CMS becomes second highest training contract provider with 95 places

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Up 20% from 79

CMS has become the second highest training contract provider in the UK, offering a total of 95 trainee places for the coming recruitment year.

This marks a 20% increase on the 79 TC spots previously dished out by the firm each year, sending signs of a buoyant trainee recruitment market.

“We are delighted to be increasing the number of training contracts available across our UK offices,” Michael Cavers, early talent partner at CMS, told Legal Cheek. “The firm is in a strong position which has allowed us to expand our trainee programme and invest in a strong pipeline of talented trainees. This will support the continued growth of the firm and our ambition to be the leading future facing law firm.”

CMS’ training programme is offered in London, Manchester, Bristol and Sheffield, among other locations.

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Our Firms Most List shows CMS now ranks second for most UK TCs on offer, beaten only by Linklaters, which has around 100 training contracts up for grabs each year, the most of any law firm. Clifford Chance offers 90 training spots each year, plus five on its lawtech training contract. Allen & Overy, meanwhile, offers 85 TCs, and Freshfields and Slaughter and May both offer 80 training places.

The increase in training contracts at CMS appears to mark the end of a period of transition for the firm following its merger with Olswang and Nabarro which saw it cough up £250,000 in 2017 after 25 future trainees accepted training contract deferral deals.

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Great place to train. Leaks associates but perhaps not an issue with so many trainees each year!



Would agree. Had a great TC and there’s secondments on offer which really help you stand out. I left at NQ level along with some others, as many people leave CMS at NQ – 1 PQE as you can either get better pay for similar hours or a better work life balance for similar pay at other firms.



Same as me. This comment is completely on point.


grumpy 2nd year exeter student

oh of course my negative comment gets deleted but this wannabe peppy loser comment gets approved



Their training is solid and smart prospects realise this. Big money moves for those interested are at NQ level – not at TC stage. So, if you’re selecting firms for TC based on NQ salaries alone, you’ll be missing out on firms with fantastic legal training programs, like CMS. Training at CMS will prep you for life at silver/magic circle and US firms, if that’s what you’re interested in. Don’t put much thought into what some people on here say about CMS.



Lmao sure fresher 😂🤡



Negotiated against them a while ago as part of a RE transaction. One of their team was one of the rudest lawyers I’ve ever come across in private practice. I know I shouldn’t judge a whole firm by that experience, but I find it hard not to – someone like that simply wouldn’t be allowed to behave like that in my firm.



Please elaborate on this as “rude” is oftentimes very subjective.

As an example, most US “top” lawyers would feel rude to a European/UK counterpart while, in fact, they are just employing their usual more zealous style of dealing.

For my own curiosity, it would be interesting to know what happened! Of course, superficial details only without revealing anything you should not 🙂



I’ve worked in two US-headquartered firms so I know what ‘rude’ is. On this transaction, the person in question was continuously making snide or sarcastic comments, engaging in lots of eye-rolling, being seemingly deliberately uncooperative, etc. It was pantomime-level behaviour.

No doubt many people will say that’s just par for the course in tough negotiations. It’s actually not – at the end of the day, we’re all just trying to reach a common position and none of what we were asking for on behalf of our client was unreasonable or off-market.


Ex CMS trainee and associate

CMS is an excellent place to train

The real estate department at CMS, and a number of property related teams, are utter dicks

Both statements are true from my personal experience



Original: “CMS becomes second highest training contract provider with 95 places”.

Mark-up: “CMS remains a battery farm”.



Presumably because they can’t keep associates or hire them.


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