Frequently asked questions

If you haven’t been able to find what you're looking for, you'll find answers to the questions we get asked the most about below.

Frequently asked questions

Key Dates and Deadlines - 2018/19

Winter Vacation Scheme (open to all final year students and graduates of any discipline)

• 3 – 14 December 2018

Applications open on 17 September 2018 

Application deadline: 31 October 2018


Opportunities for first year students (any discipline)

Insight event for law students

• 10 - 11 April 2019

• 12 - 13 June 2019


Applications open on 2 January 2019

Application deadline: 28 February 2019

Summer Vacation Schemes (open to all students from penultimate year onwards and graduates)

• Summer 1 : 17 June – 5 July 2019

• Summer 2 : 15 July – 2 August 2019


Applications open on 17 September 2018

Application deadline: 6 January 2019


Training contracts (for law and non-law students and graduates)

• Applications open on 17 September 2018 for training contracts commencing in February and August 2021.

• Application deadline for non-law students and graduates: 31 January 2019

• Application deadline for law students (penultimate year): 31 July 2019

Birmingham training contracts (for law and non-law graduates)

• Applications open on 17 September 2018 for training contracts commencing in August 2019.

• Application deadline: 2 December 2018

*Applicants must select 'Birmingham training contract' when completing their application form

Campus ambassador programme for first year students (for law students)

Open to students from the following universities - Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Durham, KCL, LSE, Nottingham, Oxford, UCL, Warwick and York

Applications open on 2 January 2019

Application deadline: 28 February 2019


2019 Opportunities for African students (for students from Africa)

• Two week scheme in August 2019 – dates TBC

• Application by CV to william.spalding@hoganlovells.com

How to apply

Students apply online at www.hoganlovells.com/graduates

Social media channels

London Training Contracts

How many trainees are you looking to recruit this year?

Each year we aim to recruit up to 50 trainee solicitors.

Impact of Brexit

Brexit clearly creates a lot of uncertainty but also creates opportunities, particularly with our global practice and breadth and we have been focussing on the opportunities it creates.

For the last few years, we have invested significantly in understanding the potential legal issues of Brexit. We have created a Constitutional Change Taskforce, who have in place a toolkit and full suite of materials to help us best advise our clients on the impact on their businesses.

We have seen a positive response from clients, who have been impressed at the speed of our response and as a result we have seen significant work opportunities over the last few months. Due to our breadth of practice we are well placed in the market to advise our clients and, being part of a global business, many opportunities lie in working for our clients from across Europe and around the world.  


Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) reforms

In April 2017, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) agreed to introduce the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) and the new approach to qualification. New regulations are scheduled to come into effect from September 2020; however, this timeframe might change. 

The SRA is still at an early stage of the planning  process and we will update our website when further information is received from the SRA. www.hoganlovells.com/graduates

The SRA is currently consulting with City firms on the content and timing of the SQE assessments.  We are awaiting more information about what the SQE will examine, when graduates will take the assessments, the likely cost, and any impact upon training contracts.  It's possible that may firms will want their future trainees to complete an additional course in addition to the SQE preparation courses that we believe many universities will deliver.  This is so that future trainees are well prepared to work in City practices.  

Please direct any enquiries to the Trainee Development team who can talk through how the proposals might affect individual students at various stages.





What are you looking for in a trainee solicitor?

• Strong academic and intellectual ability. You need to be very sharp because the work we do is complex.

• Interest in Business. We are looking for people with a genuine interest in how businesses operate and the motivations behind people within them. You may not yet have all the answers, but you will be thinking about the questions and issues. 

• Ambition and motivation. You should have clear reasons for your career choice

• Good communication (written and spoken) and interpersonal skills. You should be able to articulate your thoughts clearly and connect with people effectively

• Professional attitude. You should be someone who will represent the firm and who understands the flexibility we need to deliver a service to our clients.

• International outlook. We deliberately hire people with an international outlook: professionals who are resilient and can adapt to new surroundings, respond to cultural nuances, tackle the unpredictable with confidence and take on responsibility


Which clients do you work for?

Please find a list of some of the firms high profile clients.  This list is approved for us to mention within the public domain.

21st Century Fox



Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Bank of New York Mellon

BNP Paribas

China Development Bank


Crédit Agricole


Deutsche Telekom


Eli Lilly & Co.

Ford Motor Company

General Electric

Goldman Sachs




Merck & Co., Inc.


Morgan Stanley


News Corp



Red Bull

Royal Bank of Scotland



Standard Chartered Bank


Can you describe some of the awards you have won recently?

Diversity & Graduate Recruitment

• Managing Partners Forum 2017 'Most inclusive firm' 

• LawCareers.Net 2017 'Best large City firm'

• Black Solicitors Network 2016 'Outstanding Multicultural/BAME Employee Network'

• Managing Partners Forum 2016 Award for 'Best Social Mobility Programme'

• LawCareers.Net 2016 Commendation for Diversity

• The Times Top 50 Employers for Women 2018

• Top 30 Employer for Working Families 2017

• Since 2008 Hogan Lovells has been part of the Stonewall Top 100 employers for LGBT 

• AllAboutLaw 2016 Award for 'Best Job Satisfaction' voted by our trainees



• Band 1 Dispute Resolution, Chambers Global 2018

• Winner Inernational Law Firm Leader of the Year, Asia Pacific 2018

• Ranked Top Tier in International Trade and Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action: Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices – Defence – The Legal 500 2018.

• Who's Who Legal's Life Sciences. Product Liability Firm of the Year 2018

• Italian Anitrust team winners of Contentions Antitrust. Legal Community Corporate M&A Awards 2017



• Winner: Banking and Finance Law firm of the year, Hong Kong

• Global iERP team named Legal Adviser of the Year – Partnership Awards 2017


• Law Firm of the Year for Pharmaceuticals Law – Best Lawyers Germany Awards 2018

• Law Firm of the Year for Real Estate Law – Best Lawyer Germany Awards 2018


Intellectual Property Technology and Media

• Winner: International TMT Firm of the Year – The Legal 500 UK Awards 2018

• Winner: International TMT Firm of the Year – The Legal Business Awards 2018

• Winner: Intellectual Property Team of the Year – The Lawyer Awards 2018

• Winner: International Intellectual Property Law Firm – Asian Legal Business Japan Law Awards 2017

• Winner: Best TMT Law Firm of the Year – Pravo.ru-300 Russia Awards 2017

• Winner: Sport and Entertainment Law Firm of the Year – Hong Kong Awards 2017

• International Intellectual Property Law Firm of the Year – Asian Legal Business Japan Law Awards 2017

• Best Law Firm (Italian TMT and IP teams) – The Legal Community IP & TMT Awards 2017


Global Regulatory

• Who's Who Legal's Government Contracts For of the Year 2018

• Regulatory Ranked 8th in the Global Competition Review (GCR) Global Elite Antitrust Awards 2017

What makes Hogan Lovells different?

• Our global reach:  No other firm in the City has the strength and depth that we have globally (in particular we are equally strong in the US and in the EU – the key financial markets).  We know that this wins us work. 

• Our breadth of practice: We have 5 practice areas (Corporate, Finance, LAE, IPMT and Global Regulatory) which means we are well-hedged.  Trainees are required to undertake seats in Corporate, Finance and LAE and can then choose a 4th seat (or opt for a secondment), giving them a well-rounded and thorough training. 

• Our culture: the work that we do is complex, challenging and market-leading, and our lawyers are bright and ambitious, but we work as one team and support each other.  We care about each other and the communities in which we operate.  This is a firm where you can be yourself.       

What are your closing dates?

• 31 January 2019 for non-law students

• 31 July 2019 for law students

How many people apply each year, and of those, how many do you interview?

Well over 3,900 candidates apply annually for our vacation schemes and training contracts. Depending on the calibre of the applicants we would expect 280 to go on to attend our summer and winter vacation scheme, training contract assessment days, or attend a first year programme.

Could you explain the assessment procedure?

The first step is to read carefully the information at www.hoganlovells.com/graduates, then fill in our online application form. If you’re successful at this stage, we will invite you to complete an online critical thinking test. If you pass this test, you will be invited to attend an assessment day. 


The assessment day is intended to be a two-way process to allow candidates to find out about us, and for us to find out about them. 


The assessment day includes: 

• an introduction to the firm from a partner or member of graduate recruitment

• a paper-based critical thinking test – a different version of the online test

• informal lunch and guided tour of Atlantic House with trainee solicitors

• commercial business exercise to see how you work in a team – a key ability for all our lawyers

• two interviews, one with partners and one with associates and graduate recruitment to assess your reasons for pursuing a legal career including your understanding of the legal and business world and your ability to respond to common situations that trainee solicitors deal with.

When can I expect to receive an offer?

Within five working days after the assessment day. We are confident of making the right decision promptly after the assessment day, and don’t wait until the end of the recruitment season to make our offers.

How long do I have to decide?

Students in their penultimate year of study will have until 15 September 2019 or two weeks after they have received their offer, whichever is the latest. Your offer will remain open until the 15 September; however you have the ability to accept your offer before this stage if you wish to do so.  Once you have accepted your training contract offer with us you should not be attending any further assessment days or interviewing for further training contracts with other law firms.  Students in their final year of study or have already graduated will have two weeks from the date of the offer.  

We offer extensive support to candidates throughout the offer process, while considering our offer. We run post offer drinks over the summer and ad hoc office visits/coffees/lunches to candidates to meet different members of the firm. 


Can I defer my start date once I have accepted an offer?

We do appreciate that candidates are making commitments quite a long way in advance and we will try to be as flexible as we can. However, deferrals should be discussed with the Graduate Recruitment team. It is advisable to let us know as early as possible.

Do you have any preferences as to where I attend Law School?

Along with other leading City firms, we have developed a Legal Practice Course (LPC) with BPP University in London. Studying the accelerated LPC at BPP is compulsory (subject to any changes we make upon the introduction of the new SQE).

We require all our future trainee solicitors to study the GDL at BPP University.  BPP have locations in Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Leeds, Liverpool, London or Manchester.  Depending on your individual circumstances you may prefer to study in a location closer to your current home.  However, studying in London would prepare you for City working life when you start your career.


How is the accelerated LPC structured?

The accelerated LPC programme has two intakes in the academic year.  One intake begins the first week of August and ends mid-February; the other begins the first week of February and ends mid-August.  

In addition, there will be a period of directed self-study prior to the start of face-to-face teaching at BPP University which students complete in their own time. It will be possible to complete the foundation study programme within two weeks but many students prefer to conduct it over a longer period.  Students will receive the study materials approximately two months before the course starts.

New joiners are asked to indicate which LPC intake they would like to join and we try to be flexible to accommodate, but the firm reserves the right to make necessary allocations and adjustments.

The LPC course will prepare you for practice in the City, either following the GDL or at the end of your law degree.


How has the course changed?

Greater emphasis is placed on the foundational self- study required by students before they start the course at BPP University.  

The Private Acquisitions elective has been incorporated into the business law and practice (BLP) module and it has been replaced by a Corporate Transactions elective.  The teaching time for the electives has been reduced to six weeks.

Students continue to have a personal tutor who will ensure that they are keeping on track with their workload and an additional weekly face-to-face meeting has been added to the schedule.

It is no longer possible for students to have a weekly study day and the teaching day runs from approximately 9.00am until 6.00pm.  On occasion students are required to attend teaching sessions until 7.00pm. 

The course is designed to give you a sense of what work in practice will be like – particularly in terms of time management and meeting work deadlines.


What does the LPC Link Programme involve?

The LPC Link programme is established to help in the transition from future joiner to trainee.  The programme is made up of social events and practice area specific talks.  

There is a Practice Area Fair where all groups are represented and LPC students can speak to groups and consider their seat planning options.


Do you sponsor students through Law School?

Candidates who accept the offer of a training contract with us will receive a grant. This includes full payment of fees and provides you with a contribution towards maintenance. The maintenance grant for the 2018/19 accelerated LPC is £10,000. The maintenance grants for the GDL are £8,000 in London and £7,000 outside London. 

Grants are reviewed in May each year.

The firm does not provide retrospective funding for law school fees or maintenance grants.


It is a long time between the time I am recruited and my eventual start date. Will there be any contact in between?

Yes, primarily with our Trainee Development team. The team is happy to talk to future joiners at any time if they have any queries, concerns or problems. You’ll also have contact with our Recruitment Partners, Louise Lamb and Jon Chertkow.  We also produce updates for future joiners on the latest Hogan Lovells news and events. 

We encourage prospective trainees to keep in touch with us, and with each other, as much as possible. We meet up with all future joiners currently at law school and host an annual event. We also hold regular receptions in the summer at our London offices to which all our students are invited.


What are your minimum criteria?

We look for a very strong academic performance and would expect candidates to be aiming to achieve at least a 2:1 (or the equivalent) consistently throughout their studies.

Since October 2015 we have been working in partnership with Rare Recruitment utilising their Contextual Recruitment System (CRS) tool which embeds social mobility metrics into our graduate recruitment application process, enabling us to measure an applicant’s potential in the context of their background. 

Factors taken into account include a candidate’s home postcode, school attended, whether they were eligible for free school meals, if they are first generation in their immediate household to go to university, and whether they were ever in care or once a refugee or asylum seeker.

The CRS produces two scores: a measure of relative disadvantage and one of performance, so that we can see how an applicant compares with peers from a similar background.

CRS has been positively received by the students, with 90% of applicants choosing to provide contextual data as part of their application. For 2016/2017 29% of hires had one flag or more, indicating they are from a disadvantaged background. This includes academic, personal or economic challenges that may have had an impact on their academic performance.

What happens if I fail parts or all of my GDL/LPC?

Our offers of training contracts are conditional upon passing the GDL and LPC at the first attempt.  On the rare occasion where this condition is not satisfied, each case is considered individually by the firm's recruitment partners, but we will withdraw a training contract if every effort has not been made to pass these important exams and where no mitigating circumstances exist.

Will you withdraw my offer if I do not get a 2.1?

Yes, unless there are mitigating circumstances which will be looked at on a case by case basis by the firm's recruitment partners.

Can I have some say in where my seats are?

We recommend candidates come to Hogan Lovells with an open mind about their seats and qualification destination.  One of the strengths of Hogan Lovells is the breadth, depth and strength of its practice areas.   We have a consultative process for allocating seats and future trainees can express preferences.  Whilst we cannot guarantee seats, we do accommodate preferences where possible. When it comes to qualification much depends on the vacancies that are available.  Vacancies are shared with the trainee population and trainees can decide which qualification roles they wish to apply for.  There will however be competition for some roles in smaller, niche groups.  This is why it is important to keep an open mind so our trainees have a range of options available to them.  Our qualification retention rates are healthy with 96% of our trainees remaining on qualification in September 2018.

How much responsibility can I expect whilst I am a trainee?

This depends on the individual. Our policy is to give as much responsibility as people feel happy with, and which they prove able to cope with. Taking responsibility is essential for a developing professional and we actively encourage this.

What if things go wrong, is there a network of support?

We provide a range of people to whom trainees can turn with any problem they may have, whether it is work-related or not. The Trainee Development team provides contact throughout the training contract. 

A partner/counsel mentor will be offered to provide personal contact with a senior lawyer in the firm. A trainee will have a supervisor in each seat, and every group has a trainee solicitor partner who is responsible for the work of trainees in the group.  During the first seat there will also be access to a trainee solicitor mentor, who will be a member of the firm’s Trainee Solicitor Liaison Committee. 

The firm makes a significant investment in its trainees – your success is our success.  

Apart from the practical work experience, what other training can I expect to receive?

We are particularly proud of our training programme which is given very high priority within the firm because we understand that formal training is as important as learning on-the-job. 

Trainees will attend lectures and courses throughout the training contract which have been designed to complement the practical on-the-job experience. Each practice area has its own training programme and trainees will complete the whole series of programmes by the time they qualify. We also provide a range of information technology training. 

HL BaSE is an innovative global business and social enterprise training program, aimed at delivering a sound understanding of business and the importance of social impact to the way our clients do business. As well as learning about business fundamentals, hearing from inspirational business leaders and embedding the ideals of social entrepreneurship into the way they think about business, attendees will also put their new found knowledge and skills to the test during the program by advising small businesses. 

See more information on HL BaSE at: http://www.hoganlovellsbase.com/what-is-base/business-and-social-enterprise-training-program/uk-course-program#sthash.OHGFnqNb.dpuf


Do I receive language refresher training, if I am going abroad?

The majority of the international secondments do not require language skills. However, if trainees are going to an office where language skills will be expected for business reasons, then current abilities will be assessed and training provided if required.  Ideally A-level standard will be a basic requirement to be eligible for training.

Once I have qualified, can I immediately go out to one of the international offices?

Trainees can apply to work in one of the international offices on qualification in just the same way as they apply to work in one of the London groups. Some of our newly qualified solicitors move into one of the international offices. However, in most cases we feel it is important to have up to two years post qualification experience in London.

What is the process for deciding which practice area I will qualify into?

Around the second month of the final seat, trainees will be informed about all the NQ vacancies available in the various London practice areas and international offices.  Trainees will also be invited to attend a qualification briefing held by Trainee Development to explain the process and give you an opportunity to brush up on your interviewing skills.

Trainees will then be invited to submit preferences to Trainee Development. Trainees can apply to any group, whether or not they have done a seat in the group.

The partners in the practice groups will interview all trainees who express an interest and will confirm to Trainee Development which people they wish to offer roles to. 

If trainees are not awarded a role following the first round, they are able to apply for any unfilled roles in the second round of the qualification process.  Further roles sometimes become available at this stage also.

What are your retention rates for newly qualified solicitors?

We aim to keep as many people as possible at qualification, depending on business needs every six months.  We invest heavily in our graduate programme and consequently we want to see people stay. Our retention rate in September 2018 was 96%.

What is the starting salary?

Trainees receive £45,000 per annum in their first year and £50,000 in their second year. Salaries are reviewed in May each year. 

And what is the salary on qualification?

This is £78,000, in line with market rates. Hogan Lovells will continue to review its salaries in line with those at other top City firms. 

Are there any compulsory seats which I have to do?

In order to meet SRA requirements, trainees must have experience in contentious and non-contentious work in at least three practice areas. Unlike some of our competitors, we have no difficulty meeting these requirements.  We require and encourage trainees to gain as broad an experience as possible within Corporate, Finance and Litigation practice areas (where there are most vacancies on qualification) and a range of other areas.

Why do you only offer four seats when some firms allow trainees to spend time in 6 or 8 seats?

We feel that a training contract based around four six-month seats offers trainees a real breadth of experience combined with depth of learning and experience.  Our focus is on ensuring that our trainees are given high quality work to do during their training contract.  Six months will pass very quickly, but it allows trainees to really understand the work they are doing and to be a key part of the team.  It also gives trainees enough time to understand the work they are doing and get a real feel for whether or not they would like to qualify there which means that they make more informed decisions upon qualification.  

Tell me about your international offices and client secondments?

All second year trainees have the opportunity to apply to spend six months abroad or six months with a client as part of their in-house legal team. Secondments are competitive and trainees need to be realistic when applying for these.  An international secondment can only be made available in offices with an English qualified lawyer.

We currently send 11 trainees to Brussels, Dubai (2), Hong Kong (2), Johannesburg, New York, Paris (2), Singapore and Washington.  Decisions are based on performance, preferences and personal qualities like resilience and maturity. 

During the second seat, we will give presentations on the international and client secondments, and trainees can apply for those that interest them.  Trainees will be expected to put together a business case to support their application. 

If trainees go on a client secondment, they will typically spend six months in the client’s in-house legal department. Clients to whom we currently second trainees include BNP Paribas, British American Tobacco, Citibank, ExxonMobil, Ford Credit, Merck, Standard Chartered Bank. A client secondment provides excellent commercial experience and an opportunity to take on more responsibility within a small team.

Currently, about 20 trainees will go on either an international or client secondment at each seat change. Depending on the size of the intake, trainees have a good chance of a secondment or international placement. For example, amongst the 2017 group of Hogan Lovells’ trainees to qualify, 78% had been on either an international secondment or client secondment.


Tell me about your pro bono work?

Citizenship is one of our core values and every member of the firm must undertake 25 hours per year of citizenship activities. Many do far more than this. For our lawyers, this would typically be pro bono work, using our legal skills to help those who need it as part of our award winning pro bono practice.  Hogan Lovells was the first City law firm to have a full time Pro Bono Manager and we now have four other pro bono lawyers working with our International Director of Pro Bono, Yasmin Waljee OBE, to manage our UK pro bono practice.

Trainee solicitors have a wide variety of pro bono programmes to choose from – to find out more about our pro bono work, visit the Pro Bono section of www.hoganlovells.com.  By way of example, some of our pro bono initiatives include: 



HL BaSE is Hogan Lovells' international social enterprise and social finance practice.  Our impact economy clients are leading the way on responsible and sustainable business whether by developing new technology to combat climate change or by advancing healthcare in underserved communities.  Our goal is to ensure that access to legal support is not a barrier to scale, enabling organisations to grow their impact in a sustainable way.  Our mission is accessible legal support for business as a force for good.

HL BaSE works in 3 key areas: HL BaSE Training, the firm's business and social enterprise school for junior lawyers, HL BaSE Catalyst, a programme of support for social enterprises in partnership with the firm's clients and HL BaSE Legal, which delivers legal advice to impact economy organisations.


Access to Justice

Our pro bono programme seeks to provide legal representation to individuals and charities who would be otherwise be denied access to justice primarily through tribunals, legal clinics, Coroner's Inquests and compensation applications.  In particular, this includes representation of members of the armed forces at war pension tribunals, welfare benefits tribunals (an opportunity for trainee solicitors to undertake their own advocacy), supporting the Yazidi community in relation to gross breaches of their human rights, seeking justice for women and children subjected to forced adoptions in Ireland's Magdalene laundries, and Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority applications for victims of terrorism, modern slavery and human trafficking.    

The pro bono practice in London includes both UK and cross-border work.  Our global Empowering Girls and Women Initiative was named Pro Bono Initiative of the year at the Lawyer Awards 2017. The initiative addresses gender-based violence and supports educations and work-related opportunity for girls and women. In 2016, we assisted 65 victims of gender-based violence, securing £294,797 in compensation for 18 victims in the UK alone.  Kevin Hyland, former Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner said: "The free legal work undertaken by firms such as Hogan Lovells is not only important to individuals at the time of their case but significantly reduces the chances of re-victimization and allows them to rebuild their lives" 

Our work varies depending on legal need.  We have a strong background supporting victims of terrorism.  From representing victims of the London 7/7 bombing, we are currently representing victims of the London Westminster, London Bridge and Manchester Arena terrorist attacks at Coroner's inquests and with compensation applications.


Tell me about your citizenship initiatives

As a truly global law firm, we recognize that our continued success owes much to the diversity of our people. Embracing our cultural differences and recognizing our strong local knowledge means we can deliver for our clients all over the world. This recognition of strength in diversity and a sense of togetherness permeates throughout the firm into all our practice areas, and so it is with our commitment to corporate responsibility (CR). 

Our global CR strategy is aligned with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): 17 goals designed to end poverty, fight inequality, and tackle climate change. This is the ultimate example of what can be achieved if we are willing to work together across sectors and continents on all levels. 

Our lawyers and business services professionals are each asked to dedicate 25 hours per year to pro bono legal and skilled non-legal volunteering activities benefiting the world around them. This is delivered through a combination of our five CR strands of Pro Bono, Diversity & Inclusion, Community Investment, Charitable Matched Giving, and Sustainability. 

Last year, we delivered roughly 247,000 hours across a variety of initiatives, but there were a number of themes that stood out time and again. Rule of law. Universal values. Compassion. Equality. Togetherness. 

Our citizenship strands 

Pro bono

Providing quality legal services to those most in need and least able to pay is an integral part of being a lawyer. We were the first firm in the City to establish a full-time pro bono unit in 1997, and we delivered more than 142,600 hours of pro bono work globally in 2016. Read more about our pro bono work.

Diversity and equality

Our success as a global legal practice depends on our ability to attract and retain the brightest people, and to foster a work environment where individuals from all backgrounds can reach their full potential. Read more about our diversity as a firm. 

Community investment

We support and develop projects that focus on poverty and exclusion in the communities in which we work. The excellent relationships we have forged with partnering agencies and local community leaders help to ensure our community work is relevant, well executed and sustainable. Read more about our community work.

Matched global giving: Touch 

We use our worldwide reach to partner with charities that help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Our current partner is Barefoot College, an Indian NGO that trains illiterate and semi-literate women to become solar engineers. We hope to donate US$250,000 by 2019 that will be used to train 400 women in 35 countries. Read more about our partnership with Barefoot College. 


We recognise our responsibility to carry out our business in a sustainable way and are absolutely committed to minimising our environmental footprint. Our environment policy is to raise internal awareness of environmental issues, minimise energy consumption, minimise waste, maximise recycling and reuse, travel responsibly, and procure responsibly. We organise a range of activities and events – we even keep bees on the roof of our building in London, looked after by a volunteer team of our people.


As one of the world’s leading law firms, we want to set the highest standards in terms of how we conduct our business and how our actions affect our employees, clients, suppliers and the wider community. 

Read more about citizenship at Hogan Lovells on our main website 


Tell me about your diversity and inclusion initiatives

We believe that career access to the legal profession must be open and fair for everyone. We hope to break down any perceived barriers that may be stopping prospective talented candidates entering the profession. We benefit from these initiatives by generating a wider and more diverse base from which to select our future lawyers.

We are involved in a number of initiatives designed to ensure fair and open access to all:

Diversity and inclusion

With our global reach, we have initiatives that are responsive to the varied needs of the diverse communities in which we live and work. Some of our most important initiatives currently include: 

• Women's Initiatives 

• Employee Networks 

• Diversity Awareness Initiatives 

• Mentoring and Professional Development 

• Engaging with Clients and Suppliers 

• Widening Access Initiatives 

In the UK we have established 50:50 (Women), Pride (LGBT+), Working Families, Disability and Wellbeing, Multicultural and StepUp (Millennials) Networks. Each network supports the Hogan Lovells diversity strategy by promoting a culture of inclusion. 


PRIME Work Experience Commitment

Hogan Lovells is one of the founding law firms of the social inclusion initiative called PRIME that launched in the UK in September 2011. Since May 2016 Hogan Lovells' Chair Nicholas Cheffings has been the PRIME Chair, making us the firm that will lead PRIME for a two year period.  

PRIME is a UK wide initiative that aims to provide fair access to good quality work experience in the legal sector for school-age students from non- privileged backgrounds. We provide three to five day work experience places to school-age students through the Pathways and Ladder to Law programmes. 

Hogan Lovells Ladder to Law 

Our Ladder to Law programme is our main PRIME initiative, that we run in collaboration with Rare Recruitment one of our key diversity partners.  The programme looks to raise aspirations and provide insight, support and work experience opportunities to students from Year 9 through to Year 13. We partner with 12 schools in London, Birmingham, Cambridgeshire and Leicestershire and the programme has a two tier system.

- Tier One involves Rare Recruitment going into the schools to run one-two workshops per year in Year 9, and one-two workshops per year in Year 10, and an event at Hogan Lovells in Year 11. These workshops are designed to show the students that they already possess many of the skills needed to become a lawyer.

- Tier Two is a two-year programme designed for Year 12 students genuinely interested in Law. The students find out about the programme through their school, but apply independently to Rare Recruitment. This programme features a number of different activities, run by Rare Recruitment and Hogan Lovells, including a mentoring programme. 

Pathways to Law

We are a founding sponsor of this programme, run in partnership with The Sutton Trust. It is aimed at talented students from non-privileged backgrounds. We offer work experience placements at the firm each February half-term.

Pathways Plus

Building on our involvement in Pathways to Law, we also offer work experience placements on an annual basis for first year university students studying Law.

Mature Student Applications - Birkbeck College, London

Hogan Lovells has a strong tradition of recruiting people who are transferring into law from another career. We particularly value the different skill set that mature recruits can offer. Working closely with the Faculty of Law at Birkbeck, we host a bespoke open day that enables mature students (many of whom are working to support their studies) to meet us to find out more about a career in law. 

Mature Student Applications - Open University

We welcome applicants from the Open University and our vacancies are always listed on their website. Many Open University students juggle a range of priorities and many have had previous careers that bring a diverse range of abilities relevant to law. 

Graduate Disability Event - OPEN

Hogan Lovells partners with a small number of City law firms to host an annual event comprising workshops, skills sessions and networking session. The event enables disabled students who are considering a career in law but who may previously have lacked the confidence to apply or seen their disability as a barrier, to meet with graduate recruiters and find out more about the application process. 

Hogan Lovells is a key sponsor of the My Plus Consulting website which is a key source for disabled students to find out more about Hogan Lovells and a career in law. www.greatwithdisability.com 

Graduate LGBT Event - DiversCity

Hogan Lovells partners with a number of City law firms to offer informal mentoring to LGBT students considering a career in law. The mentoring scheme is part of the annual DiversCity LGBT graduate recruitment event we support which comprises of interactive workshops, skill sessions, seminars, panel discussions and networking sessions regarding opportunities in the legal sector for LGBT students.

Rare Recruitment

We partner with Rare Recruitment, an organisation which works with students from many ethnic backgrounds to help them secure vacation schemes, internships and graduate jobs with a number of leading graduate recruiters. We regularly recruit Rare Recruitment students onto our vacation schemes and training contracts

African students vacation scheme 

From 2015 we have offered a two week programme for students from Africa.  The students work in practice areas dealing with African work.  Candidates should send a CV to Will Spalding.  

Dates for the 2019 vacation scheme are TBC (historically the programme has taken place in August).

British Paralympics Association (BPA)

We are the Official Legal Services Provider for the British Paralympics Association through until the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games. 


What makes Hogan Lovells different from your major competitors?

• Truly global coverage and work

• Diverse practice areas including strength in Corporate, Finance and Litigation

• Prestigious clients from many different industries

• Commitment to world-class training

• Collaborative, open culture

Students should explore our website to get a full sense of what sets us apart.  www.hoganlovells.com/graduates


Can I qualify into a Group that I have not done a trainee seat in?

Yes. Trainees can qualify into a group where they have not had a seat - although they will usually have had experience in a group which is closely related.

When do I do my Professional Skills Course?

The Finance and Business Skills modules are completed just before beginning the training contract. 

The Client Care, Professional Standards and Advocacy and Communication modules are taken during the training contract.


Can I have some say in where my seats are?

We try to accommodate the interests of the trainees, as well as meeting the needs of the business. Trainees will receive training that reflects the needs of the business.  However, as most post-qualification roles tend to be in the Corporate, Finance and Litigation practice groups, all trainee solicitors must spend six months in a corporate and finance seat and six months gaining contentious experience in our litigation practice. 

We request preferences for all trainees' first seats before they join, and will try to meet these requests where possible, bearing the above    requirements in mind. When a trainee joins they will be assigned to a member of the Trainee Development team, who will provide guidance and give advice throughout your training contract.

We will ask trainees mid-way through their first seat where they would like to sit in seats two, three and four.  We will provide information to help them make informed decisions and point them in the direction of associates and partners who can talk to them about work in their practice area.


Why do you recruit 50 trainees?

The firm reviews its business needs annually and 50 is the amount of trainees we feel are required to support the different practice groups.   Trainee recruitment through our graduate recruitment programme will always remain an important way of bringing in top talent.  For example in January 2018 we made up 5 partners in London, for of whom had come through the London graduate recruitment programme.

Birmingham Training Contracts

How long has Hogan Lovells had an office in Birmingham?

We opened the office at the end of 2014. It has been open for 3 and a half years.

How many people are there in the office?

The total number of people in the office is 55. There are 25 lawyers and 30 people in Business Support and Business Services.

How many people are there in the Legal Delivery Centre?

This team is led by Rachel Dabydoyal. There are 7 permanent paralegals and at any time we have had up to 50 contract paralegals working on different projects. With our expanded space we now have room to accommodate up to 100 contract paralegals at any one time.

What practice areas are represented in Birmingham?

There are lawyers working in corporate (covering both corporate and commercial), litigation, real estate and finance (covering both real estate finance and capital markets).

What type of work are you doing within these areas?

There are 2 types of work on which the office is focussing:

a) We have teams of lawyers doing more complex work, which is cost constrained, for large clients.  This covers a wide variety of work, with the ever increasing emphasis on offering a cost effective service to our clients.

b) Separately, the Legal Delivery Centre carries out document review and due diligence projects, resourced by a team of paralegals.


Are you doing "local" Birmingham work?

Attracting work from "local" businesses was not a driver for the opening of the office. However, during the time we have been here it has become increasingly apparent that the idea of a "local" market for legal services for the type of clients we represent is something of a misnomer. Our clients operate in a range of locations across the UK. However, some of our work does have a local focus eg the work we have done for our banking clients who are present in Birmingham and the real estate work we have done on Birmingham projects eg for Argent on Paradise Circus and for M&G on Snow Hill.

Are other London based businesses opening operations in Birmingham?

Yes. A number of organisations are looking to move some of their functions to Birmingham.  For example, a couple of significant high street retail banks are expanding their operations in Birmingham.  The Berkeley Group, a residential developer, has also opened an operation here. We have had a number of discussions with each of these clients about working more closely with them going forward and have already seen work coming from them. So, where it makes sense for us and the clients we will take on what some people call "local" work.

What Pro Bono and Citizenship activities is the office involved in?

The office is very actively engaged in a range of Pro Bono and wider Citizenship activities. We are supporting the Birmingham Children's Hospital in its work and fund raising activities and are involved in the full range of Touch initiatives. On Pro Bono we are working with KIND (Kids in need of defence) UK, Canne Project and HL Base Catalyst Networking. The office is very committed to all these activities.

How much space do you have in the Colmore Building?

When we were on the 10th floor we had just under 8,000 square feet across a third of that floor. With the move to the 8th floor we have trebled the size of the office to around 24,000 square feet.

What is the current mood in the Birmingham community about the future for Birmingham?

Everyone in the City is incredibly positive. The widely held view is that "this is Birmingham's time". There is a very significant amount of regeneration taking place in the City eg Paradise Circus, Snow Hill and the Smithfield site between New Street and Moor Street stations is coming forward for re-development. There is a lot of residential development taking place. There are excellent cultural and recreational facilities. HS2 is due to open in December 2026 with a journey time to London of 49 minutes. Other transport improvements are also planned for the City. The Commonwealth Games will be held in Birmingham in 2022 which will give the City a huge boost. The City is still hoping that Channel 4 will choose to re-locate to Birmingham. The West Midlands now has its first elected Mayor, Andy Street, the former managing director of John Lewis. He is highly committed to growth in the West Midlands and in Birmingham in particular.

What kind of work is done in Birmingham?

The office in Birmingham started operations in January 2015. Since then we have grown in size to over 20 lawyers and in August 2016 our first trainees started their training contracts with us in our Colmore Circus offices. Such has been our success; we have since recruited two more and will continue to recruit on an annual basis.

The recruitment process in Birmingham is entirely separate from the process in London.  Trainees recruited in Birmingham would not be eligible to transfer to London; nor would they be eligible for our trainee programme of international and client secondments.  Trainees will spend six months in each of the corporate (which includes commercial), finance, litigation and real estate teams in the Birmingham office.

In addition to teams of paralegals who conduct document reviews and due diligence work for different practice areas, our Birmingham team of lawyers works alongside our London teams where it makes sense to do this from a lower cost location, rather than from central London.  The team also works on matters run out of Birmingham. 

Vacation Schemes

Do you run a vacation scheme and if so, is this paid?

Yes. We currently run one winter vacation scheme and two summer vacation schemes. The winter vacation scheme is open to all final year students and graduates of any discipline.  The summer vacation schemes are open to all students from penultimate year onwards and graduates.

There is an organised programme of presentations, talks, discussions, visits and social events. Summer vacation scheme students spend time working in three different departments and winter vacation scheme students in two. 

The current rate of pay for summer (three weeks) and winter vacation schemes (two weeks) is £450 per week.  


What are your closing dates?

• 31 October 2018 for the winter vacation scheme

• 6 January 2019  summer vacation schemes

• 28 February 2019 for first year opportunities, including insight events for law and non-law students and the campus ambassador programme for law students 

Applications for all of our programmes open on 17 September 2018.


What are the dates for the vacation schemes?

• Winter vacation scheme - 3 – 14 December 2018

• Summer vacation scheme one – 17 June – 5 July 2019

• Summer vacations scheme two – 15 July – 2 August 2019.

If I am a final year or non-law graduate is it better for me to complete vacation scheme application or a training contract application?

It is entirely up to you which programme you decide to apply for.  However if you are keen to develop additional work experience you may prefer to apply for the winter or summer vacation scheme first. If you are successful in securing a space on a vacation scheme, you will complete a training contract application interview before the end of the scheme.

If your vacation scheme application is unsuccessful, you would be able to complete a training contract application in the same recruitment year.  You would not need to wait until the following year (from September 2019) to apply again.

If I am completing a year abroad as part of my law degree, when should I apply for a summer vacation scheme?

We ask law students to complete summer vacation scheme applications in their penultimate year of study. If you are spending time abroad in your third year, you would need to complete an application on your return to the UK, unless you will be based in a nearby country where we could reimburse you £100 economy travel fares to attend an assessment day. 

If I have completed an undergraduate degree in another country and am now completing a two year LLB in the UK which programme should I apply for?

You would be eligible to apply for the penultimate summer vacation schemes.

Do you hold interviews for the vacation schemes and training contracts?

Yes.  If you are successful in passing the critical thinking test, you will be invited to attend an assessment day.

The summer and winter vacation scheme and training contract assessment days will also consist of two interviews as follows:

• Winter, summer vacation scheme and training contract applicants will have an interview with two partners or a partner and a senior member of the graduate recruitment team to assess your motivations, understanding of and interest in commercial law and the business world

• A situational interview with a senior associate and a member of the graduate recruitment team to assess your ability to respond to common situations that trainee solicitors deal with.

• Training contract applicants will also take part in a commercial business exercise designed to test how well you work in a team

Candidates will attend an informal buffet lunch and guided tour of Atlantic House with trainee solicitors. 

Insight event applicants will only have to complete the critical thinking test online. 

What are your criteria for the vacation programme?

Exactly the same as for the selection of trainees. Competition is extremely fierce and places are limited, so apply in good time. 

We are looking for students whose combination of academic excellence and desire for specialist knowledge will contribute to developing business and taking it forward. Although we are one of the largest global legal practices, we work in small, hard-working teams where everybody is committed to our collective success. 

As a consequence of the high profile, demanding work we do, we expect applicants to show a track record of attainment with excellent academic results from GCSE (or equivalent) onwards. Candidates should be aiming to achieve, or have achieved, at least a good 2:1 (or equivalent) consistently, throughout their studies and as their final degree classification. 

The personal qualities our people possess are as important as their qualifications. You need to be happy collaborating with a team yet capable of, and used to, independent action. You will need to demonstrate an ability and desire for lateral thinking, be capable of close attention to detail, and have the energy, resilience and ambition to succeed in a top global law firm.

Insight Events

Do you hold any events for first year students?

We organise insight events for all first year students.  These initiatives are designed to introduce first year students to life in a City law firm and to prepare them for their second year at university, when they will start applying for vacation schemes and training contracts. 

We also host a number of events at various universities across the UK for first to final year students.  Students should refer to the events calendar listed under the 'events' section of our website for further information.  http://graduates.hoganlovells.com/events 


What are the dates of these for 2017/18?

Insight event for all students

• 10 - 11 April 2019

• 12 – 13 June 2019

Applications open on 2 January 2019

Application deadline: 28 February 2019


Work Permits

How is the new points-based immigration system impacting on your recruitment of international students?

The firm accepts applications from students who require sponsorship to work in the UK.  The firm will apply for a certificate of sponsorship (COS) for candidates prior to the start of a training contract.  However, individuals who require a work visa should ensure that they keep up to date with immigration regulations and requirements as they are continually changing.  If offered a training contract, future joiners requiring a COS should liaise with the Trainee Development team immediately to ensure immigration regulations are met.  Please note students/graduates who have not had continuous leave to remain in the UK since their undergraduate or masters degree will have to allow for a gap of six months between the end of the LPC and joining the firm, during which time they will have to apply for a visa from outside the UK, and should be aware that the firm will be required to meet the Resident Labour Market Test and apply for a COS from a capped national monthly pool with a variable minimum salary threshold.  

It cannot be guaranteed that visas will be granted.

Although student visa costs for the GDL and LPC are covered by the candidate, we can provide work visa application support and we will cover work permit costs when a trainee joins. 



What is the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS)?

The QLTS is a transfer scheme which provides qualified lawyers, who are not admitted as solicitors in England and Wales, with an alternative route to qualification as a solicitor of England and Wales to the domestic route. BPP Professional Education provides a QLTS Study Programme to help you prepare for the QLTS Assessment. This is not a BPP University Programme.

The QLTS Classroom Programme is currently only available to students from the EEA and those with indefinite leave to remain in the EU. Non-EU students can still subscribe for a Distance Learning Programme.


Do you offer sponsorship of the QLTS?

Our preferred route is the GDL and LPC route and we would not sponsor the QLTS. For qualified lawyers not wanting to progress through this route, you should refer to the main careers page of the Hogan Lovells website for information on associate opportunities to apply for  http://careers.hoganlovells.com 


How many lawyers work at Hogan Lovells?

  • There are over 800 partners
  • Over 2,500 qualified lawyers worldwide (including partners and excluding trainees)
  • Over 5,000 staff (everyone including partners, associates, and business services)
  • In London we currently have over 150 partners, over 400 lawyers including approximately 120 trainee solicitors
  • Over one-third of our London partners were trainees at the firm.

How many offices does Hogan Lovells have?

  • We have over 48 offices in the world, in 26 countries
  • Strong presence in the United States, Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Australasia.
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