Working as an Interim Lawyer
Interim Lawyers: A Growing Opportunity
Today firms are increasingly looking to interim working to help manage their workflows. Factors such as maternity cover, the need for specialist skills for short-term projects and market uncertainty mean interim legal workers are in demand.
A Flexible Way to Work
Interim work offers the flexibility of short term commitment. It gives you the chance to earn a good salary and to learn new skills or experience different legal disciplines. It’s a very useful option if you’re at a career crossroads and want time to consider your next move. Interim positions also help overseas candidates gain UK work experience. Contracts can range from a few days to a year or more in duration.
Pay is generally much the same as permanent staff salaries – depending on your specialism, qualifications and experience. It’s usually the case that private practice pays more than in-house.
The Difference Between Temporary and Contract Assignments
Temporary and interim assignments -They’re usually much more short term than contract arrangements and also tend to feature shorter notice periods. The contractor is paid by the hour, submitting timesheets each week to the client for approval. The contractor’s agency is responsible for payment. All payroll administration is handled between the agency and contractor.
Contract assignments – These are often used when the need stretches over a longer timeframe – for instance, maternity cover, long term sickness leave or a specific period of increased workload. Recruitment is similar in nature to that for a permanent role. Start and end dates are set, and the candidate is paid a salary and receives benefits from the firm or company.
Tax and NI Matters
PAYE – your tax and National Insurance are deducted by the company you’re working for. This happens whether you’re defined as a temporary worker, or on a fixed-term contract and considered employed by a firm.
Limited Company Rules
Working as a limited company or providing your services through one means the company pays you, and is responsible for deducting your tax a and NI. It’s not possible to work on a fixed contract for a firm via a limited company – the firm you’re contracted to has to handle your deductions.
Our Typical Interim Candidate Profiles
More often than not, interim work means starting at short notice. That’s why we won’t usually put you forward if your existing notice period is longer than four weeks.
Many candidates use interim positions to give themselves time to consider their overall career direction. Others are ‘career locums’; people who utilise the freedom and flexibility to pursue other interests. Some firms use interim work as a trial period before offering permanent employment.
If interim work appeals to you, register here and we’ll keep you updated on these opportunities.
Document Review Advice
Providing lawyers for document review projects is a busy strand of BCL’s business – particularly in terms of placing people with ‘high end’ London firms.
With our extensive connections and experience, you can gain the opportunity to get ‘a foot in the door’ in some of the world’s best firms – including many US, Magic and Silver Circle firms, and smaller ‘boutique’ practices.
If you’re qualified in litigation or a paralegal with relevant expertise, London document review work pays extremely well. The crucial criteria include:
- Litigation experience
- Being registered to work in the UK
- A readiness to begin work at short notice
As much litigation work crosses boundaries, you may also need to have worked in several different jurisdictions, and bi or multi-lingual skills can be a real advantage.
If you wish to register with us for document review roles, the process includes:
- Filling in the BCL registration form
- Completing a face-to-face interview at our London office
- Providing two references
- Showing proof of eligibility to work in the UK
- Showing relevant qualification certification
- Being able to start work at short notice
Please call 0845 241 0933 or fill in our contact form if you wish to pursue document review opportunities through BCL.