leaving law
Wednesday
13/02/2008
13:50
about us

The legal profession will always have a 'shedding', perhaps to a greater extent than other professions. There will always be a shedding because, inter alia, it is oversubscribed, it is highly competitive, some people enter into it for fallacious reasons in the first place, such as parental influence or an outdated belief in what the profession offers. Also, law just is not for everyone, and there is no shame in that. In fact it is only natural that the legal profession, a service industry with exacting standards and demands, deadlines, time sheets and billing targets, can induce the sort of soul searching that is a re-evaluation of priorities and of what makes you tick.

Our story

leavinglaw.com was conceived by a brother and sister, both former private practice City solicitors. We became big advocates of doing whatever it is in life that makes you happy; even - or perhaps especially - if it conflicts with what you feel you ought to be doing. This philosophy was born out of many years spent practising at one of the biggest law firms in the world. Through a sense of conscientiousness, and even a sense that leaving legal practice would constitute some sort of failure or admission of defeat, we stayed unhappy for far too long.

Eventual leaps of faith (into journalism) showed us how much more fulfilled it is possible to be by finding a pursuit you enjoy. How liberating, how much of a salvation even, it is to find a career that complements your character, facilitates your values and aspirations.

It takes courage to leave a path which is prescribed; it is easier to stay on than get off, especially where you have invested so much time and effort to get there in the first place. Judging when your work life has crossed the line between enduring the less edifying aspects that are incumbent to any job, into genuine and continued unhappiness, is not an exact science. Many factors will have a bearing, and many of these will legitimise staying put, especially where a breadwinner has dependents and responsibilities. There are no rights and wrongs of course, we are all different. However, doing something through a sense of obligation can be a long and enervating experience.

Where do you start?

Career change is a challenging upheaval. leavinglaw.com is a profession-empathetic first port-of-call for those who are already set on leaving the law, yet perhaps daunted by the prospect of finding a viable alternative, or lacking in the time for requisite ground work. This site is a unique community portal which collates extensive research and user-fed information into one accessible resource. leavinglaw.com will help you to explore alternative career options, and point you in the right direction.

Ideas, inspiration, impetus and guidance for lawyers seeking career change

The core function of the site is as an ever-evolving catalogue of other occupations into which lawyers have gone, including a comprehensive feature on alternatives within legal practice. Ideas. We are constantly seeking to secure the testimonies of those who have already made the move from private practice into other fields ('share your experience'), and we are especially excited when they are new areas that are not already featured. Inspiration. Each of these examples is of value for the empathy and positivity they bestow. Impetus. To the farthest degree possible we include the details for regulatory, trade or governing associations which may provide further details for training and job opportunities. We are also in the process of consolidating as many affiliations and partnerships with industry-specific and career change-friendly recruitment consultants as possible. Guidance.

For constructive ways of taking a break or changing the scenery, see the 'time away' tab above. Professional counseling services are offered by our partner 'career consultants'. We have also researched an extensive list of useful reference and themed titles which are available via the 'bookstore'.

"The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul"

Law leavers have a tremendous advantage over other career changers in terms of their skill set, education (in a practical sense: you know how the world works), credibility and marketability. There are viable alternatives. You just have to invest time in looking for them, and if it is right for you, make some plans and be brave enough to step off the treadmill.

leavinglaw.com

alternative careers