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Solicitor degree apprenticeship Earn a law degree and qualify as a solicitor with no student debt

Our solicitor degree apprenticeship is an alternative to university, and those student loans and fees! The programme is for aspiring solicitors with a passion for law who have completed, or are in the process of completing, their A-levels.

Are you a good fit?

We are looking for a specific type of individual who will fit in well with our ethos and culture. The Weightmans’ solicitor apprenticeship will be an intense path, so 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 will have a strong academic background. Using a contextual recruitment system, Rare, we are able to identify high performing candidates by putting candidates’ grades into the context of their academic and social background. Therefore, we are looking for candidates who have obtained or are predicted 128 UCAS points, however, if you narrowly miss out we would still encourage you to apply as we will judge each application on its own merits and this may be adjusted based on personal circumstances. Please contact our early careers team via email at apprenticeships@weightmans.com for further information.

What is included in the Weightmans solicitor degree apprenticeship?

As you progress with your apprenticeship you will build a portfolio of tasks completed and experience gained whilst working in legal teams within the business. You will be learning on the job with a robust support network including your own personal Weightmans mentor and a dedicated buddy. You will have the opportunity to experience a range of departments covering different areas of law during the six years, with the programme tailored to your requirements and interests.

You will complete your part-time study with BPP University Law School and upon successful completion, you will be a qualified solicitor with an LLB degree in Law and Legal Practice. View the full BPP 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.

We don't want our future lawyers to only be technically excellent, we also want them to have the skills necessary to understand our clients' businesses and our own. Therefore, you will also complete our bespoke learning and development programme throughout the six years, which has been designed to develop your core professional and business skills. You will cover areas including digital literacy, marketing, change management, law as a business and project management, in a varied programme which will help to prepare you for your career as a solicitor and enable you to provide the best service to our clients.

Programme structure

  • Stage 1 – years 1 and 2

    • Apprenticeship study includes: English legal system, contract law, tort or land law, client care, legal research and public law.
    • Your day to day job will be: two placements in two different legal teams where you will learn about our business practices and handle legal tasks.
    • We will also train you in: how a law firm works, personal effectiveness, finance, Microsoft Office and time management.
  • Stage 2 – years 3 and 4

    • Apprenticeship study includes: criminal law, tort or land law, company law, trusts law, professional conduct, advocacy and negotiation.
    • Your day to day job will be: two further legal placements and the opportunity to work within a business services team such as finance, IT or marketing.
    • We will also train you in: understanding our clients, project management, pricing, presentation skills and negotiation.
  • Stage 3 – years 5 and 6

    • Apprenticeship study includes: property law & practice, dispute resolution, wills & administration of estates, criminal law & practice. You will complete your Solicitor Qualifying Exams in year 6.
    • Your day to day job will be: completing more complex work in two final placements and make a decision of where you would like to qualify as a solicitor.
    • We will also train you in: business development, problem solving, decision making, horizon scanning and design thinking.

Why choose Weightmans?

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.

We want our apprentices to qualify as solicitors who possess a range of transferable business skills, which enable them to not only understand our business but also be sound advisors to our clients.

Our bespoke learning and development programme has been designed to enhance these skills and alongside this, during the six years, you will have the opportunity to gain experience in our non-legal teams, this could be anything from finance to our innovation team. We believe this will help you to become a more well-rounded legal professional by providing a unique opportunity to understand how all aspects of a law firm work.

“Weightmans is fully committed to investing in its people through their Apprenticeship Academy. As the firm’s first ever Legal Apprentice, I was nervous about taking this new route rather than the traditional university route but with the second to none commitment, support and quality training I received, I know that I made the right decision to opt for a legal apprenticeship.”
Jordan Coulton Paralegal at Weightmans and England’s first higher legal apprentice

 

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 apprentices to keep in touch as a national cohort with a number of annual training 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 solicitor apprentice, you would receive a salary of £17,000 (£21,000 London), which will increase annually, and reach £27,000 (£34,000 London) in your final year as an apprentice.

As a Weightmans employee, you will also be entitled to our excellent staff benefits which include:

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

Meet us to find out more

We are running two open events, which would usually be hosted in our office, but this year will be online. Details of how to apply for a place will be available on this page in the coming weeks.

If you have any questions, please contact our early careers team via email at apprenticeships@weightmans.com.

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 initial applications:

  • You must be available to start the role on a full-time basis in September 2021
  • You must be available to attend an assessment centre week of 16 February 2021. Please note that no other dates are currently available.
  • You have obtained, or been predicted to obtain, 128 UCAS points. Please note that if you narrowly miss out we would still encourage you to apply as we will judge each application on its own merits and this may be adjusted based on personal circumstances.

The application process will open in November 2020, for positions commencing from September 2021. Further information will be published here in the coming weeks. For now, you can express your interest using the form below.

Express your interest

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