Renu Daly is a Solicitor who specialises in medical negligence, abuse cases and Coronial Law, involving the preparation and advocacy at Pre-Inquest Reviews and Inquests themselves.
Rosamund Rhodes-Kemp is Head of Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury, and specialises in tackling complex claimant cases, in particular cerebral palsy cases and spinal injury cases.
What Made You Decide to Become a Solicitor?
RD: Having previously worked in the Crown Prosecution Service and as a Police Officer in the Metropolitan Police Service, a career as a solicitor appealed to me because of the investigative process involved and because I enjoyed being on my feet in court.
How Was Your University Experience as a Law Student?
RRK: My university experience was tough, like it is for everyone else who is studying law. It was far more intensive than many other subjects at university and my fellow students seemed to have quite an easy time of it by comparison to the law students!
RD: I very much enjoyed the vibrant university atmosphere. The campus was always alive with students from different backgrounds and cultures, making it a great place to study my subject of choice and meet people from around the globe. It gave me my first opportunity to moot and the facilities and lecturers were excellent. It is often said that you never forget a good teacher and speaking from personal experience, I would agree.
What Skills Do Law Students Need?
RD: It’s important to develop strong interpersonal skills as they are a necessity in this career. People come to you at what can be the most traumatic time of their life. Clients are from all walks of life and it’s important to appreciate the needs of each, one standard approach definitely does not fit all!
RRK: A complete comprehensive grasp on their area of expertise, ability to communicate, respect of others gained from reputation and commerciality.
What Does a Typical Day For You at Hudgell Solicitors?
RD: There is no such thing as a typical day as no two days are ever the same. It can range from visiting clients and attending court all over England, as well as conferences with Counsel to being in the office liaising with experts, drafting documents and assessing the claims you are running. Since no cases or clients are the same, each day is different.
What is the Most Interesting Part of Your Job?
RRK: It’s that twisting and turning in a case and navigating through adverse medical reports or weak experts, moments of doubt or indecision and bringing the case safely into port that I find the most gratifying type of case.
RD: It’s impossible to identify one single most interesting case. Each has presented challenges of its own from high profile abuse claims to extremely complex medical errors.
What’s The Most Challenging Part of Your Job?
RRK: The administrative burden – various reports have to be read and analysed, and requests for information or dealing with all the administrative tasks which are common to every law firm. A lot of these detract from looking after the clients and progressing cases and I find that very frustrating at times.
RD: From time to time it can be difficult to travel back to back from place to place which is sometimes required to visit clients and attend court. This can raise logistical difficulties which often involve long days with early starts and late nights.
What Advice Would You Give to Aspiring Lawyers?
RRK: Choose your subject area carefully and aim for something that will continue in the long term. Many interesting areas of the law have come under fierce attack and funding cuts over the last 10 years and that trend is set to continue. So I’d suggest they go for an area of the law that interested them for sure, but that was here for the long term.
RD: The level of competition in this field can be daunting. The key piece of advice I would offer is to seek experience and opportunity both from the traditional route to your professional destination and from other avenues which may not necessarily be directly related to what you may wish to do. These may assist you in the development of key skills as well as providing you with a wider and more innovative perspective.