The lowdown (in their own words...)
If the firm were a fictional character it would be...
Founded in 1775, central London law firm Pemberton Greenish has a history spanning over two centuries. The firm specialises in real estate and has a high-quality international private wealth practice. Clients include private individuals, entrepreneurial and family businesses and charitable foundations.
The star performers
Property litigation; Residential property
The property litigation department is renowned for its work on landlord and tenant litigation, lease variations, restrictive covenants and rent reviews, and has expertise on trespassers and squatters, nuisance and negligence claims and insolvency. Additional strengths include service charge disputes and easements. The residential property team’s work includes enfranchisement, conveyancing issues and lease extensions. The firm is particularly active in sales and purchases within the prime Central London property market, namely for high-net-worth clients from overseas making purchases.
Clients include real estate businesses, domestic and international private individuals, entrepreneurial and family businesses and charitable foundations and trusts. Notably, the firm has developed the largest client base of major London estates.
Pemberton Greenish’s expertise in ‘all aspects of property law’ was consistently applauded throughout this year’s feedback. The single-site, London-based firm also boasts ‘capabilities in private wealth and corporate matters’, which aligned with the current cohort’s interests. ‘You get to know almost everyone’ thanks to the ‘good size’ and this in turn leads to ‘better supervision’ and ‘more client contact’ than at some larger London firms. Elaborating, respondents explained that ‘the level of exposure is excellent as there is only one trainee per department’. The ‘friendliness and inclusive attitude’ of Pemberton Greenish motivated trainees, several of whom cited experiences such as ‘being trusted to attend and run client meetings alone’ and ‘flying to Jersey alone for a signing meeting with a client’ as their best moments. Conversely, ‘forgetting to file some documents at court’ had made a negative lasting impression on one recruit who vowed to ‘never make that mistake again’. A ‘lack of notice as to which seat we are rotating to next’ was also frustrating. On the upside, although CSR opportunities have been limited to date, we hear that ‘the firm is making a concerted effort to increase these activities’. A less entertaining aspect of working for a smaller firm is that recruits are occasionally required to ‘serve canapes and drinks at client events’ and that the workload can be ‘sporadic’. But there is no doubt that the firm takes its commitment to training seriously. If a firm with an ‘excellent reputation to provide an excellent training contract with excellent quality work’ sounds like the right fit for you, consider Pemberton Greenish.
A day in the life of...
Freddie Hunter first-year trainee, Pemberton Greenish LLP
Departments to date: Private wealth and corporate
Degree:International Relations (MA) 2(1)
9.30am: After a 30-minute walk, I arrive at the office, breakfast in hand. I make a coffee, read my emails and review my calendar, prioritising my work for the day.
10.00am: My team are currently in the process of selling the assets of an internet business and I have been asked to draft certain documents ready for signing. Having spoken to my supervisor, I spend the morning drafting the relevant documents. Attention to detail and a good understanding of the material is important so I take time ensuring everything is correct before sending the drafts for review.
12.00pm: I have a meeting with another trainee in the City to go through a document disclosure list. This involves a free lunch and endless coffee which is always a bonus. One of the best aspects of life as a trainee at Pemberton Greenish is the fact that you are rarely at your desk for the entire day. From day one you are encouraged to meet clients and other lawyers, whether that be at the office or throughout London.
1.30pm: I arrive back at the office and go about organising the office summer drinks. All trainees are part of the Charity and Social Committee which organises events throughout the year. Having had a successful Christmas party followed by a popular wine and cheese evening, the committee is determined to maintain its track record. I settle on a local bar and send out a firm-wide invite. These events offer a great opportunity to socialise with everyone in the firm, particularly those in different departments.
2.15pm: I receive feedback on my drafting and make the necessary amendments in anticipation of a conference call with all of the parties later in the afternoon.
2.00pm: I have a meeting with a partner from our private wealth department. He explains that I will be dealing with the property aspects of an estate planning matter on which he is currently advising, and afterwards I draft a transfer deed and declaration of trust. He sends them on to the client for signature.
3.00pm: We have recently been instructed on a matter regarding international education. A partner in my team asks me to conduct some research and compile a memo of my findings. The ability to analyse a vast amount of information and condense it into an effective summary is an important skill for any trainee to develop. Bearing in mind the upcoming meeting, I ask the partner if I can have it on her desk the following day. A morning review of the previous day’s work is not to be underestimated.
4.30pm: I attend the conference call with a partner and an associate from my team. We run through all of the tasks that need to be completed before signing, including negotiating the terms of the asset sale agreement. After the call I draft an attendance note. Much has been discussed and it is important to note everything so that nothing is overlooked.
6.15pm: I leave the office in time for my weekly Monday night tag rugby game. The hours are normally very reasonable although sometimes it is necessary to stay later to ensure work is completed on time.
About the firm
Address:45 Cadogan Gardens, London, SW3 2AQ
Telephone: 020 7591 3333
Fax:020 7591 3300
Senior partner: Kerry Glanville
Managing partner: Simon Slater
Who we are: We are a central London law firm with over 200 years’ experience specialising in property, private wealth and SME sectors.
What we do: Real estate, private wealth and corporate for both domestic and international private individuals, real estate and entrepreneurial businesses and charitable foundations and trusts.
What we are looking for: Candidates interested in the firm’s practice areas who are bright and able to think commercially and practically; a team player who will actively contribute to the firm’s social and charitable activities.
What you'll do:Trainees will rotate through 5 seats in all sectors and handle ‘real work’ with early responsibility and will receive legal and skill-based training, on-going support and feedback.
Perks: 25 days’ holiday, pension scheme, season ticket loan.
Sponsorship:Details upon application.
Facts and figures
Total partners: 15
Other fee-earners: 21
Total trainees: 4
Trainee places available for 2021: 2
First year: £32,750 (September 2018)
Second year: £33,750
How: Online only.
When to apply:By 28 June 2019 for 2021 contracts.