Bird & Bird brings training contract deadline forward

Bird & Bird has brought its training contract applications deadline forward by two months as competition to become a trainee solicitor continues to intensify.

Bird & Bird has brought its training contract applications deadline forward by two months as competition to become a trainee solicitor continues to intensify.

The law firm has been forced to bring its cut-off date forward to 29 May after it announced a “substantially increased” number of applications from would-be lawyers vying for a coveted training contract.

A spokesperson for the firm said: “Bird & Bird has decided that the deadline date for applications this year will be brought forward to 29th May. We have received a substantially increased number of applications this year and have made this decision in order to process them efficiently and fairly.”

Meanwhile, the firm is not planning to defer the start dates of those candidates who already hold firm training contract offers. It also claimed that its summer vacation schemes will go ahead as normal.

The news comes after Slaughter and May closed its training contract applications last month to non-law students earlier than usual after receiving a significantly higher volume of applications (see story).

Meanwhile, Eversheds and Field Fisher Waterhouse have  both cancelled all their summer vacation schemes and closed their graduate recruitment programme until 2010 after asking their trainees to defer their start dates.

Similarly, Shoosmiths is also not accepting any applications for training contracts starting in September 2011 though it has confirmed that it is not planning to make any changes to its summer vacation scheme.

Under Solicitors Regulation Authority rules law firms are not permitted to offer penultimate year law students training contracts until 1 September.