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Graduate solicitor apprenticeship Your fast-track route to qualifying as a solicitor

Our graduate solicitor apprenticeship is aimed at those who have completed their law degree, or those who have completed a non-law degree and the GDL.

What is the Weightmans graduate solicitor apprenticeship?

You can apply for a Weightmans graduate solicitor apprenticeship from the penultimate year of your law degree, or final year of your non-law degree (if you plan to complete a Graduate Diploma in Law, or equivalent).

If you have already commenced study towards, or completed, your legal practice course (LPC) please see our training contract pathway. This follows the same application process. Successful candidates will be placed on the most appropriate pathway for them to qualify as a solicitor.

Our graduate solicitor apprenticeship will support you through the new pathway to qualification by completion of the Solicitors Qualifying Exams (SQE1 and SQE2). This means that you can join us straight from your degree or GDL and start gaining on the job experience, and earning a salary, earlier.

The apprenticeship is a 30-month programme which provides you with the best learning and development opportunities in order for you to qualify as a solicitor. One day each week is dedicated to off-the-job study with the four remaining days gaining your required work-based experience. You will complete five six-month seats across different areas of the business, learning from leading experts in the legal field.

Why have we changed to follow the SQE route?

Following a lengthy period of research, development and consultation, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has announced that the Legal Practice Course (LPC) will be replaced by the Solicitors Qualifying Exams (SQE). This will be launched from September 2021 and the LPC will be phased out. As a firm, we have closely followed updates and consultations of the legal education reforms and we have spent a great deal of time planning our new SQE-ready programmes. We are excited to launch our new graduate pathway, which we believe brings a number of advantages. Trainees can join the firm straight from university, qualify as a solicitor earlier and learn the academic content of the SQE1 whilst working in a legal role, applying it to practice from day one.

Is this for you?

We are looking for a specific type of individual who will fit in well with our ethos and culture. We are looking for those who are passionate about law and committed to a career as a solicitor. You will need to show that you are a resilient individual, with the drive and determination to succeed for our clients.
You need to show that you have a strong academic background. You will be required to have obtained your LLB Law degree or Graduate Diploma in Law before the position commences in September 2022.

What is included in a Weightmans graduate solicitor apprenticeship?

You will be learning on the job with a robust support network as you complete five six-month work placements in teams across the business. Alongside BPP University Law School, we will help you achieve to the best of your ability and upon successful completion, you will be a qualified solicitor. View a course outline. One day each week will be dedicated to off the job learning to ensure that you can maintain a good work/life balance whilst completing your solicitor qualifying exams (SQE1 and SQE2) with all fees paid by the firm.

Why choose us and what we will do for you

Here at Weightmans, people are the integral part of our culture and business, and your success is our success. We have great working practices for ensuring a mindful and considerate working culture as signatories of the Mindful Business Charter.

In many of our offices, we have a unique and open office space accompanied by agile working for a great work-life balance. With a focus on learning and development of our people, we are proud to have consistently high trainee solicitor retention rates.

As much as we work hard, we play hard too! Having an appropriate work/life balance is something we value for all of our people. Our social calendar is always full, from theatre visits and quizzes to office parties. Each of our offices has an active social committee who are always looking for new members to get involved. We will encourage our graduates to keep in touch as a national cohort with a number of annual events.

We pride ourselves in our CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) work and support a number of deserving charities, both nationally and local to our offices, including Zoe’s Place, Francis House, Simon on the Streets and many more. As part of our commitment, all staff receive two days of paid CSR leave each year, and each office has a local committee who are always looking for new members, and this may be something you would like to be a part of once you join us.

We offer an excellent salary and benefits. For year one as a graduate solicitor apprentice you would receive a salary of £25,000 (£30,000 London), which will increase after 12 months to £27,000 (£34,000 London). As a Weightmans employee, you will also be entitled to our excellent staff benefits including:

  • 25 days' holiday
  • Healthcare cover
  • Pension plan
  • Travel loan scheme
  • Employee care scheme
  • Discounted gym membership
  • Dental care scheme

How to apply

If you have a passion for law and a desire to qualify as a solicitor, with an enthusiasm for delivering excellent client care, we would like to hear from you. Please check the following eligibility criteria for applications:

  • You must be available to start the role on a full-time basis in September 2022.
  • You must be available to attend an assessment centre on the week of 21 June 21 2021 in Liverpool or the week of 28 June 2021 in Birmingham. Please note that no other dates will be available.
  • You must have strong academics with an LLB law degree or non-law degree and GDL (or equivalent) obtained before September 2022.

Our applications are open from 5 November 2020 to 18 March 2021. Once you have completed your online application form you will be invited, by email, to complete two online assessments – a preference questionnaire and verbal reasoning test. The outcome of these online assessments, along with your online application form, will determine if you will be invited to an assessment centre. The assessment centres will be held on Thursday 24 June 2021 in our Liverpool office and Thursday 1 July 2021 in our Birmingham office.

Arrange a chat to find out more

If you have any further questions or queries, please email apprenticeships@weightmans.com and one of our team will arrange to give you a call.

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