Training review puts stop to five-year qualifying law degree

The first ever five-year qualifying law degree has been put on hold by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) as it awaits the outcome of the Legal Education and Training Review report into legal education, due later this month.

The degree, taught at Northumbria University, combined an LLB with the LPC and training contract.

Irwin Mitchell and Watson Burton were both signed up to the pilot programme as partner firms. The degree formed one of the four strands of the SRA’s work based learning pilot (WBL).

A Northumbria spokesperson said: “It has been put on hold for the foreseeable future, mainly because of the Legal Education and Training Review. The SRA is waiting for the outcomes of that.”

The SRA said in a statement: “The intention was always… that this was a discrete, time-limited pilot. Northumbria did approach us for an extension of the M Law (solicitor) to new cohorts. We have not approved this extension because the WBL is now closed and we are considering the pilot results alongside the wider picture that the LETR will reveal.”

Northumbria Law School was given the power to award students wishing to practice in India with degrees last year. (14 May 2012)