By DebbieH 20 Dec 2018 7 min read

Graduate jobs in law

Graduate legal jobs are the next step on the path to becoming a successful lawyer after university. A graduate legal job, or law traineeship, introduces you to your law specialism and gives you the essential experience required to progress further in your career.

In an ideal world, trainee lawyers are given early responsibility balanced with an open door policy for advice and guidance from experienced supervisors. Often the training contract structure ensures maximum exposure to all areas of the firm’s work. It’s likely that you will come into contact with many different clients and get involved in a wide variety of work. Although you will be supervised and mentored by a more senior solicitor, you will still have your own clients and will be a fee earner.

Generally, a strong legal practice will have a range of lawyers, each with their own specialism. Graduate vacancies or traineeships give you the chance to start learning your specialism. Your education will continue throughout your career as your depth of skills and reputation within a given field will affect your legal career progression and earnings potential.

Typically the leading law firms accept applications from penultimate year law students, final year law and non-law students, recent graduates and candidates looking for a career change. Successful candidates tend to be those who are motivated and hardworking, with a high degree of commercial acumen alongside a genuine enthusiasm for the law.

You can search for graduate law jobs here on Simply Law Jobs. Generally, the starting salary for a graduate law job will be between £18k and £22k pa. With hard work and good results however, the career prospects in legal jobs are open ended and those at the top of the tree easily take home over £100k pa.


  • These jobs in law require a law degree (or an alternative degree and a Graduate Diploma in Law) as well as completion of a one year legal practice course (LPC) and two years paid training in a solicitor’s firm. These law graduate jobs are suitable for people who enjoy working in teams and working on complex problems and legal deals.
  • Solicitor jobs in law take a much more behind the scenes role than barristers and it is the job of the solicitor to advise barristers and liaise between them and the client.
  • Like most law jobs, the hours required to work can be long and varied but there are excellent opportunities for career development and pay rises.

Read our full Solicitor job description for more information.


  • These jobs require a relevant degree, followed by a one year Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC), followed by a one year pupillage with a qualified barrister (often on minimum wage). After which the range of wages for these law jobs is huge (a Queen’s Council can earn over £1m per year).
  • Rather than the methodical, complex approach of solicitors, barrister law jobs rely on excellent public speaking and quick thinking to argue the case.
  • Barristers, like a lot of other law jobs, tend to specialise in a particular area of the law. Barristers are often self employed, therefore a steady salary is dependent on the individual and they have to pay their own pension, tax/NI etc.

Read our full Barrister job description for more information.

You can search for a wide range of graduate jobs here on Simply Law Jobs.


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