Solicitors advise clients about different aspects of the law.

What does a solicitor do?

Solicitors advise clients about different aspects of the law. You may be dealing with property purchases, wills, divorces, or civil or criminal proceedings. You could work as a solicitor in a range of places:

  • private practice – providing legal services such as conveyancing, probate, civil and family law, litigation, personal injury and criminal law
  • commercial practice – advising and acting for businesses in areas including contract law, tax, employment law and company sales and mergers
  • in-house legal advice - for companies, the government or local authorities
  • Crown Prosecution Service – examining evidence to decide whether to bring cases to court

Wherever you work, you’re likely to be dealing with a range of clients so good people skills are essential. You’ll also need to be able to explain complex areas of law in a simple, easy-to-understand manner. 

What do I need to do to become a solicitor?

  • complete a qualifying law degree, followed by the Legal Practice Course (LPC)
  • complete a non-law degree then take the Common Professional Examination (CPE) or Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) conversion course, followed by the LPC
  • complete the membership or fellowship route of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) while working in the legal profession – this route can be taken if you do not have a degree

Related skills

  • Attention to detail
  • Business management
  • Communication
  • Interpersonal skills
  • IT
  • Leadership
  • Literacy
  • Organisation
  • Problem solving

Related subjects

  • English
  • Foreign languages
  • History

Essential qualifications

  • Undergraduate law degree and the LPC
  • Or CPE or GDL course and the LPC
  • Or complete exams leading to membership of CILEx

Desirable qualifications

  • A level English
  • A level history
  • A level law

Where to find out more

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

Related jobs

Job families