A new pathway  

The CILEX Professional Qualification (CPQ) has been developed based on our insights into the changing skills, knowledge and behaviours that legal professionals need to demonstrate. 

As a current trainee, you are guaranteed the chance to take advantage of the benefits that the introduction of CPQ offers, should you wish to. Detailed guidance on how you will be able to transition to CPQ will be made available in 2021, as soon as CPQ receives full regulatory approval. In the meantime, we encourage you to continue with the course of study you are on, as the current qualification pathways are being kept open according to the timetable outlined below (the "transition period"), and routes to CILEX Lawyer will still be open to you:

  • July 2023 for Level 3 assessments (with a November 2023 resit session only)
  • July 2026 for Level 6 assessments (with a November 2026 resit session only)

To enable smooth transition to CPQ, if this is the choice you wish to make, please read the below guidance carefully.

Level 3 Students

Level 6 Students

Paralegal Apprentices

Chartered Legal Executive Apprentices

The guidance is given subject to regulatory approval, and students are advised to refer back here from time to time to check for updates.


Level 3 Students

As detailed above, your option to complete Level 3 is open during the transition period. At that stage, you may continue to complete Level 6, or transition to CPQ. 

If you choose to transition to CPQ, we expect you to be eligible for exemptions from CPQ Foundation stage modules if you have completed the following Level 3 units, or combination of units:

Level 3 units

CPQ Foundation exemptions

Introduction to Law & Practice

Legal Systems

Client Care Skills and Legal Research Skills

Professional & Legal Skills

Contract Law

Contract Law

Law of Tort


Land Law and Conveyancing

Property & Private Client

Completion of these units in their entirety should enable full exemption from the CPQ Foundation stage module assessments. Trainees transitioning to CPQ Advanced stage will still need to complete Ethics and Professional Responsibility module 1 in addition to the full requirements for CPQ Advanced stage. 

Back to the top

Paralegal apprentices:

If you are currently on a paralegal apprenticeship programme, you will have the option once you have completed your programme to transition to CPQ. 

The paralegal end-point assessment (EPA) will entitle you to the following exemptions from CPQ Foundation stage: 

All pathways: 

Legal Systems

Professional and Legal Skills

Professional experience

Subject pathways:

Paralegal Apprenticeship Pathway

CPQ Foundation exemptions

Contract Law/Civil Litigation

Contract Law

Tort/Civil Litigation

Law of Tort


Introduction to Property and Private Client



Private Client






Where your apprenticeship studies do not lead to an exemption at CPQ Foundation stage, they may nonetheless still help towards the study of the related modules at CPQ Advanced stage. 

Note that the final exam dates detailed above still apply. 

Back to the top

Level 6 Students

As detailed above, you may continue on your current course of study during the transition period. On completion of Level 6 Diploma you will progress to Fellowship and CILEX Lawyer using the current arrangements.

Should you wish to transition to CPQ, you should gain a module exemption from CPQ Advanced stage if you have completed any one of the following Law and corresponding Practice unit combinations: 

Level 6 Law unit                

Level 3 or 6 Practice unit                        

CPQ Advanced stage exemptions

Contract Law/Tort

Level 3 or Level 6 Civil Litigation

Dispute Resolution

Criminal Law

Level 3 or Level 6 Criminal Litigation

Criminal Law & Practice

Land Law

Level 3 or Level 6 Conveyancing

Property & Conveyancing

Family Law

Level 3 or Level 6 Practice of Family Law

Family Law & Practice

Law of Wills & Succession

Level 3 or Level 6 Probate Practice

Wills, Probate & Private Client

Company & Partnership Law

Level 3 Employment Practice or Level 6 Practice of Company & Partnership Law

Business & Employment

Trainees registering directly into CPQ Advanced stage will also need to complete both Ethics & Professional Responsibility modules and the Professional Experience requirement for CPQ Advanced stage before being able to progress to CPQ Professional stage.

As detailed above, you may continue on your current course of study during the transition period. On completion of Level 6 Diploma you will progress to Fellowship and CILEX Lawyer using the current arrangements.

Back to the top

Chartered Legal Executive Apprentices

Chartered Legal Executive Apprentices will become CILEX Fellows and Chartered Legal Executives on completion of their programme. In order to progress to full CILEX Lawyer status, they should acquire practice rights using the CPD route that is under development. 

Back to the top