The UK has an exceptional reputation for legal excellence across the globe. In fact, many legal systems and courts still refer to UK law for guidance. However, if you are considering taking a law course in the UK, it is essential to understand the different types of courses on offer, and how they might affect your future career options.
In order to be able to make legal decisions and judgements, it is necessary to get qualified first. Where you learn, and the legal systems that you study will affect where you can practice law in the future. This is because the UK has a number of distinct legal systems.
Law courses in UK
If you wish to practice law in Scotland, you must complete a Scots Law LLB, followed by the Diploma in Professional Legal Practice (Dip.LP). On the other hand, if you wish to practice law in England & Wales, you can complete any undergraduate degree, but if you do not complete a qualifying law degree, you must undertake further study. It is currently common for UK institutions to teach EU law as part of any law degree or course, but it is currently unclear how Brexit will affect this.
In the UK, the usual route to becoming a qualified solicitor, barrister, or advocate in any jurisdiction is first to complete a full-time law degree (LLB). At present, this is a requirement in Scotland. Although there are many law courses and degrees offered across Scotland, not all of them will be a qualifying LLB. You should ensure that where you wish to practice law in Scotland, your course meets the requirements set by The Law Society of Scotland. In England and Wales, if you have completed another degree, you may complete the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) in order to practice law.
Many of the most prestigious universities in England, Wales and Scotland, offer accelerated LLB law degrees to graduates from other disciplines. This can be an excellent option if you are looking for a career change, or if you didn’t meet the initial requirements for admittance to an LLB degree at the university of your choice.
As you can see, careful consideration is required when choosing a law course in the UK in order to become a qualified solicitor, barrister or advocate.