Andreea Deac is the Managing Directory of accountancy practice firm Lexarox Accounts. She established the company in 2013 to support Europeans coming over to the UK. Concerned that she didn't have enough legal knowledge to run her business to her full potential, she decided to study our LPC and LLM. On completing her studies, she applied for an internship in New York. Whilst there, she decided to sit the US Bar Exam.
How did you first become interested in law?
I first became interested in law when I thought about the saying “knowledge is power”, as knowing the law is a type of superpower.
I moved to the UK when I was 21 from an Eastern European country. I soon became frustrated as I didn’t know my rights or my responsibilities and I had to learn everything the hard way. In 2013, I decided to open a business, and whilst it was going in the right direction, I was very anxious, wondering “what if I’m doing something wrong?”. I tried searching for information online, I read a lot and asked questions, and I tried to find the right people to explain things to me. I soon realised that the ocean of information was too big, and I wasn’t able to find the answers I was after. I thought about hiring a lawyer for a consult but, apart from the fact that lawyers charge very high fees for one hour, I soon realised that one individual lawyer would not be able to answer all of my questions. That was the moment I decided to enrol at The University of Law and learn how to find the answers myself.
What made you decide to go to New York and take the Bar Exam?
I enjoyed studying law and realised that I could consider a career in the legal field, so after graduating with an LLM & LPC degree in business law, I decided to apply for an internship abroad instead of doing two years training in the UK. New York is a common law jurisdiction and I found the idea of working and living there very exciting. After a few interviews with various law firms, I was accepted to do my internship at a commercial law firm in Manhattan. It was such a lovely experience and I’m very happy that I took this decision. By the end of my internship, I was thinking about what I should do next. The firm I worked for had already offered me a position, but I was not completely ready to leave behind my life in London. Plus, if I was to remain in that firm, I would have been a paralegal as I was not licensed to practice law in New York at that point. My options were to go back to the UK and find a two year training contract to qualify as a solicitor in a competitive market; or to register for the New York Bar Exam, skip the two year training contract and qualify faster. I decided to go for the New York Bar.
What are the benefits of becoming a US attorney?
Becoming a US attorney is a very prestigious profession, so there are plenty of benefits (not to imply that UK lawyers do not hold the same level of standard in their field). In my opinion, there is much more to experience in the legal field in the US, as there are more options and opportunities to get qualified in various jurisdictions. If you pass the bar exam in one state, depending on your exam score, you can transfer to another jurisdiction and practice law in other states or territories without resitting the exam. Additional to the freedom of practicing your profession in multiple states, licensed lawyers in the US tend to secure higher pay than UK lawyers. Another benefit is that the US is a bigger and more international market than the UK, potentially offering you more options to choose where you want to work.
What are your career goals for the next year?
My goal for the next year is to get admitted to the New York Bar, as my admission is currently pending. I also hope to then start providing services as an attorney on a freelance basis for companies in the US.
How have your past experiences and qualifications prepared you for your career goals?
The internship I did in New York helped me imagine what my life would look like having a career as an attorney in US. My studies at The University of Law, especially the LPC, were incredibly useful in preparing me for my career goals because I consider myself an entrepreneur and I can work independently without supervision. This is the reason why my main goal is to provide services on a freelance basis and not as an employee, which I’m very confident about.
What piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to qualify as a US attorney?
If you are an ambitious person and hungry for knowledge and experience, then you must take this challenge and go for it. You will gain an enormous amount of self-confidence and self-achievement, which for me was incomparable.
Interested in studying for the US Bar Exam? Find out more about our US Bar Prep Course.