Fast Track

Fast Track is the easiest way to get a training contract or vac scheme. It puts you in touch with some of the best firms in the UK and all in under five minutes. If you type fast.

TCs here

Want to know more about the training contracts at individual firms? Training Applications features brochures, information and application details for leading firms.

UK City Firms

Norton Rose Fulbright (London)

Our view...

Norton Rose joined the club of truly global firms in 2012 when it merged with US firm Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, to become Norton Rose Fulbright. The firm is now based in over 50 cities, and has a pretty hefty headcount of 3,800 lawyers. Turnover was a very respectable £391m in 2016, with profits in the order of a solid £112m in 2016, a modest rise of 2% from the previous year.

For such a big firm we've heard that it's a friendly place, with trainees and new assistants reporting that they are warmly welcomed and very quickly get into the swing of things. The general view is that it is a big City firm that is pleasant to work at, with good work and none of the hothouse culture found in some of its competitors. Well, maybe some. Whatever's in the water at NRP, it's  - the firm usually performs well in the Firm of the Year Survey, especially for the white chocolate and macadamia cookies. These delicacies are, however, always out of stock, victims of their own success. Only slightly less impressive are the toilets, which make a sound like a "whale's mating call when you flush".

Obviously - this being a City firm - the banking and asset finance groups are very busy, and long hours are required, but even here the atmosphere is decent enough. Pay is OK (and - supposedly - completely merit-based once you qualify so the salary bands to the right are just to provide an indication of the wedge associates 1PQE and above can expect), and a bonus kicks in once you bill in excess of 1,500 hours. This starts at 5%, and rises to 30% for those who bill more than 2,500 hours. Although if that's you, all you'll be fit to spend it on is psychiatric care.

Despite that, the firm says that it takes work/life balance very seriously. Certainly there's "no face time required". There are pastoral schemes in place for assistants and mentoring programmes for trainees, and several support staff, assistants and partners take advantage of part time or flexible working schemes (currently 8% of London associate are on some form of flexi-working). Unusually for a big firm, it's possible for a part time assistant to be promoted straight to the partnership. And you get to work in the very smart London Bridge HQ overlooking the river, Sadiq Khan's office and Tower Bridge.

On the downside, trainees say that there's not as much hands on experience in departments outside of property and litigation, but such is the lot at all large firms working on billion pound deals. In general, training here seems to be, well, a real laugh. Bank on spending at least one of your six seats overseas - and, if you're really lucky, two. And there's oodles of sporting and drinking activity. Having said all that, there's a whispered suggestion that it all comes to an end on qualification and the true face of the firm shows - "that of a greasy old bum".

Final word to the most excitable associate in law firm history: "A great law firm, the perfect quality work, top quality people. The meeting rooms have toffee crisps - for free. It is like if a law firm was also a children's story." Hmm.

For more information on Norton Rose Fulbright click here

For more information on Norton Rose Fulbright click here


Salary (1st seat trainee): £44,000
Salary (NQ): £75,000
Salary (1PQE): £76,000
Salary (2PQE): £82,000
Salary (3PQE): £91,000
Salary (Salaried partner):

Bonus Scheme

Bonus scheme: Yes
Typical bonus as % of salary
- NQ: %
- 1PQE: %
- 2PQE: %
- 3PQE: %
- 4PQE: %
- 5PQE: %
- Partner: %


Grant for GDL: £6,000
Grant for LPC: £7,000
Training places per year: 58
% of trainees retained: 77%

RollOnFriday Firm of the Year Scores

Salary: 69%
Development: 75%
Work/Life: 64%
Openness: 70%
Biscuits: 85%
Toilets: 73%
Social: 71%
Firm of the year overall score: 71%


Holiday allowance: 25+
Flexi holiday: No
Pension: Defined contribution up to 5% if aged over 25
Healthcare: Yes
Maternity policy: Enhanced, subject to length of service
Target hours: 1500
Childcare vouchers: Yes
Gym: Subsidised
Restaurant: Yes, subsidised
24 hour photocopying support: Yes
24 hour secretarial support: Yes
Other: Concierge service Volunteering scheme for all staff up to days a year Car salary sacrifice scheme Interest free loans for season tickets. Bicycle scheme. Private medical/ income protection and life assurance.


News Stories

Norton Rose offers $3m to settle female ex-partners' underpayment claims
Closing the gender pay gap their way ... read more >
Norton Rose Fulbright partner tricked by Trump email hoaxer
Gave solid advice about Kushner's smut ... read more > (3 comments)
Norton Rose partner tore down my Nelson Mandela postcard claims suing rival
She also alleges that NRF asked her firm to fire her before their merger ... read more > (2 comments)
Exclusive: Norton Rose Fulbright raises salaries for all junior lawyers
Hits back at claim it awarded selective rises ... read more > (2 comments)
Exclusive: Sticky-fingered Norton Rose seccy changed name to join new firm
Ban from profession didn't stop her ... read more >
Norton Rose Fulbright blasted by judge for fees
But if a partner can't bill 40 hours on top of your 235, how will he eat? ... read more > (12 comments)
Norton Rose Fulbright merger target mired in sexual discrimination scandal
Chadbourne & Parke voting to expel female partner as more women accuse it of sexism ... read more > (2 comments)
Norton Rose Fulbright moves 170 jobs to the Philippines
Whilst Dentons axes 50 support staff ... read more >
DAC Beachcroft announces perfect trainee retention results
Norton Rose, CMS and Clydes are a bit meh ... read more > (4 comments)
Exclusive: Law Society slams firms for bias towards clients' kids
After Norton Rose Fulbright partner offers perks to the people paying the bills ... read more > (13 comments)

Your Views

Feel free to enter your comments on the news story below, subject to our terms and conditions. Please note that comments are subject to moderation and so will not appear immediately.

Please keep it nice. Thanks.

Be the first to add your view