Travers offers trainees £10,000 to defer

Travers Smith has emerged as the most generous law firm so far in relation to deferring trainee solicitor start dates.

Travers Smith has emerged as the most generous law firm so far in relation to deferring trainee solicitor start dates.

The City firm is offering a payment of £10,000 to any future trainees who opt to defer for 12 months. The firm has offered optional deferrals to graduates who are due to join the firm in either September 2009 or September 2010.

Travers is capping the deferrals to a maximum of six trainees per intake. Travers offers 25 training contracts per year and though most start in the autumn a handful typically join in the spring. The 2009 and 2010 spring intakes have not been invited to push back their start dates.

Graduate recruitment partner Tom Purton said: “Our reason for this is very simple. It’s to ensure everyone is properly occupied in an environment where there are fewer transactions.”
The £10,000 cash being offered to future trainees is not coming with any strings attached. The vast majority of firms have paid £5,000 to trainees who have had their start dates delayed by a year.

Clifford Chance, however, is offering a flat rate of £8,000, which can be topped up by an additional £3,000 if the trainees decide to spend the year doing pro bono or community work or if they pursue further studies relating to law or a language.

Norton Rose, meanwhile, is offering up to £10,000 to students who put forward a proposal on why they should be eligible for the payment.

Hammonds and Simmons & Simmons have come up with the most novel ways to deal with junior staffing levels with the former sending future trainees on client secondments and the latter encouraging students to enrol on a firm specific MBA at BPP Law School.