Nabarro LLP

Nabarro LLP

Address: 125 London Wall,, London, EC2Y 5AL




Survey results


The lowdown (in their own words...)

Why did you choose this firm over any others? 
 '‘Friendly atmosphere’; ‘specialisms in my area of interest’; ‘the six-seat training contract’; ‘good-quality work without the Magic Circle hours’; ‘perceived friendly approach’; ‘fantastic vacation scheme’; ‘there is a good amount of trainee responsibility’; ‘it is one of the best firms in Sheffield’; ‘offered the opportunities of a large firm with the friendliness of a smaller firm’
Best thing about the firm? 
 '‘The free dinners after 7pm’; ‘workplace environment’; ‘seniors’ willingness to help you learn’; ‘the quality of work in some departments is super exciting’; ‘the quality and range of training available is outstanding’; ‘there is a nice atmosphere in the office’; ‘the responsibility you get given from your first day’; ‘desire to be an attractive place to work’
Worst thing about the firm? 
 '‘The lifts’; ‘lack of international opportunities’; ‘occasional lack of control over working hours’; ‘some lack of transparency over qualification process’; ‘it is still hard to see where the senior female role models are’; ‘getting expenses signed off by finance’; ‘many of the partners are still very old school’
Best moment? 
 '‘Completing a deal by myself’; ‘drafting my first lease’; ‘the first day in every seat that you start feeling competent’; ‘attending court hearings of matters in which I have been heavily involved’; ‘being sent on secondment to Brussels’; ‘receiving very positive feedback from a client early on following a piece of research’; ‘researching for a BBC interview’
Worst moment?
 '‘Being told off by the partner for not posting my timesheet’; ‘incorrectly executing and completing a £300m sale contract’; ‘having to cross reference hundreds of documents in a schedule’; ‘late nights in the office in the run up to Christmas’; ‘realising an email sounded less polite than I intended and having a fee-earner pick up on this’'

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

Mrs Patmore (Downton Abbey) – friendly and supportive, but pushes you when there’s work to be done

The Verdict

The firm

London-headquartered Nabarro remains a market-leader in real estate, and was nominated for both Real Estate Team of the Year and Competition Team of the Year at the Legal Business Awards 2016. The firm has overseas offices in Brussels, Dubai and Singapore, and also has an alliance with other leading European firms. Aside from property law, the firm is active across the corporate and commercial practice areas. 

The star performers

Banking and finance; Clinical negligence: defendant; Commercial litigation; Commercial property; Construction; Corporate and commercial; Corporate restructuring and insolvency; Employee share schemes; Employment: employers; Environment; Health and safety; Local government; Pensions dispute resolution; Pensions (non-contentious); Personal injury: defendant; Planning; Property litigation.

The deals

Advised Redefine International on its £490m acquisition of AEGON’s UK property fund; defended UK Coal in more than 70 unfair dismissal and disability discrimination claims; assisted Tarmac with the sale of its headquarters in Wolverhampton; successfully defended the State Bank of India in a race discrimination and whistleblowing claim brought by a former trader; advised the North York Moors National Park Authority on a planning agreement for a deep mine proposal.

The clients

BAE Systems; Biffa Waste Services; GE Capital; Henry Boot; Laing O’Rourke; Land Securities; Manchester Airport Group; Manchester City Council; Santander; Veolia Environmental.

The Verdict

Respondents praise Nabarro’s ‘six-seat training contract’ for offering a ‘real range of good-quality work’, plus the chance to gain such broad experience is also ‘very helpful for those who are unsure about which areas they are interested in’. The firm’s ‘fantastic vacation scheme’ also proved popular with current trainees, and merits a Lex 100 Winner award. Feedback also highlights the ‘brilliant training’ and how ‘all trainee supervisors seem to be great role models’. Highlight achievements include ‘attending a multi-million pound hearing in the international dispute resolution centre following months of preparation for the case’ and ‘being trusted to advise a client face-to-face in a meeting’. Trainees are disappointed about ‘the lack of international opportunities’ available, despite the ‘overseas offices and European alliance’, yet those who have been on international secondments speak of a ‘really enjoyable’ experience. The ‘lack of cohesion between the different offices’ can be a frustration, as ‘sometimes as a member of the Sheffield office the London office can feel like a different firm’. Still, it is appreciated that the ‘excellent support staff’ are ‘friendly and approachable’, and as one respondent comments, ‘the representatives that came to various law school events also really sold the firm’. Trainees are very pleased with the ‘great offices’, and cite the fantastically-stocked salad bar’ and ‘new fizzy-water tap’ as favourite features. To train at a firm that commands a ‘terrific reputation in the real estate market’ and engenders ‘a real sense of cohesiveness and support’, apply to Nabarro.

 A day in the life of...

George Mole first-year trainee, Nabarro LLP 
Departments to date:  Real estate, IP and IT
University:University of Birmingham 
Degree:Political science 2(1) 

9.00am:  I arrive on the 16th floor where I share an office with one of the partners, and make myself a cuppa on the way to my desk. Once I’m sat down, the first thing I do is review my to-do list from yesterday and make a new list for today. This is one of the key things I learnt from my time in real estate, where trainees may be working on over 25 active matters – the only way to stay on top of it is to be organised! 

9.15am:  Last weekend I took a group of 26 of my colleagues to Liverpool to play touch rugby in the Corporate Games 2016 (which I am still aching from!). So I take the opportunity to write a small article with a few pictures to be posted on the social page of our intranet site. The firm is very sociable and throughout the rest of the day I receive a few compliments for organising the event.

9:35am:  Time to start my billable work for the day and I’ve got some drafting to do which should take most of my morning. This involves drafting a letter to the third party to our client’s sponsorship agreement with a global leader in cosmetics. The letter will explain the key clauses and importance of the warranties included in the licence that they are being asked to sign, which will give our client the right to use their intellectual property.

11.10am  I get a call from my supervisor. He tells me he has been asked to update a number of sections in one of the main texts on IT law, International Computer and Internet Contracts and Law by Michele T Rennie. As his trainee, he asks me to help him. This is a massive undertaking that will give me work to do until the end of my seat, but I’m happy to get involved as it will give me a chance to gain greater insight into some very interesting and technical areas of law, such as computer software piracy and data licence agreements. I start on this research task straight away to get ahead of the curve.

12.45pm:  I get a call from one of my fellow trainees who asks if I can join him for lunch. When we get to the canteen, despite having made my own lunch today, there is a fresh sushi pop-up stand that is just too tempting...double lunch it is.

1.15pm  I return to my desk much fuller than when I left and my roommate invites me to attend three conference calls starting in 15 minutes with different legal counsel from Germany, Holland and Switzerland in relation to advertising standards in those countries. I take notes for all of the calls and am asked to summarise the advice for each jurisdiction into a file note which can be sent to the client.

3.30pm:  I head to a meeting room for the monthly fund-raising committee meeting. Here we discuss the upcoming events and delegate roles among us. Our next event is our annual Battle of the Bands at the 100 Club on Oxford Street, and I have volunteered to order the food and attempt to source a drum kit, guitar and bass amps, if possible.

4.00pm:  I check the emails I have received while in my meeting. There’s a couple of notifications that new IP and IT documents have been uploaded to the dataroom for one of the corporate deals I have been assisting on. I spend the next few hours reviewing these to highlight any areas of concern that I think should be highlighted to our client in the due diligence report.

6.55pm:  I diarise a couple of events for tomorrow then head down to the canteen for (free!) dinner; my choice tonight is pollock with new potatoes and vegetables.

7:20pm:  Having posted my time entries for the day, I log off and head to the pub with some friends to watch tonight’s football match.

About the firm

Address:125 London Wall,, London, EC2Y 5AL

Telephone: 020 7524 6000



Senior partner : Ciaran Carvalho

Managing partner : Andrew Inkester

Other offices: Manchester, Sheffield, Brussels, Dubai and Singapore. 

Who we are: Nabarro is an leading international law firm offering a broad range of legal services to major national and international clients in the public and private sectors. We deliver the highest quality, business-focused advice to clients, clearly and concisely, no matter how complex the situation.

What we do: The firm focuses on four key sectors: healthcare and life sciences, infrastructure, real estate and technology. Main areas of work include banking and finance, corporate, real estate, pensions and employment, funds and indirect real assets, IP/IT, dispute resolution, planning and environmental, construction and energy.

What we are looking for: You will be required to demonstrate strong academic achievement (a minimum 2(1) degree and AAB at A-level), commercial awareness, excellent interpersonal skills and teamwork, motivation and drive. Applications are welcomed from law and non-law students and we are committed to making the most of diverse skills, expertise and experience. Accordingly there is no typical Nabarro trainee and we aim to recruit from a wide range of universities. We offer training contracts in our London and Sheffield offices.

What you'll do:Trainees undertake six four-month seats to ensure maximum exposure to the firm’s core practice areas, as well as the opportunity to spend time in more specialist areas, or possibly on secondment.

Perks: Private medical insurance, pension, life assurance, 26 days’ holiday per year, season ticket loan, subsidised restaurant, GymFlex and occupational healthcare. Trainee salaries are reviewed annually.

Sponsorship:Full fees paid for the LPC and GDL plus a maintenance grant: LPC: £7,000 London, £6,000 regional; GDL: £6,000 London, £5,000 regional. We reimburse 50% of fees retrospectively if you have already completed the GDL or LPC.


Facts and figures

Trainee places available for 2019: 20

Applications received pa: 750 

Percentage interviewed: 40% (videos plus assessment centre) 


First year: London £38,000, Sheffield £26,000

Second year: London £42,000, Sheffield £29,000

Newly qualified: London £62,000, Sheffield £40,000

Total partners: 106

Other fee-earners:266

Total trainees:53

 Application process

Apply to:Mirrick Koh, graduate recruitment and trainee development manager.

How: Online application only –

When to Apply:Between 1 October 2016 and 3 January 2017 for 2019 training contracts.

 Vacation schemes

June and July 2017 (apply between 1 October 2016 and 3 January 2017).

1. An introduction to Nabarro

2. Summer Student perspective

3. Trainee perspective

4. NQ perspective