Training for in house lawyers in 2015 and beyond

Training for in house lawyers in 2015 and beyond

Published:

Author: Andrew Pickin

The SRA have new proposals for legal training. This broad new training regime for all aspirant and qualified solicitors is expected to come into force from November 2016.

On an optional basis the SRA has also stated that solicitors can opt to move to the new regime with effect from Spring 2015.

The key elements of the new Competence Based Regime are (as currently proposed) set out below. Readers should note that the SRA proposals have been the subject of public consultation and are not yet regarded as final. However we understand that final proposals will be put to the SRA's Education & Training Committee for approval in early March 2015 and will be published soon afterwards. It appears likely that the final form will differ little from these key elements:

  • The new Regime will move away from process to a standards based approach
  • The Competence Statement which will be at the centre of the Regime is intended to be 'a model that defines effective performance' by a solicitor or aspirant solicitor. The Statement should 'capture the key activities required for effective performance as a solicitor' and is therefore a benchmark which solicitors and training providers can use.
  • The draft Competence Statement breaks down into four domains:
    • Ethics, Professionalism and Judgment
    • Technical Legal Practice 
    • Managing Yourself and Your Work and 
    • Working with Other People
  • The Competence Statement is backed up by two other documents:
    • Threshold Standard (sets minimum standards of competency for those about to qualify) and
    • Underpinning Statement of Legal Knowledge (sets out areas of law intending solicitors must demonstrate before qualification and also what practising solicitors are intended to know)

This is a very significant change and we are currently totally re-designing our training offering and associated support to meet the different needs of IHLs in this new world. We will be providing more details in future bulletins of our plans.

Disclaimer

This document is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. It is recommended that specific professional advice is sought before acting on any of the information given.