State ProsecutorJob Description:
State prosecutors make sure that decisions to bring people to court are fair and likely to succeed.Job Category:
What you will do:
You’ll work with other prosecutors, caseworkers and administrative staff.
Your day-to-day duties might include:
- checking facts and documents for each case
- deciding if there’s enough evidence to convict
- advising which charges are suitable
- explaining decisions to defence lawyers, witnesses, the police and other agencies
- deciding if evidence is reliable and can be used in court
- preparing the case for the prosecution
- making sure relevant evidence is put before the court
- presenting the case to a panel of magistrates or judges, or to a judge and jury, depending on the court
- questioning the defendant and witnesses
- summing up the case for the prosecution
- training other prosecutors and caseworkers
- legal knowledge including court procedures and government regulations
- analytical thinking skills
- the ability to read English
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently
As well as:
- excellent verbal communication skills (leadership skills)
- active listening skills
- excellent written communication skills
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail (organisational skills)
- the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
- developing critical thinking skills is essential for analyzing legal issues and constructing persuasive arguments.
To become a state prosecutor in the UK, specific GCSE subjects are not mandatory. However, certain subjects can provide a foundation of skills and knowledge that may be beneficial for pursuing a career in law and prosecution, such as:
- English Language: Strong communication skills, both written and verbal, are essential for lawyers and prosecutors to present cases and arguments effectively.
- History or Citizenship: Studying history or citizenship can provide insights into the legal system, political structures, and how the justice system operates.
- Mathematics: Basic math skills can be helpful for understanding financial aspects of legal cases and dealing with statistics or data relevant to certain cases.
While specific GCSE subjects can be beneficial, becoming a state prosecutor typically involves higher education and specialized training. Here are the steps you would generally take:
A Levels (or equivalent)
After completing your GCSEs, you would typically take A Levels or equivalent qualifications in subjects such as Law, English Literature, History, or Politics. These subjects are commonly required for admission to law-related degree programs.
Pursue a qualifying law degree (LLB) or a degree in a related subject, followed by the Legal Practice Course (LPC) or Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) to become a solicitor or barrister, respectively.
Complete a period of legal training, such as a training contract (for solicitors) or pupillage (for barristers).
Seek internships or work placements in legal settings, including prosecuting agencies or law firms, to gain practical experience in criminal law and prosecution.
Qualify as a Solicitor or Barrister
Complete the necessary qualifications and training to become a solicitor or barrister, depending on your preferred career path in prosecution.
Apply for Prosecution Roles
After qualifying, apply for positions with prosecuting agencies or government bodies involved in criminal prosecution.Becoming a state prosecutor requires strong analytical skills, a sense of justice, and the ability to work with complex legal matters. It’s also essential to maintain high ethical standards and adhere to the principles of fairness and impartiality. By pursuing the right educational and professional pathway, you can work towards a fulfilling career as a state prosecutor in the UK legal system.
Working Hours and Environment:
You’ll work 37 hours a week on a rota system, including weekends and public holidays.
Most of the cases you work on will be in magistrates’ courts. You could also work from home.
Career Path & Progression:
With experience and further training you could progress to senior crown prosecutor.
From there you could become crown advocate, senior crown advocate and principal crown advocate.