The Rules

Download a pdf of the rules here.

1. Essays must be submitted by email with “FSLA Competition Essay 2020” in the subject line to essay@fsla.org.uk by midnight GMT on Sunday 10 January 2021.

No entries after this date will be accepted for the competition. The organisers accept no responsibility for delivery or for subsequent safekeeping of any essay entered for the competition.

2. The essay should be attached in Word (or equivalent) format to the email and the attachment should be named as follows: “FSLA Essay Competition 2020”.

3. The essay competition is open to anyone who satisfies any one or more of the following criteria when they submit their essay:

a. a person who is studying as an undergraduate or postgraduate student in any legal discipline registered with a UK educational institution; or

b. a person who is undergoing, or is preparing to undergo, any period of legal professional training (such as a training contract, pupillage or legal apprenticeship) with a view to qualifying as a lawyer.

4. Only one entry per person will be allowed for each annual competition.

5. The essay must be the sole creation and original work of that person. No previously published work will be accepted. Any form of plagiarism will result in immediate disqualification. All essays submitted will be closely checked for plagiarism. Entrants are expected already to be aware of any plagiarism guidance and policies of the academic and professional training institutions to which they currently belong or have belonged.

6. The judges’ decisions on any awarding of any prize in the competition will be final and is not subject to any appeal. Essays will be judged on the quality of legal analysis, and not on judges’ views as to the merits of the wider issue.

7. Any essay submitted should conform to the following rules as to content, length and style:

The essay should begin with a cover page stipulating the author’s full name, address, contact details (including email address), word count (see 7a. below) and details as to how they meet the eligibility criteria in paragraph 3 above. No essay should thereafter contain the author’s name in either header or footer text within the essay.

a. The essay must be of no more than 1,500 words (including footnotes but not including the cover page). Entrants should set out the word count on the cover page.

b. The essay should be in Word (or equivalent) (i.e. not PDF), typed with double line spacing and contain page numbers.

c. The essay should use the OSCOLA referencing system. Any cases or statutes referred to in any essay should be fully cited the first time that they are used.

8. First prize is £2,000.  Second prize is £1,250. Third prize is £1,000. FSLA reserves the right to substitute any prize for another within their absolute discretion without notice.

FSLA reserves the right to withhold the award of any or all prizes offered if in their absolute discretion if no essay entered warrants the award of any or all prize(s).

9. Prize-winners are entitled to refer to the achievement on their CV.

10. FSLA reserves the right to publish or reproduce any or all of any essay entered for the competition. In reproducing any essay FSLA reserves the right to omit, alter, paraphrase or delete any part of that essay in their absolute discretion for any reason.

11. FSLA reserves the right to cancel the competition for any reason and at any time.

12. The decision of the FSLA Executive Committee on the interpretation of these rules will be final.