Sample Legal Graduate Cover Letter

James Smith
34 Miller Street
Mountains VIC 3333
Tel: 03 8888 5555
Mobile: 0555 555 555
Email: James.Smith@email.com

[date]


Ms Annabel Jones

HR Manager
Legal Matters Associates
Level 100 Borrowing Place
1 Samly Street
Melbourne VIC 3000

 

Dear Ms Jones

Re: Graduate Program, Legal Matters Associates

Please accept this letter, and the accompanying resume and academic transcript as application for the graduate program advertised on your website.

I graduated in 2007 with a Commerce/Law degree from the University of Mountainville and have legal experience gained working as a volunteer and as a summer clerk.

I recently completed a summer clerkship in the property and corporate division of The Lawyers Firm. In each division, I assisted senior associates and junior lawyers in the running of files for major private sector and government clients. This experience developed my research, drafting and analytical skills, as well as my knowledge of relevant property and contract law. It gave me the opportunity to work autonomously on smaller matters and as part of a team on more complex files. During the three months of my clerkship, I was able to foster successful working relationships with colleagues and the firm's clients.

My practical legal skills have also developed as a result of my work as a volunteer at the Matthew Legal Centre. Working one evening each week since March 2004, I interview clients, draft legal documents, manage multiple files and prepare briefs for counsel. In addition to increasing my understanding of the legal problems that affect ordinary people, in the areas of consumer credit, tenancy and criminal law, my experience at the centre developed my attention to detail and understanding of a client's problem before attempting to provide a legal opinion and strategy for resolution.

I have excellent oral and written communication skills. I was captain of the successful mooting team at university, have contributed articles to university newspapers and presented workshops to clients on understanding their legal rights at the Matthew Legal Centre. I was President of the university law society in 2006, Community Ambassador for the Kids off the Street Project in 2005 and I was awarded the University Medal for achieving the highest result for the subject Real Property Law for 2006.

I am interested in a legal career at Legal Matters Associates because of the firm's reputation for providing high quality legal advice, its diverse blue chip client base and its commitment to service. I would love to be part of an innovative and growing firm that values initiative and hard work.

My resume and an official transcript of my academic results are enclosed. I look forward to being able to discuss the graduate lawyer program further at an interview.

Yours sincerely

[sign here]

James Smith

Try to limit the letter to three-quarters of a page in length. Remember, your letter will be read by someone with limited time and needs to be designed for clarity and impact.

Your name, address, and telephone number should be typed on the letter. It is preferable to use standard business form, with your address and telephone number and the date at the top right, and the addressee's name, title, and address at the left, above the salutation. At the close of the letter, your full name should be typed just below your signature. Letters should be addressed using the appropriate title in the salutation. Never use a first name unless you know the addressee personally. Ms. should be used if a woman's preference is not otherwise clear. The cover letter template illustrates the typical business correspondence style to which your letter should conform.

Like the resume, your cover letter should be carefully drafted and typed. Don't just rely on spell check, since some mistakes will not be caught by spell check. Have a friend read over the final draft to make sure that it is typo-free, as your ability to draft a perfect document is of great importance to all legal employers.

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