This section has profiles of over 40 solicitors at different firms, designed to give you a sense of how they got there, what their working day looks like and the advice they have to offer. Read how they made the transition from student to qualified lawyer.


Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard

  • Aster Crawshaw

History graduate Aster Crashaw has long since learned that the outcome for the client is always more important than pride or precedent. Read on for his lawyerly wisdom.

Ashfords

Ashfords

  • Giles Lane

The technological age we live in makes the role of an IP solicitor one of the most fascinating legal careers out there, according to Giles Lane. Read on for his insights into IP practice, as well as work experience and the attraction of South West firm Ashfords.

Ashurst LLP

Ashurst LLP

  • Helen Raynsford

Helen Raynsford works on fascinating corporate projects at Ashurst, a firm that wants to support and develop its lawyers both professionally and personally. Read on to find out about her journey to qualification and beyond.

Baker & McKenzie

Baker & McKenzie

  • Jason Raeburn

As an intellectual property solicitor at Baker & McKenzie, Jason Raeburn’s work regularly centres on cutting-edge technologies and business models. Read on for more on the opportunities and experiences that come with working at such a forward-looking firm.

Bird & Bird

Bird & Bird

  • Alex Gest

Alex Gest was attracted to Bird & Bird by the collaborative atmosphere, small trainee intake and great clients. Now an associate, he describes his fulfilling career at this renowned international firm.

Bristows LLP

Bristows LLP

  • Katie Rooth

The route from a sciences degree to a career as an IP solicitor is well established, although Katie Rooth is quick to point out that a sciences background is not a prerequisite for working on all things patented and trademarked. Read on to find out more about Bristows, its training contract and its IP litigation practice.

Browne Jacobson LLP

Browne Jacobson LLP

  • Angelica Hymers

Newly qualified solicitor Angelica Hymers enjoys a wide range of work as a member of Browne Jacobson’s government and infrastructure team. Read on to learn more about life at the firm, as well as for Angelica’s sound advice on gaining legal work experience.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

  • Beth Fryer

Beth Fryer enjoys an unusual mix of both contentious and non-contentious work in her role as a construction lawyer at Charles Russell Speechlys. Learn more about her path from student to trainee to associate at this dynamic firm.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP

  • Andrew-Dane Fairclough

If it’s exciting international work you’re after, Andrew’s career at Clyde & Co is the stuff of dreams – Iraqi pipeline overrun by Isis, travel to Rio and Sydney, and more. Learn about his career path and his advice on how to succeed.

CMS

CMS

  • Munal Mehta

Munal Mehta is a corporate lawyer at international firm CMS. Learn more about working in private equity, and the sorts of skills you need to excel in this exciting environment.

Dechert LLP

Dechert LLP

  • Joshua Smith

French-speaking Joshua Smith details the highlights of his Dechert experience and offers advice on how to succeed in your own training contract quest. Bonne chance!

Dentons

Dentons

  • Rachael Dixon

Corporate solicitor Rachael Dixon has a lot of hard-earned knowledge to share – from providing you with detailed insight into what practising commercial law at Dentons is really like, to the best ways of securing work experience. Step this way for her invaluable advice.

DLA Piper UK LLP

DLA Piper UK LLP

  • Jack Randles

After an exciting training contract which involved a secondment to Hong Kong, Jack Randles qualified into DLA Piper's IP department. Read on for more about trademarks, copyright, patents and everything else that a career in IP entails.

DWF LLP

DWF LLP

  • Megan Carr

DWF trainee Megan Carr was attracted to the firm by the wide range of experience offered by the unique six-seat system, and she hasn’t been disappointed. Read on to learn more about her journey.

Farrer & Co LLP

Farrer & Co LLP

  • Katie Rigg

Katie Rigg had a fascinating path to her role as an employment associate at Farrer & Co, via exotic locations including The Hague, Argentina and Budapest. Read on to find out more about her incredibly varied and rewarding work at this pre-eminent firm.

Foot Anstey LLP

Foot Anstey LLP

  • Charlotte Brett

High-quality work, a friendly, team-focused environment and a commitment to having a work/life balance were all key attractions that drew Charlotte Brett to Foot Anstey. Read on to learn more about the great commercial practice at this South West firm.

Freeths LLP

Freeths LLP

  • Serra Lee

Serra Lee began her journey at Freeths as a legal assistant, and is soon to qualify into the fun-sounding drinks, hospitality and leisure department. Read more about her path to fully qualified lawyer at this go-getting firm.

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP

  • David Dowling

Gibson Dunn gives its juniors much more responsibility than some of the more traditional City firms - junior associates are even given their own business development budgets. Corporate solicitor David Dowling discusses the opportunities that this affords, as well as the firm's private M&A work and how the balance of power in the City is shifting.

Gowling WLG (UK) LLP

Gowling WLG (UK) LLP

  • Laura Dick

Corporate associate Laura Dick thrives on the high-profile deals that Gowling WLG is instructed on, as well as the praise that her authentic Chinese cooking elicits. Read on to learn more about being a lawyer at this dynamic firm.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

  • John Matthew

Commercial litigator John Matthew finds motivation in the intellectual challenge of finding creative legal solutions to his clients’ problems. Read on to learn more about the headline-grabbing deals and close-knit culture that make life at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP so enjoyable.

Hill Dickinson LLP

Hill Dickinson LLP

  • James Down

Corporate solicitor James Down enjoys the high level of client contact that comes with private company M&A and capital markets work. Read on to learn more about life at full-service international firm Hill Dickinson.

Hogan Lovells

Hogan Lovells

  • Charlotte Cartwright

Charlotte Cartwright hung up her dancing shoes for a career in law – a decision which proved to be the right one, despite having to learn a different set of moves. Read on to learn more about her life at Hogan Lovells, with its varied practice areas and tight-knit culture.

Irwin Mitchell

Irwin Mitchell

  • Emma McPeake

Real estate lawyer Emma McPeake hopes to visit Antarctica one day; in the meantime, excitement can be found in her dream firm, Irwin Mitchell. Read on to learn more about her career and the advice she has to offer.

Jones Day

Jones Day

  • Alex Hatvany

Training at Jones Day is unique - trainees are not assigned to a series of seats, but are instead encouraged to seek work wherever they see fit, making the process of gravitating to a final area of specialisation more independent and flexible. Read on to learn more about how training at Jones Day works from current trainee, Alex Hatvany.

K&L Gates LLP

K&L Gates LLP

  • James Boyd

Solicitor James Boyd discusses fast-paced, multijurisdictional litigation and how global presence and collegiality combine at top firm K&L Gates.

King & Wood Mallesons

King & Wood Mallesons

  • Josie Greener

Josie Greener’s relationship with KWM began as a campus ambassador; she now finds herself as an associate in the commercial litigation department. Read more about her journey and advice she has for those who would follow in her footsteps.

Kingsley Napley LLP

Kingsley Napley LLP

  • Connie Atkinson

Connie Atkinson always knew that she wanted to be a family lawyer, and so it came to pass, at Kingsley Napley. Read on to learn more about her fascinating work and life at the firm.

Kirkland & Ellis International LLP

Kirkland & Ellis International LLP

  • Kai Zeng

Kai Zeng of Kirkland & Ellis is an advocate for balancing the demands of exciting work in the restructuring team with life beyond the office, something that is actively encouraged by the firm. Read on for his advice on getting ahead and creating a successful career.

Macfarlanes LLP

Macfarlanes LLP

  • Charlotte Youngs

Charlotte Youngs’ path to becoming a solicitor included self-funding the LPC and a spell as a paralegal – two milestones which many aspiring lawyers have in common. Now a solicitor at Macfarlanes, she enjoys both the technical challenge and client interaction aspects of real estate work – read on to find out more.

Mayer Brown International LLP

Mayer Brown International LLP

  • Charlie Clendon

Firms look not only for people who are academic, but who also have some personality and will be able to gel well with their teams, even in high-pressure situations.

Mills & Reeve LLP

Mills & Reeve LLP

  • Alex Pickett

Life in the banking and finance team at Mills & Reeve is always varied and exciting. Read on for Alex Pickett’s insights into practice and applying for a training contract.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Europe) LLP

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Europe) LLP

  • Will George

Organised with military precision, Will’s route to law was orderly and clearly defined. Learn more about his role as a combatant - sorry, litigation associate - at Orrick.

Osborne Clarke LLP

Osborne Clarke LLP

  • Daniel Hutton

Daniel is clued up about the fact that an on-site gym and restaurant do not a good work/life balance make - rather, he values Osborne Clarke LLP's true appreciation of its importance, among many other great things.

Ropes & Gray International LLP

Ropes & Gray International LLP

  • Alex Pusey

Newly-qualified associate Alex Pusey is proud to be part of a firm that is ambitious and "open to new ideas"; find out more about his path to qualification and the exciting work that happens at Ropes & Gray.

Shearman & Sterling (London) LLP

Shearman & Sterling (London) LLP

  • Vikki Fabian

Vikki Fabian enjoys the combination of a small London office with exciting international work that life as an M&A lawyer at Shearman & Sterling offers. Learn more about her route to law and advice on how to succeed.

Shoosmiths

Shoosmiths

  • Natalie Brody

Natalie Brody thought carefully about where she wanted to train, and Shoosmiths ticked all the right boxes, especially in terms of its supportive culture and ambition. Read on to find out more about her path to qualification at 2015’s ‘UK Law Firm of the Year’.

Sidley Austin LLP

Sidley Austin LLP

  • Jenny Watts

Jenny Watts has flourished since joining Sidley Austin thanks to the emphasis the firm places on giving trainees real responsibility and plenty of opportunity to develop as lawyers. Read on to learn more about the high-quality commercial work and team-focused environment at Sidley Austin.

Simmons & Simmons LLP

Simmons & Simmons LLP

  • Erin Rose

Erin Rose is a strong advocate of work experience, especially as a means of distinguishing yourself from the many excellent candidates vying for training contracts. Read on for more advice and insight into life as a Simmons’ trainee.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP

  • Joseph Hone

Joseph’s first experience at Skadden was defined by the candid approach the firm took – “There was an honesty about the people and the process at Skadden which was lacking in some of the other firms I had spent time in” – and he’s now happy to be training in that very same environment.

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May

  • Stephanie Kluk

Slaughter and May has always done things differently – from the multi-specialist approach of all its lawyers to the firm’s eschewal of arbitrary billing targets. Read on to learn more about this and life at the firm from associate Stephanie Kluk.

Stephenson Harwood LLP

Stephenson Harwood LLP

  • Alex Thornton

SH associate Alex Thornton describes what he enjoys about life at a firm that offers great quality of work, the chance to interact with interesting people and an appreciation of individuality.

Stevens & Bolton LLP

Stevens & Bolton LLP

  • Angelica Liddell

Currently enjoying the breadth of experience that a six-seat system provides, Angelica Liddell describes why being a trainee at Stevens & Bolton is all she hoped for and more.

TLT LLP

TLT LLP

  • Ben Jackson

Ben Jackson was attracted to TLT by its reputation and those of its lawyers whom he had met. Now one himself, he describes what else makes the firm a great place to train and the work he has been exposed to so far.

Travers Smith LLP

Travers Smith LLP

  • Katie McGarry

Katie McGarry of Travers Smith gets the requisite buzz from corporate deals – a good sign that she’s in the right line of work. Learn more from her about the benefits of working with people you like in a supportive and non-hierarchical firm.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP

Trowers & Hamlins LLP

  • Jess Arczynski

Associate Jess Arczynski is excited about the fast-paced and stimulating housing and regeneration work that she does at Trowers, a global firm that taps into her own international background.

Walker Morris LLP

Walker Morris LLP - Law firm in Yorkshire

  • Laura Demaine

Commercial solicitor Laura Demaine loves the satisfaction of seeing a deal go through, as well as the under-one-roof culture of Leeds-based national firm Walker Morris. Read on to learn more about the firm’s transactional work, as well as its innovative six-seat training contract model.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP

  • Muhna Rehman

Muhna loves the fact that Weightmans offers the chance to learn from leaders in their fields, who are also approachable and never make you feel “silly asking a question”. Read on for more on what it means to train at this top 50 firm.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges

Weil, Gotshal & Manges

  • Ellie Fialho

Deserted island holidays may beckon, but Ellie Fialho gets as much of a kick out of her challenging work at international giant Weil, Gotshal & Manges. Read about her journey from music student to corporate lawyer here.