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Professional Development

Be A Great Team Player

“Must be a good team player”. How often have you seen that in job descriptions and advertisements? And how often have you wondered what, exactly, the writer means? 

After all, there are all sorts of players in every team. Among others, there are the star strikers, and the motivators, and the organisers; there are the backroom boys and girls who make sure that the team’s task gets delivered. Which of these is the writer looking for – or is s/he looking for something else entirely? 

Conflicts of Interest within the Legal Industry

As you embark on your career within the legal industry as a Legal Secretary or PA, you will very soon realise just how tight-knit this community really is and how easy it can be for a “conflict of interest” to arise. This is especially the case within barrister chambers when you consider the fact that there aren’t actually that many such firms providing this type of service in some parts of the country.

Loud and Clear: Telephone Court Hearings

If you’re the Secretary or PA of a litigation lawyer, you’ll know all about telephone hearings. Since the early 2000s, they’ve been the standard way of dealing with short applications in the courts – in fact, lawyers now have to give reasons why an application should not be heard by telephone, rather than the other way around. For others, though, the idea of having to fix a telephone hearing or conference can still be a bit daunting. Here’s a short summary of the things you need to know. 

‘Getting Married’ — time for a change?

This month we will be considering the Law Commission’s scoping paper ‘Getting Married’, a review of marriage law that was done at the request of the Government. The key conclusion of the Commission’s paper was that the law was badly in need of reform. Marriage law should provide a fair and coherent legal framework for people to marry, but sadly the Commission identified that the existing marriage law is unnecessarily restrictive and outdated. 

Conveyancing: The Importance of Accuracy

A recent case in Manchester has highlighted the importance of paying attention to detail when it comes to conveyancing. An assistant solicitor has been fined £5,000 after forgetting to register a Notice of Interest in a property. His oversight was much dearer, however, for his client. As a result of the mistake, an investor didn’t receive £40,400 due when the property was sold! 

Losing the Plot

Act of God or Force Majeure: Interesting Outcomes

You’ve likely heard the expression ‘act of God’, usually in reference to insurance claims. But what’s the difference between it and force majeure, and under what circumstances does either apply? 

Acts of God

Acts of God are usually referred to with regard to insurance and typically include natural phenomena such as floods, lightning strikes, hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes. Any large-scale, freak weather occurrence falls under this category.

Long-serving Legal Secretary Recognised For Her Outstanding Work

A member of Hethertons Solicitors team has been awarded a lifetime Membership of the Institute of Legal Secretaries and PAs (ILSPA) for her outstanding work at the leading firm.
 
Karen Chirnside has received Fellowship Membership from the organisation having satisfied the strict requirements of the Institute, which include at least six years of experience as a Legal Secretary.
 

See You in Court! Part 2: At Court

Last month, we looked at the etiquette involved in accompanying your boss to court. This month, we’ll have a look at what happens when you get there, what you can expect to happen and how you can help. 

Whether you’re attending court on a criminal or a civil case, one of the first things that will happen when you arrive is that your boss will have a conference with the client. In this article, however, I’m going to concentrate on what happens in civil cases, including family cases.

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