CMS boosts trainee pay for second time this year and ups law school maintenance grants

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By Thomas Connelly on


City rookies now start on £50k

CMS has increased salaries for trainees in London and the regions while also upping financial support for training contract holders.

The international law firm has increased year one rates in London to £50,000, an uplift of 7% from £46,725, while year two rookies will receive £55,000 — a bump of 5% from £52,250.

Trainee pay in Bristol now sits at £43,000 in year one, rising to £45,000 in year two, while their counterparts in Manchester and Sheffield receive £31,500 and £34,500. Rookie pay in Scotland has moved to £28,000 and £31,000.

The firm last increased trainee pay in March of this year.

The Legal Cheek Firms Most List 2022 shows newly qualified (NQ) associates earn a base rate of £100,000 in London (following a rise earlier this summer) and £65,000 in Bristol. NQ pay in the regions and Scotland is currently set at £57,500.

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And it’s not just the firm’s trainees who are receiving a little extra — future rookies are too.

CMS confirmed maintenance grants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Law (PGDL), Legal Practice Course (LPC) and Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE) have increased from £7,500 to £10,000 in London, and from £5,000 to £7,500 for those studying elsewhere.

CMS recruits around 95 trainees each year, following a hike last summer which made it the second highest training contract provider in the UK. Linklaters sits in top spot with 100 TCs annually.

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