find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Corporate Lawyer
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· 12 months fixed term opportunity
View details
Property lawyer - Melbourne
Category: Property Law | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Impressive client list, national firm · Well-led and high-performing team
View details
The ‘old boys club’ just went digital

The ‘old boys club’ just went digital


High-flying legal professionals have been caught using a controversial website,, to find short-term work experience for their teenage kids.

The website, launched last year, pitches itself as the “new old boys network” and connects professionals wanting to trade work experience placements for their children.

British barrister Julian Christopher QC recently posted an offer to exchange work experience at his chambers, 5 Paper Buildings, for an equivalent opportunity for his 17-year-old son.

5 Paper Buildings has a strict application procedure for prospective pupils. Mr Christopher told Legal Cheek he was not intending to bypass this process and later deleted the post.

Mr Christopher is not alone is using the website; Legal Cheek found offers from lawyers at major international law firms and The Guardian found offers from employees at the BBC, ITV, HSBC, Ted Baker, an embassy and even the Royal Navy.

The BBC told The Guardian it is committed to equal opportunity and does not permit work experience placements to be organised through the website.

Folklaw has no doubt well-connected parents pull all the strings they can find to build their kids the best resumes, but this website uses technology to unreasonably extend this power and crush social mobility.

The website allows parents to reach out beyond their golf club-private school-work colleague network and reduce their professional success and social clout to a transaction.

How is a child without a posh parent supposed to break into a high-paying industry when the all-important work experience is being monopolised by the offspring of the nauseatingly privileged?

Folklaw could see only three offers from Australian professionals on the website, but the founder, Nick Simmons, has said 700 offers across 40 countries have been made so far.

The website charges £24 for an annual subscription, but Mr Simmons has said less-advantaged students will soon be able to use the for free. Folklaw is not entirely convinced this small concession will collapse all those class divides the website just helped reinforce.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

The ‘old boys club’ just went digital
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Aug 23 2017
NT Law Society sounds alarm on mandatory sentencing
The Law Society Northern Territory has issued a warning over mandatory sentencing, saying it hasn’...
Aug 22 2017
Professionals unite in support of marriage equality
The presidents of representative bodies for solicitors, barristers and doctors in NSW have come toge...
Aug 21 2017
Is your firm on the right track for gig economy gains?
Promoted by The way we do business, where we work, how we engage with workers, even how we take a...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...