Freshfields is ideal for associates seeking exciting international work. The firm is in an expansion phase, which means lots of opportunity for early hands-on experience—plus strong mentorship and a friendly culture are additional perks. Freshfields’ roots may date back to the 1700s, but the firm’s recent momentum in the U.S. awards an exciting career outlook for its associates. The attorneys at Freshfields have a global perspective, which allows the firm to excel at handling complex, cross-border work.

Firm Stats


Total No. Attorneys (2022)

2.5K - 3K


No. of Partners Named (2021)



Featured Rankings

Vault Law 100


No. of 1st Year Associates Hired (2021)



No. of Summer Associates (2021)

48 total (46 2Ls; 2 1Ls)


Base Salary

Base Salary (2022)

Vault Verdict

With its strong international presence and cultural sensibilities, Freshfields continues to grow and impress in the U.S. Beyond law school attended and academic competence, the firm emphasizes cultural diversity, multilingualism, and an interest in international work in recruiting. Coworkers are helpful, laid back, and pleasant, and while they enjoy socializing together, there’s no pressure to sacrifice work-life balance. Partners and associates enjoy good, mutually respectful relationships, and partners care about helping associates develop. Formal training programs are helpful, but the best learning comes from engaged partners and senior associates. Lateral hires assimilate well both socially and professionally. Due to lean staffing, associates get consequential work, face time ...

About the Firm

For more than 250 years, Freshfields has remained a constant at the top of the U.K. and European legal market. With 27 international offices, the firm has expanded its global reach and recently has become a player in the United States with growing offices in New York, Silicon Valley, and Washington, DC. Its U.S.-qualified team is now 300 strong, with roughly a third of the U.S. partnership and associate team having joined since the start of 2019.

Established Name, Modern Growth

Founded in 1743, Freshfields just might be the oldest international law firm in the world. Its first client was the Bank of England, which remains a firm client to this day. In 1801, the first Freshfield, James William Freshfield, joined the firm as a partner. Successive generations of lawyers in the Freshf...

Associate Reviews

  • “The day-to-day atmosphere is very laid back and pleasant. People are respectful and caring. It seems like people genuinely enjoy spending time with each other at and after work. Staff are treated with the same level of respect as everyone else, and are included in most events.”
  • “The firm is pretty social, but no one feels pressured to come to after-hours events if they’re not. Everyone is incredibly friendly and welcoming, and there is a vested interest in people having work-life balance, and being part of business development. The partners have an actual open-door policy, and the staff are genuinely treated well. Could honestly not ask for better culture.”
  • “Everyone I've worked with during my time at the firm has been helpful, and genuinely wanted me and the firm to succeed. People treat each other with respect here, even when work is stressful and deadlines are tight. To me, that says a lot about the character of the people here.”
  • “I chose the firm based on the top-notch international work, but also because everyone just seemed so nice. I was very happy to be proven right. There is great camaraderie regardless of year or status, it is incredibly progressive, and it allows many opportunities to interact and lead projects beyond your year. Everyone does their utmost to respect life outside of work.”

Why Work Here

Who We Are

More than 2,800 lawyers who work in 150+ countries and speak over 70 languages. Freshfields combines the entrepreneurial and collaborative environment of a boutique firm with the top clients, scale, mandates, resources, benefits and training of one of the oldest and largest international firms in the world. 

With top-tier lawyers in the U.S. in M&A, corporate governance, securities and shareholder litigation, antitrust, white-collar defense and investigations, restructuring, technology and CFIUS, we offer clients the ability to work with the world’s first “jurisdictionally agnostic” firm, capable of delivering elite legal advice in every major practice area and in every corner of the worldWe help clients navigate their most complex business issues and capitalize on their most significant opportunities. This work involves executing complex cross-border transactions, dealing with the most challenging multijurisdictional litigations and global investigations, and handling arbitrations and regulatory issues involving multiple countries.

Diversity at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

"At all levels of Freshfields, we are absolutely committed to driving diversity and inclusion forward — from grassroots efforts run by employees, to our partners whose leadership in this area is essential The delivery of market leading advice depends on our ability to build and harness the creativity of diverse teams. To do this we must attract and retain the most talented lawyers from across the world by fostering an environment in which our people can flourish, inclusive of their gender, race or ethnicity, background,..."

Getting Hired Here

  • “My firm participates in the winter career fairs and OCI for feeder/T20 law schools. There is some training and guidelines for interviewers. I believe the candidate's school, GPA, and personality are all key factors in the hiring decision, as well as multilingualism.”
  • “Freshfields actively seeks folks who they think would be a good cultural fit. Academic success and competency is also a large factor, but Freshfields is striving to achieve a certain cultural identity here in the United States that emphasizes cohesion and a healthy social environment, coupled with competitive practice areas. Their recent hiring is directly in line with those goals, in my opinion.”
  • “Law school and grades are, of course, major points that make an applicant stand out. My interviewers seemed very interested in prior work experience, and sought those who had a demonstrated commitment to international work. It was also clear that the interviewers were concerned with getting to know the interviewee as a person, and making sure that they were passionate and, above all, a friendly person who would be pleasant to work with day to day.”

Perks & Benefits

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