Hugo qualified as a solicitor in the Firm’s Corporate & Commercial team in 2020.
Why did you choose Boodle Hatfield over any other firms?
I was fortunate to get a place on the Vacation Scheme and thoroughly enjoyed the two weeks I spent at the firm. Although I was not offered a position that year, I reapplied and was successful the second time round. I had had a really great opportunity to experience life in the office and I was certain it was the place for me. Boodle Hatfield has the right balance of great quality work, superb training and a wonderful atmosphere so it was an easy decision to make.
Describe your experience integrating into the firm having received your Training Contract offer and during your first days and months after joining?
The firm is really great at helping you integrate, even before your first day in the office. Once you have the offer for the Training Contract, you are invited along to all the Summer and Christmas parties and you can often be involved in the firm’s various sporting endeavours too – one of our current future trainees plays football with us occasionally! This makes a huge difference when you join as you have plenty of people who you know across the firm.
One of the advantages to completing your Training Contract at Boodle Hatfield is that you are given a supervisor who you share a room with in each seat. All the supervisors are hugely experienced and very willing to help.
In the early days of your first seat you can find yourself trying to do a task but not perhaps being completely certain as to what the best approach is. Your supervisor will be able to quickly point you in the right direction so that you can then investigate the matter in more depth. This may be suggesting a resource to look at or introducing you to the correct person in the team to speak to about a particular topic.
I regularly play football for the firm but you can also get involved in yoga, netball and there is even a choir. There are some great social events which are hosted throughout the year such as “BH Strictly”, for which the trainees were encouraged to make behind-the-scenes videos for each couple! In litigation we have Wine Club on a Friday evening which is a great chance to chat with others in the team.
Boodle Hatfield is, therefore, a very friendly place and you quickly feel part of the firm.
How much responsibility have you had as a trainee so far and what is the typical type of work you have been involved in?
As a trainee you are given a remarkable amount of responsibility very early on. You have your own matters to work through and you correspond regularly with the clients. Once you have done something a few times, you are encouraged to manage most aspects of the matter. You are of course supervised and can, of course, always ask for guidance.
The great thing about litigation is that you get a really broad range of different work; our team largely deals with property litigation and corporate litigation. Property litigation can involve drafting and serving notices in relation to leases and advising on debt recovery matters. On the corporate side, I have been involved with disputes between businesses and their suppliers and with helping put together art loan agreements.
Although it is nice to put some of the law you learn at university and the LPC to good use, there is a lot you learn on the job!
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
I have been fortunate enough to be involved with a few longer projects, one of which has meant helping manage an application for Light Obstruction Notices for one of our clients. Although this is quite a niche area of law, it very conceptually interesting – you are effectively putting up a virtual billboard to prevent light from reaching a building..! I have very much enjoyed taking the applications through from start to finish.
How would you describe the culture of the firm?
Everyone works hard and to a very high standard, but you are expected to have life outside of work too.
What has Boodle Hatfield given you that you may not have got from elsewhere?
Boodle Hatfield gives you the opportunity to work on some really interesting legal issues for some very exciting clients with a genuinely great group of people. The nature of the firm’s clients means that you are likely to be speaking to people who have a real interest in the problem you are trying to solve.