The Legal Cheek View
Formed from the 2014 merger of Charles Russell and Speechly Bircham, Charles Russell Speechlys is now the biggest private client firm in Britain with offices in London, Guildford and Cheltenham. The firm also has a presence in high net worth individual hubs such as Geneva, Zurich, Luxembourg, Paris, Doha and Manama. For law students who fancy a career brushing shoulders with the global elite, this is a good place to start.
Charles Russell Speechlys (or CRS for short) scores well in the ‘training’ category in the Legal Cheek Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey, with insiders reporting that the grounding they receive is very good. Alongside private client work, trainees also often get to sample the firm’s specialisms in media law, technology law and general commercial work.
While generally A-grade, the quality of work is said to “vary greatly from department to department”. Meanwhile, partners are said to be generally nice, if not super-approachable, and the vibe among the trainees is largely positive and inclusive.
CRS doesn’t offer great perks, but the money is pretty good for a private client outfit and the secondment opportunities impressive. Nearly 30% of trainees and junior lawyers have spent time abroad with the firm.
For some, escaping the London office is a relief, with one insider complaining about a lack of natural light and a branding the air con “a real problem”. Another barks: “Major upgrade of office showers required”. With profit per equity partner up by 23% this year to a healthy £393,000, there is speculation that this could be the moment for such improvements.