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In-House Counsel

What do they do?

  • Lawyers working for the employed bar (in-house counsel) look after the needs of the organisation for which they work.

  • The government, large firms and businesses such as football clubs, drinks companies will likely have an in-house team.

  • In-house counsel are required to know about the business, understand how it works, and understand the bigger picture to be able to advise on law and strategy.

  • There is a focus on communication and teamwork, and on being organized and able to prioritize.

  • In-house legal teams are small and less hierarchical – but this does mean fewer chances of promotion. However, in-house lawyers can become an expert in the field in which their company specializes.

 

Where do they work?

  • In the company, within the in-house legal team.

 

Is work experience available?

  • Not usually although the Government Legal Service offers a diversity summer placement scheme.

 

Other details

  • Although many lawyers train in private practice, training contracts are also available in-house. 500 companies are authorised to offer in house training contracts.

  • Many lawyers usually complete secondments before moving in-house.

  • At junior level, pay is better than in private practice, however the more senior you become the less true that becomes as well.