Feb 09, 2018

Written By Billy Sexton, Editor, AllAboutLaw.co.uk

Law Degree Expiration

Feb 09, 2018

Written By Billy Sexton, Editor, AllAboutLaw.co.uk

With a law degree done, and a university lifestyle that you’ll never forget, the next stop for the aspiring solicitor is to undertake the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and land a training contract.

But things always don’t go to plan? One thing may lead to another and you could end up initially working in finance, media or even teaching. However, you’ve reached the late-twenties and want to reignite your passion for law and try your hand at the ol’ training contract application process again.

Here comes the spanner in the works – you’ve heard that your law degree and LPC have expiry dates and will no longer be viewed as a qualifying law degree. Uh-oh…

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Does my Law degree have an expiry date?

No.

But I heard that it does…

This isn’t the case any longer (phew!). It was previously the case (again, not any longer, we can’t stress this enough) that a undergraduate law degree or a Graduate Diploma in Law (aka GDL or law conversion course) expired after seven years for entry to the LPC.

However, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has made amendments to Training Regulations and if the SRA is satisfied you completed your degree or GDL satisfactorily, you get a nice shiny certificate stating that you completed the academic stage of training.

Does the LPC expire?

Nope. However, the longer it takes to win a training contract once you successfully complete the LPC, the more graduate recruiters are going to be asking questions. “If this candidate is dedicated to a career in law, why haven’t they been applying for training contracts previously?” And if you have been applying for training contracts either during or after your LPC, why haven’t you been successful?

The reality of an older law degree

You can apply for training contracts during your undergraduate degree and also throughout the course of your GDL and the LPC. Realistically, if you’re only starting to apply for training contracts after you have completed the LPC, recruiters will question your commitment and effort. If you’ve been applying since your undergraduate years and received countless rejections, this could be bad luck but could also boil down to uncompetitive academic results or a poor application.

Your law degree, GDL or LPC will not expire, but you should aim to maximise their shine by applying for training contracts from when you’re first eligible to do so. Waiting years until you first start making applications will not work in your favour, unless you have reasons why. Find out how to make a competitive training contract application here

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