Solicitor Apprenticeship

What I like about the apprenticeship is that it provides flexibility, which is extremely valuable to me as it allows me to work full time whilst also completing my studies.

Bethan Jones, Apprentice Paralegal

Our Solicitor Apprenticeship lets you train to become a solicitor and get valuable experience at a top UK law firm – all while earning a salary. You’ll be fully qualified at the end of six years with a real head start on a legal career.

During the apprenticeship, you’ll get a mix of practical, work-based learning and formal academic study. You’ll gain valuable, real-life experience in the UK’s largest full service law firm, enhancing your legal and commercial understanding and growing your confidence in a work environment.

It’s the ideal opportunity to benefit from an exciting new world of work and study while avoiding the costs usually associated with doing a degree.

This year, we have opportunities within our Public Law and Human Rights team in Newcastle and Southampton and also within our Serious Injury team at our London office.

You’ll earn a starting salary of £18,018, or £20,111 if you’re in London, and get a range of employee benefits too.

Your salary will also increase as you progress through the programme. You’ll earn a trainee solicitor salary in your last two years and a Newly Qualified Solicitor salary once you qualify.

Who’s It For?

We’re looking for people who can adapt to this programme as well as the constant changes across the legal, social and political spheres. We need creative thinkers who can revolutionise the way we work and help Irwin Mitchell meet its future business needs.       

As well as strong academics and a genuine passion for law, we’re looking for someone who embodies our values. That means making a positive difference to both society and the legal sector.

You’ll need excellent communication skills, a good eye for detail, the ability to follow instructions, and to enjoy working as part of a team.

Due to the type of cases you’ll work on, you’ll also need to be empathetic and compassionate to help our clients through challenging personal circumstances.

What Will I Study?

Our training provider for this programme is The University of Law. They’ll provide all your academic training throughout the apprenticeship and guide and assist you through the training and assessments.

You’ll spend most of your time getting  hands-on involvement with real legal work, with dedicated time set aside each week for your studies. You’ll also have the possibility of working with different Irwin Mitchell teams to experience different areas of law.

We’ll tailor the programme to your individual needs and goals and you’ll take on more responsibility as you progress. You’ll also have a dedicated supervisor for daily training and feedback as well as a senior solicitor as your mentor.

Your training will cover:

  • Year 1 - Common Law Method and Ethics, Public Law, and Law of Contract
  • Year 2 - Law of Tort, Criminal Law, and Critical Approaches in Current Legal Issues
  • Year 3 - Land Law, Real Estate, and Business Law 1
  • Year 4 - Equity and Trusts, Access to Justice and Legal Services, Criminal Litigation and Evidence, and Civil Dispute Resolution
  • Year 5 - Business Law 2, Wills and Succession, and assessment preparation
  • Year 6 – Assessment preparation

What Qualification Will I Get?

At the end of your apprenticeship, you’ll need to pass the SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority) centralised assessment, which comes in two parts:

  • Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQA) Part 1: Functioning Knowledge Tests
  • Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQA) Part 2: Standardised Practical Legal Skills Assessments.

Once you pass these exams, you’ll be a fully qualified solicitor with an LLB (Hons) in Legal Practice.

What Are The Entry Requirements?


You’ll need the following by July 2022:

  • Three A-levels or equivalent at grade CCC or higher (excluding General Studies)
  • Five GCSEs at Grade A*-C or equivalent (including English and Mathematics).

This apprenticeship is part of our commitment to being an inclusive employer and giving opportunities to a diverse range of candidates. As such, our solicitor apprenticeship is not open to people with degrees.

If you do have a degree and are interested in becoming a solicitor, see our Graduate Recruitment site for more opportunities.

What Can I Do After My Apprenticeship?

Once you qualify, you’ll be able to continue your career at Irwin Mitchell as a Newly Qualified Solicitor, at the full salary for that role. From there, you’ll be able to develop your career with us and potentially work towards promotion as an Associate.

As a fully qualified solicitor, there will also be many opportunities for you elsewhere within the legal sector if you do choose to move on.

How To Apply

Applications for apprenticeships starting September 2022 will open from 7th March and close on 31st March.

There’s then a three-stage assessment:

  1. Online Assessment - We’ll then invite you to complete a virtual strengths-based assessment. This will take about 90 minutes to two hours. You’ll get a feedback report outlining what we think are your key strengths.
  2. Video Interview - We'll then invite candidates that meet our benchmark in the online assessment to complete a strengths-based video interview.
  3. Virtual Assessment Centre - If successful at the video interview stage, we’ll invite you to attend one of our virtual assessment centres in June and July 2022.

Applications for 2022 apprenticeships are now closed. Sign up to our mailing list if you're interested in future apprenticeship opportunities.

Awards & Accreditations

We're proud to have our hard work recognised by leading industry organisations, both as a law firm and as an employer.