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Application Information

To be considered for a vacation scheme place or to apply directly for a training contract, please complete our online application form.

Key Dates - Summer Vacation Scheme Applicants

  • October 4, 2019: Process opens for 2020 summer vacation schemes
  • January 17, 2020: Application deadline
  • February 2020: Assessment day (exact dates to be confirmed nearer the time)
  • Summer Scheme One: June 15-26, 2020
  • Summer Scheme Two: June 29-July 10, 2020       

Successful applicants will be invited to an assessment day, involving an interview with two partners and a group activity. Candidates will be invited to an informal lunch during which they can meet with other Covington lawyers.

Please note that we recruit trainees predominantly from our vacation schemes. We therefore strongly advise any candidates who are interested in the training contract to submit an application for a vacation scheme in the first instance.

Key Dates - Winter Vacation Scheme Applicants

  • October 4, 2019: Process opens for 2019 winter vacation schemes
  • November 12, 2019: Application deadline
  • November 2019: Assessment day (exact dates to be confirmed nearer the time)    
  • Winter Scheme: December 16-20, 2019 

Successful applicants will be invited to an assessment day, involving an interview with two partners and a group activity. Candidates will be invited to an informal lunch during which they can meet with other Covington lawyers.

Please note that we recruit trainees predominantly from our vacation schemes intake. We therefore strongly advise any candidates who are interested in the training contract to submit an application for a vacation scheme in the first instance.

Key Dates - Training Contract Applicants

  • October 4, 2019: Process opens for the September 2022 intake
  • July 10, 2020: Application deadline
  • Late July 2020: First round interviews (exact dates to be confirmed nearer the time)
  • Early August 2020: Second round interviews (exact dates to be confirmed nearer the time)

The interview process has two rounds. The first round interview involves a single 45 minute interview with two partners, a written task, presentation/discussion exercise, and a panel interview. Candidates will also be invited to attend an informal lunch during which they can meet with other Covington lawyers.

Law Fairs and Events

Please see below for details of the law fairs we will be attending in 2019. Please check this page regularly for any upcoming events the firm will be attending or hosting over the next few months. Our events offer you the opportunity to find out more about us and meet some of our trainees, associates and partners in a more informal setting. For further information on any of our future events, please direct your enquiries to graduate@cov.com.

  • October 7, 2019 - Technology, Engineering & Data Fair
  • October 10, 2019 - University of Bristol
  • October 14, 2019 - KCL Careers Café 
  • October 21, 2019 - Queen Mary University
  • October 22, 2019 - University of Warwick
  • October 22, 2019 - London School of Economics  
  • October 23, 2019 - Kings College, London
  • October 24, 2019 - University of Cambridge
  • October 28, 2019 - Imperial College (Life Sciences Fair) 
  • October 29, 2019 - University College London   
  • November 9, 2019 - University of Oxford   
  • November 20, 2019 - University of Exeter
  • November 20, 2019 - University of Durham   

Compensation and Benefits

A brief summary of the salary and benefits currently available is outlined below:

  • Successful training contract applicants will receive payment of tuition and examination fees for both the GDL (for non-law graduates) and the LPC. We do not pay fees retrospectively for completed courses.
  • Successful training contract applicants will also receive a maintenance grant of £8,000 for their GDL year (if applicable) and their LPC year. We do not pay grants retrospectively for completed courses and may pro-rate grants for students who are part way through a course of study or who have partial exemptions.
  • We pay a trainee salary of £48,000 per annum for the first year and £53,000 per annum for the second year. Newly qualified solicitors are currently paid £120,000 per annum.
  • Trainees have access to a full benefits package including: pension scheme, health insurance, life assurance, independent financial advice, 25 days’ holiday per year, an employee assistance programme, child care vouchers, a dental plan, emergency care cover and interest-free season ticket loans.
  • There is an active social calendar which includes regular office events and sports activities. Trainees also have their own social budget to organize trainee-specific events.

Please note that the salary and benefits offered can change from time-to-time and are subject to the then applicable rates of tax and national insurance.

Please note that upcoming trainees are expected to pass all modules of the GDL (where applicable) and the LPC on the first attempt and before they start at the firm. We also require sponsored students to maintain a satisfactory attendance rate during each course.

Should you have any questions that are not answered here, please feel free to contact our Graduate Recruitment Team.

I have BBB at A-level; can I still apply for a vacation scheme or training contract at Covington & Burling LLP?

We will only accept applications from candidates who meet our minimum academic requirements (ABB/128 UCAS points or equivalent and a minimum 2.1, expected or obtained, in their first undergraduate degree). If you have extenuating circumstances which means you do not meet this requirement, you may still apply.

I did not study in the UK; how do I complete the application form?

Please include all equivalent qualifications (e.g., GCSEs, A-levels and undergraduate degree) in the relevant section of the application form, providing as much detail as possible as to how the qualifications and grades compare.

Who is eligible to apply for a place on one of your vacation schemes?

Our vacation schemes are open to candidates from any degree discipline. Law students can apply in their penultimate year (and above), whilst students from all other disciplines can apply in their final year of study (and beyond). They are also open to GDL and LPC students, as well as candidates who are further down their career path.

Candidates studying for the two-year senior status LLB can apply in their first year, however they must provide a detailed breakdown of all modules from their previous undergraduate degree (which must meet our minimum academic requirements).

Do I need to complete a legal work experience placement or vacation scheme before applying for a training contract?

No, you do not need to have completed legal work experience or a vacation scheme before applying to Covington, as long as you can demonstrate the qualities we are looking for in our trainees. These qualities and skills can be displayed in a variety of ways, not just by completing legal work experience. However, vacation schemes offer an excellent insight into a firm, as well as enabling candidates to determine whether or not a career in law is right for them. We would therefore encourage all candidates to complete some form of legal work experience ahead of applying for a training contract to ensure they fully understand the career path they have chosen.

Who do I address the covering letter to in my application form?

Please address the covering letter to ‘The Graduate Recruitment Team.’

Do you review applications on a rolling basis?

We review all applications once the application deadline for the position has passed (currently 17 January for summer schemes, 12 November for winter schemes, and 10 July for training contracts). However, we recommend that candidates apply well within the application period.

When can I expect to hear the outcome of my application?

You will receive an instant acknowledgement of receipt of your application upon submission. We aim to review all applications within three weeks after the deadline and therefore candidates can expect to hear from us again in early February (for vacation scheme applications) and mid-July (for training contract applications).

Can I receive feedback on my application if I am unsuccessful?

Due to the large number of applications we receive, we are only able to provide detailed feedback to candidates who have attended an interview or an assessment day. We recommend that unsuccessful candidates revisit our graduate recruitment website where we outline the qualities we look for in our trainees.

I attended an interview for a vacation scheme last year but was unsuccessful. Can I apply again?

Candidates who have previously applied (and who meet our minimum academic requirements), including those who have previously attended an interview, can reapply the following year. However, candidates must be able to demonstrate how their application has significantly developed since they last applied to the firm. Realistically, if you have not been successful in a previous year, it is unlikely that a repeat application will succeed, unless there have been significant changes in the application.

I attended an interview for a training contract last year but was unsuccessful. Can I apply again?

Candidates who have previously been interviewed for a training contract and were unsuccessful are unlikely to be successful in a later application, unless they can effectively demonstrate how they have developed since their last application.

Recruiting Contact

Claire Astbury
Legal Recruiting and Professional Development Manager
+44 20 7067 2099
castbury@cov.com

Covington & Burling LLP is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in any aspect of employment, including hiring, salary, promotion, discipline, termination, and benefits, on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity or expression, age, marital status, sexual orientation, family responsibility, disability (including physical handicap), or any other improper criterion.

At Covington, we strive to maintain the highest standards of integrity to ensure the commercial success and reputation of our firm. One means by which we do this is through conducting routine background checks, which is a requirement of joining Covington. The standard pre-employment background checks we may conduct on prospective partners, lawyers, and employees include checks relating to public social media presence, criminal records, education and employment history. Additional checks may be undertaken appropriate to the requirements of the role. All background checks are conducted in accordance with applicable local laws.