Allen & Overy becomes final magic circle firm to boost LPC maintenance grant to £10,000

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Future trainees pocket extra £3,000

Allen & Overy has upped its Legal Practice Course (LPC) maintenance grant by a cool £3,000 or 43%. Today’s money move means soon-to-be rookies at all five magic circle firms now receive £10,000.

In January, Legal Cheek exclusively revealed that both Clifford Chance and Freshfields had increased the living support it pays its future trainees during their accelerated LPCs. Not to be outdone, last week Linklaters and Slaughter and May confirmed that they will now also offer the five-figure sum. All five magic circle firms cover LPC course fees, too.

The 2018 LPC Most List

With Allen & Overy today having confirmed a 43% rise of its own, all five magic circle firms now provide £10,000 in maintenance support. The outfit — which dishes out around 90 training contracts each year — makes clear that future trainees who started their LPC in January will also benefit from the increase.

Claire Wright, graduate recruitment partner at Allen & Overy, said:

“We’re increasing our LPC maintenance grant in recognition of the fact that living costs have increased and as part of our overall commitment to social mobility. We have a responsibility to ensure our profession is attractive and accessible to talented people who have the potential to succeed. We don’t want financial considerations to be a barrier to entry.”

Legal Cheek‘s recent coverage of the firms’ grant increases has triggered a fiery debate below the line.

One reader argued in favour of means testing as “it isn’t fair for the richest candidates to have an extra £10K when they might not even need it” — as another commenter demonstrated:

“I knew a girl from London whose parents bought her a flat in Old Street so she could walk to Moorgate LPC, she still took the full grant and also went on holiday with it at the end, nice work if you can get it!”

But not everyone agreed. One commenter fired back: “Oh come on. Next you’ll be saying salaries should be means tested as some people are more in need… Life isn’t fair but it isn’t your employer’s job to start sorting out inequalities in society through reward.”

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Here’s a fairer system:

– £5,000 – everyone
+ £2,000 – those whose parents earn between £30,000 and £60,000
+ £5,000 – those whose parents earn under £30,000
+ £2,000 – ethnic minorities
+ £2,000 – LGBTQ+



Would be hard to prevent people taking advantage of the LGBTQ+ perk though.



This is the fairest system:

– £0 – everyone
+ £2,000,000 – Katie King (so she can create her own legal blog).



Your idea is an absolutely ridiculous system and in no ways fairer than what is currently in place.



I sincerely hope that the upvotes are the result of amusement rather than agreement.



Obvious troll is obvious



+£10,000,000 for my cousin Sandy



You could be a gay, ethnic minority student but come from a millionaire family that can fund your LPC. This system is a bit random…. As ‘further education’, a grant system could mirror that of the university (which is not based on sexuality or ethnicity). However, as a few of my friend found coming from families with lots of children who just pass the quota, it isn’t as clear-cut as you make out. Giving everyone the same is fair. Following your suggestion would leave scope for people to constantly be deemed a dependant on their parents. I do agree, however, that other firms should also up the salary. Whilst there is potential scope to work, this neglects alternate obligations. Also, its about time the gap between other London and MC firms are made up. It is merely a name after all.



Why would you want to create resentment amongst the ethnic and sexual majorities towards the ethnic and sexual minorities by treating them differently?

‘Positive’ discrimination is discrimination, ‘positive’ racism is racism and ‘positive’ sexism is sexism. You can’t pick and choose if you really believe in people being treated equally.



What has what people’s parents earn got to do with it? Just because someones parents earn above a set amount, it doesn’t mean they’re going to be in a position or willing to help.



Wish I could’ve seen those greedy partners SQUIRM when their rivals were raising grants. Delicious stuff.






They did it a while ago



And yet their NQs still get robbed on qualification… £81,000 are starvation wages.



This is great. The grants have been static for quite some time and the cost of living/transport in London has significantly grown.

This is genuinely good for social mobility- people without rich parents who don’t have the option to live rent-free or low-rent in London/surrounds will really struggle on 7k and only get into more debt.

Of course you can point at people with the financial support or privileges but the whole point of social mobility is to capture people who can’t. I’d rather poor people benefit like this and richer people just have a bit extra than the rich people affording it and the poor not having a way in.



Agree. The difference between £7k and £10k is vast – 7 is almost impossible to live on in London for 6 months whereas 10 is perfectly doable.



Wow. Someone suggests people should get more money because of the colour of their skin – and people applaud it.

Why racism and bigotry suddenly become ok when they’re against white people or straight people, I just don’t understand…



This post has been removed because it breached Legal Cheek’s comments policy.



Still waiting for the other London firms to up it…. Any sign this is going to happen in the near future?





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