I took a year out after finishing my LLB to travel and work as a paralegal. The Legal Practice Course (LPC) was the next step I needed to take in order to fulfil my ambition to become a solicitor. It has been a great chance to get hands on practical experience to everyday legal situations. Instead of writing essays about legal theories or the basics of contract law, you find yourself writing letters of advice to clients, drafting claim forms and conducting client interviews – a refreshing change to the abstract scenarios given in the LLB.
There will be paperwork!
Along with the vast amount of course information you will receive in your first week, you will also be given a lot of paperwork throughout the course too. Make sure you organise these papers as soon as you are given them, otherwise you could end up spending vital revision time looking for that one precedent you were given near the start of term!
Never leave a class without checking you have all the handouts safely in your folder.
Try to keep on top of all your reading and course materials. The LPC is an intense course, so it is important that you take time for yourself too. If you treat the LPC as if it were a full-time job and study 9am – 5pm during the week, this should allow you to stay on top of your workload and give you plenty of down time to spend with friends and family.
I already had my training contract in place with Stephens Scown which meant I could concentrate solely on studying and revising for exams. If you do not have a Training Contract in place before you start, remember to factor in application and interview deadlines into your schedule and set aside enough time to complete applications, do research and prepare for interviews.
Don’t forget to make friends!
It can be easy to forget the importance of making friends, especially when under the pressures of an intense course such as the LPC. Get involved in class discussions and networking events put on by local law firms and your LPC provider. After all, the people you meet whilst studying for your LPC are your peers as well as your friends and could become valuable contacts during your LPC, training contract and beyond.
And finally make sure you have fun. I studied in Bristol and it is such a lovely city with a lot of events all year round. There are farmers markets and street food markets in the city centre every week as well as annual events such as the balloon fiesta in the summer. I’m quite lucky that I live near the harbourside so in between study there’s always a chance for a lovely walk when the weather is nice.