There are currently thousands of opportunities in the legal sector, making it the perfect career path for smart, switched-on individuals who want to make a difference.
We offer a range of benefits that will help anyone in the legal finance and management sector.
By undertaking the ILFM’s training or qualifications, members will open up new opportunities on their career path.
Through the ILFM members will learn the techniques in preparing, presenting financial management information in a law firm as well as the basic day-to-day operations in a compliant legal finance department. We will be available for you for help, support and questions you may have.
Members can choose to gain qualifications in legal finance & practice management to further their career.
Ordinary Member: The qualifications for admission as an Ordinary Member shall be: 1) the intention to pursue and study the profession and learn the basic principles of legal cashiering and/or administration within a legal practice; 2) in addition to all the above requirements he shall satisfy the Executive Council as to his general character, experience and suitability for admission. Ordinary members may attend and speak but not vote at general meetings of the Institute.
This is attained by the successful completion of two 3-hour examinations one on each of the 2 papers that are designed to assess a sound working knowledge of basic legal accounts and the Solicitors accounts rules. Diploma members may use the designatory letters ILFM (Dip). A Diploma Member may attend, vote and speak at general meetings of the Institute.
This requires successful completion of three examination papers which assess the students’ knowledge and understanding of both legal and accounting topics, together with three years' relevant experience in legal accounting. Associate members may use the designatory letters AILFM. An Associate Member may attend, vote and speak at general meetings of the Institute.
This is the highest level of membership and is attained by Associate members undertaking a Fellowship Thesis on a subject approved by the ILFM's Strategy Committee, together with five years' relevant experience in legal accounting. Fellow members may use the designatory letters FILFM. A Fellow may attend, vote and speak at general meetings of the Institute.
Affiliated professional member
The qualification for admission as an Affiliated Professional Member shall be membership of a relevant professional bodies as determined by the Executive Council from time to time. This category is for members of other professional accountancy bodies - such as chartered/certified accountants, solicitors, suppliers to the legal sector such as software suppliers etc. Affiliated Professional Members may enjoy such benefits as the Executive Committee may determine from time to time and shall have the right to attend and speak but not vote at general meetings of the Institute.
What is legal finance and accounting?
Law firms or legal providers that offer legal services are regulated (e.g. by the Solicitors Regulation Authority) to maintain the public trust and the ethical delivery of legal services. Solicitors often receive and hold their client’s money as part of a legal service e.g. buying a house. There are prescriptive governance rules to ensure the protection of these client monies whilst being held by a solicitor. When receiving client funds the funds must be held in a “client” account. The Solicitors Accounts Rules 2011 set out the detailed treatment and rules that must be followed in dealing with client monies.
The rules are very specific and unique.
What is a legal cashier?
A Legal Cashier is a specialist type of bookkeeper who works in law firms and is responsible for the accounting and finance functions of a solicitor's practice such as recording day-to-day financial transactions and ensuring compliance with the Solicitors' Accounts Rules. The term "Legal Cashier" is in common use within the legal profession in England and Wales. Nearly all firms that transact client money will have a legal cashier, or in larger firms, a team of cashiers. They are a pivotal role in a law firm.
Isn’t the legal sector for solicitors?
If you are interested in working in the legal industry, but not interested in becoming a solicitor and practising law, there is a unique opportunity to develop or start a career in the business management and accounting of a law firm.
Can I enter the legal sector?
The legal sector is a specialist profession and area of business. If you have changed career and are now thinking of working in the legal sector the ILFM can offer training and qualifications in legal accounting, financial management and practice management so you understand the workings of a law firm.
Do you offer continuous support?
The changing landscape of the legal industry means it is important to keep up to date with best practice, compliance and solutions to those day-to-day problems. We offer qualifications to add to your experience and the support to keep on top of legal management topics.
I want to start a career in accountancy
Are you considering an accountancy qualification but wonder if you are quite ready? The ILFM qualifications can be an important step in the path to a full accountancy qualification with our exemptions with CIMA and ACCA. Read more about our exemptions.
How do I book onto a training course?
Non-members can book onto our training days, however, our members get a 35% discount, so it’s beneficial to become a member if you’re serious about your new career and plan to go on to undertake more courses. Join today