Use the Contact Form below to request a free zoom to talk through your questions.
From September 2021 people wanting to qualify as a solicitor will need to do so through the SQE (Solicitors Qualifying Exam). Click here for a link for more information.
** One of our Aspiring Solicitor clients is believed to be the first person ever to have submitted and had approved their QWE by the SRA. April 2021 **
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) requires any Aspiring Solicitor who takes the SQE assessments (with the exception of foreign qualified lawyers) to complete two years full time equivalent of QWE (Qualifying Work Experience) before they can apply for admission.
For the Aspiring Solicitor's QWE to count, it needs to have been ‘confirmed’ by a Solicitor or a COLP. The Confirming Solicitor needs to be regulated by the SRA (currently on their roll; they do not need to have a current practising certificate).
The Confirming Solicitor needs to have seen the work. The SRA has produced a form which the Aspiring Solicitor can complete to assist in the review process (we call it the 'QWE Review Form). The form requires the Aspiring Solicitor to give examples of work done to show that they have had the opportunity to gain the competences required by the SRA and to state what evidence of it they will show the Confirming Solicitor.
Where the Aspiring Solicitor does not have someone in their organisation who is able and willing to act as their Confirming Solicitor, the Aspiring Solicitor may seek external assistance from a solicitor regulated by the SRA. As well as seeing the work, an external confirming solicitor also must gather feedback from the supervisor of the Aspiring Solicitor.
We offer to provide a remote QWE review & confirmation service through our principal consultant, Ingemar Hunnings, SRA No. 156976 –
Ingemar Hunnings has been closely liaising with the SRA following which he has developed a service to help Aspiring Solicitors who do not have someone already to confirm their QWE to the SRA. Ingemar has been helping Aspiring Solicitors in this role since September 2020. One of his Aspiring Solicitors is believed to be the first person ever to have submitted and had approved their QWE for approval by the SRA. He has successfully confirmed the QWE of several Aspiring Solicitors and is now helping a number of firms by acting as the Confirming solicitor for them for their Aspiring Solicitors.
£200/hr (+ VAT if applicable)
(We are willing to cap our fees at £800 - per Aspiring Solicitor - to be raised only by mutual agreement. Where the QWE is likely to reviewed over more than occasion over a period of time, payment will normally be made after each review meeting.)
Why Would an Employer Choose To Do This?
We work with some companies which do not have solicitors in their organisation and rely upon recruiting paralegals who stay with them until qualification. Retaining good staff is always a challenge. Aspiring Solicitors are looking for ways to gather their QWE. The work you will be asking them to do may be eligible to count as QWE. If you offer to organise and indeed pay for, the review and confirmation of their QWE this is likely to be an incentive for the Aspiring Solicitors to stay with you - at least until they have obtained confirmation of their 2 years full time equivalent QWE. So we may be providing a service that helps you retain them in the business.
You may add additional incentive if you put them on the Apprenticeship Scheme as a graduate apprentice. Click here for a link for more information. This would mean that 95% of their SQE training and exam fees would be paid by the government's apprenticeship scheme (you would have to pay the other 5%, perhaps up to £1,000 over the years). This is a huge benefit to the Aspiring Solicitor and therefore a strong incentive for them to stay the course with you.
Currently the QWE confirmation work is carried out by Ingemar Hunnings, our lead consultant, who is a solicitor qualified in England & Wales in 1992. Here is a link to his details with the SRA: https://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/register/person/?sraNumber=156976
Contact us: Ingemar: 07887 524507 or [email protected]
The Process of Confirming QWE
How does this service work:
Link to a video: https://youtu.be/p9r7re-PZgc
1. We will first organise a free no-obligations Zoom call with the firm (and Aspiring Solicitor should you wish) to talk through the process and our charges. If it turns out there is a better option for the Aspiring Solicitor, we will advise you to take that instead of instructing us (eg. there is someone in their organisation who could fulfil the role of Confirming Solicitor at no cost to the Aspiring Solicitor).
2. If the firm and Aspiring Solicitor wishes to proceed, we will send out a Contract. The Contract covers standard terms of trading and contains a Confidentiality Agreement. If the firm wishes, we will sign an NDA, either theirs or ours - which ever they prefer. An Order will be sent out for the work to be done for each Aspiring Solicitor concerned. This scopes the job.
3. After the Contact, Order and any NDA are signed, we will share with you the QWE Review Form for the Aspiring Solicitor to complete with examples of the work done against the SRA competencies. It is advisable that a brief zoom is conducted with the Aspiring Solicitor to give them guidance on how to complete this. Once completed, the Aspiring Solicitor should email it to us to review. If the form seems to have enough detail, we will schedule a Zoom call to review this together with the evidence they have in support.
4. In the Zoom call we will go through with the Aspiring Solicitor their completed QWE Review Form. During the session the Aspiring Solicitor can show Ingemar the evidence, by sharing their screen, that they have in support of their work examples meeting the SRA competencies. We do not want this evidence sent to us to be held on our machines - for data protection reasons.
5. Once we are is satisfied with the evidence presented, we will sign the QWE Review Form and send through a signed copy to the Aspiring Solicitor. This is the Aspiring Solicitor’s evidence should the SRA do a spot check. It may be that the Aspiring Solicitor does not already have two years QWE to be signed off at the time of the Zoom call. You can agree with us when the remainder of the QWE can be reviewed in another zoom session and signed off.
6. In addition, the SRA require that we obtain feedback from the Aspiring Solicitor's supervisor. We will therefore need to organise a Zoom or phone call with the Aspiring Solicitor’s supervisor for a discussion about their work and conduct. We will write up the notes and send them to the supervisor for approval, signature and return. We will then sign the notes and send the signed copy to the Aspiring Solicitor to hold as their evidence for the SRA. This should complete the SRA’s requirements for the QWE.
7. The Aspiring Solicitor will make a request through their MySRA profile with the SRA. (Here’s a link to guidance the SRA has given on how to do this.) The SRA will then contact Ingemar to separately to ask him to confirm he has reviewed the work and has 'received feedback from the person(s) supervising their work'. Once the SRA receive that confirmation from Ingemar they will inform the Aspiring Solicitor that it is accepted as their QWE.
Ingemar: 07887 524507 or [email protected]
This is what one client has written on a Google My Business Review about this service:
"We have the benefit of Mr Ingemar Hunnings (of HCL) to carry out regular detailed reviews of the work as the external QWE monitor under the SQE regime. It is of significant importance to find a capable, professional and knowledgeable Solicitor who has been also a practising Law Firm Partner to help with this detailed task. Detailed reviews on a regular basis also provide guidance on points that are discussed within the review. It is not often that one comes across a Solicitor like Mr Hunnings."