Covid-19 Vacation Scheme Round-Up

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to unfold, the impact on solicitor legal training has started to take shape. A growing number of firms are postponing their vacation schemes, open days and other work experience opportunities. For example, White & Case have confirmed that its spring vacation scheme, scheduled to run from the 23rd of March to the 3rd April, has been postponed until a later date to be determined. Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP have postponed its April workshops, but are working under the assumption that its summer vacation schemes will proceed, as is Irwin Mitchell, which is monitoring its upcoming legal work placement scheme due to take place on June 15.

In a statement from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, the firm lays out its reaction to the crisis saying that it will postpone its spring vacation scheme, which was due to run from the 14-24th of April, until June. It has also confirmed that it will run three schemes of two weeks each in the summer, and that all other work experience opportunities – first year workshops and introduction to law workshops – will be postponed until later in the summer.

The firm also provide clarity to students unable to attend the delayed vacation schemes for reason of its amended schedule. For these students, it has made arrangements to offer direct training contract interviews, although, it adds that, the threshold for training contract offers via this route will be high and limited.

At the Lex 100 we are continuing to monitor this situation and provide updated information about the pandemic’s impact on legal training. As the situation extends into the coming months, more firms will be likely to take similar action and make changes to their spring and summer programs. As and when that happens we will continue to update you.

Please get involved by sharing with us your experiences regarding postponement or cancellation of work experience, vacation schemes or the longer term effect on solicitor training generally, whether you are a prospective trainee or law firm. Feel free to get in touch by email to