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EMPLOYER TRAILBLAZER GROUP CONVEYANCING AND PROBATE
Apprenticeship Standards Consultation
This consultation is devised to gather the views of employers of conveyancing and probate legal technicians and CLC probate and property lawyers on the proposed changes to the current conveyancing and probate Apprenticeship Standards.
Since the conveyancing and probate apprenticeships came into operation since, legal services delivery, technology and the policies around apprenticeships have moved on. It is therefore timely to review the apprenticeships to ensure they remain fit for purpose.
Tasked by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IFATE), an Employer Review Group has developed an updated and revised set of Apprenticeship Standards CLC Legal Technician and CLC lawyer.
To date recruitment on the apprenticeships has been limited and this can in part, be attributed to a number of reasons relating to the technical specification and difference in funding caps applied by IFATE on the original apprenticeship standards.
The current employer group has put a great deal of importance on ensuring that the suggested changes to the Standards will future proof this valuable Government funded education and training route for prospective specialist property and probate legal professions. The revised standards and additional elements are now ready for wider consultation.
Overview of the proposed structural changes to the Standards:
The employer trailblazer group proposes that the revised Standards should:
Overview of proposed changes to the EPA structure:
Currently around 10% of CLC Students qualify through an Apprenticeship program.
To apply to be a technician or first qualifying licence holder, students are required to complete 1,200 hours of supervised practical experience in relevant employment. However, Apprentices must also pass an additional assessment, the End Point Assessment (EPA).
Completing the EPA extends the typical study period by six months or more and can cost an additional £2,000. There is a widely held view that the EPA could be substantially simplified for those Standards leading to a licence to practise, such as the Licensed Conveyancer and Licensed Probate Practitioner.
Any unnecessary assessment and cost burden from the EPA may also influence the overall numbers of employers and students that are choosing not to take up apprenticeships. The net result is that employers of probate and property professionals are missing out on government funding to train their employees; and employees are missing out on the creditability and growing prestige of being a qualified apprentice.
Following on from this consultation, and the subsequent IFATE approval of the revised Standards, the employer group, with the support of the CLC, will seek authorisation from the IFATE to implement Regulatory Alignment at level 6, in replacement of the current EPA structure.
The EPA at level 4 will also be revised to correspond with the newly drafted KSBs. However, as legal technicians do not hold a licence to practise, this Standard is not eligible for Regulatory Alignment.
Overview of the proposed changes to update Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours
The employer group have vastly improved the revised Standards and also the articulation of the critical Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours (KSBs) that is expected of conveyancing and probate trainee technician and lawyers. We hope that the revised KSBs now better reflect the realities, including the similarities and differences, of each of these roles in practice. Whilst also reflecting the employability and professional conduct expectations of employers and legal supervisors.
Our industry is changing with increased emphasis on new technology, including emerging digital systems, GDPR requirements, AML risk management strategies and more robust KYC procedures. All of which are now relatable in the demands on property and probate legal professional knowledge and skills.
As you consider the draft Standards, please note that:
The employer group is keen to seek industry feedback on the proposed content. Please read the draft apprenticeship Standards and respond to the questions in the online survey. Please share the link with others who you think should, or would like to be, involved.
The draft apprenticeship standards can be found here:
Level 4 – Conveyancing Technician, Probate Technician
Level 6 – Licensed Conveyancer, Probate Practitioner
This consultation will close on the Tuesday 6 December 2022.