Graduate scheme

Greater London

Sidley’s London office offers students the best of both worlds—the experience of working in one of the largest international law firms along with the relaxed, down-to-earth friendliness of a smaller office. Here you will find high-quality work on par with Magic Circle firms and an energetic, meritocratic and supportive environment.

There is a world of opportunities for you to get involved and make your mark at Sidley, from trainee right through to partner. We have a reputation for working on innovative, complex transactions, which helps to make life here all the more interesting and challenging.

The London Office


Sidley London’s Corporate Social Responsibility programme has been designed to allow our employees to help with the causes that mean the most to them while also working collectively to address the primary needs of our local community. All Sidley London personnel are allowed up to two community investment days, which allow them paid time off to work with any registered charity of their choosing. Our charitable partnerships focus on young people and equal access to City careers. Annually, Sidley personnel mentor around 20 young people from a local academy to raise aspirations and encourage them to focus on their studies. The London office also runs a work experience week in collaboration with the PRIME Commitment. This allows a group of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to learn more about life in the City. In 2021, our CSR programme is expanding to include a CSR flagship so we can have an even bigger impact on our local community.

Diversity & Inclusion

Sidley’s commitment to diversity & inclusion is not limited to policies but shown in the level of support provided, making this key to life at the firm. We have two global committees, both of which focus on pursuing strategies that maximize the firm's success in attracting, recruiting and promoting lawyers from groups typically underrepresented in the legal profession to partnership and positions of authority and leadership within the firm. Such underrepresented groups include, but are not limited to, ethnic minority lawyers and women. The key thing to note is that both committees have a direct line of communication to our Management Committee and our Executive Committee. This means that all voices are heard and information about the experience of being a lawyer here flows to the very people who make decisions about how the firm is run.


Sustainability has always been a key priority for the London office and impacts the way we work on a daily basis. Externally, we ensure that all vendors who provide a service for our London office share our environmental values and are focused on limiting our impact and finding suitable eco-friendly alternatives. In 2020, the London office relocated to a brand new building which was designed with sustainability in mind. All Sidley personnel are required to use a central recycling bank and are given reusable coffee cups, there are no single-use plastics in the office, and printing capabilities are tailored to minimize paper waste. Sidley London also runs an awareness initiative in collaboration with our working group, the Environmental Awareness Group. This group allows employees from all levels of the firm to generate ideas for change and best practice, and has a key focus on increasing internal awareness about the small differences individuals can make to minimise our impact as a collective.

During Your Training

You will have many opportunities to learn and develop during your training. You will get involved in real work from day one, and will gain international experience not by constantly traveling but by working on multijurisdictional matters and with people from all around the world.

Trainees spend time in at least four of our practice groups, which include: Banking and Financial Services, Capital Markets, Global Finance, Healthcare and FDA, Insurance, Investment Funds, Litigation, M&A and Private Equity, Regulatory and Enforcement, Restructuring and Tax.

Trainees also have the opportunity to apply for international secondments to Hong Kong and Brussels as well as a client secondment.

In each group, you will be supervised by a partner or associate to ensure that you receive individual training, which is both effective and based on practical experience. In addition, there is a structured timetable of training on a cross-section of subjects.

We take a flexible approach that is driven by your ability and willingness to contribute and develop. As a result, you can get as much as you like out of a particular seat, depending on how much you invest in it.

Compensation and Benefits

The firm provides a market leading benefits package. 

GDL/LPC and Financial Assistance

We offer ?nancial assistance to our future trainee solicitors for the GDL (if applicable) and the fast-track LPC, and expect both courses to be studied at BPP Law School. We pay the course fees and provide an annual maintenance grant, which currently is £11,000.

Continuing Your Career with Us

When you join us, we’d like it to be for the long term. We have an excellent track record of retaining trainees on quali?cation. Ideally, you will stay at Sidley once you’ve quali?ed and continue developing with us all the way to partnership.

How to Apply

Each year we take on around 12-14 recruits. We’re looking for people who are bright, with outstanding academic qualifications. You’ll need to have a minimum of three A-levels (at least three A grades), and to have (or be expected to achieve) at least a 2.1 degree or equivalent (not necessarily in law).

Beyond pure academic ability, we’re looking for people who are genuinely intrigued by the commercial world. People who are sociable, who can work well with others and get on well with clients. People who have demonstrated self-discipline, the ability to persevere and use their initiative. If you can focus, analyse things and ask the right questions, you’ll be in a strong position.

We aim to recruit all of our trainees from the vacation schemes.

More Details

Apply by





Greater London

Cherry picked opportunties

Cherry picked opportunties

delivered directly to your feed