Could Acculaw change the way that lawyers are trained?
This article examines the implications of the entry onto the scene of Acculaw – a company that administers a low cost training program for law graduates and then offers them to large law firms, thus relieving those firms of much of the cost of training and the guesswork of predicting how many trained lawyers they will need a year in advance.
The kinds of training contracts offered at large law firms over the last decade are generally considered to be too generous for the current economic climate, but law firms have, until now, opted to maintain them in order to preserve their reputations in the industry.
The article points out that the model has some advantages, providing a route into the profession for jobless law graduates, and allowing cash-strapped public sector organizations - like legal aid - to again consider recruiting at the trainee level.
It is early days, but Acculaw has already signed up leading media law firm Olswang to a pilot of the scheme and Acculaw's founder, Susan Cooper, says she is in negotiations with several other firms.
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