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Can you work as a solicitor if you have a criminal record?

Solicitors are required to undergo a CRB check, and if you have a criminal record you may find it difficult to be accepted into the law firm of your choice even if you have a three year law degree, a year at law school and a two year training contract. The law profession is generally strict at monitoring and regulating solicitors and barristers, and with so much competition among trainee solicitors to land a job, you may be passed over for someone whose CRB check draws a blank.

The trainee solicitor first completes a two year training contract of contact work within a law firm, then they petition The Law Society to become a solicitor and it is then that the trainee solicitor must undergo a CRB check.

Solicitors are subject to Standard CRB checks in accordance with regulations laid down by The Law Society guidelines. The Standard CRB check for solicitors will uncover any cautions, reprimands, warnings and spent or unspent convictions on the part of the potential employee.

Whether or not a trainee solicitor can fully qualify is mainly dependent on The Law Society guidelines and the law firm involved. Failure to disclose any convictions will have a detrimental effect but the Standard CRB check will disclose this information regardless.

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