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Emma Horscraft – Trainee Blog

February 2024

It is hard to believe that this has been my final month in the Dispute team, the last 6 months have absolutely flown by!

I have learned so much about the litigation process, client-management and the subtle art of knowing when to settle during my time in DR. The team have been so helpful and made me feel like one of their own.

It has also been a busy month for me with Business Development, having attended a number of careers events and having been invited to sit on a panel at Hull University for their current law students. It is always an honour to be invited to these events and to speak to the next generation of lawyers.

It is fair to say that Dispute may now be the front runner for me looking forward to post-qualification life, but I still have one seat to go, so up to Company/Commercial I go for my final 6 months as a Trainee Solicitor.

Wish me luck!

January 2024

It is fair to say that 2024 has been busy so far, all 1 month of it!

After a fabulous break over Christmas, it was great to be back and to tackle all of the jobs that got pushed back by the festive season. For me, this has meant a lot of research tasks, conducting evaluations of clients’ exposure and putting together hearing bundles.

Although it has been very busy, I have thoroughly enjoyed every task. The Dispute team deal with such a wide range of issues that every day is just as exciting as the day before.

December 2023

As we come to the end of the year, this month has been a great opportunity to look back at my first full year as a Trainee Solicitor. I have been in three different but wonderful departments this year and I have learned so much along the way.

I have had another great month in the Dispute team and have been especially busy with a number of Family matters which I am enjoying getting invaluable experience on.

With Christmas on the horizon, our workload in the Dispute team is slowly reducing as we begin to receive peoples’ out of office responses until the new year.

So, on that note – may I take this opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.

Roll on 2024, the year of qualification!

November 2023

November has been a great month for me in the Dispute Resolution team. I have started to find my feet within the department and become more comfortable with the civil litigation process. I have been lucky enough to be involved with a number of interesting matters that I will hopefully get to see through to the end of my seat rotation.

I also attended my Advocacy & Communication Skills Professional Skills Course this month which gave me the opportunity to develop my advocacy skills further whilst in the department where said skills may be needed.

As I head into my fourth month in the department, I am excited to see what the festive season holds in the Dispute Resolution team.

October 2023

I have done a number of different research tasks this month ranging from party wall disputes to alleged trademark infringements. I am looking forward to the rest of my seat rotation and learning more about the civil dispute procedure.

September 2023

September 2023 marks a whole year since I first started my training contract here at Rollits, and what a busy year it has been! I have learned so much and made some amazing friends along the way. I can’t wait to see what my final year of training has in store for me.

I am now in the Dispute Resolution team back in our Hull Office. Having enjoyed studying this topic at university, I am interested to see how theory compares to practice.

August 2023

August was my last month in the Private Capital department and subsequently, my last month at our York Office. It has been a busy month filled with client meetings and lots of complicated drafting.

Just as I am coming to the end of my six months in the department, I am beginning to feel more confident with drafting more complex Wills- something I could not have imagined being able to do six months ago. Sometimes it is especially rewarding to look back at the progress I have made over the last six months.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time working in York in the Private Capital team but I am equally as excited to be returning to our Hull office to work with the Dispute Resolution team.

July 2023

Summer is officially here in York! July has been filled with lots of sunny opportunities to meet and network with clients, peers and colleagues in some fabulous settings. For instance, this month we hosted our Charity Golf Day at Brough Golf Club- this was tremendously well attended and created an informal environment for people to come together and support a great cause whilst also having a huge amount of fun.

I also had the opportunity this month to attend All Saints School in York to provide the students with invaluable interview experience that they will hopefully carry forward into higher education and their careers.

As much as I have enjoyed the sociable side of my role this month, I have also had to dive back into academia as I attended my Financial and Business Skills professional skills course. This is a three-day intensive course where we are educated about the role solicitors play when providing certain regulated financial services to clients. The course was finalised with a 90 minute exam which pushes you to condense and apply the knowledge you have absorbed in the days preceding- something I have not done since I finished my LPC last year.

As a Trainee, I enjoy developing all parts of my legal personality and this month has given me the perfect opportunity to balance the social side of the role as well as continuing to learn about the importance of the work we do.

June 2023

June has been a busy month for me in terms of Business Development. Some colleagues and I were lucky enough to attend Future Humber’s enlightening event ‘Mental Health in the Workplace’ with Hull and East Yorkshire MIND.
This event, hosted as part of Humber Business Week, gave us all the skills to be ‘Mental Health Champion’s’ within our workplace. This included a brief discussion about the importance of mental health, an overview of some of the most common mental illnesses and how we can create a conversation to best support those who may be struggling.

I also had the opportunity to volunteer at Macmillan’s charity Race Day at York Racecourse on 17 June. This was a fabulous day, spent in great company for a wonderful cause.

We also hosted our Rollits Summer Drinks Party at Grays Court Hotel in York, this was an excellent opportunity to meet clients in a gorgeous setting and thank them for their business.

As for actual Private Capital work, there has been plenty of that too! I have attended a number of client meetings this month and have assisted in the taking of instructions. It is particularly fulfilling being able to see a client’s transaction through from start to finish knowing that they are pleased with the end result.

May 2023

The Private Capital team are still keeping me busy in York. I have had the opportunity to attend a number of networking events over the last few months, I have been netwalking at Naburn Lock with the Chamber of Commerce and some of my fellow trainees and I were lucky enough to attend Beverley Race Day as guests of Hull Young Professionals. These events were a great opportunity for me to meet fellow professionals from a broad range of sectors operating in the Yorkshire area.

I have done a lot of interesting research for the team this month and hope to put some of it into a couple of articles for the Rollits website. Some of the topics I have looked into are, the obligations placed on retired Trustees and the time-limits for challenging a Will or a Grant of probate. Be sure to keep an eye out for my articles in the coming months.

Alongside my research this month, I have had the opportunity to learn to draft a Will containing a Life Interest Trust. This has been challenging as there are a lot of different circumstances to consider but it is particularly rewarding once you get the hang of drafting something so complicated.

With spring becoming a distant memory, I am definitely looking forward to seeing what my first summer at Rollits has in store for me.

April 2023

It has been a busy month for me in the Private Capital team here in York. I have been involved in lots of ongoing matters and have had the opportunity to sit in on lots of client meetings. This is a part of my role as Trainee that is new to me. In my last seat, in the Property department, there wasn’t ample opportunity or need to sit down with clients and understand their family background etc, so this is an experience that is quite unique to Private Capital and subsequently very fulfilling.

I have done more drafting this month, trying to perfect my understanding of Wills and the different ways we can draft these to cover an individual’s unique circumstances. I am also trying to develop my understanding of Trusts and how these can be used in Lifetime Planning and Wills in order to protect against the harsh Inheritance Tax provisions that follow after the worst happens.

It is really rewarding being able to work amongst a team that is so knowledgeable and hard-working, I know that I am learning from the best.

March 2023

March has been my first month in the Private Capital department in York. It has been lovely getting to know all the York-based staff and settle into a new team.

This month I have been getting to grips with drafting Lasting Powers of Attorney as well as drafting Wills. This is definitely something I found daunting to begin with but with the support of my team, I am now feeling more confident. I have been able to witness first-hand the importance of having a valid Will as well as putting Powers of Attorney in place to protect you should you find yourself in a situation where you cannot make decisions for yourself.

I am really enjoying the client-facing element of Private Capital - I have been able to sit in on a number of client meetings and I am really enjoying getting to meet the people I am working for.

February 2023

February marks the end of my time in the Property department and I cannot believe that my first 6 months at Rollits are already over. This month I have spent a lot of my time drafting, which is a useful skill for any trainee. I have been drafting Engagement Letters, Licence’s, Leases as well as lots of different Land Registry forms.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Property, it is a busy, fast paced department with a wonderful team and I will be sad to leave. However, I am also excited to move on to the Private Capital department in York to continue my legal education and broaden my practical knowledge.

January 2023

It has been a very busy month in the Property department this January. The New Year has brought with it a wave of new business that has kept us all on our toes.

Many of my tasks this month have centered around title investigations; determining who has the benefit of certain rights and who is burdened. I have also done a lot of research around the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 which is a key statute for any Property solicitor.

As I am coming to the end of my time in the Property department, I have been reflecting on how much I have learned in this time - as well as how many friends I have made in the team. I will be sad to leave but also excited for whichever department awaits me next.

December 2022

The festive season is now upon us but things are just as busy as ever for us here at Rollits. This last month I have had lots of exciting opportunities to try new things within the Property Department. I handled my very first completion, drafted some interesting documents, including a Licence for Alterations and a Facility Agreement and conducted a number of title investigations.

It has also been an eventful month outside the Property Department as well, as my fellow trainee, Molly Bloom, and I organised a firm-wide food drive for Hull food bank which was a tremendous success- so much so, we are hoping to make it an annual firm tradition.

November 2022

November has been an eventful month for me. I was delighted to graduate from my LPC LLM at the Barbican at the start of the month which was fabulous.

The Property department has been keeping me busy as always, this month I was able to witness my first completion. This was particularly rewarding for me as it was a matter I had worked on since my first week at the firm.

The Partners have kindly organised a number of interesting Webinars this month, these have centered on the drafting of conditional sale agreements and other planning matters.

I am excited to see what the next month will bring as we head into the festive season.

October 2022

It has been another whirlwind month for me in the Property department here at Rollits. I feel that I am starting to find my feet and slowly building my confidence with the help of the excellent team around me.

This month I have managed a number of different Land Registry applications, including a first registration. This was most interesting for me as it meant trawling through deed packets dating back to the 1800s, it was truly amazing to see how our local area has changed over the last few centuries.

I have also had the opportunity this month to see a few matters through to their completion and this is always a particularly rewarding part of the job- seeing the hard work pay off.

September 2022

It has been a busy month for me in the Property department so far, having just joined the firm there has been a lot to learn in a short space of time. Everyone has been really helpful and given me the opportunity to learn to manage my own workload.
This workload has consisted of making applications to the Land Registry, drafting the forms to accompany these applications and carrying out research tasks. It is exciting getting to put things I have learned in theory into practice, surrounded by a supportive team. I am looking forward to what my next month in the Property department will bring!

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