Phineas Hirsch, Trainee Solicitor, Slaughter & May

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Name Phineas Hirsch
Job Trainee Solicitor
Employer Slaughter & May, London
Education BA Spanish and French (2005), Trinity College Dublin; Graduate diploma in Law (2006), Legal Practice Course (2007), BPP Law School, London

As a Trainee Solicitor at Slaughter and May, I assist the qualified solicitors and Partners. I was attracted to a career in law because it builds upon the transferable skills I developed during my arts degree – particularly the analytical, research and communication skills – and allows me to put them to good use. The opportunity to work abroad and widen my careers options a few years down the line spurred me to apply to a City law firm.

Normally I’m in the office by 9.15 am. I scan my inbox to check for anything urgent that needs immediate attention, and then get on with the tasks I've been assigned. These include advising clients on how the law may affect their case or proposed transaction, researching documents and case histories, co-ordinating the work of all parties involved (including overseas lawyers) in each transaction or case and instructing barristers for representation where necessary. I usually leave around 6.30 pm unless I'm busy on something urgent.

The best thing about my job, apart from the people, is the training I've had. I've been on courses on professional skills, business and finance, and attended regular firm-wide seminars. Before my contract began, the firm sent me to work in Barcelona for six months – which included a two-month intensive language course – and I'm due to spend the last six months of my contract in Paris.

I recently worked on the acquisition of a solvent subsidiary from a large corporation in administration. This was really interesting because all sorts of issues cropped up (often late at night!) that required astute thinking and teamwork to overcome. It was hard work, but we managed it.

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