Career pathways into the legal profession for non-lawyers

By Legal Futures Associate ILFM

Career pathways into the legal professional don’t stop at qualifying to practice law. What about the finance and management side of a law firm? It’s a business, with a heavily regulated specialist accounting and bookkeeping aspect.

Of course, there will be students looking at universities, GDL, LPC or SQE, not forgetting the CILEx route, and apprenticeships up for grabs. However, for those liking the idea of working in the legal professional as a non-lawyer, and has a dab hand at numbers, then the accounts department is a no brainer. The accounts department is the engine of a law firm, needing to comply with the SRA Accounts Rules, balance the client and business ledgers and keep track of suspense accounts, as examples of daily tasks. It is a hugely rewarding role that, if one wants, can lead to a career pathway up to partner/director level.

To become a qualified Legal Cashier is no mean feat. It takes determination and tenacity, and the student must have a desire to succeed. Legal cashiers come under many different designations, billing analysts, revenue controllers, accounts payable clerks, office cashiers, the list goes on. Depending on the law firm, and the needs of the business, cashiers often go onto couple that role with practice management or become head cashier before studying, whilst working to become financial controllers, finance directors or CFOs. It’s an excellent pathway for a niche finance role in the legal profession.


The ILFM’s Diploma is CPD Accredited and recruiters, together with law firms, know they are taking on excellence. A law firm requires its client accounts to be protected, as it’s easy to breach the accounts rules without that expertise, as well as being vulnerable to cyber-attack and money laundering.

Each year, the ILFM partner with Balance Recruitment to produce a legal finance salary survey, and it’s no wonder with the specialism of dual accounting and accounts rules, that these roles can ask for competitive salaries. Salaries for legal cashiers are on the rise and it’s no wonder – there aren’t enough of them! They are in demand.

Do partners, sole practitioners and fee earners know what their legal finance teams do?

Qualifications into legal finance can be read HERE.

Associate News is provided by Legal Futures Associates.
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