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Are you a solicitor??

A number of years ago the legal profession was opened up so that people other than solicitors and barrister could practice. This resulted in a number of new professions being created, you may have heard of licensed conveyancers and legal executives. The reason for this change was to allow a wider variety of people to attain a career in the law.

When Kelly was eighteen she decided she could not go to University. She was from a single parent family and had two younger sisters so money was tight. Instead she went to secretarial school and trained to be a legal secretary. Following this she found a job in a law firm and began her career. She started as a junior legal secretary and worked her way to being a partner's secretary. Whilst she was working she enjoyed herself so much she decided she wanted to progress further so started a course with the Institute of Legal Executives and began her training. She worked and learned on the job. Finally, in 2005 she passed all of her exams and because she had been working for more than five years was admitted as a Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives. During her study time she spent three years learning a mix of legal subjects, two years studying estate administration, one year studying trust and equity law and a further year studying land law. When she qualified she inherited her first case load and off she went!

She didn't stop there though. She was the first person who started as a legal secretary in her firm (at the time) who was made an associate and the former legal secretary to be made a partner. Not bad for a girl who grew up in apple orchards! She qualified as a member of Solicitors for the Elderly and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. She completed her law degree when she was 35 whilst working full time and was one of the first three people in the country to achieve the Probate Practitioner's accreditation from the CILEx regulatory authority.

In 2014 she founded Argo Life & Legacy and has been happily running her own practice, her own way ever since.

So, the answer to the question is no, Kelly is not a solicitor. This is not because she knows less than a solicitor or is less qualified. She does not want to be a solicitor because of all the help and support that her regulatory and training body have given her along the way. She believes in Legal Executives and giving those who want a chance to be a lawyer. She believes in breaking the traditional rules and being different. She believes in a level playing field of opportunity and that those who work and study hard should be rewarded for what they achieve.

We don't mind that Kelly is not a solicitor because there is only one Kelly, and she works at Argo!

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