Training contract

Start your career with Simmons & Simmons

Are you ready to join the world of law for the long-term, and start a lasting career with us? We’ve laid out this map of how your training contract will progress, but to make sure it’s right for you, there’s just one thing we need to know.

Law Student or Graduate

1

Take on the LPC

This is where our law and non-law trainees take their first steps together, with the LPC - or Legal Practice Course. Whether you’re joining us in London or Bristol, you’ll study for this at BPP Law School in London before beginning your training contract. The LPC is a year-long course, getting you ready for the practical experience of working in the legal sector. You’ll also have the option to complete an LLM in Commercial Legal practice by studying two additional business modules.  All your course fees are paid by us, and we’ll also provide a maintenance grant of £9,000. Again, you’ll be part of the future trainee community, and you’ll buddy up with a current trainee.

 

2

Begin the Compass programme

Our Compass programme marks the start of your exposure to life at Simmons & Simmons – and it begins at the same time as your year on the LPC. While you’re at law school, you’ll attend five contact days with the firm. Through these sessions, you’ll learn vital skills that complement your studies. You’ll understand our firm’s structure and clients, and learn the different working styles we’ll expect from you as a trainee and beyond.

3

Induction

Once you’ve completed your LPC, you’ll start your three-week induction. That’ll be in September for our Bristol intake, and either September or March for our London intake. We want you to thrive with us, so this module sets you up for a smooth transition from student to trainee. You’ll hear from senior leaders. Learn about our sectors. Build your people skills. Now, you’re ready for the big day.

4

Four seat rotations

After your induction, you’ll begin your first seat with us – that’s your first six-month rotation within one of our practice areas. Over the two-year programme, you’ll do four seats, and each one you take on will place you with a new team. That way, you get a broader perspective of the firm’s work and where your career might lead. We’ll ask you to complete a minimum of one and maximum of two contentious seats and either two or three non-contentious seats.

5

Secondment

The world of law isn’t just about what you do inside the office. It’s about understanding how our clients work, and how our broader team works. That’s where secondments come in, with the chance to spend one of your six-month seats with either a client or in one of our international offices.

Around 70% of our trainees will take on this opportunity in each intake, usually in your second, third or fourth seat. Whenever you do it, there’s a range of opportunities available: you might do anything from working in employment in Hong Kong to working in banking for a client in Canary Wharf. And whatever you take on, you’ll come to understand our clients’ world – and be a better lawyer as a result.

 

6

Following the Compass programme

Whatever your seats and whether or not you choose to do a secondment, you’ll keep following the Compass programme throughout your two years as a trainee. Alongside your practical work from day-to-day, our Compass modules will guide you on your way to becoming a well-rounded and highly competent lawyer.

 

7

Qualification

At the end of your training contract, you’ll officially qualify as a practising lawyer. As an NQ (Newly Qualified), you’ll move into the department of your choice, beginning the transition from trainee to associate. And of course, we’ll keep supporting you as you do.

 

8

Becoming an associate - and beyond

Associate status is the next goal after your training contract, and many of our trainees will find permanent associate roles with us. As a key member of the team, you’ll build on your specialist skills in your area of choice, working on day-to-day client work, business development, and mentoring younger members of your team. Now, you’ll start to aim higher, moving towards Supervising Associate, Managing Associate, and even making Partner, when you’re ready.

 

Non-Law Student or Graduate

1

Start with the GDL

If you’re a non-law student or graduate, the first thing you’ll do is the GDL, or Graduate Diploma in Law, at BPP Law School in London. It’s a year-long course, setting you up with all the basic legal skills you need, and we’ll pay your course fees as well as providing a maintenance grant of £7,500. And while you study, we won’t be far away: you’ll have a buddy, colleague visits, and plenty of events within our future trainee community.

2

Take on the LPC

This is where our law and non-law trainees take their first steps together, with the LPC - or Legal Practice Course. Whether you’re joining us in London or Bristol, you’ll study for this at BPP Law School in London before beginning your training contract. The LPC is a year-long course, getting you ready for the practical experience of working in the legal sector. You’ll also have the option to complete an LLM in Commercial Legal practice by studying two additional business modules.  All your course fees are paid by us, and we’ll also provide a maintenance grant of £9,000. Again, you’ll be part of the future trainee community, and you’ll buddy up with a current trainee.

 

3

Begin the Compass programme

Our Compass programme marks the start of your exposure to life at Simmons & Simmons – and it begins at the same time as your year on the LPC. While you’re at law school, you’ll attend five contact days with the firm. Through these sessions, you’ll learn vital skills that complement your studies. You’ll understand our firm’s structure and clients, and learn the different working styles we’ll expect from you as a trainee and beyond.

4

Induction

Once you’ve completed your LPC, you’ll start your three-week induction. That’ll be in September for our Bristol intake, and either September or March for our London intake. We want you to thrive with us, so this module sets you up for a smooth transition from student to trainee. You’ll hear from senior leaders. Learn about our sectors. Build your people skills. Now, you’re ready for the big day.

5

Four seat rotations

After your induction, you’ll begin your first seat with us – that’s your first six-month rotation within one of our practice areas. Over the two-year programme, you’ll do four seats, and each one you take on will place you with a new team. That way, you get a broader perspective of the firm’s work and where your career might lead. We’ll ask you to complete a minimum of one and maximum of two contentious seats and either two or three non-contentious seats.

6

Secondment

The world of law isn’t just about what you do inside the office. It’s about understanding how our clients work, and how our broader team works. That’s where secondments come in, with the chance to spend one of your six-month seats with either a client or in one of our international offices.

Around 70% of our trainees will take on this opportunity in each intake, usually in your second, third or fourth seat. Whenever you do it, there’s a range of opportunities available: you might do anything from working in employment in Hong Kong to working in banking for a client in Canary Wharf. And whatever you take on, you’ll come to understand our clients’ world – and be a better lawyer as a result.

 

7

Following the Compass programme

Whatever your seats and whether or not you choose to do a secondment, you’ll keep following the Compass programme throughout your two years as a trainee. Alongside your practical work from day-to-day, our Compass modules will guide you on your way to becoming a well-rounded and highly competent lawyer.

 

8

Qualification

At the end of your training contract, you’ll officially qualify as a practising lawyer. As an NQ (Newly Qualified), you’ll move into the department of your choice, beginning the transition from trainee to associate. And of course, we’ll keep supporting you as you do.

 

9

Becoming an associate - and beyond

Associate status is the next goal after your training contract, and many of our trainees will find permanent associate roles with us. As a key member of the team, you’ll build on your specialist skills in your area of choice, working on day-to-day client work, business development, and mentoring younger members of your team. Now, you’ll start to aim higher, moving towards Supervising Associate, Managing Associate, and even making Partner, when you’re ready.

 

A day in the life

Experience a day in the life of a Simmons & Simmons trainee – from taking on responsibility for client work to attending social events and getting involved with sports teams.

Benefits

There are plenty of steps on your journey, and your salary will change as you move through the programme and beyond:

Future trainee maintenance grant

GDL: £7,500
LPC: £9,000

Trainee salary package

London

£45,000 (first year)
£50,000 (second year)
£2,000 interest free loan

Bristol

£39,000 (first year)
£40,000 (second year)
£2,000 interest free loan

Salary on qualification

London

£79,000

Bristol

£52,000

Other benefits include

  • 25 days holiday entitlement
  • Pension contributions
  • Private medical insurance through VitalityHealth offering access to a Virtual GP service, discounted gym membership and health assessments. VitalityHealth also offer exciting rewards for completing active and health behaviours such as weekly Starbuck drinks, discounted Apple Watch and discounted Amazon prime membership
  • Employee assistance programme
  • GP visits
  • Eye sight tests and discounted glasses 
  • Risk insurances including life assurance, income protection, critical illness and personal accident insurance
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Emergency care provision for children and dependents
  • Payroll giving scheme to any charity you choose 
  • Music/Singing lessons
  • Payroll charity donation scheme
  • Season ticket loan
  • Subsidised staff restaurant
  • Travel insurance
  • Taxis home and free evening meals if working late