What we do
At Owen White our outlook is a bit different. We specialise in areas that interest us. We’re enthusiastic about what we do, which means we’re better at it. It’s a simple approach, but one that works.
Based in the Thames Valley, we are a leading commercial practice providing specialist expertise in sectors including:
- commercial litigation,
- residential property development,
- property disputes,
- commercial property, and
- corporate and commercial.
Our approach has been successful. We have an excellent reputation in the areas in which we specialise. We regularly handle work that is normally the preserve of large national firms. We act for household names, established businesses as well as entrepreneurs and start-ups. We are also recommended by the Legal 500 guide and have three of our directors ranked as Band 1 solicitors in Chambers and Partners Guide. In January 2019, Owen White were appointed onto the Heathrow Airport legal panel.
Five of the six director/shareholders trained at Owen White and all current associates started their careers with us. We have a low staff turnover and a good track record of retaining our trainees on qualification and seeing them build a long term rewarding careers with us. All our staff benefit from a great work life balance.
We are members of the British Franchise Association, Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce and are active in the Thames Valley community supporting local and charitable issues.
Training Contract Programme
As a trainee at Owen White, you will undertake four six-month seats in our departments; property, litigation, property disputes and company/commercial. However, we are now excited to be able to offer trainees the possibility of being seconded for a six month period with our client Heathrow Airport. If you have previous legal experience you may have the opportunity to apply for “Time to Count” to reduce your training period to 18 months (i.e. three seats). We usually recruit 2 trainees a year, training 4 at a time across their first and second years.
Throughout the training contract, trainees are recognised for their contribution and have regular meetings and reviews with their supervisors to ensure they are continuing to develop the skills and knowledge required for a qualified solicitor. You will also be assigned a mentor when you start your training contract. Your mentor will be a solicitor or Associate who has trained at Owen White who will be there to provide guidance and support throughout your training. In addition to trainees completing the Professional Skills Course, trainees have the opportunity to attend regular seminars, webinars and other events to develop their knowledge and skills.
We have a genuine first-name terms and open-door policy among all our employees and a nurturing, friendly and enjoyable working environment. Trainees work very closely with directors and associates and are given in-depth training throughout their training contract.
Trainees are given real responsibility and client exposure from early on. In the litigation teams, trainees have the opportunity to attend court hearings. Trainees are encouraged and provided with the opportunity to contribute to the success of the firm.
We offer trainees a package of benefits including 28 days holiday each year (including statutory holidays) in addition to additional days when the office is closed for Christmas, annual salary reviews, pension scheme, cycle to work scheme, social activities, free parking and private healthcare insurance on qualification.
What we are looking for in an Owen White trainee?
We are looking for articulate, bright trainees with academic ability, common sense and initiative, who wish to have a long and successful career at Owen White.
Trainees must have achieved a high standard of academic achievement (a minimum of a 2.1 at degree level or be on track to achieving a 2.1), but a strong, interesting personality is also vital.
Trainees should be able to demonstrate a general commercial awareness and have a good understanding of the business as well as the legal world. We are looking for enthusiastic team players with excellent communication and interpersonal skills who are also willing to learn and develop themselves.
Our training contract application process closes on 31 August 2019 for trainees wishing to start with us in 2021. If you would like to be considered for a position in 2021, please complete the application form (download below) and email that to us. Alternatively, you can print the form, complete it clearly and post it to us.
We review our training contract applications in September and then invite applicants to spend a half day at our offices where they will be interviewed and asked to carry out some activities to ascertain their fact-finding skills and other ‘soft’ skills. Whilst at our offices, you will have the opportunity to meet our current trainee solicitors and ask them about their training contracts and what they think of the firm.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a preferred LPC provider?
We do not have a preferred LPC provider. We only require trainees to complete the LPC at their first attempt.
Do you have a preference which LPC elective modules I should take?
We do not stipulate any LPC electives that we would ask you to take prior to starting with us, but would encourage trainees to study commercial electives.
I don’t have any experience – shall I still apply?
We have applicants who apply from second year of university up to and following completion of their LPC, so we understand that some applicants may not have had an opportunity to obtain legal work experience. We appreciate that applicants may not have been able to obtain legal work experience but have experience in other areas that are relevant to the solicitor career path.
Are Trainees retained after qualification?
Our trainee retention rates are consistently high and most trainees are offered and accept positions with us.
What is the trainee salary?
Similar to many regional law firms, we do not publish our trainee salary. The salary is above the Law Society minimum and is in line with what would be expected of a medium sized firm in the Thames Valley.
What are the working hours like?
Our standard office hours are 9.00am to 5.00pm. You will be expected to work beyond your contractual hours on occasion; although we do not have a long-hours culture and you will rarely be expected to work into the night or at weekends. The firm usually closes during the period between Christmas and New Year.