TC applications at Clifford Chance jump 50% since 2018

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Magic Circle player publishes new eye-catching stats in a bid to help students “make the best choices for them”

Clifford Chance has published some eye-catching statistics about the number students applying for training contracts at the Magic Circle firm.

In a new YouTube video (embedded bottom) published this week the firm revealed that it had received a whopping 5,804 applications for its training contract and SPARK schemes during the last recruitment cycle.

Since 2018, the Magic Circle firm has seen the number of TC applications shoot up 52%, whilst applications for SPARK (basically the firm’s version of a vacation scheme) jumped 127% over the same period.

One in every twenty-eight TC applicants receives an offer, whilst just one in forty-one SPARK applicants were accepted onto the scheme. However, if you are lucky enough to get a spot on the latter, then you’re pretty likely to get a TC offer: 79% of SPARK participants were offered a TC following the 2021 scheme.

The 2023 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

Doing the Clifford Chance Global Virtual Internship also improves applicants’ chances of success. Those who have completed the virtual internship are 3.72 times more likely to be offered a TC than those who haven’t.

The new video also provides various diversity and social mobility statistics and aims “to help demystify the application process”, according to the firm.

Clifford Chance’s head of graduate talent Laura Yeates said that “by giving applicants this information”, the firm hopes aspiring lawyers will be “more empowered to make the best choices for them”.

The Legal Cheek Firms Most List 2023 shows the Clifford Chance is the largest TC provider in the country, with a recently improved annual trainee intake of around 110.

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Sad for the undergrads

This is nuts! In 2020 LC reported that there were 5626 training contracts available in the whole of England and Wales so CC has more aspiring solicitors applying to them than there are TC’s available in the whole country! Law students seem to feel that if they don’t get a magic circle TC that they’ve failed at their careers before they even get started.



CC leaving Canary Wharf and relocating to the City — LC fancy making this a small article? All firms now due to leave Canary Wharf #RIP



Good riddance


CC Former Trainee

Not until 2028, chill out.



Most importantly, is the pool coming too?



Damn that’s a lot of applications – I wonder how much of that though is churn of those who would have applied to their vac scheme now applying to either Spark/TC


MC ass

I’m at another MC. One of our recruiters told me that 60-70% of applications we get are basically shit. Basic things like poor academics or spelling and grammar, or obvious lack of understanding or genuine interest shining through in the application. Then a bunch of them do horribly at the relatively easy online assessment.

All this is to say to aspiring trainees – don’t be too daunted. If you have a good degree from a good Uni, write a good application, and come across well in interviews, you will almost certainly get a good TC somewhere. “1 in 28” sounds ridiculously competitive, but the reality is the large majority never had a hope.


US associate

Definitely agree with this – it’s easy to get intimidated applying for TCs, but you never know what you’re up against or how they’re doing, all you can control is your own performance.



Probably the best firm in the country in terms of the all-round package (salary, training, work quality).



Best firm…sure assuming everyone wants to be a finance lawyer


Former CC

More Tier 1 rankings than any other law firm – it’s not just for finance to be fair!



CC’s marketing team joined the chat



It’s a fact though that CC does have more tier 1 rankings than any other firm though, both in the U.K. and globally. And most of those rankings are not for finance.

I am the lord of the bus said he

This is paid advertising


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