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Allen & Overy bumps trainee pay as it reveals 89% autumn retention score

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£46,500 in year one, rising to £52,500 in year two

Allen & Overy (A&O) has upped the salaries of its trainee by as much as 5%, as the magic circle player confirmed 39 of its 44 newly-qualifying (NQ) lawyers were staying put.

The firm’s first year rookies will now earn a salary of £46,500, up £1,500 or 3% from £45,000, while salaries in year two now sit at £52,500, up £2,500 or 5% from £50,000.

The move comes just days after fellow magic circle player Clifford Chance upped trainee pay to £48,000 and £54,000, respectively.

Magic circle trainee salary standings:

Firm Trainee pay (Year 1) Trainee pay (Year 2)
Clifford Chance £48,000 £54,000
Linklaters £47,000 £52,500
Allen & Overy £46,500 £52,500
Freshfields £45,000 £51,000
Slaughter and May £45,000 £51,000

At the same time, A&O confirmed an autumn retention score of 89% (39 out of 44). The firm, which recruits roughly 90 trainees each year, received 43 applications and made 40 offers.

James Partridge, graduate recruitment partner at A&O, said:

“This is a great retention rate and reflects the quality of junior lawyers we have coming through the ranks and our commitment to training and retaining the very best legal talent. I’d like to congratulate all of our new qualifiers and look forward to watching their careers progress.”

The 2019 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

Legal Cheek’s Firms Most List shows that A&O’s NQs will start on a recently improved pay package of roughly £100,000, comprised of salary and a “sign-on bonus”.

Yesterday, Freshfields posted an autumn retention score of 93%, confirming 38 of its 41 soon-to-be associates were staying put post-qualification. Clifford Chance confirmed last month it had retained 87% of its soon-to-be associations (41 out of 47), while Slaughter and May revealed a 93% result (37 out of 40). Linklaters posted a score of 91% (49 out of 54).

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45 Comments

Anonymous

What about Dechert?

Anonymous

lmao

Anonymous

I hope the trainee compensation goes up before I start.

Anonymous

Propa shet

Anonymous

What part of that Salary amounts to bonus? Is there a bonus?

Anonymous

It’s just a salary lol. Most trainees at UK firms don’t get bonuses (or, if they do, get a fixed one of something like a grand). Stop overanalysing it.

Anonymous

I got a bonus. Every trainee I know in other firms got a bonus.

Stop chatting shit pal.

US NQ

No bonuses at my firm, despite being one of top NQ payers. Can understand why a trainee wouldn’t get a bonus as they have limited control over their billable hours.

Anonymous

My firm pays trainee bonuses, as does every firm that I know of. Also, try upping that figure x3.

Anonymous

Over-analysing? It is a common sense question to ask.

Anonymous

Reed Smith is better lol

Anonymous

Whats this joke?

Reed Smith 2nd year

Reed Smith is a fantastic firm. Strong across all meaningful city practice areas, in real growth mode, top US whack and nice offices.

Anonymous

Just LOL. Shet corporate, shet finance = shet firm.

Anonymous

Care to elaborate? Hate to give it to him, but anon correctly notes their corporate and finance teams aren’t renowned. Shipping isn’t my thing either. What’s the appeal?

Anonymous

having time for a life?

Anonymous

They are a good firm if you want really interesting Energy, Projects, Real Estate Transactions, Media, Environmental, International and Treaty Arbitration and Commercial disputes work. That is in addition to the really good Shipping department.

Anonymous

I.e. proper proper obscure practice areas.

Anonymous

Doesn’t even have a ranked pensions practice.

Ashurst Vac Schemer

Forget pensions, its finance is lender-side only and BAND 5! IMAGINE THE PLEBEIANS!

Anonymous

75,000 per annum is NOT top whack, buddeh!

Anonymous

It’s hardly a small amount you utter cretin. Get back to your LPC notes retard

Anonymous

I’ll get back to smashing PE deals for Glusker, anony-boi.

Kirkland Big Deek

Rather stick to BCLP, fool.

Anonymous

Nothing on Mayer Brown #TeamMbrownies

Anonymous

Nothing on Reed Smith #TeamRsmithies

Anonymous

What about trainee pay at SPB? First years on just £37k?!?

Anonymous

Proper sweaty

Kronos

Pah! This pales in comparison to the Top Tier Titan that is Greenberg Glusker.

We pay our trainees 200,000 Hungarian forint in their first year, rising to 250,000 in their second.

Pathetic.

Anonymous

DOES ANYONE HAVE THE NQ RATES AT HAYNES AND BOONE LLP THANK U

Anonymous

£125k at NQ according to a chinny

Kirkland Big Deek

PE and syndicated loans for me, thx.

Continental Big Law

Most continental “big law” associates (in London) are on less than trainee pay given their respective firms pay the same continental salary (simply converted in GBP).

Pretty sad given that they study longer (and harder) law degrees than their English-qualified peers and definitely do work very long hours…

BREXITKRIEG

…and we’re expected to care why?

Anonymous

Will you just fuck off bitching about this continental law crap on every thread. Literally nobody cares

Anonymous

Lol mate if the continentals do have harder degrees it’s because their jurisdictions have shite and convoluted legislation. It’s why the UK is by far the most lucrative legal market in europe.

Kirkland NQ

Hey guys I just wanted to come clean. I’m actually a paralegal working at my dad’s company. He’s too hesitant to give me any real responsibility so I mainly come on here pretending I’m some sort of well paid lawyer. When I finished my LLB at Birmingham I thought I was going to get the dream TC but sadly I was rejected outright.

I hope my funny comments brighten your day even though I am a fake

Anonymous

Your idea of what is funny (putting other people down and trying to make them feel inferior) is laughable.

Everyone knew you were not from Kirkland. You’re just one of the many bums on the comment section pretending to be something.

I am a 1 year PQE at Kirkland and I can tell you there are many reasons why someone would want to work elsewhere. A lot of things are opaque when you begin to consider pension schemes, benefits, progression, etc. This is true for many firms, but especially true for US firms.

If you’re in law for money, you could do better by going doing a 2+2 at a BB and fucking off to a fund or being smart enough to get straight into a quant fund.

Anonymous

Get a life lad

Anonymous

2+2 at a BB – what does that mean?

Kirkland NQ

Haha SHUT UP LOSER you only work at the ‘land of the free to wash my LAMBO hahah

Anonymous

Mediocrity really must be in your DNA.

Law student

Agree with above. Genuine question- To the 1 year PQE at Kirkland, how do you find the hours? Are they manageable?

Anonymous

Yes, I leave at 5pm every day

Anonymous

The hours are what you’d expect at a firm that primarily focuses on Corporate.

They’re manageable insofar as working for the sponsor rather than the banks means you have slightly more control (this is not always true). But they’re not very good. Being an associate naturally helps because I can manage and delegate downwards, but given how small the teams are, there is often a need to be very hands on.

If you’re asking whether I have my weekends, the answer is no, not really. It’s up and down, but more up than down, and the ups are more intense than the downs. Planning things is a nightmare sometimes.

I never really understood why people on LC are so feral about being in Kirkland or Latham. There is a cost and whether it is worth it is something you can only answer after you’ve been put through it.

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