solicitors - working part time and changing sector?

(5 Posts)
Betty5313 Sun 30-Dec-12 08:23:52

I worked in private oracle (litigation , mostly property lit) in the high street and small commercial practices) for 6 yrs post qualification. then I went into local govt and reduced my hours when dd was born. I left because I was having to squeeze a full time workload into 14 hours and couldn't catch up at home because there was no money to provide the it I needed.

a year on I know I madea terrible mistake. I am miserable and grumpy which rubs off on dd. I have no one to talk to, in my localarea mums with degrees and a professional background don't seem to exist.

I don't live within reach of any cities so am limited to whatever is on offer in my county town. local govt isn't an option at the moment due to the recruitment freeze.

I was offered a job at a niche firm but the most they would do re flexibility was3 days a week, full time hours. I don't think dd, who will only just have turned three, will cope with starting school and immediately doing three days in after school club.

the salary offered was £15k less than my last salary. it is 6 years since I was in private practice, butmy in house experienceis directly relevant to this job.

should I just take it anyway? am I likely to be able to get anything better?

what do people do about school hols?

am I being unreasonable to expect dhto shoulder some of the childcare? he works hard but doesn't have anywhere near the same earning capacity. ordinarily I would say that as I was earning more he should help but the sqsalary I've been offered is only £1k more than his.

yummymumtobe Sun 30-Dec-12 21:25:28

I would take the 3 day job - I work 3 days and to be honest your son will be lucky to have a mum who only works 3 days! So many children giro after school clubs it seems to almost be the norm now. He may well really enjoy it. You're not being unreasonable expecting your partner to share the load. And he surely won't mind as it will make you happy and increase your joint earnings if you take the job!

MogTheForgetfulCat Mon 31-Dec-12 10:21:33

I work 3 days as a solicitor and have 3 DCs - at the moment I have a nanny for the days I work, so no after-school clubs. But DC1 used to go to after-school club twice a week when in Reception, and often asks when he can go back as he loved it so much grin.

Do you think there's any chance that once you're there and settled they might let you do 3 or 3.5 days over 5 so that you are in every day but some days are short so you can pick up from school?

Mandy21 Mon 31-Dec-12 15:38:11

I am also a lawyer working 3 days, with 3 DC. I was actually on maternity leave for the whole of my DCs 1st year at school, but after that, they go to after school club twice a week. I agree with the previous poster that children tend to love after school, especially if their friends go.

I do think your partner should be helping - its down to both of you to sort childcare. My H has rearranged his hours slightly so he can take the children to school and finish early one day to collect them from school - means he works late (ie gets home after bedtime) the other 4 nights. I leave v early so I start early and finish at 4pm so I can collect them from afterschool 2 nights.

In my firm, 3 days is the absolute minimum you'd get - and they really only agreed to that because I'd been there for years before I had children. I think the norm in most top firms is 4 days. If you're reluctant to take 3 days as you want to do less hours, I think you will struggle to be honest. As far as salaries go, I think the legall world is completely different now (particularly in litigation) to how it was 6 years ago. I think 6 years ago, we were still getting 10%+ pay increases each year with bonuses on top - I doubt I've had an increase of 10% in the last 6 years added together and I've definitely not had a bonus.

Good luck whatever you decide!

Betty5313 Thu 31-Jan-13 14:04:48

gosh, can't believe it is so long since I posted! I decided to turn down the job on the basis that I didn't want to reduce my salary that much. I've since applied for and been offered a temporary contract at a local authority, with more flexibility and more money. there will only be one day a week when I can't pick up dd from school at the normal time and she will have two weekdays at home with me. back to square one when the contract runs out, but at least it gets me back in the workplace!

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