Trainee programme FAQ'S
Can I qualify early if I have some exemption from a training contract?
Although you may be entitled to apply to the Law Society for exemption from part of your training contract you will still be obliged to complete your two year contract with the firm unless it is mutually beneficial for you to complete your contract early.
Do trainees generally get kept on at the end of their training contract?
Hodge Jones & Allen’ retention rate of trainee solicitors is approximately 85%. We regard our trainees as very important members of staff and hope that trainees will want to stay on and eventually become partners. Many of our current partners started off as trainees of the firm.
How many seats do I need to do?
The training contract is for a two-year period and it is usual for trainee solicitors to complete four seats of six months each. Occasionally, trainee solicitors will complete a double seat but it will depend on the trainee and the departmental needs.
Which departments have seats available?
Trainee solicitor seats are available in the following departments: Criminal Defence, Personal Injury, Medical Negligence, Dispute Resolution, Family Law, Employment Law, Private Client, Housing Law and Civil Liberties & Human Rights.
Do I get a choice of seat or can I express a preference?
Before starting your training contract you will be asked to list your seat preferences, you will then be given the opportunity to review this every six months. The firm cannot guarantee that you will have the opportunity to spend a seat in all of your preferences but it will do its best. You will have to spend at least one seat in a non-contentious department to comply with Law Society training requirements.
Is it a good place to work?
As the firm has more than 200 employees, based in our office at 180 North Gower Street, there are lots of opportunities for socialising outside work time. The firm has regular activities and entertainment events including a Christmas Party, and quarterly drinks in our bar. There are lots of friendly and interesting people who work at the firm for you to get to know.
What is the salary for a trainee solicitor?
The starting salary for trainee solicitors at Hodge Jones & Allen starting in September 2023 will be £26,530 per annum, rising to £28,611 per annum in the second year of the contract.
Will I be doing administrative work such as photocopying?
Not normally. Trainees work as fee earners and generally don’t do administrative or non-chargeable work. The firm employs administrative clerks who undertake these tasks, though you may be expected to help out when necessary.
What sort of training/supervision will I receive?
You will normally share a room with a partner or senior solicitor and work closely with them. They will give you work to do and closely supervise what you do. You will have an opportunity to do particular tasks on larger cases and may occasionally have conduct of your own matters, where appropriate. The firm also has a mentoring scheme for its trainee solicitors, in which past trainees who are still with the firm mentor current trainees, to provide support and informal advice and guidance about any relevant issues of concern. The firm also has a Partner, Agata Usewicz, who has particular responsibility for the firm’s Trainees, and with whom any problems can be raised.