Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

  • City Law Firms
  • Manchester, London

Training Contract

  • Places: 40

Vacation Scheme

  • Places: 60 - 80

Firm stats

  • Total employees: 1,400




Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner is an international, full service law firm with over 800 lawyers, including approximately 200 partners and 80 trainees.

Our clients include over 50 Global Fortune 500 or FTSE100 companies, and over half of the world’s top twenty banks. We provide our clients with clear, practical legal advice to help them achieve their commercial objectives. The quality of service we provide to those companies has been recognised with seven Law Firm of the Year awards since 2004.

We have delivered client projects in over 130 countries via our international offices – our international business doubling in the last five years.

BCLP is seen as a leading innovator in the legal services sector. We are ranked in the top ten most innovative law firms in Europe by the Financial Times for delivering solutions such as: our Integrated Client Service Model; Streamline – BCLP’s proprietary legal service improvement service; our Integrated Dispute Resolution capability; and Lawyers On Demand.

BCLP thrives on talent and we invest heavily in helping our people to fulfil their potential. Across the entire firm we run 1200 training courses per annum – roughly five per day – and BCLP has been named the best graduate legal employer for four consecutive years by Legal Week.

Training Contract

Before you can start your training contract, you will need to have completed a Legal Practice Course (LPC). We will enrol you on our bespoke Masters in International Legal Practice (LL.M+ ), the first course of its kind. The LL.M+ has wider and more comprehensive practical and international subject coverage than any other available LPC programme and is designed to prepare you much more practically for the start of your career.

When you start at BCLP you will participate in a comprehensive induction programme, which is designed to prepare you for practice and to equip you with the practical skills needed to excel as a trainee at BCLP.

You will work on real projects from the outset, rotating through four, six-month seats in different parts of the business during your two-year training contract. We encourage trainees to undertake a secondment to one of our clients or an International secondment to one of our overseas offices.

You will have a lot of guidance and input into your seat allocations.  We work hard to match your seat preferences with the needs of the business; on average 80% of our trainees will receive their first or second preference each seat. That way, when decision time comes on your career, you'll be fully equipped to make the choice that's right for you.

You will receive in-depth department training at the beginning and during each seat, which will give you the legal know-how needed to get stuck-in. You will also have support from a dedicated training team and can expect to receive 232 hours of training by the time you are a qualified lawyer.

The deadlines for these are as follows:

Training Contracts: 30 July 2018

Vacation Scheme


There is no better way to experience BCLP than to join us on one of our vacation schemes. 

We run three schemes each year in London and typically take 20 students per scheme. In our Hong Kong office we run three month-long internship long schemes each year and take up to eight students per scheme

You will get to choose the departments you sit in and will be assigned a trainee 'buddy' who you will shadow.

You will very much be considered 'part of the team' and will be involved in every aspect of the department from client meetings to court runs and work with senior lawyers.

This not only helps you get a feel for the firm, but also helps develop your understanding of legal issues.

Apart from actually doing real client work, you will also attend a series of partner-led talks and workshops, to help build up your knowledge about BCLP and also improve your skill set.

But it won't all be work! You will have lots of opportunities to network with firm members in social settings. We arrange a lunch with partners, various social events with trainees and, if there are any firmwide events, you will be invited to attend. On previous schemes, Vac schemers have attended the firm Christmas party, a BCLP client 'dragon boat race' and have been invited to play in the BCLP sports teams such as tag rugby and softball.  

We want you to get the most out of your vacation scheme, so we expect you to ask lots of questions and get involved.

Given the level of investment made in people joining a vacation scheme, the recruitment process for our schemes is the same as our recruitment process for training contracts. You must first complete the online application form and aptitude test, and then if you are successful we will invite you to an assessment centre. During the scheme, you will be offered the chance to have a final round training contract interview.

The dates for our schemes in 2017/2018 are:

  • Winter 2017: 4-8 December (London) 
  • Summer 2018: 11-22 June and 2-13 July (London)

The deadlines for these are as follows:

Winter: 31st October 2017 Summer: 31 January 2018


School Programmes

The BCLP Career Kick-Start year 12 work experience programme will provide you with a detailed insight into what it’s like to work as a lawyer in a City law firm and in companies. We will provide you with practical skills which future employers will value. Furthermore, we will give you information on what you need to do to prepare yourself for, and carry out, your job search.

The programme comprises two weeks as follows:

Week One (23-27 July 2018) - A week at BCLP’s London office, gaining a real insight into what lawyers do on a daily basis via work shadowing as well as information on the different routes in to the profession and a number of skills sessions to help prepare you for the world of work.

Week Two (30 July-3 August 2018) – A week visiting a different company each day across a variety of sectors – including sports, financial services and media. During this week you will learn how law firms interact with their clients and the different roles for lawyers in these companies.

What some of the previous attendees said:

"This programme has been a HUGE help into my potential future choices."

"The biggest impact is the amount of confidence that has grown in me; I feel as though I can accomplish anything if I set my mind to it."

To apply, please complete an application form. Please note the closing date for applications is 31 January 2018.

Legal Apprenticeships

BCLP has been offering Legal Apprenticeships since 2015 and is committed to developing talent through this route. 

We partner with BPP University Law School to deliver the Paralegal Trailblazer Legal Apprenticeship and will be offering the Solicitor Trailblazer Legal Apprenticeships. 

If you are looking to start your career in law with the benefits of a nationally recognised qualification, a competitive starting salary, paid time off for studying and exposure to top quality legal work, then this is the programme for you.

Based out of our Manchester office, you will work with fee-earners in a variety of practice areas and will have great opportunities to progress your legal career with our firm.

We will be starting our recruitment process for September 2018 in early 2018 and we will be looking for strong candidates with good academics, a passion for law and excellent communication and team-working skills.  

Further details of our events and our application process will be available in early 2018.

Salary & Benefits

We fund the GDL and LPC courses, and also offer a stipend of £7,200 annually.

Trainee solicitors will receive £40,000 in the first year, and £45,000 during their second year. Newly qualified lawyers earn a fixed salary of £70,000.

Other benefits include  flexible bonus schemes, contributory pension scheme, discounted club and restaurant rates, health checks, season ticket loan, concierge services, insurance and employee assistance programme.


We recruit approximately 40 trainees annually. Our basic academic requirements are 340 UCAS points (AAB) at A-Level, and a 2:1 (or above) degree - predicted or obtained. 

There is no typical BCLP trainee. Our trainees come from a variety of degree disciplines and backgrounds. What makes our trainees alike is that they are hard-working, business-credible and ambitious; they also have the natural ability to get on with people.


AllAboutLaw Awards 2017

Training Contract Score: 80.7%

Vacation Scheme Score: 85.4%

Finalist - Best Website


To apply, please visit our trainee website, If you have any questions, send an e-mail to

Please check our website for a list of deadlines for our work experience opportunities and for Training Contract applications.

Assessment centres for our vacation schemes and for Training Contract applications will be conducted from late October onwards.