From Paralegal To Trainee Solicitor By Rhiannon Morgan
I began working for Tilly Bailey and Irvine in 2014 and successfully applied for a position as a trainee solicitor through the firm’s internal application process. I began my training contract on 1st September 2016.
Between 2014 and 2016, I worked in the new build conveyancing department in the Wynyard office and managed my own (busy!) caseload. I feel that I have started life as a trainee with a distinct advantage as I had already gained a number of vital skills of a fee-earner. For the first three months of my training contract, I stayed in the new build department and utilised the knowledge I had gained as a paralegal continuing to run my own caseload whilst ensuring all tasks were entered into my training diary.
On 5th December 2016, I moved to the Barnard Castle office to begin training in both the family and probate departments. This is when I experienced a big change and it felt I had begun the proper life of a trainee. I am really enjoying the new team and the new work. However, it was quite a shock to the system to go from running files and delegating tasks to support staff, to sitting in new surroundings in a new area of law and being passed tasks from different stages of the transaction. Having said that, it didn’t take too long to get settled in and I am making the most of my experienced colleagues to learn as much as I possibly can from them! I feel that it’s extremely important for trainees to be able to adapt to new surroundings and effectively pick up new work and think for themselves.
One thing I have learned is the importance of being up to date with the training diary. I have made it my goal to complete my diary as and when I do things, as otherwise I find myself in a panic at 5pm on a Friday trying to remember all of the different tasks I have carried out during the week.
Tilly Bailey and Irvine’s Barnard Castle office is completely different to what I was used to at the Wynyard Office. Barnard Castle is very much a “high street, private client office” offering conveyancing, agriculture, probate and family advice whereas our Wynyard office predominantly deals with commercial work. I feel privileged to be able to experience a completely different environment and have the opportunity to push myself out of my comfort zone!
You can read more about our training process here.