Should I become a solicitor or do something I am interested in?

(24 Posts)
moonshine004 Thu 28-Feb-19 00:28:52

I am currently working full time at a law firm as a case worker. I have a 2:2 Law degree with really crap A Level results like really bad...

I am at a point in my life where I am so confused, I don't know whether I should do the LPC and qualify as a solicitor. There is potential for me in gaining a training contract at the firm I currently work in but only next year when one of the trainees finish. However I cannot say that this is 100% guaranteed and will have to stay, keep working hard, prove myself and just hope for the best.

The reason for my confusion is that I have always had interest in media, I have been really fascinated by cinematography and documentaries and I just feel like I have a calling. However I have no connections, experience or anything and hence I don't know how I could go about having a career in it. To be honest, media is a very broad term and has many fields in it but I cannot exactly pinpoint what I want to do.

I am really being pressured by my family as well to do the LPC however the more I am being pressured the less I want to do it. To be honest my heart is really not in it and I am already sick of working at the law firm although it has only been a bit more than a year. My boss always makes me work deadlines and on cases that I hardly know anything so I am constantly under pressure. I am hoping to get married in the next 2 years and start a family and while I would still like to work after having children, I don't think I will be able to manage being a solicitor and looking after my children too.

Can someone please give me some advice and guidance on this, I am feeling really lost and I really cannot decide on what to do

OP’s posts: |
Oliversmumsarmy Thu 28-Feb-19 00:51:16

If your heart isn’t in it before you start you are going to be bored out of your mind once you do qualify.

Before doing anything drastic I would spend your free time deciding exactly what it is you want to do in Media.

Better to do something you are interested in than clogging a dead horse and trying to persue something you find tedious.

FWIW ultimately the happier people I know (and sometimes the richest) are people who went into careers they had an interest in.
Those that qualified in something that didn’t hold their interest but it paid a big salary usually ended up spending a good proportion of their take home pay on activities and habits to reward themselves for getting through the day/week

NWQM Thu 28-Feb-19 01:07:12

I’d suggest that you need to consider mapping out your plans im stages and their priority.

If your priority is getting married and starting your family can you afford to lose the maternity entitlement that you have in your current job. If your timeline really is 2 years to start a family then is now the right time to change tack?

Would you be able to stay in your current job and not train? Mark time career wise? Give yourself then chance to use annual leave etc to see what is out their in the media / what courses you could do?

Do you have the resources available to retrain or would you need an entry level job and hope to work up?

Just things to think about really that came to mind when reading your post but overall I’d say that actually you don’t have to make a final decision now. There isn’t a training place so you can’t actually train as a solicitor so don’t need to decide whether too if you see what I mean. You have time first to explore other options and have a fall back position.

Good luck

JustRichmal Thu 28-Feb-19 09:05:31

Unfortunately the media calls to a lot of people; many more than it needs. It also highlights the one or two who can say "They said I would never make it" rather than the thousands saying, "They were right."

You will not prosper in a job you find tedious, but media is not necessarily the answer. If you do want to try it for a career, give yourself a time limit, but first get to a point where you have a career to fall back on.

Hollowvictory Thu 28-Feb-19 09:07:08

You need to define what you mean by 'media' before you can make a decision.

BubblesBuddy Thu 28-Feb-19 13:16:02

The bad news is a 2:2 in Law and poor (ish) A level results you would be lucky to get sponsorship for the LPC. Are you being sponsored by your firm because they know you? If they don’t give you the training contract, I assume paying yourself is out of the question. They may well want someone with a better degree quite honestly so I’m not sure you will be offered the position.

If you have seen the work and you don’t really fancy it, don’t do it. What you do want is risky too because it’s ultra competitive. If you don’t give it a go you will never know.

Oliversmumsarmy Thu 28-Feb-19 15:44:21

Friend did her gap year then her Law degree and took her first job to be a solicitor.

She sat crying at her desk over the waste of the years studying law as she hated it.


BubblesBuddy Thu 28-Feb-19 16:37:06

That’s not how everyone feels though! OP already works for a solicitor. She does know the job. If they advertise for s trainee solicitor, they might get better qualified applicants. If someone doesn’t like Law, it’s best to change rather than slog on to be a solicitor and still hate it years down the line!

Witchend Thu 28-Feb-19 16:46:59

Unfortunately the media calls to a lot of people; many more than it needs. It also highlights the one or two who can say "They said I would never make it" rather than the thousands saying, "They were right."

Unfortunately this is a very true statement. I know a number of people who felt called to media. The only one who wouldn't be in the "They were right" category is in the category of "I'm just taking a little rest from it, and then I'm sure I will get a big break."

And it's not necessarily better for a family. In fact I'd suspect you'd be as likely to get a part time solicitor post as one where you could choose your hours in media, because there's always 10+ people ready to replace you.

What your OP reads like to me is that you've realised that you don't want to be a solicitor. You don't really know what you'd like to do instead. You want to be able to say to friends/family not "I didn't want to be a solicitor" but "I have a dream that I had to follow".

Accept that you don't have to be a solicitor. You don't. Go and look at what you can do. There may be something out there that is perfect, or you may need to try different things. Many of us are doing things we never dreamt we would do. And some of them are far better than the dream we had when we left uni.

Xenia Fri 01-Mar-19 12:10:49

I am not sure it is a great idea for those with low A level grades to practise law - similar to iff we let potential doctors in with poor exam grades. Is it not a bit dangerous for clients and patients?

Oliversmumsarmy Sat 02-Mar-19 14:32:21

I think you need to decide what exactly you want to do because once you find it then everything else will fall into place.

Ds struggled all through school. Was bottom of the class by a huge margin in every exam.

At college studying something he is really interested in, not only was he put in the year above. (Already covered the first year) but he is top of the class with a near 100% exam and assessment results and I’d hoping to finish the course within 2 terms.

Vivaldi1678 Sun 03-Mar-19 05:40:25

It doesn't sound as though you are very interested in having any career, as your priority seems to be to get married and have a family. Nothing wrong with that, of course. However, a legal qualification is useful and you are lucky if you have the chance of a training contract. There are opportunities far beyond the grind of being a 'paralegal'/caseworker, including legal jobs in the media. A friend of mine, a qualified barrister, works in house for a newspaper, and another has worked at a senior level for several high profile media companies - both love their jobs,
although they are 'full on', so may not suit you.

I would say carry on until you have made a decision on doing something else. Don't do the LPC because your family want you to do it, but equally don't throw away an opportunity unless you have something better to go to.

What doe your fiancé think?

mamansnet Sun 03-Mar-19 06:51:06

I was about to suggest media law too. I've been in media for nearly 15 years but I'm getting out because my particular strand of it is not at all family-friendly (hours/travel). I loved the media law module I did at uni though.

You first need to figure out what branch of media though. The term covers everything from film to TV, music, magazines, newspapers, books, radio, websites, fiction, factual and news journalism. In my side of the industry there's also production, editorial and technical to think about. And that's just the start!

Definitely use your law background as a stepping stone to get into to the industry though. How about becoming a specialist journalist? I know someone who qualified as a doctor before getting into journalism and now she's a very decent health correspondent. Find out what Martin Brunt did to become Sky's crime editor. What about the legal trade press?

Some unis offer specialist courses in sports journalism, perhaps there are others with a strong emphasis on criminology?

HedgePlastic Sun 03-Mar-19 07:00:08

Definitely solicitor. You can do your hobby in your spare time.

beachyhead Sun 03-Mar-19 07:03:07

Get qualified and then move to a media company. It's all about the long game really....

Fightthebear Sun 03-Mar-19 07:12:17

Looking at my friend in TV, their jobs are much less family friendly than being a solicitor, there’s no option for part time working.

It sounds like you’re not keen on a law career at all, but if you were, qualifying on the job as a paralegal/legal executive might be a better option than LPC/training contract given the 2:2.

Fightthebear Sun 03-Mar-19 07:18:21

Law Society info about qualifying as an apprentice on the job.

Fightthebear Sun 03-Mar-19 07:21:59

Although when I was googling the Law Society link, the MI5/MI6 apprenticeship scheme came up:

Probably not helpful grin

liitlepenguin Sun 03-Mar-19 07:53:26

Look at Ilex route over LPC / training contact. If your law firm fund it even better

JocelynBell1 Sun 03-Mar-19 09:53:38

Considering you have a 2.2 degree and really poor A-level results, you are very lucky to have an opportunity of a training contract with a law firm. I don't think you appreciate how hard many have had to work to get the same opportunity.

Media is the ultimate gig economy and if you want to work in media, you will also need to keep the day job to pay the bills. You need to have a really long think about whether or not you are prepared to put in the hours and commitment to make it in media.

Cloudtree Sun 03-Mar-19 10:01:59

Do not try to become a solicitor unless you really really want to do it. Its a tough job in terms of intellectual requirements, stress levels, working hours etc. You clearly don't have a passion for it and would be taking a big financial risk unless you can get your firm to give you an assurance about a training contract (which to be blunt I'm not sure why they would?)

moosesormeece Sun 03-Mar-19 10:05:09

I had a 2:1 in my GDL (and my actual degree before that) and great A levels and I took the advice I heard from a lot of sources that if I couldn't get a firm to fund the LPC then I was unlikely to get a training contract and would be chucking my money away. Like you my heart wasn't really in it, so I now do something else.

Why not have a look around at other postgrad courses that would cost the same as an LPC and see if anything grabs you?

BlueJeansNiceTop Sun 03-Mar-19 10:07:51

How old are you?

HerculesMulligan Sun 03-Mar-19 10:18:18

I say this to be realistic, rather than unkind, but you will struggle to get any media law job with a 2:2 and poor A level results.

I head up a team of media lawyers for a big media company you'd know, and the last time I advertised for a paralegal, we got 200 applications. I weeded them down to people with excellent academic results and flawless applications and still had 60 - for one role.

Law is competitive. Media law is beyond competitive. And fairly geographically limited too - 90% of those jobs are in central or west London.

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