Ashurst keeps 20 out of 24 NQ solicitors as it bumps trainee pay by 5%

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£46,000 in year one, rising to £50,000 in year two

The London office of Ashurst has confirmed its latest retention score, revealing that 20 out of its 24 newly qualifying (NQ) solicitors will be staying with the firm this autumn. This hands Ashurst, which made 21 offers, a result of 83%.

“Attracting, supporting and developing the best people from the widest talent pool is a key priority,” said Ashurst employment partner and training principal Ruth Buchanan. “We are delighted to welcome our newly qualified trainees to the team and look forward to seeing them progress in their careers.”

The 27-office-outfit, which offers 45 training spots each year, posted a result of 90% (19 out of 21) this time last year.

The 2020 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

The 2020 Legal Cheek Firms Most List shows that those sticking around at Ashurst will start on a recently improved base salary of £84,000 — a 2% bump on the previous base rate of £82,000. The firm, however, said NQs could earn as much as £105,000 with bonus applied.

Ashurst also confirmed trainee pay has risen from £44,000 to £46,000 in year one and £48,000 to £50,000 in year two — uplifts of 5% and 4%, respectively.

Earlier this summer, Ashurst revealed a 14% rise in turnover from £564 million to £641 million, while profit per equity partner (PEP) jumped to £972,000 — an uplift of 31% on last year’s figure of £743,000.

In our Trainee and Junior Lawyer Survey 2019–20 the firm scored A*s for its new office and canteen, as well as As for training, quality of work, peer support, partner approachability, tech and social life.

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Viva la Resistance

Presumably the 3 pieces of deadwood, left to drift, couldn’t tell their hand from a hole puncher.



Or they received nq offers elsewhere


Viva la Resitance

If the firm you’ve been with for two years does not give you an offer, it is rather indicative of one’s ability. This is different from being offered a position in tax, when really all you want to do is pensions so decline.



Not really true. Very easy to fall through the cracks because there’s a lack of business need in the department you want to qualify into.


R U P E R T ; A U S F I R M A S S





Sweatshop, avoid



I feel like on LC everyone says that every firm is a sweatshop…which ones generally aren’t and are genuinely nice to work at?



According to LC readers no such firm exists.


Fuck off Alex.



Great firm with good clients and high pedigree of associate. Swanky new offices too with some free drinks each week at the rooftop bar – good for a sesh.


In House

Genuine question – Is there really any genuine desire to hang around the office for free drinks?

Would time not be better spent with actual friends, and family?

May just be me, but I try to keep as wide a berth as I can between business and pleasure.


Penis Pump

SC associates are always second rate

The ones that are serious about law stay in the MC or move up to elite US for the bucks

SC partners are a slightly different matter



This is so true.



Literally this. Virtually any firm I’ve ever seen mentioned here is, according to LC commentators, a “sweatshop” or has “psycho partners / senior associates”, and if it pays any less than 130k a year, its also a “shet” firms with “shet” pay. The few firms that do pay more than this are regarded as crapshoots where unless youre billing 2500 hours / year you get kicked out.

It makes me wonder if the majority of those commenting have any idea about the legal industry at all? It seems more likely half of them are 2nd years at Lancaster reading history, with the majority of their legal knowledge coming from the rumours spread by their LLB cohort. That, or theyre the ones who did get kicked out for drunkenly groping a trainee at the office christmas party and are now spewing “avoid! avoid! avoid!” any chance they get.

Grow up you buffoons.


Lashurst NQ

Nah. Just stay away from shet sweaty firms m8. Not difficult.


To be fair, most of City firms are sweatshops, this is a fact.


Viva las Resistance

The average actual sweatshop runs 14 hour days, which is synonymous of some of these Firms. It portrays a rather realistic worldview to treat them as such.

I otherwise disagree with referring to pay but working out how many hours I work as the hourly “wage” I am paid. However, it would be a sensible statement to class something as shet pay when the average 9-5 worker earns X and when I work more hours while earning Y the sum per hour is rather close to X’s hourly rate.

That and we are all petulant children, so are indeed not ready to grow up yet.



No such thing as a sweatshop that pays 4x + the national average, most City lawyers at most of these firms live like kings compared to the average Brit. This competition exists within a very small and elite circle of the top lawyers fight tooth and nail for the most prestigious clients, but at the end of the day whichever spot in the top, I dont know, 30-50 firms you land, youll probably be quite nicely set for your early adult life and beyond.

It’s kind of like a Harvard grad saying that NYU or Penn are shet schools. Thats absolutely ridiculous to anyone besides the Harvard grad, even though Harvard’s name will probably get you farther than any other name in the world (at least in law). These are all extremely elite law schools whose alumni will go on to secure, quite likely, very successful careers, and the same can be said for any lawyer over this side of the pond who secures a spot at virtually any top firm, be it US, MC, SC, or even some more regions-focused firms like IM, or global patchworks like Dentons or Bakers.


Angus, Exeter University LL.B.

Do people actually think working in Dentons or IM puts you in “a very small and elite circle of…top lawyers”?


Idiot police

The commenter never said that they are clearly stating whether at a MC or at IM you have the potential to lead a successful legal career and either way be earning over the national average.

Once you leave uni and actually join a firm you will too realise this



Ashurst is a top firm. Has all the same clients as the magic circle and pays almost the same. Slightly friendlier culture, though in corporate law you roll with punches wherever you go.

Stop spreading nonsense, it’s annoying.


Only someone at a second rate shop would say that.


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