Law Review: No rooms at The Inn and what makes a good lawyer?

“The number of students who want to become barristers shows little sign of diminishing with 3,100 applicants to the Bar Professional Training Course (BTPC) in 2010/2011 and 3,016 in 2011/2012. In 2010/2011 1,618 students successfully enrolled on the BTPC”

With a steady downward trend in the number of pupillages over the past ten year – 456 first six pupillages recorded for October 2010-September 2011 – it is surprising that the number of BPTC enrolments remains so high. Interestingly, The Guardian reports that UK university applicants drop by 12% before tuition fee rise. Will this trend feed through to law?  I suspect not.

As Zoe Saunders, a family barrister at St John’s Chambers, notes in a most interesting article in The Lawyer today…

I presume that any student who signs up to the swingeing BTPC course fees really does want to become barrister rather than using the BPTC as a bizarrely expensive way of moving on to do something else.

The article is a good read if you are considering a career at the Bar.

Paul Gilbert has a subtle article in The Lawyer today – a very interesting perspective on What makes a great lawyer?

This is hard…after all, after the law degree, law school, training, qualifying, trying to make your way, putting up with partners behaving like four-year-olds and working your socks off…of course it should be about you!

…But it isn’t.

It’s not really even about what you know. Obviously you have to know a great deal about the law; your technical skill set is precious and important and is your ticket to play; but it doesn’t make you a great lawyer.

It’s not about who you work for either…having a successful letterhead to write on is an advantage, might open doors, might do some of the early hard yards in helping you build your personal credentials – but at the end of the day it is just a letterhead and does not make you a great lawyer.

So what does?…

Read more to find out…


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