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Linklaters' trainees get 40 per cent maintenance hike" />
Linklaters has stunned its City rivals with a 40 per cent hike of the LPC maintenance grants the firm pays to its future trainees.
The magic circle firm currently pays its LPC students an annual maintenance grant of £5,000 if they study in London or Oxford, and £4,500 elsewhere. But, as first reported on www.thelawyer.com last Friday (2 September), this grant will be increased to £7,000 from September 2006.
Meanwhile, future trainees studying for a GDL in London will see their maintenance grants increased from £5,000 to £6,000, while their peers studying in institutions elsewhere will receive £5,000.
The huge increase in Linklaters' maintenance grants will coincide with the official launch of the firm's bespoke LPC course developed in conjunction with the College of Law's London branch.
In March 2004, Allen & Overy (A&O), Clifford Chance and Linklaters broke away from the eight-strong City LPC consortium to sign up to bespoke courses, while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Herbert Smith, Lovells, Norton Rose and Slaughter and May retained BPP law school as their exclusive supplier for the LPC.
A&O and Clifford Chance currently have no plans to increase their 2006 maintenance grants. Both firms pay LPC students annual maintenance grants of between £4,500 and £5,000.
Linklaters partner with responsibility for trainees Simon Firth told The Lawyer that when the firm launched the bespoke LPC, future trainees said they were happy to study in London, but were concerned about the cost of living. "Frankly, you can't live in London with £5,000," explained Firth.
He added: "The other driver is part of our market-leader strategy. We recognise that we need to pay top rates to attract the best candidates."