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Trainee pay at Clifford Chance hits £55k

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£50k in year one, rising to £55k in year two

Clifford Chance has increased the salaries of its trainee solicitors, Legal Cheek can reveal.

The firm’s year one rookies will now earn a salary of £50,000, a rise of £2,000 from £48,000, while their colleagues in year two will receive £55,000, a boost of £1,000 from £54,000. This equates to uplifts of 4% and 1% respectively.

The pay rise puts the firm’s second year trainees on the same levels of cash as those finding their feet at a host of US heavyweights including Akin Gump, Cleary Gottlieb and Debevoise & Plimpton. As for its magic circle rivals, Linklaters is the only other member of the elite fivesome to provide the same £55k sum.

The Legal Cheek Firms Most List shows that CC is one of the largest trainee recruiters in the City, dishing out up to 95 training contracts each year.

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News of the cash injection comes just months after Legal Cheek revealed the firm had increased the salaries of its newly qualified (NQ) solicitors to £100k.

Elsewhere, Womble Bond Dickinson has confirmed a series of pay rises of its own. NQs in London will now earn £68,000, up £3,000 from £65,000, while pay in Newcastle and Plymouth has risen a sizeable 14% to £44,000. NQ pay in Bristol now sits at £50,000, up from a previous rate of £46,000, and £45,000 in both Southampton and Leeds — boosts of £3,000 from £42,000.

Trainees are also cashing in. First year trainees in London will receive £38,000 in year one, rising to £40,000 in year two, while their counterparts in Bristol and Southampton are now on £30,000, rising to £32,000 in year two. Trainees in Newcastle and Leeds start on £26,000 and £27,000, moving to £28,000 and £29,000 in their second year. Rookies in Plymouth earn £28,000 and £30,000.

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