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"My experience has been that talking to my colleagues and HR about my hearing impairment has really helped me understand better what support I need and has given me the confidence to do my job despite some of the challenges." - Valerie Kemp, Associate

Making it, not faking it – Being open about my disability in a Magic Circle law firm

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About Us

Slaughter and May is one of the most prestigious law firms in the world. We advise on high-profile and often landmark international transactions. Our excellent and varied client list ranges from governments to entrepreneurs, from retailers to entertainment companies and from conglomerates to Premier League football clubs. We are a full service law firm to corporate clients and have leading practitioners across a wide range of practice areas including Mergers and Acquisitions, Corporate and Commercial, Financing, Tax, Competition, Dispute Resolution, Real Estate, Pensions and Employment, Financial Regulation, Information Technology and Intellectual Property.

A World of Difference

There are clear differences between us and other global law firms.

At Slaughter and May we train each of our lawyers to be a multi-specialist equipped to advise on a broad range of legal matters, which at other firms would be handled by a number of different lawyers. We think that by broadening your training and experience, you will be a better lawyer. We have built a reputation for delivering innovative solutions to difficult problems. This reputation has been earned because each of our lawyers advises on broad legal areas, combining experience gained on one type of transaction to solve problems in another. In this way, our lawyers have a varied and interesting workload and ample opportunities to develop close relationships with clients.

Nearly all of our work has an international element and we have offices in London, Brussels, Hong Kong and Beijing. In other jurisdictions we prefer to remain agile by leading unified, hand-picked teams of lawyers from market-leading law firms. All the firms we work with across the world have a reputation for excellence and independence that mirrors our own.

At Slaughter and May we also take a different approach to time; there are no set billing or time targets. Some ideas take a matter of seconds but are can save companies millions of pounds a year. The type of work we do is not always measurable in minutes. In this way, our lawyers are free to work collaboratively, sharing expertise and knowledge, so that they can concentrate on what matters most, the quality of the work and client service.

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Did you know?

You will find people from a diverse range of religious, racial and social backgrounds at Slaughter and May. Among our lawyers, 24 nationalities and 61 different universities are represented.

We have a Multi-specialist approach

At Slaughter and May we don't pigeonhole our lawyers — all are trained to be multi-specialists across a broad range of legal matters. This is in sharp contrast to the experience that you might have at other City firms where, as a trainee in, say, a finance group, you may well work in a very narrow area of finance.

An international approach

Many of our trainees and associates have the opportunity to work abroad, either in our offices or in one of the firms we work closely with overseas. We believe that our secondments are especially beneficial because they give our lawyers the chance to experience a working culture very different from our own.

Our people

We value diversity and individuality very highly – different perspectives are crucial when it comes to providing innovative advice. You will find graduates from over 92 different degree courses, 84 different universities and 32 different nationalities at Slaughter and May. But there are shared qualities that help bind us together.

No billable hours targets

The answer to these questions is to leave the clocks outside. Although we record time, we have no billing or time targets. This means our lawyers are not forced to compete with each other to find the jobs or clients that bill the most hours. Equally, we are not forced to live under the stress of finding someone to bill for a set number of hours a day. This way, people have everything to gain from being selfless.

Accessibility Awards

  • Business in the Community Best Employers for Race
  • Stonewall Top 100 Employers 2018
  • Top 50 Social Mobility Employers Index 2018
    • We support a number of charities and non-profits who help us develop our culture of inclusion and engage with diverse communities:
      • 30% Club
      • Business Disability Forum
      • MyPlus Recruiters Club

  • Internship

    • 1st year open days Our open days provide first year students with an insight into the legal profession and City law firms.
    • Work experience schemes Our work experience schemes provide penultimate year students with the opportunity to get involved in legal work and attend training sessions.
    • Winter workshops Our workshops give finalists and graduates an insight into the firm and the work that we do. 


    • Training Contract During the two-year training contract, trainees turn their hand to a broad range of work, taking an active role in four, five or six legal groups while sharing an office with a partner or experienced associate.

    Additional Opportunities

    • Career fairs We hold our main presentations on campus during October and November. We also attend university law fairs and run skills events and workshops throughout the year. These events will be advertised with individual universities through their law clubs/societies, careers services and law faculties.
    • Law Society Lawyers with Disabilities Division work experience scheme We have participated in Law Society Lawyers with Disabilities Division’s work experience scheme, through which we offer disabled students a week’s informal work experience in one of our legal groups. Click the link for more information.

    Tips for applying

    Slaughter and May recruiters share their top tips for applicants

    • Check your application before you submit it Always take the time to proof read your application for typos or errors before you submit it or ask a friend to check it over for you.
    • Prepare for your interview Preparation is all about doing your research on us and being able to answer questions like why are you applying to us specifically and why do you want to work as a commercial solicitor?
    • Get in touch If you have any queries, contact the Trainee Recruitment Team. We will be happy to talk through any concerns and answer your questions.

    Your Plus

    Excellence never comes from just one perspective. Our teams are drawn from lawyers from different backgrounds and with different viewpoints. They deliver the best advice for our clients by collaborating to find innovative, commercial solutions. A fully open and inclusive environment ensures that the brightest minds will always flourish.

    We aim to employ the brightest minds regardless of what or where they have studied you will find graduates from over 84 universities at Slaughter and May. Disability is irrelevant to our application process. A law degree is not essential, only about half of our trainees studied law as undergraduates. 

    We like people with:

    • energy and spark who can relate to those around them
    • common sense, integrity and drive
    • a range of interests outside of the law
    • a sharp intellect our work is intellectually demanding so the minimum standard we look for is three strong A levels (or equivalent) and either a high 2:1 or a 1st in your first degree
    • independent thought
    • commercial awareness, resolve and judgement, an interesting take on things, the ability to show grit under pressure and a good sense of humour!

    To thrive here, you will also need enthusiasm, commitment and a willingness to accept responsibility.

    Recruitment Adjustments

    Slaughter and May is committed to ensuring that our recruitment processes are barrier-free and inclusive as possible to everyone. This includes making adjustments for people who have a disability or long-term condition. We have included some examples below but we would encourage candidates to get in touch to discuss their individual needs.

    • Extra time We can arrange for candidates to be given extra time to complete the written exercise and article reading.
    • Equipment/materials Candidates can bring their own equipment with them for example laptops with screen readers. We can also provide a printer if candidates would prefer to check their work in hard copy rather than on the screen and we can provide materials in a large font.
    • Timings We can adjust the timings of the day where necessary to include breaks.

    Workplace Support

    We have a Disability Working Group which includes representatives from across the firm, including partners, who work together to ensure our policies, practices and processes are inclusive of disabled people, and that our recruitment process is disability confident.

    MyPlus Graduates

    Read what these graduates have to say about their career, managing their disability at work, tips and advice for students.

    MyPlus Professionals

    Read what these working professionals have to say about their career, managing their disability at work, tips and advice for students.

    • Making it, not faking it – Being open about my disability in a Magic Circle law firm photo
      Making it, not faking it – Being open about my disability in a Magic Circle law firm, Associate at Slaughter and May

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