Paralegal roles can sometimes be viewed as administrators and don’t get involved with some of the more challenging work but that wasn’t my experience, it was much more of an involved hands-on role. It was a great way to get a taste of a law career.
I joined Stephens Scown as a paralegal in 2017 and found the help, support and guidance I received; this reinforced my desire to take the leap to become a solicitor.
Life as an employment paralegal
I was a member of the HRExpress team which provides advice to employers on the full range of day to day HR and employment issues including recruitment, dismissal and disciplinary procedures.
I worked on both contentious and non-contentious matters and had lots of client contact. This meant I could build up a good rapport with them and I learnt how important client service really is.
I got involved in drafting tribunal orders, claims and defences alongside witness statements. It wasn’t all from behind my desk though I attended employment tribunals and sat in on preliminary hearings.
The benefits of starting as a paralegal:
- One step ahead – Having been with the firm for 18 months, I already knew how the computer systems worked and the firm’s ethos so with backing from my team leader led me to apply for a training contract.
- Support network – On arriving at my first seat as a Trainee, I already knew lots of people and there were familiar faces in the team. I was assigned a buddy who I could go to if I had any questions. They gave me a full debrief with hints and tips to help me along the way all over a coffee and cake!
- A taste of your future career – Working as a paralegal and getting a taste of my future career was really invaluable and if you have any doubts that law is for you it gives you the opportunity to try it out.
My future as a trainee
My first seat is in Real Estate which is completely different to Employment and I was excited for the challenge of learning a different discipline.
I’ve been in the seat a month and have experience with leases, residential sales and commercial developments. I’ve already draft leases and have even exchanged and completed on files already!
My supervisor takes the time to explain things to me in detail and provides constructive feedback on all my work.
I am really enjoying life as a trainee and I cannot wait to continue my journey with Stephens Scown.