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DWF and BT team up on legal traineeship
Hilary Ross of DWF Pic: DWF

20 Dec 2023 / business Print

DWF and BT team up on legal traineeship

Legal-services group DWF has joined forces with telecommunications group BT to set up a new legal traineeship in the North.

The firms say that the initiative will allow aspiring legal professionals to qualify in English law but remain in Northern Ireland.

The joint traineeship will enable six graduates to qualify as English solicitors through the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) route, covering the associated fees with the qualification and allowing for remote study, with essential in-person attendance only for the two exams.

As DWF and BT Group both have dual-qualified lawyers situated in their Belfast offices, the trainees will have the opportunity to attend training sessions and benefit from mentoring from both organisations.

‘Golden opportunity’

BT Group is also offering one of the six trainees the opportunity to undertake a six-month commercial seat with the company.

“Recognising the challenges faced by law graduates from less socially mobile and diverse backgrounds, the programme provides an alternative pathway for those who may not secure one of the limited places to qualify as a solicitor in Northern Ireland,” the companies say.

Hilary Ross (UK and Ireland regional managing partner at DWF, pictured) described the collaboration as “a golden opportunity” for law graduates in Northern Ireland to pursue a career in English law without having to relocate.

Leeanne Whaley (legal director for digital at BT Group) said that the initiative addressed not only the geographical constraints faced by law graduates in the North, but also emphasised BT’s commitment to diversity and social mobility.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland