FAQs

If you cannot find the answer to your query, please get in touch via our Facebook page facebook Icon and we will do our best to help you further.

Please note that we are unfortunately unable to accept speculative applications. Should you wish to submit an application for a vacancy, please apply through the careers pages of our website.

Vacation Schemes and Work Experience

  • Do you have internships or work experience opportunities?
    The only internships or work experience available in the London and Bristol offices are through our formal vacation schemes and open days. We offer various schemes aimed at first year university students through to graduates and career changers who have studied either law or non-law degrees. If you are interested in applying for one of our schemes, our online application process is open from October to January. All applications must be made through the online application form which can be found here, along with further information on each scheme, which can be found here.

    Whilst we are unable to offer any work experience outside of the vacation schemes we do run open days throughout the year. These are aimed at all undergraduates, graduates and career changers and should also be applied for through our website.

    Unfortunately, we do not accept speculative applications for informal work experience.

    What are your application deadlines?
    Winter vacation scheme: 01 November 2016
    Summer vacation schemes: 15 January 2017
    Spring insight scheme: 01 February 2017

    A full list of our application deadlines can be found here . As we fill our roles on a first come first served basis, we strongly recommend you apply early to avoid disappointment.

    How many vacation scheme places do you have each year?
    Winter vacation scheme: 1 scheme with approximately 20 places.
    Spring insight scheme: 1 scheme with approximately 20 places.
    Summer vacation schemes: 2 schemes in London with approximately 20 places on each and 1 scheme in Bristol with approximately 5 places.

    I am doing a four year law course with a year abroad, when should I apply for a summer vacation scheme?
    Our summer vacation schemes are usually aimed at candidates who are looking to gain a training contract in two years time. However, we do accept applications from law students in their second year, who will be spending a year abroad, in their penultimate year. Alternatively, if you would rather apply for our scheme in your third year you are more than welcome to do so. 

    Do you have any internships (or vacation schemes) available at your international offices?
    We do have a limited number of internships available at some of our international offices. Details of opportunities can be found on the country specific pages here. Please click on the relevant office to find out how to apply.

    I am a first year law or non-law student at university, are there any schemes that I can apply for?
    Yes, we run a spring insight scheme which is aimed at first year law students and non-law students. Please click here for further information and application form.

Events and Open Days

  • I am interested in attending an event to find out more about Simmons & Simmons, how can I find out about events?

    All the events that we are running at universities and at our offices can be found here.

    We also run a number of open days throughout the year which are open to all undergraduates, graduates and career changers interested in finding out more about the firm. We require applicants to apply online. Further information can be found here.

    Do you reimburse travel expenses for open days?

    Yes, we will reimburse travel to our open days on public transport up to £100 on production of valid receipts.

Applying for a Training Contract

  • How do I apply for a training contract?
    We recruit our trainee solicitors two years in advance. Applying for a training contract at Simmons & Simmons should be done using the online application form here. Further details of our application process can be found here.

    What do you look for in an application?
    We are looking for trainees who have a real interest in business, can relate well to clients and are committed to a career in the City or Bristol. We expect our trainees to have a strong educational track record and you will be expected to achieve at least a 2.1 in your degree. We accept applications from candidates with both law and non-law undergraduate degrees. Further information can be found here.

    The application process for training contracts is only open for September 2019/March 2020, however I would like to start earlier or later than this, can I still apply?
    Unfortunately we are only able to accept training contract applications for the year we are currently recruiting for. If, however, you would like to start your training contract earlier you are welcome to apply. If you are successful in obtaining a training contract, we would be happy to review your start date again at this stage. We stress, however, that there is no guarantee we will be able to move start dates forward.

    We do not unfortunately allow applicants to apply for later start dates.

    What is your application deadline?
    Our application deadline for training contracts is15 January 2017. However, as we fill our roles on a first come first served basis, we strongly recommend you apply early to avoid disappointment.

    I have previously been unsuccessful in the recruitment process at Simmons & Simmons, when can I reapply?
    Unfortunately, we are unable to consider candidates who have applied previously in the same recruitment year and been unsuccessful (at either application or interview). Please wait until the next recruitment year (which commences each Autumn) before submitting another application.

    Do Simmons & Simmons wait until receiving all applications before reviewing them?
    No. We recruit for our vacation schemes and training contracts on a rolling basis and therefore strongly recommend you apply early to avoid disappointment. Please note, that if you apply close to the deadline, it will take us slightly longer to respond to your application and there is a chance we will have filled all of our roles.

    Do you conduct Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks?
    All future trainees of Simmons & Simmons will be required to go through the firm's pre-employment screening process. This will include a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. The firm undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a DBS check on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed. The firm's policy on the recruitment of ex-offenders is available on request.

Your Application

  • Do you accept mitigating circumstances for academic results?
    Yes, we do consider mitigating circumstances. If you have mitigating circumstances you should outline these in the education section of the application form under ‘Further Information’.

    What academic results do Simmons & Simmons ask for?
    We look for candidates that have mainly A’s at GCSE, 340 UCAS points (AAB) at A-Level and a 2:1 degree (or equivalent). We do not screen out applications based purely on academics and do take all aspects of an application into consideration. However, the competition for training contracts and vacation placements at the firm is intense and we only have a limited number of places available.

    Am I at a disadvantage if I do not have any legal work experience?
    No, we recognise that not everyone will have had the opportunity to obtain legal work experience and therefore do not specifically request this. Any work experience can be helpful, as it gives you the ability to demonstrate some of our desired competencies and transferable skills and whether you have completed legal work experience or not, we still want you to show us why you are interested in a career in law.

    Do you give feedback to candidates who have been unsuccessful?
    Unfortunately, due to the high volume of applications we receive, we are unable to provide feedback to candidates who have been rejected at application stage for vacation schemes or training contracts. We do, however, provide verbal feedback to candidates who have been unsuccessful at an assessment day if requested.

    I studied outside of the UK and am having difficulties fitting my results into the education section of the form, what should I do?
    Please try to fit your results into the application form as best as you can. All major exam results from the age of 16 should be included and we request that a full module breakdown is provided. Please enter your results as they appear on your transcript and do not try to ‘convert’ them to the UK education system. If you would like to provide a fuller explanation of your education system or have difficulty imputing results, please include this explanation in the 'Additional information' space provided on the application form.

Diversity and Inclusion

  • Is it possible to have the application form in a different format as I have a disability?
    We are more than happy to provide the application form in an alternative format. Please e-mail recruitment@simmons-simmons.com or call 020 7628 2020 and let us know what format you require. 

    I have a disability or a health condition which means I require reasonable adjustments during the recruitment process. Will Simmons & Simmons be able to provide these?
    If you need any reasonable adjustments to be made at any stage of our process for open days, vacation schemes or training contracts, please get in touch to let us know. We’ll gladly do all we can to help you perform to the best of your ability. Please contact a member of the graduate recruitment team by e-mail (recruitment@simmons-simmons.com), or phone (020 7628 2020). If you are not sure what adjustments you may require for the recruitment process, we can establish this together.

    I have a disability but am concerned about disclosing this to Simmons & Simmons, what should I do?
    You should not worry about informing Simmons & Simmons of any disability. We are committed to diversity and inclusion and welcome applications from candidates from a wide range of backgrounds. If you require adjustments during the recruitment process, we would encourage you to disclose this information to us as soon as you can so that we are able to make the adjustments required.

Law School

  • Do you have a preference as to where applicants have studied their GDL or LPC?
    If you receive and accept a training contract offer before you have registered for the GDL and/or LPC, you will be required to undertake both at BPP Law School in London. Applicants who are taking, or have taken, their GDL/LPC elsewhere are not at a disadvantage when applying for a training contract.

     

Your Training Contract

  • How many trainees do you take on each year?
    We recruit 35 trainees each year in London and 3 trainees in Bristol. The trainee intake in London is split between September (approximately 20 trainees) and March (approximately 15 trainees). In Bristol there is one trainee intake in September.

    Is it possible to go on client or international secondments?
    Yes, we are able to offer client or international secondments to most trainees at some point during their training contract. Trainees undertake secondments in their second, third or fourth seats. Further information can be found here.

    How many seats do I have to do during my training contract?
    The training contract is made up of four seats, each lasting six months.

    Are there any seats that are compulsory?
    We require all trainee solicitors to undertake a corporate-commercial seat and a finance seat. In order to fulfil the Solicitors Regulation Authority (“SRA”) requirements, our trainees are also required to do a contentious seat. Further information can be found here.

    How do I select which seats I would like to undertake?
    Trainees are asked to rank their preferences for their next seat approximately two months before each seat change. Seats are then allocated based on these preferences, the business requirements of the firm and SRA regulations. We try to take into consideration trainee preferences as much as possible.

    How is it decided which department I might qualify into after my training contract?
    Trainees who are approaching qualification are informed of the newly qualified solicitor vacancies available in the firm and asked to rank these in order of preference. This ranking is then compared to the preferences of the departments as to whom they would like to fill their vacancies.

    Will I get feedback during my training contract?
    Yes, trainees are given both formal and informal feedback during their training contract. All of our trainee solicitors have informal mid seat reviews and then a more formal review at the end of each seat. This helps us to identify their development needs, let them know where they have excelled and ensure that they are progressing well.

    Further information about the training you can expect to receive through our Trainee Skills Academy can be found here.

    See how your career will progress with our interactive career timeline.

    Who will I sit with during my training contract?
    Each trainee solicitor shares an office with an associate or partner who will be their ‘supervisor’. This ensures that they have exposure to real legal work from day one of their training contract and are well supported in their learning.

Paralegal Vacancies

  • Do you have any paralegal vacancies?
    We do occasionally have paralegal vacancies, however, we do not accept speculative applications. When vacancies arise they will be advertised on the careers pages of our website and should be applied for online.