By Sarah McDonald, Summer Intern
I am now entering the final two weeks of my internship and oh how time has flown! Throughout the past four weeks, I have experienced first-hand the work of a private client lawyer.
After taking part in various work experience placements over the past few years, I was in the fortunate position that I knew by the time I was applying for summer internships that I wanted to work in a private client law firm. Turcan Connell is my dream firm, so I was elated when I was accepted onto the summer internship programme.
Tax and Succession
I am in the fortunate position to be sitting between two departments; that of Peter Littlefield and Tom Duguid’s Tax & Succession Team and Gavin McEwan’s Charities Team. Having studied Trusts and Succession Law at Honours, I couldn’t wait to see the practical side to the theory I had been studying for the past three years. I have now drafted documents such as Wills, Codicils and conducted research on surprisingly interesting areas such as Capital Gains Tax! I have even had the opportunity attend several client meetings where the documents I drafted were circulated – something that made me feel very proud.
Having not studied Charity Law at all, I was worried that I would struggle to grasp what it entailed. I was soon comforted by the kindness of the team and their willingness to help me if I was unsure. Some tasks have included: conducting research on leading Scottish charities; drafting Articles of Association; and gathering documents together for an audit. This has now become an area of law that I am hoping to pursue in the future.
Spending my internship sitting predominantly in the Tax and Succession team has allowed me to understand what I would be doing as a trainee. We have also been able to see what the firm does more generally as we have had talks on the other areas of law that Turcan Connell specialises in, and have had the opportunity to reach out to other teams if we wanted a further insight into their department. For example, I had the opportunity to attend meetings with solicitors from the Business Team and Charities Team, where I found out more about their lines of work. I even learned about the firm’s involvement in the Renewables sector after completing a presentation for TCPD.
Turcan Connell hugely values its employees and this can be seen through their treatment within the firm. From attending nutritional wellbeing sessions to being taken out for lunch by my team, the firm has really made me feel appreciated. My work has been very varied and I have been given research and general tasks from trainees, solicitors, associates and Partners alike which demonstrates how tight knit the firm is, showing that even senior positions value the work of interns.
Another excellent attribute of Turcan Connell is its belief in a healthy work-life balance. The inclusiveness of the firm is great and I have had the chance to attend the firm BBQ, summer intern and trainee lunches, dinners, drinks – you name it! I even play in the arranged hockey matches every Wednesday which is quite a laugh as I had never EVER played a match of hockey in my life!
In all, I have had an amazing four weeks at Turcan Connell and really do not want to leave! I have been immersed in a great environment with even better people who have taught me so much about life as a private client lawyer. What I have learnt in these past weeks will be an asset to me throughout the rest of my university career and when I qualify in a few years. I cannot wait to see what my last two weeks with the firm have in store for me!