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CILEx lead me down the correct path to my chosen legal career

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We are delighted to share an article written by one of our students who has recently qualified. Read Katie's story about her journey to becoming a CILEx Lawyer: 

“CILEx lead me down the correct path to my chosen legal career.”

It is always difficult to predict where exactly your education and subsequent career is going to take you. Many young people opt to undertake an undergraduate law degree at university with the intention of then completing a legal practice course, securing a training contract at a law firm in a specialism of their choice and qualifying as a solicitor. I now know that this only works out for a small percentage of law graduates. 

Whilst it was always my intention to take the university route into law, I was always open to other alternative pathways into the legal profession. Whilst in sixth form, I applied for universities and level 3 advanced apprenticeships in legal services. I was fortunate enough to secure both, but I opted for the legal apprenticeship option which is a combination of work based learning and academic law exams. I secured a job at KLS Law as a Costs Negotiator on the Costs Department. After completing my apprenticeship, I progressed professionally at KLS Law and worked as a Paralegal in the Fast Track Litigation Department. In April 2017, I moved to the Multi Track Litigation Department as a Paralegal for one of the firm’s Senior Partners. In October 2019, I qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive. I manage my own cases and continue to work as part of a legal team on very high value Multi Track cases.

The legal apprenticeship and subsequent CILEx route studying with The Law Academy in Liverpool was the best option for me. I was able to secure employment and gain invaluable legal experience whilst earning at the same time. I would certainly advise anybody looking to pursue a career in law to consider the CILEx or apprenticeship route as opposed to the traditional university route. Experience is something prospective employers are looking for, it is not just all about the academic grades you achieve. One of the great things about CILEx is that once you are qualified, you already have all of the skills to be a practising lawyer whereas, quite often, university graduates have to secure paralegal positions to gain relevant experience before securing a training contract.

Young people should be aware that the traditional route is certainly not the only route that will lead to a successful career in law. If anything, there are even more achievable options available through CILEx. I left sixth form in July 2014 and by October 2019 I had become a Chartered Legal Executive Lawyer. There is no denying that 5 years of combined study and work-based learning is challenging, but it a challenge worth taking on for anyone with a passion for law. I would recommend that young people explore the CILEx route into the legal profession because it is something I would strongly recommend as a key to a successful and progressive career in law.

Katie Everson FILEx





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