Associate, Commercial Litigation
Bachelor of Laws, The University of Hong Kong
My first Deacons Encounter
Joining the firm as a Vacation Student
Back when I was a fresh graduate, I knew I wanted to train in a firm that could offer me as many options and opportunities as possible and Deacons definitely fits the profile.
The fact that Deacons is a world-class, full-service law firm makes it the ideal place for graduates to train, to learn and to develop; and trainees at Deacons are presented with an array of learning opportunities and a wide spectrum of practice areas to choose from.
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As an associate in our commercial litigation team, I have the opportunity to work on a variety of commercial disputes and proceedings at different levels of court, including shareholders’ disputes, building management, landlord and tenancy disputes, regulatory investigations, defamation cases, employment disputes etc. I am heavily involved in all stages in the litigation proceedings, from attending preliminary meetings with potential clients, preparing and drafting pleadings, handling the discovery exercise, drafting witness statements, dealing with expert evidence, preparing for trial and handling appeals. Another big part of my role is to communicate and liaise with clients, to assist and advise them throughout the entire litigation process.
It is never dull; as cliché as it might sound, every case is different in its own way. The nature and scope of disputes are different for each case, the legal issues we had to deal with are different, our strategy and tactics are unique to each case, our clients’ ultimate goals and expectations are different. It is challenging and it keeps me on my toes.
Looking back, I am very pleased of how far I have come. I first did my summer internship at Deacons when I was doing my law degree and started my traineeship here two years later after graduation. Deacons has witnessed my development over the years, from a fresh graduate barely knowing anything about what it means to be a lawyer and the legal field, to now having a solid understanding and growing expertise on as a litigation lawyer.
The variety of work we handle on a daily basis and the constant new developments in our on-going cases are what makes it an exciting place to work in. Sometimes you can read about a case that features prominently in the news, and a moment later you will find a fresh set of instructions in your inbox dealing with the legal aspect arising out of that exact same piece of news, which makes working on it even more meaningful and relevant.
No matter how “big” or “small” a case is, I have come to learn that every case is equally important and deserves the same level of professionalism and handling. A case often means more to the client than we may realise and clients are often extremely grateful for the services we provide which is a great source of motivation for me.
Very early on during my traineeship at Deacons, a partner once told me that for every piece of work that I do, always put yourself in your client’s shoes and think from their perspective. This applies to everything we do; every single draft letter, email, telephone call with client etc. It is easier said than done but think is certainly something that I bear in mind in my every day work.
Arrive at work, water my office plants, check and respond to emails, prioritise outstanding tasks
Attending conference call with client
Handling follow up tasks / drafting correspondence / preparation for hearing
Lunch break / lunch-time seminars
Attending court hearing
Drafting court documents and papers (e.g. pleadings, affidavits, witness statements, court orders etc.) / drafting correspondence / attending to client’s emails and telephone calls / drafting advice
Being recognised as one of the rising stars in the Dispute Resolution: Litigation category in the Legal 500 Asia Pacific
Being one of the contributors to the Hong Kong chapter of The Labour and Employment Disputes Review published by The Law Reviews
Completed training at Deacons and admitted as a solicitor in Hong Kong
Joining Deacons as a trainee
Graduating law school and obtaining my P.C.LL
Admission into law school