10 Key skills & qualities you need to excel in Commercial Law
Mar 04, · It’s why part of being a good commercial lawyer is knowing the industry or industries in which your clients operate like the back of your hand. Clients will come to you because of your expertise and knowledge of their industry and your ability to . Commercial lawyers are solicitors who advise companies and governments on business-related issues. They can either be transactional lawyers, meaning they draw up and review the legal documents that underpin the deals their clients are working on, or contentious lawyers, .
Solicitors specialising in litigation actually spend only a small proportion of their time in Court and in 25 years of representing clients in high value commercial litigation and fraud cases in the Commercial Court and Chancery Division in how to use paint in photoshop High Court in London I have never been the advocate and I have never had a solicitor advocate on the other side. We manage the legal team, including the barrister, and the client, juggling the anxiety and the risk that comes with conflict, aiming to get the client the result they need.
The key skills are listening and guiding clients to take the right decisions — including whether to start litigation in the first place and knowing when to end it, whether by settlement or committing everything to a trial. It does mean being entirely on top of the issues and uncertainties and being able to communicate them coherently and express a view on what is likely to happen. Even with the best legal skills in how to draw bugs bunny and lola step by step world, a fine appreciation of the way in which judges take decisions, and a good dose of luck, everyone is wrong a certain proportion of the time.
All litigation starts with uncertainty: will my client win or not? All claims can always be settled, you just have to pay what is demanded or drop the claim and pay the costs. It is the middle ground where it gets interesting and even entrenched attitudes change as litigation develops.
The costs rise and the risks of trial focus the mind very firmly on outcomes. A good solicitor guides the client and keeps them in a position to assess their choices on an informed basis. One view is that how to fly standby on american airlines good settlement is one that neither side likes but both sides can live with.
I would also observe that people settle for what they need rather than what they want. Getting your client, and the other side, to one of these balancing points is difficult, fascinating and almost always a better outcome for the client then putting it all on black, giving the wheel a spin and asking the judge who wins. I strongly recommend a year of basic psychology and a good book on game theory as essentials to build the skills to help your future clients to take the right decision.
If all else fails, and the client can afford it, there can always be a trial. A very big part of that is what the barrister is going to be arguing and how good that argument can be made. So, a top tip is to think about what the barrister needs and to use them to shape the case from an early stage.
The claims that work are the ones where there is actually some joined up thinking and the case is always focused on what might happen at trial with both solicitors and counsel iterating, developing the legal arguments according to the factual evidence and making sure that the client gets the most effective representation possible. Historic reticence or a lack of adequate technology previously prevented employers from embracing remote working but this has been replaced with the evidence that for some roles long term remote working is achievable.
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Whether you're looking at private practice, in-house legal or an what makes a good commercial solicitor business support role, you'll find your future here. The leading City law firms have grown at more than double the speed of the wider UK legal industry.
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Dec 11, · Commercial lawyers are attorneys who specialize in business law. They might work on negotiating and drafting contracts, reviewing employment agreements or company mergers. Some commercial lawyers. A good solicitor guides the client and keeps them in a position to assess their choices on an informed basis. One view is that a good settlement is one that neither side likes but both sides can live with. I would also observe that people settle for what they need rather than what they want. It's a case of helping clients restructure various operations, handle administrations in the best possible manner and those clients buying up smaller unhealthy companies or rivals (e.g. Lloyds/HBOS, EPIC/Whittard) will be facing a great deal of competition regulation to consider.
I joined the firm, what now seems to be, a long time ago after having completed my law graduation from a top law school in India. From my very early days, I was intrigued by the world of corporate law, which back in the day was in a relatively nascent stage in India, and I decided to do a specialisation in it. And today with the additional benefit of hindsight, I am delighted that I took that decision to go for the fascinating world of corporate law. Frankly, if I was to repeat this all over again, I would not do it any differently.
I am delighted and grateful to be a part of an exceptional organisation and in particular an internationally renowned corporate practice. Every day is a new experience and new learning. We have an incredibly talented, and internationally respected, pool of partners and it is a treat to get a chance to learn from them and see them in action on a daily basis. Working in a firm like HSF comes with many benefits, the main one being: you get a chance to advise top quality international clients.
If someone was to ask me how difficult is it to become a corporate lawyer, I would say that it is not at all difficult. But what is difficult is to become a good one! And to be able to achieve that you need to start early.
The question then is, what does it take to become a good corporate lawyer? Well, I am not any expert at this but based on my relatively short experience of about seven-eight years in this space, I strongly believe that there are certain qualities which are essential to enable one to become a good corporate lawyer. My top five picks are as follows and these do not appear overnight — these have to be developed over a period of time, so the earlier one starts the better.
The most important quality is to know the law well and have conceptual clarity — there is no substitute for this. If one wants to succeed in the world of corporate laws, one needs to be technically sound in particular in contract law, Companies Act and other corporate laws e. The life of a corporate lawyer like many other top professions might look glamorous to many, but it requires a lot of hard work. There are times when one would have to sacrifice weekends for clients and other team members.
The world of corporate law is always evolving and sometimes faster than one expects , which makes it fun. Every now and then, you have new laws, legal structures and products being introduced in the market. One needs to be keen to learn and at times, unlearn and take up new challenges. It is an absolute must to have good attention to detail at all times. Given the nature of work firms like mine do, there is no margin of error. Small mistakes could significantly cost our clients and the firm and therefore it is a must to ensure that one works on this quality from the start.
Often trainees and junior associates are too focussed on learning the law and doing the work that they are given, and they end up not focussing on the latest commercial developments. They think that it is a responsibility of the partners and senior associates.
If one wants to be ahead of their peers and competitors, commercial awareness is a must. Being aware of the commercial developments is a matter of habit, the earlier one starts the easier it gets later on. Sid made it to Herbert Smith Freehills after growing up in a small town in India.
Come listen to Sid talk on Thursday evening about his top five picks to become a good corporate lawyer and real life examples that you need to know if you aspire to be a corporate lawyer at a top international firm. About Legal Cheek Careers posts. And how is it to be a corporate lawyer? Technical: Knowing the law The most important quality is to know the law well and have conceptual clarity — there is no substitute for this.
Attitude: Ready to make that extra effort The life of a corporate lawyer like many other top professions might look glamorous to many, but it requires a lot of hard work.
Keenness to learn more and taking up new challenges The world of corporate law is always evolving and sometimes faster than one expects , which makes it fun. Attention to detail is indispensable It is an absolute must to have good attention to detail at all times.
Commercial awareness puts you ahead Often trainees and junior associates are too focussed on learning the law and doing the work that they are given, and they end up not focussing on the latest commercial developments.
Herbert Smith Freehills lccareers Solicitors Students.