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Law: Training

A guide to careers as a barrister, solicitor, legal executive or paralegal



The qualifications you need to get started in this sector

Our resources


Studying law can be expensive; the following options exist to help cover the cost

Law Conversion Courses

If you have not studied a law degree, but would like to qualify as a lawyer, you will need to take a conversion course. These are sometimes called Graduate Diplomas in Law (GDL) or Common Professional Examination (CPE). Usually these courses are one year long although they can be done part time

Other legal professions

According to English and Welsh Law, the following professions are allowed to carry out legal work

ProfessionRights of audienceConduct of litigationReserved instrumentsProbate activitiesNotarial activitiesAdministration of oaths
Solicitor Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Barrister Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Notary No No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Legal Executives
Yes No No No No Yes
Licensed Conveyancers No No Yes No No Yes
Patent Attorneys Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Trade Mark Attorneys Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Law Costs Draftsmen Yes Yes No No No


What next?

The first step to getting qualified as a lawyer is usually to qualify with a Law Degree or Graduate Conversion Course such as a GDL or CPE

What you do after this depends on where you want to go

Here's our information on how to qualify for different legal professions


An LLM is a Master's in Law

Some conversion courses and Legal Practice Courses have the option of upgrading to an LLM by completing a dissertation