Articles From the Team

The questions you must ask yourself if you're nearing qualification

Are you approaching qualification? How certain are you that your firm will retain you? Maybe you’re questioning whether you want to remain at your current firm?

Many trainee solicitors spend just a few months experiencing different areas of law and as their qualification date draws nearer they remain unsure of what they want to do and what they want to qualify into. As a trainee, it’s pivotal you start exploring the legal market early, preferably six months prior to qualification (at least) to start developing your knowledge and insight in order to narrow your interests.

What you need to start thinking about

  1. Do I like contentious or non contentious work?
  2. Do I want a work/life balance?
  3. Do I want to narrow my experience in a particular area?
  4. Do I enjoy any of the areas I gained experience in?
  5. Is my goal to be recognized in the legal 500 directories?

In order to answer these questions you need knowledge of the market and the different areas of law. It’s also important to accept that each firm is likely to be different in terms of culture, exposure, progression opportunities and so on. These factors are only likely to affect you after you’ve accepted a new position and this is why it’s key to do as much research as you can prior to accepting.

Subjective factors such as personalities within the team, support and the general culture within the firm are normally disregarded by NQs as their main focus is to gain experience and to put a reputable firm on their CV. These factors shouldn't be disregarded as these are likely to impact your decision on whether you remain at the firm and consequently, they'll impact your career development in one way or another.

If you’d like to feel better equipped in time for qualification, don't miss out on our 2019 NQ talks. We'll summarize everything you need to know. Not to mention food and open bar!

Next event

In conjunction with the Sheffield Junior Lawyer Division, our next event will be held at the Creative Lounge on 13 February 2019. Our guest speaker, Alison Fernandes, Partner at Irwin Mitchell will talk you through her legal career journey.

For other events, please keep an eye out on our social media channels or contact BCL Legal or email us at

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