Clerkship Selection Process
How do I apply for the clerkship program?
We accept applications from law students in their 4th or penultimate year of study.
You will need to apply via CVmail for our NSW, VIC and WA clerkships.
To complete an application go to www.cvmail.com.au
Advice and tips for the G+T clerkship application
Your resume is the first opportunity you will have to introduce yourself to a firm, so take your time preparing your application and consider how you can differentiate yourself.
G+T look for ambitious, bright, friendly and enthusiastic individuals who identify with our core values- innovation, entrepreneurial spirit, commercial acumen and a determination to succeed.
How can I prepare for the interview process?
We know that the interview process can be a nerve-wracking experience and we want you to put your best foot forward. Prior to the interview, do some research on the firm and identify practice areas of interest and prepare some questions to ask the interviewers. Speak confidently and clearly throughout the interview and attempt to respond to all the interviewers’ questions.
Be prepared to talk about yourself at the interview. Arrive 10-15 minutes prior to your scheduled time.
What will I be asked at the interview?
Throughout the interview process you will be asked a range of questions about yourself, your achievements and your areas of interest in the law so we can get to know you. The interview provides you with the opportunity to create an impression and build rapport with the partners and lawyers you may end up working with.
What should I bring to the interview?
Please bring an up-to-date copy of your academic transcript and a passport sized photo of yourself.
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Clerkship Program – Sydney/Melbourne/Perth
Upon commencement as a clerk, you will participate in an induction program to familiarise yourself with our systems and processes. Throughout the clerkship, you’ll participate in our customised in-house training program which provides you with the opportunity to develop technical and commercial skills and to broaden your legal knowledge.
How many rotations will I undertake?
Sydney – As a summer clerk, you’ll complete a 10-week placement made up of two five-week rotations across any two of the firm’s practice areas. Spending time in two practice groups allows you to gain broader skills and experience and can prove insightful if you don’t know which area of law you wish to specialise in.
Melbourne – As a summer/winter clerk you will undergo a 3-4 week placement in one of the Melbourne office’s practice groups.
Perth – As a summer/winter clerk you will undergo a 2-3 week placement in one of the Perth office’s practice groups.
Rotations are offered to summer clerks and graduates as part of their formal development programs.
How is work allocated?
Each clerk is assigned a partner who is responsible for allocating work along with your mentor, a senior lawyer in the group. We encourage summer clerks to take a proactive approach to sourcing work and building relationships within their practice groups of interest.
How much responsibility will I receive?
From day one clerks are given the opportunity to test their skills. Our clerks can take on more responsibility as they progress through their rotations, getting involved in some really challenging work.
Do clerks typically work individually or in teams?
Depending on the size of the matter and resourcing required, clerks often work directly with a partner or on larger transactions in bigger teams. Our teams are resourced to allow you greater involvement on a transaction and a higher level of responsibility.
How much partner contact is there? How accessible are the partners?
We have an open-door policy at Gilbert + Tobin. Throughout the clerkship you will have an opportunity to work directly with a partner on a transaction. Partners will guide and support you throughout the clerkship and will provide you with ongoing informal and formal feedback at your end-of-rotation review.
What social activities are planned ?
There are a number of firm and inter-firm social activities during the clerkship program. Summer clerks who join us during December will be invited to attend our annual Christmas party and there are also numerous practice group drinks and regular catch-ups over lunch with HR, mentors and buddies.
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During my clerkship, what resources and support will be available to me?
A wide range of resources and support will be available to you as a clerk. Our offices are very modern and have excellent facilities. You will have access to valuable on-site and online knowledge resources to help you keep up to date with the latest legal developments. There is a convenient on-site cafe in our Sydney office, and break-out areas and meeting rooms in each of our offices.
Will I get my own office and secretary?
Clerks are placed in workstations or in office-share arrangements with more senior lawyers throughout their rotation. Clerks have access to secretarial and word processing support to assist them during the clerkship.
Are there opportunities to contribute to pro bono?
Sydney summer clerks can nominate to complete a rotation in our Pro Bono practice group during the clerkship period. On top of this all Sydney clerks will be given the opportnuity to work on a small pro bono task during the clerkship period.
Following the clerkship everyone is encouraged to take on pro bono work. Our lawyers work up to 50 hours per person a year on pro bono matters. Work experience may be directly related to your practice area or there is opportunity to represent the firm at the Community Legal Centres, Matthew Talbot Homeless Persons Roster, Wyong Outreach Centre and many other external community programs.
What about graduate opportunities?
Our clerkship programs are the core recruitment initiative for our graduate resourcing. We also recruit lateral graduates however this is on an “as needs” basis.
Sydney and Melbourne
New graduates join the firm generally in one of our two formal intakes – February or August of each year.
Our 18-month graduate program consists of two rotations of approximately nine months each for our Sydney office, and three rotations of approximately six months for Melbourne. Rotations are available in all our practice areas including pro bono and you will be actively involved in not only chargable work but non-chargeable work as well. This includes business development, knowledge management, training and pro bono work.
At the end of the 18-month graduate period and following your end of rotation performance review we will discuss your placement as a junior lawyer within a practice group.
Our 12-month graduate program consists of 2 rotations of approximately 6 months each. Rotations are available in any of our Perth practice groups and you will be actively involved in not only chargable work but non-chargable work as well. This includes business development, knowledge management, training and pro bono.
In addition to firm-funded Practical Legal Training, we have designed a graduate training program which complements your academic knowledge with invaluable practical and commercial skills. You will participate in an ongoing training program covering the core skills and knowledge required as a young lawyer.
Our graduates may also have the opportunity to spend some time in one of our other offices.
What learning and development training is offered to graduates?
Gilbert + Tobin greatly value learning and development of our graduates, which is why in addition to firm-funded Practical Legal training we have also designed a Young Lawyers Learning & Development program. This program aims to complement your academic knowledge with invaluable practical and commercial skills.
Graduates participate in a fortnightly training program covering core skills and knowledge required as a young lawyer.
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Our clerks form the core of our paralegal team for the year ahead. From time to time we recruit additional paralegals to meet the needs of our practice groups.
Do you prefer paralegals at a particular year of study?
We recruit paralegals from 3rd, 4th and 5th year.
How many days a week do you require your paralegals to work?
Our paralegals work casually and flexibly, typically 2+ days a week. We will work with you to help you balance your study commitments while being a part of the Gilbert + Tobin team.
Do I need experience to become a paralegal?
Any previous paralegal experience is advantageous but is not a pre-requisite.
Is there a particular time of year when paralegal positions are advertised?
We accept applications throughout the year. If you would like to register your interest to be consider for paralegal roles as they arise, please register your details here.
Do you offer internships for overseas law students?
G+T typically don’t offer internships outside of the Summer Clerk program. To be eligible for the Summer Clerk program you must be an Australian citizen, or have permament residency in Australia.