A year in the life of a newly qualified solicitor
Wednesday, December 8, 2021
Wednesday, December 8, 2021
I often get asked by fellow professionals, clients and those considering a career in law, “what has it been like qualifying as a solicitor during the Coronavirus pandemic and how have you adapted to this experience?”
As 2021 draws to a close, I thought now would be a good time to reflect on the past year and share some of my experiences I have had as a Solicitor at Samuel Phillips Law.
I joined Samuel Phillips in April 2021 on qualification and I currently work as Solicitor in the firm’s very busy Family Department. Prior to joining Samuel Phillips Law, I completed my training contract at another regional law firm based in Newcastle upon Tyne, in which I undertook training in a number of areas of law including; Family Law, Immigration, Property Law and Private Client.
For the last 10 months of my training contract, I was required to work from home, something which has very much become the ‘new norm’. I also found myself working remotely from home when I first joined Samuel Phillips Law and began life as a newly qualified solicitor.
Initially I found it daunting joining a new firm during a global pandemic, however the warm welcome I received from my colleagues at Sameul Phillips Law meant that I soon found myself fitting in and becoming part of the firm’s culture. As part of my induction, I was individually introduced to each of our firm’s departments and was provided with a “buddy” on joining the firm. I have since found myself introducing new staff members to the firm and helping them settle in as the firm continues to succeed and grow in size.
Since joining Sameul Phillips Law, I have been able to significantly build upon my interest in Family Law and gain further experience in the sector, continually building my knowledge and my expertise. In addition to representing parents in Private Children Law and Care Proceedings, I have also been exposed to representing spouses who are going through Divorce Proceedings and assisting victims of domestic violence to obtain domestic violence protections orders and injunctions; something which has increased sadly, due to the many lockdowns we have experienced throughout the pandemic.
Every day has proven to be different and I have found myself constantly having to adapt to new challenges and situations as a newly qualified solicitor whilst abiding by Coronavirus restrictions. In the past year I have found myself taking instructions from clients and representing them at Court via video link as well as advising clients in person appointments whilst being socially distant and wearing a face mask. Fortunately, the Family Courts and the professionals that work within Family Law have, in the main, adapted really well to working remotely and via video links from the outset of the very first lockdown in late March 2020.
There have been many case highlights for me over the last year; recent examples would include supporting a parent to keep their children in care following Local Authority involvement, and another where I assisted a parent to finalise Christmas contact arrangements so that they could spend valuable time with their child over the festive period.
As 2022 approaches and I move into my second year as a solicitor, I look forward to continuing to develop my experience and skills at Samuel Phillips Law, building upon my current experience, and helping many more clients with various family law matters.
If you would like advice or assistance on your own particular situation, then please do not hesitate to contact our friendly and supportive Family Law team on 0191 232 8451.