Origin Legal – A Take on Legal Apprenticeships with Howes Percival LLP

Origin Legal – A Take on Legal Apprenticeships with Howes Percival LLP

Origin Legal - A Take on Legal Apprenticeships with Howes Percival LLP.

Last week Jason Nottage spoke with Howes Percival's HR business partner Katy Tebbutt to discuss all things to do with Legal Apprenticeships. As an innovative law firm, Howes Percival have embraced the non-traditional route to becoming a solicitor. Katy having been with Howes Percival for over 25 years tells us the story and everything you need to know about becoming a legal apprentice.

Firstly Katy, thank you for your time and for giving us an insight into being an apprentice solicitor. Early February was National Apprenticeship Week so it’s a very on-trend topic. When did Howes Percival first start to take on Apprentice solicitors?

We dipped our toe in fairly early with our first apprentice solicitor starting with us in September 2022.  Since then we’ve had a number of current staff members join the scheme, making the move from secretary or paralegal.  The apprentice scheme has been on our agenda for some time, however, and forms a large part of our new outreach programme and firm strategy to recruit more junior staff who we can nurture and invest in to help us continue to provide excellent, efficient services to clients.

Over your career how many legal apprenticeships have Howes Percival taken on and do most of those successfully qualify as a solicitor?

We currently have 5 legal apprentice solicitors.  We haven’t yet had any qualify although we anticipate all 5 will do so, with the first due to finish in 2027.

What is the application process for young people looking to follow this route? What level of academics do you look for from successful applicants?

We advertise our apprentice solicitor roles through the Government website, our own website and Indeed.  We’re looking for between 90 and 120 UCAS points depending on the role and for apprenticeships in our support teams, this may differ again. We know that some candidates for apprenticeships may have limited work experience due to their age so our application process is really supportive and focuses on getting to know them and giving them an opportunity to show their skills and potential.

As an apprentice what is the path like through to qualification? How long does this route take?

The role starts by undertaking the 2 year paralegal apprenticeship and then commencing the 4 year solicitor apprenticeship course.  Generally the course will take around 6 and a half years with a mix of on the job training and independent study, 4 days per week working for us and 1 day a week studying with the training provider.  At the end of the qualification you will achieve an LLB (Hons) in Law and Legal Practice and will sit the Solicitors Qualifying Examination, offering a viable alternative route to qualification as a solicitor.

As an Apprentice, is learning on the job different to that of a traditional Trainee solicitor? What would a day-to-day look like for a typical Howes Percival Legal apprentice?

The role does differ to a traditional trainee solicitor role as there doesn’t have to be the element of rotation and moving to different practice groups (for example previously they had to do at least one transactional seat e.g. Corporate/Property and one litigation seat as a minimum).  The apprentice solicitor can stay in the same practice area for the duration of the apprenticeship which really allows them to embed into the team and fully understand the ins and outs of the work.  A typical day might involve researching case law, drafting correspondence or reports with supervision or sitting in on a client meeting.

To a young aspiring solicitor, what are some of the benefits of following this route to qualification?

You are gaining so much practical legal experience and learning about the firm, the profession and the clients and achieving the same qualification as others who take the traditional university route.  You are also being paid whilst you learn and won’t end up with a massive university debt at the end whilst still needing to find a job!

With the balance of studying and working at the same time, what are some of the biggest challenges young people face when taking on a legal Apprenticeship?

It is a long process and requires commitment (but so does going to university and completing the LPC and a training contract) but the benefits as mentioned above make this a great entry to the legal profession without the debt!

As the popularity of Legal Apprenticeships increases and therefore competition increases what 3 bits of advice would you give a young person considering this route?

Do your research about the area of law you are entering into, this is the area you will be spending all of your time in and qualifying into so it needs to be something you are engaged with.  Be prepared to work hard!  Look at trying to gain some work experience in a law firm so you can experience working in law and a professional services environment and decide if it is right for you.

Finally, Katy are you aware of any websites or professional bodies that we can direct young people to to find more information on becoming a Legal Apprentice?

A good place to start is the government website: as well as the websites of training providers like BPP but we also have lots of information on our website:


Jason Nottag

About The Author |Jason Nottage

An extremely loyal recruiter, Jason has developed a strong client following particularly in the Midlands and Northern Home Counties. Over the last 20 years Jason has worked closely with a wide range of clients and candidates on several high profile legal moves.


Moving to the UK as an Overseas Planning or Environment Lawyer

By Stuart Phillips | April 17, 2024 | 0 Comments
Moving to the UK as an Overseas Planning or Environment Lawyer The demand for Planning and Environment Lawyers in the UK is strong.  With continued investment into infrastructure projects especially in areas such as renewables as well as the continued…

Origin Legal interview with Nexa Law

By Taylor Day | February 27, 2024 | 0 Comments
Origin Legal interview Nexa Law Jason Nottage recently sat down with John McAuley and Eliot Hibbert from Nexa Law to discuss the world of consultancy and all things Nexa. The firm has been going from strength to strength in recent…

Why you should consider practicing Planning & Environment Law in the UK. 

By Stuart Phillips | February 5, 2024 | 0 Comments
Why you should consider practicing Planning & Environment Law in the UK.  I began recruiting Planning & Environment Lawyers in 2002.  I didn’t take long to realise that they are nice people who were enthusiastic about the work that they…

Secret Santa Colchester Foodbank Donation

By Taylor Day | December 19, 2023 | 0 Comments
Secret Santa Colchester Foodbank Donation For Christmas this year, our team embraced the spirit of giving, rather than participating in the traditional Secret Santa exchange, we collectively chose to contribute to our local food bank, which plays a crucial role…

Origin Legals interview with Bexley Beaumont

By Jason Nottage | October 31, 2023 | 0 Comments
Origin Legal Interviews Bexley Beaumont On a recent revisit to Birmingham Jason Nottage got the chance to sit down again with Karen Bexley and Anna Beaumont to discuss the latest happenings at Bexley Beaumont and what life looks like for…

0 comments on “Origin Legal – A Take on Legal Apprenticeships with Howes Percival LLP

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *