Why join us?
White & Case is a global elite firm with a top tier Australian offering. Our Australian offices focus on infrastructure and energy projects, mergers & acquisitions, project finance and environment & planning in domestic and international markets.
Fuelled by collaborative excellence and trust in each other, our enterprising teams make an impact. Come and make a mark with us.
High-profile client projects, nuanced local market knowledge and global capabilities define who we are. As a White & Case graduate in Australia, you'll work on challenging, sophisticated and complex cross-border matters across both the developed and fast-growth markets where rules are still being made (often with our help). You'll be an integral member of our team and have genuine responsibility early on in your career.
Working across borders
Over the past 100 years, we've built an unrivalled network of 43 offices in 30 countries. That investment is the foundation for White & Case's client work in 160 countries today. Many White & Case clients are multinational organisations with complex needs that require the involvement of multiple Firm offices. You'll work in a fast-paced, collaborative environment with colleagues across the global network on multijurisdictional matters, and experience the operational realities of cross-border law. We believe global exposure is an integral part of becoming a great lawyer, and our graduates are encouraged to take up international secondment opportunities, either as a part of their program, or early in their career.
Commitment to growth
We're strategically committed to substantial growth between now and 2020 — in numbers of clients, revenue and profitability, and lawyer headcount. For you, the increase in our associate numbers means more opportunity for career advancement.
Download our global recruitment brochure to learn more.
I wanted to be a part of a global firm — a firm that could give me opportunities to travel, to work on cross-border matters and with international clients.
White & Case is the best place to start your legal career given the incredible training and learning opportunities offered by the team in Australia.
You can really tell that White & Case has made a concerted effort to hire team members that are diverse, get along and enjoy spending time together.
White & Case provides great mentoring and training, and has everything a new lawyer needs to excel in their career.
Working at White & Case is a unique blend of being a completely new office that is part of a very well-established global network.
The culture at White & Case is like no other firm I’ve worked in. It’s a close-knit team of caring, supportive, down-to-earth individuals always available to share expertise with juniors.
Our teams in Melbourne and Sydney work with clients across the globe on all aspects of the energy, infrastructure and mining & metals sectors.
We offer clients legal services throughout the full life cycle of their projects, including environment & planning, project structuring, project development, project finance, corporate advice, M&A, litigation and arbitration.
Our team works closely with lawyers located in offices around the globe, offering market-leading experience and executing tough deals in challenging places. Whether at the highest levels of global corporate life, in transitioning markets or with our New York and London offices, our lawyers have a reputation for getting the job done.
The huge market demand for infrastructure and the race to secure energy and natural resources in Asia drives our team. With megaprojects such as China's "One Belt, One Road" kicking off, catastrophic dynamics like a sustained downturn in certain commodities at play and with major players based in Asia (corporates, commercial banks, export credit agencies, development banks and multilaterals), it is increasingly important for our team to stay coordinated across the region and keep up to date with industry trends, government policies and client developments so that the team is well positioned for opportunities.
We were recently named "Law Firm of the Year in Project Finance and Development, Australia" by Best Lawyers.
A career at White & Case is a move into the fastest-growing sectors of international business. Where others hesitate, we accelerate. Come be a part of it.
Through our Global Citizenship initiative, you can feel proud of being part of a Firm that takes its responsibilities as a global citizen seriously and, by leveraging our unique global footprint and ability to collaborate across borders, does work that makes a tangible difference on a wide range of social and environmental issues.
As a graduate in Australia, you will have unparalleled opportunities to do cutting-edge pro bono work on the issues that matter most to you — both locally and cross-border, with many of the world's leading NGOs. Last year, our clients in Australia, included advising Hagar International, Red Cross International, the World Bank, Conservation International, Save the Children, Disability Discrimination Legal Service, and the Vance Centre for the Environment. Some of the issues we advised on include gender-based violence, illegal logging, LGBTI issues, trafficking of women and children, compliance with international environmental treaties and corporate governance for charities.
We invite you to read more in our Global Citizenship Review.
Inclusion is a business imperative for us. We are naturally diverse because of the work we do, the locations we're in, and the type of people and clients we attract. At White & Case, we promote equality at work and an inclusive culture by supporting employee-led diversity networks, flexible working and an open office environment.
You'll be part of a challenging graduate program which gives you genuine responsibility early on — something many firms promise, but few deliver. If you'd like to be part of an enterprising team that makes an impact, we'd like to hear from you.
We structure our graduate program to meet both your short-term career goals and long-term aspirations. So — how does it work?
You'll work through three six-month rotations, taking into account your preferences, to fully equip you with the necessary skills to become a skilled, global commercial lawyer.
From day one, you will work on fast-paced, cutting-edge and complex multijurisdictional projects, experiencing the operational realities of cross-border law. You will gain client exposure early on, as you handle substantive matters with first-rate guidance and supervision from leaders in their field.
You will be assigned a Supervisor, Mentor and a Buddy who will provide you with assistance throughout the process, and will adequately challenge you to find your passion in the law and reach your full potential. Our training and mentoring opportunities, delivered by leading practitioners across our practice groups, will help you to become a great lawyer. As a truly global firm, we provide our graduates with unique opportunities to work on international matters — both commercial and pro bono — with our large global network of offices. We develop associates with a global mentality and international skillset. As part of this, we also offer international opportunities (including rotations) to our junior Associates.
Of course, some of your training will be more formal. You will complete both compulsory and elective modules of the Practice Legal Training provided by the College of Law, during your induction and over the course of your graduate program. We also run in-house training, specialist seminars and workshops for graduates, which you're encouraged to attend.
As you manage and plan your career, both during and after your graduate program, you'll have plenty of support. Our Associate Career Framework lets you know exactly what's expected of you as an associate at each stage of your development and is supported by an unmatched global program of training courses.
Most of our clients are multinational organisations, so almost everything you'll work on will cover more than one jurisdiction. To help develop a taste for global thinking, we encourage and support a six-month graduate rotation in one of our offices across Asia-Pacific, including Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo.
While speaking the local language should help you settle in, it's not vital, as you'll be predominantly working on common law matters in English. Wherever you go, we'll support relocating you and remain in regular contact throughout your time there.
We are growing the scope of international rotations as we grow the graduate program to include other regions in the future.
Before joining your first practice area, you will attend a bespoke two-week induction program, designed to equip you with the skills and knowledge necessary to start your career as a graduate lawyer. Sessions include how to time-record, research skills training, how to manage your clients effectively, advocacy and communication skills, financial and business skills and IT training, to name but a few examples. You will also complete your mandatory modules as a part of the Practical Legal Training, and there are also opportunities to socialise with your cohorts at various events.
Who we're looking for
There is no such thing as a typical White & Case graduate. We're proud to recruit people from all walks of life, from different backgrounds, and with widely varying personalities.
Even so, there are a few special qualities we always look for.
Intelligence and drive are essential. Your interest in us suggests you have the ambition and determination to become a high-flying global lawyer.
Next, the way you think is crucial. You'll enjoy the intellectual challenge of analysing how the law works and being creative, yet commercial, in how you interpret it. Your clients will come to depend on your lateral thinking, your focus on detail, and your ability to resolve complex issues and structure international transactions.
You're a team player, on whom colleagues can rely to perform tasks accurately, efficiently and on time. Integrity is vital too. Not only to maintain your clients' and colleagues' trust, but to uphold our reputation. In other words, your professional standards have to be beyond question.
You'll also not be afraid of hard work, as you'll be working for a leading global law firm where the client always comes first. You're expected to ask questions about your work or seek feedback on your performance — that's why we have an 'open door' policy. You will work in small, focused teams, and never be short of information about matters you're working on or how you're doing.
Your strength of character is probably reflected in your interests and activities outside the office. And of course, everyone appreciates a good sense of humour!
If you're up for the challenge, then this is the place to be.
If you're thinking seriously about a career in law, it's vital you join a firm that 'feels right.' That's why we run vacation clerkships and additional in-house events — so you can find out if White & Case is the right fit for you (and vice versa).
A vacation clerkship is a great way to experience first-hand what life is like as a White & Case graduate.
You'll be welcomed into a practice group (taking into account your preferences), where you'll undertake meaningful tasks (including drafting contracts and memoranda, researching and interpreting legislation and case law, preparing client alerts, and engaging in document review and due diligence work). You'll also have the opportunity to attend client meetings, work on pro bono matters, and broaden your understanding of the life cycle of the deals that your team is working on.
You will also have plenty of opportunity to build your professional network. Throughout the clerkship, you will work closely with your Support Team, consisting of a Supervisor (a partner), a Mentor (an associate), and a Buddy (a junior associate or current graduate), who will provide you with assistance, advice, and both formal and informal feedback. Additionally, in-house practice group seminars will allow you to better understand the kind of work we do and the service we offer to our clients.
Above all, the clerkship is as much a process about White & Case finding out who you are as it is about you finding out who we are. As such, clerks are encouraged to ask questions and to get involved in the range of extra-curricular activities on offer.
Vacation clerkship dates
- Summer (Melbourne): Monday 19 November – Friday 14 December 2018
- Summer (Sydney) Monday 19 November – Friday 14 December 2018
- Winter (Melbourne): Monday 24 June – Friday 19 July 2019
- Winter (Sydney): Monday 24 June – Friday 19 July 2019
How to apply
Our application period for the 2018-2019 clerkship intake has now closed.
This website page will be updated with further details on our application process and key dates early in 2019.
To contact the recruitment team, please email [email protected] or call (03) 8486 8000
We will be holding a workshop later this year which will give law students an insight into the complexities and challenges of a major infrastructure project.
Registration will be via this page. Further details and dates for registration will be posted soon.
Are you a female law student thinking about a career in commercial law but not sure where to start?
We are pleased to launch the Women at White & Case Mentoring Program, starting September 2018 to March 2019. This mentoring program is designed to support female University students and connect them with experienced and like-minded associates from all levels of the firm.
The program will encourage students to engage in open discussions with women from our Melbourne and Sydney offices. You will have the opportunity to discuss career aspirations and goals, progression and challenges facing women in the legal profession. The program will provide the mentor with the opportunity to share their knowledge and offer advice to their mentees based on their own career experiences.
Can I apply for clerkships in both Sydney and Melbourne?
Yes. We are one Australian office with two locations, therefore our clerkship opportunities have been designed accordingly. The application form will ask for your preference of clerkship intake, and then we will re-confirm this with you at the point of offer.
How many vacation clerks do you take each year?
Around 20 to 25 across Melbourne and Sydney.
Are final-year students eligible to apply for clerkships?
Yes. We accept students in their final year of their studies to apply for our vacation clerkships
What should I include in my covering letter?
The covering letter should highlight a commitment to a career in international law, a clear articulation of why you want to work at White & Case and the requisite skills or experience you have to become a successful graduate lawyer.
To whom do I address my covering letter?
Lauren Evans, Recruitment Manager
How long is your graduate program?
18 months, including 3 x 6 month rotations
Do you provide PLT as a part of the graduate program?
Yes. We will pay the full course fees for the Practical Legal Training (PLT) through College of Law as well as the cost of admission.
What practice areas offer graduate rotations?
Corporate M&A, Infrastructure, Environment & Planning, Project Finance, Commercial Litigation and International Arbitration.
How does the international graduate rotation work?
We endeavor to provide an international rotation opportunity during the 18-month program. This could be in the form of a rotation or secondment and is subject to business needs. We will take into consideration your preference for location and practice group, but again, it is subject to the resourcing needs of the Firm. There are also other international working opportunities outside of our graduate program.
What benefits does the firm offer?
After being with the firm for six months, you can be reimbursed for 50 per cent of your gym membership (including Pilates and yoga studios) up to AUD 600 annually.
We also offer:
- Discounted Corporate Health Insurance
- Annual flu injections
- Daily fresh fruit
- Agile and flexible work practices
- Employee-assist program
Our training is comprehensive, the work is cutting-edge, career prospects are unlimited and the rewards are excellent. To find out more, visit us at one of our events. Further information will be updated on this website in early 2019.