Meet The Solicitors With Second Jobs As Writers For Essay Companies That Target Students

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Yesterday, we brought you news of an essay-writing company that pays LPC and BPTC graduates just £43 per 1,000 words.

After publishing the story, we were alerted to a case study of ‘Natasha’, a solicitor who apparently works Saturdays for the essay-writing company in question, which is called Academic Knowledge.

During the week, Natasha works full-time for “a really great firm” which unfortunately pays her very little.

Here’s what she has to say:

“My name is Natasha and I am a qualified solicitor, working in private practice for around a year and a half now. I work for a really great firm and as any new lawyer will tell you, this means that competition to work there is really stiff. The junior fee earners get paid a fair amount less than most of the secretaries because the HR department know they will get dozens of really strong applicants every time they advertise a job. I therefore work part time for Academic Knowledge as a freelance writer to supplement my income.

As my job at my firm is full time, I fit around five hours a week in at the weekend, usually Saturday morning to early afternoon. There is a little work to do in between – looking out for briefs that interest me and keeping an eye on emails from the company – but on the whole I can get this done within minutes and focus my efforts at the weekends.” (The full case study is here – thanks to journalist Frank Webster for the tip.)

Academic Knowledge isn’t the only essay-writing company that says it employs practising lawyers. Oxbridge Essays, a division of which provides a service assisting students with their training contract and pupillage application forms, claims to be able to call upon “magic circle-trained lawyers”. Unlike ‘Natasha’, these lavishly remunerated City types don’t need the money. Instead, Oxbridge Essays’ head of sales, John Foster, puts their involvement down to “altruism”.


Uncle Solicitor

In many other jurisdictions around the common law world a barrister or solicitor undertaking wholesale and direct assistance to a student by writing, writing for, correcting or editing an essay – which is later represented by the student as being his or her own work – is a matter for disciplinary bodies, suspensions and striking off as necessary.

This is the case especially where the lawyer knows that the essay being written or corrected will be adopted or used by the student. It certainly makes the system unfair to all of the other students – if not one approaching a fraudulent exercise.

If we were to live in a society where professionals could do part of the work of a student’s examination or assessment (one that would ordinarily be expected to be undertaken by the student to measure his or her abilities). planes would fall out of the sky, surgeons would make more mistakes, electricians would leave their handiwork live (leading to electrocutions), and lawyers would fail to meet the standards demanded of them by clients and society at large. In short, it would not be all that different from the corruption in education that takes place in the Far East and other places around the world.

This is not a good practice and no practicing lawyer should participate in it. Time for some whiskey – Miss Murphy – Bring me the Nikka!


Troy Codnee

Solicitors should not be writing essays for anyone. Surely they did enough of that when they were at their legal university and doing it for themselves.

I have never heard of Nikka whiskey. I completely agree that everyone should be properly qualified to do what they do. Especially plumbers, fairground workers, ballerinas and HGV drivers.


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