Vacancies in family law practices grew by 47% to the end of April 2017 in the UK regions, with an increase in probate lawyer vacancies of 56% over the 12-month period.
That’s according to data from the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo), which also revealed that while Real Estate continues to be the largest practice area in terms of vacancies across the UK, it also had the largest percentage fall in new openings to April 2017, down by 27%, year on year.
Within the specialist practice area, the figures showed a 23% increase, with 14 out of 20 sector practices showing a growth in demand.
Vacancies within both private practice (11%) and non-legal practice (16.6%) fell in the 12-month period ending 30 April 2016, despite a slight recovery in the sector figures during Q1 of 2017. The figures also found that during April, there were 27% fewer private practice vacancies compared to March, which was 19% fewer than in April 2016.
Ann Swain, Chief Executive of APSCo, commented on the figures, saying: “Overall, these figures show that there are mixed fortunes within the legal and non-legal practice sector. It’s interesting to note the high growth in probate lawyers during the year; this may have been linked to the proposed changes to probate fees which have now been rescinded by the government, ahead of the general election.
“Elsewhere, the figures are showing a dip across both legal and non-legal practices and this is also reflected within Greater London (down 32%) and Scotland (down 34%) both experiencing a decline, with lawyers hit particularly hard. However, there is a welcome bright spot to be found in the north east of England where there was a 31% increase in the number of vacancies, which equated to 32 new jobs, within private practice.”