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UNLOCK SQE1

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDANCE

Well, you’ve finally decided! You will sit the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE). You can see the finish line from here, but this test stands in the way of your future. Considering the amount of information available, you may find yourself unfamiliar with the mechanics of the exam and unsure of the terminology that’s being thrown around (FLK1, FLK2… what are those?). It is important to cut through the noise to focus on what’s important, in order to study smart! Here, we will do a brief walk-through of the SQE1 and answer student questions that may sound familiar to you.

FIGURE OUT THE BASICS OF SQE1

Location

SQE1 is delivered through test centres administered by Pearson VUE. The assessments will be available in designated examination centres in England and Wales, as well as some international locations.

Dress Code

None. You can wear what you feel comfortable in. 

Fees

SQE1 Exam Fee is £1,558.

Testing Mode

SQE1 assessments are computer-based.

 

SQE1 is an entirely closed-book exam.


The questions are single-best-answer multiple choice.

 

Each question is followed by 5 possible answers. 

 

Candidates should mark only one answer for each question. 

 

Click here to view SQE1 sample questions.

Components

SQE1 consists of 2 assessments that are taken on 2 separate days. On each day, the assessment is broken into 2 sessions.

SQE1 contains 360 questions in total, divided as follows:

Assessment (1)

180 questions; 90 questions in Session (A) and 90 questions in Session (B).

Assessment (2)

180 questions; 90 questions in Session (A) and 90 questions in Session (B).

Duration

Each session is 2hrs 33minThus, there is approx. a total of 10hrs 12min when you will actually be sitting in your chair taking the exam. 

 

A 60-minute break is scheduled at the end of the first session on each day.

 

TIP: With simple math, you can plan how rapidly you must answer in order to finish on time. For example, if there are 90 questions in a session, then you have approx. 2min 42s per answer. Stay on course! 

EXPECTATION OF THE KNOWLEDGE REQUIRED

Depth & Breadth

The questions are designed to test the application of fundamental legal principles which can be expected of a newly qualified solicitor without reference to books and notes

 

The questions are not designed to test matters of detail which a newly qualified solicitor would be expected to look up. 

 

Candidates are required to know and be able to use case names, statutory provisions, etc. However, candidates are not required to recall specific case names or cite statutory or regulatory authorities.

Functioning Legal Knowledge

SQE1 tests 13 subject areas: Business Law and Practice, Dispute Resolution, Contract, Tort, Legal System of England and Wales, Public Law, Legal Services, Property Law and Practice, Land Law, Wills and the Administration of Estates, Solicitors Accounts, Trusts and Criminal Law and Practice.

 

The knowledge required of SQE1 candidates are that of Functioning Legal Knowledge (FLK). FLK is simply the knowledge you are expected to have in relation to the subject areas.

SQE1 will not include a skills assessment. Instead, skills are assessed through SQE2. 

Crossover Questions

Questions can test on one subject area, or they might cover more than one subject area.

 

For example, you could have a purely contract law question, or you may have a contract law and dispute resolution crossover question that tests both areas of law. 

Crossover questions would be from subject areas covered within the same FLK Assessment. In other words, you will not have a crossover question that covers subject areas from FLK1 and FLK2 at the same time.

Law Updates

Candidates will be tested on the law as it stands at the date of the assessment. They will not be assessed on the development of the law.

Resits

You must take any resits within 6 years of your first SQE sitting. You will only be allowed 3 attempts at each assessment. You cannot book SQE2 until you have received your results and passed SQE1. If you fail these, at the end of the 6 years you can start again from the beginning.

WHAT WILL THE SQE1 ASSESSMENTS TEST?

Click on the subject area to see a checklist of the topics included in each

Assessment 1

FLK1 IS ASSESSED ON ASSESSMENT 1

Assessment 1 (FLK1) Blueprint:

Assessment 2

FLK2 IS ASSESSED ON ASSESSMENT 2

Assessment 2 (FLK2) Blueprint:

  • Trust Law (14-20% of paper)

CHECKLIST OF TOPICS INCLUDED IN EACH SUBJECT AREA

 

BUSINESS LAW AND PRACTICE (FLK1)

​[SQE1 Business questions will not assess the Listing, Prospectus, Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules and any other FCA, London Stock Exchange, market rules or codes]

(1) Starting a new business: Business and organisational characteristics (sole trader, partnership, LLP, private companies and unlisted public companies), legal personality, limited liability, procedures and documentation required to incorporate a company/form a partnership/LLP, and other steps required under companies and partnerships legislation to enable the entity to commence operating (constitutional documents and Companies House filing requirements).

(2) Financing a business: Funding options (debt and equity), types of security, distribution of profits and gains, financial records, information and accounting requirements.

(3) The interests, rights, obligations and powers of stakeholders in a company: Rights, duties and powers of directors and shareholders of companies and minority shareholder protection.

(4) Corporate governance & compliance: Company decision-making and meetings (procedural, disclosure & approval requirements), documentary, record-keeping, statutory filing and disclosure requirements, and appointment and removal of directors.

(5) Partnership decision-making and authority of partners: Procedures and authority under the Partnership Act 1890 and common provisions in partnership agreements.

(6) Insolvency (corporate insolvency and personal bankruptcy): Options and procedures (CVA/IVA, bankruptcy, administration, receivership, fixed asset voluntary and compulsory liquidation), claw-back of assets for creditors (preferences, transactions at an undervalue, fraudulent and wrongful trading, setting aside a floating charge), and order of priority for distribution to creditors.

(7) Taxation of a business and its stakeholders: Income Tax (chargeable persons/entities including employees, sole traders, partners, shareholders, lenders and debenture holders, basis of charge, types of income/main reliefs and exemptions, charge to tax calculation and collection, and the scope of anti-avoidance provisions), Capital Gains Tax (chargeable persons/entities(sole traders, partners, and shareholders), basis of charge calculation of gains/allowable deductions/main reliefs and exemptions, charge to tax calculation and collection and the scope of anti-avoidance provisions), Corporation Tax (basis of charge, calculation, payment and collection of tax, tax treatment of company distributions or deemed distributions to shareholders, and outline of anti-avoidance legislation), Value Added Tax (Key principles relating to scope, supply, input and output tax, registration requirements and issue of VAT invoices, and returns/payment of VAT and record-keeping), and Inheritance Tax (Business Property Relief).
 

DISPUTE RESOLUTION (FLK1)

(1) Different options for dispute resolution: The characteristics of arbitration, mediation and litigation which make them an appropriate mechanism to resolve a dispute.

(2) Pre-action considerations and steps for resolving a dispute through a civil claim: Parties and causes of action, calculating limitation periods for claims in contract and tort, pre-action Conduct and Protocols (pre-action conduct and the principles and purpose of pre-action protocols governing particular claims and consequences for failure to follow their terms), mechanisms to determine which country’s laws apply to a contractual or tortious claim issued in the courts of England and Wales, and mechanisms to determine jurisdiction over international contractual or tortious claims.

(3) Analysis of merits of claim or defence

(4) Where to start proceedings: Allocation between the High Court and the county court and jurisdiction of the specialist courts.

(5) Issuing and serving proceedings: Issuing a claim form, adding, removing or substituting parties, service of a claim form within the jurisdiction, the procedure for service of a claim form outside the jurisdiction (with or without the court’s permission) and mechanisms for effecting valid service in another jurisdiction, deemed dates of service and time limits for serving proceedings, and service by an alternative method.

(6) Responding to a claim: Time limits for responding to a claim, admitting the claim, acknowledging service, filing a defence and/or counterclaim, disputing the court’s jurisdiction, entering and setting aside judgment in default, discontinuance, and settlement.

(7) Statements of case: The purpose, structure and content of a claim form, particulars of claim, defence, a reply, Part 20 claim or defence to Part 20 claim, requests for further information about statements of case, and amendments of statements of case.

(8) Interim applications: Procedure for making an interim application and the purpose, procedure and evidence required for particular applications (summary judgment, interim payments and interim injunctions).

(9) Case management: The overriding objective, track allocation, Case management directions for cases proceeding on the fast or multi-tracks, non-compliance with orders, sanctions and relief, and costs and case management conferences.

(10) Evidence: The burden and standard of proof, relevance, hearsay and admissibility of evidence, witness evidence (witness statements and affidavits, and expert evidence (opinion evidence, duties of experts, single joint experts and discussion between experts).

(11) Disclosure and inspection: Standard disclosure, orders for disclosure, specific disclosure, pre-action and non-party disclosure, electronic disclosure, privilege and without prejudice communications and waiver of privilege.

(12) Trial: Summoning witnesses, preparations for trial (purpose of pre-trial checklists and hearings and purpose of trial bundles), trial procedure (including modes of address, court room etiquette and the difference between leading and non-leading questions), and the nature and effect of judgments.

(13) Costs: Costs management and budgeting, inter-partes costs orders (interim and final), non-party costs, qualified one-way costs shifting, Part 36 and other offers, security for costs, and fixed and assessed costs.

(14) Appeals: Permission, destination of appeals and grounds for appeals.

(15) Enforcement of money judgments: Oral examination, methods of enforcement, procedure and mechanisms for effecting valid enforcement in another jurisdiction.
 

 

CORE PRINCIPLES OF CONTRACT LAW (FLK1)

(1) Different options for dispute resolution: The characteristics of arbitration, mediation and litigation which make them an appropriate mechanism to resolve a dispute.

(2)  Existence/formation of a contract: Offer and acceptance, consideration, intention to create legal relations, certainty and capacity.

(3) Parties: Privity of contract and rights of third parties.

(4) Contract terms/contents of a contract: Express terms, terms implied by common law and statute, incorporation of terms, exemption clauses, the interpretation of contract terms (conditions, warranties and innominate terms), and variation.

(5) Vitiating factors: Misrepresentation, mistake, unfair contract terms, duress, undue influence, and illegality.

(6) Discharge of contract and termination: Expiry or another specified event, breach, frustration, basic principles of restitution and unjust enrichment in the context of termination of a contract.

(7) Remedies: Damages, liquidated sums and penalties, specific performance, injunctions, duty to mitigate, indemnities and guarantees.

(8) Causation and remoteness

 

CORE PRINCIPLES OF TORT (FLK1)

(1) Negligence: Duty of care (standard - general and professional), breach, causation (single and multiple), remoteness and loss, principles of remedies for personal injury and death claims, claims for pure economic loss arising from either a negligent act or misstatement, claims for psychiatric harm and employers’ primary liability (operation and effect of the common law principles).

 

(2) Defences: Consent, contributory negligence, illegality and necessity.

 

(3) Vicarious liability: Principles of vicarious liability.

 

(4) Occupiers’ Liability: Legal requirements for a claim under the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 (in relation to visitors) and the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1984 (in relation to non-visitors), defences and exclusion of liability.

 

(5) Product liability: Principles in negligence and principles of the Consumer Protection Act 1987.

 

(6) Nuisance: Public and private nuisance, the rule in Rylands v Fletcher, remedies (damages and injunctions) and defences.

 

LEGAL SYSTEM, SOURCES OF LAW, CONSTITUTIONAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE LAW, AND EU LAWS (FLK1)

(1) Courts: The judiciary, court hierarchy, the appeal system and jurisdiction and rights of audience.

(2) Development of case law: The doctrine of precedent.

(3) Primary legislation: the structure of an act of Parliament.

(4) Statutory interpretation: The literal rule, the golden rule, the mischief rule, the purposive approach, presumptions, and aids to statutory interpretation and construction.

(5) Core institutions of the state and how they interrelate: Parliament and parliamentary sovereignty, central government and accountability, the status of the devolved institutions and their relationship with Westminster, the monarch and the Crown, the role of constitutional conventions, prerogative power (relationship with legislation and constitutional conventions), and parliamentary privilege.

(6) Legitimacy, separation of powers and the rule of law: Powers and procedures for the enactment, implementation and repeal of primary and secondary legislation, Public Order Law (processions, assemblies and breach of the peace), and judicial review (the nature, process and limits of judicial review, supervisory nature, remedies, decisions which may be challenged, standing, time limits and grounds (illegality, irrationality, procedural impropriety and legitimate expectation).

(7) Human Rights: Human Rights Act 1998 and the European Convention on Human Rights (Sections 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 10 and Schedule 1 of the Human Rights Act 1998 the “Convention Rights”).

(8) Place of EU law in the UK constitution: Sources of retained EU law, categories/status/interpretation of retained EU law, modification/withdrawal of retained EU law, and parliamentary sovereignty and retained EU law.

 

LEGAL SERVICES (FLK1)

(1) The regulatory role of the SRA: Principles and risk-based regulation (reserved legal activities, professional indemnity insurance and other regulated providers of legal services).

(2) Equality Act 2010 obligations

(3) Money laundering obligations: The purpose and scope of anti-money laundering legislation including the international context, circumstances encountered in the course of practice where suspicion of money laundering should be reported per the legislation, the appropriate person or body to whom suspicions should be reported, the appropriate time for such reports to be made and the appropriate procedure to be followed, direct involvement and non-direct involvement offences, defences to those offences under Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, and due diligence requirements.

(4) Financial services obligations: The financial services regulatory framework including authorisation, and how it applies to solicitors’ firms, recognition of relevant financial services issues, including the identification of specified investments, specified activities and relevant exemptions, application of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and related secondary legislation to the work of a solicitor and appropriate sources of information on financial services.

(5) Funding options for legal services: Private retainer, conditional fee arrangements, damages-based agreements, fixed fees, eligibility for criminal and civil legal aid, third party funding, and legal expenses insurance.

 

ETHICS AND PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT (FLK1 & FLK2)

(1) SRA Principles: The purpose, scope and content of the SRA Principles.

(2) SRA Code of Conduct: The purpose, scope and content of the SRA Code of Conduct for Solicitors, RELs and RFLs as well as the SRA Code of Conduct for Firms in relation to Managers in authorised firms and Compliance Officers.

[See the Statement of Solicitor Competence (SoSC) at Annex 1 of the SQE1 Assessment Specification]

 

SOLICITORS ACCOUNTS (FLK2) 

(1) Client money: Definition, the requirement to pay client money into a client account, circumstances in which client money may be withheld from a client account, repayment, accounting entries required and the requirement to keep client money separate from money belonging to the authorised body.

(2) Client account: Meaning and name of the account, obligation not to use client account to provide banking facilities, withdrawals and accounting entries required.

(3) Interest: Requirement to pay interest on client money and accounting entries required.

(4) Breach of the SRA Accounts Rules: Duty to correct breaches of SRA Accounts Rules promptly on discovery and accounting entries required.

(5) Requirement to keep and maintain accurate records in client ledgers, including the requirement to carry out reconciliation of client accounts and to keep a record of bills to include disbursements using the agency and principal methods, transfers, submission, reduction and payment of bills including the VAT element, and accounting entries required.

(6) Operation of joint account and a client’s own account.

(7) Third-party managed accounts.

(8) Obtaining and delivery of accountants’ reports; storage and retention of accounting records.

 

PROPERTY PRACTICE (FLK2)

(1) Investigation of a registered and unregistered freehold title: Key elements and structure of freehold property transactions, the process of analysing Land Registry official copy entries, the process of analysing an epitome of title and deducing ownership, issues that could arise from an investigation of title and further action required, and purpose and process of reporting to the client.

(2) Pre-contract searches and enquiries: Range and purpose of making searches and raising enquiries, who would make the searches and raise enquiries, and the results of searches and enquiries.

(3) Law Society Conveyancing Protocol

(4) Finance: Sources of finance for a property transaction and types of mortgage.

(5) Acting for a lender: Lender’s requirements and purpose of a certificate of title.

(6) Preparation for and exchange of contracts: Key conditions contained in the Standard Conditions of Sale and Standard Commercial Property Conditions, the purpose of, and matters covered by, special conditions, methods of holding a deposit (stakeholder or agent), insurance and risk, basics of VAT in a contract, the timing for issuing a certificate of title to a lender, the practice, method and authority to exchange and consequences of exchange.

(7) Pre-completion: Form of transfer deed and formalities for execution, pre-completion searches and pre-completion steps.

(8) Completion and post-completion: Methods and effect of completion and post-completion steps.

(9) Remedies for delayed completion: Common law damages, contractual compensation, notice to complete, rescission and rescission.

(10) Structure and content of a lease: Repair, insurance, alterations, user and planning, rent and rent review, alienation, options for the term of a lease, and Code for Leasing Business Premises.

(11) Grant of a commercial lease and/or underlease: Drafting the lease, purpose of an agreement for lease, deduction of title, pre-contract enquiries and searches, pre-completion formalities, and completion and post-completion steps.

(12) Assignment of a commercial lease and/or underlease: Deduction of title, pre-contract enquiries and searches, landlord’s consent, deed of assignment and covenants for title, pre-completion formalities, authorised guarantee agreement, and completion and post-completion steps.

(13) Licence to assign and licence to underlet: Purpose of and who prepares the draft, privity of contract and how the licence deals with this, and key provisions in the licence.

(14) Key lease covenants in a commercial lease: Liability on covenants in leases (leases granted before 1 January 1996 and leases granted on or after 1 January 1996).

(15) Remedies for breach of a leasehold covenant: Action in debt, forfeiture, Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery, pursue guarantors and/or rent deposit, specific performance, damages, and self-help/Jervis v Harris clause.

(16) Termination of a lease: Effluxion of time, notice to quit, surrender and merger.

(17) Security of tenure of a business lease under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 Part II: Application of 1954 Act, renewal lease by the tenant, termination by the landlord, landlord’s grounds of opposition, terms of a new lease, and availability of compensation.

(18) Principles of planning law: Statutory definition of “Development”, matters that do not constitute “Development”, matters that do not require express planning permission, building regulation control, and Enforcement (time limits and the local planning authority’s enforcement powers).

(19) Taxation of property transactions: Stamp Duty Land Tax and Land Transaction Tax (basis of charge in both England and Wales for residential property and non-residential freehold property), Value Added Tax (basis of charge, what constitutes a taxable supply and differences between standard, exempt and zero-rated supplies, and reasons why a client would make an option to tax and the effect that has), and Capital Gains Tax (basis of charge and principal private dwelling-house exemption).

 

CORE PRINCIPLES OF LAND LAW (FLK2)

(1) Nature of Land: Distinction between real property and personal property, how to acquire and transfer legal and equitable estates, how to acquire and dispose of legal and equitable interests in land, methods to protect and enforce third party interests, different ways in which land can be held and legal formalities required to create and transfer interests and estates in land.

(2) Title to Land: Freehold and leasehold estates, registration of title to land (estates that can be substantively registered, how to protect interests, interests that override registration and interests that need to be protected on the register), core principles of unregistered title to land (role of title deeds, Land Charges and continuing role of the doctrine of notice).

(3) Co-ownership and Trusts: Differences between joint tenants and tenants in common in law and in equity, rule of survivorship, severance of joint tenancies and solving disagreements between co-owners by reference to sections 14 and 15 of Trusts of Land & Appointment of Trustees Act 1996.

(4) Easements: Essential characteristics of easements and methods for the creation of easements.

(5) Covenants: Rules for the passing of the benefit and burden of freehold covenants.

(6) Mortgages: Enforceability of terms, the priority of mortgages, lender’s powers and duties, and protection of mortgagors and other third parties with interest in the land.

(7) Leases: Relationship between landlord and tenant in a lease, essential characteristics of a lease including the difference between a lease and a licence, privity of contract and privity of estate, rules for the passing of the benefit and burden of leasehold covenants and enforceability, purpose and effect of an alienation covenant, remedies for breach of leasehold covenants (including forfeiture) and different ways a lease can be terminated.

 

CORE PRINCIPLES OF TRUST LAW (FLK2)

(1) Creation and requirements of express trusts: The three certainties of intention, subject matter and objects (fixed interest trusts and discretionary trusts), formalities to create express inter vivos trusts, and constitution of express inter vivos trusts and exceptions to the rule that equity will not assist a volunteer.

(2) Beneficial entitlement: Fixed, discretionary, vested, contingent interests and the rule in Saunders v Vautier.

(3) Charitable trusts: The distinction between charitable trusts and non-charitable purpose trusts.

(4) Resulting trusts: How they arise and when they are (or are not) presumed.

(5) Trusts of the family home: Establishment of a common intention constructive trust (legal title in the name of both parties/sole party, express declaration or agreement as to equitable ownership and direct and indirect contributions) and requirements to establish proprietary estoppel.

(6) Liability of strangers to the trust: Establishing recipient liability and accessory liability.

(7) The fiduciary relationship and its obligations: Duty not to profit from a fiduciary position, trustees not to purchase trust property and fiduciary not to put himself in a position where his interest and duty conflict.

(8) Who can be a trustee: Appointment, removal and retirement of trustees. 

(9) Trustees’ duties and powers: Trustees’ duty of care, trustees’ duty to invest (and powers in relation to investment), and trustees’ statutory powers of maintenance and advancement.

(10) Trustees’ liability: Breach of trust, measure of liability, protection of trustees and limitation period.

(11) Equitable remedies: The nature of equitable remedies and the availability of tracing in equity.

 

WILLS, INTESTACY, PROBATE AND ADMINISTRATION OF ESTATES (FLK2)

(1) Validity of wills and codicils: Testamentary capacity, duress and undue influence and formal requirements.

(2) The interpretation of the contents of a will: Effect of different types of gift and failure of gifts.

(3) Personal Representatives: The appointment of executors and renunciation and reservation of power.

(4) Alterations and amendments to wills: Effect of alterations made to wills both before and after the execution and use of codicils.

(5) Revocation of wills: Methods of revocation and effect of marriage and divorce of a testator.

(6) The intestacy rules: Section 46 of The Administration of Estates Act 1925 and the statutory trusts.

(7) Property passing outside the estate: Joint property, life policies, pension scheme benefits and trust property.

(8) Grants of representation: Need for a grant, the relevant provisions of the Non-Contentious Probate Rules, application procedure, valuation of assets and liabilities, excepted estates, methods of funding the initial payment of Inheritance Tax and burden and incidence of Inheritance Tax.

(9) Administration of estates: Personal representatives and trustees in the administration of estates and consequent trusts, the rights, powers and remedies of beneficiaries of wills and consequent trusts, duties of personal representatives, liabilities of personal representatives and their protection, the sale of assets to raise funds to pay funeral expenses, tax, debts and legacies and distribution of testate, intestate and partially intestate estates.

(10) Claims against estates financial provision: Time limit, applicants and grounds under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

 

(11) Taxation in the context of lifetime gifts and transfers on death: Inheritance Tax (lifetime transfers that are immediately chargeable and those that are potentially exempt, transfers on death, exemptions and reliefs and the scope of anti-avoidance provisions), and Income and Capital Gains Tax in respect of the period of the administration of an estate (the personal representatives’ liability to Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax and the beneficiaries’ liability to Capital Gains Tax on inherited assets).
 

 

CRIMINAL LAW AND PRACTICE (FLK2)

I. CORE PRINCIPLES OF CRIMINAL LIABILITY

(1) Specified criminal offences: Assault, battery, offences against the person under sections 47, 20 and 18 Offences Against the Person Act 1861, theft offences under sections 1, 8, 9 and 10 Theft Act 1968), simple criminal damage, aggravated criminal damage, arson, murder, voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter (unlawful act manslaughter and manslaughter by gross negligence) and fraud (by false representation, by abuse of position and by failing to disclose).

(2) Definition of the offence: Actus reus and mens rea.

(3) General defences: Intoxication and self-defence/defence of another.

(4) Partial defences: Loss of control and diminished responsibility.

(5) Parties: Principal offender, accomplices and joint enterprise.

(6) Inchoate offences: Attempt to commit an offence.

II. ADVISING CLIENTS AT THE POLICE STATION AND IN CRIMINAL LITIGATION

(1) Rights of a suspect being detained by the police for questioning: Right to legal advice, right to have someone informed of the arrest, reviews and detention time limits under PACE 1984, Code C.

(2) Identification procedures: When an identification procedure must be held, different types of identification procedure and procedure for carrying out an identification procedure PACE 1984, Code D.

(3) Advising a client, including vulnerable clients, whether to answer police questions: Right to silence and adverse inferences.

(4) Procedure for interviewing a suspect under PACE 1984: Role and appropriate conduct by defence legal representative/ solicitor, including representation of a vulnerable client, the role of appropriate adult and who can be an appropriate adult.

(5) Bail applications: The right to bail and exceptions, conditional bail, the procedure for applying for bail, further applications for bail, appeals against decisions on bail and absconding and breaches of bail.

(6) First hearings before the magistrates’ court: Classification of offences, applying for a representation order, procedural overview (what will happen at the hearing) and the role of the defence solicitor at the hearing.

(7) Plea before Venue: Procedure on defendant entering a plea and advising the client on the trial venue.

(8) Allocation of between magistrates’ court and Crown Court: Procedure ss. 19–20 and s. 22A Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 and sending without allocation s. 50A Crime and Disorder Act 1998.

(9) Case management and pre-trial hearings: Magistrates’ court case management directions, Plea and Trial Preparation Hearing and disclosure (prosecution, defence and unused material).

(10) Principles and procedures to admit and exclude evidence: Burden and standard of proof, visual identification evidence and Turnbull guidance, inferences from silence ss. 34, 35, 36, 37, 38 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, hearsay evidence (definition and grounds for admitting hearsay evidence), confession evidence (definition, admissibility and challenging admissibility ss. 76 and 78 PACE 1984), character evidence (definition of bad character, the 7 gateways s. 101(1) Criminal Justice Act 2003, the procedure for admitting bad character evidence and court’s powers to exclude bad character evidence), and exclusion of evidence (scope and application of s. 78 PACE and the right to a fair trial).

(11) Trial procedure in magistrates’ court and Crown Court: Burden and standard of proof, stages of a criminal trial, including submission of no case to answer, modes of address and Courtroom etiquette, the difference between leading and non-leading questions, competence and compellability, special measures and solicitor’s duty to the court.

(12) Sentencing: Role of sentencing guidelines, determining seriousness (aggravating and mitigating facts), concurrent and consecutive sentences, mitigation, types of sentences (custodial sentences, suspended sentences and community orders), and Newton hearings.

(13) Appeals procedure: Appeals from the magistrates’ court (procedure for appeal against conviction and/or sentence, powers of the Crown Court and appeal to the High Court by way of case stated), and appeals from the Crown Court (grounds of appeal, procedure for making the appeal and powers of the Court of Appeal). 

(14) Youth court procedure: Jurisdiction and grave crimes, allocation (youths jointly charged with adult) and sentencing (role of the Sentencing Children and Young People – definitive guidelines, referral orders, detention and training orders and youth rehabilitation orders).

 
 

IMPORTANT SOURCES