Training Contract/Vacation Scheme offers to international law students studying outside UK?

keepmewherethelightis

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Oct 4, 2021
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Hi,

Are there any law students studying outside the UK who got a Training Contract/Vacation scheme offer in their penultimate/final year of study?

I am a law student from India and I am considering applying for direct training contracts to law firms which sponsor visas during the TC. I would have considered vacation schemes as well- however, I doubt that any firm would sponsor visa for a vacation scheme for an international applicant; and I did not find any such information online. Nevertheless, if there are any firms that you know sponsor visas for international vacation scheme applicants, please let me know! Also, I am aware of the India Internships that Linklaters/A&O and HSF offer. Unfortunately, I could not apply for these ones and am looking for alternate routes now.

It would be very helpful to talk to international applicants who received a direct Training Contract in their penultimate/final year of law school. Also, if there are any Indian students/graduates who have gone through this route (without the specific India Internships), it'll be very helpful to connect with you.

Thank you so much!
 
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wildprincessx

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Aug 6, 2019
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Hello! I'm an international student who secured a Training Contract in my final year of law school- do drop me a DM if you need any advice or help. :)

With regards to the VS, I heard that Macfarlanes do sponsor visas for vacation schemes. However, I'm afraid I'm not sure how reliable this is; it would be good to check with Grad Rec!
 

Ucheodigili

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Oct 10, 2021
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Hello Wildprincessx,

I just stumbled upon your reply and I really would need your advice. I am a post graduate student planning to apply to a couple of firms for a vacation scheme. I hope to secure a training contract in the long term through this route too. Can I contact you to get some tips and direction on the application process. I would really appreciate that.
 

annemie.heubach

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Apr 4, 2021
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Hi,

Are there any law students studying outside the UK who got a Training Contract/Vacation scheme offer in their penultimate/final year of study?

I am a law student from India and I am considering applying for direct training contracts to law firms which sponsor visas during the TC. I would have considered vacation schemes as well- however, I doubt that any firm would sponsor visa for a vacation scheme for an international applicant; and I did not find any such information online. Nevertheless, if there are any firms that you know sponsor visas for international vacation scheme applicants, please let me know! Also, I am aware of the India Internships that Linklaters/A&O and HSF offer. Unfortunately, I could not apply for these ones and am looking for alternate routes now.

It would be very helpful to talk to international applicants who received a direct Training Contract in their penultimate/final year of law school. Also, if there are any Indian students/graduates who have gone through this route (without the specific India Internships), it'll be very helpful to connect with you.

Thank you so much!
Hi! I am having the same problem in that Latham and Watkins told me that they will not sponsor a visa for vacation schemes, and that many firms will not do so! So if you find out what firms will please let me know!!. I will ask around in the meantime and let you know if I find anything.
 

AvniD

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Hi! I am having the same problem in that Latham and Watkins told me that they will not sponsor a visa for vacation schemes, and that many firms will not do so! So if you find out what firms will please let me know!!. I will ask around in the meantime and let you know if I find anything.
Hi! I seem to remember from one of Jessica's recent posts that firms are generally not willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes as the cost is between 3-5k GBP, which is difficult to justify for a 2-4 week scheme. @Jessica Booker can you please confirm if I have got this right?

@annemie.heubach I would recommend you to contact every firm on your shortlist and confirm whether they are willing to sponsor visas. Should you not find any firm willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes, then please do consider applying through the direct training contract route as well.

I was an international applicant and secured my training contract through the direct route so please do feel free to ask any questions that you may have about my experience and I will try my best to support you!
 

Jessica Booker

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Hi! I seem to remember from one of Jessica's recent posts that firms are generally not willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes as the cost is between 3-5k GBP, which is difficult to justify for a 2-4 week scheme. @Jessica Booker can you please confirm if I have got this right?

@annemie.heubach I would recommend you to contact every firm on your shortlist and confirm whether they are willing to sponsor visas. Should you not find any firm willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes, then please do consider applying through the direct training contract route as well.

I was an international applicant and secured my training contract through the direct route so please do feel free to ask any questions that you may have about my experience and I will try my best to support you!
Yes - that's correct.

Exceptions tends to be if they have a specific recruitment drive to recruit people from that nationality for a longer term growth strategy (eg I have done it for candidates from the US/India/Australia).
 

annemie.heubach

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Apr 4, 2021
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Hi! I seem to remember from one of Jessica's recent posts that firms are generally not willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes as the cost is between 3-5k GBP, which is difficult to justify for a 2-4 week scheme. @Jessica Booker can you please confirm if I have got this right?

@annemie.heubach I would recommend you to contact every firm on your shortlist and confirm whether they are willing to sponsor visas. Should you not find any firm willing to sponsor visas for vacation schemes, then please do consider applying through the direct training contract route as well.

I was an international applicant and secured my training contract through the direct route so please do feel free to ask any questions that you may have about my experience and I will try my best to support you!
Hi! Thank you so much, I really appreciate that advise. Okay, I will be doing this and asking firms to see what they say! For firms like Herbert Smith Freehills who do not recruit through the direct route this means I would not be able to get a training contract there, correct (if they do not sponsor vacation schemes)? I will get back to you once I have heard back from some firms and then see whether I am able to apply to vacation schemes or not. Thanks again!
 

AvniD

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Hi! Thank you so much, I really appreciate that advise. Okay, I will be doing this and asking firms to see what they say! For firms like Herbert Smith Freehills who do not recruit through the direct route this means I would not be able to get a training contract there, correct (if they do not sponsor vacation schemes)? I will get back to you once I have heard back from some firms and then see whether I am able to apply to vacation schemes or not. Thanks again!
Hi @annemie.heubach try to be clinical about the firms you shortlist. If they do not sponsor visas for a training contract or vacation scheme, do not have a direct training contract application route and fall below the salary threshold for a skilled worker visa, then I would advise you to avoid applying to them and shortlisting other firms that meet your criteria as an international applicant instead.

Let me know if I can help with anything else. Wishing you the very best!
 
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keepmewherethelightis

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Oct 4, 2021
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Hi! I am having the same problem in that Latham and Watkins told me that they will not sponsor a visa for vacation schemes, and that many firms will not do so! So if you find out what firms will please let me know!!. I will ask around in the meantime and let you know if I find anything.
Hi! I've been asking around as well - firms usually do not sponsor visas for vacation schemes. As @wildprincessx mentioned (and as I confirmed from Grad Rec too), Macfarlanes does sponsor visas for vacation schemes as well. I couldn't come across any other firms who do so, though!
 

annemie.heubach

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Apr 4, 2021
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Hi! I've been asking around as well - firms usually do not sponsor visas for vacation schemes. As @wildprincessx mentioned (and as I confirmed from Grad Rec too), Macfarlanes does sponsor visas for vacation schemes as well. I couldn't come across any other firms who do so, though!
Hi, Mishcon de Reya also review on case by case basis (so would provide visas), I am waiting to hear back from more firms and will let you know once I know.
 

keepmewherethelightis

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Oct 4, 2021
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Hi, Mishcon de Reya also review on case by case basis (so would provide visas), I am waiting to hear back from more firms and will let you know once I know.
Thanks! Just to filter out and make it easier - the following firms replied to me saying that they would not sponsor visas for Vac Schemes: Ashurst, Hogan Lovells, Latham & Watkins, Baker McKenzie, Freshfields, DLA Piper, Dentons, A&O, Linklaters.
 

001CLO

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    Hi!

    I am in the penultimate year of study of a 5 year integrated undergraduate law course (India). I was willing to apply for vacation schemes. However, on my inquiry, almost all firms do not sponsor visas for their vacation schemes. Nor do they reimburse travel and accommodation costs. Given the circumstances, I cannot apply for vacation schemes and would, instead, prefer the direct TC route which is economically viable for me.

    I was confused w.r.t. the cycle in which I should be applying. I am afraid my law degree in India is not recognised in UK and thus, I would be a 'non-law' candidate. In light of this, should I be applying for TCs in this cycle i.e. 2021-22 (penultimate year) or 2022-23 (final year)? I am expected to graduate in June 2023.

    Additionally, can you guide me as to how the new SQE would impact the timeline for my joining as a trainee at a law firm?

    @AvniD @Jessica Booker @wildprincessx - your posts have been particularly helpful on this thread, would be grateful if you could guide me.

    Thank you for consideration and time!
     

    AvniD

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    Hi!

    I am in the penultimate year of study of a 5 year integrated undergraduate law course (India). I was willing to apply for vacation schemes. However, on my inquiry, almost all firms do not sponsor visas for their vacation schemes. Nor do they reimburse travel and accommodation costs. Given the circumstances, I cannot apply for vacation schemes and would, instead, prefer the direct TC route which is economically viable for me.

    I was confused w.r.t. the cycle in which I should be applying. I am afraid my law degree in India is not recognised in UK and thus, I would be a 'non-law' candidate. In light of this, should I be applying for TCs in this cycle i.e. 2021-22 (penultimate year) or 2022-23 (final year)? I am expected to graduate in June 2023.

    Additionally, can you guide me as to how the new SQE would impact the timeline for my joining as a trainee at a law firm?

    @AvniD @Jessica Booker @wildprincessx - your posts have been particularly helpful on this thread, would be grateful if you could guide me.

    Thank you for consideration and time!
    Since law firms generally recruit two years in advance, I think it's best to apply later in this cycle and/or in your final year so that you leave one year to do the GDL and one year for the LPC/SQE prep course. I am not sure how the SQE will impact this recruitment timeline, if at all. I think it's best to bring in @Jessica Booker to advise on that.

    I applied via the direct training contract route so let me know if I can help you with that at all!
     

    futuretraineesolicitor

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    Since law firms generally recruit two years in advance, I think it's best to apply later in this cycle and/or in your final year so that you leave one year to do the GDL and one year for the LPC/SQE prep course as law firms generally recruit two years in advance. I am not sure how the SQE will impact this recruitment timeline, if at all. I think it's best to bring in @Jessica Booker to advise on that.

    I applied via the direct training contract route so let me know if I can help you with that at all!
    Hi!

    I am in the penultimate year of study of a 5 year integrated undergraduate law course (India). I was willing to apply for vacation schemes. However, on my inquiry, almost all firms do not sponsor visas for their vacation schemes. Nor do they reimburse travel and accommodation costs. Given the circumstances, I cannot apply for vacation schemes and would, instead, prefer the direct TC route which is economically viable for me.

    I was confused w.r.t. the cycle in which I should be applying. I am afraid my law degree in India is not recognised in UK and thus, I would be a 'non-law' candidate. In light of this, should I be applying for TCs in this cycle i.e. 2021-22 (penultimate year) or 2022-23 (final year)? I am expected to graduate in June 2023.

    Additionally, can you guide me as to how the new SQE would impact the timeline for my joining as a trainee at a law firm?

    @AvniD @Jessica Booker @wildprincessx - your posts have been particularly helpful on this thread, would be grateful if you could guide me.

    Thank you for consideration and time!

    If you get a TC with any of the City Consortium firms (Freshfields, HSF, Hogan Lovells, Linklaters, Norton Rose Fullbright, Slaughter & May), you'd have to do the PGDL + SQE 1 + SQE 2 + City Consortium Plus Program (basically to develop a few more technical and soft skills). All in all, this should take you about 18-19 months and only then can you start your TC.

    Even though the PGDL is not a requirement for Indian students like us, the firms make all of their future trainees do it.

     
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    intllawstudent

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    Since law firms generally recruit two years in advance, I think it's best to apply later in this cycle and/or in your final year so that you leave one year to do the GDL and one year for the LPC/SQE prep course. I am not sure how the SQE will impact this recruitment timeline, if at all. I think it's best to bring in @Jessica Booker to advise on that.

    I applied via the direct training contract route so let me know if I can help you with that at all!
    Hi! I am new here and would be great if I can have some advice too :)

    I am an international, law, final-year student from a common law jurisdiction (not India), but I have similar questions so I thought it'd be helpful to ask here rather than under a new thread.

    If I apply for direct training contracts, do I still have to apply for the GDL/PGDL, and then the LLM Legal Practice (for SQE 1+2)? I see that SQE now recognises any degree such that the GDL is not strictly necessary, but my law degree, even though of a common law jurisdiction, does not cover all UK core modules (eg EU Law, Property Law).

    Is it more of a firm-dependent issue, or is PGDL commonly required?

    Quite concerned because, if PGDL is actually not required, I will fall outside of the group of "penultimate year law student" and some firms do expressly prioritise penultimate-year students.

    I have some legal working experience (including vacation schemes) so my profile should hopefully be a lesser concern; and I have also looked into visa issues.

    Thank you so much to everyone!
     
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    AvniD

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    Hi! I am new here and would be great if I can have some advice too :)

    I am an international, law, final-year student from a common law jurisdiction (not India), but I have similar questions so I thought it'd be helpful to ask here rather than under a new thread.

    If I apply for direct training contracts, do I still have to apply for the GDL/PGDL, and then the LLM Legal Practice (for SQE 1+2)? I see that SQE now recognises any degree such that the GDL is not strictly necessary, but my law degree, even though of a common law jurisdiction, does not cover all UK core modules (eg EU Law, Property Law).

    Is it more of a firm-dependent issue, or is PGDL commonly required?

    Quite concerned because, if PGDL is actually not required, I will fall outside of the group of "penultimate year law student" and some firms do expressly prioritise penultimate-year students.

    I have some legal working experience (including vacation schemes) so my profile should hopefully be a lesser concern; and I have also looked into visa issues.

    Thank you so much to everyone!
    Welcome to TCLA @intllawstudent! We are so happy to have you here and hope you make the most of the resources and support that we have to offer you!😇

    Although I am an international applicant, I obtained my law degree in the UK so I am not best placed to offer advice on the GDL based on my experiences and will instead direct you to some resources.

    This article on the SRA website is particularly helpful- Here's an extract from it-

    If you’re an overseas student, in order to qualify as a solicitor in England and Wales, you’ll need to:
    From this article, it seems like there is no longer a requirement to undertake either the GDL or the LPC, if you can show that your degree is equivalent to a UK qualifying degree that is, and the SQE entirely replaces them.

    This article on Chamber Student seems to confirm my interpretation. An extract from it-

    How this is going to change once the SQE comes into force in 2021? If you are a student with a non-UK degree (either in law or other subject), and you are not a foreign qualified lawyer in a jurisdiction recognised by the SRA, you may still be eligible to qualify as a solicitor through the SQE. You will need to show that your non-UK qualification is equivalent to either a UK degree or equivalent UK qualification through a UK NARIC Statement of Comparability, and complete the two-year period of qualifying work experience like all other domestic candidates who pursue the SQE route. The work experience can be obtained in England and Wales or overseas.

    It's great that you feel confident about your profile- kudos to you for getting vacation schemes too! 👏 👏 👏 As for whether you think your penultimate year status will be an issue, it's best to confirm this directly with firms by informing them that you are pursuing your degree overseas and have doubts about your eligibility to apply for their direct TC, given the recent changes in the routes to qualification. Once you have their confirmation about your eligibility, you can apply for their TC without worrying about wasted effort or them rejecting you solely on a technicality about your student status.

    Also tagging @Jessica Booker here for her advice on this!
     

    James Carrabino

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    Thanks! Just to filter out and make it easier - the following firms replied to me saying that they would not sponsor visas for Vac Schemes: Ashurst, Hogan Lovells, Latham & Watkins, Baker McKenzie, Freshfields, DLA Piper, Dentons, A&O, Linklaters.
    This is extremely useful and thanks for starting this thread! Have you heard anything back from other firms? We may be able to compile a list of which firms sponsor visas for vacation schemes once we have enough information!
     

    keepmewherethelightis

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    Oct 4, 2021
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    This is extremely useful and thanks for starting this thread! Have you heard anything back from other firms? We may be able to compile a list of which firms sponsor visas for vacation schemes once we have enough information!
    Hi @James Carrabino! A few other firms did get back to me, unfortunately - none of them sponsor visas for vacations schemes. I heard back from Addleshaw Goddard, Charles Russell Speechlys, Fieldfisher, Stephenson Harwood and TLT Solicitors confirming this. :(
     
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    James Carrabino

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    Hi @James Carrabino! A few other firms did get back to me, unfortunately - none of them sponsor visas for vacations schemes. I heard back from Addleshaw Goddard, Charles Russell Speechlys, Fieldfisher, Stephenson Harwood and TLT Solicitors confirming this. :(
    That's disappointing but thank you for the update on this!