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Graduate Recruitment

A Clause That Fits: A Day in the Life of a Commercial Trainee

The last time I blogged, I was at the end of my Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence seat. Fast forward six months and you'll find me in the middle of my Commercial stint so instead of a medical report, I have a set of terms and conditions in front of me; instead of a schedule of special damages, I'm faced with a schedule of warranties. So what's changed?

As usual, I will clock in, make myself a cup of coffee and look over my to-do list. This would generally consist of (at least!) one contract review to draft, the purpose being to advise a client on the commercial effects of a contract that a buyer wishes to base an agreement with our client on. These generally take a few hours to consider, dictate a first draft, amend, return to a hard-working secretary and finally report back to the lawyer handling the matter.

Whilst the dictation is being typed, I will make sure other tasks are addressed. During this time it is not unusual to be approached by a Corporate lawyer to work on their matters. Today, this comprises of a redaction exercise, working on documents disclosed for due diligence purposes, in preparation for a business sale. After a short period of inhaling permanent marker fumes(!), a colleague and I take a brisk walk to the high street for lunch.

Upon my return, I'm faced with another urgent task. This time, it is drafting two bespoke sets of terms and conditions for the supply of services for an up-and-coming estate agent. Looking to go against the grain of industry practice, they have approached my colleague, looking for his specialist advice in drafting niche terms. I have been given the task of preparing a first draft. So I spend the next few hours considering precedents and free drafting clauses, in light of both our client's instructions and the Consumer Rights Act 2015 that came into force, mid-seat!

Although a seat in Corporate is both challenging and complex, the main skills gained here i.e. commercial awareness and drafting, are absolutely invaluable for a trainee.

Blog post written by Mike Wong

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