Herbert Smith Freehills

Herbert Smith Freehills


As one of the world’s leading law firms, we advise many of the biggest and most ambitious organisations across all major regions of the globe. We are a global force with a market leading position in Asia Pacific. Our disputes practice is acknowledged as the number one in the UK and Asia and includes our leading international arbitration practice and award winning in-house advocacy unit. We are a market leader in corporate with strengths in energy, financial institutions, pharmaceuticals and healthcare and technology, media and telecommunications.  Allied to this is a deep vein of quality that runs through our other practice areas, such as finance, competition, real estate and employment, pensions and incentives. We also have specialist areas such as intellectual property and tax.  We offer 50 first year workshop places, 100 vacation scheme places and 70 training contracts each year.  For a truly international experience, summer vacation scheme students can apply to spend time in one of our international offices.

Different perspectives help us to see our client's problems in different ways.  We have a strong diversity and inclusion programme which helps us to attract and retain the best talent, engage with our people and foster innovation.  Our employee networks play a key role in shaping our approach.  We have a range of networks, including the Women Lawyers network, Women in Business Services network, Multiculturalism network, LGBT network, Family network and Ability network.  The Ability network focuses on making the entire firm more confident in its understanding of disability.  We run awareness-raising events, socials and provide networking opportunities – both internally and with our clients.  For example, we recently hosted an awareness raising session about autism and dyslexia.

 We are delighted to be involved with EmployAbility on this event which will provide students with an excellent opportunity to receive careers advice, skills training and to network with a wide range of individuals from trainees to partners.  The members of our Ability network are extremely enthusiastic about participating in the event and sharing their insights.

Please see our website for information on our graduate careers and our commitment to diversity and inclusion:




Daniel Hudson

My cycling accident in Spring 2011 and return to work the following year (and since) has given me insights into some of the disability (physical and mental) issues that are associated with a traumatic event and which come into play, more generally, in connection with disability in the workplace and the wider community.  My experience of the support I received (including from a great many at the firm) makes it a pleasure to co-sponsor HSF Ability in the development and implementation of its objectives and to assist in ensuring the firm continues to engage (both internally and externally) with disability issues in a positive and progressive manner.

Dan Hudson, Partner and Co-Sponsor of HSF Ability


As the mother of two children with autism, I have become acutely aware of how different, and difficult, the world can be for someone with a disability.  In our case, a hidden disability often means that expectations are set for my children that they are simply unable to fulfil.  One of my sons is unlikely to work.  For the other, moving into the workplace and establishing a meaningful career will represent a huge challenge.  Whether he is successful will undoubtedly depend in large part on him finding an understanding employer and, equally important, understanding colleagues.  I was delighted to hear that Herbert Smith Freehills intended to launch a disability network as the more everyone knows about the impact of disability on people at work, the more it must help my son and others with a disability to achieve success in their chosen career

Alison Matthews, Consultant and Co-Chair of HSF Ability