- Questions about the Army Legal Service and the army life in general

Hi people hope all is well, if this is the wrong place to post this feel free to either delete it or take the piss.

At a bit of a loss with where I want my life to go at the moment. I'm 21 and in my last semester of University studying Law and International Business. Loved University but I've done enough partying to kill Charlie Sheen now and ready to get out there in the big bad world. Careers in the civilian world just aren't appealing to me whatsoever and I've always had a gut -feeling about the Army.

My dad was in the REME for 22 years and reckons that would suit me the best and I'd enjoy it, and I don't doubt I would, but recently I've stumbled across the magical world of the Army Legal Service , however I'm struggling to wrap my head around it as there doesn't seem to be much information on it whatsoever, and the geezer in the Army Careers Office barely knew a potato from a tomato - looked absolutely baked out his skull (although I'm sure he wasn't). So just a couple questions if anyone could help.

1) Am I right in thinking that it is possible to join the ALS with a law degree and completion of the PLC course? Do they usually only go for people that have a few years experience in the civilian legal world?

2) Do you think life in the ALS is satisfying from a value point of view i.e do you think the work they do bares any weight or is it more just mundane nothing work that has no meaning?

3) Since my dad is always right (as he loves to remind me), my gonads are swinging to the more hands on, active arms of the army such as the REME or the Royal Artillery and I've no doubt I would love every minute of it the good and the bad times, but without sounding like my priorities are in the wrong place and a bit shallow - would trying to go for officer in one of these arms provide enough comfort financially to be able to pay off the numerous debts from university I've acquired and still live comfortably/happily, as opposed to doing the extra year (and extra debt) on the PLC course and going into the Army Legal Service.

Appreciate it's a bit of a long one, grateful for any advice or wisdom you can bestow upon me.

Not letting me reply to individual comments for some reason but if any of you see this just like to say thankyou very much for your time and I will look into the links/contacts etc provided now, all the best!
 
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1) Am I right in thinking that it is possible to join the ALS with a law degree and completion of the PLC course? Do they usually only go for people that have a few years experience in the civilian legal world?
Looking at the information in your post I would guess that your Degree is not likely to be a qualifying Law Degree so you would have to convert it by completing a Graduate Diploma in Law (1 year £12K), then you could go forward to the Legal Practice Course, LPC (£16K and another year). Not much point in doing either unless you secure a Training Contract and as there are 30% too many people qualifying on the LPC each year training contracts do not fall from trees. After successfull completion of the LPC you then have a two year training contract to complete at the end of which you will be a Solicitor.

So four to five years and a shed load of debt before you can start applying to ALC.

For a confidential discussion about legal roles in the Army, please contact ...


MOD edit - by PM please
 
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Friend of mine is in the ALC/AGC(ALS) at the moment - he was in a similar position to you in terms of wanting a change, but did it a couple of years down the line after conversion, LPC, magic circle training contract, and a few years qualified. He loves it because it's a good balance of army stuff and law stuff (as you would hope from the name). But he didn't go in straight from university. Call the number above and have a chat.
 
If you have a qualifying law degree it would be a shame not to use it......but, look at Gerard Butler! On the other hand, why not consider the Int Corps? There used to be an incredible amount of opportunity for hands on soldiering, adventuerous training and travel.......opportunities for 'P" Coy and RM qualification courses. No idea what it is like today, but worth a peep.
 
Looking at the information in your post I would guess that your Degree is not likely to be a qualifying Law Degree so you would have to convert it by completing a Graduate Diploma in Law (1 year £12K), then you could go forward to the Legal Practice Course, LPC (£16K and another year). Not much point in doing either unless you secure a Training Contract and as there are 30% too many people qualifying on the LPC each year training contracts do not fall from trees. After successfull completion of the LPC you then have a two year training contract to complete at the end of which you will be a Solicitor.

So four to five years and a shed load of debt before you can start applying to ALC.

For a confidential discussion about legal roles in the Army, please contact ...


MOD edit - by PM please
It is on the ALC recruitment page on the Mod website for exactly the purpose I posted it. Public domain to assist potential candidates not a secret.

 

FakeSheikh2

Old-Salt
Have you thought of the Royal Navy as a career as think you can still be dual trained?
Logistics Officer & Barrister at Law comes to mind, was some years ago, but a good route if open still?
Navy Legal Services used to have good postings in Gibraltar, Far East & USA.
 

soleil

War Hero
PoG

As far as the Bar is concerned, it might be worthwhile identifying sets which have Barristers who practise in the right area of the law and then applying to that set for a mini-pupillage. I would start with a list of, say, ten good prospects. I've just been reading about some of them myself and a good number seem to be reservists who are also in the ALS.

I've started you off with a good example. You would do well to look at this example and then apply for a mini-pupillage at his Chambers.



Now that you have that as a starter, you can look out others and add to your list.
 

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