UK law graduate struggling doing LLM in NSW


PominOz
Hi,

I was just hoping for some advice is anyone has any, maybe from their own experience. I qualified as a solicitor in the UK in 2006, having done the PgDL and LPC route. For various reasons I ended up practising for less than a year after I qualified but I have done a few quasi-legal roles since then.

I am now doing an LLM in NSW, having been assessed by the LPAB as being required to do 7 modules in order to be admitted to practice as a solicitor in NSW. I am doing this in order to enter the country with a view to remain in order to join family that already live there. So, in all honesty, it's not necessarily my first choice - it was the only option available to me.

I've just started my first module and I feel completely overwhelmed. Admittedly it is a condensed module in the summer holidays but I'm finding it really hard. My timetable for Semester 1 puts me as doing 5 modules, which I have been told is going to be very difficult.

I just want to pass, I'm under no illusion that I'm going to get an HD. I just wondered if anyone knew from experience whether I am worried about nothing. The way I feel right now is that I'm not going to pass. I am doing the readings and attending lectures and starting to prepare for presentations/assessments but I find myself getting confused and going off on tangents when I'm trying to study.

I have no knowledge of Australian law before now. But the modules all seem to expect that. I do wonder why I was accepted onto the course in the first place, if I'm honest. My legal experience/knowledge is negligible. Passing the PgDL and LPC 16 and 17 years ago and barely practising since doesn't even give me the right to call myself a "solicitor" which is why I never have.

Does anyone have an idea as to whether this workload is possible in my circumstances? If I passed the PgDL and LPC is an LLM (Australian) harder than that?
Many thanks in advance
Hi,

I was just hoping for some advice is anyone has any, maybe from their own experience. I qualified as a solicitor in the UK in 2006, having done the PgDL and LPC route. For various reasons I ended up practising for less than a year after I qualified but I have done a few quasi-legal roles since then.

I am now doing an LLM in NSW, having been assessed by the LPAB as being required to do 7 modules in order to be admitted to practice as a solicitor in NSW. I am doing this in order to enter the country with a view to remain in order to join family that already live there. So, in all honesty, it's not necessarily my first choice - it was the only option available to me.

I've just started my first module and I feel completely overwhelmed. Admittedly it is a condensed module in the summer holidays but I'm finding it really hard. My timetable for Semester 1 puts me as doing 5 modules, which I have been told is going to be very difficult.

I just want to pass, I'm under no illusion that I'm going to get an HD. I just wondered if anyone knew from experience whether I am worried about nothing. The way I feel right now is that I'm not going to pass. I am doing the readings and attending lectures and starting to prepare for presentations/assessments but I find myself getting confused and going off on tangents when I'm trying to study.

I have no knowledge of Australian law before now. But the modules all seem to expect that. I do wonder why I was accepted onto the course in the first place, if I'm honest. My legal experience/knowledge is negligible. Passing the PgDL and LPC 16 and 17 years ago and barely practising since doesn't even give me the right to call myself a "solicitor" which is why I never have.

Does anyone have an idea as to whether this workload is possible in my circumstances? If I passed the PgDL and LPC is an LLM (Australian) harder than that?
Many thanks in advance
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LLMinAus
Did you work through these issues? I am also a UK trained law professional and I am seeking to do an LLM in Australia in order to transition there. Any advice would be much appreciated!
Did you work through these issues? I am also a UK trained law professional and I am seeking to do an LLM in Australia in order to transition there. Any advice would be much appreciated!
quote
PominOz
Hi!

Well, I worked through those issues but I now have more. On the upside, I have passed all 5 modules I did in semester 1 - all distinctions except for one credit/commendation in adverse circumstances that I didn’t pursue because I couldn't face resitting it. I’m just about to start semester 2 and now feel ok about the level of study as I know what is expected of me.

However, the reality is that I now know I can’t stay in Oz. The major reason for that is my age - 41 - that I’m single and have a child to support. If you are young then I think you’ll be fine. If you’re in your 40s I would say you may need to rethink. Since I moved to Oz the immigration rules have changed, now subjecting me to a salary obligation of $145k for my first post qualification job in order to qualify me for the visa - and I’m not going to be able to meet that - few could.

Immigration to Oz is basically a door that is slowly closing over time and each day it gets harder to push your way through. One day it will be completely closed. If you’re below your mid 30s I would say definitely go for it. Towards your late 30s I advise you to talk to a professional. The thing about applying for permanent residency and citizenship is that you have to stay in Oz under fairly draconian conditions (work and residence wise) in order to even apply for either of those but even when you’re entitled to apply there is no guarantee of acceptance and that acceptance could take years even if it’s granted. All the while you’re living on various temporary visas with less rights and it’s pretty stressful.

I’m not sure if you’ve spent much time in Australia but if you come from a nice, leafy part of England like any of the Home Counties, I think it’s possible you may find the Ozzie lifestyle a let down, and it looks like salaries (including law) have been frozen over the past few years and I assume you know that the cost of living in Oz is much higher than the UK. Salaries appear to me to be equivalent.

I don’t want to put you off, if you’re mid 30s or below and you really want this you could do it. If you’re older and/or don’t have a lot of savings already I think you might struggle.

Sorry to be gloomy, I’m trying to be brutally honest but that’s my circumstances and not yours obviously. But please do come back to me if you have specific questions.

Good luck in whatever choice you make.
Hi!

Well, I worked through those issues but I now have more. On the upside, I have passed all 5 modules I did in semester 1 - all distinctions except for one credit/commendation in adverse circumstances that I didn’t pursue because I couldn't face resitting it. I’m just about to start semester 2 and now feel ok about the level of study as I know what is expected of me.

However, the reality is that I now know I can’t stay in Oz. The major reason for that is my age - 41 - that I’m single and have a child to support. If you are young then I think you’ll be fine. If you’re in your 40s I would say you may need to rethink. Since I moved to Oz the immigration rules have changed, now subjecting me to a salary obligation of $145k for my first post qualification job in order to qualify me for the visa - and I’m not going to be able to meet that - few could.

Immigration to Oz is basically a door that is slowly closing over time and each day it gets harder to push your way through. One day it will be completely closed. If you’re below your mid 30s I would say definitely go for it. Towards your late 30s I advise you to talk to a professional. The thing about applying for permanent residency and citizenship is that you have to stay in Oz under fairly draconian conditions (work and residence wise) in order to even apply for either of those but even when you’re entitled to apply there is no guarantee of acceptance and that acceptance could take years even if it’s granted. All the while you’re living on various temporary visas with less rights and it’s pretty stressful.

I’m not sure if you’ve spent much time in Australia but if you come from a nice, leafy part of England like any of the Home Counties, I think it’s possible you may find the Ozzie lifestyle a let down, and it looks like salaries (including law) have been frozen over the past few years and I assume you know that the cost of living in Oz is much higher than the UK. Salaries appear to me to be equivalent.

I don’t want to put you off, if you’re mid 30s or below and you really want this you could do it. If you’re older and/or don’t have a lot of savings already I think you might struggle.

Sorry to be gloomy, I’m trying to be brutally honest but that’s my circumstances and not yours obviously. But please do come back to me if you have specific questions.

Good luck in whatever choice you make.
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