Bates Wells — solicitor apprenticeship

The Legal Cheek View

This is the Bates Wells profile for those considering solicitor apprenticeships. Students looking to apply for training contracts should check out Legal Cheek‘s main Bates Wells profile.

Known for its particular strengths in the charity and social enterprise sectors, Bates Wells is one of only a handful of law firms to boast ‘B Corp’ status, solidifying its reputation for championing positive social and environmental impact. Outside of its strong charity practice, the firm also covers areas including corporate law, employment, real estate, immigration, litigation, and public & regulatory law.

Following on from a pattern of “value-driven” business decisions, Bates Wells is hiring its first cohort of solicitor apprentices in September 2024. The firm’s first two recruits will be based at its HQ on Queen’s Street Place in central London.

Drilling into the early details of Bates Wells’ offering, apprentices will rotate at least 11 times around the firms various legal practice areas and non-legal business teams. Starting their six-year journey in the engine room of the firm, the programme begins with two six-monthly seats on the non-legal business side where apprentices will gain hands-on experience in the finance, risk & compliance, business development & marketing, and practice management. After gaining an holistic view of how the law firm operates on the ground, apprentices go on to spend the next three years in a paralegal-level role within the firm’s practice groups, applying what they are learning on real matters and cases, and rotating at least annually.

Continue reading

The final two years of their six-year stint will see seasoned apprentices join the firm’s graduate trainee cohort. The training contract involves a total of five seat rotations – two six-monthly seats in the first year, and three four-monthly seats in the second year. And this of course includes a compulsory seat in the firm’s busy charity and social enterprise team.

In terms of legal studies, apprentices will also complete a law degree on part-time basis over the first four years, spending four days working full-time in the office and one day studying with The University of Law. They will go on to complete the Solicitor Qualifying Exams (SQE), emerging as fully qualified solicitors by the end of the programme.

But, what is hard work without a little play? A netball club, a football club and Thursday drinks after work are just a few socials that hopefuls can look forward to at this altruistic outfit. Boasting various diversity networks, rookies can also get their hands dirty planning events and initiatives at the firm throughout the year to get those social juices flowing. Uni FOMO who? And for those who feel like the charitable work at the firm just isn’t enough, recruits can expect the classic two-days a year on top of their annual leave for volunteering outside of the office.

Please note Bates Wells’ Legal Cheek View will be updated once the firm recruits its first solicitor apprentices.

This is Bates Wells’ Solicitor Apprenticeship profile. Read Bates Wells’ full Legal Cheek profile here.


First year salary £27,352
Second year salary £30,000
Third year salary £35,000
Fourth year salary £35,000
Fifth year salary £41,000
Sixth year salary £43,000

General Info

Solicitor apprenticeships each year 2
Locations where apprenticeships offered 1
Minimum GCSE requirement Five 4s
Minimum A-level requirement BBC

GCSE requirements include English and Maths.

Apprenticeships are offered in London.