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Australian Firm Stops Selling Jobs to Lawyers
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Summary: Australian law firm backs down on charging recent grads $22,000 for a job.

  
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An Australian law firm tried to take advantage of the declining legal market in Southern Australia earlier this year when it announced it would give lawyers a job for the bargain-basement cost of $22,000 (approximately $15,600 dollars in the U.S.).

The Adelaide-based firm, Adlawgroup, promised it would give law grads full-time employment for a period of two years after the grads ponied up. On its website, the firm stated the program would create opportunity for some “2,000 law graduates” with “no immediate employment prospects,” even posting this ad:

 

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Adlawgroup argued that the deal would also be great for grads because they would qualify for an unrestricted practicing certificate after their two-year stint with the firm. In South Australia a legal practitioner must have a South Australian practicing certificate to practice law. A lawyer may be subject to prosecution and disciplinary proceedings for practicing without the proper certification.

Upon learning of the unorthodox arrangement, the Law Society of South Australia voiced its concerns. In June the Society sent a letter to Adlawgroup’s directors, stating they were “making inquiries” into the legality of the program.

AdLawgroup responded to the Law Society’s complaints in August. But the Law Society wasn’t impressed and launched a full inquiry.

Last week the Law Society completed its investigation and raised additional concerns to Adlawgroup’s directors. Adlawgroup finally backed down, stating it no longer intends to charge participants an up-front fee to work as lawyers.

Adlawgroup claims it will operate more like an employment agency than a law firm going forward. However, the head of the Law Society, Rocco Perrotta, cautions, “The Law Society has little information about this proposed new structure.” Perrotta plans to monitor Adlawgroup going forward.

“We believe that the Law Society has not fully understood our business model,” Adlawgroup responded in a statement.

Source: ABC

Additional source: Daily Mail

Photo credit: Daily Mail



 

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