• Duration: 120 minutes (dependent on variations during listening test)

  • Skills tested: Legal reading, writing and drafting, knowledge of register and business idiom

  • Score: the maximum score is 500

  • Focus: Practical reading, writing and drafting skills in authentic legal situations

  • General English level: Good knowledge of English language (C1) is required

  • Certificate: TOLES Advanced with grae edxplanation


The TOLES Advanced Exam is the third step – also the final step in successful professional development with TOLES. It was created and then developed in consultation with leading commercial law firms and is considered to be the gold standard of legal English achievement. Since its creation, it has been trusted by legal employers everywhere as a measure of a lawyer’s commercial legal English skills rather than her or his academic legal English skills. As the score of TOLES Advanced is different from TOLES Foundation and Higher, there is a clear explanation for each score band:

  • GREEN (0-100): This candidate may well have a good knowledge of general English but is assessed as having ONLY BASIC Legal English.

  • BLUE (101-200): This candidate probably has an above average level of general English and is assessed as having APPROACHING SATISFACTORY legal English skills.

  • PURPLE (201-300): This candidate has good general English skills and is assessed as having SATISFACTORY legal English skills.

  • RED (301-400): This candidate has well-above average English skills and GOOD legal English skills.

  • ORANGE (401-450): This candidate has very good general English skills and is assessed as having VERY GOOD legal English skills.

  • GOLD (451-500): This candidate has excellent general English skills and is assessed as having EXCELLENT legal English skills.


The exam has one paper: legal reading and writing. The exam measures a candidate’s skills against a native English-speaking lawyer through a test. The candidates who score very well at Advanced level have a strong grasp of technical legal vocabulary, as well as showing an appreciation of the huge importance of absolute accuracy when working in law. The exam also requires an understanding of how formal and informal English is used in a professional workplace and sensitivity to register.


The TOLES Advanced has a heavy focus on the grammar and vocabulary required for contract drafting. Knowledge of international legal terminology, commercial awareness and sensitivity to use of register in various legal documents are also essential skills assessed in the TOLES Advanced exam.

The exam requires international legal terminology, knowledge of essential, a mastery of complex grammar and complete sensitivity to use of register in the following general areas:

  • Basic legal negotiations

  • Pre-contractual documents

  • Commercial contracts

  • Banking

  • Companies

  • Other forms of business

  • Bankruptcy and insolvency

  • Employment law and contracts

  • The litigation process

  • Essential contract law

  • The law of tort

  • Intellectual property

  • Real estate

  • Oral contracts

  • An introduction to the common law

  • Letter writing skills


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