Want to take a closer look at each of these companies? Read one of these interviews with Magic Circle employees! But what sets them apart from other law firms? What is the salary and benefits of working for a Magic Circle company? And how do you get a foot in the door of one of these five companies? We have already defined Magic Circle companies according to their size. This is also reflected in the experience of articling students: newcomers often work in large teams with at least three qualified lawyers and often more. A hierarchy is clearly in place – these companies are “not the kind of place where you would walk into a partner`s office and start talking about the weather”. The workplace is demanding and can be hard to escape: like other law firms in the city, magic circle outfits can have “sleeping stalls” for the nights. Facilities such as a gym, restaurant, café, bar, hair salon, dentist, and dry cleaning can make bosses feel like bosses don`t want you to leave the office too much. One interviewee told us that the highlight of a particularly busy month was the opportunity to visit their local Tesco. If you`re an aspiring lawyer, you`ve certainly heard of Magic Circle law firms. National law firms would also struggle to outperform MC firms if placed side by side. However, their work is more focused on UK-based clients and, in some practice areas, these firms may be better able to serve them than MC firms. “It was difficult,” said Brian Davis, legal recruiter for Major, Lindsey & Africa, referring to efforts by British companies to compete in the US. “By most standards, they`re not that profitable.” You don`t need to go to America to work for this type of business. In fact, there are more and more US-based law firms in the UK.
With their prestigious reputation, American companies tend to offer apprentices higher wages in line with the New York market. They also offer more international responsibilities and opportunities. U.S. companies are also in the market for the same caliber of graduates, enticing them with higher salaries. The differences aren`t so obvious at the trainee level: first-year Magic Circle students can expect to earn around £43,000, while colleagues at the highest-paid US companies can get between £45,000 (Paul Hastings) and £50,000 (at Davis Polk). After qualification, the gap really starts to widen: while companies in the magic circle have recently increased NQ`s wages in response to some US companies increasing their salaries to (more) £100,000, the salary packages of the latter still far exceed those of the former. Among the companies in the magic circle, Slaughter and May gives the lowest salary in the NQ (£71,500), while Freshfields dominates the sleeping place with £85,000. Compare that to the highest-paid American companies: Paul Hastings distributes £110.00, Davis Polk £112,500 and Kirkland & Ellis $180,000. Even Akin Gump, who starts his apprentices with the same salary as the magic circle, significantly increases the Dosh post-qualification to pay his NQ £112,500.
There are other firms lagging in these top rankings, and many more firms topping other London rankings, but few can compete with the extent of practice strengths that the magic circle can offer. This is the key to their identity. As an illustration, here are the first two rankings for three other practice areas, a controversial, a business support and a skilled trade. Lawyers` compensation has been a stumbling block for UK-based companies looking to garner top talent in the US. In this detailed guide, you`ll learn all about magic circle law firms, their differences, salaries, and recruitment practices. Profit gaps limit what they can do to consistently and successfully compete with the nation`s leading companies for talent. It would be difficult to compare MC firms with high street law firms. That`s because they have a very diverse clientele. The latter focuses primarily on non-calibre ™ clients and service areas that are not typically associated with MC, such as family, wills and estates. Why does the magic circle receive such a rhapsodic return from the market? When every second intern we interview mentions “prestige”, what do they mean? The answer lies in the gravity of the work, which plays a central role in the UK economy and the global economy.
And above all, these companies do this caliber very well. As one Magic Circle intern put it, “I`ve worked on groundbreaking things that are part of economic history.” Global elite firms include Allen & Overy, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Clifford Chance, Davis Polk & Wardwell, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Herbert Smith Freehills, Kirkland & Ellis, Latham & Watkins, Linklaters, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Sullivan & Cromwell and Weil, Gotshal & Manges. When a big deal is announced in the mainstream press, you can be pretty sure that a magic circle company will have to advise at least one of the parties. If a big bank is involved, it`s almost a dead certificate. Silver Circle law firms generate high revenues that are higher than most domestic and international U.S. law firms. The level of their work does not come close to MC. However, money circle companies tend to have more business areas and don`t just focus on transaction areas. Magic Circle companies are pioneers in franchising English law and create franchises in non-English speaking countries.
Large companies not included include Herbert Smith Freehills, Hogan Lovells, Norton Rose Fulbright and Stephenson Harwood, which are less profitable. [ref. needed] At the time the term was coined, Herbert Smith`s corporate practice (as it was called before the merger) focused on privatization work that had dried up. For this reason, it was probably not included in the original Magic Circle.  Salaries are reasonable, but depend on location. A great advantage of domestic companies is that employees often enjoy a better work-life balance than their counterparts in urban companies. Whether you`re a paralegal or a lawyer, you`ve probably heard of Magic Circle companies. If you`re an aspiring lawyer, you`ve certainly heard of Magic Circle law firms. The migration of blue-chip British companies to the US market has not been rapid or bloodless, but has taken place over decades since the 1970s. Magic Circle Law Firms are a group of the most elite law firms headquartered in London. They perform the most prestigious and innovative transactional legal work, which is multi-jurisdictional in nature.
The term “magic circle” itself appeared in the 1990s and was widely coined by journalists covering legal markets. At one point, Herbert Smith Freehills, Norton Rose Fulbright and Stephenson Harwood were among them, forming the “Club of Nine”. UK law firms, including Magic Circle law firms, have experienced increased competition from US law firms both domestically (US law firms with a presence in the UK) and internationally.    If you want to work for one of the companies, you should probably know how to choose the right one for you. As with any business, you should start by thinking about the factors that are most important to you. Aspiring lawyers should focus on several things when considering a job: these five firms are far from the largest in the UK or the world, and many other London firms are large, corporate and very international (Hogan Lovells and Norton Rose Fulbright come to mind). So why do legal commentators (including us) single out this group of five? Read on to find out. If you work on agreements that define business and want to be at the forefront of the business world, then MC firms are for you. The quality of work you will be exposed to is unmatched compared to other UK companies. Not only will they practice law, but they will also have the most direct influence on the development of the world economy. If you are motivated by the desire to make an economic difference, then MC is the place for you.
U.S. law firms strive to compete with MC in their notorious transactional work. However, most of them possess the skills, but clients remain loyal to a proven track record of MC`s legal work. According to Henry Raine, a former investment banker and corporate partner at Herbert Smith Freehills, the term “magic circle” was coined by a law journal and referred to companies that were very strong in corporate or international work. Magic Circle members are extremely prestigious and consistently rank among the highest earnings per partner and income per lawyer in the UK.