Sandeesh Shah

Paralegal, Financial Services

Education: Law, Leicester
Joined: As a Paralegal in May 2014
Practice Area: Financial Services

Why did you join Macfarlanes?

I was previously a paralegal specialising in financial services at legal publisher Practical Law. I was interested in putting the knowledge that I had gained into practice and when I saw a position advertised in the financial services team at Macfarlanes, a company that I knew was very well-respected, I thought it could be a great opportunity.

What are your main responsibilities? Describe a typical day.

 My role has developed since I joined. To start with I was just doing non-chargeable work to help the other people in the team, but now I am now doing closer to a 50/50 split of chargeable and non-chargeable work depending on the team’s workload. My non-chargeable work involves organising education and training sessions for the team (including delivering certain training sessions), preparing presentations for clients and writing eBulletins on current topics. I also answer detailed research queries and help manage the team’s know-how.

My chargeable work is similar to what a trainee would do, including legal document reviews, legal research, regulatory due diligence and client advice notes.  

What do you like about working at Macfarlanes?

I like the variety of work that I get involved with. The work is also challenging, so I am constantly learning. I think this is a great reflection of the level of work that Macfarlanes gives to paralegals and trainees, it is a lot of actual legal work rather than just team administration.

I also really like the people. The firm has such a friendly atmosphere and because of the size, you do get to recognise faces, which is great for me when I lose my sense of direction in our new building!

What are your hopes / ambitions for the future?

I hope to continue to develop my knowledge of financial services regulation, to continue to increase the amount of fee-earning work that I do and to become even more valuable to my team.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting a legal career?

It’s ok not to have a training contract. This is something that occupies so much of people’s time when hoping to start a career in law, but you should know that there are other paths. I have just as much exposure as trainees, as I am building my knowledge in my particular area of interest. I also share my office with a partner, which is quite common in the firm and having direct contact with the partner helps me to keep up-to-date on the direction of the practice. 

I like the variety of work that I get involved with. The work is also challenging, so I am constantly learning. I think this is a great reflection of the level of work that Macfarlanes gives to paralegals and trainees, it is a lot of actual legal work rather than just team administration.
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