Applications are now open for the European Lawyers Programme (ELP) 2017 in Edinburgh

3 months’ experience in a common law legal system interacting with Scottish advocates and judges

The ELP is a three-month programme for European qualified lawyers at the Faculty of Advocates (Scottish Bar) providing an unrivalled opportunity to work with judges and practicing lawyers in Scotland. The ELP is free of charge and allows successful applicants to shadow advocates and a judge of the Court of Session (the supreme civil court) and the High Court of Justiciary (the supreme criminal court).

The Scottish legal profession, like its counterpart in England and Wales, operates a split bar system. Advocates (like English barristers) are part of an independent referral bar of specialized court pleaders, immediately recognizable by their wig and gown when appearing in court. The ELP thus provides a superb opportunity for 10 European lawyers to gain first-hand experience of an adversarial English-speaking legal system. Previous participants have developed long-lasting and profitable relationships with Scottish  and European lawyers. The Scottish legal system should also be of considerable interest for lawyers from continental Europe, as it is a “mixed” system – it is primarily a common law/adversarial system, but also contains some uncodified civil law concepts and principles.

The programme consists of two parts. The first part is a two-week introductory course on the Scottish legal system. This includes a wide range of legal subjects (including written pleadings and oral advocacy), delivered by judges, advocates and academics. The second, and principal, part of the programme involves placements with a Court of Session/High Court judge, a senior (Queen’s Counsel) and a junior advocate.

The ELP is organised by the Faculty of Advocates (www.advocates.org.uk) and the European Lawyers Association (www.european-lawyers.org) and has run successfully for over 40 years. The programme enjoys financial support from Vialegis (www.vialegis.be).

The next ELP takes place between 18 April 2017 and 30 June 2017. If you are a qualified lawyer, preferably with a minimum of two years work experience, and have good knowledge of English (equivalent to IELTS 7.0 or TOEFL 100), we look forward to receiving your application. The ELP is free of charge but participants have to cover their own accommodation and living expenses during their stay in Edinburgh. To access the application form and for further information please visit www.european-lawyers.org or contact Stan van Liere at Liere@ekvandoorne.com or by phone (+31) (0)6 46 83 07 46. The application process closes on 15 October 2016.