The Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS) was implemented on 1 September 2010 and replaced the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test (QLTT). The QLTS offers internationally qualified lawyers (as well as English barristers) the opportunity to dual qualify as a solicitor in England and Wales.
The QLTS consists of three assessments which are administered by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) of England and Wales and are delivered by ONE assessment organisation, namely Kaplan QLTS.
Kaplan QLTS have been appointed as the sole provider of the QLTS assessments for a period of three years.
QLTS is open to certain International lawyers from a list of recognised jurisdictions, who wish to dual qualify within England and Wales. Qualification is also open to barristers of England and Wales.
Before you can apply to sit the assessments, you must apply to the SRA for a certificate of eligibility, which is effectively a certificate which confirms that you are eligible to take the QLTS assessments.
When applying to sit the assessments, the SRA will consider the following:-
1) both the applicants qualification and jurisdiction are recognised by the SRA;
2) the applicant must have followed the FULL route to qualification (e.g taken the same assessments as domestic lawyers in a particular jurisdiction) and not a shortened or fast track route to qualification;
3) the applicant has the right to practise without restrictions or conditions upon your practising certificate.
4) the applicant must meet the SRA's suitability and English language requirements.
Before you decide to apply to sit the assessments, check the above with the SRA, for further details please refer to www.sra.org.uk/solicitors/qlts.page
This link will take you to the current version of the SRA's list of recognised jurisdictions.
The SRA update the list regularly.
If your jurisdiction is not listed on the SRA website, you may email the SRA at email@example.com and the SRA will then make enquiries as to whether they can recognise your jurisdiction.
The SRA will assess your suitability upon review of your completed QLTS assessment application form and together with an accompanying certificate of good standing from your home bar.
All EEA, UK and Swiss candidates are exempted from the English language test due to EU legislation (European Directives 2005/36/EC or 98/5/EC). But does apply to ALL International and Intra-UK applicants.
There are two different forms for applicants applying for a certificate of eligibility:
FORM QLTS1 should be completed by applicants from the European Economic Area (EEA), UK and Switzerland.
FORM QLTS2 should be completed by all other International applicants.
It is your responsibility to evidence to the SRA that you are competent in English language at Common European Framework (CEFR) Level C2 or above.
If you are an international applicant applying via the QLTS2 application form or an intra-UK applicant applying on the QLTS1 form, you must be able to show that you have met our English language requirements. You can show this in any of the following ways:
No, unlike the previous QLTT experience requirement, the QLTS criteria does NOT require experience. The QLTS assessments ensure practical exercises as an objective way of assessing applicants' ability to practise in England and Wales.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) have drawn on the experience of comparable regulators, such as the General Medical Council and General Dental Council, which use objective structured clinical examinations (known as Objective Structured Clinical Examinations) to test their candidates.
Candidates who have passed the Legal Practice Course (LPC) are exempt from the MCT assessment ONLY.
There are currently NO exemptions to Part Two (OSCE) and Part Three (TLST).
NOTE: LLB Law Graduates and Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) Graduates are NOT exempt from the MCT
The QLTS comprises of an outcomes based learning process in which QLTS applicants will be assessed against the QLTS Day One Outcomes, covering English legal knowledge, skills and competency levels.
The QLTS assessments have been designed to reflect the same detailed learning outcomes as set for the qualifying law degree, legal practice course (LPC), training contract and professional skills course (PSC) all of which form the domestic route to qualifying as a solicitor in England and Wales.
The level of competency is therefore the same as that of a newly qualified solicitor in England and Wales at the point of qualification.
The QLTS assessments have been designed to reflect the domestic route to qualification as much as possible.
The QLTS assessments comprise of TWO parts:
This part of the assessment essentially covers the under-graduate law degree with aspects of the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) and assesses the candidate’s knowledge of core aspects of the law in England & Wales.
The MCT assessment consists of 180 questions. The exam will be divided into morning and afternoon periods of three hours each, with 90 questions in each period. Each question is based upon an area which will test the candidate upon Part A of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) Day One Outcomes namely:
The OSCE is divided into two parts:
Part I - tests interviewing and advocacy skills,
Part II - tests your online legal research, legal drafting and writing skills.
The OSCE examines Outcomes C, D and F of the SRA's Day One Outcomes. Candidates are examined in the 3 practice areas of:
In each of these practice areas candidates do each of the following exercises once:
In total therefore candidates undertake 15 assessed exercises: 5 in Business, 5 in Property and Probate, and 5 in Civil and Criminal Litigation.
For practical purposes the OSCE is divided into 2 parts as follows:
OSCE Part 1
OSCE Part 2
Part One of the assessments MUST be passed before an applicant can attempt Part Two
The MCT assesses QLTS Day One Outcome A, comprising of core substantive law (essentially that of an under-graduate law degree). QLTS Day One Outcome A, comprises of eleven areas of law detailed below:
A1 - Knowledge of the English Legal System and EU Law
A2 - Knowledge of Constitutional Law
A3 - Professional conduct and Solicitors Accounts
A4 - Knowledge of the Regulatory and Fiscal Frameworks
A5 - Understanding of Contract Law
A6 - Understand of Torts
A7 - Understanding Criminal Law
A8 - Understanding Property Law
A9 - Understanding Equitable Rights and Obligations
A10 - Understanding Human Rights
A11 - Understanding Business Law
There is no denying that the MCT is a tough assessment!
The exam is divided into morning and afternoon periods of three hours each, with 90 questions in each period (the assessment consists of a total of 180 multiple choice questions).
Each of the questions on the test is followed by five possible answers. Candidates should choose the best answer from the stated alternatives. Each question is designed to be answered by applying fundamental legal principles to the given fact patterns.
The questions within the MCT are not designed to catch you out, the facts of a question is not isolated and you are not expected to cite cases.
However, as one of the UK's largest legal training providers and invaluable knowledge and experience of training overseas lawyers, we recognise that comprehensive training is a must for these types of assessments!
The 180 questions will be divided roughly equally between each of these 11 outcomes.The exam is divided into morning and afternoon periods of three hours each, with 90 questions in each period.
Candidates should mark only one answer for each question. Multiple answers will not be counted. Marks are based on the number of questions answered correctly.
There is no set pass mark for any parts of the QLTS assessments. The pass mark is not fixed as it enables the pass mark to be adjusted to eflect the relative difficulty of each individual test.
Part Two of the QLTS assessments - Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) covers the practical legal skills tests. Candidates will be tested against the QLTS Day One Outcomes C, D and F.
Essentially candidates are tested upon the day to day legal skills and knowledge expected of a newly qualified lawyer within England and Wales. Although this part of the assessment is often considered to be a practical test, candidates are still expected to have a good knowledge and understanding of the five areas of law, business, civil and criminal litigation and property and probate. The ability to apply the law to the practical scenarios is essential.
The level of assessment is higher than that of the LPC as this part of the assessment essentially combines the legal knowledge and practical aspects of the domestic training.
The following table illustrates how OSCE Part 1 is organised for each of the 3 practice areas of Business, Property and Probate, and Civil and Criminal Litigation:
Please note that different candidates complete the OSCE Part 1 exercises in different orders. Candidates may therefore start with the advocacy/oral presentation station.
It is anticipated that candidates will undertake OSCE Part 1 in the 3 practice areas in the morning or afternoon on 3 separate but consecutive days. Further details of this are given for each sitting.
The following table shows the timings for the different exercises:
Candidates undertake this cycle 3 times, once for each of the practice areas of Business, Property and Probate, and Civil and Criminal Litigation. It is anticipated that candidates will undertake OSCE Part 2 in the 3 practice areas in the morning or afternoon on 3 separate but consecutive days. Further details of this are given for each sitting. Please note that OSCE Part 2 is a computer based assessment and if there are technical difficulties candidates may be recalled on the day following the end of OSCE Part 2.
Samples materials of the OSCE assessments are available upon the Kaplan QLTS website http://qlts.kaplan.co.uk/the-assessment/osce
Yes, we have compiled comprehensive training packages for all parts of the QLTS assessments. Our training packages have been tailored to ensure that all parts of the QLTS Day One Outcomes are covered.
Our materials have been specifically written for the QLTS and not redacted from other training aids.
We have a team of valuable, experienced and knowledgable experts within the legal sector. Our team comprises of International legal trainers, Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) external examiners, Legal Practice Course (LPC) Lecturers and writers; practising solicitors and barristers.
Both of our MCT and OSCE training packages have been designed to ensure that you will have all of your QLTS training needs in one package. We would not expect you to need to carry out further reading of textbooks to be able to gain a good understanding of the content required to sit the QLTS assessments.
Our products are packed within different learning tools, from comprehensive manuals, supporting resource packs, revision guides, self-assessment materials, resreach tasks and video tutor support. Not to mention access to an online MCT mock test which you can use to test your knowledge as many times as possible. Whats more? we offer training upon how to use the Lexis Library database together with access to the database itself.
CLT offer a comprehensive training package to cover all aspects of your OSCE training, comprising of:
It is very difficult to give a complete answer upon how much study time should be committed to the QLTS assessments, especially as each candidate's circumstances are different, and their method of study, experience and knowledge of English law and general ability will determine the time it takes for them to adequately prepare for each element of the QLTS assessments.
Our course packages offer you the flexibility to study whenever and wherever you may be and our comprehensive student study schedule (which is available within the complimentary student handbook), enables you to allocate your study time around family, work and social commitments.
Some candidates are able to fully prepare for the assessments within a one month period, whilst many others commence their training three to six months before they expect to sit the assessments.
As a general guide, we recommend that you begin your preparation for the MCT as soon as possible, at least 3 months in advance.
As for the OSCE and TLST, based on candidates' experience, it is recommended to spend at least 2-3 months preparation for the two practical assessments.
Kaplan QLTS release feedback following each assessment round, which details that subject areas that candidates showed strengths and weaknesses in.