How to Get into Big Law Firm ?

Who are the big law firms? 

  • AZB & Partners
  • Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas
  • Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas
  • Khaitan & Co
  • JSA
  • Luthra & Luthra Law Offices
  • Trilegal

NLU students v/s others student ?

There are some NLUs, the top of them to be precise, which have a very huge advantage when it comes to getting a job at a big law firm. It doesn’t necessarily mean that other students do not, or cannot get a job at big law firms. Nonetheless, for these NLUs it is just a little easier option.

Mentioned below are the law schools with Day ‘0’ campus placement events that actually get attended by Big 7 law firms:

  1. NLSIU Bangalore
  2. NUJS Kolkata
  3. NALSAR Hyderabad
  4. NLU Jodhpur
  5. NLIU Bhopal
  6. GNLU Gandhinagar
  7. NLU Delhi

Often colleges like Jindal Global Law School, Symbiosis Pune, GLC Mumbai, etc. have been made sure to get a few top law firms to visit their campus and recruit. Going by the stats, the numbers are however, insignificant and such recruitment may not take place every year.

It is not that all students in the NLUs have a great chance to landing a job at a Big 7 law firm through campus placement. Usually only top 10-15% of the class have an opportunity. Rest get rejected at CV shortlisting stage. Top 10 rankers usually get multiple offers.

What are your advantages and disadvantages ?

You need to first figure out what are your advantages and disadvantages. Once you are aware of this, you can work on converting your disadvantages, and playing as for your strengths. However, doing this assessment honestly is critical. In the event that you lie to yourself about your disadvantages, or overestimate your advantages, or even underestimate your chances and give up prematurely – none of that is of any help. You shall need to believe that while doing this exercise you can overcome every disadvantage. Having done that, you can recognize them, have the courage to acknowledge, and admit them. Then you can work on them.

The quest of getting into the top law firms is by no means easy. It needs a long term strategy and steady execution of that strategy. Large number of people do not have the discipline to execute the strategy. Main concern is not about how much talent you have, but how much you develop yourself and how gritty you are in the face of setbacks.

Here are the usual advantages you need: 

1. Exemplary English – ability to speak, write and communicate

If you have realized that English is a problem for you, begin to work on it. If you do not have any problem with the language as such, still make an effort to wipe off common mistakes from your English writing.

In the event that you want a job in a law firm, you must be able to speak and write impeccable English, otherwise try to make a career in litigation which is much less demanding in this front.

2. Acquaintance to law firms, courts, arbitration institutes etc.

For a law firm to notice you, and value you, you need to intern for a long duration. You ought to become a known face in the office. This does not happen easily within a month long internship. The worst are of course two weeks internship. In the event that you somehow manage to fetch a one month internship, see if your partner will let you extend the internship. Try to keep on working with the same people over a period of time that increases your chances of landing a PPO there.

Keep in mind that you will get extensions of internship, or a call back to do another internship only in the event that they find your work good and they want you around. Else they will politely say we want to give an opportunity to others also, and reject your application for another repeat internship or even extension.


3. Practical Knowledge and skills

If I was not to lie, law schools do not prepare you for this part at all. Nonetheless, this is the most crucial thing once you land as an intern.

In order to shine in a law firm internship, you need the following knowledge and skills:

  1. Research skill (Get your papers published) – LawOrdo Digital Journal
  2. Understanding of contract drafting
  3. Diligence and patience

There are quite a few law students who think they will go to an internship and learn. Nobody in a law firm has time to teach an intern unless they know that intern is going to stick around for 1 year maybe. Internship isn’t a place to learn, it is a platform on which you perform.

Start working on yourself ?

If you wake up too late, you might miss the train.

One has to procure a PPO towards the end of their fourth year, or right at the beginning of fifth year if one is in a 5 year law course. In case of a 3 year law course, one has to land a PPO by the end of their 2nd year or beginning of 3rd year.

Get your Projects and articles published – Your employer will definitely search you on google.


Soft skills you need to develop 

  • Networking and relationship building
  • Communicate effectively
  • Persuasion
  • Clarity
  • Sociability
  • Ability to learn and adapt quickly

Hard skills you need to develop 

  • Legal Research
  • Due Diligence
  • Drafting
  • Negotiation
  • Critical Legal Thinking

How to make sure that CV gets picked up at the first glance?

  1. be to the point
  2. Use bullet points
  3. Don’t make it too long
  4. Don’t write anything irrelevant
  5. Use strong verbs
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