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How To Write A Graduate Lawyer Cover Letter + Examples

Team Prosple

Our guide provides proven tips and examples to help you craft a standout graduate lawyer cover letter that showcases your fit for the role.

Landing that perfect first job as a lawyer requires more than just a diploma. The all-important graduate lawyer cover letter – that one-page document that can make or break your chances – stands between you and that dream position. This is your chance to bypass the applicant tracking system and directly connect with the hiring manager.

Feeling the pressure? We get it. This guide will be your cover letter bootcamp. We will break down the essentials and provide actionable strategies to create a winning cover letter. We will also provide 2 legal cover letter examples to spark your creativity.

How should you structure your graduate lawyer cover letter?

Graduate Lawyer Cover Letter - Recruiters prefer cover letters

Landing your dream lawyer job starts with a well-written cover letter. Research shows that 78% of hiring managers prefer candidates who submit a cover letter. This is your chance to grab the attention of busy hiring managers and convince them you are the perfect fit. Here's how to structure a personalised cover letter.

1. Contact Information

Make sure your contact information is accurate and professional. Here's what to include:

  • Your Full Name: Double-check for typos.
  • Phone Number: Include your mobile number as well.
  • Email Address: Use a professional email address. Avoid nicknames or anything unprofessional.
  • LinkedIn Profile: Add profile URL here.

2. Salutation

Graduate Lawyer Cover Letter - How to address a cover letter

The best option is to address the cover letter to a specific person, like the hiring manager or recruitment officer. Check the job posting or firm website. Often, they will list who to contact for applications. If no name is listed, try calling the firm's HR department or using LinkedIn to find the hiring manager.

If all else fails, use “Dear Hiring Manager”. It is always better to have a salutation than none at all. Avoid “To Whom It May Concern”. This feels impersonal and generic. It is better to put in the extra effort to find a specific person.

3. Opening Paragraph

The opening paragraph is your chance to grab the reader's attention and make them want to read more. Here are some strategies to write a compelling opening:

  • Briefly mention that you are a graduating law student applying for their program.
  • Start strong and hook the reader with a specific detail. Mention something from the job posting that excites you or a relevant achievement from your law school experience.
  • Ideally, reference something specific about the firm's work or a recent interesting case. This shows you did your research and genuinely want to work there.

4. Body Paragraphs

These are where you build your case and convince them you are a great fit. Here are key things to include:

  • Highlight relevant skills and experience. Think back to your law school courses, internships, or volunteer work. Pick experiences that showcase the skills and knowledge the firm is looking for in a graduate lawyer.
  • Focus on achievements but don't just list duties. Be specific and quantify your results whenever possible.
  • Enthusiasm matters. Briefly explain what motivates you to pursue a career in law and why you are excited about this specific firm.

5. Closing Paragraph

Briefly restate why you are a strong candidate and excited about the opportunity. Express your interest in an interview. You can even suggest specific times you are available. Finally, thank them for their time and show your appreciation for considering your application.

6. Closing Salutation

Use a formal closing salutation. If you addressed the letter to a specific person, use "Sincerely," followed by your full name. "Sincerely," or "Regards," followed by your full name is perfectly acceptable if you can't find a specific name.

7 proven strategies to write an effective graduate lawyer cover letter

On average, about 250 people apply for each corporate job opening. Here are 7 strategies to craft a cover letter that gets your resume noticed and lands you that interview.

I. Customise your cover letter for each law firm or employer

NEVER send the same cover letter to every firm. Review their website and any recent news. Are they known for stellar legal research in a particular field? Did they win a groundbreaking case you admire? Mention these details and explain how your skills align with their focus.

Instead of saying you are a great researcher, mention a specific legal research project you excelled in. Briefly describe the challenge and the outcome. This provides concrete evidence of your legal expertise.

Express genuine interest. Briefly mention why you are drawn to this particular firm. Is it their work on a specific legal issue you are passionate about? Their pro bono efforts? Highlight something that resonates with you.

II. Use a professional tone & format

Graduate Lawyer Cover Letter - Cover letter tone and format

While your qualifications are important, presentation matters too. Here's how to ensure your cover letter looks polished and professional.

  • Use a clear and easy-to-read font like Arial or Times New Roman.
  • Single line spacing is standard, with a double space between paragraphs for better visual separation.
  • Maintain consistent margins (one inch all around) for a clean look.
  • Avoid slang, abbreviations, or overly casual language.
  • Double-check for typos and grammatical errors. A sloppy cover letter reflects poorly on your attention to detail.
  • Instead of saying "responsible for," use verbs that highlight results, like "managed," "increased," or "developed."

III. Quantify your achievements

Landing a job at a leading law firm requires strong legal knowledge but it is also about showing how you can apply it. Law firms deal with complex legal concepts and need lawyers who can understand and handle those complexities.

If your legal research for a professor or a mock trial led to a breakthrough, mention its impact. Discuss how many relevant cases you analysed or the specific legal arguments you identified.

For example, instead of simply saying "participated in a legal aid clinic," you could say: "Conducted legal research for 10 low-income clients facing eviction, identifying relevant housing code violations in 80% of cases."

IV. Keep the cover letter concise & focused

Law firms are busy places. Recruiters don't have time to wade through lengthy cover letters. Your goal is to grab their attention quickly and showcase your qualifications efficiently. Here's how to keep your cover letter concise and focused:

  • Aim for a single page. This forces you to prioritise the most impactful information.
  • Avoid unnecessary phrases or flowery language. Get straight to the point and highlight your value.
  • Don't list every legal class you took. Highlight coursework or experiences related to the firm's practice areas or the specific job you are applying for.

V. Don't repeat what is on your resume

Your resume shows your academic achievements, relevant coursework, and any legal experience you have. But the hiring manager already saw that. Reading the same information twice is boring. 

The cover letter is your chance to shine beyond the bullet points. Think of it as bonus content. Here's where you can highlight specific skills or experiences connected to the position. Show the firm you did your research and understand their needs.

VI. Add keywords from the job description

Many leading law firms use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to screen resumes. These systems scan for keywords related to the job requirements. So you should read the job description carefully to identify the skills and experience the firm is looking for. Look for specific legal areas, software programs, or research methods mentioned.

Find ways to naturally integrate the keywords throughout the text. For example, if the job description mentions "contract negotiation" and you have coursework in that area, you could say: "My coursework in contract negotiation equipped me with the skills to analyse complex agreements and advocate for clients' best interests."

Don't overuse keywords. Look for synonyms or related terms that convey the same meaning.

VII. Proofread carefully for errors & typos

A typo-ridden cover letter can sink your chances faster than anything. Law firms value attention to detail, and a sloppy cover letter reflects poorly on your professionalism. Here are the ways to proofread your cover letter properly.

  • Read it aloud. This helps catch typos and awkward sentence structure.
  • Step away and come back. Taking a break lets you see your cover letter with fresh eyes.
  • Don't rely on just one pass. Proofread carefully several times and focus on grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
  • Ask a friend or family member to proofread your cover letter for a second opinion.


Key Points

Customise for each employer

  • Tailor the letter to each firm
  • Cite specific achievements and express genuine interest

Use a professional tone & format

  • Employ clear, professional language
  • Adhere to standard formatting guidelines

Quantify achievements

  • Highlight measurable impacts of your legal work
  • Demonstrate your ability to handle complex concepts

Keep it concise & focused

  • Aim for brevity
  • Prioritise relevant information and avoid unnecessary details

Avoid repetition of resume information

  • Use the cover letter to expand on resume highlights
  • Show deeper relevance to the job

Include keywords from the job description

  • Integrate relevant keywords naturally into the text to align with the firm's requirements.

Proofread carefully for errors & typos

  • Thoroughly review for mistakes
  • Use techniques like reading aloud and seeking a second opinion

2 examples of a graduate lawyer cover letter to inspire you

Check out these 2 real-world examples of graduate lawyer cover letters to get your creative juices flowing.

Graduate lawyer cover letter example 1 

Amelia Jones


123 Street, Brisbane QLD 4000 | (04) 1234 5678 | amelia@email.com | https://au.linkedin.com/

Ms. Jane Doe                                                                                                April 27, 2024

Graduate Recruitment Officer

XYZ Law Chambers


Dear Ms. Doe,


I am writing to express my keen interest in the Graduate Lawyer position advertised on Prosple. As a graduating law student from the University of Queensland with a strong academic record and a passion for corporate law, I am confident I possess the skills and dedication necessary to excel in this role at XYZ Law Chambers.

XYZ Law Chambers’ reputation for excellence in corporate law is highly respected in the legal community. I am particularly impressed by the firm's recent work on the acquisition of a prominent renewable energy company. Your firm expertly handled complex regulatory frameworks and secured advantageous terms for the client, resulting in a significant expansion of the client's portfolio and market influence.

Throughout my law studies, I consistently demonstrated a strong aptitude for corporate law subjects. I achieved High Distinctions in both Mergers & Acquisitions and Corporate Governance. I was selected for the university's prestigious Corporate Law Moot Competition team where I honed my research, writing, and public speaking skills.

Beyond academics, I gained valuable practical experience during my internship at ABC Corporate Law Firm. I assisted senior lawyers with drafting contracts, conducting legal due diligence, and researching complex corporate transactions. Notably, I played a key role in the successful negotiation of a major contract clause for a high-profile client.

My strong analytical and problem-solving skills, coupled with my meticulous attention to detail, allow me to quickly grasp complex legal issues. I am also a highly motivated and results-oriented individual with excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I am available for an interview at your earliest convenience and can be reached by phone at (04) 1234 5678 or by email atamelia@email.com.



Amelia Jones

Graduate lawyer cover letter example 2

David Lee                                                                                                       david@email.com

456 Main Street                                                                                                   (03) 9876 5432

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Ms. Sarah Walker                                                                                                April 27, 2024

ACME Law Firm

Melbourne, VIC 4321


Dear Ms. Walker,

I am writing to express my keen interest in the Graduate Lawyer position advertised on Prosple. As a recent Queensland University of Technology (QUT) graduate with a Juris Doctor, I am confident my strong academic background, relevant coursework, and eagerness to learn make me a valuable asset to your firm's intellectual property (IP) practice.

Your recent work on the groundbreaking "InnovateTech v. TechGenius" case has been particularly inspiring. The successful defense of your client against patent infringement allegations shows the firm's prowess in navigating complex intellectual property disputes. This truly sets ACME Law Firm apart in the legal landscape.

Throughout my law studies, I developed a particular interest in IP law. I achieved High Distinctions in both "Copyright Law" and "Patent Law," and my final year thesis, titled "The Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Copyright Ownership," explored the emerging legal challenges in the digital age. 

I actively sought opportunities to broaden my understanding of IP. I volunteered at the Queensland Intellectual Property Society (QIPS) for 2 years, assisting entrepreneurs with basic trademark registration procedures. This experience provided firsthand exposure to the practical application of intellectual property law and the importance of clear client communication.

I am a highly motivated and detail-oriented individual with excellent research and writing skills. I am proficient in legal databases and possess strong analytical abilities, allowing me to grasp complex legal issues efficiently. My teamwork and communication skills were honed through my participation in the QUT Law School Moot Court Competition, where our team placed second.

I have attached my resume for your review and welcome the opportunity to discuss my qualifications further in an interview. Thank you for your time and consideration.



David Lee

Prosple: Stand out from the crowd in your law job search

Graduate Lawyer Cover Letter - Prosple

Prosple specialises in connecting students and recent graduates with entry-level opportunities. This means you will be browsing positions specifically meant for people with your experience level, cutting through the noise of general job boards. Unlike other portals, Prosple lets you apply to as many positions as you qualify for without any charges.

Let’s take a look at Prosple’s key features.

  • Stop wasting time with irrelevant listings. Prosple uses smart algorithms to match you with law-specific jobs and internships that align with your skills and interests. 
  • You can refine your search further using filters like salary, location, and job type.
  • Find many opportunities specific to your legal background. Prosple isn't flooded with generic positions so you can focus on building your legal career.
  • Rest assured that you are applying to established law firms, legal departments within corporations, or reputable public interest organisations. Prosple prioritises partnerships with trustworthy employers.
  • Never miss a deadline. Get notified about new job postings that match your criteria so you can be among the first applicants.
  • Gain valuable insights into different legal careers with Day in the Life Series. This unique feature lets you see the typical day of lawyers in various practice areas, helping you choose the right path for your interests.
  • Prosple’s Work Rights feature is a game-changer for international law graduates. It filters out internships you wouldn't be eligible for based on your visa status. Focus your energy on applying to positions that are a perfect fit.
  • Access valuable career resources, like resume and cover letter writing tips tailored for legal professionals and interview preparation guides. These resources can help you stand out from the competition.


A stellar graduate lawyer cover letter is the golden ticket to interview invitations and a dream legal career. Don't settle for anything less. Convince them you are the eager, sharp mind they need on their team. Remember, this is your story – tell it with confidence.

Prosple connects ambitious law graduates with top employers across Australia. With a free profile, you can search for exciting opportunities, showcase your skills and experiences, and get discovered by leading law firms and organisations.

Join Prosple today and see how Prosple can help you get ahead.