Ashurst posts 84% spring retention score

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16 out of 19

Ashurst is the latest City firm to report its spring retention rate, scoring 84%.

From an intake of 19 trainees, the global firm went on to make 16 offers which were all accepted.

All positions offered were permanent and located in the London office, with five newly qualified (NQ) solicitors joining the corporate team, four moving into projects and two qualifying into global loans. The final five join competition, disputes, funds, global markets and real estate, respectively.

“Congratulations to our latest cohort of qualifying lawyers — we are delighted to welcome such a talented group to the team,” commented Ruth Buchanan, employment partner and training principal at Ashurst.

The 2023 Legal Cheek Firms Most List

“As a firm, we are committed to the growth and development of our people, and look forward to supporting them as they continue on their journey to become the leaders and trusted advisers of tomorrow,” Buchanan added.

The soon-to-be newly-qualified (NQ) solicitors will start on a salary of £105,000, up from a year two trainee rate of £55,000. The Legal Cheek Firms Most List 2023 shows the firm offers around 45 training contracts each year.

The score is not far off last spring when the firm recorded an overall retention rate of 85% (17 out of 20).

Currently, only four other firms have published their spring rates: Freshfields (97%), White & Case (78%), Linklaters (94%) and Clifford Chance (69%).

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Ashurst Trainee

If I’m not mistaken, believe all three leavers weren’t offered the seats they wanted, and went to other firms as a result.

Trainees here seem relatively happy to qualify here and enjoy it for a couple years. It’s at 1-2PQE that the attrition seems to begin and some go to US firms and others head off to more quiet pastures.


Anons Limited

Pretty sure retention at Assburst is pretty inconsistent.



Thx for the insight fresher, top level analysis.

QuikNotes on Torts are calling you I’m afraid, back to your highlighters you go.


Ashurst NQ

Really decent firm. Decent whack for the quality of work + doable hours and collaborative culture. Although I expect rates to be nearer 120k base by the end of the year, which would then be a truly fantastic offering


Hat Enjoyer

If Ashurst pay more than A&O by the end of the year, I’ll eat my hat


Bananafield forever

Ashurst NQs are of significantly better quality than A&O NQs IMHO. SC is underrated.


US corp

US firms get a lot of stick for focusing on transactional teams. Often said that a major downside to training US is that you’ll struggle to qualify into a disputes or advisory practice. Honestly these qualifying statistics/proportions are pretty comparable to my US firm. In fact, ours might’ve had a higher proportion in advisory/litigation last qualification round from what I remember.


Pain in the Ashursts

15% better than the east London firm.


Question incoming Ashurst trainee

What’s the best practice areas to go into and which are the easiest to pick up (least stressful) practice areas to pick up?


You’ll thank me later

Global Loans, definitely.


Ashurst Trainee

Probably not the best mindset to be joining with the intention to avoid anything that’s relatively challenging to understand or anything with any stress.

Departments are typically either academically challenging (complex legislation, research heavy), or physically challenging (demand long hours, endurance). There’s no free lunch department offering neither.



Ah damn, I’ll go with physically demanding thanks. So what practice areas are physically demanding then



Transactional seats. What you’d expect


Reality cheque

Catering and print room.

To be honest I don’t think a legal career suits you.



Says the person who spells “check” as “cheque”


Okay. Elaborate. Pretty sure there’s long hours in transactional or non-transactional seats..


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