Mayer Brown International LLP

Mayer Brown International LLP

Address: 201 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 3AF




Survey results


The lowdown (in their own words...)

Why did you choose this firm over any others? 
 '‘Experience on the vacation scheme’; ‘I liked the variety of strong departments the firm has’; ‘its global reputation’; ‘the friendliness of the people’; ‘secondment opportunities’; ‘contentious work on offer’; ‘the people I met at the assessment centre were very friendly and down-to-earth’; ‘great clients’; ‘global presence whilst retaining British working culture’; ‘people I met at law fairs and recruitment events’
Best thing about the firm? 
 '‘Great people’; ‘some great characters in the office’; ‘the location’; ‘friendly atmosphere’; ‘the range of international work available’; ‘everyone is hard-working’; ‘the level of work is really good’; ‘good-quality clients’; ‘the client secondments’
Worst thing about the firm? 
 '‘It doesn’t offer consistent qualification opportunities across all departments’; ‘the long hours’; ‘some departments have more demand for trainees than others’; ‘lack of integration between trainee intakes’; ‘the social life’; ‘lack of flexible working policy’; ‘the fact that major decisions regarding the firm’s direction still appear to come from the US’
Best moment? 
 '‘Running completions single-handedly’; ‘while on client secondment, successfully negotiating a deal with several partners at a large international law firm’; ‘drafting transaction documents’; ‘being on conference calls with the client and counsel’; ‘the run up to Christmas involved a lot of dinners and drinks events’; ‘running the due diligence for a deal in my first month’
Worst moment?
 '‘An extremely busy period in one of the transactional departments’; ‘proofreading documents through the night’; ‘being quiet during the day but busy in the evening’; ‘having to work seven hours on a Saturday’; ‘having to confess to a partner that I had made a typo on a document which had already been circulated’'

If the firm were a fictional character it would be...

Marge Simpson – soft on the inside, but has a competitive exterior and can compete with the best

The Verdict

The firm

Mayer Brown has 90 partners based in London, and earns positive reviews in the City for its finance, insurance and projects practice groups. The firm opened an office in Dubai in June 2016 to add to its already extensive global network. Mayer Brown was shortlisted for Real Estate Team of the Year at the Legal Business Awards 2016. 

The star performers

Acquisition finance; Asset based lending; Bank lending – investment grade debt and syndicated loans; Banking litigation: investment and retail; Commercial contracts; Corporate tax; Debt capital markets; Derivatives and structured products; EU and competition; Emerging markets; Employment: employers; Equity capital markets; Financial services (non-contentious/regulatory); Flotations: small and mid-cap; High yield; Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP); Mining and minerals; Pensions dispute resolution; Securitisation; VAT and indirect tax.

The deals

Acted for Autopista del Sol, Concesionaria Española on the €570m Autosol project bond; advised arranger RBS on updating its €35bn programme for issuing notes governed by English and German law; advised Progroup on multi-jurisdictional aspects of its €400m inaugural bond issue; advised Bank of America Merrill Lynch as arranger on the €145m Taurus pan-European CMBS; advised Entertainment One on the implementation of an executive incentive plan.

The clients

CF Lending; Citigroup; Deutsche Bank; European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; HSBC; Hibu; ISDA; Liberty Speciality Markets; UniCredit; Wells Fargo.

The Verdict

Mayer Brown offers a ‘range of international work’ as a result of 21 ‘global offices’. The ‘down-to-earth’ firm is praised by trainees for offering ‘top-class training’ with ‘lots of opportunities to attend talks and meetings’. The firm champions a ‘strong work ethic’ and its ‘quality lawyers’ give ‘formal training sessions’ to trainees. There is a ‘small trainee intake’ so all the trainees are ‘good friends’. Recruits receive a ‘lot of responsibility’ and ‘high-quality work’ such as ‘drafting agreements from scratch’ and ‘attending face-to-face meetings with clients’. The ‘work is interesting’, and trainees have the opportunity to take on more responsibility which can include ‘running completions single-handedly’. As well as the understandable ‘rookie mistakes’, the ‘very long hours, weeks and occasional all-nighters’ is something trainees grumble about. Top trainee moments include ‘running and completing a small real estate transaction from start to finish’, ‘successfully negotiating contract terms with lawyers from another firm on my own’ and an ‘international secondment to Hong Kong’. The firm has ‘strong departments’ in finance, insurance and projects. But some trainees feel there is a ‘lack of scope to consider seats for qualification in non-core departments as they take on fewer qualifiers’. Notably, the ‘open-door policy’ encourages the ‘friendliness and personalities of people’ to shine, regardless of seniority. People have ‘friendly conversations with each other’, and trainees love the ‘great characters in the office’, but would like to see ‘more social events arranged’ by the firm. Those aspiring to ‘learn a lot’ in a top City firm should take a closer look at Mayer Brown.

 Why Mayer Brown? …

Michelle Ansah first-seat trainee, Mayer Brown International LLP 
Departments to date:  Corporate
University:King’s College London 

The vacation scheme was a great opportunity for me to experience the day-to-day activities of lawyers at the firm. During my two-week Easter vacation scheme, I was exposed to two different practice areas and given tasks from my supervisor and other members of each department who were extremely helpful and took the time to explain tasks, projects they were working on and answer any general questions that I had. Our visit to the firm’s Paris office during the vacation scheme was also a highlight and reinforced Mayer Brown’s international presence.

After accepting my offer, I studied the LPC at law school alongside fellow future Mayer Brown trainees. This also provided a great opportunity to get to know my future colleagues. The firm was actively involved in our LPC course, which involved key modules and carefully selected electives in order to prepare us for working at Mayer Brown. Alongside the LPC, the firm offers a bespoke course tailored for Mayer Brown trainees which allows for regular visits to the firm, which meant that I was already familiar with the office before my first day of my training contract.

I am currently in my first seat in the corporate department where I share an office with my supervisor, a partner in the corporate practice. Before my seat, I expected most of my work to come from my supervisor. However, since starting, while my supervisor does give me work, I have also been encouraged to approach other members of the team and as a result have had exposure to a broad spectrum of corporate work (public and private M&A, capital markets, funds and outsourcing) and various types of corporate deals such as corporate real estate and corporate insurance. Sitting with my supervisor has also helped me build my confidence to discuss legal issues and how best to approach them with senior lawyers. The relatively smaller trainee intake has also been beneficial as this means more exposure to quality legal work. As my seat has progressed, I have been given more responsibility on deals I am working on.

The firm is committed to professional development and organises many training sessions by associates and partners for its trainees. Mayer Brown also offers secondment opportunities during your training contract either to international locations, such as New York and Hong Kong, or to established clients of the firm, which further enhances one’s training and professional network.

While at Mayer Brown I have participated in some of the many pro bono initiatives the firm offers including volunteering at the Islington Law Centre and using my legal research skills to help draft reports for a recent pro bono research project. The firm also offers other activities including joining and playing with various sports teams, joining the Christmas choir and many charity events, such as the recent charity football tournament and an upcoming comedy night.

I am glad that I am training at Mayer Brown as it provides a supportive and collaborative environment in which to do challenging, rewarding and quality legal work alongside lawyers who are instrumental in their respective fields. I would strongly recommend considering Mayer Brown if you want to work at a truly global law firm that is committed to investing in your professional development as a lawyer.

About the firm

Address:201 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 3AF

Telephone: 020 3130 8621

Twitter: @mayerbrownfutures

Senior partner : Sean Connolly

Other offices: Bangkok, Beijing, Brussels, Charlotte, Chicago, Dubai, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, New York, Palo Alto, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Palo, Shanghai, Singapore and Washington. 

Who we are: Mayer Brown was one of the first law firms to develop a global platform in recognition of the fact that many of its clients increasingly needed integrated, cross border legal advice. The firm is now one of the world’s leading global law firms with offices in major cities across the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. In Brazil, the firm has an association with Tauil & Chequer Avogados. Through the association, the extensive international expertise of its lawyers and its presence in the leading financial centres around the world, Mayer Brown provides high quality legal advice and client-focused solutions to support many of the world’s leading businesses.

What we do: Our lawyers practise in a wide range of areas, including corporate, finance, real estate, construction, litigation and dispute resolution, employment, pensions, antitrust and competition, insurance and reinsurance, tax, financial services regulatory and intellectual property.

What we are looking for: We are looking for candidates who not only have a consistently strong academic record, including a minimum of a 2(1) degree or equivalent and AAB at A Level or equivalent in any discipline, but who also have a wide range of interests and achievements outside their academic career.

What you'll do:Trainees can tailor their training contract from a range of different seats, including our main practice areas, and client and international secondments. Trainees will be given significant opportunities to assist on matters that may be multidisciplinary, cross-border and high-profile in nature.

Perks: Private healthcare scheme, subsidised gym membership, 25 days’ holiday.

Sponsorship:The firm will cover the cost of the GDL and LPC and provide a maintenance grant of £7,000 in London and £6,500 elsewhere. The firm asks all LPC students to complete the LPC at BPP law school in London.


Facts and figures

Trainee places available for 2019: 15

Applications received pa: 1,500+ 


First year: £42,000

Second year: £47,000

Newly qualified: £71,500

Total partners: 87

Other fee-earners:130

Total trainees:30

 Application process

Apply to:Danielle White

How: Online via our graduate recruitment website.

When to Apply:By 31 July 2017 for 2019 contracts.