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Guest dvero

Solicitor - cross qualification UK to Oz

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Guest dvero

Problem !

 

Has anyone cross qualified as a solicitor in Oz from the UK? I am a solicitor based in the UK and intend to relocate to Australia permanently within the next 12 months.

 

I have submitted an application to The Legal Admission Board, which has been approved, subject to first completing 6 further areas of study, such as Australian Constitutional Law. The difficulty I have is trying to work out how I can complete these studies from the UK before getting to Oz. I have heard that some Oz universities offer distance learning courses, but can find nothing. Any constructive ideas would be gratefully received.

 

Kind regards

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Sorry I don't have the answers to your questions but wanted to say welcome to Pomsinoz.

Kate


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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Try this link to give you a idea of which universities offer law courses:

 

Australian Law School Rankings

 

You will need to check the courses offered in each instance to check whether distance learning is offered.


WA SS Offered 2/3/12 | 176 Visa Application 8/5/12 | Completed WA SS Returned 9/5/12 | CO Assigned 23/5/12 | Meds 20/7/12 | Pre-Grant received 18/10/12

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Hi there....

 

The College of Law in London allow you to do them if I am not mistaken... worth giving them a call as there is also a branch of college of law in Sydney... Good luck...

 

Nikci


176 (family) visa lodged - 7/3/08 CO assigned - 18 Nov 08 VISA GRANTED - 29 Jan 09... arrived 7 June 09

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Guest Frantastic

Hi Im currently cross qualifying over in oz from the uk! they told me 5 subjects but I appealed and got down to 4! thats worth looking at! i think it will depend on what state you are going to im in VIC and I know Deakin do it via distance learning but the board of examiners/admission authority of the state you're going to will be able to advise you which uni's offer that and which will satisfy their requirements. I think the college of law london do offer a course but again you would have to check it meets the admission authority requirements. Its not much fun doing it and working full time - which ones do you have to do? Fran

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Hi,

 

I wondered if anybody has gotten any further with this and is practising in Australia?

 

I am living in Australia at the moment on an employer sponsored visa but wanted to qualify to be admitted as a lawyer. I have completed a non-law undergraduate degree in the UK followed by the GDL(law conversion).

 

I have recently applied to the relevant Legal Admissions Board for academic exemptions and have been told I need to complete 13 units which seems like a huge amount. The uniform principles suggest that someone with my qualifications would need to study 6 ....

 

I am going to appeal this decision but in terms of studying wondered if anyone has started and figured out where the best place to study is? My local university charges almost $2,000 per unit. I can do the units through the NSW Admissions Board for about $600 per unit, however am interstate in the NT (NSW completes the assessments for the NT). The course via the Board seems to expect attendance at a few weekend lectures each semester so may be tricky for me to get there with work sometimes.

 

Thanks :)

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Guest guest73691

Hi

 

I'm in the process of starting the additional study I need to do to work towards being admitted in NSW.

 

I did a law degree in the UK, but I have a feeling that if you have done a non-law degree followed by GDL you will automatically be required to take more subjects than if you have done a 3 year law degree. Maybe query this with the LPAB to confirm, I found their website to be a little confusing at times.

 

I'm not sure about distance learning for the core undergraduate subjects, but the College of Law offers online study for the Professional Responsibility and Solicitors/Trust Accounting modules (plus others if you need to take them). If you are a PR/Australian citizen these cost about $800 each, otherwise you will be an 'international student' and they will cost about £1100 each.

 

MsAKW

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Thanks for your response. According to the Uniform Principles somebody that has studied the GDL/CPE should only need to do 6 units. I am currently writing a further letter to the LPAB to request that they review their determination so hopefully they will reduce the number of units that I need to study (although I'm not too hopeful).

 

I don't have my PR yet (am still waiting for my visa to even be allocated to a case manager) so I would have to pay the full tuition fees at College of Law. At the moment I am thinking of taking the additional units with the LPAB but will check out the College of Law.

 

How many additional units have they said you will have to complete? Were you admitted as a lawyer in the UK?

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Guest guest73691

Yes I'm admitted in the UK. I have to take 4 academic subjects (constitutional law, evidence, practice and procedure and legal ethics) plus the 2 subjects with college of law. I'll be taking the academic subjects with the LPAB/Sydney Uni as it will be most convenient for me working in Sydney. They also seem to be the cheapest option in the Sydney area!

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I have received my final response and they are still saying I need to do 11 subjects, a lot of which I have already covered in my previous study. I phoned the LPAB and was told that as I haven't been admitted in the UK I am assessed in accordance with the Diploma in Law course rather than the admission rules or the uniform principles. They have given no reasons for their determination either but I was told they don't have to. It seems a complete waste of time and money but I don't really know if I have any other options. Also certain courses aren't even offered at my nearest University, for example a course in succession.

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Problem !

 

Has anyone cross qualified as a solicitor in Oz from the UK? I am a solicitor based in the UK and intend to relocate to Australia permanently within the next 12 months.

 

I have submitted an application to The Legal Admission Board, which has been approved, subject to first completing 6 further areas of study, such as Australian Constitutional Law. The difficulty I have is trying to work out how I can complete these studies from the UK before getting to Oz. I have heard that some Oz universities offer distance learning courses, but can find nothing. Any constructive ideas would be gratefully received.

 

Kind regards

 

Sorry for dragging up an old post.

 

You say extra modules; does this exclude the LPC/PLT?

For example, would you need to complete the extra modules prior to starting a PLT course?

Going on the assumption that you would be a graduate of an LLB.

 

I'll be finishing my studies soon and rather than continue my studies on UK law, I'd rather start focusing on Aus law or studies that will help with practicing there.

 

​Thanks.

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Sorry for dragging up an old post.

 

You say extra modules; does this exclude the LPC/PLT?

For example, would you need to complete the extra modules prior to starting a PLT course?

Going on the assumption that you would be a graduate of an LLB.

 

I'll be finishing my studies soon and rather than continue my studies on UK law, I'd rather start focusing on Aus law or studies that will help with practicing there.

 

​Thanks.

 

Hi Mackie,

 

Yes 11 extra modules excluding the PLT course that I will then have to do. I have actually completed the GDL rather than the LLB and after having a lengthy discussion with somebody from the LPAB it seems that in Australia the GDL isn't accepted the same as an LLB because it is just 1 year of legal study as opposed to 3. It also made a bit of a difference because I hadn't been admitted in England & Wales. I was told that the guidelines in the Uniform Principles are for somebody who has been admitted (ie the common additional requirements).

 

Have you applied to any of the Admission Boards for directions? I'm interested to know what other people in my situation are doing.

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My OH went through the Admissions Board here in WA and was told he needed to do 6 units and the PLT to be admitted to practice. (he has the LLB and the LPC but never admitted to practice) He was given a list of 'approved' universities where he could study them in WA, we worked out it was going to cost us about $22k (domestic fees) to study the 6 and do the PLT so in the end we decided it was too much.

 

If he finds an employer willing to fund this then he'd certainly revist the idea, but for us - having already got a student loan for the LLB and a professional studies loan for the LPC amounting to £35k we're done with paying for legal qualifications!

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I'm also currently looking into this (LLB grad with LPC). It's a bit annoying that not only does the LPC not count as the PLT equivalent when IMO it's superior, but it isn't even given credit for academic study on that topic. I'm currently awaiting information from my uni as to the precise content of the modules I studied so I can apply for exemptions and start the longwinded process of qualifying over here.

 

The Uniform Principles are clear IMO as to the expectations/process and what you need to do depending on which stage of qualification you're at. Given that the route to qualification is very different over here ie once you complete the PLT (which is half the length of the LPC) and do 3 months 'legal work' you're qualified, as opposed to 1 year LPC + 2 years TC, I think it's fair enough that they insist on an LLB equivalent rather than accepting solely the GDL if you're not already admitted. I must say that as a client I wouldn't be particularly happy if the NQ I was instructing had completed only 1 years academic legal study, 4 months 'practical' study and 3 months work experience, no matter how clever they might be, so I think it's sensible the Law Soc are protecting the reputation of the profession in that way. No personal insult to @sazm2k12 intended btw!

 

@macke4298 if I were you I'd seriously look into the College of Law. As far as I'm aware there's no affiliation between the Oz and UK colleges of the same name, so don't get them confused. The Oz college of law offers PLT onsite in London http://www.collaw.edu.au/shop/practical-legal-training/london-onsite so if you can get on with applying to the LPAB for exemptions, with a fair wind you may be able to go straight to doing the PLT and complete it before you leave for Oz. You can then do the work experience over here in NSW/Vic/QLD/whereer (or might even be able to get some of it done in the UK). If you need to complete some more academic units before starting PLT you might be able to do them online with a provider but I don't have any info on that.

 

hth

Edited by LizzyTinKnicks

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@nicolac34 yep, it's not cheap! PLT alone is $8, $11k for intl students. What work is your OH doing - has he managed to find suitable legal work without the qualification? I'm in the same boat, with my qualifications and several years worth of legal experience I'm overqualified to be a law clerk/paralegal but underqualified to be a legal advisor...

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@nicolac34 yep, it's not cheap! PLT alone is $8, $11k for intl students. What work is your OH doing - has he managed to find suitable legal work without the qualification? I'm in the same boat, with my qualifications and several years worth of legal experience I'm overqualified to be a law clerk/paralegal but underqualified to be a legal advisor...

 

That's the crux of it really, he's not been working for the past 8 months because he's stuck - just like you it seems! Overqualified for the more junior roles and not enough experience for the more senior ones. He was working for a professional services firm who outsourced him as a legal/co sec, but they made him redundant in August. He's just accepted a 6 month contract working for the local council as a governance policy officer starting Monday (which after 8 months we are pretty thrilled!) and we've signed him up to do the Chartered Secretaries Qualification, he has 4 units to do which are $1,950 each - so again not the cheap option, but we felt he needed to qualify in SOMETHING to have some kind of chance of a career going forwards.

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Guest guest73691
Sorry for dragging up an old post.

 

You say extra modules; does this exclude the LPC/PLT?

For example, would you need to complete the extra modules prior to starting a PLT course?

Going on the assumption that you would be a graduate of an LLB.

 

I'll be finishing my studies soon and rather than continue my studies on UK law, I'd rather start focusing on Aus law or studies that will help with practicing there.

 

​Thanks.

 

My route here was: LLB - LPC - training contract - 1.5 years PQE. I have now been working for almost a year as a lawyer here in Oz. I have to say that if I wasn't able to come over here and work with my UK qualifications, I am not sure I would put myself (or afford to put myself) through the expense of the additional university/COL fees to qualify here. However, I appreciate it would depend on an individual's financial situation as well as their level of desire to be a lawyer over here.

 

Another point to consider is whether you may ever want to practice law in England & Wales. If so, you may be better trying to qualify there before you move abroad. I'd say its probably just as competitive over here to get a grad position with a law firm as it is to try and get a TC in the UK. I think it is much easier to try and break into the legal industry (whichever country you are in) once you have some experience under your belt. At least that is what my various lawyer friends have found to date. Again, I appreciate that this isn't the route that everyone would want to (or is able) to take.

 

Best of luck, Ms AKW

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In hindsight I would agree with you Ms AKW about trying to qualify in the UK first. I am going to try and carry on with my studies in Oz now and get qualified out here and then if I ever decide to move back to the UK cross that bridge when I come to it. Although moving back is not really on the cards at the moment but who knows for the future. I have done a bit of research and it looks as if I would have to do the QLTT to be admitted to practice in England.

 

I am sponsored at the moment through a law firm in a paralegal type role and have to stay here for two years anyway to get my permanent residency so for me personally I feel like the time and money in qualifying out here would be worth investing. I agree that it is very expensive to qualify out here but my wages here are also much better than they would be back in the UK and I will be able to self fund whereas back in the UK I think I would struggle to self fund the LPC even doing it on a part-time basis.

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I wondered if anybody who has posted on this forum has made any progress and also what they have been doing for work? I'm currently 2 units into my study to be admitted and I'm really struggling financially and also to manage the workload. I have been studying through the University of New England via distance, I started off doing 2 units a semester but had to cut back due to not being able to afford the fees and also it was becoming too stressful with work and all of the uni work. I definitely didn't think the workload would be as heavy as it is with uni as well. My day job isn't difficult but I have a lot of work to do and often have to stay back late which cuts into my university study time. If I carry on at this rate (1 unit per semester) it is going to take me 4 years which doesn't help much with my motivation.

 

I don't find my job incredibly challenging which I don't think helps with my motivation levels which is why I ask what everybody else is doing for work? I started off in a legal secretary role and its become more paralegal but I still end up spending most of my time doing admin tasks rather than legal work. Its either get a more challenging job that I actually enjoy or saving up enough money to stop work and study full-time.

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Hi @sazm2k12 - I can't help with your particular situation I'm afraid but wanted to post so I can keep an eye on this thread. My OH will finish his training contract in the summer so will be admitted to practice in the UK around September. We're then hoping to submit an assessment to the WA board to see which additional units he'll need to study to be admitted to Australia (must admit I'm getting nervous already about the cost)

Sorry to hear it's not going as well as you'd hoped for your studies, hope it picks up soon for you


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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Thanks Louisella :-) good luck with the assessment. Did your OH do the LLB or GDL? I know a few UK qualified lawyers who applied to WA for their admission ... the result depended on which route they had taken but I think the ones with the LLB had to do about 5 or 6 units. This took them about a year part-time. Would you consider other states? I know of at least one Darwin firm who has sponsored overseas qualified lawyers to come and work out here and they have paid for their exams too.

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Hi @sazm2k12 , my OH has done the GDL and the LPC and will finish his TC in August. I think they're going to say it'll be about 5 to 6 units. To be honest, we're quite open and where we go - WA would be the fist choice because of family but we wouldn't rule out other areas.


"The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page"

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@macke4298 if I were you I'd seriously look into the College of Law. As far as I'm aware there's no affiliation between the Oz and UK colleges of the same name, so don't get them confused. The Oz college of law offers PLT onsite in London http://www.collaw.edu.au/shop/practical-legal-training/london-onsite so if you can get on with applying to the LPAB for exemptions, with a fair wind you may be able to go straight to doing the PLT and complete it before you leave for Oz. You can then do the work experience over here in NSW/Vic/QLD/whereer (or might even be able to get some of it done in the UK). If you need to complete some more academic units before starting PLT you might be able to do them online with a provider but I don't have any info on that.

 

hth

 

Thanks for replying!

I've only just read this some time later!!

 

Weirdly, I'm studying at the College of Law (now University of Law) in London.

 

I'll be studying my LPC/Masters specialising in international commercial law.

 

I really hope I don't have to complete 14 odd modules as I've seen some people saying they have to do.

 

 

 

Just thinking; is it possible, do you think, to studying those extra modules now?

I mean, get my LLB assessed and then start studying modules prior to applying for 189/admittance to state society?

 

Thanks again for the response :)

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Hi Mackie,

 

If you have done the LLB then you won't have to do that many (I don't think). I had to do 12 because the Australians don't have a GDL equivalent. I think you could start studying now for admission though. I study via the University of New England and they have students studying all over the world!

 

Good luck :)

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