Herbert Smith Freehills reveals 94% autumn retention following post-Brexit pay boost

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31 out of 33 qualifying trainees to stay with global giant


Herbert Smith Freehills has revealed an impressive autumn retention figure of 94%, just one month after handing out a chunky post-Brexit pay increase to its junior lawyers.

The global outfit confirmed that 31 trainees — out of a pool of 33 — applied for full-time associate positions. All 31 newbies received offers and accepted them.

Today’s announcement means Herbies has matched its spring performance. On that occasion the firm held on to 33 trainees from a cohort of 35.

Just last month Herbies — which has 23 offices in 18 different countries — became one of the first City firms to announce a post referendum pay boost for its junior legal talent.

With the likes of Berwin Leighton Paisner, Gowling WLG and Addleshaw Goddard freezing lawyer pay and pointing the finger firmly at Brexit, Herbies opted to wave two fingers at it instead. Last month the firm chucked an improved remuneration package at its newly qualified (NQ) lawyers that could see them walk away with as much £90,000 including bonuses.

Elsewhere this retention season, Anglo-German powerhouse Freshfields trumpeted an impressive trainee retention rate of 95%. Meanwhile, City outfits Mishcon de Reya and Fieldfisher posted perfect 100% retention scores.