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What we look for

Successful pupillage candidates will have outstanding intellectual ability. Typically, although not invariably, that means that they will have or expect a first class degree.  Further details of our policies and selection criteria are available on the pupillage policy page. We take up to three pupils per year, and the recruitment process is described below: please note the requirement of a mini-pupillage and the associated deadlines.

What we offer

For pupils commencing in Autumn 2018 we offer an award of £65,000. Our pupillage award scheme is split into two parts. In respect of the 'first' six months, the award is £43,350. The balance of the award, £21,650, is paid in respect of the 'second' six.

We allow our prospective pupils to draw down up to £25,000 of their pupillage award in the year before commencing pupillage. The draw down is treated as a loan, repaid across the twelve months of the pupillage year. Accordingly, the pupillage award in both the 'first' six and the 'second' six is paid in six monthly instalments taking into account of the drawdown paid out.

Recruitment process

Chambers recruits through the Pupillage Gateway.  Pupillage candidates selected for interview will be required to undertake a written exercise in advance of the interview and will also discuss a legal problem provided shortly before the interview begins. We have found this a good way of identifying successful pupils; the process is appreciated by candidates who feel they have been challenged in a friendly and positive way.

Established Practitioners with Exemptions

If you are an established practitioner (such as a transferring solicitor) with exemption from the vocational stage of training and at least a partial exemption from the professional stage (i.e. pupillage) you may apply in the first instance to our Recruitment Committe (see Those needing to do a period of pupillage).

The work

Once in pupillage, the pupil's role is:

  • to carry out legal research
  • to draft statements of cases and skeleton arguments
  • to write opinions
  • to assist his or her supervisor at court and arbitration hearings
  • to attend conferences

Over the course of the year the pupil will work for as many members of chambers as possible, including the most junior. Pupils will also take part in a programme of advocacy exercises. We expect our pupils to work hard during the normal working week, but do not expect or allow them to work late hours in chambers or at weekends, or to take work home.

Beyond pupillage

Our aim is to recruit the very best pupils who will stand an excellent chance of being offered tenancy. We recruit junior tenants from our own pupils. Space in chambers is not a consideration, and there is no pre-determined number of places. If a pupil is good enough, he or she will be offered tenancy. For many years we have recruited at the average rate of more than one new tenant a year. New tenants enjoy generous concessions in their first year and can expect a busy and wide-ranging commercial practice and have the opportunity of secondments worldwide.

Further information

If you have any queries please email us at pupillage [at] 20essexst [dot] com.

We are committed to ensuring equal opportunities for members, staff, pupils, mini-pupils, prospective tenants and prospective pupils, and we are equal opportunities employers.  We provide various services for people with disabilities.