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Berwin Leighton Paisner hit by claim that it doctored trainee retention rate

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City law firm says three unaccounted for trainees “didn’t get to the offer stage”

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Claims have surfaced this morning that Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) fudged its spring retention rate to give a more favourable result than it actually achieved.

Last week the firm announced that it was retaining 14 out of 20 trainees, but today legal blog RollOnFriday has reported that BLP had 23 qualifying trainees — three more than it had disclosed.

If correct, the firm’s retention wouldn’t be the 70% which it had claimed but actually an even less impressive 61%. Or put another way: a whopping 39% of BLP’s spring qualifier trainees quit the firm.

When Legal Cheek got in touch with BLP this morning the firm told us that the three unaccounted for trainees “didn’t get to the offer stage”.

“They dropped out of process before then,” the BLP spokesperson added.

The firm declined to go into any further detail about the mysterious trio, who are understood to have been in their final seat when they quit the firm.