Aspiring trainee solicitors planning to start their training contracts or 'period of recognised training' in 2022 need to apply in 2020. Those on a law degree need to plan ahead and submit polished online applications at the end of your second year. If successful, the upside is you'll go into your final year with a graduate job all lined up plus, in some cases, sponsorship from your law firm for the legal practice course or LPC.
Of course, 50% of trainees come from a non-law background and complete the graduate diploma in law (or GDL) conversion course before starting the LPC. Most of these law firms accept training contract applications from final-year, non-law undergraduates by this key date too, but it varies from firm to firm so do check the online profiles above.
It's worth noting that smaller, niche and high street firms tend to recruit closer to trainees' start dates, such as Kennedys.
Applying well before the deadline is recommended
Word of warning: many commercial firms start sending out invites to assessment centres and interviews before their training contract deadline so it's worth being organised, checking firms' websites for more details and submitting your application well before the deadline if you can.
Massive changes to the way solicitors qualify are on the horizon. Do you know how they will affect you? Find out here.