Ask us your Questions

In this section, we have tried to address some of the questions that are frequently asked by students. Additional questions may be directed to Laure Goubau Hart, Director of Student Programs at 514-397-5698 or [email protected]. You may also speak to any lawyer you meet during the interview process.

The Firm

How many lawyers are with McCarthy Tétrault?

With close to 600 lawyers in seven offices across Canada, as well as in New York City and London, UK, McCarthy Tétrault is Canada's premier law firm.

Where is your Montréal office located?

We are located at 1000 De La Gauchetière Street West. With a state-of-the-art design, we were committed to creating a dynamic, efficient and highly advanced work environment.

How many lawyers are there in the Montréal office?

There are 132 lawyers in the Montréal office. McCarthy Tétrault has 161 lawyers in the Québec region overall.

What is the partner to associate ratio in the Montréal office?

There are 67 partners and 57 associates and counsel in the Montréal office.

When are associates considered for partnership?

 Associates are first considered for partnership in the course of their sixth year of practice within the firm.

What are the Montréal office's billable hour expectations?

Our lawyers do approximately 1,700 billable hours per year in our Montréal office. Articling students are not required to bill a specific number of hours, but are advised that they should aim to bill that average so that they experience a realistic view of legal practice.

What are the core practice areas of the firm?

Our core practice areas are corporate finance and mergers & acquisitions, litigation, financial services, real property, tax, labour & employment and technology. We also have specialty and industry groups such as environmental, competition, bankruptcy & restructuring, mining, hospitality, energy, health and international project financing.

How are decisions made in the law firm?

The firm has an innovative governance structure to fully integrate the firm into a single national operating unit. The firm is organized by national practice groups and headed by a Chief Executive Officer and a Board of Partners composed of members who are elected nationally from among the partners in a manner which assures a reasonable representation of the firm's four major offices in Montréal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. Each office has a local management group which oversees the day-to-day operational issues concerning their respective office.


How many students do you recruit every year?

We generally hire between 6 and 8 students during the recruitment process.

How many articling interviews does the Montréal office grant?

We will do approximately 50 first interviews. 18 students will be invited to a second interview. This is a small number, and many qualified students are undoubtedly excluded. However, our aim is to give a better interview to those students that we do see.

How important are law school grades?

Law school grades are important in securing interviews, but they are not determinative. Grades are one consideration in determining how articling students are selected. We are looking for well-rounded individuals. Work experience, life experience, undergraduate grades, personal interests and extracurricular activities are also factors considered when determining whether a candidate will be offered an interview. The interview is the most important element in deciding if someone will be offered a position.

What is the position of the firm concerning failed bar exams?

You will not lose your position as an articling student if you fail bar exams. We will work with you to ensure that you successfully complete the bar exams and then join us afterwards for articling.

Does the firm prefer students who come from local law schools?

No. Attendance at a particular law school is not a determining factor in interviewing or hiring decisions. McCarthy Tétrault has an excellent track record of hiring students from all of the Canadian law schools. We also hold events at many law schools across the country. To apply in one of our Québec Region offices, you must qualify for articling according to the requirements of the Québec bar.

What are the opportunities for work at other McCarthy Tétrault offices as students and articling students?

It is possible, but there are restrictions due to the requirements made by the bars in each jurisdiction. We have facilitated national articles for students wishing to conduct articles in two jurisdictions.


When are articling students expected to start their articles?

Either in June in order to finish in December, or in January to finish in June. Our summer program generally starts mid-May.

How is work allocated to students?

Articling students and summer students receive work directly from lawyers. Students can actively seek out the work in which they have a particular interest. The Director, Professional Resources, regularly reviews students’ workload.

Do articling students have offices?

Yes. Our articling students generally have a window office. Our summer student share a larger office in pairs.

Do students have access to computers and smart phones?

Yes, each student has a personal laptop, dual 22” screens and wireless headset. Students have access to the latest online and CD-ROM research tools. Each student also receives a Blackberry upon their arrival at the Firm. Our Information Technology Department provides training to summer and articling students and is readily available to provide assistance when required.


When is the hire-back decision made?

The hire-back decision for articling students is made during the last month of the articling period.

What is the Montréal office's hire-back record?

In recent years, the majority of our articling students were offered positions.

What is our philosophy with respect to hire-back?

Our approach is to hire all articling students who have demonstrated the potential and interest to excel in private practice as part of our team.