School of Law

Charlotte Newman

LLB Law | 2010-2013

Photo of Charlotte Newman

My time at Leeds

I have been interested in the Law for as long as I can remember. I knew from a young age that I would pursue a career in the legal profession and saw the degree as a pre requisite to achieving my goal. The Law is so interesting, with all its intricacies and abundance of case law and precedents! Of course, I believe in justice and the English legal system but I suppose one of the main reasons I wanted to study Law was because it gave me a platform to truly help people.

I absolutely loved the University of Leeds and found the School of Law to be second to none. The facilities are great, the teaching is engaging and the staff are always on hand to give support and advice; I know that there were a few lecturers that I never left alone! I honestly have never heard a bad thing said about the University, but what can I say I am a Leeds girl and know how great the city and people are too!

First and foremost, I miss the student union (obviously). On a more serious note, I miss academia! I love to learn and the teaching at the university was really enjoyable. I often got involved in some quite heated debates after class!

Since graduating

I am a trainee solicitor for Stowe Family Law, the UK’s largest specialist family law firm based at their Leeds office.  My job as a trainee encompasses a variety roles. I spend much of my day assisting solicitors on their cases, attending meetings and helping with case management. I engage in client and solicitor correspondence, prepare documents for Court, complete financial disclosure and much more. I am now 6 months into my training contract and have started to take on my own cases which is very exciting. 

After completing my degree I decided to undertake works experience before starting my LPC. Naturally, wanting to specialise in Family Law, I arrived at Stowes CV in hand! I started my work experience placement and after a few weeks was offered a paralegal position. A few weeks after that I was fortunate enough to have been offered training contract at the firm. Needless to say, I was over the moon and soon after enrolled on the LPC.

One of the highlights for me has to be attending a final hearing during the early stages of my work experience placement; I was so excited to witness the barristers doing what they do best! Final hearings are quite rare in family law as the majority of cases that litigate, settle at the Financial Dispute Resolution Hearing. My principle mentor, Julian Hawkhead, made the experience enjoyable yet informative and I walked away feeling as though I had gained an invaluable insight into the Court process and at such an early stage of my career.

About me

I am an ambassador for the Teenage Cancer Trust having battled the disease during my final year at university. I enjoy spending my time planning events to raise money for the trust and attending fundraisers to spread awareness of teenage cancers and the charity itself.

I am looking forward to feeling completely confident in what I do and ultimately becoming a successful lawyer. In the future, I would love to be recognised as a ‘good lawyer’ and to be someone’s recommendation! For now, I am simply looking forward to bettering my knowledge and gaining more experience in the variety of cases that we handle here at Stowes.

Work hard. So simple, I know. I can say this because thankfully in my final year I had learnt from my own experiences and mistakes. A great friend of mine once said to me ‘to fail to prepare, is to prepare to fail’ and I believe there are no truer words.

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