A bright start to a career in Australia

Working at Clifford Chance in Australia offers constant exposure to top-tier domestic work along with multi-jurisdictional matters from around Asia Pacific and our global network – opportunities that few firms in Australia can provide. 

Our Australian practice was formed to help clients make the most of domestic and regional opportunities; Australia has a mature economy, substantial natural resources and long-standing business links with Asia Pacific markets. 

Our local team of more than 160 people are leaders in their fields. They bring decades of experience, expertise and specialist knowledge to businesses looking to expand or defend their interests in Australia and around the world. Clifford Chance Australia offers the resources, reputation, and market leading work for a bright career in law. We're seeking the brightest Graduates to join our journey and thrive in our high-performing, collegiate teams.

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Vacation Clerkship

We run vacations clerkships in both of our offices over the summer. This is the primary way of gaining a place on our coveted graduate program. 

Our clerkship program is designed to provide you with a real insight to life at Clifford Chance Australia. Throughout the program, you will work alongside all levels of lawyers, including partners, while you assist with real-time matters and are given space to demonstrate your skills. You will have two seat rotations, allowing you to experience different aspects of our key practice areas. 

But that is not all, a key aspect of our Clerkship is the trips we offer to enable candidates to witness our seamless global network first-hand. For candidates in Sydney, you can expect a business visit to locations such as Singapore or Hong Kong. In Perth, we give candidates the opportunity to visit Sydney and explore the depth of our Australian offering. The scheme will also host sessions from professionals across the firm to give you a real insight into how our firm works – from Finance to our Legal Technology teams. As well as showing you the things that matter to us, such as introductions and opportunities to be involved in our affinity groups ARCUS, Accelerate and REACH. 

Graduate Program

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As a Clifford Chance graduate, you become a valued team member from day one. You will be close to the action, with an active role in client relationships and business development early on. You will enjoy the challenge of working on a wide variety of international, market-leading and landmark transactions, often collaborating with colleagues from other offices and practice areas. 

You will undertake four rotations that will include a combination of seats in our practice areas of Corporate, Global Financial Markets, and Litigation & Dispute Resolution. 

Crucially, one of your seats will be an international secondment, allowing you to gain real insight into how our cross-border collaboration contributes to our success and experience how other jurisdictions operate. Allowing Graduates to develop their personal network internationally is a key aspect of our firm's success and continued dedication to delivering the best work to our clients. Recent secondment destinations include Singapore, Dubai, London, Tokyo and Hong Kong. 

We operate Graduate Programs in both of our Australian offices. On average, we introduce cohorts of 4 Graduates in Perth and 6-8 Graduates in Sydney annually. 

Graduate Program benefits 

  • Competitive Salary 
  • 20 days leave (with a bonus top up of 5 days annually) 
  • Medical and Extras insurance schemes 
  • Life assurance schemes 
  • Forward-thinking parental leave policy 
  • Clearly defined professional development program 
  • Opportunity to work on cutting-edge projects in a world leading organisation

Our people

Nikhil Banerjee

Law Graduate, Sydney 

For practitioners, promoting responsible business can have a profound impact within the community. For example, solicitors can lead initiatives that improve access to briefs for female barristers. Finance lawyers can help energy clients transition into clean energy and become more sustainable. 

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Meg Green

Law Graduate, Perth  

I really enjoyed my clerkship as I felt I got to really experience the firm and what it would be like to work there. Everyone was very honest and open about their experiences and happy to share their time to speak with me about any questions I had.

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Damian Bachor

Law Graduate, Sydney 

I always wanted to develop my legal career internationally, and what was particularly attractive about Clifford Chance's graduate program was that graduates are offered a 6-month international secondment to one of the 36 offices in its global network.

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Our recruitment process

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You can expect the following recruitment stages when applying for a Graduate role with us in Australia: 

  • Online written application. 
  • First round interview with HR and a Lawyer (CV Blind).
  • A written case study followed by a second round interview with a Partner, Lawyer and HR. 
  • Offer of Clerkship /Graduate Program or feedback from the process. 

To be successful, you will need to demonstrate your potential to become a first-class professional, and your willingness to take advantage of the many opportunities that you encounter. You must exhibit ambition, drive and commitment and the desire to build relationships and deliver outstanding service. We're also looking for business awareness, a keen commercial insight, a strong ability to lead and manage and to clearly articulate your ideas. 

Our candidates should demonstrate intellectual curiosity, common sense, and the capacity to quickly assimilate detailed information. When applying, consider how you can best demonstrate these qualities and provide examples from your education, work or extra-curricular activities. 

If you require reasonable adjustments to be made, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Important dates

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Summer Clerkship Dates 
27 November 2023 – 25 January 2024

Summer Clerkship: 8 - 12
Summer Clerks are automatically considered for March 2025 Graduate Program 

Graduate Program March 2025: 6 - 10 

Recruitment deadlines
Applications open: 5 June, 2023
Applications close: 2 July, 2023

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Summer Clerkship Dates

27 November 2023 – 21 December 2023 


Summer Clerkship: 4 - 6 

Summer Clerks are automatically considered for March 2025 Graduate Program 

Graduate Program March 2025: 2 - 4 

Recruitment deadlines 

Applications open: 26 June, 2023

Applications close: 30 July, 2023

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