20 January 2021
Aspiring solicitors can qualify through the solicitor apprenticeship. This provides an alternative to the traditional qualification route through university and may suit candidates who want to ‘earn as they learn’. As an apprentice, your training and assessments are paid for through the apprenticeship levy fund.
As with all aspiring solicitors from September 2021, solicitor apprentices must pass the SQE assessment to qualify as a solicitor. The apprenticeship includes SQE training, as well as the assessments, and typically takes 5 to 6 years to complete. At the end, providing apprentices pass the assessment and meet our character and suitability requirements, they can qualify as a solicitor.
Some employers also offer solicitor apprenticeships to individuals who have already completed some legal training, such as a law degree, the Legal Practice Course or the Trailblazer level 3 paralegal apprenticeship. These candidates also need to complete all the elements of the SQE. However, depending on their experience and skills, they may not take the full 5 to 6 years.
There is detailed information on apprenticeships on the GOV.UK website, where you can also search and apply for apprenticeships in England.
Read our Q&As on the solicitor apprenticeship.