Solicitors are lawyers who are practicing their profession in all fields of law such as criminal justice, civil cases, or corporate litigations. They are also called attorneys, litigators, and legal aids depending on the gravity of the case that they handle. Oftentimes, the term solicitor is quite confusing and it differs in its political meaning depending on the country of origin. To make things clearer, below are some of the core responsibilities of a UK solicitor.
General Legal Advisor
A UK solicitor offers a wide range of legal services just like any other professional practicing law. Their practice depends on the size and expertise of the law firm to which they belong. Usually, a UK solicitor handles cases on family and marriage, tenancy law, and litigation claims for personal injuries. After the acceptance of a case, the UK solicitor is responsible for analyzing the facts of the case, extensively investigating and studying police and authority reports. He also scrutinizes medical reports and other important documents involved including statements from witnesses, experts, victims, and the accused. When outside of court hearings, it is his responsibility to review documents that are pertinent to legal proceedings.
A UK solicitor also acts as a legal aid for clients who are financially incapable of paying for attorney’s fees. Public lawyers are part of the advocacy to represent less fortunate people in their legal claims. However, UK lawyers who are in private practice have their own jurisdiction of the extent of their legal aids. This could be on the consultation and referral part only depending on the gravity of the case. On the other hand, lawyers practicing in behalf of a law firm might not be able to act as legal aid for certain clients without the approval of their management. Here, business is more important than civic works. However, some law firms are also advocates of pro bono cases.
When they are not inside a court attending hearings, UK solicitors also accomplish administrative duties such as computing for legal fees, submitting reports of their cases, communicating with clients, and dealing with disputes. Although law firms have their paralegals to assist with their administrative tasks, an efficient work done by the UK lawyers is tantamount to overseeing everything from the smallest to the biggest detail.
There are a lot of job opportunities available for aspiring UK solicitors. However, because the UK law is strict and complex, only the smartest and the brightest of the applicants get into the service. If you are intending to become one of these lawyers, you must first comply with the minimum education requirements set by the government. You must have completed a Graduate Diploma in Law from any nationwide accredited universities or colleges. In lieu of that, you must be able to pass the Common Professional Examination which is required for any professional to obtain their license. To finally complete your legal eligibility, you must undergo the Legal Practice Course wherein you are required to settle at least two minimum years of practice in a law firm.