How long have you been practising law, and how long have you been with Fee Langstone?
I qualified in 2011 and spent my first year in a general practise firm doing mostly criminal and insolvency work. After that I moved to London where I worked for the banking regulator on large, sometimes multinational investigations (between travelling as much as humanly, and financially, possible). In October 2016 I moved home to Auckland and started working at Fee Langstone almost immediately, so I have been here six weeks.
What attracted you to working at Fee Langstone?
I had always enjoyed contract law and the concept of working in insurance law was something that interested me from when I was still at University, the opportunity just had not presented itself until now. What made me actually want to work at Fee Langstone, rather than just "in insurance law" was the impression I had from reading the website and speaking to my interviewers that this is a friendly, personal law firm. Everyone cares about their work and ensuring it is to a high standard but they also care about their clients, and their co-workers.
How is insurance law different from the work you had previously been doing?
With criminal and insolvency work I was in court almost every day, while with insurance law the court process is a last resort, which allows for a more pragmatic approach to issues. With respect to the work I was doing in London, I was working on investigation teams looking into potential breaches of our conduct principles or of the relevant legislation. The cases often had involvement from law enforcement agencies or other regulatory bodies either from the UK or internationally. Sometimes it felt like a very small cog in a large network of wheels.
If you weren't a lawyer, what do you think you'd be doing?
I had always fancied myself as a bit of a gardener when I was young but despite my Nan's unrelenting patience I never really kept many things alive. Thankfully I had also always wanted to be a lawyer and that option seemed to offer much more potential so I am quite happy where I am. But, if I were to do anything else (and get paid for it) I would love to spend my life walking all the various trails and hikes around the world, helping to maintain them and documenting them to share with the rest of the world. In the meantime I will stick to walking them for my own enjoyment during the weekends.
If you could have dinner with anyone in the world, who would you choose?
Nigel Owens, the rugby referee from Wales. I am quite the rugby fanatic so I would like to meet him on that point alone. Every Welshman I have met has been unbelievably friendly and down to earth, I imagine he'd fit right in at a typical kiwi BBQ. He seems like such a fascinating person, and not just with respect to rugby. He is very quick-witted and funny so I imagine there would be plenty of laughs, at least from me. His book is on my Christmas list so that will do for now