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Law Apprenticeships Guide

Your legal apprenticeship skills checklist

updated on 24 August 2023

A law apprenticeship combines an interesting job and training at a law firm with part-time study. This means hard work, but the rewards are well worth it. Here’s a checklist of the necessary skills and what you must do to get off to a flying start as a legal apprentice.

  • Good written and verbal communication skills. Lawyers advise people in person, over the phone and in emails and letters, so writing and speaking with confidence is crucial.
  • Attention to detail. This is one of the cornerstones of the legal profession, so it’s essential that you take a careful and thorough approach to all the work you produce as an apprentice, checking and rechecking as you go.
  • Good interpersonal and customer service skills. As an apprentice you’ll meet a wide range of different people, from colleagues in your organisation to clients that need one of your legal services. You must be friendly, enthusiastic and professional, even with difficult clients.
  • The ability to work well as part of a team. Solicitors and the other types of lawyer found in law firms rarely work alone. A law firm is one big team divided into smaller teams with  different areas of expertise who help each other out, so as an apprentice you’ll work closely with others. Being a team player is essential.
  • Strong organisational skills. Apprentices must stay on top of multiple tasks and be able to prioritise and meet deadlines. They also need to balance their law firm role with studying part time, so it’s important to work hard and be organised.
  • A strong academic track record. Law is an intellectually rigorous and demanding profession. Employers will look for evidence of a strong work ethic, so work hard at getting the best results you possibly can during your GCSEs and A levels (if applicable).
  • A desire to learn. Although a law apprenticeship offers a great opportunity to get straight onto a fulfilling career path after leaving school, the learning has only just begun once you join a law firm as an apprentice. You’ll train and study to become an expert legal professional, so enthusiasm to learn more is a must.
  • A passion for the firm. Legal apprenticeships vary in length depending on what level they are but most solicitor apprenticeships last six years. Do your research and make sure you only apply to firms you can see yourself growing with.