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Lucy Stephenson

Lucy is a second year trainee at Rollits in Hull. Her current seat is in the Dispute Resolution department.

September 2019 - I have thoroughly enjoyed my first month in the Dispute Resolution department.

At the moment I am sat with colleagues in the family team, which has meant I have been able to get involved in some interesting discussions! I have been involved in numerous family matters which has included submitting an application to the Land Registry to register a matrimonial home rights notice against the title to the matrimonial home, and also preparing instructions to counsel. This afternoon I will be attending my first client meeting with a colleague in the department to provide the client initial advice in relation to a divorce. I look forward to being involved with the matter from the start.

I have also been involved in other matters within the department which has included obtaining case law in relation to section 216 Insolvency Act 1986 to assist with the preparation for a hearing requesting permission under the Act to reuse a prohibited name. I was also able to attend the hearing and it was good to get familiar with hearings in judges chambers in advance of a hearing I have been asked to do in relation to a third party debt order next month.  Other work has included considering a letter before action and drafting a response to the solicitors for the claimant, drafting a directions questionnaire and undertaking numerous research tasks. The latter has included research in relation to section 27 Trustee Act 1925 advertisements in relation to a debt claim by our client.

I am looking forward to attending the annual Hull Law Society Law Ball at the Hilton with colleagues tonight.

August 2019 - Today is my last day in the property department and on Monday I move to Dispute Resolution for my third seat. I look forward to getting familiar with a new area of law and to get to know better my colleagues in the department.

This month I have continued to draft various documents and more Land Registry applications. Throughout my seat I have become increasingly familiar with a number of application forms and so I am now able to work more independently on these. I have also been involved with various agricultural matters which has introduced me to the Basic Payment Scheme entitlements and how these are dealt with on the sale/purchase of farming land.

I have also been tasked with various research tasks again this month. This has included research into the SDLT liability when a partnership transfers a property out of the partnership to one of the partners. SDLT liability for partnerships is a notoriously complex area of law and it takes a while to get to grips with the principles!

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in the property department and will miss my colleagues in the department. It is hard to believe that I am already half way through my training contract!

July 2019 - It’s my second to last month in the Property department and I can’t believe where the time has gone!

This month I have had the opportunity to draft some documents I have not looked at before. This has included a rent deposit deed, a transfer of part containing provisions in relation to a planning permission and a statutory declaration to support an application for adverse possession.

I have also completed on a number of matters including lease extensions, a Deferred Fees Agreement and the transfer of a property between a company and its wholly owned subsidiary. In addition to this I have undertaken research in relation to rentcharges, old rates of SDLT and a ‘Tithe Redemption Annuity’ which was contained in an old conveyance. I look forward to undertaking more research in my last month with the department.

It has also been a sociable month, with the annual Rollits Charity Golf Day in the first week of July, and Driffield Show later in the month. I also attended a Hull Young Professional summer bbq at the end of the month.

June 2019 - This month started with two weeks annual leave where I travelled around France and Italy. It was a nice way to start the month and was a great break from work! When I returned I started my three months in the Planning and Development department, whilst also finishing off matters that I was involved with in the commercial property department.

This month I have been asked to research numerous topics including the SDLT consequences of transferring a property out of a partnership, and the statutory time periods imposed on landlords and tenants under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987. I have also looked into the succession rights for an Assured Tenancy.

Once again this month has also involved drafting Land Registry applications, I am now much more familiar with the array of different application forms! I have also drafted various SDLT returns upon the completion of a number of matters, and assisted with a number of lease extension matters.

The work experience students joined us for the last two weeks of this month.  I have enjoyed talking to them about a training contract at Rollits and watching their presentations at the end of their two weeks vacation scheme. I look forward to meeting the second cohort of trainees starting next month!

May 2019 - This month has once again been very busy in the commercial property department. I have been involved in a couple of matters this month involving the purchase of properties which I have been able to assist with from start to completion. This has meant that I have had the opportunity to draft Reports on Title which involves collating information about a property, and reporting any issues with the property the client is proposing to purchase, to the client. This is with the aim to confirm to a client that they are purchasing good and marketable title. The information is obtained by looking through the title to the property, answers to pre-contract enquiries and search results including the local authority, environmental and chancel searches. It has been great to see these matters through to completion. I was also able to meet with a client and talk him through the Report on Title, with the help and supervision of one of the partners in this department which was great experience.

I really feel as though my knowledge of property law has developed significantly this month and I continue to gain confidence when interacting with clients directly. I look forward to developing these skills further next month!

April 2019 - April has been another interesting month with plenty to get involved with.

Again this month I have had the opportunity to simultaneously exchange and complete on a couple of matters I have been working on, one of which was an urgent Deed of Variation to vary an existing legal charge.

I have also been tasked with making various Land Registry applications which has included drafting numerous AP1’s and RX1’s amongst others and drafting Reports on Title.

Once again I have been involved in some residential matters which has including submitting a UN1 and C(iv) Land Charge to the Land Registry to protect a contract between exchange and completion.

This month I was also able to attend the Hull and Humber Top 30 Under 30 event at the KCOM Stadium to support Gareth Orriss,a senior solicitor in the department who was one of the 30 winners!

I am now able to work more independently on matters and am really enjoying the range of work within the department.

March 2019 - My first month in the Property Department in the Hull office has been fast pace and very interesting.

So far I have exchanged contracts and completed on three different matters, something which I remember rehearsing on the LPC with my fellow students! I have also had the opportunity to draft numerous Land Registry applications including an AP1, CN1, DS3 and FR1.

Although the majority of work I have been involved in has been on commercial matters, I have also been involved with drafting an Assured Shorthold Tenancy for our residential team.

Other work I have been involved with has included research into the complex SDLT rules which apply when a property is transferred into a Partnership.

All my colleagues in the property department have been very welcoming and I look forward to what April brings!

February 2019 - Tomorrow will be my last day in the Private Client department. I am excited to move to the Hull Office and join the commercial property team but will miss everyone in York and especially the private client team who have been so helpful and patient with me throughout my first seat!

February has been an interesting month as I continue to drafts Wills, Codicils and Trust documents. This has included a Deed terminating part of a life interest in a Will trust, a document which I hadn’t drafted before. 

I have also been involved in a number of probate matters, arranging standing searches with the Probate Registry and undertaking numerous research tasks. The latter has included researching tax reliefs for Venture Capital Trusts during the administration period (something I had never heard of before) and the rights of trust beneficiaries to trust information. It often seems that the more I learn, the more I realise how much I don’t know!

On Friday I attended the Goole and Howdenshire Business Excellence Awards with my colleague Sue Brad. It was good to meet other professionals and hear about all the upcoming businesses in the local area. I’m looking forward to a young professionals event in York this evening.

January 2019 - Throughout January I have become increasingly involved in a wider range of matters as my responsibility within the department continues to grow.

Once again this month I have drafted Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney and various trust documents, including a Deed of Appointment to appoint the assets within an estate to the beneficiaries of a discretionary Will Trust. I have also been involved with numerous probate matters. Following a client meeting last week I have drafted the initial letters to the executors, banks, council and utility and pension providers. On another probate matter I have been involved in the process of realising the assets within the estate, liaising with stockbrokers to sell shares and other investments. In doing so I have gained experience with dealing with intermediaries 

Last week I was able to join Emma Fawke on a home visit to an elderly client where I was a witness to the execution of her Will. We also took instructions for an LPA for health and welfare and property and financial affairs and it was good to experience this side of private client work.

I am looking forward to what my final month in the Private Capital department will bring!

December 2018 - With a festive buzz in the office and having taken some annual leave this month, December has flown by!

Once again I have had a busy month of drafting Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney’s and trust Deeds. Each client and their circumstances is always so different which makes this area of law really interesting. I have also drafted a number of new documents this month which has included a Deed of Revocation to revoke an Enduring Power of Attorney. Moreover I have been heavily involved with a number of probate matters. A particularly interesting estate has been one with numerous investment properties which may end up an insolvent estate as this has meant I have had to liaise with creditors including mortgage lenders on many occasions.

Again I have attended a number of networking events this month which has included the Chamber of Commerce carol service and a York Professionals event named ‘the story of Christmas’ where I learnt how important the Christmas period is for the economy of York. I also attended a number of internal events including the ‘Rollits 2018 Conference’ where our managing partner looked back on the past year of the firm, as well as looking forward to the future. I look forward to what this year brings!

November 2018 - November has been a busy month in the Private Client department.

This month I have been able to further my skills by drafting more Wills, Trust Deeds and Letters of Wishes for both Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney. I have also had the opportunity to undertake a wider range of tasks such as drafting Codicils, an Affidavit of Identity and Letters of Authority. I also completed Stock Transfer Forms to transfer shares from the trustees of a settlement to the entitled beneficiary. Last week I also drafted a Deed of Appointment and Indemnity to appoint trust property to the beneficiaries of a trust, and an accompanying Direction from the beneficiaries to direct the Trustees to sell the property on their behalf.

In early November I also attended Northumbria Careers Fair. It was great to give advice to students about applying for training contracts, and to speak to many who were interested in applying to Rollits. York Business Week also took place this month and I attended a workshop ‘Owning Your Own Career’ which provided insight into how to proactively manage your career development and take control of your career goals.

I’m looking forward to what December brings!

October 2018 - I have really enjoyed my first couple of months as a trainee at Rollits and don’t know where the time has gone! . The Private Client department has been incredibly welcoming and involved me in their various matters. I have been trusted with a broad range of drafting tasks including the drafting of numerous Wills and an accompanying Letter of Wishes, a Notice of Severance and a Deed of Variation. I have also drafted various probate forms including an IHT 205. In addition I have had the opportunity to get involved in the administration of trusts and have drafted a Deed of Revocation relating to a life interest in respect of Trust land. It has been great to get to know my colleagues in the York office and the Private Client department particularly have been great at giving me feedback on all my work, enabling me to advance my understanding and meaning each time I draft a document there are less amendments needed to be made!

Throughout my training contract so far I have also enjoyed attending various client meetings which have discussed creating or amending Wills and the administration of estates. Each meeting is very different and I enjoy writing up the attendance note following the meeting.

I have also had the opportunity to attend a couple of networking events. In September I went to The Business Network event and this month, the Chamber of Commerce Business Lunch. It’s great to get out of the office and meet other professionals from other industries in the area.

I am looking forward to gaining more responsibility as I become more familiar with the work in the department over the next couple of months.


After completing my Geography degree at Newcastle University I moved to the University of Law in Leeds where I studied for both the GDL and LPC with LLM in professional legal practice.

Two weeks into my Training Contract everyone at Rollits is as welcoming as I’d remembered from my interview two years ago with lots of talk of upcoming Christmas parties!

My first week was in the Hull office and was filled with training inductions, events including the Heritage Open Day and welcome meetings, all of which provided the opportunity to settle into the Rollits team.

I moved to the York office in my second week for my first seat in the Private Capital department. The department has involved me in their work and this week has involved drafting Wills, a Deed of Appointment of a trustee and numerous letters and emails to clients. I have also been given various research tasks and attended three client meetings. I’m looking forward to developing my skills further in the next six months as I learn how theory is put into practice.

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