Ingemar has been acting as an External Confirming Solicitor since the summer of 2020. He has spoken to hundreds of Aspiring Solicitors. These are some tips from his experience to help Aspiring Solicitors on their journey to qualify as a solicitor in the England & Wales jurisdiction.
- Discuss it in good time with the Confirming Solicitor: you will be asking this solicitor to confirm you QWE to the SRA. It is best that they are aware in good time and have agreed to this. If they are your supervisor, then that should be a pretty straightforward process, as they will have seen your work. If they are not, then they will have to do a bit more – review your work and obtain feedback from your supervisor. You may want to use the SRA’s suggested QWE Review Form and so be collating examples of the work you have done that allows you to gain the competencies listed by the SRA and earmarking the evidence of them to show the confirming solicitor.
- If leaving an organisation – get your QWE confirmed before you leave: it is much easier to have someone confirm your QWE whilst you are still in the organisation. You will have access to the work done to show as evidence to the confirming solicitor. The organisation much more likely to be co-operative while you’re there.
- Gather Evidence in support: if you will need someone other than your supervisor to confirm your QWE, they will need to see evidence your work which you have used as examples which allowed you to gain the competencies listed by the SRA. If you gather them as you go along it will make life easier for you when it comes to completing the SRA’s suggested QWE Review Form or whatever other firm or the confirming solicitor might use.
- Use the SRA QWE Review Form as you PDP: if you are in a law firm doing your QWE, or even if in some other organisation, you could use the form and the list of competencies in it as a personal development plan during the time whilst working to get your QWE. After all – these are the soft skills and business skills the SRA says it would expect a qualified solicitor to have.
- Check if work would be QWE: when you are contemplating a new job, think if what you do will constitute QWE. If it is a law firm, then it is most likely to do so, and you can ask at the interview if they would be willing to confirm your QWE. If it is some other organisation, then check. You will then, anyway, be needing the services of a solicitor outside the organisation to confirm your QWE. Find someone and ask them. The SRA has given no definition of what constitutes ‘provision of legal services’, so that is up to the judgment of the confirming solicitor. So, it is a good idea to find someone to do this and check with them – to avoid any nasty shock 2 years or so down the line!
Should you have more questions then please feel free to contact us and arrange a free, no obligation zoom with Ingemar Hunnings.
Listen to this in a podcast: https://anchor.fm/ingemar9/episodes/QWE---5-Top-Tips-e1dqcov
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External Solicitor Confirmation Service:
Please find a link here for more info: https://www.hunningsconsultancy.co.uk/external-qwe-certification-service-2/
What is QWE?
Please find a link to a brief podcast: https://anchor.fm/ingemar9/episodes/What-is-QWE--Part-of-the-SQE-route-to-qualifying-as-an-English-Solicitor-e1dllkp
How to Register your QWE with the SRA
Please find below a brief podcast: https://anchor.fm/ingemar9/episodes/How-to-register-your-QWE-with-the-SRA-SQE-route-e1dpjk3