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2025 Graduate

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About this programme

We offer graduate positions across all our DLA Piper offices in Australia. During your graduate programme, you’ll experience three six-month rotations throughout our seven different practice areas to gain a broad range of experience. You’ll also have the opportunity to undertake a rotation in our Pro Bono or Business Advisory teams, giving you breadth in your knowledge of the law as well as the practical skills that will stay with you for your entire career.

Graduate programme

We understand the transition to a commercial law firm can be challenging as a new graduate, so we have designed a structured graduate programme to support you every step of the way.  Our graduate programme starts with a national induction week where graduates from all Australian offices come together in Sydney for a week of learning and networking. The induction week is an excellent opportunity to meet your graduate cohort and build strong relationships from day one. Our comprehensive induction will give you the opportunity to hear from inspiring keynote speakers, network with senior leaders and get to know your cohort through fun team building and social activities. You’ll participate in professional skills workshops and legal learning labs equipping you with the knowledge you will need to launch your career and help you leverage your international network from day one! 

During the 18-month programme, you’ll experience three six-month rotations where you’ll work in three different practice groups, so you can explore which practice group and sector you’re passionate about. You’ll have a strong support network to guide and mentor you including a buddy, development coach, and supervising partner as well as a dedicated early careers team throughout the programme.  

Our graduate programme seeks to create a culture of learning and development from the time you accept an offer with us. In partnership with College of Law, we’ll support you with paid study leave as you complete your practical legal training during your first rotation. The early careers team will help you navigate the admissions process and ensure you reach this career milestone. 

Alongside your rotations, you’ll undertake a learning programme equipping you with the professional and technical skills to succeed as a lawyer. You’ll broaden your knowledge as you progress through your programme and you’ll put this learning into practice as your rotate around our different practice groups. 

By the end of the graduate programme, you’ll emerge with a clearer understanding of where your strengths and interests lie. The experience you’ll have gained – and the networks you’ll have nurtured – will provide a strong foundation for your future career as a solicitor at DLA Piper.

Am I eligible?

We fill our graduate positions through priority offers made to candidates who complete our clerkship. More information on our clerkship programme can be found here, including how and where to apply.

Key dates

Our graduate intake starts in mid-February for all our Australian offices.



At DLA Piper, we are committed to making reasonable adjustments and removing disability-related barriers. This is so everyone, irrespective of a visible or non-visible disability, neurodivergence, a long-term health condition or injury, has an equitable opportunity to succeed in our recruitment process.

If you think you may need adjustments or additional support to enable you to participate in our recruitment process, please get in touch with our Early Careers team and we will be happy to support you.

We understand that sharing your needs with us may feel daunting. We will have an open discussion with you about what will work best for you in the recruitment process, and you only need to share what you feel comfortable with. Our team will ensure that the information you provide will be treated confidentially. The information will only be shared with others involved in the process, on your approval, and where necessary.

We will use the information you share to put adjustments in place for you at any stage, or at multiple stages, of the recruitment process. This is to enable you to perform to the best of your ability, and to have an equitable opportunity to perform and thrive.

Recruitment roadmap

Recruitment roadmap

Please refer to our clerkship programmes for an outline of our clerkship recruitment process.

Ready to shape your future with DLA Piper?

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Frequently asked questions

How many graduate positions do you offer each year?

We offer approximately 25 graduate positions across Australia each year. 

When do your graduates commence with the firm?

The graduate programme starts in mid-February for all graduates nationally. 

Do you offer international opportunities?

As a global firm, we offer a range of international opportunities supporting you to deveop a global mindset, share knowledge and work collaboratively across borders. This includes the types of matters and clients that our clerks and graduates work on, as well as the international experiences our people participate in, such as international conferences, secondment opportunities andlearning and development opportunities.

Do you offer international secondments?

We are committed to providing our colleagues with the opportunity to experience working internationally. Secondments benefit our clients, our business and our people. We offer both short and long term secondment opportunities and launched the New Deal in 2022 which has 4 global secondment programmes that colleagues can participate in.

We prioritise opportunities for our lawyers at the 1 – 3 year level to have an international experience as we understand that living and working in a new location and experiencing a new culture provides fantastic personal and career opportunities. 

How many clerkship positions do you offer?

We offer approximately 50 clerkship positions across Australia each year. 

When can I apply for the clerkship?

You should apply for the clerkship two years before you are eligible to start the graduate programme. This means applying in your penultimate year (year 2 of a three-year degree, or year 3 of a four-year degree). 

How do I apply for a clerkship or graduate position?

If you complete our clerkship, you’ll be considered for a graduate position. We fill all of our graduate positions through priority offers made to candidates completing our clerkship in the year prior. 

Can I apply for a clerkship and/or graduate position in multiple offices?

No, you can only apply to one position in one office each year. 

Can I do a clerkship in one office and apply to another for a graduate position?

You should apply for a clerkship in the office where you would like to complete your graduate programme. 

Is there minimum academic entry criteria?

No, we have no minimum academic entry criteria. 

I did not study in Australia. Can I still apply?

Unfortunately not. Eligibility for our early careers programmes in Australia is limited to people studying Australian law degrees.

Can I apply to DLA Piper if I require a work permit to work in Australia?

Unfortunately, no. Current eligibility for our early careers programmes in Australia is limited to Australian and New Zealand citizens and permanent residents.

Will I need to show my exam certificates?

You’ll need to provide evidence of your academic achievements (e.g. exam certificates/transcripts) when submitting your online application.

Can I practice before sitting the online assessment?

Yes. There are practice assessments online, which we encourage you to complete before sitting the assessment. 

Can I add in any mitigating circumstances on my application?

Yes, we encourage you to detail any mitigating circumstances on your application. You may be asked to produce documentary evidence. 

Do all DLA Piper offices in Australia have all the practice groups?

No, however we practice a wide range of business law services – please refer to our website for a full list of our services in Australia. 

Do you hold open days?

We run a ‘Discover DLA Piper’ event in each office between May and July. You can find further details in the Events section of our website.

Who should I contact if I have questions?

Please contact our Early Careers team who’ll be happy to help.