Stephenson Harwood Stephenson Harwood

  • City Law Firms
  • London

Training Contract

  • Places: 20

Vacation Scheme

  • Places: 40

Firm stats

  • Total employees: 180 partners and 1,100 employees




Stephenson Harwood is a law firm of over 1400 people worldwide, including more than 180 partners. Our people are committed to achieving the goals of our clients - listed and private companies, institutions and individuals. We assemble teams of bright thinkers to match our clients' needs and give the right advice from the right person at the right time. Dedicating the highest calibre of legal talent to overcome the most complex issues, we deliver pragmatic, expert advice that is set squarely in the real world. Our headquarters are in London, with nine offices across Asia, Europe and the Middle East. In addition we have forged close ties with other high quality law firms. This diverse mix of expertise and culture results in a combination of deep local insight and the capability to provide a seamless international service.

Training Contract

Here at Stephenson Harwood, we take on just 20 trainees per year. Join us and not only will you be a valued member of our diverse, global team, you'll have a real opportunity to make your mark on the future of our firm. There's a lot to look forward to as a trainee at Stephenson Harwood: top quality global work across a range of sectors, an environment that balances cutting edge work with a respectful, friendly culture, and the chance to prove yourself on an international secondment. We work in small teams, so every person is critical – that's why we'll expect you to work to the best of your ability every day.

Our training is not only structured and practical but highly personalised, so you'll have everything you need to develop along a career path that's absolutely right for you. Following a week's intensive induction and a comprehensive post induction programme you'll complete four seats – each six months long – across different practice areas. We ask for your preferred choices so we can accommodate them wherever possible.

Whatever the practice, you can expect extensive exposure to our clients and stimulating, cutting edge projects. You could find yourself working on anything from a high-profile £multi-million financial litigation case to a ground breaking M&A deal. You could even spend time on secondment at a client's office, absorbing a totally different business culture first-hand. We also encourage our trainees to apply to gain experience overseas in our Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Dubai or Paris offices.    

Vacation Scheme

Placement schemes

Our winter, spring and summer placement schemes will give you a real taste of life at the firm. We’ll make sure you’re involved in quality work and will try to help you experience any areas of law you’re particularly interested in. Typically you’ll spend one or two weeks in our offices, sitting with qualified lawyers and tackling some case work. You’ll also benefit from an organised programme of interactive sessions, talks and social events.

On your first day, we’ll assign you a buddy – a current trainee who’ll help you settle in, answer your questions and give you an honest overview of what it’s like to work for us.

A placement gives you a great opportunity to talk informally to existing trainees, lawyers, partners and support teams to find out just why the law and Stephenson Harwood are such attractive career options. What’s more, we’ll pay you £380 a week.

Open days

Come along to a virtual open day in November or December, or an in-house open day in January or March and get a good feel for what a career at a mid-sized international law firm is really like. You’ll meet partners, associates and trainees as well as the graduate recruitment team. We’ll outline what to expect as a trainee and explain the type of work we do. You’ll also take away helpful information about our training contract plus answers to all your questions and the confidence to make the right career decisions.

Find out more at here


Our solicitor apprenticeship offers you an exciting opportunity to work on deals with international clients while also studying and working towards a level 7 solicitor apprenticeship standard. 

On the academic side you will gain lots of useful knowledge which you’ll be able to use in your everyday work. BPP Law School will teach the course through a combination of online and face-to-face learning and you’ll have one day a week to dedicate entirely to your studies. 

You’ll be part of a team of partners, associates, trainees and paralegals; you can expect to be helping our lawyers with a variety of tasks. You could find yourself working on anything from a high-profile, £multi-million financial litigation case to a ground-breaking M&A deal. You could also spend time on secondment at a client’s office, absorbing a totally different business culture first-hand.  We would also encourage you to take up one of our international secondment opportunities for our apprentices in our offices in Dubai, Hong Kong, Paris, Singapore and Seoul – it's an incredible chance to expand your horizons, experience new cultures and explore our global network. 

It will be a challenge but we’ll provide you with lots of support with a dedicated supervisor and buddy/mentor and lots of opportunities for training and development.

Find out more information here -

Salary & Benefits

Expect a competitive salary from day one, a flexible package of benefits that you can tailor to your specific needs, and much more.

We want you to feel valued so we’ll offer you a trainee solicitor salary of £43,000 in year one and £47,000 in year two. Our current NQ salary is £75,000. 

We offer a range of flexible benefits including: child care vouchers, critical illness cover, cycle2work loan, dental health scheme, give as you earn (GAYE), online gym membership, 25 days' paid holiday a year, private health insurance and screening, life assurance, pension, private GP services, retail vouchers, subsidised café, and a travel to work loan.


Firstly we look for a quick intellect. As well as at least a 2:1 in any subject area plus 320 UCAS points or equivalent, you'll need strong analytical skills, sound judgment, imagination and meticulous attention to detail. Also vital are the communication skills to be persuasive and build rapport, plenty of drive and determination, plus a keen interest in business.


Find out more and apply here

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