During my three-month stay at Christofi Law I gained more experience and exposure to a legal practice than during all my previous internship opportunities combined.
Not only was I able to assist in various tasks, but also I have had an unparalleled opportunity to experience first-hand how an expanding law practice is run. This was largely possible due to the fact that I shared the office with Mr. Christofi – this enabled me to ask many questions and observe how to liaise with clients, prioritise the tasks and manage the caseload.
On day one of my internship I had an opportunity to visit The High Court of Justice (Queen’s Bench division) where the firm was representing the defendant. Not only was the outcome successful, but also the case became a “reported” case. A few weeks later I was given a task to go to The High Court again, in order to issue the negligence claim against a law firm which operated as a partnership.
The following weeks were not less exciting and from day one I was being given various tasks which I had to prioritise to adhere to a tight timescale. What I most appreciated during that time was that the significance of each task I was dealing with was thoroughly explained to me. This enabled me to see the broad picture of the transaction and understand the importance of each legal and technical step.
On various occasions I had a chance to book counsel, draft the supporting instructions or assist in drafting directions for a case management conference. I also completed a conveyancing transactions under supervision (acting both for buyer and a seller), wrote letters to the court (for instance in order to amend defendant’s records) or liaised with clerks. I also had a chance to assist to make an application to the court for a charging order against a defendant’s property and once an interim charging order was obtained, an application to have it registered at the Land Registry. Similarly, I applied to the Land Registry for a commercial legal mortgage to be registered and collated necessary documentation in support of it.
What I really appreciated was that Mr. Christofi put a real time and effort into making sure that I gained real knowledge of what a solicitor’s work entails.
For instance I was fortunate enough to attend a conference with counsel and client and see first-hand that a tactical approach in terms of next step is as important as its legal technicalities. I also had a chance to visit local county courts where I filed a defence and a counterclaim, visited the Bankruptcy Court, The Law Society and various law chambers.
I thoroughly enjoyed my experience and the variety of tasks I was given. What is more while studying for the Legal Practice Course I can see many references to what I did in the office, which I am sure will help me when revising towards my exams. I would recommend any future intern is to stay over a longer rather than shorter period of time in order to gain useful exposure and see the final outcome of the cases in which they assisted.