Unbelievably, it's a year since I embarked on my journey as an apprentice in the PIMN team at Fieldfisher. It's been a whirlwind of experiences, learning and personal growth with many valuable lessons along the way.
When I first started at Fieldfisher, I had just finished my A-Levels and had no experience of working in an office. The law was largely uncharted territory and the concept of working on high-value, complex cases was daunting.
My first few weeks were spent immersing myself in the fundamental concepts of medical negligence. I learnt about the four essential elements that are the basis of any medical negligence case: duty of care, breach of duty, causation, and damages, and the cases that established precedent in this area of law.
I discovered the extent of research and investigation required in such cases and was allowed to dig deep into medical records, consult with experts and analyse the finer details of each case. This certainly taught me the importance of meticulous attention to detail, crucial in building a strong case.
While the legal aspects of medical negligence cases are undeniably critical, my apprenticeship also showed me the human element involved. I met numerous clients who had experienced life-altering medical errors, and their stories have left a lasting impact.
Listening to these clients share their pain and struggles taught me the significance of compassion in our profession. It's not just about winning cases; it's about making a difference to the lives of those who have suffered due to negligence. Understanding their pain and advocating for justice became a driving force for me.
I have been fortunate to work under the guidance of Kate Rohde, a partner in the medical negligence team, who has been a massive support. Kate shared her knowledge and insight and guided me through everything. I have also worked alongside an incredible team who have encouraged me to ask questions, challenge assumptions, and think critically. Their mentorship and support have been invaluable in shaping my growth as a solicitor apprentice.
One of my most important lessons was that making mistakes is inherent to growth. I encountered setbacks, faced challenges and sometimes made errors in judgment. Each taught me a valuable lesson to carry into the future.
As the months passed, my confidence in my abilities grew. I was entrusted with more responsibilities, given opportunities to draft legal documents, meet clients and even had the chance to attend a trial.
As I bid farewell to my first year, I am so grateful for the incredible journey I've embarked upon. It has taught me that the pursuit of justice requires not only legal knowledge but also empathy, dedication, and a relentless commitment to advocacy.
I look forward to continuing my journey in medical negligence law, armed with the lessons and experiences from this transformative year. I am inspired to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected by medical negligence and to contribute to the pursuit of a fairer and safer healthcare system for all.
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