify in England and Wales, which will eventually replace the LPC. As part of the SQE, you will also need to complete two years of qualifying legal work experience and undertake the SQE assessments. Preparation courses for the SQE are available from a wide range of providers

Find out about the SQE



You can become a CILEx Lawyer, or Chartered Legal Executive, through the CILEx Professional Qualification (CPQ) route. Combining work with study you'll progress across three stages and the stage you join will depend on the qualifications you hold:

  • Foundation - aligned to the role of a paralegal
  • Advanced - for those handling cases at an advanced paralegal level
  • Professional - for those who want to be CILEX Lawyers in their chosen specialist area of law and with full practice rights.

Find out more about the CPQ


Keep up-to-date

New Law Journal

Discover the latest law and legal magazine articles and view regular newsletter, reports and publications.
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The Lawyer

News, features and analysis to help keep up to date with all the latest developments in the legal sector.
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Law Careers Handbook

Essential resource for those wishing to become a barrister or solicitor providing advice and views from key recruiters in the sector.
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Useful student section covering CLC lawyer roles and information on how to qualify, plus up-to-date sector trends.
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His Majesty's Government Courts and Tribunals Servicer

Latest information on developments in the sector.
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Provides information and advice for Law students and graduates, and an ultimate guide to getting started in the legal profession.
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