Legal Recruitment News February 2018

Legal Job Market Report


January 2018 has been the busiest January on record for us since we started 18 years ago. All sectors have been busy – locum and permanent, qualified and non-qualified. There has been a surge in demand for solicitors in all areas of law, although we have heard from partners at London firms reporting that conveyancing lawyers are being peddled by the bucket load by a number of other recruitment agencies after large scale redundancies at a couple of volume operators in the capital. We haven’t heard this ourselves and I am not aware of any firms reducing headcount.

Full Report here

Law Firms Wanted and For Sale
17011435 Conveyancing Solicitors Firm based in Greater London looking to explore options for sale.
15111344 Well established high street law firm with 2 offices in Middlesex looking to take on a partner, sell or merge due to retirement of partners. The practice undertakes family work, conveyancing and probate. 40% family and children work, 20% conveyancing and 35% probate and estate management. Longstanding leasehold premises available.
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 are now at their lowest levels, but will start to go up as we get into Spring. Bookings for the summer are at summer rates. Up to £35 per hour in Conveyancing is still the norm for most locums, although the current competitive level for longer term assignments are £30.

Click here for full rates for January 2018.

craig hamilton parker

Predictions for 2017 – how correct was a top UK Psychic (as seen on TV)?

Craig Hamilton-Parker is our company’s favourite psychic. Every year he produces a list of predictions for the coming year and we note them and check up 12 months later to see how well he has done. He does not give up and we admire him for this, although we do sense he is a fervent Brexiteer and Trump supporter!

For the full article please click here –

You can speak to Craig about his psychic abilities and get your own personalised predictions at You can see how well he has done every year since 2010 by reading the back issues of Legal Recruitment News –

Discrimination in Recruitment – is it rife?

I write this article from a personal perspective and it is an expression of opinion only. I often get asked by candidates if they think firms discriminate against them and this article is about our experiences of behaviour that is both overt and implied.

Discrimination against Law Firms
Law firms often think that as recruiters we have a special list of candidates that we only introduce to our favourite clients and not any old Tom, Dick and Harry. This is incorrect. Such a list does not exist. What does exist is a database showing us exactly what type of firm a candidate is looking to work for, in which location and at what price. Often smaller law firms confuse this for some kind of discrimination against them on the grounds of size.

Full Article can be found here –

Permanent Vacancies in last 14 days

To search our current vacancies please visit Vacancies in the last 14 days are as follows:

VAC-17639 Litigation Solicitor A medium to large sized West Midlands firm are looking for a litigation lawyer to manage a varied caseload of commercial and civil litigation work at their Tamworth office.

VAC-17638 Legal Accounts Manager A medium to large sized West Midlands firm are looking for a legal accounts manager to work at their Tamworth office.

VAC-17637 Dispute Resolution Ombudsman A government approved Ombudsman is looking for a law graduate to work as an Ombudsman at their busy offices in Stevenage. The role will be full-time, permanent and salary will be around the 25k mark.

VAC-17633 Duty Solicitor An established law firm with offices across the Kent region have an opening for a full time, salaried, permanent crime solicitor with duty status.

VAC-17623 Accredited Police Station Rep Firm in South East London looking for a crime paralegal with police station accreditation to work at their Greenwich office. Post is full-time, permanent and salary will be negotiable depending on experience.

VAC-17622 Family Panel Member Firm in South East London looking for a family lawyer with law society family panel membership to work at their Greenwich office.

VAC-17621 Duty Solicitors Firm in South East London looking for duty solicitors to cover police stations, magistrates courts and crown court hearings on a case by case basis.

VAC-17620 Child Care Solicitor A law firm based in Basildon, Essex have an opening in their Children Department for a specialist Child Care Law Solicitor.

VAC-17619 Part-time Family Lawyer A well established Cheshire firm are looking for a family lawyer to work part-time at their Altrincham office.

VAC-17618 Senior Family Lawyer A very well established and well respected Hertfordshire law firm are looking for a senior family lawyer to work at their St Albans office.

VAC-17617 Flight Delay Claim Paralegal Specialist litigation firm in Manchester are looking for a paralegal to work at their office located within a 10 minute walk of Piccadilly Station.

VAC-17616 Actions Against the Police & Public Authorities Supervisor A well established firm with offices across North Yorkshire are looking for an Actions Against the Police and Public Authorities Supervisor.

VAC-17614 Duty Solicitor North Wales firm looking for a duty solicitor to work on a salaried basis.

VAC-17611 Commercial Property Lawyer A well established East Sussex firm are looking for a junior commercial property lawyer to work at their Shoreham office.

VAC-17610 Senior Conveyancer A well established East Sussex firm are looking for a senior conveyancing lawyer to manage a residential caseload at their Shoreham office.

VAC-17608 Head of Conveyancing A well established Surrey firm are looking for a conveyancer to work as team leader of the conveyancing department at their busy Kingston office.

VAC-17607 Conveyancing and Wills & Probate A well established firm with offices across Essex are looking for a solicitor to work at their Maldon office on the coastal side of Chelmsford.

VAC-17605 Property Solicitor A small but very well established Bedfordshire firm are looking for a conveyancing lawyer to work at their Leighton Buzzard office.

VAC-17604 Child Care Solicitor A medium sized Buckinghamshire firm are looking for a family/child care lawyer to work at their Milton Keynes office. Home working possible.

VAC-17603 Commercial Property Lawyer A medium sized firm are looking for a commercial property lawyer to manage a caseload at their Bedford office.

VAC-17601 Commercial Property Solicitor West Midlands Legal 500 firm are looking for a commercial property solicitor to work at their busy Coventry office.

VAC-17600 Residential Conveyancer West Midlands Legal 500 firm are looking for a conveyancer to work at their busy Coventry office.

VAC-17599 Social Care Solicitor A Sunderland based firm specialising in Care of the Elderly are looking to take on a solicitor on a part time basis to work initially 2 days per week.

VAC-17594 Wills and Probate Paralegal Wills and Probate Paralegal with possibility of a training contract in future (not confirmed..). Salary levels £18,000-£20,000 per annum depending on experience

Nominate a Charity 2017-2018 – deadline 5pm 7th February 2018

So far this year we have had the following charities nominated for donations by candidates and clients. To see our policy on donations please visit:

Charities Nominated for 2017-2018
Street Child – Right to Learn Appeal
Adventure Aid
Open Arms Malawi
Share Tanzania
Educate the Kids
RCJ Personal Support Unit
Changing Tunes
Freshfields (the animal rescue charity not the multinational!)
Centre for Criminal Appeals
Emmanuel House Support Centre

If anyone else wants to nominate a charity for a donation, please let me know. Our trustees are meeting tomorrow so the deadline for nominations is 5pm today (7th February). We actively campaign against high pay in the charity sector and also encourage other businesses to donate a percentage of their profits to charity.

We expect to continue our support of LawCare, Ace of Clubs (homeless charity in SW London), Reprieve and Unlock. We also have a longstanding commitment to supporting 4 school children in Tanzania, a Liverpool domestic violence refuge and a youth centre. We anticipate that our donations are going to reduce in the coming years because of the way the government now taxes dividends but we remain committed to the 10% donation of profits, as we have done now for 18 years.

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 paralegal and would like to set up a business. How do I go about doing this?

A: A timely question as a few days ago we received a press release from the National Association of Licenced Paralegals all about setting up a paralegal practice – there is an article all about this from Amanda Hamilton, CEO of NALP. I have abbreviated it and included the advice below.

By Amanda Hamilton, NALP
With solicitors and barristers charging upwards of £150 per hour, many people are now turning to Paralegals who can do much the same as a solicitor or barrister (with e few exceptions) but for a fraction of the cost. Paralegals are currently a growth area with lots of demand for their services. Now is a good time to set up your own Paralegal practice – but before you do so, here are some dos and don’ts.

Paralegals are not statutorily regulated and therefore you may come up against people who tell you that anyone can call him/herself a ‘Paralegal’ and it is not necessary to gain any training or qualification to carry out paralegal services.

So the very first thing you need to do is gain a paralegal or legal qualification or at the very least get some paralegal training and then, as much experience as possible. Once you have gained some knowledge of law and legal procedure and have gained three or more years’ relevant legal experience, you need to decide whether you wish to specialize in one area of law or would like to be a general practitioner.

Setting up in practice:
Being a member of NALP entitles you, subject to the requisite qualifications and/or experience and fulfillment of eligibility criteria, to apply for a Licence to Practise in the areas of law in which you can provide evidence of experience. This means that NALP has done its due diligence on you and thoroughly vetted you and your credentials.

Eligibility Criteria to gain a Licence to Practise:
1. Qualifications – you must have a minimum Level 3 qualification and a minimum of three years’ experience
2. Experience only – you may not have qualifications but can provide evidence of a minimum of five years’ experience
3. Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII): covering you for the work that you do.
So, you have your Licence to Practise, now what do you do?
You should ensure that there is no inference in any marketing for your business, whether via a website of Facebook Page, that you are a solicitor or barrister. This is what is known as ‘Holding Out’ and is illegal. So, in all your marketing you have to make it clear that you are a paralegal and not a solicitor or barrister. Even if you do not mention this specifically, you may be held accountable if consumers can make an assumption.
You must also be very much aware that there are certain activities you are unable to perform. You must know these ‘reserved activities’ (as defined by S12 of The Legal Services Act 2007) back to front and ensure that you do not undertake such activities. For example, you cannot buy and sell property for a client. Apart from the ‘reserved activities’, you can operate in much the same way as a solicitor, e.g. you can operate as a Paralegal Firm and have partners.

Amanda Hamilton is Chief Executive of the National Association of Licenced Paralegals (NALP), a non-profit Membership Body and the only Paralegal body that is recognised as an awarding organisation by Ofqual (the regulator of qualifications in England & Wales).
LinkedIn –

Q: I am currently seeking advice on a career change into legal work. I am currently in my final year of an LLB course with the OU (Open University). I have been studying part time while in the armed forces for 11 years and I am 29 years old. I am considering enrolling for an LPC course in 2018 and wondering what options I have and possible routes to qualify as a solicitor as I am not taking the normal conventional route. Your advice in this matter would be much appreciated.

A: You don’t say whether you have legal experience. If you haven’t got any legal experience how do you know you want to be a solicitor? Is it worth spending £000s on the LPC if you don’t know? Options include looking at the ILEX route (you can work whilst qualifying), the part time study training contract (again you can work whilst qualifying although it seems to take forever when you are doing it – I qualified via this route), or simply go to work in a law firm and do the LPC when you have decided this is the career for you.

Q: Hello Sir, I am a poor man so please grant me a job.

A: I would love to assist, but I am afraid I am a relatively poor man too and lack the magical power to grant people jobs.

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 –

Legal Recruitment News is produced by TP Legal Recruitment – you can view all versions of the e-newsletter at

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