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Law news for aspiring barristers and solicitors

Weekly law update

Updated every Thursday morning, we give you the essential information you need to keep on top of your applications and raise your commercial awareness for interviews or meetings with law recruiters. We’ve also added some other titbits of information that might interest you.

8–15 February: Pupillage Gateway closed, vac schemes until February, island criminals, partners’ pensions and itchy wigs

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What you MUST know:

Next steps for pupillage applicants

The Pupillage Gateway has now closed to applications for 2017 and we wish everyone who is applying for pupillage this year the very best of luck. Many other sets that don’t use the Gateway have also closed to applications, so now it’s time to think about what happens if you get invited to interview. Thankfully we’ve got you covered on this front as well – check out our article on how to ace your pupillage interview for more help on how to handle what will probably be the most competitive interview(s) of your life.

TARGETjobs Law National Pupillage Fair videos and advice

If you’re an aspiring barrister or chambers representative and you missed out on the chance to attend the TARGETjobs Law National Pupillage Fair on 5 November you can still catch up through the page dedicated to the videos and a summary of the advice and helpful hints from the day. It’s also useful if you want to review what you learned on the day in preparation for BPTC applications or pupillage interviews. The fair will return in 2017; keep an eye on the TARGETjobs Law homepage and follow our Twitter feed to keep up to date.

Vac scheme applications left

There are still some law firms open to vacation scheme applications until the end of February. To get a total overview of each firm, complete with links to their own employer-specific pages, take a peek at our big list of vacation scheme deadlines, but do check each law firm’s website to make sure before you apply.

Law Society Diversity Access Scheme

The Law Society is opening applications for its Diversity Access Scheme (DAS) from 6 February 2017. The scheme aims to increase diversity in the profession by providing support for those from disadvantaged backgrounds and those who face obstacles to entering the profession. The scheme offers financial assistance with LPC fees, access to work experience and a professional mentor.

Click the story headline or this link to visit the Law Society’s DAS page.

No island break for criminals

A High Court ruling has removed the protection that criminals may once have found in Northern Cyprus. The Turkish part of the Mediterranean island had become a refuge for those on the run from the law in the UK, confident that they would never be extradited. However, the new ruling means that those wanted for crimes in the UK may now be prosecuted in Northern Cyprus instead.

The judges ruled that there was nothing to prevent UK authorities from cooperating with their counterparts in Cyprus to bring a prosecution. The case was originally brought before the court to deal with Hasan Akarcay, a businessman suspected of involvement in a serious drugs crime and allegedly linked by fingerprint evidence to 12.5kg of heroin found in Bradford. Akarcay fled to Cyprus in 2006.

Click the story headline to read more from The Telegraph.

Pensions for partners

A woman in Northern Ireland has won a Supreme Court battle to continue receiving her former partner’s benefits after his death, even though they were unmarried. The ruling will change Northern Ireland’s public pensions scheme to bring it in line with the rest of the UK, and may offer cohabiting couples hope that similar situations may apply in areas such as the tax regime, according to The Guardian.

The five Supreme Court justices ruled unanimously in favour of Denise Brewster, who had been with partner Lenny McMullan for ten years. The couple were engaged at the end of 2009, but McMullan died in the early hours of Boxing Day that year.

Click the story headline to read more from The Guardian.

Of interest:

Itchy and scratchy

The Speaker for the Commons, John Bercow, has made two controversial statements this week. Not only has Bercow voiced opposition to the idea of President Donald Trump speaking to parliament (when many state leaders have spoken without comment), but he has now suggested that the Commons clerks be allowed to do away with the customary wigs because they find them ‘itchy’ and to make the house less ‘stuffy’. The clerks will still be required to wear robes to distinguish them from other members of the house.

The move was opposed by Jacob Rees-Mog, a conservative MP, who suggested that it was part of a ‘covert modernising agenda’. One of the house clerks pointed out that the wigs may be seen a quasi-judicial mark of authority, given their association with courtrooms and legal professionals.

Click the story headline to read more from The Telegraph.

For more updates and information, check out our Twitter feed @TjobsLaw.