Can I continue my current career if I accept an offer for Training Contract commencing in 2022/23?

Discussion in 'Vacation Schemes and Training Contracts 2020+' started by Hollie, Sep 11, 2020.

  1. Hollie

    Hollie New Member

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    Hi there

    I am what’s considered as a ‘career changer’- currently working in Canary Wharf in financial services (M&A, partnership management) and looking to retrain as a solicitor.

    I am looking to undertake the academic study that’s required for conversion- either the GDL and the LPC or the new SQE route. However because the major city law firms are already recruiting for TC starting in 2023, I want to secure one now, so I don’t have to wait to start one after I have finished studying.

    I was planning on continuing my current career while studying (as difficult as that may be, I want to do it for financial and experience reasons at least during the GDL). Would accepting a TC now, for the 2022 or 2023 intake mean I’d have to given up my current career immediately? Or can I still continue, and then terminate my employment when I’m actually due to begin my two years training?

    thanks for any guidance, would really appreciate it!
     
  2. Camilla

    Camilla Legendary Member
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    Hi Hollie

    The GDL and the LPC are both year long courses, unless you do the accelerated LPC which is about 6 months long I believe.

    I haven't studied either, but I think it would be difficult to work full time until your TC starts as the courses are pretty full on from my understanding. Also, I expect you would have to attend classes between 9-5, although this might depend on your provider and timetable.

    If you are funding the GDL/LPC yourself, you might be able to study online as you would then have the flexibility to study around your full-time job. However, even if you could logistically fit your classes around your 9-5 job, I still think it would be tough to manage both. The full-time LPC requires about 45 hours studying per week. I think most people would struggle with that + 37.5 hours working + commuting.

    If you are concerned about giving up your job because of financial reasons, I would suggest applying to firms that pay course fees and provide a maintenance grant. This probably wont be enough to pay for everything if you are living in London and paying rent/mortgage, but at least it is something to take the pressure off.

    Everything I have said relates to the current system. As this is the last year for the GDL, I don't know if what I have said will continue to be relevant for the SQE, but I think its likely the SQE will also be full on in terms of time commitment required.

    I'm in a similar situation to you as I am changing careers (also work in Canary Wharf!), although I studied law at undergrad back in 2009. I secured a TC recently and asked to study the LPC part time over the next two years which the firm has agreed to (I don't think all firms provide this option if they are funding). This means I can continue to work until I start my TC in 2022.

    I hope that helps!
     
    #2 Camilla, Sep 12, 2020
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
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  3. Alice G

    Alice G Legendary Member
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    Hi there!

    I entirely agree with @Camilla.

    If you were looking to do part time, either by self funding or if the firm you are offered a TC with is willing to allow this, I imagine part time study would be doable with the full time job.

    I can vouch, the PGDL I am doing right now is intense. They said it should be like a 9-5 job but I’ve been working much longer than that and doing a few hours at the weekend already. Granted, I’m a note taker and do labour over some tasks to ensure I’ve understood but I really do think that even if you’re super efficient, there’d be a slim chance of being able to work full time and undertake this course.

    I do hope this helps and if you have any questions about the PGDL please let me know!!
     
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  4. Adam Gilchrist

    Adam Gilchrist Distinguished Member
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    It’s worth noting that some firms (Linklaters & SM I have personal knowledge of) have a blanket ban on doing any other work for any other company while you’re studying for those 1 or 2 years, and that seems a fairly common rule for firms.
     
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  5. CarinaH

    CarinaH Star Member
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    Do they? I’ll be working all the way through the GDL and leave when I start the LPC at the earliest. Links is aware of this, so I don’t see how this could be true! At the very least it’s not a hard and fast rule...
     
    #5 CarinaH, Sep 20, 2020
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2020
  6. Camilla

    Camilla Legendary Member
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    That is interesting. If grants are usually around £10k per year, I don't see how firms could reasonably expect future trainees not to have at least a part-time job. £10k is very generous, but it wouldn't be enough to cover everything for those who need to rent in the capital.
     
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  7. Adam Gilchrist

    Adam Gilchrist Distinguished Member
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    That’s true, I didn’t phrase that correctly, sorry. The standard position is you can’t work, and so you need a fairly good reason for why they will change that rule - someone else on our scheme also asked, gave their explanation, and was still told no.
     

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