Building on Robert Vile’s blog of January this year, this blog aims to give potential applicants and future trainees a better idea of the role of a trainee solicitor in Bristows’ Corporate team.
In M&A and financing transactions, a key part of a trainee’s role is drafting ancillary documents – these are documents that fit around the main agreement, dealing with related matters. For example, if a company selling shares had lost one of its share certificates, it is likely that a deed would need to be drafted to deal with the potential consequences that arise from that loss. Drafting this sort of document is very useful experience for a trainee, and makes it much easier to understand how the various parts of a transaction fit together. In turn, this understanding helps with the project management side of a deal – another big part of a trainee’s role. Keeping on top of the various documents that are being negotiated simultaneously is a challenge, but one that can be tackled through careful organisation.
Another part of the trainee role in Corporate is co-ordinating the work of various teams on a transaction, since the Corporate department frequently works on cross-departmental matters. Trainees will also interact with external parties, such as the solicitors on the other side of a transaction, which makes it easier to understand the overall context of a matter.
An important and interesting element of a seat in the Corporate team is legal research. The sort of points trainees are asked to research are wide-ranging – from public company filings to Royal Charter amendments. Trainees are also likely to gain experience in tax and employment law, adding further variety to a trainee’s time in the Corporate team.
Overall, I would very much recommend requesting a seat in Corporate – it provides an excellent grounding in transactional law, and a great basis for understanding how business and investment work in practice.