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London Recruitment Hero

London Legal Recruitment

A career with Vinson & Elkins in our London office represents an outstanding opportunity to fulfill your professional ambitions.

Over 45 years ago, Vinson & Elkins was one of the first U.S. firms to establish an office in London, and the continuing growth of our London office is a vital part of V&E's overall international strategy. Our long significant experience in London and our Texas roots give us a unique perspective and a rich and friendly culture, which those who have joined us find refreshingly different. 

Our strategy for growth in London is simple, yet effective: to build steadily on our strengths and to focus on the long term. We believe that by hiring the best lawyers and giving them every opportunity to develop their practice in a supportive environment, they will flourish, and so will our firm.

  • Ka-Mun Fu – Vacation Placement Student 2013, Trainee 2015-2017, London M&A Associate

    "My vacation scheme at Vinson & Elkins was an excellent opportunity to experience life as a trainee with the firm. I was introduced to everyone and, after a tour around the office, I very quickly set about assisting one of the lawyers in the litigation department on one of their cases. I was given a wide range of tasks to do, ranging from legal research and sitting in on conference calls and client meetings to amending and proofreading a sale and purchase agreement and a master licence agreement. It was great to be able to contribute towards genuine client cases and transactions (rather than made-up tasks), and everyone in the office made me feel like an actual member of the team.

    I am now in my second seat on secondment in the Houston office and since I started as a trainee, I have been able to work on a wide range of different matters from different departments and also follow projects from start to finish. I enjoyed working on the physical signing and closing of a transaction concerning the acquisition of a golf course which involved due diligence and drafting of ancillary documents such as board minutes and resolutions. I have also worked on commercial litigation cases relating to the breach of a construction contract and I had the opportunity to work on an international arbitration and attended the hearing in New York.

    My experience as a vacation placement student and as a first year trainee at Vinson & Elkins has been challenging yet rewarding, and I look forward to that continuing."

    Ka-Mun Fu – Vacation Placement Student 2013, Trainee 2015-2017, London M&A Associate
  • London Office Trainees

    Vinson & Elkins currently offers between five and six training contracts commencing in September each year. These are not run on a rigid seat system, but instead a trainee will gain wide experience in many different areas simultaneously, working with a wide variety of associates and partners from across the firm. 

    Whilst being based in London, trainees often take secondments in our other offices (particularly our offices in the Middle East and Houston), and travel is a likely part of any training contract with us. Trainees will have the support of an associate mentor to provide an extra, and hands-on port of call for support and assistance. 

    Vinson & Elkins looks to recruit from the best candidates, and we believe our training contracts reflect that — both in quality of training and work as well as in the highly competitive salary and benefits.

    • £50,000 for first-year trainees
    • £55,000 for second year trainees
    • £143,000 newly qualified salary
    • We also pay LPC and GDL course fees and offer a discretionary stipend (of up to £8,000) to assist with the LPC and GDL year.

    Don’t just take our word on it, however. Chambers and Partners recently profiled the quality of V&E's London trainee programme, and we have won awards for the quality of our training contract from LawCareers.Net.

    Applications for training contracts should be made by way of our online application form. Please note that the application process for a Vacation Scheme in 2018 has now finished. The application process for a direct training contract in respect of a 2020 training contract is open until 31 July 2018. We will aim to make awards of training contracts for 2020 by 30 September 2018. Please note that while we do give first preference to our vacation placements students, we do also accept applications from those who have not undergone a placement.

    For further information about the training programme and V&E as a whole, please have a look at our London Trainee Recruitment Brochure.

    Vacation Placements and Open Day

    We have completed our recruitment of trainees for 2018 and 2019. If you are interested in applying for a vacation placement commencing in 2019, you should apply via our website from 1 November 2018 up until 31 January 2019. Vacation placements are limited. We view vacation placements as an invaluable tool for allowing both you and us to assess each other, and accordingly, when considering training contract applications, we give first preference to those who have completed a placement with us. During the course of the one week you spend in Vinson & Elkins’ London office, you will get full exposure to the different areas of practice the office offers.

    When considering vacation placement applications, we give preference to candidates who would be ready to commence a training contract two years after that placement. In assessing candidates for both vacation placements and training contracts, we look for evidence of academic ability of at least a 2:1 standard at University, as well as a genuine commitment to the law and a real interest in our core practice areas. If you are in the first year of a law degree or the penultimate year of a non-law degree, and would like to learn more about the firm, you may be interested in attending our Open Day which will be held on 20 March 2019. The Open Day is dedicated to candidates at this earlier stage. Applications can be made any time up until 8 February 2019, by emailing us at graduaterecruitment@velaw.com with your name, contact details, A-level results, university and the stage of education which you are at. Places will be allocated after the closing date. For further information, please see our Open Day flyer

  • Emilie Stewart, London Finance Senior Associate

    "A training contract at Vinson & Elkins will certainly be diverse, challenging, and exciting. I started my two-year training contract sitting with a disputes partner and, on day one, I was thrown into a case we had recently been instructed on and which I continued to work on until my last seat. The non-rotational seat system gave me the opportunity to work on all aspects of this case from pleadings to the arbitration, which provided an opportunity to experience the aspects of work you will do as an associate in each department. Training at Vinson & Elkins is all about getting involved from the start of a matter right until the end, and trainees are encouraged to mold their training to individual interests.

    One of the main reasons I came to Vinson & Elkins was the ability to work on large international transactions while being in a smaller and friendlier office. International opportunities are definitely available for trainees at Vinson & Elkins, and I have been lucky enough to travel to Houston, Dublin, Luxembourg, Frankfurt and Paris on transactions. I also did one of my seats as a trainee sitting in the Hong Kong office. It is very rare to work on a deal with just one jurisdiction involved; almost all our work is international which makes things more exciting and gives trainees a view of larger scale, more challenging transactions."

    Emilie Stewart, London Finance Senior Associate