Legal Recruitment News December 2017

Legal Job Market Report


November has been a quiet month again, but this is fairly normal as we approach Christmas. We will be writing the same thing for December! Locum assignments have actually picked up a bit, which is unusual, but permanent roles remain down. The increase in conveyancing candidates last month has now ended.

Full article at

Law Firms Wanted and For Sale

Ref 19101402 BVI law firm with licence for sale or rent or merger etc… Particularly topical following the recent Panorama investigation!
Ref 25101117 Birmingham law firm – immigration and family law looking for a merger, particularly with a larger practice if possible.
Ref 06111648 Reading firm looking to buy or merge with other practices. Happy to look at options. Smaller sized high street firms likely.
Ref 21090941 Leicester law firm looking for a sale. 5 staff, £150k turnover. Litigation firm, well established.
Ref 20092238 West Midlands law firm looking to buy up small practices and sole practitioners in the area. Funds in place to expand.
Ref 08061231 Buyer looking to purchase will banks in London and Home Counties.
Ref 04071347 Buyer looking to purchase a solicitors firm with a crime or family legal aid contract in Beds, Bucks, Northants or Herts.

Hourly Rates of Pay for Locum Solicitors and Legal Executives

Rates have now decreased slightly as we get closer to Christmas – we expect them to go down further still. Up to £35 per hour in Conveyancing is still the norm for most locums, although a good proportion are dropping to £28-32 per hour to get the assignments.

Full info at

Relocating to Ireland – What’s the Craic?

A number of PR companies have identified Ten Percent Legal Recruitment as being a news provider. With this in mind we get regular press releases from law firms, universities, companies, government departments and lots more besides. Most of this is probably about as interesting as our newsletters, but occasionally it is possible to spot a trend.

The recent trend has been ‘relocating to Ireland’ to do legal work and Irish solicitors firms offering UK clients their services for future work in the EU. With reports of some larger solicitors firms recruiting large numbers of staff in Dublin, it looks likely that some movement of business over to Ireland from the UK is going to occur. I very much doubt there is a lot of Irish legal work to compete for but relocating to Ireland and then servicing UK clients seems to be the idea. Whether the whole relocation thing has any longer term effect once the whole EU departure thing is completed is another matter entirely.

So relocating to Ireland – how easy is it to open a company, get a postal address and get going in Ireland?

Restrictive Covenants – do they put employees off?

We have recently introduced a candidate to an employer where a restrictive covenant was used which must surely fall foul of rather a lot of employment regulations!

The role is a fairly junior fee earner position and not senior management or director level.

The restrictive covenant was actually called a “non-compete clause” and included the following:

1. Not to directly or indirectly compete with the business of the company…during employment or for a period of 3 years after termination of employment.
2. Not allowed to contact…any client or prospective client the employee had dealings with during employment.

“Not compete” is defined as the employee not owning, manage, operate, consult or be employed in a business similar to or competitive with the company.

Full info at

Free Marketing Advice for Law Firms in January 2018

Have you got a marketing question you want answering? How much of your turnover should you spend on marketing? Is LinkedIn or Google Adwords more efficient? What keywords should I use to get the most business? How relevant is traditional marketing as opposed to digital? Is Facebook a waste of time (we think so!)?

We often get emails from Nick, a non-practising solicitor, advertising his marketing services. We have asked him to write a few articles for Legal Recruitment News and he has agreed. He will provide free marketing advice to any law firm who contact us with a specific or general question regarding law firm marketing, with publication in next month’s edition. Simply email your query to and I’ll pass it on. We get no financial benefit from this link up.

Paralegals are more likely not to turn up for Job Interviews than any other staff. Why?

Out of 5 job interviews arranged for paralegals and junior fee earners, we estimate that 1 candidate will not turn up. For solicitors and legal executives we think the figure is closer to 1 in 20. Why? Here are our top reasons.

1. It is much easier to apply for a job than it is to explain in person why you should be given it.
2. Paralegals lack confidence in their legal knowledge and skills. Are they going to look silly when they attend the interview?
3. Romford to Luton as a daily commute looked fine when they applied.. Location is a key issue – paralegals don’t seem very good at identifying a reasonable distance to travel.
4. The thought of actually going out to work is considerably harder to contemplate than staying at home.
5. Whilst £18k sounded good when applying, the train fare will remove the first £3k of this.
6. Qualified solicitors and legal executives have jumped through a lot of hoops, worked very hard and actually attended job interviews to get where they are. A lot of potential paralegals and junior staff fail at the first hurdle.

Full article here:

Should Law Graduates Pay for Careers Advice?

Recently (a legal blog) ran a series of articles discussing whether graduates should consider paying for training contract advice after the Junior Lawyers Division (JLD) strongly advised against it. Although we no longer provide careers advice ourselves, we were approached for comment as we still sell training contract advice packs via one of our websites. This was the comment we added:


To search our current vacancies please visit

Ask a Recruitment Consultant – questions this month on our chat bot

Questions sent to us via our Chat service online, together with general career questions emailed across. We do our best to answer all queries, sometimes after a fairly lengthy delay if we are busy!

live chat

Our New Chatbot

Q: I am a New Zealand qualified solicitor looking for paralegal opportunities with an immediate start. Can you assist?

A: No – very unlikely. We have been recruiting for UK law firms since April 2000 and I can count the number of New Zealand lawyers we have successfully assisted on one finger. For some reason UK law firms want UK qualified or experienced staff. Try Hays, Michael Page or LawStaff.

Q: I am being considered for a property locum role for 6 months in -house for a housing association. It is not a transactional role. Would the fact that it is non transactional and with a housing association harm my chances of getting commercial property transactional locum work afterwards with private practices?

A: Hard to say – yes to a certain extent because your in house experience will be the last thing on your CV, and law firms tend to want locums who have private practice experience. However if you have 15 years private practice experience prior to this then you shouldn’t have a problem.

Q: How do I find work as a McKenzie Friend?

A: Not a clue – I don’t think I have ever come across anyone advertising for them! Have you tried approaching a body like the Citizens Advice Bureau to get work that way?

Q: I want to get the Legal Knowledge. Can you help me?

A: I did wonder whether this person is actually after a taxi firm. Naturally the answer is no. I have been searching for the Legal Knowledge since law school 20 years ago.

Low Cost Recruitment for Solicitors – Ten Percent Unlimited

Ten-Percent Unlimited is a service offering unlimited recruitment for a set monthly fee. It was set up by us back in 2011 with the aim of making the use of a recruitment agency cost-effective in a time of great financial difficulties for all in the profession. It is still going strong – we have had over 110 clients signed up to date – most of whom have been sole practitioners or smaller sized law firms.

The Unlimited Recruitment service offers law firms the chance to recruit as many permanent or locum candidates as needed over a period of 2-5 years in return for a monthly payment. There are no restrictions on numbers (although salaried vacancies have to exist and we do operate a fair usage policy – so far never used) and no other costs. No other similar services exist in the recruitment industry.

For example you may recruit a few locums for cover each year, a replacement conveyancing solicitor, a couple of legal secretaries, possibly a paralegal or two and have a look to expand the firm into a new area of law with an additional fee earner. All of this would cost considerable amounts in advertising and/or recruitment agency fees. However with Ten Percent Unlimited you simply pay a monthly fee.

One of our recruitment consultants works full time on our Ten Percent Unlimited member firms’ recruitment needs and is always happy to talk about the service. If you would like a chat with Clare Fagan, please give her a ring on 0207 127 4343 or email

How to be a Locum – pdf guide

We have produced a guide on how to be a locum. This includes sections on getting work, realistic expectations, hourly rates, popular fields of law, payment, insurance, umbrella companies and much more. Available for download or to read online from

About Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment

We are a specialist legal recruiter, covering both permanent and locum roles across the whole of the UK. Over 11,000 lawyers are registered with us and we have access to a range of external and internal job boards and websites where we do not have candidates available ourselves. We also assist with recruitment advice and assistance, regularly advising partners and practice managers on suitable salary and package levels.

Our company is unique for a number of reasons, including the fact that we are not shy to publish our fee structure and also donate a chunk of our profits to charity each year. We offer unlimited permanent and locum recruitment for a fixed monthly fee or one-off fees depending on the job. We donate 10% of our profits annually to charity, hence our name.

We have three recruitment consultants, Jonathan Fagan, Clare Fagan and Pete Gresty, together with our finance director Pearl McNamara. As a team we have over 40 years of experience in the legal profession.

Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment also owns Interim Lawyers, a specialist locum service. We operate an outsourced UK based typing service as well – and are preferred suppliers to a number of institutional clients and law firms across the UK and overseas.

The Ten-Percent Group of Legal Recruitment websites gives 10% of annual profits to charity. We have carried on with this tradition since we formed the company 15 years ago. So far over £90k has been donated to charities in the UK and Africa including LawCare, Unlock and Reprieve.

We hope you have enjoyed reading our newsletter and look forward to hearing from you if we can assist further.

Warm regards

Jonathan Fagan

T: 0207 127 4343 Limited
20-22 Wenlock Road
N1 7GU

Jonathan Fagan is a solicitor, qualified recruitment consultant and Managing Director of Limited. His LinkedIn profile can be viewed here –

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