5 Things I Learnt From My Legal Attachment In London

The SAL Post-Qualification Overseas Attachment was an eye-opener for Danny Quah of Providence Law Asia LLC, showing him new ways of doing things. The 32-year-old shares five takeaways from his three-month stint at Fountain Court Chambers.

The author with Robin Barclay Q.C. Mr Quah spent 2 weeks shadowing Mr Barclay, watching him and his team plan for, execute and finally achieve a significant victory at trial.

For written advocacy to work…

The higher the court, the simpler the submissions. QCs take great pains to ensure that their work:

  • has a meaningful and powerful introduction
  • provides sufficient but not overly lengthy context
  • are well sign-posted and logically ordered
  • clearly identifies the issues and the parties’ positions on them
  • are adequately referenced so that the judges can draw their own conclusions from the primary material if they disagree with the advocate’s submissions

A keen eye for business development

Apart from doing the work well, I noticed that the barristers were keenly aware of the need to actively maintain business development initiatives to ensure a regular pipeline of good work. They keep relationships with their solicitors warm — by scheduling breakfast meetings, coffee catch ups, seminar meet ups and even hosting events. In one case, all it took for a QC to get a new piece of work was being nice to the opposing party’s junior solicitor! You truly never know where your next piece of work will come from.

Clerks? A peculiar profession

Over lunch with a clerk from Fountain Court Chambers, the author gained valuable insights into the profession.

Pace yourself

As one barrister I met reminded me, the law is a long, long journey.

British people really enjoy Singaporean food

The author with his family towards the end of their three-month stint in London.

The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the individual author/interviewee and do not represent the views of SAL Group or other parties.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store