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dilemma

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Everything posted by dilemma

  1. You can search for past papers on the UBC website for most courses that you've mentioned (with the exception of foundations). While there are no sample answers, you can use them as practice questions.
  2. Agreed. According to the TRU website, there are three Australian partner universities for law. Or better yet, take a trip to Australia after finishing law school (or for summer vacation).
  3. According to McGill's website (https://www.mcgill.ca/gradapplicants/international/apply/equivalency), they generally calculate the average according to your overall standing. I think the law faculty may consider your percentile, provided that they use the same method as graduate studies. You shouldn't worry too much about it.
  4. According to the GPLLM website, there are 88 students for the Class of 2019. https://gpllm.law.utoronto.ca/sites/default/files/media/UTLaw-Infographic-Class-v1-2019.pdf
  5. 1. Is it any easier to secure an articling position in Canada if I obtain an LLM from a Canadian University? It could be easier to secure an articling position with an LLM, but it is by no means an easy task. It mainly depends on how willing you are in reaching out to other lawyers and using the resources available at your university to secure a position. Note that there are a lot of low-paying and unpaid articling positions, so getting one isn't as difficult as you may think. However, getting a paid position will require effort on your part. 2. How do U.K law firms view Canadians who decide to to stay and practice law in the U.K. following their degree? Is there a similar stigma, do they not care at all? From what I've heard, law firm recruiters tend to view favourably upon Canadian graduates, since they are more mature than their fellow coursemates (and generally with more work experience). This can work to your advantage, but it is difficult to secure a training contract as an international student. Since you have dual citizenship, this wouldn't be a problem for you. I don't think there is any similar stigma in the UK, given that there are a fair share of UK-educated Canadian lawyers working in London. As long as you have excellent grades, pass the initial assessment tests and interviews, and fulfill their requirements, you have a decent shot at the Magic Circle firms and other international firms. 3. Given I have dual citizenship, should I stay in the UK or try my luck in Canada after an LLM? I think you still have time to decide on this until your final year. It's too early to decide which path you want to take. However, I think it's more beneficial for you to stay in the UK, given your status and the potential stigma that you may get if you return to Canada. If you end up getting a training contract, you are better off staying in the UK. Coming back to Canada should be a backup option.
  6. You actually don't get your money back if you already secured an articling position and are making the switch. The amount for the LPP and the articling program are the same, so no changes will be made, as long as you switch before the deadline (end of August for the Ryerson LPP; not sure for the uOttawa LPP). The candidate will only get back 50% of the fees if they leave after the first two weeks of the program. After four weeks, there is no refund whatsoever. I suppose the actual refund comes if the candidate decides to withdraw from the licensing process altogether.
  7. You really need to think hard. While there are still articling positions available, your choices are extremely limited (unless you widen the scope of your practice area and geographical area), since you have passed the deadlines for a good chunk of them. Honestly, at this point, you are better off either sticking with the LPP or defer your articling search until later in the year. I do know that a number of articling positions show up after August, but that would be a risky move if you don't know what you are looking for. Generally speaking, the current articling positions available, should you search now, will likely be unpaid or paid at an extremely low salary. If you don't have much financial obligations, you can go ahead with the articling position if it is your preferred practice area. Otherwise, you might as well stick with the LPP. Based on what I've heard, around 70% of the LPP placements are paid. I heard that the chance of being hired back is pretty low after completing the LPP. Many of them ended up working as sole practitioners, with a small proportion staying at the firms they were placed at. You still have until the end of August to decide whether you want to stay in the LPP or defer your articling search. I believe the interviews for LPP work placements have not started yet (I think the first round of interviews starts in July), but I do agree that it's unlikely that the OP can back out once the employer accepted them for the placement. Not only would it look bad for the OP, it would also ruin the reputation of the program, and I don't think the coordinators would risk that.
  8. I don't think it's impossible to build a career in law per se, but it will be an extremely steep hill to climb up. Even with your GPA, it will be difficult to gain entry into the two-year program offered by many UK universities. You will most likely be offered the 3-year program option, which would require a greater financial investment on your part. If you are willing to put in the effort to study hard and do well on your exams, it shouldn't be too big of a problem, at least up until the point where you are assessed by the NCA. If you do end up doing the 3-year program, you will generally be allocated 5 challenge exams, provided that your grades are better than 45% and your overall classification is greater than 2:2. If you aren't too fussy about going into Bay Street, I think you still have a decent chance of getting an articling position. I can't speak for most firms, but some small firms and solo practitioners look for candidates that are interested in their practice area and focus less on your undergrad results. In some cases, they don't even require them. Provided that you do well in law school, I don't think your undergraduate results will have a significant impact on your chances of finding employment. However, this comes with a lot of risks and you should also be mindful that it will come with a lot of unexpected hurdles ahead. Good luck!
  9. It highly depends on which areas of law you are planning to article in. I can't speak from personal experience, but I've encountered a few people that were in a similar position as you. From what I know, they did one or a combination of the following: 1) sought out positions in different clubs; 2) attended various conferences relating to their preferred area; 3) actively searched for volunteer opportunities through cold calling; 4) published an article in their student newspaper, and/or; 5) applied for a placement with PBSC or the school legal clinic. All of them found an articling position before the end of the final semester.
  10. It's best that you look into legal assistant or law clerk positions. You should look into job listings, cold call firms of your choice after narrowing down your preferred practice of law, and also network with other NCA students or lawyers at various events. If you can't find any work experience, you might want to search for volunteer opportunities. I'm not sure if this is available to you in BC, but I believe you can check out Access Pro Bono to see if you can work at pro bono clinics as a law student.
  11. You should definitely go on the exchange. It is an opportunity that doesn't come often. In fact, I think it would give you a better position to write on your application if there is anything that might be related to your experience. There are many students that go on exchange and end up in law school, so you shouldn't be too worried. Although I believe law schools do look at your transcripts for your exchange, I think a few schools do not require an official copy under certain circumstances. In some cases, you may be able to give an unofficial copy to them. Alternatively, you can get a certified copy from the international programs office at your university along with a letter sent to the admissions office to verify the transcript (if the exchange university doesn't provide multiple copies).
  12. You might want to look into this first: http://www.lpab.justice.nsw.gov.au/Pages/admission-overseas-lawyers/admission-overseas-qualified-lawyers.aspx
  13. That might be true for Bond, but I'm not sure if the same would apply for Leicester. Most Canadian students attend UK schools because the distance and years of study is shorter, and the cost of studying there, albeit expensive, is not as expensive as going to Australia or New Zealand. I believe people used to go to Bond because of the NCA exemptions that were given to students studying there, but that has since been removed. I suppose the significant numbers of Canadian students going to Bond might be a major deciding factor. Same thing applies to Leicester.
  14. I don't think OP is actually considering to study law in New Zealand. Probably just curious to see if anyone can answer this question. There aren't too many New Zealand universities as Australian universities, so it isn't as competitive in terms of student recruitment. I think the Australian government is very proactive in going out to the global market to entice international students to go to their universities. A lot of Malaysians, Singaporeans, Chinese, and international students go to Australia to study, supposedly due to better brand recognition in these universities. There are a lot more agencies that recruit students to study in Australian universities, but there isn't such demand for New Zealand universities.
  15. If your end goal is to practice in Canada, then the obvious choice is to go to U of T or McGill. It is not worth going to Oxford just to get through the NCA process later on. Even if you decide that you want to study at Oxford later on, you can always opt to take a year for the BCL program after you complete your JD.
  16. It's possible that you can be a corporate lawyer and work on Bay Street, but it's definitely not going to be one you expect it to be. It will most likely be a small firm renting out some office space at one of the buildings on Bay Street. While there are top law firms hiring through the LPP, they are extremely limited (probably one or two firms), competitive, and likely to be given to a candidate with a Canadian JD degree.
  17. Here's some food for thought: Have you considered looking into other jurisdictions? Have you thought about going to Atlanta? Although it isn't exactly close to Miami, it is one state away and fairly accessible. You can practice law in Georgia, provided that you have enrolled in an eligible LLM program. Since you are considering it after you are called to the bar in Ontario, that should fulfill their second requirement. Here's the link: https://www.gabaradmissions.org/instructions-for-foreign-educated-applicants
  18. Given that you are working at a small firm, I think it's best that you schedule a weekly routine meeting at the beginning of the week with your principal (and also other lawyers that you are directly working with) to debrief on some of the files you've dealt with. This way, you can also get up-to-date information with files that they are dealing with. It also gives you the opportunity to raise some questions that you might want to address at once without needing to approach your principal on a frequent basis. I found that this helped clarify some previous issues and it also helps your principal to understand what is going on.
  19. I highly recommend that you seek better opportunities. As others have mentioned, there are positions opening up around this time and they generally continue until July or August. Don't settle for this because you want to get it done and over with; wait it out a bit and check with your CDO to see if they could put you in a directory of students looking for articling positions. If worse comes to worst, you can always consider the LPP. Deadline to switch to LPP should be end of May.
  20. The same thing does apply to English law school exams. Some markers might be lenient enough to give you partial marks if you misspelled the case name (re: EU law case names), but it is still necessary to cite them as authority for every issue.
  21. I met one or two people that were in your position and they ended up going to the UK. One of them has since been called to the bar and the other is currently working on the NCA exams. It is possible to make it work if you are really sure that you are fully committed. Otherwise, I would err on the side of caution. If you re-evaluated your options and truly believe that you want to pursue your studies in the UK, it is best that you choose LSE over Glasgow. As providence has mentioned, Scottish law is significantly different from Canadian law. Should you go to Glasgow, you will end up with a few more challenge exams than law students studying English law (notably property law and contract law). While LSE is a great school, I don't think it would help you much upon your return to Canada, but you may be able to benefit from the alumni network.
  22. I believe this highly depends on the practice area, type of firm, and the size of firm. To top off with what others have mentioned, I would compare your cover letter to a sales pitch: you should be focusing on your strong qualities and relevant experience that make you an asset to the firm. If you need some templates, I believe there is a guideline from University of Ottawa floating around. Here's the link.
  23. Hi everyone, I have heard of people moving from a small firm to a mid-size firm, but I was just wondering if anyone here has moved from a small firm to a large firm or working as in-house counsel? Was it easy to adjust to the change in environment and workplace dynamics? Were there many people that questioned your reasons to make such a change? Did you feel that this was a right decision you made? Any comments would be appreciated. Thank you!
  24. If you are commuting from Vaughan, I don't see why it is necessary to live in chambers. There is a subway line that goes all the way to Vaughan Metropolitan Centre and it's pretty easy to get to Osgoode from there. Now, I'm not sure where in Vaughan you are commuting from, but given that you could take the VIVA bus, I would suggest saving your money and just commute (unless, for course, you feel like buying a monthly parking pass and drive there).
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