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Routes into Law: Paralegal

In my early teens I was intrigued by drama of the courtroom. I wanted to stand in a room full of people, and argue for justice on behalf of my client. Then I read the polemic of Iain Morley QC 'The Devil’s Advocate’ and this book confirmed for me that I wanted to pursue a career in law. At the age of 16 I was lucky enough to gain work experience at a small firm in my local town in Ireland. During this experience, I learnt the difference between a solicitor and a barrister. I quickly realised a wig and gown was not for me, and the solicitor route was more suited. I wanted to be the first point of contact for a client, and I wanted to be there from the start of the client’s legal journey, until the end. Following on from my work experience, I began to sign up for every work experience opportunity that I could find. Each time I attended Court, I always thought ‘I can’t wait to do this someday’. I am glad to say that several years later, I still get the same feeling. I faced my first hurdle on my journey into law when moving away from home. A took a leap of faith and decided to accept an offer at LJMU. This was once of the best decisions I ever made. I didn’t expect to move away from home at 18, never mind moving across the water to England. At the time Liverpool seemed one million miles away from home, but now it is my second home. I graduated from Law with a 2:1, and the following September I decided to enrol in the LPC/LLM programme at LJMU. The LPC was one of the hardest years of my academic life. However, it was also one of the greatest. The programme forces you to think like a solicitor, to step outside your comfort zone, and to bounce ideas off other classmates. I found the LPC really enjoyable, and I also made friends for life, which is always a bonus! I completed the LPC on a full-time basis. Stage 1 was intense, and the cohort was really looking forward to Stage 2, in the hope it would be less stressful. Soon after our first seminar of Stage 2, the country went into lockdown and I made the decision to move back to Ireland to be with my family. I managed to obtain a distinction in both my LPC and LLM, and my advice to anyone considering the LPC would be to engage, engage, engage. The more effort you put into the course, the more you will take from it. I completed Stage 2 in June 2020 and finished my Masters dissertation in September 2020. Upon completion of my dissertation I obtained a role in a law firm in Derry, Northern Ireland. I was lucky enough to gain a wealth of experience in this firm and I had great mentors. The advice and guidance I gained in this role will stay with me for the rest of my career. However, I knew I wanted to move back to Liverpool and work for MSB, as I had been watching the firm’s growth over the years, especially in their family department. I interviewed for a job with MSB in September 2021 and moved back to Liverpool to start my role in October 2021. MSB have been nothing short of incredible in every sense of the word, it is truly a fantastic firm to work for. Over the past 6 months I have learnt so much, and I have been given so many opportunities. Not only progress my understanding of the law, but to get involved in the community and other organisations. If you are considering a career in law, grasp every opportunity presented to you. A career in law has such a wide variety of paths, and each experience will give you a different perspective and hopefully help you decide which path is best suited to you.

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