Job roles in law

If you have an interest in getting in to law, have a look through the areas of legal practice we have listed below.

In many areas of law, there are job roles carried out by people who have not studied law at university, who work under the supervision of solicitors or Chartered Legal Executives.

Many of these roles may be a useful starting point if you are looking for employment to accompany the study element of the Chartered Legal Executive qualification.

You should also look at our apprenticeship hub for current vacancies.

Job roles in law firms

What’s involved?

The family department in a law firm works on a wide range of matters. Clients may be seeking advice on divorce, separation, have problems relating to domestic violence or be seeking access to their children. The work involves meeting clients to take detailed information on their situation, advising them on their options and helping them to achieve the best outcome.  It can be rewarding in that you provide solutions to people when they are in a difficult period in their lives. The work is very varied and examples of a good outcome include achieving the financial settlement that a client is entitled to on divorce through to obtaining restraining orders in the court against a violent ex-partner.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

This is an ideal area of work to get into without any prior legal qualifications. Although initial client interviews are usually led by qualified staff, a lot of the follow-up work  and collation of information can be drafted by assistants under supervision. See how Ellie Jones got into this area of law.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Family law paralegal, family law administrator. Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Family Practice). As well as an introductory unit you will study Family Law and the Practice of Family Law. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you aleady have a law degree, achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Family Practice, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree. If you have not studied family law as part of your law degree, we also recommend that you study this unit at either Level 3 or Level 6 too.

What have other students achieved?

Kristina Steele was a legal secretary and PA before starting her CILEx training. She is almost qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive and runs her own caseload.

This area of law is carried out by law firms throughout the country. It involves giving advice to individuals relating to dismissal, discrimination and redundancy and also to organisations about their obligations to employees. Employment law includes all matters to do with the workplace and applies to organisations of all sizes.

What’s involved?

Employment law covers the rights of both employees and employers.

Employees have rights in law to prevent discrimination due to age, disability, sex and religion. There are also laws relating to the circumstances when an employee can be dismissed or made redundant and rights to maternity, paternity and adoption leave. The employment department advises individuals on their rights and on seeking compensation when these have been breached by an employer. If a claim or potential claim arises, a law firm assists in negotiating a settlement and, where necessary, taking the case to an Employment Tribunal.

Law firms also advise employers on how to make sure that they are operating within the law on employment matters. Employers vary from small businesses employing one or two people to national organisations. Smaller-scale employees are most likely to seek advice on an ad hoc basis when issues arise. Larger organisations have Human Resources (HR) departments who ensure that they operate within the law, and HR managers seek advice on an ongoing basis relating to staff policies, directors’ contracts, team moves and takeovers as well as on specific matters when problems arise.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

As an unqualified member of staff you will assist in opening client files, taking statements and collating information. When a case goes to  Tribunal there is an administrative role in creating the claims using standard templates.

See how Catherine Miles developed a career in employment law

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Employment paralegal, employment law paralegal. Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Employment Practice). As well as an introductory unit you will study Employment Law and the Practice of Employment Law. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 The Practice of Employment Law, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree. If you have not studied Employment Law as part of your law degree, we also recommend that you study this unit at either Level 3 or Level 6 too.

What have other students achieved?

Catherine Miles developed an interest in law while working as a legal secretary and is now a Chartered Legal Executive specialising in employment law. She worked for a law firm initially while studying before moving to The Body Shop International.

This area of law relates to advising clients about how to prepare for the possibility of becoming mentally or physically incapacitated, and how to manage financial and other assets in advancing years. It is often referred to as private client work and is undertaken by law firms across the country, often in the same department that handles will-writing and probate activities.

What’s involved?

A lasting power of attorney (POA) gives a named person the authority to act for another person in legal or financial matters. It needs to be put in place while a person is still well enough to understand the implications of creating a POA.  People working in this area are therefore involved in working with elderly clients and planning for their future.

This also involves giving advice on the rules relating to care home funding and also on inheritance tax.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Although an initial consultation will usually be conducted by a qualified member of staff, POAs are created by completing standard forms and registering them with a government department called the Office of the Public Guardian, so there are often administrative jobs in this area.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Private client paralegal; private client legal administrator. Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Elderly Client Practice). As well as an introductory unit you will study the Law of Wills and Succession and the Practice of Law for the Elderly Client. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Probate Practice, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree. The Practice of Law for the Elderly Client is available as a CILEx Level 3 unit, which would not contribute to your GFTD but would be relevant to the practice area.

What have other students achieved?

Ann Deavall is a Chartered Legal Executive in the private client department of law firm, having started her CILEx studies when working as a legal secretary.

A will is the legal document that specifies how a person would like their property to be distributed on their death. Probate is the process of dealing with the estate of someone who has died. This work is done by the wills and probate departments of law firms throughout the country. It is also closely related to the section on advising elderly clients.

What’s involved?

Will-writing involves taking detailed instructions from clients about their family members, their assets and their intentions, and creating a  legal document that represents their wishes. Probate practice involves working with clients following the death of a relative. The client can also be an executor, which is someone appointed in a will to handle someone’s affairs on death.  When someone dies it is necessary to gather information on all the property, financial assets and personal belongings a person owned and then apply to the government for a grant of probate. Only once probate is granted and all tax due is paid can the property be distributed according to the wishes expressed in the will of the person who has died, or under the rules of intestacy if there is no will.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

There are a lot of opportunities to get into will-writing and probate work as an administrator or paralegal, since much of the tasks involves completing templates and writing standard letters, for example to banks and other financial institutions to gain valuations at death. The application for probate is also done on a standard form.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Will-writing paralegal, probate paralegal, probate administrator, wills and estates paralegal, wills and estates legal administrator.  Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Probate Practice). As well as an introductory unit you will study units in Wills and Succession and Probate Practice. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Probate Practice, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree. If you have not studied Wills and Succession as part of your degree, we recommend that you study this at Level 3 or Level 6 too.

What have other students achieved?

Susan Lynch started working as an unqualified legal assistant in the family department of her current firm and is now a Chartered Legal Executive.
Marie Townley worked as a receptionist and then a legal secretary before studying to become a Chartered Legal Executive.

This area of law is called conveyancing and is carried out by law firms throughout the country.

What’s involved?

The work involves taking details from clients and following the processes that need to be carried out to complete the sale or purchase of a property. For example if acting for a buyer, this involves carrying out searches on the property’s title in the Land Registry as well as local environmental searches, drafting a contract, liaising with the mortgage company to ensure the paperwork is in place for the money to be made available, drafting the application to the Land Registry and liaising throughout with the firm acting for the seller and with the client. The conveyancing department also acts for commercial developers on plot purchase at the beginning of a development project and subsequent house or flat sales once they are built.  Other standard work includes acting for clients wishing to increase or pay off their mortgage independently of a sale or purchase.

 What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

This is an ideal area of work to get into without any prior legal qualifications, as a lot of the work is very standardised, such as requesting searches, and the contract and title documents are based on standard templates. See how Natalie Ducket got into this area of law.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Conveyancing executive, conveyancing paralegal, property paralegal, domestic conveyancing executive, re-mortgaging paralegal, new build paralegal.  You could also apply for legal secretarial jobs in this area.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Conveyancing). As well as an introductory unit you will study Land Law and Conveyancing. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units. There are two types of property ownership in England and Wales: freehold and leasehold. The Conveyancing module covers Freehold, which is most typical. If you wish to develop further knowledge in this area you could study Residential and Commercial Leasehold Conveyancing.

If you have a qualifying law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Conveyancing, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

 What have other students achieved?

Lucy McDonald got a job in the conveyancing department of a law firm when she left school at 16 and has recently embarked on CILEx training.
Vidyha Panchal was a law graduate working as a conveyancing paralegal when she studied for the CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma.
Natalie Duckett started as an office junior after her GCSEs and is now a Chartered Legal Executive working in conveyancing.

Property disputes are governed by two different areas of law – land law and contract law. This section covers disputes relating to rights to property where the dispute is governed by land law. Those could include, for example, boundary disputes, arguments over the upkeep of a joint access road or a disagreement about an extension on one property blocking out the light from another. Property disputes based on building and construction work are based on contract law (see the contractual disputes section below).  Law firms throughout the country have property dispute resolution or property litigation departments covering both types of work.

 What’s involved?

This type of work is usually initiated where a problem has arisen with the owner of a neighbouring property. It is necessary to establish the facts and give advice based on the law relating to the matter in hand. Where a dispute cannot be resolved it is necessary to either raise or defend an action in court. This work involves collecting statements and evidence and ensuring that the case progresses through the process according to rules that are laid down for cases in the civil courts.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Non-qualified staff will work in support of a qualified principal who will delegate tasks including obtaining witness statements, collating evidence and any tasks to do with tracking the case’s progress through the court system.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Property litigation paralegal, but ensure that the job description relates to property matters rather than contractual matters, as the training requirements are different.  You could also apply for legal secretarial jobs in this area.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Conveyancing). As well as an introductory unit you will study Land Law and Conveyancing. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.  CILEx Level 3 courses in Civil Litigation would also be useful.

If you already have a qualifying law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Conveyancing, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

What have other students achieved?

Hayley Browne now works as a Chartered Legal Executive in property litigation, having joined Wilkin Chapman LLP as an office junior after completing her A levels.

This area of law is very wide-ranging and covers any possible dispute arising out of a breach of contract affecting both individuals and organisations. An individual may be seeking repayment of money for a car sold under warranty that turns out to be defective, or may wish to withhold payment from a builder about the quality of workmanship. An organisation may have a £ multimillion contractual dispute about the delay to a construction project. Law firms often have separate departments to cover different areas, for example construction litigation, property litigation and projects.

What’s involved?

Cases start by clients seeking advice where something has gone wrong and the first step is to gather all the information so that the client can be advised of the best way forward and try to achieve a successful outcome and settlement. Where a dispute cannot be resolved it is necessary to either raise or defend an action in court. This work involves collecting statements and evidence and ensuring that the case progresses through the process according to rules that are laid down for cases in the civil courts.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Non-qualified staff will work in support of a qualified principal who will delegate tasks including obtaining witness statements, collating evidence and any tasks to do with tracking the case’s progress through the court system.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Litigation paralegal, commercial litigation paralegal, property litigation paralegal, construction litigation paralegal, contentious paralegal.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Civil Litigation), selecting Contract as the law unit. You will study an introductory unit as well as Contract and Civil Litigation. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a qualifying law degree: achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Cilvil Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

What have other students achieved?

Hayley Gaffney works in Dispute Resolution with Coodes Solicitors, having started her working life as an office junior.

This area of law ensures that people who were injured through no fault of their own are adequately compensated. It covers everything from injury in a car accident to medical negligence and accidents at work. Personal injury work can involve EITHER acting for the person who has sustained the injury to get compensation OR for the insurance company against whom the claim is being made.

What’s involved?

Work involves collecting information on the facts of the case and also obtaining and reviewing medical evidence and calculating the value of the claim. If a case cannot be settled out of court it also involves ensuring that the case progresses through the court process according to the Civil Procedure Rules.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

This is a good area of law to get into if you don’t have any legal qualifications as there is a lot of low value work such as for whiplash claims, which are handled through completion templates which is often delegated to unqualified staff.

Find out how Charlie Bretherick ended up working in the Medical Protection Society’s claims team after studying a non-law subject at university.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Personal injury claims handler, personal injury case handler, personal injury paralegal, medical negligence paralegal, RTA (standing for Road Traffic Accident) claims handler, RTA case handler, RTA paralegal, industrial claims paralegal.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Civil Litigation), selecting Tort as the law unit. You will study an introductory unit as well as the Law of Tort and Civil Litigation. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a qualifying law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Civil Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

What have other students achieved?

James Spargo started studying for CILEx courses when he developed an interest in personal injury law and is now a Chartered Legal Executive with The Specter Partnership.

The work involves acting on behalf of clients to recover money that is owed. The debt can relate to anything from a tradesman not having been paid for services, through to payments due on large commercial contracts of any nature.

What’s involved?

There are many unpaid debts where there is no argument about whether the payment is due, but payment has not been made because the debtor does not have the means to pay. In these circumstances the lawyer acting for the person who is owed the money (the creditor) will bring an action through the courts to get an order for funds to be made available from other assets belonging to the debtor.

In other cases the debt may be disputed, such as a claim for payment for goods or services where there is a disagreement over whether the contract has been delivered or not. These cases are usually handled through the dispute resolution/commercial litigation departments.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

This is a good area of law to get into if you don’t have any legal qualifications. There is a lot of low value work such as for unpaid rent, which is often delegated to unqualified staff. You will create the documentation to raise a claim and ensure that it is followed through the court process in a timely fashion. See how Catherine Rickett got into this area of law.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Debt recovery claims handler, debt recovery paralegal, debt litigation paralegal.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Civil Litigation), selecting Contract as the law unit. You will study an introductory unit as well as Contract and Civil Litigation. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a qualifying law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Civil Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

 What have other students achieved?

Catherine Rickett heads the Debt Recovery Team at Roythornes Solicitors, having qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive.

This area of law relates to children being taken into care by local authorities and is carried out by legal practitioners who act on behalf of parents, grandparents or guardians.

Family law departments in law firms throughout the country handle this sort of work and it is separated out from other family law matters here since there is a specific CILEx unit covering this area of law.

What’s involved?

When social workers apply to the Family Court for a care order the parents or other carers seek advice from lawyers who specialise in child care proceedings. The work involves reviewing the application that has been made to the court, taking detailed information from clients and representing them in court to try to get the best outcome for the client. Decisions are taken at the initial hearing on whether an interim care or supervision order should be made, where the child should live until the final hearing and what level of contact there can be.

 What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Although initial client meetings and any representation in court will be led by qualified staff, a lot of the detailed written statements in support of a parent or grandparent’s claim can be delegated to unqualified staff.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Family law paralegal, family law administrator. Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Child Care Practice). As well as an introductory unit you will study Family Law and the Practice of Child Care Law. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units.

If you already have a qualifying law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Family Practice, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree. If you have not studied family law as part of your law degree, we also recommend that you study this unit at either Level 3 or Level 6 too.  The Practice of Child Care Law is available as a CILEx Level 3 unit, which would not contribute to your GFTD but would be relevant to the practice area.

What have other students achieved?

Kristina Steele was a secretary before studying to become a Chartered Legal Executive. She is a family law practitioner who has worked on child protection matters.

This area of law relates to defending anyone who has been charged with committing a crime, including everything from road traffic offences through to serious fraud, assault and murder.

What’s involved?

Criminal departments of law firms give advice to defendants on the criminal law including whether the charge is fair, if there are mitigating circumstances and what the penalty might be if the defendant is found to be guilty. The role varies greatly according to the nature of the charge, and more serious crimes are usually dealt with by specialist firms.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Paralegal roles involve tasks relating to building a defence, carrying out research and also general administrative tasks. Where cases are funded by Legal Aid there will also be administrative work relating to claiming for time spent. There have been cuts to funding for criminal litigation and you should be aware that jobs in this practice area can be hard to find.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Criminal law paralegal, criminal paralegal.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Criminal Litigation). As well as an introductory unit you will study Criminal Law and Criminal Litigation. Have a look at the tables of contents to see what is involved. You will also study two professional skills units. Studying this qualification gave Leanne Packham the confidence to apply for a job in the probation service.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Criminal Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

Job roles in other types of organisation

Many large organisations have their own in-house teams to advise on a range of legal matters. Working in-house for an organisation such as a utilities firm, travel company, broadcaster, government department, telecommunications firm or a retailer means that working for just one client (the employer), rather than many different ones. In-house legal advice covers areas as diverse as employment law, contract law, copyright law and property law, and legal teams will often have specialists in specific areas such as the law of contract and employment law.

What’s involved?

The work is very varied according to the nature of the organisation and so there is no typical role. For example a retailer with shops around the country will deal with a lot of property work, a broadcaster commissioning programmes will have contract specialists. Both organisations will have a large number of employees, so they also need employment specialists.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

In-house legal teams have roles within the specialist legal areas in the same way that law firms do, so the role and job title will be the same as described in the sections on property, contract and employment.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

In-house paralegal, in-house conveyancing paralegal, in-house contracts executive, in-house employment paralegal, in-house legal assistant. Applying for legal secretarial jobs is also a good route into this area of law.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

Anyone new to legal studies is advised to start with the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice. We recommend that you select either Civil Litigation with Contract or Employment Practice. Each Certificate includes an  introductory unit, a law unit and its related practice unit (eg Contract and Civil Litigation, Employment Law and the Practice of Employment Law) and two professional skills units.
If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying two Level 6 practice units of your choice as well as Level 6 Client Care Skills. Under CILEx rules, at least one unit must relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree, but we recommend that both do, or that you also study the accompanying law unit at Level 3 or Level 6.

What have other students achieved?

Simon Rowe left school with no A levels and now works in the legal department of a commercial company which develops flagship shopping destinations.
Catherine Miles works as an employment law specialist within the legal team for The Body Shop International plc.
Ella Lycett is a legal apprentice in the contracts department of the BBC.
Charlotte Burnham is working as a manager within the commercial contracts department of a construction and refrigeration company.

Local Councils need lawyers to advise staff across many departments including housing, child protection, property and human resources.

What’s involved?

Legal support staff will usually be assigned to a lawyer who works closely with a particular department and so, although the work of a council’s in-house team is varied, an individual’s role could relate purely to child protection, property, debt collection, housing or employment matters. Please refer to the sections on the area that interests you most.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

There are paralegal roles in all the main areas of legal practice, as indicated in the relevant sections on this page. CILEx Law School works with more than 40 local councils to offer legal apprenticeships so please also refer to our apprenticeship vacancies page to look out for opportunities in your area.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Legal assistant, legal services officer, legal officer, paralegal, law clerk, employment paralegal, contracts paralegal, housing paralegal, property paralegal, conveyancing paralegal, conveyancing executive. You could also apply for legal secretarial jobs in this area.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

Anyone new to legal studies is advised to start with the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice. We recommend that you select either Civil Litigation (with Contract as the law unit), Conveyancing, the Practice of Child Care Law or Employment Practice. Each Certificate includes an  introductory unit, a law unit and its related practice unit (eg Contract and Civil Litigation, Employment Law and the Practice of Employment Law) and two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying two Level 6 practice units of your choice as well as Level 6 Client Care Skills. Under CILEx rules, at least one unit must relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree, but we recommend that both do, or that you also study the related law unit.

What have other students achieved?

Have a look at the case studies of our current and former students:
Claire Hughes left school at 16 and is now a legal team leader at Forest of Dean District Council.
Paula Dalton is a Property and Development Team Leader at Staffordshire County Council having started her working life as a law clerk.
Mair Young also works in the legal department at Staffordshire County Council, having studied the CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma after a law degree.
Adrian Schwab works for Buckinghamshire County Council, having qualified as a Chartered Legal Executive after a career change.
Danielle Harris and Laura Croft are apprentices with Isle of Wight Council. Danielle works in civil litigation and Laura in property and planning.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is a government body responsible for prosecuting people for crimes committed in England and Wales. The CPS employs caseworkers to build prosecution files.

What’s involved?

Before prosecuting anyone for a crime, the CPS needs to have sufficient evidence in place to convince a judge or jury, beyond reasonable doubt, that the defendant has committed the offence. Caseworkers are responsible for gathering evidence, liaising with witnesses and helping to put cases together under supervision.

What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

Most CPS caseworkers are not legally qualified. The CPS offers paralegal apprenticeships for those looking to enter the profession, while there are also jobs such as casework assistants and administrative officers.

What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Caseworker, casework assistant, administrative officer, apprentice casework officer.

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We have a special distance learning course for CPS caseworkers, the Certificate in Criminal Prosecution, which was developed for the CPS and is only available to CPS employees.  We recommend that you ask your supervisor about this if you are already a CPS employee working in case-building. We also have a CPS apprenticeship programme, which incorporates relevant training, and so please keep an eye on our vacancies page.  If you are not yet employed in the criminal justice sector and wish to demonstrate your interest in this area we recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Criminal Litigation). As well as an introductory unit you will study Criminal Law, Criminal Litigation and two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Criminal Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

Police forces throughout England and Wales employ file builders to put together case for passing to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

 What’s involved?

Caseworkers are responsible for creating and maintaining police files on individual cases according to specified timescales and procedures.

 What jobs are there for non-qualified staff?

There are entry-level roles available which seek administrative and organisational skills. [suggest contacting Paul Oakley, a caseworker with South Wales and Gwent Police who has completed L3 and most of L6 with CLS]

 What job titles will be advertised by recruitment agencies?

Caseworker, case builder, police administrator

What CILEx units will support my application for these job roles?

We have a special distance learning course for police caseworkers, the Certificate in Criminal Justice Administration which was developed for police forces and is only available to those already employed.  We recommend that you ask your supervisor about this if you are already a police employee working in case-building. If you are not yet employed in the criminal justice sector and wish to demonstrate your interest in this area,  we recommend that you enrol on courses leading to the CILEx Level 3 Certificate in Law and Practice (Criminal Litigation). As well as an introductory unit you will study Criminal Law, Criminal Litigation and two professional skills units.

If you already have a law degree, you can achieve your CILEx Graduate Fast-track Diploma by studying Level 6 Criminal Litigation, Level 6 Client Care Skills and one other CILEx Level 6 practice unit of your choice, which we recommend should relate to a law unit studied as part of your degree.

 

Not-for-profit organisations often have roles for unqualified legal staff. The type of work will depend on the nature of the charity or welfare organisation:
For welfare organisations dealing with the elderly please refer to the section on advising elderly clients
For charitable organisations dealing with family matters please refer to the sections on family matters and childcare proceedings
For charitable organisations dealing with animal cruelty please refer to the sections on criminal prosecution

What have other students achieved?

Charlie Bretherwick works for the Medical Protection Society, a not-for-profit organisation that defends medical practitioners from negligence claims. She started as an administrator and is close to qualifying as a Chartered Legal Executive.