Are you considering a judge's associateship?

Working as a lawyer means being in court right? Well not for a lot of lawyers surprisingly. If you do want to end up as a barrister or working in litigation, then spending a year as an associate in any of the courts is going to give you plenty of useful insight and skills. Applications close on Friday 25 January 2019, so if you are a law student looking for an alternative career path, we have answered some questions you might be wondering about the judge's associateship position.

Why should you consider a judge's associateship position?

First and foremost, these positions are both rewarding and prestigious. You will be exposed to a wide variety of work, both inside and outside of Court. If you have a particular interest in litigation, this is the position for you, as you will become intimately familiar with court documents, proceedings, processes and procedures. You will work alongside solicitors, barristers and a myriad of other practitioners - not to mention Judges. The Judges Associateship position is also highly regarded by future employers because of the skills, knowledge and confidence gained from working as an Associate. It doesn't matter whether you decide to transition to private practice, join the bar or pursue an academic career, being a Judge's Associate is nothing but beneficial.  

What does the role entail?

As a judge's associate, you essentially get to follow a judge around every day. Most days will be spent in the courtroom but will vary depending on the nature of the proceedings – be it a trial, sentencing, pre-records, hearings etc. This means that each day will likely be a little bit different from the last. As an associate, you will be required to keep a record of everything happening in the courtroom - as someone will most likely ask you about a minor detail at one point in time or another. But don't despair, the job is not all administration. Being a Judge's Associate means you have access to all the goings-on in the courtroom. Not only will you watch solicitors and barristers battle it out on the front line, but you will get behind the scenes access to Judge's commentary.

How can you make your application stand out?

The application process for the judge's associateship position is kind of odd - mainly due to the nature of the work. You are working very closely with one person, being the Judge, so each of them will be looking for something different. While it is important to showcase your academic achievements, it is also important to remember that judges are not looking for someone who can only fill the role academically, but for someone who is also a good fit for their chambers. So make sure you let your personality shine through in your application, for better or worse, as your experience will be dictated by your relationship with those in your chambers.

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